Left Technologies Inc. announced as one of Deloitte’s Technology Fast 50™ companies for 2019

Maple Ridge, November 7, 2019 — Left Technologies Inc. is presented the Deloitte Technology Fast 50™ program award for its rapid revenue growth, entrepreneurial spirit and bold innovation. The program recognizes Canada’s 50 fastest-growing technology companies with the highest revenue-growth percentage over the past four years. Left ranks 11 with a 1,100 percent in revenue growth from 2015 to 2018.

The Deloitte Technology Fast 50 program winners consist of public and private companies in the technology sector, which have transformed the industry. Now in its 22nd year, the program runs alongside the broader Deloitte North American Technology Fast 500™, with winners automatically eligible for this elite ranking.
Left's CEOs John Lyotier and Chris Jensen, credits their culture of Doing things Right and working with cutting edge technology with the company's 1,100 percent revenue growth.
“In an era of rapid and constant change, Fast 50 companies should be incredibly proud of the impact they are making across all industries, as they foster the economic prosperity and success of our country,” said Erica Pretorius, Partner and National Leader for the Technology Fast 50™ program at Deloitte Canada. “Their bold vision, unrivaled growth and true commitment to innovation allow them to not only improve today’s world, but also shape tomorrow’s, and I can’t wait to see where they take us moving forward.”
To qualify for the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 ranking, companies must have been in business for at least four years, have revenues of at least $5 million, be headquartered in Canada, own proprietary technology, conduct research and development activities in Canada and invest a minimum of five percent of gross revenues in R&D.
About the Deloitte Technology Fast 50™ - The Deloitte Technology Fast 50 program is Canada’s pre-eminent technology awards program. Celebrating business growth, innovation and entrepreneurship, the program features three distinct categories including the Technology Fast 50 Ranking, Enterprise Fast 15 category (recognizes fastest-growing enterprise-level technology, media, and telecommunications companies by revenue-growth percentage over their last four years of operation), and Companies-to-Watch Awards (early-stage Canadian tech companies with the potential to be a future Deloitte Technology Fast 50 candidate). Program sponsors include Deloitte, Bank of Montreal, CBRE, First West Capital, Miller Thomson, OMERS Ventures, 3C and Lafond. For further information, visit www.fast50.ca.
About Left Technologies Inc.
Established in 2010, we’ve been quietly building an overnight success story out here in Maple Ridge. Now with a global team of 109, we are on a mission to make our mark on the world.
As a certified B-Corporation, we are passionate about finding the world’s biggest problems and using technology to solve them. In 2019, we launched our newest brand, One Degree, which supports sustainability to the world of travel by encouraging, recognizing, and rewarding, eco-friendly accommodations.
That’s not the only innovative solution Left’s team is working on. Our Left Travel brand uses A.I., big data, and predictive analysis to create our proprietary TravelMindTM, driving $300M+ of gross travel bookings each year. Why? Because travel brings people closer together, breaks down barriers, and shows us new possibilities.
What really makes Left special though isn’t what we build, but who we are.

Women in Technology: Insights into the Gender Gap

Joanne Lott, Manager, Operations & Business Development for our Left Travel brand, shares her reflections on women in technology.

International Women’s Day provides a timely opportunity to reflect on the progress of female representation in the Technology industry today. According to Statistica, the percentage of women in the US workforce has grown to 46.8% overall. The Technology industry, however, continues to lag behind with female participation at less than 20%, and women’s wages are an average $16,000 less than their male counterparts. In an industry whose survival depends on innovation, this lack of diversity and persistent gender gap remains a problem.

My career in the Technology industry began 20 years ago, and I have witnessed some great strides in making the tech workforce better for women, but have also experienced some of the historical and institutional reasons why Tech remains a man’s world.

Challenges for women

Getting a job in technology remains unfairly weighted towards men. An overall cultural bias persists that women are not as competent at, or passionate about, technology as men. At times in my career, there were assumptions made that my knowledge and passion for innovative technologies came from the males in my life, and not from my own technical competencies. This bias limits the hiring of women and incorrectly posits computers and Tech as exclusively male domains.

Some misconceptions about gender roles also continue, such as the idea that caregiver responsibilities might interfere with women’s ability to do a good job. For example, while interviewing for a role at a mid-level internet company, the recruiter asked me who would be watching my children upon my return to work. Despite being highly qualified, the fact that I was a mother was perceived as a strike against my candidacy for the role.

