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IMVU: Real Money from Virtual Goods, Media X at Stanford

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Highlighting the value of virtual goods and the business and development process that lead IMVU to success.

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IMVU: Real Money from Virtual Goods, Media X at Stanford

  1. 1. Real Money from Virtual Goods Brett G. Durrett (@bdurrett) VP, Engineering & Operations IMVU, Inc. Media X, Stanford University, August 19, 2010 0
  2. 2. About Brett • IMVU – 2005 – present – VP Engineering & Operations • There.com – Virtual world, RIP 2010 – Various executive roles, 1999-2004 • CEO Asylum Entertainment – Video game developer – 1992-1999, before gray hair 1
  3. 3. What is IMVU? • Not a virtual world • Not part of the healthcare industry 2
  4. 4. What is IMVU? • Not a virtual world • Not part of the healthcare industry So why am I speaking about “Cashing In on Virtual Worlds: Entrepreneurial Insights for the Healthcare Industry”? 3
  5. 5. Why I’m Here • IMVU is a leader in virtual goods – Over 4 million items, worlds largest catalog • IMVU is leveraging this to get real revenue – Over $40 million run rate • We have some entrepreneurial insights! 4
  6. 6. About the Product • Social Entertainment – Play games – Create, build and share clothing and items – Chat • Virtual Goods • Social networking – Friends, groups, networks 5
  7. 7. About the Business • “Freemium” model • Website and Windows client download • Majority revenue on credit sales – Advertising revenue very small • Profitable 16
  8. 8. Customers • 10 million unique visitors per month • 50 million registered users • 2 million active users in the last 30 days • 1.3 million fans on Facebook – But no Facebook application 17
  9. 9. Who uses IMVU? • 65% Female • 60% United States • 60% 18 years and older 18
  10. 10. What Lead to Success? Some keys to success • “Lean” principles – Rapid iteration – Build, measure, learn • User Generated Content 19
  11. 11. Lean Principles Thanks to Eric Ries, http://StartupLessonsLearned.com 20
  12. 12. Build • Variation of scrum • 2-3 week development cycles • Continuous Deployment – All code live to production in 20 minutes – 20-50 changes live per day 21
  13. 13. Measure • Split-test experiment system • Real-time business metrics – Monitoring – Alerting – Trending • User tests 22
  14. 14. Learn • Frequent postmortems • ROI analysis on projects • Transparency! – Data shared with all employees 23
  15. 15. Why is Rapid Iteration Important? Your business plan is wrong 24
  16. 16. Why is Rapid Iteration Important? Your business plan is wrong (until you are monetizing customers) 25
  17. 17. Why is Rapid Iteration Important? Your business plan is wrong (until you are monetizing customers) As you decrease to time to learn why it is wrong you increase your chance of success 26
  18. 18. Why is Rapid Iteration Important? • No blueprint for success with virtual goods • Probably less so in health care 27
  19. 19. Why User Generated Content? • Scalable business • Breadth of appeal • Hit-driven business is tough 28
  20. 20. Virtual Goods and UGC • Over 4 million items, 99% user-generated • 5000 new items every 24 hours • 30,000 creators sold items in past 30 days 29
  21. 21. Conclusion • Great business opportunity • Move fast to find it • Leverage your customers for content 30
  22. 22. Thank You Brett G. Durrett Twitter: @bdurrett bdurrett@imvu.com …and many thanks to Eric Ries of the Lean Startup Great info for entrepreneurs at http://StartupLessonsLearned.com 31
  23. 23. Oh Yeah… Interested in getting more experience? We’re hiring! http://www.imvu.com/jobs/ 32
  24. 24. An online community where members use 3D avatars to meet new people, chat, create and have fun with their friends

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