News

We'll keep you updated on the latest news and information about JamBios. You'll find news mentions, press releases, events and activities, investment information, announcements and an occasional photo, video or podcast with JamBios spokesperson Henry Ian Cusick. You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter for daily and weekly updates.

For Press Inquiries, contact us at: hello@JamBios.com.
For Interview Requests with Henry Ian Cusick, please email: JamBios@sspr.com

JamBios Memory Gallery Exhibition

Annie Cusick Wook Introduces the JamBios Memory Gallery Exhibition for November 2017

Oct 18, 2017

Autumn Memories: Annie Cusick puts out a call for entries for the JamBios Memory Gallery. The online exhibition will include memory stories, poems, photographs and drawings with the topic of: Autumn Memories

Submit entries by registering a JamBio (free) at www.jambio.com.

Write or upload your original entry into a JamBios Chapter Section and select Reader: Memory Gallery memorygallery@jambios.com.

All entries should be submitted to the gallery no later than October 27th. Entries should be less than 1000 words, be original and be based on a real memory.

For more info follow us on twitter @jambiosinc and facebook www.facebook.com/jambiosinc.

 

Business, change, entrepreneurs, entrepreneurship, Startups, trends

How Entrepreneurship Has Changed Since the Year 2000

Sep 27, 2017

Conor Cawley from tech.co interviews Beth Carvin:

The only constant in the startup world is change. Whether your company has changed products, offices, or even CEOs, the ability to adapt to shifting trends defines successful entrepreneurs. And in the last 17 years, things have changed pretty dramatically. Fortunately, there are people out there that have seen it all and can provide you with the insight you need to succeed in the ever-changing business realm.

Recently, I sat down with Beth N. Carvin, cofounder and CEO of JamBios and Nobscot, to talk about the difference between entrepreneurship now and in the year 2000. Her first company, Nobscot, was founded in 2000, while JamBios was launched earlier this year, so she has some unique insight into what it took to be successful back then, and how that differs from success in the modern age.

As Carvin put it, there are four factors that have relevant differences between entrepreneurship now and in 2000. Take a look at what she had to say below:

Capital Requirements

As entrepreneurs today know, capital is a necessity to surviving, let alone succeeding. And while it may seem impossible to acquire now due to stingy VCs and saturated markets, things weren’t always that complicated.

“Starting a business in 2000 didn’t require that much money. When we started Nobscot, (an HR tech company) we put a small amount of money in a bank account. We focused on generating revenue as quickly as possible. We broke even and became profitable in less than a year from launch.

 

Today, starting a business still requires having a swift and realistic path to revenue but it generally takes a longer time to get there. With JamBios, our digital platform for memories, we are starting with 100x as much money.  We have to build up our user base. Even with a social site like JamBios that has virality built in it still requires a source of capital to fund operations and growth.”

Product

Product development is and has never been a constant science. With shifting consumer preferences and the ever-evolving technology landscape, it can be hard to nail down exactly what people want. However, one notable change has occurred since 2000: we care about design now. Like a lot.

“Product development has also changed substantially. In 2000, it was all about function over form. It didn’t matter what your product looked like as long as it was useful. Our initial web site for Nobscot was ugly! It didn’t matter though. Our technology was intuitive and powerful and HR executives loved it. That’s all that counted back then.

 

Today, we don’t have that luxury. Design is paramount. We started JamBios working with an outstanding design firm in the UK to help us get the right look. Along with hiring our first coders we also hired an in-house Creative Director to drive design. That is something we never would have considered back in 2000.”

Resource Availability

Unlike capital, resources were pretty scarce for budding entrepreneurs in 2000. Entrepreneurship was notably less popular and external support systems like corporate accelerators and local incubators were hardly at the avail of budding startups. That, however, is no longer the case.

“Back in 2000, there were not a lot of resources for tech startups outside of Silicon Valley. Today, most major cities have relatively vibrant tech communities, including Honolulu where we are based. We have tech accelerators that provide mentoring and access to funding. There are VCs looking to make local investments. We have coding boot camps to help train developers in the latest technologies. Most weekends are filled with coding challenges and tech networking events. It’s a very different start-up scene then back in 2000.”

Marketing

Marketing is never going to stay the same. Consumers are getting wise to the practices employed by companies around the world, leading to a well-informed, hard-to-trick customer base. Plus, with the advent of social media, things have gotten decidedly more complicated for budding businesses.

