Local entrepreneur Sam Hogg has become a regular face in national media, but he says he’s not letting it go to his head.
Hogg’s company, GiftZip.com, has twice been recognized by Entrepreneur magazine — once last March for being among a handful of young innovators who used class time to develop business ideas and again in June as one of “10 Hot Startups” to watch.
A lot of companies never land that kind of major press coverage, much less within their first two years of existence. But success, Hogg says, isn’t about landing great media coverage.
“It is always great to see folks writing about your business, as it tends to validate why you started it,” says Hogg, an MSU graduate. “However . . . lots of well-covered businesses flame out, and lots of very profitable businesses remain under the radar forever.”
GiftZip.com allows people to buy online gift certificates from popular retailers like Target, Barnes & Noble, Sephora and Home Depot, among many others.
Hogg came up with the idea for the company during a sustainability class at MSU. He started thinking about how much waste is generated from plastic gift cards and wondered if there was a way to supply e-cards instead.
“If there was any secret to how we got to where we are to date, it lies purely in the people that have worked on the venture, from the staff to firms like Netvantage Marketing and Nicholas Creative Media,” Hogg says. “Those are the people that run GiftZip.com on a day to day basis.”
Source: Sam Hogg
Writer: Louise Knott Ahern
All Photographs © Dave Trumpie