Anthony Bucci

I’m a founder, CEO, brand builder, investor, tech geek, family man and juggernaut. I’m most known for RevZilla. Expect a bit of storytelling, inspiration and insight as my different roles and perspective continue to evolve. I won’t settle and neither should you.

  • Via twitter, Tony Hawk is all over the map and remains a notable personality who does a great job of engaging with their fan base.

    At 29, I am still an engaged fan.

    I have always had a soft spot for skating and when I was a kid Tony Hawk was my favorite skater. Actually he’s still my favorite skater now. My biz partners give me enough grief on a regular basis about my fandom and I still get the occasional barb about “even though you built a halfpipe in the RevZilla warehouse – Tony Hawk is still not coming to skate with you. ever.” It’s comical and I always take it in stride. I think I knew the stakes going into it when I turned 29 and decided to take up a reasonably sized footprint in prime dotcom warehouse real-estate for a miniramp. I had not skated since I was 16.

    Well for some time I have seen the Tony Hawk Foundation (tonyhawkfoundation.org) raise money, with Tony as it’s obvious pitchman, for skateparks in different communities both in the US and internationally. Well a while back he called for a donation and I decided to chip in $25 bucks. I think it builds 1 square foot of concrete “obstacle” at the park to be built. The bonus prize for my generosity? An Autographed picture sent my way with whatever I wanted on it, mailed directly to me.

    I wanted it made out to “Rad Anthony”, and I was obliged with a full color 8×10.

    I spent most of my life not being rad. As I head toward 30 I am changing all that. I now have a daily reminder on my bulletin board to be rad from another rad dude. Thanks, Tony!

    And oh yeah, and if you ever want to donate to a good cause to “help the kids” – THF fits the bill.

    -Rad Anthony

    (for the record my wife and biz partners think this is ridiculous, but I don’t care. )

  • Got some other electronic “ink” this week from KeystoneEdge.com about RevZilla.com.

    “Bucci proudly calls RevZilla’s small and talented team the company’s biggest marketing expense and encourages the under-30 crew play hard as well with pinball machines and a skateboarding halfpipe at its 18,000 square foot warehouse in Philadelphia, where it features a high-end showroom that regularly attracts visitors from more than two hours away. “

    Finally a journalist tech-savvy enough to actually understand what we do! I was beginning to get jaded.

    Check out the full article here: Three friends rev up the motorcycle market with eCommerce horsepower

    Anthony

  • I was interviewed last Friday for the Starter Stories video series. It was a fun experience looking back – and looking forward.

    You can see the rest of the Starter Stories Video Series here.

    Anthony

  • This is how my Monday morning started this week. I am still grinning. It’s nice when customers really “get it”.

    =============== Begin Email ================

    FROM: Bill S.
    TO: RevZilla Customer Service

    Once in a great while, like in almost any circumstance of life, you run across someone or something that’s doing it well.

    You feel good about having worked with them.
    A collaboration of sorts.

    Like a custom set of Snap-On’s box end, open end combinations.
    Ta Da.
    Revzilla needs to recognized and thanked, and I’m here to do it.
    From the word “Go,” I had a smile on my face for the entire marketing trip.
    The website is easy to navigate, there’s a price off, and you get it in my hands in a hurry.
    Another company includes 2 day delivery in their price, recognizing that the purchase high is starting to wane at that point.
    Putting the product in the customer’s hands at that point, extends the enjoyment of the purchase.
    OK, I’m off my soap box.
    Follow-up (some inaccurately call this post sale or back room) was beyond its pedestrian duties of taking the money and putting the product in the consumer’s hands;
    Would that be called the actual, instant of the sale ?
    Sometimes, we forget the sale takes place at the point of exchange.
    Where the rubber meets the road, even.
    Many organizations, on-line and off, never get the shiny side up.
    They leave the customer ambivalent, at best, at the end of the sale.
    No loyalty is created.
    It takes so much money to make that first sale, it’s cheap at almost any price now to make that customer come back.
    Revzilla is doing that.
    My gosh, you’ve even got admirers for the way you’re handling yourselves!
    You even go right to having the product either drop shipped or coming directly from a mechanized warehouse, I would suppose, with minimal handling and in mfr. wrap.
    However you do it, it’s delivered in an acceptable range of days.
    It’s certainly a psychological distance from over a week (8 – 10).
    Now cap that off with an icing of Olympia packaging.
    Superb.
    Better than the norm.
    It looks good even in the box.
    The folding adds to the selling of the product.
    The included hangers will continue to advertise Olympia from the closet, every time the door is opened, for years.
    This is a far cry from pulling it off a rack in a store, and dealing with a clerk that is working to get discount pricing.
    The requisite “Thank You” note is 8 1/2 X 11 no less.
    You’re serious about this.
    You mean it.
    But, sales.
    Smooth.
    My memory of it is nothing.
    Seamless.
    Invisible.
    An example to be emulated.
    Thinking back, I can’t remember a time I was sped along so quickly to the sale.
    The guy I worked with, not even ordered from, worked with. . . .
    Have him teach how he does it.
    Collaborative.
    You’ve got this marketing thing dialed in.
    From here out, it’s fine tuning.
    The tough part.
    You’ve done the first 80, no, 86 % percent so well.
    Now, it gets tough, but, you guys are so far ahead of the curve already.
    My advice to you is to hold onto your hats.
    You really see the customer as more than a number.
    Maybe you got some of the good Markeing MBA’s, those that go behind the research and numbers, get out from behind the screen.
    I just wanted to tell you Revzilla’s on track.
    Wow.
    You’re a breath of fresh air in the on-line retailing business.
    Thank you for the transaction.

