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Overblog in New York: we need to rebuild everything

Was 37 years old, Frédéric Montagnon, founder of Overblog, has left France to install the management Overblog in Manhattan. Dreaming of breaking into the americ

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Overblog in New York: we need to rebuild everything

Was 37 years old, Frédéric Montagnon, founder of Overblog, has left France to install the management Overblog in Manhattan. Dreaming of breaking into the american market and the tickle Wordpress or Tumblr, the first blog platform French gently made his hole in America. First assessment, eight months after his installation.

Why have you installed in New York? You could not develop Overblog to the USA from France?

To drill in the USA, should be in place, both to meet the right people and understand the rules of the game. Otherwise, you do not exist at all ! Julien Romanetto, the other co-founder, came with me to New York, but our teams have remained between Paris and Toulouse, and in Europe for ebuzzing (structure which merged with Overblog, and develops the audience of brands on the web). What we decided, this is the reception we have received when we have presented the new version of Overblog at a conference in New York, in June 2012. There has been ten times more enthusiasm than in France.

Overblog he begins to take off in the United States?

Yes, but this is not easy. It is necessary to rebuild everything. Among our 35 million unique visitors per month, 2 million are american. We have 300 000 blogs in the United States, on a total of 2 million - knowing that we were almost nothing two years ago. We host in particular that of Robert Scoble, a chronicler of tech influence. But for take off, we would have a few other blogs of celebrities.

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What are your levers?

The community management, relations with bloggers, events. And of course, on the specifics of our product. For example, we are the only platform to share the advertising revenue with the bloggers.

What have you learned in terms of business ?

The start-up are very worn on the storytelling, much more than in France. They are also ahead of the monetization and distribution, while in France, it is more centered on the products. But what surprises me the most is the appetite of the Americans for the risk : people are less afraid to make choices that are risky, to focus on a potential. An entrepreneur could pitch an investor on an idea, without having really started something ! In France, we do not allow it.

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Why New York rather than Silicon Valley ?

To be able to work more easily with France. And because it is a creative city, the city of media, advertising, with mid-tech boom. We would like to take advantage of these interactions.

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