After gaining entry in the technology workforce, women also face challenges in the content they work on and in the workplace culture. In many companies where the technology and entertainment industries intersect, for example, the content can be strongly gendered and sexist. I have also worked in environments that were more akin to fraternity houses — where posters of scantily-clad women hung on office walls. This environment made it challenging to lead with authority or feel empowered to facilitate or manage innovation within my team.

This ‘bro’ culture also has a negative impact on the important informal networks so critical to women’s career progression. Many raises and promotions occur because someone in the Executive layer advocates for the progression of a particular individual. Studies have shown that women, especially women of colour, have less access to these critical informal social networks, limiting the speed of their career trajectory compared to men.

Some technology companies also have corporate cultures or management processes that require long or unpredictable in-office working hours. Many start-ups, for example, expect a 12-hour daily grind and push employees to the point of burnout. Because many women are also responsible for childcare or care of elderly parents, these types of demanding work conditions limit women’s career choices. Some companies make untenable work hours a requirement, making women choose between time with their children versus continuing on their career path.

The challenges described above can provide some historical context into why gender diversity in Tech still remains a problem. These are just a small number of challenges that can detract women and girls from entering STEM fields of study, in order to enter the tech workforce in the first place. Some of these challenges might also contribute to women leaving the technology industry altogether.

Why does it matter?

Diversity is critically important in driving innovation. Having different perspectives and experiences is a key force in coming up with new ideas. Studies have shown that being with similar others leads us to think that we all hold the same information and share the same perspective, thus coming up with flat and shallow solutions. Research also shows that when we hear dissent from someone who is different from us, it provokes more thought than when it comes from someone who looks like us. Data and studies show that effective collaboration and creativity require a degree of agitation in order to be truly innovative; this is how diversity can contribute to new ideas.

Diversity is good for business. A uniform or homogeneous workforce can also limit the identification of market opportunities. Understanding consumer behaviour and design thinking are driving how products are made. Without diversity, many firms risk ignoring women’s perspectives when designing new software, online experiences, and products. For example, in the gaming industry in particular, a recent study shows that while only 22% of the video game industry is female, the gender split in playing video games is 45% female.

Additionally, according to the Anita Borg Institute, high performing companies have women in senior leadership positions. “Fortune 500 companies with at least three female directors have seen their return on invested capital increase by at least 66%, return on sales increase by 42%, and return on equity increase by at least 53%.”

What can we do?

Women have been trying for decades to give voice and address some of the challenges described above. Many technology companies continue to address these concerns and put into place policies that attempt to eliminate biases in hiring, salary, and workplace harassment.

Here are some things the tech industry could do more of:

Address the knowledge gap early

Companies like Left sponsor STEM coding camps and Girls Tech Hour of Code events to introduce coding and technology to girls early in life. This type of event can help girls by dispelling gender biases about technology and providing a level of comfort around innovative tools such as Virtual Reality headsets, open source code, and 3D printers.

Commitment by those in Leadership

Corporate Leaders can commit to gender equality and representation on all levels of their businesses. By setting Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) as part of their formal objectives and planning, company leaders can set hiring targets to ensure women are equally represented in all areas — the Board of Advisors, Board of Directors, Engineering, Project Management, Product Design, QA, etc. Once onboard, companies can also invest in growing future diverse managers and leads by providing coaching, training programs, and promoting from within.

Executives should ensure their companies remove gender bias from their recruiting and hiring practices and pay scales. They can learn how to hire more women by understanding how other firms have done it. An example is “How Slack Got Ahead in Diversity”.

In order to retain talent, Managers should also ask women directly about what types of support they need in the form of policies or networks. For example, provide opportunities for women to build mentorship relationships with members of the Executive layer, which can help with women’s career advocacy. They can also create policies around remote and flexible work hours in order to empower women with challenging and unpredictable schedules.

The technology industry must embrace the concept that diversity enables innovation, and take concrete steps to hire more women, or they will fall behind in the business of new ideas.

Learn how to participate and support Women in Tech communities here:






About Joanne Lott:

Joanne’s career started in the Technology industry in 1998. Since then, she has worked for small internet start-ups, one large publicly traded corporation, and a couple medium-sized technology companies. In 2012, she put her career on pause to raise her children, and completed her MBA part-time. After a 5 year absence from the workforce, she is now the Manager of Operations and Business Development at Left Travel. She has two daughters.

Can Blockchain Change the World?

