We write business for our board, investors, and Moment team members. These are not status reports, instead they represent a chronological journal about what we’ve learned in building Moment. Writing these updates forces us to think about what we’re doing, what’s working, and what isn’t.

Below are updates from 2015. You can read updates from 20182017, and 2016.


Our 72 Hour Sale just about crushed us.

This year we decided to close for Black Friday weekend and instead offer a 72 hour sale from Monday – Wednesday of the following week. The response blew past our most aggressive forecast, bringing in $270K on the first day alone. Comparing orders placed this holiday season to last season we saw 743% year over year growth. (Keep in mind we recognize revenue when we ship).

This result was both amazing and terrible. On one hand it was amazing to have thousands of customers interested in buying Moment. We reached a level of momentum and excitement that surpassed even our biggest days on Kickstarter. On the other hand we instantly sold out of key products, which left little for customers to buy on the last day. To make matters worse we accepted some orders that were beyond our stock on hand.

Since the sale ended we have been in overdrive restocking products, releasing shippable orders on a daily basis, and managing a massive load of customer service emails. Backorders have been the largest contributor to the massive volume of emails we have received this season compared over last year.

Despite dealing with backorders the team has managed to keep our customers happy. Which is never easy when thousands of people are anxious to have their order shipped.

We are almost out of the woods as we expect to ship all open orders early this week, just in time for the holidays. Even though we haven’t had time to recap the holiday season one thing is clear, we left a lot of sales on the table by running out of stock.

Forecasting and inventory management is clearly an area we need to improve upon in 2016.

Need Help
More hours in the day.

Business Update
November was another record month, breaking $350K for the first item. Ten days into December we have already passed November, helping us break $3M for the year.

December is over $360K so far with another $240K in open orders still to be recognized. With the Wide Lens coming back in stock in the coming days we could have a strong finish to the year.

Customer growth has followed a similar pattern to revenue this year, growing month over month since August.

Looking further at our customer mix we see a healthy percent of repeat buyers. Normally 60% of our orders come from first time buyers with the one exception being Q3 when we shipped most of our Kickstarter orders. It shows that Moment Case was heavily supported by existing Moment customers.

Within the same customer mix we see a gradual increase in the items per order. The introduction of new products is the biggest driver to increasing these results.

Comparing our holiday acquisition channels to last season we see that email was our single largest improvement. Last season we launched very few emails, while this year we were much more sophisticated around who, when, and what.

The Moment product line continues to grow. We introduced neck straps, wrist straps, and a carrying solution. Much of which was made in the USA by Black Anchor Workshop (@blackanchor.us).

To support our holiday efforts, we launched our first holiday campaign. Built around the framework of Less___More___ we launched two micro campaigns. You can experience the campaigns here through two lookbooks.

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.


We want to build an awesome team.

Leadership is our biggest constraint in taking Moment from a nice business to a category winning company. And so once a quarter we take three days off-site together in order to work on team dynamics, better communication, and new goals.

Having just taken our seventh Moment Off-site we have come to appreciate that these adventures represent the single largest impact on our culture. Over the last two years we’ve built a deeper level of trust and a personal willingness to be vulnerable with one another. We still aren’t where we need to be on a daily basis in giving each other feedback, but we’re getting better.

We document these off-sites because they represent the history of our progress. It also allows every new team member to go back and understand how we have evolved over time.

Here is our latest Moment Off-site to Snoqualmie Pass.

(password: #makemoments)

Need Help
We are going to unplug for Black Friday and instead come back with our holiday sale starting on Monday the 30th. We’ll email you the sale on the 30th and we would love your help to share it with friends, family, and followers.

Business Update
October was another record month at $337K. It’s also our fourth consecutive month surpassing $300K in sales.

November is suffering from being out of stock the last week with our Wide lens. A normal re-order of the product has resulted in a mini-disaster that we have been scrambling to repair so we can get back on track. If in stock we would have had the chance to pass $400K for the month but instead it looks like December will be overweighted. Restocking the wide lens, shipping Kickstarter orders for the 6/6s Plus Case, and our holiday sale should help to make December an all-time high. Fingers crossed.

In selling out of our Wide Lens we’ve quickly realized the impact of our best selling product. Looking at the items per order over the last few weeks with and without the Wide Lens, it becomes clear to us that a lot of people come to Moment to buy the Wide and in the process by other items. This makes its absence greater than just the direct loss in sales.

We are working on our most advanced email marketing campaign yet. By understanding what percentage of our customers have bought what product line we can then focus our email holiday offers on the products that people have yet to buy. There is definitely a lot of potential upside in selling people the complete line.

Along with introducing our first holiday campaign we have been rebuilding the Moment website from the ground up so it’s faster and easier to buy. Especially in regards to mobile, which represents 40% of our traffic but only 20% of our revenue. In addition to improving conversion rates we also want to improve items per order by suggesting and bundling products. We are pushing hard to have v1 up in the coming days.

In preparation for the holiday season we are ramping up our customer service. Focused on improving our happiness score this quarter we are going to try chat as a type of service. It will be interesting to see how this impacts our quality of customer service.

We are pushing ourselves to begin publishing one piece of content a day per day through The Momentist. We started this year by focusing just on adventures and now we are trying to build our content development to include more guides, interviews, and places. We just released one of our first pieces on using the product to capture better portraits. Read “Shooting Better Portraits With A Mobile Phone.”

Moment, Moment Team, Moment lens, Moment lenses, mobile photography, makemoments, Moment Inc.

We have slowly begun marketing the Moment App, in particular asking for reviews. Having added Apptentive to the product we are experimenting with when and how to ask for customer feedback. Video is coming in a few weeks!

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.


Q3 was the best quarter in the history of Moment.

It was also the most difficult.

As we shared last quarter, bringing a new product to market is hard. No matter how many times you go through this process it’s never easy. Especially in trying to ship two new products at the same time.

Despite these challenges we are proud to deliver our first $1M quarter, profitably. A turning point we hope to continue with future quarterly results.

Read the Q3 Results.
(password: #makemoments)

Thank you for reading.

Marc & the Moment team.

OCTOBER 18TH, 2015

We are on Snapchat!

You can follow us at: makemoments

We are excited to open up our next social platform, which is going to push us internally to be much faster in turning around the content we produce. Plus it will help us to create more depth to our stories by giving people a behind the scenes view.

Need Help
Thanks to Zack Schildhorn for helping with the introduction to City National Bank. Richard Tait for helping us brainstorm a new URL to move past momentlens.co. And Chris Devore for an intro to a local entrepreneur that has built street teams on steroids.

This update we need help with introductions to any travel brands/startups that have large social followings that would be interested in any marketing collaborations.

Business Update
Post Kickstarter this year we are seeing a positive trend with a higher revenue run rate. Compared to last year, when post shipping Kickstarter our revenue dropped before the holiday season, this year we are seeing a new monthly revenue rate established at $300K per month. This is a big deal in helping us drive monthly profitability.

Q3 represents our 5th quarter of data, which means we can compare our results to the previous year. Looking at first time versus repeat customers over this time period we can see that this year the customer mix really changed towards repeat customers. It will be interesting to watch how this trend continues through Q4.

Checking our cohort analysis post the quarter, we can see that Q3 is our strongest group at an average lifetime revenue of $200. This happens to coincide with the most products we’ve ever had available for sale.

October has continued this positive revenue trend. We are up 15% from September, month to date. It appears that the introduction of the Macro lens and confirming that our cases are iPhone 6s compatible are the biggest drivers.

In preparation for the holiday season we are making a series of improvements to the Moment website to make our products easier to purchase (less clicks), easier to discover (better merchandising), and easier to gift. We are hoping these improvements increase our overall conversion rate (1.7%) for both first time (< 1%) and repeat (>2.5%) visitors.

We continue to build our street team strategy. Over the last three weeks we’ve had a friend helping us think through how to grow this initiative from two cities to 10-12 next year.

Version 2.1 of the Moment App is available in the App store. This is our best work yet and is at the quality point we can now begin a relationship with the Apple App store team.

We are pushing hard to increase our content frequency from a few pieces a week to one piece per day. To do this we’ve modified the team roles so five people are now contributing, we’ve created a daily social calendar to ensure consistent posting across all channels, and improved our editorial process. Here are a few recent stories.

We took the next step in building the Moment team with Isabel joining the team. Previously a native of Nashville, she brings her amazing writing abilities and a love for customer service to the team. Her time at Warby Parker and her freelance writing will help us take our Moment voice to the next level. You can follow her here.

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.


Introducing the Moment Macro, the world’s best mobile lens for capturing the tiniest details.

What we love about this new lens is it not only completes the set (wide, tele, and macro) but it takes us into a whole new category of mobile photography. And to put macro photography into perspective the tag #macro on Instagram already has 4.2 million photos.

You can buy the new macro lens here.
(Use this coupon code when checking out for 25% off: #friendsofmoment)

Need Help
Introductions to anyone that has managed and compensated regional territory managers. As we build out the Moment Street Team we are looking to learn best practices for keeping a group of territory leads engaged and pushing forward.

Introductions to anyone that has driven App store success. Now that the Moment App is getting really good we are ready to start working closer with Apple. We would love to learn from anyone that has done this well.

Business Update
September is shaping up to be one of our best months of all time. It also gives us a clear look at our post Kickstarter run rate.

Looking at what’s driving September, we’ve had a few interesting events happen in the last ten days. First we introduced the Macro Lens, which has already sold some 300 units in a few days. Second we signed up our first YouTube star, Casey Niestat, and his first video with Moment has 1.6M views. Third BBC America bought 300 lenses for their agency gift bags.

Just looking at web traffic and sales the last week you can see the impact of the Macro and Casey’s video.

Post Kicktarter and announcing of the Macro Lens we are starting to see a positive trends with repeat purchasing. This continues to demonstrate to us that the more products we have available to our customers, they more they purchase.

The team is on the ground in China working on production for the iPhone 6+ case. They are also making improvements to the iPhone 6 case based on all the feedback we received from the early units. The good news is that the improvements are going to be a massive improvement. The bad news is we still work to do until these new units ship at the end of October.

The Moment App v2.1 was just submitted to the app store and it’s definitely our best release to date. We introduced new slider controls for lighting control and dramatically improved the photo library so you can validate the shot faster with the Moment App over the native camera app. Next up we are working on video.

We hosted our third Moment Assignment with @thesamgraves. This time we tried combining an assignment with a Moment Adventure. This combination resulted in our best engagement yet with 60 submissions, 170 comments, and 17,573 likes. We are also receiving interest from fellow brands who want to partner on future Moment Assignments.

