Remember MeeMeep? I covered their inventive business idea in News Blaze on 7th of March 2012. Well so impressed was I by their concept that I thought I would go back and find out a bit more from the MeeMeep team. I spoke to Jodie Emmett, business development and operations guru. Jodie makes sure MeeMeep runs smoothly with no road bumps.
We know that Rob first came upon the idea whilst stuck in traffic one day, as a serial entrepreneur Rob is active when it comes to implementing business ideas. Although MeeMeep a dot.com business was a totally new concept for him, as his background in setting up new initiatives have been in finance and the mortgage sector.
This didn’t sway Rob, he workshopped the idea with some friends and family and received such a wholehearted response that a small band of people swiftly agreed to become seed investors in the yet to be named business.
I asked Jodie what influenced the name MeeMeep; she says “The name MeeMeep represents a call to action MEEMEEP! It is an active and dynamic word and one that represents movement and action. So when you say MeeMeep, it comes out a bit like meeemeeeeeeeep!”
It’s true, it does, I get visions of roadrunners dashing up a highway carrying packages of varying size, depositing them with a smile and, MeeMeep! Picks up another and off he goes again.
The business planning then started with a few key people being brought on board to help shape the idea, early research indicated there was a huge gap in the courier/transport sector for this type of approach, here are a few of the facts that the team found out.
The majority of courier companies only operate in the business sector. So if you don’t carry a business account with them, they won’t be able to help you.
Transport companies focus primarily on large house moves. The delivery of one-off items such as beds, fridges, IKEA or EBay pickups or items that are not boxed or wrapped is too prohibitive on cost. This is especially true in the interstate sector.
Transport companies generally charge depot- to- depot fees, which are incurred by the customer. With a minimum call out rate of up to $200.
There is a significant army of contract couriers and delivery people (who operate as owner/drivers), looking for ways to backfill jobs and supplement their income. Do you know that courier vans spend half their time empty on the roads?
I asked Jodie how MeeMeep has grown since its launch.” Since its launch (in Beta), in October last year, MeeMeep has quickly gained traction with over 1600+ face book fans, 1700+twitter followers. This has translated into over 700 members joining up and 300 completed moving jobs being undertaken to date, and this all happened with us flying under the radar, it has only been in the last couple of weeks that we are actively promoting the concept.
I asked Jodie where the team see MeeMeep in 5 years time and what are the possibilities for MeeMeep on a global scale? “Our motto at MeeMeep is saving the world one move at a time, by this I mean MeeMeep’s grand plan involves reducing the amount of traffic and pollution on our roads, by tapping into people’s movements and connecting them with someone who may need something picked up and delivered. A type of ‘social courier’ if you like, where a small amount of planning and foresight can result in a win for the environment.
We are gearing up for our first round of investment funding in the next few months and overseas expansion is defiantly on our radar within a five year period. MeeMeep sits squarely within the new wave of collaborative consumption, a movement identified by TIME magazine as one of the “10 ideas that will change the world”. This is where emerging technologies enable the direct connection of people and in doing so disrupts outmoded ways of doing business.”
I had to ask Jodie what were the most bizarre or unusual moving requests they have had.
“Being able to cater for unusual, large or bulky items is what our movers do best. As such we have had lots of fun and unusual items moved on MeeMeep.” These have included a box of bubbles to Santa’s workshop, (I knew he was real), a hard drive from Sydney to Melbourne via plane and back again, a large dears head from Frankston to Hawthorn, rowing suits to a regatta for a big competition and a large industrial sign from Wodonga to Melbourne- urgent overnight request that was delivered by Mark from Needacourier, who had a truck passing through Wodonga at 8am the next morning.
And that last one would seem to sum up how smoothly MeeMeep operates.
Jodie also shared some of MeeMeep’s success stories with me here are just a few:
Charlie left his wetsuit at a friend’s beach house and managed to get it Meeped within two hours up the coast by Emma for $50-just in time to make it on the plane to Bali for his surfing trip. Emma was happy, as it off set her petrol costs and Charlie was happy as it saved him from buying a new one.
EBay girl had a box of Christmas presents delivered to Canberra from Melbourne by James who travels regularly to Canberra delivering kayaks. He was happy to do that for $40. And she got to package up what she wanted without having to worry about weight and size.
Murray is a young guy who operates his own building company. He travels around a lot and often has room in his Ute for extra items. Murray joined MeeMeep in December 2011 and has been actively moving jobs since then. In that time he has undertaken 10 jobs and earned over $700.
A successful business idea that looks set to continue and a winner all round, I think Meep it to me will be the new model of this century.