    Bill

    =================== End Email ==================

    No, thank you, Bill. You made my day.

    -Anthony

  • Wednesday night we had our first official SkateZilla at the RevZilla warehouse. Skating the miniramp has been great – skating the miniramp, eating grilled meat and talking eCom / social networking is that much better.

    I invited a bunch of old friends who I know skate and also happened to be talented web dev / designers over to “play”. What on a whim started as a miniramp distraction in our motorcycle warehouse, has now very quickly evolved into a chance for me to bring two things I love together and be reasonably productive.

    It also gives me an outside chance of getting hurt a couple times a month and everyone knows that I can’t resist danger.

    About 8 of us hung out from 6-10, ate drank, dropped in and talked a ton of shop. I will take that over the standard “meet after work for a dink” any day of the week any time I can.

    Our SkateZilla tweets even got retweeted a bit and next time around – in two Wednesdays on 9/2 – we may have a coupe more talented new web people whom I don’t know previously, coming to play – Granted they sign the waiver. 😛

    We are shoting for every other Wednesday. If you are a web geek who rides, shoot us a line.

    Obviously we took some shots for posterity. You can see them on RevZilla’s Flickr. SkateZilla #2 Gallery

    …and here is an obligatory video of me falling down the ramp – in High-Def, no less!

    Before you comment, yes I know it blows out the layout, yes I know I am not that good at skateboarding and yes I know that pads are for wusses. I don’t care.

    Booch

  • I started my company, RevZilla.com, a few years ago. My biz partners and I work a ton and I always tell people the biggest difference between working for anyone else and being your own boss is that when you own a company, every day is the same. Tuesdays, Saturdays, holidays & birthdays; you are still at the office or at least thinking about the business. You never stop trying to figure out where you are and how you’ll get where you need to be.

    I see a lot of people focused on the eventual end-goal and/or exit, which is fine. But I feel that that laser-beam focus can sometimes take a little of the enjoyment away from the journey, if you forget to come up for air.

    I have lost sight of the balance between fun and work at other times in my career. Most notably in my mid-twenties. Now more than ever as a business owner, a husband and a father – I refuse to let myself miss the things I know will make me smile that don’t take place behind my desk.

    I stopped skateboarding when I was about 16 years old. I always enjoyed it, but the lure of 10th grade, getting a girlfriend and high school sports were just too much. The skating lost out. By college, I had a ton of free time, but then I discovered the nightlife. The skating lost out again. By the end of college I was so focused on getting my career fast-tracked, that the skating came up empty once more; this time by way of the almighty dollar. I did, however, for the better part of 13 years, always want to learn to ride a halfpipe. It was always right there in the back of my mind.

    RevZilla has a warehouse now, so 5 weeks ago I went and bought a 4 foot half-pipe from craigslist and had it delivered (yes, delivered)… I bought some pads and a board too. As I write this, I am one month from my 29th birthday and learning (painfully) to ride the ramp. My wife is still confused by it all, but the smile on my face is all she needs to see to be completely supportive.

    This 28 second “run” was the fruit of falling on my head for the last 5 weeks. It doesn’t look like much, but I am damn proud of it and had a blast learning to do it.

    Here is the obligatory bail between runs for posterity….

    Riding “that damn halfpipe” has done a great job of keeping me sane this summer in light of the many pressures facing a new business launched into an economic downturn.

    While there are always times when work just has to be all-consuming to keep the company afloat, when I can come up with 30 minutes after all of my other obligations are fulfilled, I grab my skateboard. I challenge everyone to find their “skateboard” here and there, whatever it may be. You will be glad that you did. Those 30 minutes of falling on your head may just help you find your focus and your smile.

    Anthony

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