We are excited to welcome Andrew Stoner (@andrewheartsbacon) to the team. He is jumping in with two feet to make our customer service even better. Originally from Montana he has crisscrossed the country to finally arrive in the Pacific Northwest. He is passionate about telling stories, discovering new landscapes, and exploring PNW with his beautiful wife.

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.


We are learning two painful lessons right now.

1) Running out of stock.
Selling out of the iPhone 5s mounting plate for example had a cascading effect. We passed the re-order point (4 weeks) before making our next order, which had us scrambling to make more. We then ran of stock before taking the product off the website which resulted in time spent emailing each customer that had a back ordered product. All while missing revenue until the product came back online.

To prevent this from happening again we’ve come up with a weekly process to align our inventory balances, forecast the next 8 weeks, and re-order for any gaps in the future. We’ve also implemented email capture on any product pages that are out of stock.

2) Poor Product Quality
We pride ourselves on having the best quality products. And the first batch of Moment Cases didn’t live up to our own expectations.

Once the product started hitting customers hands we discovered that some customers overrated their lens (breaking the stop we designed into the case), while other customers suffered from dark corners when they mounted a lens. Both issues are not something you want to discover through your customers.

Worse then running out of product, this lesson is 10x more disruptive because it puts everyone into overdrive.

The product team moved to daily 8am calls with our suppliers to validate, replicate, and fix the problems. We had to pull the remaining product from our logistical center, while finding a path to rework these units. Customer service was instantly overwhelmed, requiring us to move from one person to a designated team of 2.5 with the whole team jumping in to help

After three weeks of battling these issues we are just now making it out the other side with new product arriving at PCH this week, rework being completed over the next two weeks, and permanent fixes rolling off the production line in October.

The bad news is we got a black eye from this experience. The good news is that we are better prepared for this to never happen again.

Need Help
We would love to talk to anyone that has built their business one geographic market at a time. Beyond just hardwares startups, we’d appreciate introductions to anyone that has successfully entered new geographic markets, built community, and was able to measure the results.

Introductions directly to any YouTube influencers or anyone that has experience working with YouTube influencers. We had our first YouTube star using Moment Lenses and it drove meaningful sales. We would love to send out some lens and case kits to more people like Casey Neistat.

Business Update
Despite the issues discussed above Q3 has been our largest quarter to date with August being our second largest month of all time. A majority of this is realized by shipping Kickstarter, but at the same time we’ve seen a strong increase in sales post the introduction of the Moment Case. Revenue growth is tracking at 3.5x to 2014, a rate we will have to work very hard to maintain through Q4.

New customer growth is at 2.25 over 2014, which demonstrates higher repeat purchasing over last year.

Looking at quarterly cohort analysis we can see that each class spends more than the last. Further more, first purchase value continues to rise, which says that the more products we have available for purchase the more money our customers spend. It will be interesting to see how this trend continues into Q4 with the Moment Case and Moment Macro lenses.

We got hammered with customer service volumes in August, which is evident by a massive spike in first response time. To combat this increase in volume we developed two processes that instantly made a significant difference. The first was a daily conversation calculator so we could answer the question, “how many cases will we receive today?” From this analysis we could then allocate hours for individuals on the team. The second was changing our service work flow to maximize our response efficiency. By tagging all open emails first thing in the am into four distinct categories, the team could then focus on similar customer case types. This allowed us to get our first response time back into an acceptable range.

We are starting to spend a lot more time on customer acquisition as we go into the busy holiday season. We’ve started with our own attribution model to better weight which channels are converting customers. Unfortunately Instagram is hard to track, but we’ve given more weight to the last visit instead of just the first visit.

We got lucky and Casey Neistat plugged us in his latest YouTube video. Without solicitation he was nice enough to plug us in the description of his video, which led to direct traffic and sales. From this result we are working on more introductions to YouTube video stars.

We have started implementing a by market strategy with SF and NYC being our first locations. In each city we have identified a Moment Street Team member who is avid within the mobile photography community. They help us on the side to place product in the right people’s hands while taking a small groups on a rad adventure once a month. We are still trying to figure out how to measure success but initially we are tracking revenue within each market to see the impact.

In SF Sam Graves (@thesamegraves) is our new street team member and he recently took an amazing group of influencers to Yosemite for a long weekend. You can read about their adventure here.

Next Moment meet-up is in SF on 9/16. Follow @moment_lens for final details. You are welcome to join us!

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.

AUGUST 16TH, 2015

Man, it’s been a busy few weeks.

Moment iPhone 6 Case is shipping (not without a few bugs) and we are seeing a dramatic lift in overall customer demand. It is both exciting and exhausting.

To take a pause form our regular updates, we have prepared our Q2 results. As part of this update we switched all of our revenue reporting to be based on when we ship an order versus when the order is placed. This was a lot of work to do, especially with so many Kickstarter orders unshipped at the end of the quarter.

A quick summary about Q2 is that we have a timing issue. July and August reflect all the revenue and profits from Kickstarter orders that we hoped were in Q2. Therefore I included some of July’s numbers to provide a sense of where the business really is today.

With the improvements we have made in Q2 with our logistics, service, and internal processes, we can now start to get much more aggressive on acquiring new customers.

Read the Q2 Results.
(password: #makemoments)

Thank you for reading.

Marc & the Moment team.

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

JULY 26TH, 2015

The Moment iPhone 6 Case is shipping!

Photo by: @grapengater

We have shipped about the first 1.5K Kickstarter iPhone 6 orders with the remaining 2K going out the door this coming week.

Almost two years into the company’s history and we have finally shipped our first product system (lens, case, app). This is a big milestone for us. Not only does the case represent our most complicated product yet (hardware and software dependencies), but it uniquely differentiates Moment from everything else on the market.

Although we are shipping we are not out of the woods. Especially with hardware, the first few weeks of a product hitting customer’s hands is a critical time period to identifying and fixing any quality issues that got missed. We hope that everything was caught during production but you just never know.

With that said, we are beyond excited. There is no better feeling then seeing real people using a new product that you created.

Need Help
We are looking for a $500K line of credit to help with holiday inventory purchasing. With margins north of 50%, an extra $500K in cash flow will enable us to secure enough inventory to push for a $4M year. Any introductions to potential partners would be appreciated.

Business Update
Despite the chaos of shipping Kickstarter we took our latest off-site adventure to Orcas Island, WA. It was definitely our best off-site yet. We dove deep into the culture we want to build, reviewed our performance last quarter, and spent time planning out what is next. Read about the Moment Off-site. (password: #makemoments)

Ignoring the craziness of June when we imported 3.5K Kickstarter orders, we are seeing a 38% increase in sales in July over May. What is evident is that most of these additional sales have come from existing customers, especially case owners who have been adding additional products to their Kickstarter orders.

We have more work to do in understanding repeat purchase behavior, especially the difference between case and non case owners, but for now we are pleased to see that our average life time revenue is up to $177. One of our core beliefs is we can reach 1M customers who spend $100 per year with us.

The Macro Lens continues to make progress. We posted another update here just this week.

Processed with VSCOcam with b5 preset

With the iPhone 6 now shipping we can focus our time on the iPhone 6+ version. During the Kickstarter campaign we signed up to deliver the 6+ in August, which was probably a mistake because we are going to miss our date by at least a month. We definitely underestimated the challenges of doing a single case right, let alone the additional work for a larger 6+ size. The learnings from the iPhone 6 will help us during manufacturing of the 6+, but we are definitely behind.

Being late on the 6+ has helped us to realize that we have to step up our game in regards to our internal product development processes.

  • Amanda has switched roles to a full time project manager.
  • A biweekly project review with our key suppliers to discuss and resolve any open items.
  • A daily product quality standup between customer service and product to tackle quality issues that arise.
  • A people schedule to ensure that no one is overloaded by the number of projects on their plate.

We are about to publicly announce the Moment Collective. Quietly we have brought a diverse group of mobile photographers together to use and represent Moment. Not only do they push us to make our products better and our content stories richer, but together they influence more than 5M people through social media.

We are excited to welcome Julia Manchik to the team. A native to Seattle she brings design, photography, and exploration to the team. When she’s not designing you can find her getting lost around the pacific northwest with her husband Yuri. Her unique combination of design and photography will help us take our direct to consumer platform to the next level. You can follow her on Instagram here.

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.

JUNE 14TH, 2015

We are finally in production with the Moment Case and in the coming weeks we will begin shipping it to thousands of Kickstarter backers.

We are exhausted from the nine month journey in making this new product. We are nervous with anticipation to what our customers will say. And excited about the potential for Moment with out first ecosystem in the market (lens / case / app).

By shipping the iPhone 6 case, we can test two of our core assumptions. The first is that customers will buy new products we introduce. And second is that with an ecosystem, they will spend more money with us.

Starting with customer loyalty we want to understand how likely existing customers are to purchasing our new products. Looking at just the iPhone 6 backers we see that 36% are repeat customers and 64% are new customers. It’s hard to get comparative market data but Apple, with an estimated repeat purchase percentage north of 75%, is the bar we are aiming for.

Next we want to understand if these customers spend more or less money when we have an ecosystem of products. Comparing cohort data for June versus previous months we see that in the first month, customers spend 23% more with us, bringing the average spend up to $172 per customer.

Going one step further to look at units per order we see that this group bought 2.5 items per order, which is an 47% increase from our current rate of 1.7. This is super early data, but it leads us to start working on bundling for the holiday season to make purchasing multiple items easier.

We still have a long ways to go in understanding customer purchasing behavior but we are excited by the initial results.

Need Help
Any benchmark data you can share for repeat purchase behavior for standalone brands. We would also love to understand how we rank against other consumer startups.

Business Update
Importing 3.5K Kickstarter orders definitely alters our weekly sales data so comparing 2015 to 2014 (through June) we are up nearly 300%. A trend we would like to continue increasing throughout the holiday season.

We introduced our new Macro Lens and plan to continue posting product updates before shipping in September. We have learned through Kickstarter that talking about a new product before it ships is a great way to build continuous momentum as well as an email list of interested customers. Surprisingly, the Macro Lens is gaining nearly as many email addresses per day as the Moment Case.

Speaking of Moment Case, we continue to capture more customer email addresses. We are hoping to enable purchase for non Kickstarter backers by mid July for an early August delivery.

We pushed a Case compatible version of the App to the App store and are waiting for approval. Our goal is to have a 95% success rate on first use. We are anxious to see the results once the case starts shipping.