We believe every kite has a story. At Left, we’ve adopted the symbol of the kite. A kite is playful, but it also needs tending. If you fail to pull the string, it will fall back to the ground. We believe our users, our partners, our community — they all have stories worth telling. Our goal is to try and tell the stories to the best of our abilities.

This post is a travel diary of sorts describing a trip taken Sept 14 to October 3, 2018 by four members of our Canadian team: John Lyotier, Joe Deobald, Rachel Cheng, and Brianna MacNeil (the bios for each are at the bottom of the story). This primary purpose of the trip was to do field research, meet with our team in Bangladesh, plan with strategic partners, connect with potential customers, and … tell our story with the help of the Decent Documentary film crew who accompanied us every step of the way.

I admit, I have had trouble writing this post, and you will see a jarring transition part way though. This difficulty is not because I was procrastinating, nor is it because I had too many other important things to do. It is also not the result of having too much material to share: too many photos, too many thoughts, and too many emotions to squeeze into a few column inches.

You see, core to the trip was a visit to the Rohingya refugee camps on the Bangladesh/ Myanmar border. The largest of which, the Kutapalong-Balukhali (commonly referred to as the “Megacamp”) is the world’s largest refugee camp and home to an estimated 660,000 refugees. Over the past 12 months, over 700,000 Rohingya have fled the genocide in Myanmar and have made their way into Bangladesh. The connectivity (or lack thereof) for these displaced people led us to the camp where we wanted to see how RightMesh could help.

While Brea, Joe, and Rachel may each share their own, individual heartbreak and emotions in their own photo journals, I wanted to set the stage for all of us.

This was destined to be a memorable trip for all of us, though perhaps each for different reasons. Should you have any questions or feedback, please let us know in the comments or drop us a note. There are a lot more thoughts we didn’t have time or the courage to write, but we still would be happy to answer your questions.

Thanks for reading.


Intro & Pre-trip Jitters

This will be my ninth trip to Bangladesh, yet it will be the first for Joe, Rachel, and Brea.

For those who are unaware, Left, the parent company for RightMesh first established operations in Bangladesh back in 2010. Left Technologies International (dba W3Engineers) works across our portfolio of companies, including building apps for the RightMesh ecosystem as well as is responsible for the technology stack for our revenue-producing side of the business. The team also works on other for-bid projects centered around its understanding and expertise in scaling mobile and web applications as well as its growing expertise in decentralized technologies and mesh implementations.

While our visit the Rohingya Refugee Camp near Cox’s Bazar was to be the “highlight” [I feel somewhat awkward calling it that], I take great pleasure in visiting our team and seeing the progress of some of our initiatives while reconnecting with friends and colleagues. On this trip, we were also so appreciative of our team for the effort they have put forth to secure us proper visiting permits, allowing us to visit the refugee camps. This refugee crisis affects not only every Bangladeshi, but it is a global issue that humanity needs to step in and do what it can to assist.

On the back half of the trip, we have added a few days to meet with strategic partners in the Philippines as well as host a meetup with ConsenSys in Manila. The Philippines, which has more than 105m people spread across 7,000 islands, is a place that I have never been to before, and we believe that it has the density and requirements for RightMesh to thrive.

A large part of the pre-planning was coordinating the trip with the Refugium Foundation as part of our partnership on their upcoming documentary, “Decent — How Blockchain Can Change the World.” As we noted in our partnership announcement,

“The film plans to feature real-life use cases of Distributed Ledger Technology which offer solutions to societal issues ranging from a lack of internet connectivity to aiding refugees. Decent will be one of the first documentaries to explore how blockchain companies like RightMesh can have a massive social impact and benefit real people everyday.”

I try to make it out to meet with our team in Bangladesh frequently. I set myself a target of every six months, but this time it will be closer to ten months between visits. My travel schedule of the past year took a toll on me and my family, so after completing the RightMesh ICO, I needed to catch my breath and delay until now.

While I have always felt extremely safe on any of my trips to Bangladesh, I have to admit that I had a little trepidation about this trip. Not only were we to venture further south to the Bangladesh-side of the Myanmar border, but also a lot of the planning was occurring in the midst of the Bangladesh student protests. While things subsided relatively quickly and rather quietly, with a federal election coming up in a few months, I feared that tensions could be running high.

Sunday, Sept 17, Arriving in Dhaka

It was 32 hours and 20 minutes. I have gotten into the habit of setting a stopwatch when I leave my house and stopping it only upon checking into the hotel at my destination. 32 hours wasn’t bad considering I have had other trips to Bangladesh that have been as high as 44 hours. This time was Vancouver > Manila > Kuala Lumpur > Dhaka.