“When we first started Nobscot, search engine rankings were the singular most important marketing initiative. It was imperative to show up high in the rankings and it was a wonderful way to get new business. The majority of our clients came to us from searching and finding us through search engines. We worked hard at making sure our website had relevant content, interesting information, and linked to and from appropriate sources. We became experts in our industry (employee exit interviews) and became the go-to source for that niche.

 

Today, in addition to search engines, we have to master social media and develop creative ways to stand out from the crowd. For example, at JamBios we have a celebrity spokesperson, Henry Ian Cusick of the ABC TV show “LOST” and “The 100.”  We created a fun “Memory of the Week” activity to encourage new users to experience the pleasure of writing in their JamBios and learn how easy it is to invite others to read. We asked users write a favorite memory and invite Henry Ian Cusick to read their memory. He then selected his favorite memories and we placed them on our Facebook page. We encouraged people to invite their friends to read and “like” their favorites which helped us build up our Facebook followers. The campaign was integrated with Twitter as well.”

Read more interviews with entrepreneurs on TechCo

JamBios, savor the memories of your life and share them with others

Henry Ian Cusick – The star of Lost and The 100 explains JamBios

Sep 26, 2017

Actor Henry Ian Cusick on His Newest Project

 

Henry Ian Cusick – The star of Lost and The 100 explains JamBios, a new social platform that allows people to share their memories online. Ian is interviewed by  Global News Morning and tells the story of how he got involved with JamBios. 

Jambios, savor the memories of your life and share them with others

How to reconnect with your adult children

Sep 14, 2017

BETH N CARVIN SEPTEMBER 14, 2017 LIFESTYLE

If you have adult children, chances are, at some point in time you’ve experienced difficulties staying connected beyond trivial situations, like providing cooking tips or watching the game together.

We recently launched JamBios, a collaborative place to write and save the stories of your life. We’re quickly noticing how great of an impact sharing memories can have on developing deep and meaningful relationships.  Geographic location, life circumstances and reticent personalities can make it difficult to express feelings and develop deep connections, but sharing memories can help foster more meaningful conversations and experiences with our grown children.

Here are four lessons about the parent and (adult) child relationship I’ve learned since launching JamBios, and a few ideas for forming a deeper connection through reminiscing.

Use stories as a mediator

Shared storytelling allows grown children to understand the experiences that shaped our life. When you share stories of your life, your children can start to see you as an individual, with all the beauty and all the warts. They are able to appreciate you not just as a parent but as a person and eventually as a friend. Whether you write out your story or memories using a site like JamBios, or grab a pen and paper, journaling and sharing your stories with your loved ones can go a long way in connecting the pieces of the past and strengthening your ties in the future.

Ask deep questions

Don’t assume deep conversation happens on its own. Sometimes, it takes a little prompting. Try keeping notes of questions you want to ask or meaningful topics to discuss the next time you get together with your children. A delightful afternoon can be spent asking and answering memory questions together with your grown kids.  Questions can be light such as “how would you describe your childhood bedroom,” “Who was your favorite teacher” or “what was an embarrassing moment that happened at school,” or deep such as “what were you most afraid of growing up” or “were you ever bullied in school?” You might be surprised at how much each of you can relate to the other’s stories.  Don’t be afraid to open up. Your kids are grown now. Be honest. You don’t have to worry about setting a bad example.

Leverage the artefacts

You likely have artefacts from your past that are fun to share and talk about, from a scrapbook you kept when you were younger to old love letters. Showing your adult children these artefacts can elicit an emotional connection. It’s a wonderful experience for grown children to visualize you as a child or teenager and to see how much a particular experience or moment in time meant to you. Using a collaborative memory-preserving space like JamBios can help you create written words about a memory, too, which preserves memories and emotions for the future.

Shared memories

Memories of moments or events you both remember, even if from decades ago, can also be explored. Emotional bonds are formed when you re-live experiences together. Topics don’t really matter; any shared memories will do. Recalling a trip to Disney or the first time you went camping together as a family, or that time your child came home with a very bad (or very good) report card each make a good memory conversation starter. Shared memories from the past come alive when you revisit them each from your own perspective. Expect lots of laughter and maybe a few tears.

Telling your story

You don’t have to tell your story in chronological order, from your ancestors to the present day. It shouldn’t feel like hard work or drudgery. Instead you can regularly explore and enjoy your memories by simply writing thoughts down as they come to you. If you hear a song on the radio that reminds you of your college dorm parties or a smell that makes you think of summer camp, jot down the stories that come to mind. When you get in the habit of regularly recording your memory stories you’ll find it becomes easier and more natural. And when you’re ready, sharing these memories with your children can be the key to maintaining a deep connection.