We launched our first edition of Moment Assignments. It’s an initiative we have talked a lot about and this was our first public attempt. Introduced by @benjhaisch (Moment Collective Member), he picked the most inspiring photo with the #getlostgetaway tag posted to Instagram. We saw 200 submissions and noted a bunch of smaller metrics we are going to track on the next assignment. Keep in mind we are still figuring out the right content recipe so expect some variations with future assignments.

Customer service has been strong the last few weeks. Being lead by Vincent, we have seen a 56% increase in conversations to an all time high of 1,760 conversations this month. Despite the increased volume with managing Kickstarter orders we have maintained first response time to under 12 hours in total and under 3 hours during office hours (M-F from 8am-5pm).

Looking at first response time during office hours we can see that we either respond very quickly or get backed up and it takes us a few hours to respond.

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.

JUNE 14TH, 2015

There are phases along the journey where grinding it out is the only option. Opposite from the energy you gain while creating, ‘the grind’ is both exhausting and necessary.

The last month has been one of those phases.

Bringing a new hardware product to market is never easy. No matter how experienced, there are points where grit is what wins. The team spent nearly a month on the ground in Shenzhen, living in a hotel and spending +16 hour days tackling whatever problem arose.

At the same time, the rest of the team was busy moving our entire logistics system to a new, larger partner. PCH International now provides us with Apple quality shipping world-wide, but on-boarding to their platform required execution of hundreds of small details.

Although the grind is nearly over, we still have another three weeks of heads down execution to complete. We start mass production on the Case in the coming days, we have to deliver everything to PCH on time, and then accurately deliver +4K Kickstarter orders.

Keep sending positive vibes. We are on the verge of delivering our best work yet.

Business Update
We have had a solid two weeks, with sales being up nearly 30%. This puts us ahead of both April and May by 25% and a bit behind March. We expect our top line number to begin accelerating over the coming weeks as we import our Kickstarter orders and make our new products available for purchase.

In addition to new customer growth we have seen continual growth in email capture for customers interested in buying the Moment Case. We are now up to 4K emails and hope this reaches over 5K before the Case becomes publicly available in July.

If you look at our average daily revenue the last six weeks (about $4K per day) and the potential average daily revenue from the Case (about $6K), we see a path to $8-10K in daily revenue with this new product line.

We have been much more aggressive in the last three weeks in seeding lenses with influencers. We have partnered with a handful of brands who have each distributed lenses to their own influencers, creating a network effect. We expect these efforts to continue throughout the year.

Something really interesting happened in the last two weeks. We had our first Momentist story syndicated on Outside Magazine’s website. They included photos taken by Chad Copeland (one of our collective members) from his Iceland Adventure. It directly drove $2K in revenue. This has us thinking much bigger about the content we produce and how we syndicate it with other publications.

Now with Apple analytics we can start to learn more about the App store and what works to improve our download conversion rates. We are limited on source data but it looks like about 16% of the App Store traffic comes directly from the Moment website. And of the total visitors to the App Store about 15% download the app. These data points create benchmarks that we can study over time.

After weeks of hard work we are now shipping with PCH International. They are one of the best logistics companies in the world, so over night we move from crappy shipping to the same back end that Apple relies on. In the US we now offer reliable seven day ($6-12 per order) and three day ($15-20 per order) shipping. While outside of the US we offer UPS three day shipping and collect import duties/taxes up front. We are anxious to see how this impacts our NPS score going forward as shipping was our biggest customer complaint.

Over the coming days we will be watching our cart conversion rates to see what happens with our new shipping rates and the requirement that international customers pay import duty/tax in advance. The good news is that after the first 3 days we have seen an 50% increase in checkout conversion rates for international customers.

In taking our customer service to the next level we are excited to have Vincent Carabeo joining the Moment team. By way of San Francisco and New York, he brings his love for people and mobile photography to helping us make our customer service even better. You can follow him hereand read his first Momentist story here.

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.

MAY 23RD, 2015

Moment is about getting lost.

Much bigger than just the products we make, the Moment brand is about inspiring people to experience more. And as we shared last update, we want to deliver on this promise through content that converts new customers and inspires existing ones to participate.

Looking at other brands that have won with content to commerce we can see that each stands for something unique.

  • RedBull: their mantra ‘gives you wings’ is literal to the athletes they sponsor, the death-defying events they create, and the crazy late night parties they throw. All of this fuels a very distinct type of content that inspires customers to engage with the brand.
  • GoPro: less articulate about a deeper purpose, they use every day consumers to replicate what RedBull has created. Participating in everyone else’s events they create mind blowing videos that get pushed through social channels in sophisticated ways. All from a POV perspective their content re-enforces the core value of their product.
  • Nasty Gal + Dollskill: two modern day fashion brands that are driving commerce through distinct photography of clothing and people. Their anti, “us against the world” mentality cuts to the core of what young women believe. Because they are e-commerce companies selling other people’s clothes they can offer lots of shopping variations on a continual basis, driving higher conversion results for their efforts.

To make our content unique we believe we have to drive Getting Lost through to everything that we do. By enabling people to do rad stuff we can generate content that is unique to Moment.

  • The Adventure Fund (password: #makemoments) enables our Collective members to take rad trips, producing mind blowing content. Link and Link.
  • The Moment Street Team will become an on the ground group of people around the world who get lost through community photowalks and local adventures. Link.
  • Moment Off-sites not only bring the team together but create shared experiences that our community can connect with. Link (password: #makemoments).

We are still a young brand that is learning its voice, but we are excited about the initial foundation we have built.

Need Help
Same as the last update, we are starting to look for a full time performance marketer. Ideally someone that loves mobile photography, is a quant nerd (in a nice way), and lives in Seattle. We would appreciate any recommendations on potential hires or people who can point us in the right direction.

Business Update
We continue to gain new customers at a consistent rate, but since we haven’t introduced any new products since last November we have seen a slowing in repeat customer purchases. We expect that to change in July once the Moment Case and Straps are available for purchase.

This is further supported by the rise in page views, driven by repeat customers returning to the site to read Momentist content. It has lead to the first time that our conversion rate is higher for new customers versus repeat customers

Our top Momentist stories drove almost $3K in sales in the last two weeks. Understanding the data is helping our editorial process in figuring out what is and isn’t interesting to our readers.

We are also driving more traffic for the Moment Case now that we are nearing public release. We have been capturing over 500 email addresses each week and are now up to 3,500 total emails interested in purchasing the Case when it is available.

The team has made incredible progress the last two weeks in bringing the Moment Case into production. No matter how experienced you are, manufacturing a new product is never easy. And our latest Kickstarter update shares just how emotionally and physically draining this process is. We still have work to do during mass production, but we feel good about the quality of the product we are creating.

To support the release of the Case we have been working hard on the next version of the Moment App. Our goal is to deliver a 95% first time success rate so we have spent a lot of time iterating on the first time experience. We hope people love the product from the first time they put it on their phone.

Better shipping has been a quest over the last three months and we are only a few weeks away from our new partner handling all of our logistics. This is incredibly exciting because now we can deliver faster, cheaper, and more reliable shipping to our customers. We are hoping to go live by the week of June 7th, which is plenty of time to work out the kinks before shipping our Kickstarter orders.

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.

MAY 10TH, 2015

Happy Mother’s Day!

One of our core strategies to reaching new customers is something we call ‘Content to Commerce.’

It’s a strategy that was perfected by RedBull and copied so well by GoPro that they crushed us when we were building action cameras with Contour. In the end, the only difference between RedBull and GoPro was that RedBull sold sugar water and GoPro sold an action camera.

Fast forward to Moment and we are taking the best of what we learned from the action camera market and applying it to mobile photography. Which means that internally we have been working hard on our ability to create, publish, and syndicate content. And because mobile photography based content has a much shorter shelf life than a great video, we have to work even harder in producing interesting content on a consistent basis.

What makes us excited about the potential of this strategy is we can finally measure the revenue impact of each story. Although our syndication efforts are minimal, content has directly attributed to 7% of our revenue over the last 30 days. That is a solid foundation we plan to build upon.

Need Help
We are starting to look for a full time performance marketer. Ideally someone that loves mobile photography, is a quant nerd (in a nice way), and lives in Seattle. We would appreciate any recommendations on potential hires or people who can point us in the right direction.

Business Update
In the last two weeks we have seen a slight increase in sales and new customer growth. Down from our Kickstarter high’s we are still ahead of our pre-kickstarer sales rate.

April was down 13% from March which isn’t too surprising considering our focus on launching the Moment case, its new accessories, and a new Macro lens. We are up 286% year to date from this point last year so we feel good about our momentum heading into the holiday season.

Our data around customer acquisition is getting better and better. The use of UTM codes is continuing to help us sort out accidental versus on purposeful traffic. Just looking at the last two weeks we have seen positive trends with social (+38%) and email (+28%).

Apple released a beta version of analytics so now we have some insight into our app store performance including traffic sources to our app store page, downloads, sessions, and retention. Active users are up 33% over the last two weeks to 5,497 as it appears we were featured in Europe again as a top new app.

The Moment Case is coming along. The team is in Shenzhen china for the next two weeks producing our the first units. Manufacturing is definitely one of the scariest and yet rewarding parts of the journey. Full update here.

NPS is staying consistent at 65.94 while first response time continues to stay under 10 hours.

While preparing to ship the Moment Case we are also heads down making a big switch from our current 3PL to a new provider, PCH. They happen to provide kitting, packaging, and logistics for many of the largest CE brands and have a speciality of shipping direct to consumers around the world. This will enable us to deliver within 5-7 days while lowering our per shipment costs and increasing our customer experience.

Last but not least, we are excited to add our ninth full-time person to the Moment team, Mckenzie Barney. She started by helping us on the side while living in NYC. She did such an amazing job that she joined the team full time to help us improve our community and content development. Having spent her teenage years in Seattle she is excited to make it back to the Pacific Northwest where her love for mountains, saltwater, and photography can shine. We feel lucky to have McKenzie as part of the Moment team.

APRIL 28TH, 2015

Now comes the real work.

The past 18 months have been incredible. Moving from a prototype to shipping our first product to building our customer base, everything has been a positive. We feel blessed and grateful to be where we are at this point.

From this point forward the journey gets a lot harder. Turning Moment into a $100M business will take incredible resolve. A daily commitment to get better at the little things. A consistent effort to turn long hardware development cycles into beautiful, easy to use experiences. The willingness to get better at what’s not working. The discipline not to become complacent. And the balance between running a marathon and winning stages along the way.