I’m not really sure why I track my journey to be honest. It is probably because I am still fascinated by the idea of time travel, and partially it is me pretending to have a modicum of control over what is a relatively uncontrollable situation.

Thankfully, we just missed the Super Typhoon Mangkhut that did some significant damage and killed 50 people in the northern part of the Philippine archipelago — but it was a reminder that our technology can have a real impact throughout the world. Sometimes when you get a notice of a 4-hour delay in your flight, it causes angst. This time, it was a blessing. We just missed the storm, so other than it being long, the journey was uneventful.

While most of our first day in Dhaka was also uneventful, we had an opportunity to visit the RAJUK Uttara Apartment Project north of the city as we contemplate how our technology can be used in rethinking “Smart Cities” everywhere. While so much of Dhaka has been built out with urban sprawl and without much apparent planning, this was a new initiative that was more of a planned, livable, and environmentally-friendly city. Located over 215 acres, the project will feature 179 buildings of 14 stories each, totaling 15,036 flats. An estimated 75,000 people will live in the community.

Why these figures are important to note is the scale of growth that Dhaka is experiencing. In 1971, the city just passed 1 million citizens. Now there are more than 17 million inhabitants. At the rate of annual growth, enough people will move into the capital city to fill these towers over and over every single month. So when we talk about urbanization and some of the world’s mega-cities unable to keep pace with their rate of growth, this is the scale that we are talking about.

Monday, Sept 18, Dhaka

I had forgotten how horrific the traffic situation in Dhaka was. Though in conversations with locals, it has gotten worse… this happens when you add nearly one “Austin” to your existing population base annually [Austin’s population was 931,000 in 2017]. While they are rapidly trying to construct a rapid transit/skytrain system, this has the short term impact of making the snarls even worse than they already are. The new rapid transit will connect into the new Uttara project as well. Our office is in the Gulshan area of Dhaka, and to go to another office also on Gulshan, we had to have about 40 minutes of travel time “Just in Case”. This was for about 2km.

It is not just the private cars that clog the arteries, it is the CNGs, rickshaws, and now… a whole lot of motorbikes. The motorbikes are relatively new thanks in large part to a rapid proliferation of ride-sharing services like Pathao and Uber.

Bangladesh has one of the highest fatality rate in road accidents in the world. Dhaka, as the country’s largest city, also has the highest total number of accidents and accident rates with more than 2,000 fatalities annually. According to the Dhaka Tribune, “At least 4,284 people, including 516 women and 539 children, were killed and 9,112 others injured in 3,472 road accidents across Bangladesh in 2017.” The number of accidents increased by 15.82% and death toll by 25.56% in 2017 compared to that of 2016.

An interesting side note: during the student protests over unsafe transportation of a few months ago, the government shut down Internet access to quell the actions. This resulted in these booming ride-sharing services also being impacted. When you have centralized infrastructure that relies on always-on connectivity, you really need it to be always on.

In Bangladesh, one of my other observations is that autonomous, self-driving vehicles have already arrived. Well not literally, but as it is more common to have a driver than drive as a single occupant, the effect is the same. The car owner is in the back seat being driven around, and thus, they have time to browse on their phone, read the news, do work, engage with entertainment. And because one of the core product market fit questions that one always needs to ask is, “When will my customers use my product?” In most of Bangladesh, an obvious answer is, “When sitting in traffic!”

In any case, rather than parking a vehicle off the road while not in use — thanks to ride-sharing services — many vehicle owners are putting their private cars to work during the day or during off-use hours. This results in the already crowded roadways being even more congested. This is something that we should expect to happen more and more in already-developed economies as well as autonomous ride-sharing vehicles come to the city near you.

Dhaka Demo Day

When we finally did arrive into our Dhaka office, it was demo day. The team had prepared demonstrations of various technologies and applications that it had been working on since my last visit. This included a few games and several applications powered by RightMesh. When we hit Mainnet in Q1 of next year, our intent is to have several apps in market already that can showcase how the mesh functions. A few of the apps that I saw that intrigued me included:

  • A mesh browser (to browse general purpose websites and cache content for offline consumption by others)
  • An app-updating app market. As described in our initial whitepaper, we have identified that a really big problem in emerging markets is that smartphone users don’t update their apps as the cost/time calculation for the data just doesn’t make sense. A recent report covering WhatsApp cited that only 1 in 5 users in India has the most recent version of their product.
  • A doodling game to play with nearby friends

There were more apps as well, that may or may not get published, but in any case it is great to see the innovation and work of the team.

