Solberg Audunsson, co-founder of Takumi, talks about the startup making social media work better for brands.

Takumi is the startup making social media work better for brands, giving them the opportunity to work with mico-influencers. Solberg Audunsson, co-founder, tells us more...

We came up with the idea when... I observed that small and local influencers were more interesting than big influencers.


The biggest challenge is... Building trust between consumers, influencers, brands and our platform.

The average day is spent... The morning check-in with the product team to review what’s being worked on. We then spend a lot of time on Slack since we have a cross-city startup, including Reykjavík, Berlin and London. My job is to communicate and let others communicate effectively so I spend a lot of time figuring out what needs to be synced and shared internally and externally.

The team consists of... The three founders, sales, account management, community management and the product team in Reykjavík.

My favourite quote... I think a lot about effective communication, and this passage in Creativity, Inc. is one of my favourites:

“Candor isn’t cruel. It does not destroy. On the contrary, any successful feedback system is built on empathy, on the idea that we are all in this together, that we understand your pain because we’ve experienced it ourselves. The need to stroke one’s own ego, to get the credit we feel we deserve – we strive to check those impulses at the door. The Braintrust is fueled by the idea that every note we give is in the service of a common goal: supporting and helping each other as we try to make better movies.”

I am where I am today because of... Knowing when to quit or to move on.

I am who I am because of... My experiences.

The best advice I've been given... “Give it time.”

In five years I’d like to be... Better prepared when someone asks me what I’d like to be in five years time.

The thing no one ever tells you about running your own business online... Seriously, I don’t think anything has been unsaid about startups at this point. The amount of literature is mind boggling so it’s more a matter of navigating the advice and finding your own voice. There are a number of less understood things like how geography affects your chances of success, and when to persist, pivot or quit. But those are personal things.

Our biggest mistake and what it taught us... It’s possible we’ve made a mistake we still don’t know about. Right now I would say that we should have thought about pricing a bit more in the early days. I’m happy with how we addressed those issues at the time though.

The most rewarding experience we’ve had to date... Paying small Instagrammers for their creativity and work more than their reach. That’s what our platform is about and has been extremely rewarding to this date. We also work with bigger influencers of course, but our focus on the long tail means we give opportunities to local brands and smaller influencers.

Download the app on iTunes.

January 2017