We started Moment because we believe that photography leads us to explore and discover things in a highly personal and intimate way. But to deliver on this purpose for years to come we have take Moment from a rad young brand to a successful category leading company.

Coming off our latest Moment off-site we are more committed to this journey than ever.

Need Help
Help sharing our latest Momentist piece, ‘Life Over Lenses.’ Created and shot by a Moment customer it epitomizes everything we believe about photography and life.

Business Update
Q1 resulted in our best quarter yet. Driven by Kickstarter press and the Wall Street Journal, we hit $450K in revenue which was 45% of all of 2014’s revenue. If you include Kickstarter we had over $1.1M in revenue in Q1. We are definitely excited to ship the Moment Case in the coming months as it brings us a whole new product category.

Read The Full Q1 Recap
password: #makemoments

April has been a bit slower than March as we come down off the Kickstarter high and focus on bringing the Moment Case to market. Shipping this product takes a lot of work, requiring us to spend time executing on its details over driving more customer awareness. Now as we move into the final phase of developing the product we can get back to reaching more press and pushing out more content.

Currently one of our big efforts now is improving the data around our conversion channels. Included in that effort is creating custom channels in Google Analytics and then starting to use UTM codes religiously so we can improve the quality of our channel data.

By using UTM codes we can start to organize our content efforts into campaigns. Just in the last two weeks you can see that our work around producing content and converting that into customers has produced $5K in sales. We still have a lot to do here in learning what type of content converts, but we are our way to understanding content to commerce at a much deeper level.

Going one step further and looking at an individual piece of content (Behind The Glass With Jose Tutiven) we can start to understand which channels drive the most revenue. Instagram was a clear winner with this story.

The Moment Case continues to come along. We are now moving into the production phase and the team will be spending the next three weeks in Asia working through the first builds. Please keep your fingers crossed for us that everything goes smoothly. This is go time!

The Moment App continues to get better. We have shipped a handful of small improvements gearing up towards a big release with the Moment Case. We are going as fast as one developer and one designer can go. Unfortunately one of the tradeoffs with keeping the team leans is how many features we can build. We are up to 4,336 bi-monthly active users.

Capturing NPS is critical to our success. We started gathering this data late in Q1 and are now working to make improvements that drive our score above 70. One of which is switching from our current 3PL logistics partner to a new partner that handles Apple’s logistics. This will dramatically improve our customer shipping experience and reduce our average cost per shipment.

Customer service response time has stabilized based on the number of people we have available. In order to take the next step in having faster response times we will have to hire more people and/or provide alternative customer contact channels other than email. This is something we will visit in Q3 and Q4 as we gear up for the holiday season.

We are excited to call the Moment Studio our new home. Over the last month we have gone from borrowing everyone else’s office space to having a permanent place we can call home. The raw potential of this space is everything we hoped for in building a studio that enables our team to think, build, and collaborate.

Most important of all we continue to develop the Moment team. Our latest off-site to Cle Elum, WA produced the most honest conversations yet with actionable insights about how we get better. Building the best team in the world will be a key part of our long term success.

Read The Full Off-site Recap. (password: #makemoments)

APRIL 6TH, 2015

At Moment we believe in understanding our results. We want to build a culture that we can be proud of and a company that is profitable. And the only way to get there is to make small improvements every single day.

Therefore we’re taking a break from our normal company updates to provide a thorough recap of 2014. This is our first real deep dive into the business and something we plan to repeat on a quarterly and annual basis.

It would mean a lot if you had 15 minutes to read it.


(password: #makemoments)

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.

MARCH 8TH, 2014

We have some big expectations to fill.

The Wall Street Journal article raised the company’s profile as a category leader, expected to deliver products that match this new status. The 4,833 Kickstarter backers who pledged nearly $700K are expecting us to deliver on our promise with the Moment Case. And now our friend Om Malik (@om) is suggesting that Moment is more likely to disrupt the mobile photography space over the traditional Japanese camera makers.

Om’s post (Standalone camera: Shot (Dead) By iPhone) is one of the most thorough articles about the death of the camera and the rise of mobile photography. Comparing the growth in iPhone sales against the shrinkage in traditional cameras, he uses data to support the cultural shift we have all recognized. And although we are honored that he gives us a fighting chance to lead the category, we have a lot of hard work in front of us.


Need Help
Help sharing Om’s piece on your social channels. Standalone camera: Shot (Dead) By iPhone.

Business Update
Our Kickstarter campaign had a really strong finish. We ended up raising $693,435 on 4,833 backers, which is up 50% from our first campaign. But more importantly we were able to raise our average dollars per backer from $96 to $143, validating our premise that with a complete ecosystem (case, lens, app) people will spend more money.

If you count Kickstarter as revenue we did over $1M, which matches our totals from all of 2014. But since we can’t count revenue that hasn’t shipped we have officially done $313K through February.

The first six days of March have continued our momentum, maintaining over $5K per day in sales. Keep in mind we are only selling Moment Lenses on the website and will begin collecting email addresses for people interested in buying the Moment Case. We don’t plan to take pre-orders for the Moment Case as that creates more hassle than it’s worth.

Now that we are installing RJ Metrics we can begin to understand the business even better. The basis of our thesis is that Moment can grow to be a company with one million customers who on average spend $100 a year. Not counting our latest Kickstarter campaign we have passed an important milestone of our first 10K customers who on average have spent over $125 with us.

As part of becoming a scalable company we have dramatically improved our end of month, quarter, and year end closing process. It took us almost a month to reconcile 2014, two days to reconcile January, and less than a day to reconcile February. But rather than shove 2014 into an email we’re going to build a private web page that breaks down the year with lessons learned. We’ll send that out in the next update.

The Moment App continues to grow in the number of active users. New installs has slowed since being featured, but this was a great initial practice in being featured, engage with our users, and making decisions about how to make the product better. We plan to make a big push again later in Q2 as we get closer to shipping the case.

Continuing to improve upon The Momentist, we have spent the past two weeks improving our process from story idea to how we push it online. Focused on four types of stories (Adventures, Moment Made, People, Making of) we are getting better at delivering an inspiring bi-weekly email. Results from the last content email we pushed.

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.


I think we have hit product market fit.

In 2014 we achieved $1M in revenue. In the first two months of 2015 we are on track to pass $900K ($300K direct and $600K on Kickstarter).

What makes this significant is these numbers are not inflated by distribution or retailers. This is purely direct to consumer with a personal relationship with over 12K customers.

Everyone defines product market fit differently but I personally agree with Marc Andreesen’s version, “product/market fit means being in a good market with a product that can satisfy that market.”

We are in a great market (mobile photography) and initial products (lens, case, and app) that can satisfy the demand for better tools. Even more fundamental than the recent growth in sales is the realization that we are seeing very similar patterns to what we experienced early on in the billion dollar action camera market.

  • The mobile photography market is rabid for better tools. We are seeing this measured financially (success of our two Kickstarter campaigns), socially (positive growth on Instagram and Twitter), through customer growth (especially word of mouth tactics), and the response from key influencers in the market. This has also been validated by the success of VSCO and their mobile photography software.
  • Existing customers are repurchasing (accessories, case, and app) and new customers are spending over $116 per purchase. The secret to the action camera business was repeat purchasing with a high dollar per customer value.
  • We are experiencing increasing month over month growth in sales, traffic, brand awareness, and app downloads. This is driven by strong word of mouth and increasing press coverage. Capped by a recent feature about Moment in the Wall Street Journal which drove $30K alone in sales with a much broader set of customers.
  • There are an increasing number of iconic category pieces being written in major publications about the fundamental transformation of picture taking. This is a good time to build a category leading brand.

We now have no doubt that there is a real business here. The question still remains just how big it can become.

Need Help
We only have 3 days left until our Kickstarter campaign is over. We would love your help to share the campaign one more time with your followers!

Business Update
Success on Kickstarter and coverage by the Wall Street Journal have lead to an incredible month. We are already up 56% over January and the month still has a week left. This could be our first non-holiday, $200K month.

The Wall Street Journal article was a monumental achievement for Moment. Not only did the title and iconic photo encapsulate our very mission, but the editor made mobile photography approachable for everyone. He demonstrated that this wasn’t about tech but instead about the lifestyle of taking better pictures with your phone. The web version of the article directly drove $6K in sales and the print version indirectly lead to the single largest sales day in company history at $30K.

As goes the awareness in Moment goes the number of Moment app downloads. I wish we could say this was on purpose, but we were featured in the App Store in all the markets outside the US. It made the Moment App the #7 most popular app in several countries around the world, leading to 10x growth in new downloads.

The app still has a long way to go by our own standards, but we feel good that our 14 day active users are now over 20K.

Amazing customer support is critical to our success. Despite the onrush in new customer demand we have continued to keep our support times down to under 8 hours for first response.

As we think about what it takes for Moment to become a $100M business there are a few fundamentals we continue to focus on.

  • We made a complete overhaul of our inventory management system by switching from Tradegecko to Stitch Labs. This was a massive undertaking that required several late nights to make happen. But it is a key element in making sure we can drive a profitable, tightly managed business going forward.
  • We have created a monthly closing process so we can turn out financials on a timely basis. We should have 2014 ready for the next update.
  • We are in the process of installing RJ Metrics so we will soon have a comprehensive dashboard that enables us to better understand our customers, why they buy, and what works to get another one.

Second to being in the right market at the right time is developing an amazing team. From day one I have made a personal commitment to build a team that could punch above its weight. In order to this we share an off-site adventure once a quarter to build trust, work on our team dynamics, and to create deeper relationships. We also feel it’s important to document these experience for future team members to understand our path. Here is what we learned on our recent trip to Winthrop, Washington.

Moment Off-Site (password: #makemoments)

As we took one step forward in the last update in creating some amazing content we took one step back in realizing how just hard it is to create world class content on a weekly basis. Although our social followings continue to grow we took the last two weeks to improve our content development process. We expect to deliver some great work over the coming weeks.


We love Kickstarter.

It’s a place where everyone can create. Where the unknown brand stands a fighting chance against the known. Where encouragement is rewarded over negativity. Where a small team of builders can discover initial customers who believe in a vision.

This is why we went back to Kickstarter with the Moment Case.

The last two weeks have been amazing. Not only has our success on Kickstarter given the team a next level of confidence, but it has validated one of our most basic assumptions; an ecosystem (case, lens, an app) makes Moment a significantly more valuable business.