Crypto-Assets in Bangladesh

When you think about the community support we received during the RightMesh Token Generating Event, it amazes me when I take a chance to pause. We had a wonderful dinner with one of our contributors in Dhaka and received some great on-the-ground insight into doing business in one of the world’s fastest growing cities and the role that crypto-assets will play. And yes, they will be able to transform the country and the economy if those currently in power are willing to let it flourish.

This is one of the challenges with the crypto economy in Bangladesh. In September 2014, Bangladesh Central Bank said that “anybody caught using the virtual currency could be jailed under the country’s strict anti-money laundering laws”. This is quite the statement. In December of 2017, this was further clarified with a circular that stated, “that Bitcoin is not an authorised and legal currency in any other country in the world….Transaction with this currency may cause a violation of the existing money laundering and terrorist financing regulations.” However, they also agreed to study it properly over the past year and various groups are awaiting updates. As noted in the DhakaTribune:

Bangladesh Bank Deputy Governor SK Sur Chowdhury, in a recent seminar, said: “A committee will be formed by next June [2018], by coordinating with various public and private agencies. The committee will work to find out a way on how to introduce Bitcoin in Bangladesh.

Those who we met with believe it is inevitable that Bitcoin and other crypto assets will play a significant part in Bangladesh, particularly as it relates to international money transfers and remittances.

Globally, remittances to low and middle-income countries reached an estimated $466 billion in 2017, an increase of 8.5% over the $429 billion in 2016. This data was published by the World Bank’s latest Migration and Development brief. Remittances to low and middle-income countries reached an estimated $466 billion, an 8.5 percent increase on $429 billion in 2016. Global remittances also grew 7 percent to $613 billion in 2017.

In Bangladesh, remittances accounted for $13.5 billion annually.

The world is slowly making progress towards the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) for remittance fees. The World Bank reported that for just the second quarter ever, the percentage of remittance had dropped below 7%. In Q3 2018, the percentage paid for sending remittance was 6.94%, while the SDG target remains at 5%.

While many within Government may be worried about the flight of money out of the country, the efficiency gains to return remittance into the country will be substantial.

Prospective Partner Conversations

IMPORTANT: The mentioning of specific entities or companies does not imply any sort of partnership or relationship with any of the companies mentioned. The possibility of working with such an entity is only hypothetical and will remain as such until formalized announcements are made.

One of the trip’s primary objectives was to engage with strategic partners or potential strategic partners and explore how our technology could integrate with other solutions and solve real problems. We believe all too often companies spend too much time locked away from potential users and miss the opportunities that are presented to them. In Dhaka, I wanted to highlight a few conversations:


A division of Swedish-based Saltside Technologies, Bikroy was launched in 2012 and means “sell” in the local language Bangla and has become the largest marketplace in Bangladesh. Bikroy.com is one of the countries most-visited websites and their app is one of most used in Bangladesh.

Bikroy has done an incredible job tapping into the consumer mindset in Bangladesh and has created a platform to facilitate P2P transactions. Their users use the Bikroy app and site to facilitate thousands of mobile phone sales daily as well as real estate, autos, and other new and used goods.

We are interested in exploring how mesh technologies could help facilitate direct payments. We also believe that through their existing density of users, we would be able to blanket the entire city of Dhaka with a mobile mesh network creating a new telecom infrastructure.

ME SOLshare Ltd

SOLshare is a fascinating group with great technology. I had initially heard about them on a previous trip to Bangladesh about some early pilot deployments they had. Joe sought them out on this trip to learn more about them, their technology, and their vision for a more sustainable world. SOLshare describes their business as follows:

Sustainable, affordable energy access for low income rural people is possible right now. Our decentralised peer-to-peer microgrids deliver solar power to households and businesses, and enable them to trade their (excess) electricity for profit.

What interested us in SOLshare was their focus on similar customers. They are going out into remote Bangladesh villages where existing infrastructure seems to have forgotten inhabitants or has not yet caught up to a modernized world. There are unique connectivity opportunities in each of their deployments, and hopefully we can help them with some of their challenges as they expand their program.

Wednesday, Sept 19, Dhaka

Wednesday was a day that I kind of dreaded a bit. Marek, from the Decent Documentary crew, was going to be asking me a bunch of questions about RightMesh, our vision for rethinking for connectivity, what brought us to Bangladesh, and more. I didn’t really know too much about what to expect, but I knew that it would make me feel somewhat uncomfortable.