Have you found it hard to maintain a relationship with your adult children?

A seasoned entrepreneur shares what's different about starting a business today.

I Launched My First Startup During the Dot-Com Boom. Boy, Have Things Changed

Aug 29, 2017

Beth N. Carvin - GUEST WRITER entrepreneur.com

In 2015, I decided to start a new entrepreneurial venture. The last time I had started a business was in 2000 when I co-founded Nobscot Corporation, a company that develops enterprise software for human resources. Nobscot continues today, with our team servicing medium and large companies globally. With that feather in our cap, my co-founder and I were ready to try again, this time on the consumer side. We created the idea for JamBios, an online platform to help people remember and write stories of their lives, together with friends and family. Except it was no longer 2000 and the startup world had changed significantly. We had to be ready to adapt as well.

Budgets are bigger.

The late 1990s were exciting times for technology startups. Everyone had ideas for “dot-coms” and wanted to become the next internet millionaire. (People thought in terms of millions, not billions, back then.) But, most people also wanted the stability of a traditional corporate job. Quitting a position to start an internet company was not something that most were willing to do. College grads had many opportunities from which to choose. Few people lived in their parents’ basements.

We started Nobscot on a shoestring, putting $10,000 in the bank. The startup tech community was at the very early stages in our area. Resources were minimal. There were no coding boot camps, no technology accelerators and very little venture capital investing. Women CEOs were rare. Access to capital was limited. On the plus side, it was 2000 and you didn't need much money to get started. These were the days of working out of your garage.

We converted a large room (not the garage) into a workable office space. We lived in a beach community and had what would now be called “scrum meetings” during morning walks on the beach. Conference Room A was a shade tree and the sand was our whiteboard. My co-founder and I did almost everything ourselves. You could build a tech business like that back then. It's not quite the same anymore.

For our new business, we have fancy “creativity inspiring” digs in the heart of downtown. The conference room has a table and chairs. It is a nice place for investors to visit.

Products are sleeker.

Back in the early days of online startups, product was all about function over form. Our technology had to be intuitive, easy-to-use and powerful. It didn't have to be pretty. Design thinking was not yet a part of the equation. I drew on a piece of paper what I wanted our flagship exit interview technology to do and my co-founder and software engineer built it to spec. We didn't have any outside or internal designers. It was ugly. But, it worked really well.

Today, great function with lousy form is not good enough. Entrepreneur evangelist Guy Kawasaki suggests that getting to market fast enough means that your early product is going to have elements that are cringeworthy. That is becoming less and less true. Your starting Minimal Viable Product (MVP) needs to look visually very, very good. Access to design talent either in-house or external is critical. In our new venture, we started working with a wonderful design firm in the U.K. called Big Fan Agency. Once we began putting together our team, we hired a very talented in-house creative director as employee number six. It was not something we expected to do, but was probably one of the wisest staffing decisions we have made so far.

Marketing is more complex.

Another drastic change between then and now has taken place in marketing. A decade and a half ago, Google was the only king in town. Marketing involved making sure your site would be easily found in the organic search engine listings. That meant creating useful content on the public website and strong PR outreach to trade publications. Cold calling was also a required sales tactic. I bought “yellow pages” directories for our initial target industries and made phones calls to HR executives. (Yes, it worked well. Our first mainland clients came from cold calls, including a large bank in the South and Campbell Soup Company.) Social media at the time consisted of online forums. I spent a lot of time on the Society for Human Resource Management bulletin board.

Today, getting to market requires a much stronger and more comprehensive plan. It requires going beyond the organic search engine placement and becoming an expert in paid search advertising. I was resistant to that for a long time. In addition to becoming an expert in all things Google, marketing efforts need to include social media. Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedInInstagram, Pinterest and Snapchat are where users are likely to spend a lot of time. Podcasts and videos are becoming important media to master. Influencers and influential publications need to be identified.

There's a lot more competition.

When starting Nobscot, competition was limited. It wasn't that hard to be seen. In 2015, 100 million business were launched globally, according to the GEM Global Report. We recognized that to be successful today we had to find creative ways to stand out from the crowd. That motivated us to invite Henry Ian Cusick, formerly a regular on ABC's Lost and currently on The 100, to join us as celebrity spokesperson when we serendipitously had an opportunity to meet him. His very creative wife, Annie Cusick Wood, a theater director and playwright, joined in as well.