We see this reflected by a 40% increase in the dollars per backer on the Moment Case campaign over the Lens campaign. With just lenses the average backer pledged $97, which is consistent with the $110 we saw through 2014 in selling two lenses. With the introduction of the case the average dollars per backer has risen to $138, validating that with a case people will buy more stuff (lenses and custom color ways).

Our original hypothesis was that we could reach 1M customer who spend $100 per year with Moment. If you are to say that Moment customers are going to spend over $100 per year, this business just got a whole lot more interesting.

We still have a lot of work to do in shipping the Moment Case, but we are very excited about the potential in taking Moment to the next level.

Please back the Kickstarter project and tell all your friends that we now support the iPhone 6 and 6+.

One of the Moment Collective members took the Moment Case on a weekend adventure and posted an amazing review about the product. We would love help sharing this post.

January was a solid month. Not counting Kickstarter, the Moment website brought in $115K in sales, which was second only to December. If you count website sales and Kickstarter we had a $386K month, our best in company history. This tells us that holiday shopping and new products are both drivers for the business.

This momentum has carried into February where we have already had one of our best weeks with $46K in sales. I wouldn’t expect this rate to continue, but it has been another validation point to the importance of new product announcements.

Comparing these last two weeks to the peak of the holiday season you can see some interesting trends.

  • The Moment Case announcement brought 40% more traffic to the website but it converted to sales at less than half the rate of December. Its another data point that validates new traffic doesn’t buy on first visit. Most often customers buy on a subsequent visit.
  • When we announce a new product we should turn off search advertising and double down on retargeting. Because we can drive a large volume of organic traffic through the media any SEM efforts are wasted. Instead we should create better retargeting ads to convert new visitors.
  • Even though our overall conversion rates were down compared to December, the dollar per customer rose 8% to $117 per person.

Along with increased sales, the introduction of the Moment Case brought a 161% increase in new app downloads over the last seven days. We did release v1.3 of the app and for the first time announce it publicly on our social channels. We’re now up to 2K bi-weekly active users with the app. This slow growth approach is what we were looking for.

Over the last two weeks we have had our best content to awareness efforts. In addition to announcing the case we published (1) Moment Adventure with Sam Elkins, (1) Moment Review with Griffin Lamb, and (5) #momentmade posts. We also sent our next Momentist email to 10,500 people, learning that Sundays perform a bit better than Thursdays. This effort has definitely made an impact on our social growth over the last 30 days.

In the background we have been working on transitioning the Moment Collective from a loosely affiliated group for 30 influential mobile photographers into an annual commitment with 50 amazing influencers who represent the brand and inspire us to get lost behind our cameras. We have just sent our first sets of invitations and will be excited to make this list public in the coming weeks.

To support the Collective members we announced the Moment Adventure Fund (password: #makemoments). This is very confidential and just for the Collective members, but it is a program that provides capital for them to get lost around the world. In exchange they provide content that we craft together into rich stories to be shared. The Moment Adventures you have seen so far are just a prelude of what to expect in 2015.

At 8 people, we are starting to find or rhythm as a collective whole. The last two weeks represent some of our best work yet.

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.

JANUARY 18TH, 2015

Confidentially, we’re heading back to Kickstarter on Tuesday, January 27th.

A year ago we launched Moment on Kickstarter because we wanted to create the best lenses in the world for mobile photographers. Thanks to the community’s support, we did it!

Now we want to take the next step in making it even easier to take better pictures with your phone. Even with our beautiful lenses we are still missing important shots with our phones. By the time we reach into our pocket, access our phone, unlock it, adjust the scene, and take a picture, we’ve lost valuable time. Add in a moving subject by the time you tap the screen you missed the shot.

So we decided to solve this problem by making the first iPhone case that truly brings the best features of a traditional camera, back to your phone.

Introducing the Moment Case; the fastest way to take better pictures with your phone.

This case is more important than just a case on your phone. It’s a fundamental shift in mobile photography and for Moment, it represents our first complete system; case, lens, and app. It opens us up to a larger customer base (i.e. anyone on Instagram). And by putting these three parts together we can unlock features that were previously unattainable in mobile photography.

We are in the process of filling our patents so can’t yet share anything beyond this. We have spent the last five months working on this product and we think you’re going to love it.

I will send an email when we are live on Tuesday, January 27th. I’m counting on your support to back and share the project!

Please click on and share our first Moment Adventure. Frozen Island // Iceland on iPhone.

January is starting to pick up. Our daily average of $3,164 continues to be higher than September, October, and November. Especially over the last seven days we have began to see a slow increase in volume. It would be great to see our first non-holiday $100K month.

Something interesting happened the last five days. We pushed our first Moment Adventure (Iceland on iPhone) and we saw a 50% increase in traffic and a 28% increase in sales over the same time last week. It tells us that our plan to fund +50 Moment Adventures this coming year will work to drive traffic, awareness and sales. This is just the beginning of our effort around content to commerce.

Most promising about the Adventures is the impact we saw on the Moment ecosystem. The Moment Collective members were more engaged than ever in liking and pushing the content. Our Instagram feed had some of our highest per post engagement rates. And the Moment Apps saw a 40% increase in weekly users. Although we still have a lot lot to improve upon in coordinating our social pushes around content, we are excited about the potential in driving content to commerce.

Frozen Island stats.

Instagram post engagement.

Moment App changes over previous week.

Along with announcing our first Moment Adventure, we unveiled the content brand we’re going to drive; The Momentist. We have changed our blog name from Journal to Momentist. And we have started sending bi-weekly content emails that our customers will actually want to read.

Stepping back from the immediate results, last week we headed out on our latest Moment Off-site. We take these team adventures once a quarter to work on our collective dynamics, review our results, and set new goals. A full breakdown is coming in the next update, but wanted to cover our Q4 results and Q1 initiatives.

Some callouts from last quarter.

  • We grew the brand footprint. Doubling our Instagram followers, driving more website visitors, and getting our first app downloads was a positive sign. We are still learning what works to increase our reach.
  • Engagement to customer purchase made improvements, but still a lot to be done. Repeat visitors convert at 2x the rate so we are thinking hard about how we can bring people back to the Moment brand. We do expect Instagram engagement to slow as we increase in size, but want to maintain a +70 engagement rate. The app still has the most upside as we have yet to really push it publicly.
  • Cash flow is solid. We finished the quarter with over $1M in the bank. We are still closing out our books from the quarter so hopefully next update we can break down the financial results.

One of the areas we’re constantly working on is defining our workload. The exercise of creating goals and defining two week sprints is something we expect to constantly improve at. Some color on our Q4 goals

  • We feel good about our first quarter of setting goals.
  • Overall we decided to push the Moment Case until after the holiday season so we could focus on driving the current business. In retrospect that was the right decision.
  • We onboarded three people during this period so many of the goals were handed down to the team without their input. That will be different going forward.

Looking at our Q1 goals.

  • Our goals are broken down based on how the company is organized. We don’t believe in traditional structure (sales, marketing, engineering, etc) instead we organize people based on our key initiatives. Driving our Product Engine, Moment Direct platform, and Community reach is how we believe we can win the market.
  • Product engine still has 5 of the 8 team members so we theses are our most aggressive goals. Raising $1M on Kickstarter would be amazing, but incredibly hard to do.
  • Moment Direct is a solid catcher’s mitt at this point, but to see a step function in growth we need to double down on customer love (better logistics, service, etc) and enabling our customers to tell their friends. We are missing a few bodies still to nail these goals.
  • Community engagement is critical for us and you will see a few big announcements in the coming weeks around the Moment Collective and Moment Adventures.

We can’t have a Moment update without some inspiring photos. Enjoy!

If you missed it, previous Moment updates can be found here. (password: #makemoments).

Thank you!

Marc & Moment team.


Happy New Year!

I hope your 2014 was fantastic and you are ready to take on 2015. Here at Moment we’re looking forward to another year of learning, exploring, and making history.

Coming down from the holiday high, it’s clear that Moment’s current product line is perfect for the gifting season. December was another record setting period, growing 100% month over month to become our first $200K month.

What we found most interesting over the past 60 days is the purchasing behavior differences between first time visitors and repeat visitors. Repeat visitors purchased 20% more per month and have a conversion rate that is over 2x as high. It tell us there is plenty of opportunity to increase first time purchase conversion, while coming up with a series of touch points to bring people back to the site.

Need Help

Any recommendations on brands that have a strong peer to peer selling model and/or strong loyalty programs. We think enabling our existing customers will be a powerful channel going forward, but want to learn from those who do it well.

Business Update
December ended even better than we thought. Not only did we blow past $150K, but went right by $200K on our way to $231K. Another personal best, customers were purchasing right up to our guaranteed shipping dates.

We’ve started to peel back the layers on our December traffic. If you benchmark our December channels against other shopping sites (using Google Analytic’s tools) you can see we rank high for direct word of mouth customer acquisition and low for paid opportunities.

We did start to run some google search ads and basic retargeting over the last three weeks. Google Shopping was the big winner. We also found success in creating device specific landing pages so if someone searched for Nexus and Lens they would land on a page that only had Nexus 5 photos.

We spent a lot of December testing a series of small changes to the website to better understand what works to convert a customer. One big effort was around simplifying the purchase experience, especially with the cart and checkout flow. You can see before the changes we made on December 11th we were losing a massive percentage of cart visitors.

We learned a lot about shipping options and which convert customers. Having tried a series of ideas here is a bit of what we discovered:

  • Conversion is higher if shipping totals are on the checkout page versus the cart page.
  • 3 Day shipping at $20 in the US was too expensive. At $15 we converted at a much higher rate.
  • Having free shipping promotions and free shipping after X dollars, worked. Right now we have free shipping over $75.
  • If you put the number of “days” a shipping option takes, people expect the product to show up x number of days later and are upset if it doesn’t arrive on time. Seems obvious, but important to learn.

Speaking of shipping, we also learned a lot about logistics. Using the global post office to ship anything, is a terrible idea during the holidays. Before December orders shipped via the postal system would take 6-10 days to arrive around the world. During December it was highly variable, taking sometimes 2-3x as long. We’re definitely looking at new logistics options for 2015.

Offering a Seattle pick-up option over the holidays was a fun way to meet several of our Moment customers. It was nice to put faces to names as Seattle customers were able to pick up their order for free.

The Moment App continues to have about 130 daily active users. We’re starting to see a nice pattern of repeat users who are spending more time in the app, completing more goals. We now have a versioning plan over the next 6 months so we can start promoting the app with consistent stories. To date we have just told our customers about the app through an email after purchase.

