The history of eBay, world’s largest online marketplace, and its founder Pierre Omidyar is exactly one of those fantastic business stories that almost kill marketing science but instead maintain humanistic and spiritual ideals. Believe, give, think about people and their needs, find and follow your mission, love what you do and don’t worry about anything else: success and money will knock on your door by themselves.
“Most people are honest. And they mean well. But some people are dishonest. Or deceptive. Protect others from them. Make your complaints in the open. Better yet, give your praise in the open. Let everyone know what a joy it was to deal with someone.” – wrote Pierre in February 1996 to eBay Community after 6 months of working. The problem of getting good feedback that hundreds of marketers face was solved. Pierre’s believing in people has grown in multi-billion dollar business in over thirty countries with 35 000 employees and 11 classifieds brands.
It’s enough to make only one example to illustrate what makes eBay truly great brand: when in 1998 the site was down for 22 hours Meg Whitman, in that time CEO of eBay, decided to call 10,000 top sellers and apologize.
“Our marketplace has never been as big as it is now – and the best is yet to come” – said CEO Devin Wenig two days ago. Somehow we’re sure about that. Happy 20th anniversary, eBay! Thanks for sharing.