Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Flow Media Aims to Strike Chord with Local and National Business

The Flow Media team learned the value of UI Venture School on day one. They had an abundance of passion and ideas, but little-to-no customer discovery or business analysis.

“Venture School taught us to back up our decisions with actual research and findings from customer discovery,” said Gabe Erickson, President and CEO of Flow Media. “Every single interview with a customer helped clarify our vision and how we would execute as a business. Without Venture School, we would be making big decisions based solely on feelings and not a true understanding of our customers’ wants and needs.”

The business idea for Flow Media stemmed from Erickson seeing a disconnect between marketing and public relations, and telling human stories.

“Flow Media was developed out of a frustration with how local stories were told and how marketing messages came across,” Erickson said. “We thought there has to be a more evocative, authentic way to capture stories that will allow people to truly get to know each other and their communities. There also has to be a more genuine way of reaching audiences without treating them like an object. Stories were our answer.”

The Flow Media Venture School cohort consisted of, Faraz Shah the Chief Design Officer; Courtney Ball, the Chief Story Officer; Josh Booth, the Chief Visual Officer; and Heather Gierut, the Chief Communications Officer. Erickson described his team as the Avengers of storytelling.

“I’m like Captain America…on my own, my movies are okay, but when you get all the Avengers together with our various superpowers, we can do so much more to impact the world,” Erickson said.

While their business has found a home in the Iowa City market, Flow Media hopes to expand to a broader audience in the next year.

“We hope to have a great first year, building the company, growing our team, satisfying our clients, and telling great stories on a consistent basis,” Erickson said. “I would love to do some stories on a broader scale: Iowa, Midwest, nationwide even. I believe great stories have universal appeal, so I believe we can have a national presence budding in the next year or two.”