While times have certainly changed from the late 1990s to today, amidst all these differences, there are some things that remain constant. Being an entrepreneur takes guts, fortitude and a whole lot of hard work. The top priority of building a business must always be on developing a topnotch team of people who care about the company and are passionate about the product or service. Creating a corporate culture of which you are proud, one that goes the extra mile for employees, customers and users, will always be the key to success whether in the past, the present or future.

 

Memory of the Week part 1: Henry Ian Cusick

"Memory of the Week" Starts Today!

July 10th, 2017

Henry Ian Cusick introduces the first exclusive activity for JamBios' users. In this video, users learn how they can participate and share a favorite memory with the star of ABC's "LOST" and "The 100." What's your story?
Register for free today

ThinkTech Talks Story with JamBios.Com

ThinkTech Talks Story with JamBios.Com

June 6, 2017

Beth and Ruby joined Jay Fidell of Think Tech Hawaii to talk about JamBios. They discuss storytelling and memories, collaborative writing platform, "crowd-sourcing memories""and more. You can listen to the full 30 minute broadcast here.

Restoring Memories Hawaii Business

Restoring Memories

May, 2017

by Emily Cardinali | Hawaii Business News

The JamBio for JamBios goes a little like this:

An entrepreneur with successful ventures sees ideas everywhere. As she walks down the street, Beth Carvin pulls ideas from her surroundings, her daydreams, and the people and things in her life.

She'd been a part of a family email chain, and one day her dad and his brother swapped stories about how they grew up in their dad's bar in Boston. Carvin and her family were hooked, clicking through tales of customers and barmaids and histories of a world they never knew.

On social media like Facebook and Snapchat, people post temporary marks of themselves. Carvin asked: Why can't these be more permanent? So Beth and her husband, Bruce Daly, co-founded JamBios, where a user writes a personal tale and can include others to add their perspectives and memories.

Carvin and Daly are also co-founders of Nobscot, a successful human resources technology company that simplifies the exit-interview process so companies can conduct them online. They thoughtfully established the business and tech side of JamBios, but, as in any good story, there was an unplanned element. Beth and her husband were selling their house in Kailua and, after the Realtor showed two clients the house, Beth wanted to give the homeowner's tour.

Cue in children's theater director Annie Cusick and her husband, "Lost" actor Henry Ian Cusick, now a star on TV's "The 100."

After the tour, the couple asked Beth what she did. As she described JamBios, "Ian had this little look on his face," Beth says. He had just finished filming "Rememory," a movie about a machine that extracts and records memories.

"My ears perked up," Carvin says. "That's a JamBio."

She asked the couple to help build the creative side, and Annie overflowed with ideas for chapter prompts and memory triggers. What was the view from the kitchen window of your mother's house? What sounds did you hear at night as a kid?

"You don't have to be a good writer to be a good storyteller," she says.

The website officially launched in May. Users work on what is called "My JamBio," where they create and write chapters of their lives. These chapters can cover anything from college to houses to cars. As the user crafts the story, friends and family can be invited to collaborate with their memories and perspectives.

For the Cusicks, this will allow their three sons to help tell the family biography. "We have our realities as parents," Ian says, "and their perspective is going to be so different."

Ian likes that JamBios will let him share in stories that he just can't remember. Recently, he saw a photo of himself and his son Eli playing soccer. He was teaching Eli how to take a ball, and didn't know Annie had captured the moment.

People often have different memories of the same story. In 2006, Annie and the Cusick boys were en route to emigrate from London to the U.S. and move to Hawaii, where Ian was already living. But on the day they were supposed to travel, international travel from London was stopped because of a suspected terrorist plot to detonate liquid explosives in flight. Annie remembers taking calls from concerned relatives, and Ian remembers soothing her over the phone. Their middle son, Lucas, who was 8 at the time, remembers his mom bursting into tears as soon as they saw Ian in Hawaii.

"I was so relieved once it was over," says Annie, JamBios' creative director. "And now I wonder who else made it on the last plane out of London with us? Where were they going? We were all part of a much bigger moment."

After My JamBio, Carvin will launch Our JamBio and World JamBios. Our JamBio is designed for people to tell a shared story and World JamBios is designed for international collaboration on events or topics, whether they are crises like the Cusick family's emigration story, or common topics like flying.

"It tickles your memory bone," Carvin says. "And it's weird, because who would care to read my story about cars? But it does something, the kind of feeling that comes with memory. There's joy in memory and remembering."

PRN JamBios Launch

We launched

May 23, 2017

HONOLULU, May 23, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- JamBios today announced the launch of a new social platform designed to help people remember and share their favorite memories with friends and family. The web platform provides a place to write about the past and enable others to contribute memories of those shared past experiences.

