Friday, June 25, 2010

Reminiscing about the "old days"

File:Kozmo.png I was looking at some recent posts and tweets from various people discussing with them wishing that the service would come back.  After I get past the obvious indignation that "we are Kozmo, only new and improved", I also reminisce about some of the good and bad of the dot-com craziness.

There was a lot to love about Kozmo when it launched.  Joe Park came up with an incredibly crazy idea that you could go into a dial-up world and get people order their entertainment products online and then deliver them immediately.  While we knew that everyone thought we were insane, we also knew that the service was amazing and was light years better than anything available elsewhere.  And so we forged forward with a crazy dream and a lot of moxie.

You probably all know the rest of the story from there (if you don't, i highly recommend renting E-Dreams for the best view inside the rise and fall of the dot-coms).  Lots of money tossed in, some incredibly cute marketing, a great service....and an eventual crash.

Sit Back, Let Max Deliver
I picked up the gauntlet about 5 years ago to try to recreate and improve upon the magic of kozmo, without the eventual fall that occurred.  When we started, it was an even crazier idea than when Kozmo did it.  After all, Kozmo had "proven" that you could not make a viable business of an instant delivery service and we were "destined to fail in 6 months"....that was 5 years ago...

MaxDelivery stuck as close as possible to the original vision of a service that makes your life easier, getting for you all the things that you need everyday and delivering them in under an hour.  We even kept the fees low (only a $2.95 delivery fee) and prices competitive with your supermarkets to make it easy to choose us for your daily life.

We didn't just copy the old service - we added to Kozmo's original dream by focusing the service on getting you everything you need for your everyday life.   My basic philosophy is "if you still have to put your shoes on and go downstairs, we did not do our job"  Did we succeed in recreating kozmo's magic?  Did we improve upon it?  Let me know what you think.

I DO miss those commercials with the guy getting shot out of a cannon, though!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Fun Life of Small Businesses

I was reading an article today about one of our Best of New York partners, Jacques Torres Chocolates.  We've been working with Jacques for a long time and think the world of their chocolates - high end, gourmet chocolates, made right here in NYC.

The gist of this article is that Jacques was being sued by Hershey's because his "Champagne Kiss" truffles were some kind of infringment on "Hershey's Kisses"  First, as you can see below, the Champagne Kiss looks NOTHING like a hershey's kiss.
Hershey’s Tells Jacques Torres to ‘Kiss’ His Champagne Bonbons Good-bye     

Second, for anyone who has tasted the 2 of these chocolates, there would never be any confusion between the smooth silky flavor of Jacques chocolates and the .... (to be polite) somewhat less impressive taste of a Hershey's kiss.  Jacques would not be interested in copying their name and associating himself with chocolate that is, most would agree, inferior in quality and taste.

Just another day as a small business person trying to make a superior product and satisfy your customers.  You have to deal constantly with these small nuisances which have nothing to do with making your customers happy.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Eileens is back in stock!

EileensWe've got Eileen's Cheesecakes back in stock.

We're expanding the selection of the personal sized cheesecakes to all of their flavors. The only thing wrong with them is that they are killing my ability to watch my weight. The popularity of the cheesecakes has been amazing, so apparently I am not the only one having my waistline ruined by Eileen.

**Also, look for a new announcement coming soon about a fun new program by MaxDelivery. I'm tired of all the gloom and doom in the world these days and, while I can't actually make the problems in the Gulf better, we're going to try to bring some smiles to people over the next few months.

First Entry

People have suggested that we start a blog to muse over the vagaries of our unique service, along with announcing new and interesting things going on at I'll try to keep the commercialization aspect of the posting to a minimum and focus more on events and happenings in running a small and fairly unique business, but I'll spend a few minutes here going over what the company is (for those 98% of you who have never heard of us).

What is MaxDelivery?
MaxDelivery is an online store that has everything you need, delivered to your door in under an hour. At its heart, it's a simple proposition - save people from running to 3-4 local stores to pick up groceries, wine, drugstore items, etc and let them get some of their life back. Do it all for them in less time than it would take to do it themselves - less than an hour for all deliveries. On top of that, we are able to do it at prices competitive with the supermarket and with a low delivery fee ($2.95). So, in my opinion (and those of our customers), we are the best thing since sliced bread (and yes, we carry sliced bread and fresh-baked loafs too!)

Who am I?
My name is Chris Siragusa, the founder of the company. I started this business about 5 years ago in an attempt to create a service that I personally found more convenient than going to the local deli. No offense meant to the next-day supermarket services, but scheduling my grocery delivery for 2 hour windows 2 days from now just never seemed convenient to me - it was more like scheduling the cable-guy for service. I've built the service with the express goal of being able to live my entire life without having to set foot in a supermarket again (haven't had to go to one in about 3 years now!) and with enabling my ability to be lazy while avoiding take out food every night.

What will this blog be about?
Now that the basic marketing spin has been done, this blog will mostly focus on the day to day issues that come up with a service such as ours. I expect there will be some amusing anecdotes about ordering that we get periodically, some discussions about new products and things we are adding, and some discussions about running a small business in New York. Hopefully, there will be some feedback and comments to make this a little bit of a 2 way street, but we'll see how that goes if we can get some entertaining content going.

Welcome to the blog and thanks for reading.