Instagram growth percentage slowed for us over the past 14 days. With the holiday season, we haven’t had any collaborations going on, which has been a big driver for IG growth. Already planning out 2015 with the Collective, we have something significant we will be able to talk about soon, which will create the quality and quantity of content we need to really drive social.

Too bad there aren’t any tools to show growth in Instagram tags. The #makemoments tag is up 40% over the past three weeks alone, now up to 15.8K photos. Here are a few of our favorite posts over the past few weeks.

Team Member Profile
Every update we cover another member of the Moment team.

Gary Roberts
A native of Cupertino, Gary is one of the best operational minds in the business. Having worked together at Contour, Gary is helping us a day a week at Moment to ensure that our supply chain and quality control processes are in place. When not traveling to Asia you can find him taking photos with his daughter, watching Liverpool, and enjoying his favorite sound tracks.


It’s too early to tell, but Moment might be a fantastic holiday business. The last three weeks have been telling in regards to just how “gift-able” Moment products are. Most intriguing of all is our potential next season to capitalize on a series of opportunities that we missed this year.

Of all the data we look at, this is the most interesting on how fast the business accelerates over the holidays. In a matter of days, revenue, conversion rates, and and transactions all took a noticeable leap forward.

Need Help
If you haven’t, please download the Moment App and leave a positive review in the app store.

Benchmarks on mobile apps both in growth and engagement metrics. We would like to understand what other apps expect, especially apps in the creative space.

Business Update
November was another best. We were up 78% from October.

And December is on track to surpass November. 12 days in and we are already at 88% of November’s number. It could be our first $150K month.

The big question on the table is what is driving our holiday sales. We haven’t yet had time to do a complete re-cap, but looking at the last three weeks we know a few things:

  1. Offers work. We provided our existing customers a discount and many of them stepped up to buy the lens they didn’t yet own. We also tested a one time offer for new customers and free shipping, both of which had successful conversion rates.
  2. Press is king. We have been featured in dozens of gift guides ranging from big tech publications like Buzz Feed to world renowned photographers like Austin Mann.
  3. Instagram works but it’s hard to measure. We get a lot of traffic through the link on the top of our profile but we believe a lot of people engage with us on Instagram and then directly search for the brand.
  4. Email has a lot of potential. We just started sending customer emails with content and offers over the past few weeks. And in the last few days started capturing new email addresses from website visitors. We expect to be much more sophisticated next year both in content and email engagement.

We have a lot of work to do with the Moment App both in adding more features and engaging our users. We are shipping updates about every two weeks, which is a nice cadence, but have serious work to do on refining user engagement. The app gets really good once we connect the lenses and case together, so until then we have to continue to learn what brings our users back.

The team continues to crush it on customer support. Maintaining a first response time under 7 hours, especially during the holidays, is a testament to how hard they are working. We aren’t too far off from being able to say we have great customer service.

Instagram continues to work. We are starting to review metrics on a weekly basis to be able to answer the question of “why.” At a high level, partnering with brands larger than ours and influencers with significant reach definitely make a difference in growing our follower base.

Brand collaborations are also working to engage users with rad stuff.

The #makemoments tag is up to 11.3K photos. Every week we pick two winners and call it #momentmade. The shots continue to improve, making selection a harder and harder process.

Team Member Profile
Every update we cover another member of the Moment team.

Richard Tait
Richard was one of the first to jump in with two feet. He helped to co-found Moment, offering his time, genius, and free office space when the idea was on a piece of paper. Although he is the CEO of Golazo full time, he still manages to find time to provide valuable insights and inspiration to the team. A serial entrepreneur, Richard built 14 startups at Microsoft and Co-founded Cranium games (a multi International toy industry game of the year winner), before founding Golazo. When not helping entrepreneurs you can find him exploring the Northwest with his three beautiful children.


We believe that great products are made on purpose. It takes a lot of practice to become the best in the world at it, but at Moment we are committed to perfecting this craft.

Whether the product is hardware or software we follow the same process.

  • Interviews – constantly watching how customers solve problems today with their existing tools.
  • Customer Journey – mapping these problems to understand the opportunity before, during, and after.
  • Refine – the customer journey into product versions we can build over time.

A few days ago we launched our first software product, the Moment App. Focused exclusively on capture, this app is the beginning of enabling people to capture better pictures. This is our V1.0, but we are excited about the potential of this product. Especially when we connect it down the road to our Lenses and Case (2015).

We do need your help to download the app and leave a positive review!

When using the app be sure to try out these features:

  • Swipe your finger left and right across the screen to adjust the light.
  • Swipe your finger up and down across the screen to adjust focus.
  • Double tap to split focus and exposure.
  • Open the drawer on the bottom right to try an assignment.

Need Help
Please download the Moment App and leave a positive review in the app store.

Business Update
November is the best start we’ve ever had to a month. 21 days into the month we are already at $61,679 which is only $4K less than we did in all of October.

The growth in November is driven by three things.
1. Our continued growth in Instagram engagement and exposure.
2. Brand collaborations, which get the Moment brand in front of thousands of new customers.
3. Increased press coverage that continues to be positive.

Web traffic last 30 days (pdf)
Web traffic last 7 days (pdf)

In preparation for the holidays we have been busy improving the Moment website. We moved the back end to a new hosting platform that is optimized for WordPress and launched a new design that is shopper friendly. We are still improving our photography and building out a few new pages, but this is a major improvement from what we had. We still have work to do, but our page speeds with the new site have dramatically improved. In blue below, you can see that we now have 37.5% of our pages loading in under three seconds versus only 20.1% with the old site. We will continue to go after this.

Email marketing is a key piece of our efforts going in to the holidays and since our last update we have taken major steps forward. Not only have we designed some beautiful templates for a variety of email campaigns we plan to run, but we have started shipping our first email on a consistent basis. We now have a rich welcome email going out to new customers 5 days after purchase which is garnering a +75% open rate.

We have reached our customer support goal of responding to customers within 12 hours. Even though we say we are only open from 9am-6pm pst, we have been creating shifts that cover morning, early evening, and late night. It has helped us to bring our first response to under 7 hours!

We recently launched one of our larger brand collaborations with Artifact Uprising. We helped in launching version 2 of their mobile photography tips, which includes a give away form Moment lenses. This has resulted in thousands of new email address that we can market to during Q4. You can check it out here.

Our continued success on Instagram is promising. The focus on curators, collaborations, and picking two photos every week from the #momentmade feed is working both in growing our follower base and maintaining high engagement.

We’ve had two more guest curators, @juliamanchik and @ajragasa. They have done an amazing job of engaging our followers while posting inspiring photos. Below are a few of their more popular photos.

The #makemoments tag is up to 8.6K photos. Every week we pick two winners and call it #momentmade. The last two winners have been breathtaking shots.

Team Member Profile
Every update we cover another member of the Moment team.

Amanda Kirk
Amanda is two weeks into being part of the team and is already making a massive impact. A native of San Francisco, she moved up to Seattle to attend the University of Washington where she studied photography and communications. When not cranking on Moment support you can find her exploring PNW, attending art galleries, and hanging out with friends.


Learning to win takes practice. Although we would love to believe that every startup is born to succeed, it takes a lot preparation to be great.

October represents our first step forward in learning how to win. Setting a goal, organizing our efforts, and making progress is an important first step.

Of everything we have accomplished in October, our Instagram follower growth is a great representation of what it means to win. A 26.55% growth demonstrates that when we focus we can make meaningful progress.

Need Help
We are continuing to look for brands that we can create cross marketing collaborations with. Introductions to brands with social reach that live at the intersection of design, travel, and outdoor would be much appreciated.

Business Update
October was our best month yet. At $65,358 on 710 customers we had a solid result. Even if growth was only 5% month over month, making forward progress is a key aspect in learning how to win.

Even better is that we installed some basic analytics around the business so we can understand our customers, how much they spend, and the impact on our bottom line.

*note you can click on the image to see the full size.

Along with customer growth we are encouraged by the dramatic improvement in our gross margins over the past 90 days. Growing from Kickstarter sales at 23% gross margins to October at just over 60%.

*note you can click on the image to see the full size.

A key accomplishment for us in October was creating quarterly financials. In order to do this we spent about a month reconciling all 7,147 orders, adjusting our parts in process to final inventory numbers, and making sure our expenses were properly cataloged. This is a key step in taking Moment from a product to a business. You can download a copy of our non audited financials here.

Customer acquisition continues to be driven by non paid marketing efforts. Through September we have spent about $3.80 to acquire a customer, much of which has come through providing free product to key influencers. We expect that to change dramatically over the next two months as we look to turn up the volume.
Web traffic last 30 days (pdf)
Web traffic last 7 days (pdf)

Looking at the rest of our key metrics we are happy with the results. The biggest driver in growth for both social reach and engagement, has been the organization of our content efforts on Instagram. We now have working quarterly and daily content calendars, which ensures that we share inspiring photography stories on a daily basis.

*note you can click on the image to see the full size.

You can download a full competitive analysis document here, which is created by our friends at Rival IQ. They have an awesome product that helps companies benchmark themselves. We are choosing to benchmark ourselves against one direct competitor and two additional brands that do a fantastic job with their social efforts.

Continued good news on the iPhone 6 front. We are now shipping! Not only are we really excited about the quality of the plate on both the iPhone 6 and 6+ devices, but we shipped two weeks early.

We had our second guest curator, @jeffkmarsh, on the Moment Instagram handle this past week. Jeff did an amazing job of posting rich photos with compelling stories. You can read a full re-cap of his week on the Moment Journal.

We now pick two weekly winners for #momentmade from the #makemoments feed. The photos people are sharing definitely inspire us on a daily basis.

Team Member Profile
Every update we cover another member of the Moment team.

Wes Wirth
A native to Seattle, Wes lives in one of the coolest places in the city…on a house boat! When he’s not enjoying the beautiful view from his deck, you can find him exploring the local mountains. An awesome electrical engineer, Wes is leading our efforts on the Moment Case. We can’t wait for you to see his final work.

OCTOBER 18TH, 2014

Getting better at the little things.

It’s a key mantra for the team as individual members and as a collective whole. Not to say that creating discipline and consistency is easy, but we are committed to the diligence it takes to create a scalable foundation.

The previous two weeks are filled with lots of small details we want to get better at so we can continue to evolve Moment from a successful product to a successful company.

Need Help
We are gearing up for our big holiday push so we are looking for a handful of brands with large social followings that would be interested in doing some cross-marketing. In particular we are looking for brands at the intersection of design, travel, and outdoor.