JamBios addresses the challenges consumers face with current social media platforms, where meaningful posts disappear and are hard to retrieve after time has passed. The platform provides a refreshing alternative to the superficial daily posts, such as selfies and food photos, and stressful politically charged content that currently dominate most social feeds.

Using a literary-style structure, JamBios offers Chapters and Sections designed to enable users to enjoy reminiscing with themselves and others about anything from their first car to their first kiss. The JamBios platform includes:

  • Over 100 Chapter topics to choose from including Pets, Houses, Summers, Dreams, Family Dysfunctions, Love Crushes, Greatest Challenges, Recipes and more
  • The ability to illustrate stories with photos and other images
  • An easy method to invite contributors who participated in the memories to add their stories and
  • "Monty," a digital biographer that asks memory prodding questions for each Chapter type.

Unlike other Social Media platforms, JamBios is private by default. Users choose which Chapters and Sections to open to differing audiences based on whom they would like to share and contribute to their memories.

JamBios was co-founded by Beth N. Carvin, a technology executive with nearly two decades as CEO in the enterprise software space. Carvin was inspired by stories about her great grandfather's bar in Boston that were being shared with family via a group email.

"My siblings, cousins and I were on the edge of our seats waiting for the next installment about the barmaids, stolen slot machine and tubs of illegal whiskey, but email wasn't the greatest medium for these memories," said Carvin. "Shortly thereafter I was on Wikipedia and thought to myself, 'why can't we all have a biography to which our friends and family can contribute, even if we aren't famous?' and the idea for JamBios was born."

JamBios is free to use and available immediately. It will be supported by the purchase of JamBios hard copy books for gifts and memory preservation, premium features and corporate JamBios sponsorships to help nostalgic brands connect with consumers through brand memories.

Actor Henry Ian Cusick, star of LOST and The 100 is JamBios' spokesperson and voice of "Monty." He gained interest in JamBios after filming, Rememory, a movie about an inventor who developed a machine that records memories. Cusick, a resident of Hawaii for over 10 years, will help the company promote JamBios worldwide.

Geek Beat Hawaii

Geek Beat Feature

March 23, 2017

Our favorite Geeks, Ryan Ozawa and Burt Lum of Bytemarks Cafe introduce JamBios. Click here to watch it on Hawaii News Now "Sunrise" Morning Show on KHNL.

Pacific Business News Article

Pacific Business News Article

March 17, 2017

By:Anna Hrushka

Beth Carvin, CEO of Honolulu-based human resources technology company Nobscot, is starting a new social media site, and she's calling it the opposite of Facebook. "Facebook, Twitter and all the social media that is out there right now, feels very throwaway," said Carvin, comparing the sites to old daily newspapers. "You read it in the morning and you throw it out at the end of the day." Spurred by the desire to create a platform where memories are preserved and shared in a collaborative way, Carvin is launching JamBios, which will be available on Thursday for 100 select users as part of the company's soft-launch.

The idea for the site, Carvin said, came after corresponding with family members via a group email about a bar in Boston that was owned by her grandfather. The email thread became a conversation between her dad, uncle and cousins, each sharing memories about the family bar where they grew up. After engaging in the email chain, Carvin said she found herself on Wikipedia, wondering why there wasn't a similar site for the average person. "There should be something where you can collaboratively have your own biography," Carvin said.

Carvin says that's how the idea for JamBios was formed. Similar to Facebook's "On This Day" notifications, where users are shown a post from the past, Carvin says JamBios will target nostalgic social media users. "While Facebook facilitates this, it is very ephemeral," she said.

Carvin said she anticipates the site's main users will be from the baby boomer generation and older Generation X. "Baby boomers in general like to reminisce and talk about the past," she said. Other demographics the new site is expected to attract are those interested in genealogy and family history, as well as younger millennials who enjoy journaling.

As far as revenue, the company will target three separate avenues, the first of which will be allowing users to turn their JamBios pages or "chapters" into tangible books. "Photobooks are already a huge market," Carvin said, adding she thinks it will also be the first and quickest revenue stream for the company. JamBios will also target brands for its second source of revenue, by allowing companies to create corporate bios. "Of the top 100 digital advertisers, a great percentage of them are big nostalgic brands," she said.

"We want to create a platform for them to connect to consumers." The third and final revenue stream would be premium services for customers. "We are considering different types of premium services that we may add, for people who want to take it to the next level," Carvin said. "We may or may not need to do that depending on the other revenue sources."