We’re back to continue our Spotlight Series: the New Tech Flashback! We asked every company who has ever presented at a New Tech Seattle since 2013 to share the lessons they’ve learned since they first presented with our community. This week, we hear from People Power and hear the progress they have made since they first presented in 2017 and 2019. Have a company that you think has cool New Tech and would like to be featured? Let us know.
New Tech Flashback
People Power (Presented at NTS 2017 & 2019) was founded by Gene Wang and David Moss in 2009 as a cloud computing software company focusing on Internet of Things (IoT) for clean tech. Early on, the company won a Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) grant from the United States Department of Energy to build systems that reduced energy waste. People Power also helped develop Green Button, a landmark initiative to provide utility customers with easy and secure access to their energy usage information – today enjoyed by more than 60 million people. The company also won numerous awards including “Best in Show” at CES and Macworld, and AT&T’s “Power Your Future” contest.
What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned since you first presented at NTNW?
As a product-oriented CTO, the most valuable lesson I’ve internalized is around everything that takes place outside of making a great product. In fact, I’ve learned entrepreneurs must build a second product designed solely to help sell their first. Successful entrepreneurs must identify and articulate a specific customer pain point they solve, they provide education and messaging to help potential customers confirm this is the right solution for them, and they make it effortless for customers to purchase the product. Sounds intuitive, and in fact, none of those steps truly require a functional product! But of course, we can’t sell vaporware – the product customers receive after the purchase must exceed expectations. If product-oriented entrepreneurs only focus on building the great products that exceed customer expectations, then they’re only delivering on 1/4 of the steps required to build a great business.
Did the pandemic cause your company to change/pivot your business model or strategy?
People Power Company was ahead of the curve on the pandemic because our software team was already distributed around the world and working remotely for years. Our business model and strategy fortunately did not change because our services and technologies enable caregivers to understand the health of seniors remotely. As a white-label B2B company, our sales cycles did tend to slow down a bit during the pandemic, but we did end up closing some of the largest brand name service providers we’ve ever encountered to help bring our services to market under their brands.
What is the most innovative way your tech solves problems of your customers?
People Power Company’s direct customers are large brand name service providers and care businesses who want to generate new recurring revenues by combining hands-on senior care with high-tech senior care. At an application layer, People Power provides an AI caregiver that never sleeps, making it feel like someone is always watching over the senior. But we strongly differentiate against other care companies with our AI+IoT technology platform underneath, which is designed to enable channel partners to differentiate themselves. In the same way a developer can build and deploy a new app for your smart phone to make it do things Apple never imagined, partners using People Power’s platform can build and deploy new AI services on top of every internet-connected device and make IoT devices do things the manufacturer never imagined. Today, developers and researchers are creating and deploying new AI services and Synthetic APIs for homes and buildings that we would have never thought about ourselves. The senior care market is too big for one company to handle – empowering others to innovate is key.
What is something interesting and unexpected that people would be surprised to learn about your company?
People Power is not just a company, we’re a band! Check out our latest COVID-friendly music video on YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sOcCcWffsqo
David Moss, President & CTO at People Power Company, presenting at New Tech Seattle back in 2017.
…And in 2019!