Jason Zigelbaum, Founder of JQBX
Who are you?
Jason Zigelbaum. Founder of JQBX.
Can you tell us the story of your business from idea to where you are now?
One day last June my brother and I were hanging out and listening to music. We were taking turns playing songs for each other and chatting about new music and artists we had discovered. After a few rounds of songs he and I started brainstorming ways to recreate this experience online so we could involve a few more of our friends or even a group of likeminded strangers. At that moment the idea of JQBX was born.
Once the idea was fleshed out, I knew that the only way something like this could work in the extremely competitive music industry would be to avoid any licensing deals. So I committed to building the service on top of Spotify’s API. It was definitely a technical challenge, but once a few key features were resolved, it became clear that I could make live sharing music through Spotify into a reality.
A month or so later I had completed the prototype (a desktop and mobile application) and I shared it with my brother. We had a really fun session playing music together on the app and from that point on I knew the idea had legs and could become more than just a proof of concept. I committed most of my time since then to fine tuning JQBX and transforming it something that everyone could get excited about.
What has been your biggest failure or struggle?
Getting eyes on the product! I (naively) always assumed that if you build it they will come… but they wont. You need to hustle and you need to convince people to try your product before you can wow them with it. The first week after I thought the product was ‘done’ and people would just flock to it was a rough one.
And what has been your biggest achievement or success?
The first time jamming out with a complete stranger on JQBX. In that moment I had successfully translated my vision from a conversation into something real that random person chose to use. That experience put a major smile on my face.
What’s your must read business book?
The Great Gatsby.
Who’s your most inspirational CEO or founder?
My wife! She’s the CEO of a children’s toy store called Rose & Rex. She’s been killing it for the last couple years and her success was what motivated me to try something out myself. I’m motivated by her ability to represent her brand well and put herself out there each and every day.
And can you tell us something weird or interesting about yourself?
I have an irrational fear of people sneaking up behind me.