Business Update
October has been consistent on a daily basis. Comparing this first 15 days of October ($31,794) to September($16,156) and August ($27,376) we are up 96% and 16% respectively. The last 90 days shows that sales are driven by news oriented events (new product announcements and product reviews).

October (17 days) – $36,056 on 472 customers
September – $60,316 on 755 customers
August – $62,144 on 480 customers
July – $44,561 on 351 customers
June – $12,454 on 129 customers
May – $9,537 on 88 customers
Apr – $9,191 on 87 customers

New press articles continue to be our number one driver of traffic and customer conversion. To support this, we are doubling down with a PR campaign targeted at holiday guides and shot lead opportunities.
Last 30 days (pdf)
Last 7 days (pdf)

Moving from the strategy to win (two updates ago) to how we define success (last update), here are our goals for the next three months. Creating quarterly goals is still a new practice for the team, especially in getting the right balance between difficulty and achievable.

We are constantly working to improve our team efficiency. Removing email and structuring our day have been helpful steps forward. Here is how we play the game as a team.

  • Quarterly off-site with quarterly goals.
  • Bi-monthly sprints that start every Tuesday, tracked in Trello.
  • Daily standup at 10am.
  • Daily collaboration window from 1-3pm.
  • We replaced email with Slack.
  • We rely on google docs and G Drive to keep ourselves organized.

Good news on the iPhone 6 front. The first 10 samples came off the tool and they fit like a glove on both the iPhone 6 and 6+ devices. This is a big step for us, nailing a difficult part on a first attempt off the tool. We are still on target to ship to our customers by the second week of November.

Customer service continues to improve. We were at 17 hours this past week for first response time, which is moving closer to our goal of 12. This is a +500% improvement from where we sat six weeks ago.

In addition to better customer service, we have created internal processes that now enable us to ship new orders within 48 hours. We still want to improve the shipping options we have available, but making it a daily practice to clear the order queue is an important step.

We are heads down closing out Q3 to create our first quarterly financials. We have a part time CFO providing a few hours a week to help us reconcile all of our pre-orders into produceable financials, including documenting of our internal accounting processes.

We are starting to work on organizing our content efforts. Along the lines of making small steps forward, we launched our first Instagram contest with Passion Passport. It was a week long contest where the winners each received a set of Moment Lenses. The results were promising. Our Instagram follower count increased by over 10% and traffic from Instagram to our website was up by 30%.

We had our first guest curator, @zach_reed, on the Moment Instagram handle this past week. This is something new we are trying to help us reach our goal of a post per day on Instagram.

Two more #momentmade winners were picked from the #makemoments feed. The photos keep getting better and better.

Team Member Profile
Every update we cover another member of the Moment team.

Zach Reed – @zach_reed
A native of the Pacific Northwest, Zach recently joined the team full time. The youngest member of the group, 20 years old, he is already a staple within the PNW Instagram community. Helping to dramatically improve our customer service we are excited to add both is creative genius and detailed work ethic to the team. You can find him on Instagram @zach_reed.


iPhone 6 mania continued at Moment the past two weeks. First confirming compatibility and then accepting pre-orders, we had a record week of sales.

Need Help
An awesome front end developer. I realize that great developers are like asking for snow in the desert, but it’s worth a shot. We’re looking for a front end developer, with e-commerce experience, that is passionate about photography.

Business Update
We announced pre-orders for iPhone 6 and 6+. And then the demand crashed the website. We were both proud and disappointed, but we did realize that when your website crashes you get to email everyone again the next day. If we were smart enough to think of this in advance we might have been tempted to try it.

September – $60,316 on 755 customers
August – $62,144 on 480 customers
July – $44,561 on 351 customers
June – $12,454 on 129 customers
May – $9,537 on 88 customers
Apr – $9,191 on 87 customers

September was behind August because of uncertainty around iPhone 6. We did $26K in the first 24 days of the month and $34K in the last six days. Our number of customers was much higher with about 200 existing Moment customers pre-ordering a new $10 mounting plate for their iPhone 6/6+ device. This is our first repurchase opportunity with customers and are interested to watch how this grows over time.

Going into Q4 we want to increase our website conversion rates to maximize our ability to capture new customers. Part of that effort will show in the coming weeks with improved landing pages, SEO efforts, and targeted advertising. For now we have started to tinker with our Facebook ads, which has already improved our overall website conversion rate from less than 1% to over 3%, making these more profitable sales.
Last 30 days (pdf)
Last 7 days (pdf)

Last update we talked about our strategy to lead the mobile photography market. The next step was defining success and how we measure it. We are focused on three things:

1. Velocity: the speed at which our reach is growing.
2. Engagement: how engaged our followers and happy our customers are.
3. Cash: proving this is an amazing business.

These metrics are on the wall and we will refine them over time as we better understand the business.

Over the last two weeks have spent a lot of time improving our customer service. We recognize that for Moment Direct to be a success in Q4 we have to deliver amazing service, in particular our first response has to be within a few hours of receiving an email. To do this we improved our support process, how we manage cases, and even added a second body to the effort. September saw a +30% growth in emails received and despite this we dramatically improved our first response time from 95 hours (terrible) to 19 hours (better). Our next goal is to get this under 12 hours.

We held our first customer meet-up in NYC last Friday. It was a great chance to connect with Moment customers and local Instagram influencers. We learned a lot and look forward to doing more of these events in the near future.

The hash tag we are driving, #makemoments, is up to 44 posts per day and now over 3,860 posts in total. While our Instagram handle is about to pass 10K followers. Here are a few of the latest customers posts that we featured on our feed.

Team Member Profile
Every update we cover another member of the Moment team.

Bradley Castaneda
Born and raised just outside of Seattle, Bradley is one of the premier adventure photographers on Instagram. An avid hiker and mountaineer on the weekends, he joined the Moment team to inspire people with his amazing photos and beautiful designs. Having joined the first week of September, we are really excited to have him. His mouth watering photos can be found on Instagram @bradleycastaneda.


What an intense few weeks. The potential changes to iPhone 6 served as the largest risk to our Q4 results. We’re happy to confirm that our existing lenses work perfectly with both the iPhone 6 and 6+. It’s like they were made for one another.

Need Help
A repeat from last week, we are still looking for a quantitative marketing genius who can advise on our customer acquisition funnel. Ideally anyone that has a lot of experience buying ads, placing content, and maximizing conversion rates.

Business Update
The unknown factors around the iPhone 6 lowered our run rate in September. The good news is we have +500 email addresses of customers who want to buy when the iPhone 6 details are confirmed. The bad news is those are sales we don’t yet have.

September – $21,725 on 176 customers
August – $62,144 on 480 customers
July – $44,561 on 351 customers
June – $12,454 on 129 customers
May – $9,537 on 88 customers
Apr – $9,191 on 87 customers

Web traffic continues to be driven by press coverage, Facebook, and Instagram.
Last 30 days (pdf)
Last 7 days (pdf)

On Friday we were able to confirm that our lenses are compatible with iPhone 6. This is a very big deal! We will have to make a new mounting plate, which will take about 4-6 weeks to bring to market, but now we can begin taking iPhone 6 orders. We built an iPhone 6 page on our website so everyone can follow along.

We posted our iPhone 6 compatible news on Instagram and Twitter last friday. Both posts were our most engaged posts in the history of the company.

We have shipped all of our existing orders. Even more exciting, is that this week we are finally moving from pre-order to being fully in stock. It will be interesting to watch both our sales and conversion rates now that we can ship with in 48 hours and there is no additional risk around iPhone 6.

Over the last three weeks we have been working on our strategy to win the mobile photography market. Having an engaging brand and great products isn’t enough to win. Success comes down to our ability to execute. Everything we are doing in the company comes down to this single slide.

*note you can click on the image above to see a larger version

To explain our key initiatives

  • Product Engine – Focusing first on capture we are building a system (lenses, case, and app) that together enable people to enhance their creativity the camera in their pocket. Internally we think of our process as a product engine – able to understand the core customer needs and turn these into products that customers love.
  • Moment Direct – A powerful direct to consumer platform that is mobile first, enables our customers to capitalize on the question “hey what is that”?, and makes Moment available for sale everywhere people are purchasing life’s experiences.
  • Community – Living at the intersection of mobile, photography, fashion, and design, we are developing unique content that both inspires and converts to new Moment customers. Anchored by the Moment Collective (our influencers) and Moment Ambassadors (street team), we are working to perfect our marketing recipe of content driving customer acquisition.
  • Company – To build a rad company with people who share our values, live mobile photography, and want to win.
    The team we have today can deliver the product engine and stoke out the community. Our biggest focus the coming six months is to build the team that can deliver on Moment Direct.

In building a rad company, our success will largely be based on our ability to mold the group from a collection of individuals to a team that executes at the highest level. To build this foundation we believe that we must unplug together, at least once a quarter, for a company off-site. These mini adventures enable us to build trust, discuss our team dynamics, and come up with ways we can improve.

Snow Lake Off-Site
(password: #makemoments)

The hash tag we are driving, #makemoments, is picking up momentum. Even more powerful is customers that don’t even have Moment lenses are posting to this hashtag and engaging in the discussion. The photos shared are starting to get really good! Every week we feature a single photo on our Instagram feed. Here are a few of the latest.

We made our second hire, Wes Wirth. He has been working with us for free the past three months, but now is officially joining the team. He is a super talented Electrical Engineer who is heads down working on the Moment Case. We are now up to seven full time people.

Team Member Profile
Every update we cover another member of the Moment team.

Henry Romano
A native of the Pacific Northwest, Henry has been leading our customer support efforts. An avid weekend traveler his passion for people, photography, and service are a fantastic combination for the team. The only negative is he is leaving us in November to travel around the Pacific Ocean on a motorcycle. You can find him on Instagram @shdro.


Welcome to another Moment update. To those of you who are new, I send out an update every few weeks on our progress with the business.

Thanks in advance for reading!

Need Help
We would appreciate introduction to anyone that is an expert at buying domain names, especially ones that are being squatted on. The larger brand we are building is Moment, not Moment Lens.

We are looking for a quantitative marketing genius who can advise on some of our customer acquisition tactics. Ideally anyone that has a lot of experience buying ads, placing content, and maximizing conversion rates.

Business Update
We are ecstatic to have closed a $1.5M seed round with some amazing investors! The group brings the experience we need in hardware, social, e-commerce, and brand. They include…

With the closing of the funding, we are now building out a six month plan against the total capital raised. We will be able to share it with the group in the coming weeks.

