Sticking to an ethos

If you're new to these posts, or indeed STAMP, you may not know much about the platform we're creating. The truth is, STAMP takes part of its inspiration from a previous project started by the founders. 

Little Less Known is a creative consultancy that produces high quality visual content for startups, charities, festivals and startup businesses. In a couple of months, the company will celebrate its second birthday, and theres been plenty to celebrate over the past year. 

Right back at the start though, LLK was all about independent businesses. In recent years, we've seen the independent business economy explode with new ideas and entrants. More and more people are shunning corporate jobs and setting up their own craft brewery, coffee-roastery, restaurant and many more. Little Less Known wanted to capture those stories and businesses through their modest camera lens. We made some nice vids.  

And in many ways STAMP wants to do the same. 

The locations you will (eventually) see in STAMP are all curated. We decide who and what will make it onto our platform because we're power-hungry tyrants who want to maintain all the control they can (jokes). Are we limiting our market? Maybe. But we're keen to maintain the ethos of championing the independents whilst presenting users with the best places near them. 

Its not just our outlook either. Theres plenty of data out there that suggests millennials (another term for generation Y which roughly denotes the cohort of the population reaching young adulthood around the 2000s) are basing their purchasing decisions on authenticity, community and individuality rather than the size or popularity of the brand. Its the independents who fit this mould and therefore appeal to millennials. Shocker. 

The question arises however, what actually constitutes an 'independent'? The nature of the ownership? The 'style' of the business? Are they one of a kind? Its a murky concept in my honest opinion and we don't want to start opening ourselves up to criticism of excluding or accepting locations that some may argue don't fit our brand. If an independent coffee shop opens up new locations are they still an 'independent'? Or if an independent brand gets bought out by a larger corporation, should we sling them off the platform? Im a black and white kind of thinker, but clearly theres a whole load of grey in this. 

So whats our solution? Well we're gonna open it up to the users. Although I'm sure we can all agree that perhaps the like of McDonalds or Wagamamas might not be ideal additions to STAMP, if you find yourself sitting in a nice cafe, enjoying a flat white and wondering to yourself 'why the hell can I not find this place on my favourite app STAMP?'. Well dear reader and future avid STAMP user, you can make the suggestion from within the app. (Mind blown). 

Although curated discovery is at the heart of STAMP, its the users who are going to cultivate and guide the population of the ecosystem. And without it's users, STAMP won't become anything. And we'd actually quite like it to become something. 

Till next time. 

S x 

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