Monthly revenue continues to increase month over month. The last week of August we raised the price of our lenses form $80 to $99 so we are anxious to see how it affects our conversion rates. $99 is the right price to maximize margin and provide room for future resellers, but it may be too expensive of a price to drive the customer volume we would like to see.

  • Apr – $9,191 on 87 customers
  • May – $9,537 on 88 customers
  • June – $12,454 on 129 customers
  • July – $44,561 on 351 customers
  • August – $62,144 on 480 customers

Web traffic continues to be driven by press coverage, Facebook, and Instagram.

We are down to less than 500 open customer orders to fulfill. What’s left are a handful of Kickstarter orders and customer pre-orders. By the end of next week we will have inventory in stock. It’s an important milestone because we can take our product off of a pre-order status and begin to measure the true demand.

On Tuesday we will be watching the Apple announcements closely to hear what they announce for iPhone 6. Based on leaked photos it definitely looks like we will need a new mounting plate to make our lenses compatible, but we won’t know the true impact until we get our hands on a functioning iPhone 6. The impact of this phone is the largest risk to our Q4 sales. A new plate takes 4-6 weeks to bring to market. While new glass in the lenses takes 10-12 weeks. The whole team will be together on Tuesday to make an action plan.

We made our first hire, Bradley Castaneda. He is a software/app designer and photographer with over 40K Instagram followers. He had been working on the Moment app part time and now that he is joining the team on a full time basis we have high expectations for the app and e-commerce purchasing experience. You can follow him on Instagram here.

Over the past two weeks we have had some solid press coverage.

Customer photos posted to #makemoments are now being selected and featured once a week through Instagram and our blog. We didn’t realize it at the time, but the first customer we selected also happened to be the reviewer for F Stoppers Magazine.

Jeff Marsh, one of the Moment Collective members recently traveled to Alaska and wrote up a beautiful story on Exposure. The post received over 12K views. You can read the full story here.

Team Member Profile
Every update we cover another member of the Moment team.

RJ Lincoln
The resident mechanical engineer, RJ has been working on Moment from the very beginning. Previously part of Synapse Development, RJ is a young, talented engineer. Since working on the lenses and all of the mounting plates he has been heads down on quality and supply chain logistics. When not working on Moment you can find him hanging out with family, attending Mariners games, and kicking it with Wally, his golden retriever. You can follow him on Instagram here.

AUGUST 17TH, 2014

We have several new readers this month. To everyone that is new, I provide a bi-monthly update about Moment. I expect these updates to improve over time as we mature as a business. I also expect more metrics to rise to the surface once our systems are fully in place.

Need Help
We are excited to be working with Foundry Group as a part of their FG Angel Syndicate on Angel List. We are pushing to go live by Wednesday, which means we need your help!

  • Follow us on Angel List.
  • If you invested in Moment, please reply to the confirmation email I sent through Angel List.
  • Please write a short reference about Moment. Mention of your excitement about the the team, mobile photography market, and vision would be appreciated.

We are looking for a part time controller who can share some time on a monthly basis to double check our financial entries and process. Any recommended names of people in Seattle would be appreciated. I’m looking for someone who…

  • Lives in Seattle.
  • Is available to provide partial hours every month.
  • Has startup experience with a physical product business.

Business Updates
We are days away from closing +$1M seed round and we couldn’t be more excited! This capital will enable us to reach market fit. Everyone defines this differently, but we prefer to think of it as the point that we understand how to profitably reach a new customer. For those of you that haven’t yet heard the bigger vision for Moment, you can read this narrative (http://momentlens.co/narrative) . (password: goldenhour).

New orders continue to increase month over month. We expect these numbers to improve as we get closer to being fully in stock.

  • Apr – $9,191 on 87 customers
  • May – $9,537 on 88 customers
  • June – $12,454 on 129 customers
  • July – $44,561 on 351 customers
  • August – $34,355 on 277 customers

Currently our systems each have their own dashboards and we haven’t yet tied them together into a single analytics view. We expect to do this after the summer months, probably moving to RJ metrics. So for now here is a link to a pdf of our google analytics dashboard.

We continue to ship Kickstarter orders. We have now shipped about 3,000 orders with about 1,500 to go. Next we will move to pre-order customers. The current plan is to ship…

  • Kickstarter orders – by the last week of August
  • Pre-orders – within the first two weeks of September

Fulfilling all of these orders is part of our first production run of 11K lenses. Which means that with this run we are working out all of our manufacturing kinks. As part of this process we have decided to continue with 100% inspection on all lenses. Normally at this scale we would do sample inspections, but we decided that continuing 100% inspection was the right thing to do. We want people to have an amazing customer experience.

Product quality and customer response continues to be really positive. People are loving the out of box experience, fit on their phones, and clarity of the pictures they can capture. You can find initial customer photos on Instagram under #makemoments.

Over the coming weeks we will shift our attention to customer engagement. Our goal is to help them gain confidence in using Moment, while teaching them how to take better pictures. We plan to do this through challenges, inspiration, and educational content.

We are starting to pick up steam on our Beta app. We sent another update this past week and our goal is to create a few more builds before releasing this into the wild. Our targets is the first half of September, which coincides with all of our initial orders having been shipped. The app is focused on capturing better pictures and verifying that you got the shot. If you want to be included on the beta list, please reply to this email.

We recognize that to become a company that impacts the world, it takes a village of supporters. With that in mind we started to organize our best 25 influencers into a single group that we’re calling the Moment Collective. We started inviting people this week and so far the response has been fantastic. Our process for creating this group is to work with lots of potential influencers who have social reach and live at the intersections of mobility, photography, design, and fashion. Those that rise to the top in engagement and excitement for the brand we officially move to the Collective. We will share more about this group in future updates.

We like to end every update with some inspiring photos captured by our customers.




Team Profile
Every update we introduce one more member of the team. We have 5 full time people and a handful of talented friends who share a day a week of their time.

Josh Baxley
The man behind our beta app, Josh is a picture taker and avid mountain climber. Originally a self taught engineer, we worked together at Contour where we handled all of camera to mobile app integration (iOS + Android). He is most excited about the new controls coming in iOS 8 and shipping this app. When not cranking on Moment, you can find him scaling real mountains around the Pacific Northwest.

JULY 27TH, 2014

Welcome to another Moment update. My goal is to provide a consistent format every two weeks including the areas we need help with, the latest business updates, and team member introductions.

Need Help
I’d appreciate any introductions to entrepreneurs that have successfully raised money on Angel List. We are talking to a few syndicates and would love to learn best practices from those that have already been successful.

Business Updates
We have now shipped the first 900 orders. Fulfilling orders at this stage is especially painful because we don’t yet have all of the parts in stock. Still waiting on the last mounting plates to arrive (this week) we’ve had to prioritize the list based on what we can ship first. On top of that customers love to change their shipping address and add more to their orders, which provides for a lot of manual processes that will soon be over with.

We still have over 4,300 orders to fulfill and are prioritizing shipments based on..

  • Kickstarter orders (not Galaxy S5 or Nexus 5) – by the end of July
  • Kickstarter orders (Galaxy S5 and Nexus 5) – first week of August
  • Pre-orders (shipping based on order date) – beginning first week of August

The customer response so far has been incredibly positive. We have been pleasantly surprised by the number of unboxing photos being posted and the glowing tweets we are receiving. Customers are just learning how to include the lenses in their mobile photography tool set, but we’re already excited with what we are seeing. https://tagboard.com/momentlens

Production continues to move along. Despite the testing we put in place, we did discover a few lens fit issues that caused us to stop and retest everything before moving forward. Right now we’re at less than a .5% defective rate on product shipped, which is really good for a first production run. You hate to have any failures, but that never happens with hardware.

Because Moment lenses are just starting to arrive we are working on a three part email campaign that will trickle out to customers based on when they received their lens. It is broken into three phases to help them from assembly to capturing inspiring images.

The last week has been our busiest customer service week of all time. The 60% increase in case numbers is largely driven by people changing their order and/or wanting to know when their lenses will ship. We have been setting up FAQ and macro responses in Desk (our support tool) to help streamline the process.

We helped to hold our first Instagram event in NYC this evening. In partnership with ONA Bags and Charity Water, we were on the ground putting lenses into people’s hands. Overall it was a fantastic experience and incredibly rewarding. We heard lots of really positive comments about the product and had dozens of pictures uploaded to Instagram with Moment tagged.

Team Profile
To start introducing you to the team working on Moment I thought I’d introduce one person per update. We have 5 full time people and a handful of talented friends who share a day a week of their time.

Michael Thomas – @opdev
Michael is one of the co-founders of Moment and the leading optical geniuses behind the lenses. Over the past 20 years Michael and his partner Russ have been designing and producing some of the world’s best lenses. We are excited to have both of them involved from the beginning as founders and investors. When not designing optical systems, you can find Michael taking pictures, playing blues guitar, and spending time with his beautiful family.

JULY 13TH, 2014

Action Items
I will be in SF July 17th/18th and NYC July 28th – August 1st. If there are any influencers (photography, artists, musicians, etc) that I should meet or angel investors who would be interested in Moment please let me know.

We started shipping the first 550 orders from Hong Kong directly to our backers. It will take us all of July to fulfill Kickstarter orders and most of August to finish the pre-orders.

Our first ‘post Kickstarter’ press article hit in Outside Magazine. It led to our best week in pre-orders, which proves what we learned through Kickstarter; PR drives sales. We sold about $14K with just over 100 customers on a 2% conversion rate. We have been cautious about sending early units to press so as not to upset Kickstarter backers who would assume that we are giving away their product. We expect to receive plenty of press coverage late into the summer months as we start sending units to press.

Benedict Evans posted one of the best pieces I have read, that quantifies the growth in image capture. It’s staggering to have over $3B camera phones in pockets sharing over 1 trillion photos per year. Even more interesting than sheer magnitude is how consumer behavior is changing from one of documentation to communication. Pictures are becoming increasingly more important in consumer’s lives as a form of expression.

Team Profile
To start introducing you to the team working on Moment I thought I’d introduce one person per update. We have 5 full time people and a handful of talented friends who share a day a week of their time.

Erik Hedberg – @e21
Erik is one of the co-founders of Moment and a talented young designer. He is driving most of our key product decisions while managing all of our design touch points. When he’s not cranking on Moment you’ll find him exploring the PNW either hiking, mountaineering, or snowboarding. His Instagram feed puts the rest of us to shame.