I don’t really like talking about myself, you see. I am willing to do so, of course, but I would much rather talk about the team and their accomplishments, the company and what it has achieved, or a shared vision that many of us hold dear. But talk about me? My start? My background and probing questions like that? That kind of makes me squirm a bit.

I guess that is what a good journalist does. They ask the hard questions, but in the end, they help tell the stories that need to be told.

For those unfamiliar with the DecentDocumentary and their exploratory question of, “How Blockchain Can Change the World?” watch their latest trailer below. We are so honored to be a part of this project.

Once I set aside my apprehension, Marek, Sebastian, and Anna were great to work with. Wednesday was our first of nearly 10 full days with them, and we gave them full access to our team and our project. I can’t wait to see the finished result.

I also gave a talk to our team in Dhaka about the “Robot Revolution” of which we are living in the midst of. And while this will become its own blog post one day, I don’t want to delay from the meat of this post. I did want to share a candid shot I snapped on the last day of our team hard at work, however:

Note the Canadian flags that I handed out to the team. We often try and spread a bit of Canadiana each time we visit. I am proudly Canadian, largely in part because I believe that Canada is a nation that is a true cultural mosaic in which our differences make us who we are rather than drive us apart.

Thursday, Sept 20, 2018

Today was another travel day. This time it was the journey from Dhaka down to the Chittagong Hills region where we would stay in beautiful Cox Bazar. Note the back cover of today’s newspaper from my hotel room:

Do you see the headline? A Bangladeshi scientist leads discovery of a novel quantum state of matter. Yes, that’s right. A really smart person has done something that no one else in the world has done in a field that is one of the most technically complex and incomprehensible to the majority of us.

Or perhaps an alternative headline could have read, “Look at the potential that is unleashed when you bring connectivity and education and opportunity to the rest of the world!”

I often ponder how much faster society could have advanced if we were able to tap into the collective brain power that exists elsewhere in the world in people who are not given an opportunity? How much more scientific advancement, poetry, or original thought have we lost over the years because we have historically excluded half the population (women), or today half the population (unconnected) from being their best selves?

A Deloitte study from a few years ago indicated that if you increase Internet access in Africa, Latin America, India, and South East Asia to levels seen in developed countries you would increase :

  • Productivity as much as 25% in these developing economies
  • The resulting economic activity could generate $2.2 trillion in additional GDP, and more than 140 million new jobs
  • Personal incomes would increase by up to $600 per person a year, thus lifting 160 million people out of extreme poverty
  • They showed evidence on the link between health literacy and mortality rates suggests that internet access could save the lives of 2.5 million people and 250,000 children
  • 2.5 million HIV/AIDS patients could increase their life expectancy thanks to better monitoring and adherence to treatment
  • Another 640 million children may be able to access the internet and the wealth of information it makes available improving their educational outcomes.

In other words, not only would inclusiveness and connectivity help understand quantum entanglement and other hard science questions, but if we could solve connectivity, we could solve some of the world’s biggest problems. And this… this is what we are all about and why we are so passionate about our mission.

But just as we were about to fly, I saw another headline come in via CNN and a whole syndicate of other news sites:

“UN calls for genocide tribunal over Rohingya crisis”

We were literally going into the heart of the headlines… directly into the flames, if you will, of a nation in crisis. Our mission: to see if mesh networking could alleviate some of the everyday challenges of refugees and for the associated humanitarian groups; to see if blockchain could change the world. And really, we wanted to see what — if anything — we could do to help.

I was terrified.

Friday, Sept 21 Cox’s Bazar, Chittagong Region, Bangladesh

We are staying at a beautiful 5-star resort just over one hour away from the Rohingya Refugee Camp. I woke up and have been able to look out over a large swimming pool, and just beyond that you’ll find the breaking waves of one of the longest beaches of the world. This is the type of spot I would love to bring my family for a relaxing vacation. Yet, the contrast with what today is all about is jarring.

Today, we are venturing into the Kutapalong-Balukhali (commonly referred to as the “Megacamp”). This is the largest refugee camp in the world, the “home” to more than 660,000 refugees. And as the day starts, I sense the entire team is all a little nervous. Well, I know I am, and maybe I am just projecting my feelings onto others.

Upon arrival in Cox’s Bazar, we had a meeting with the ETS group of the World Food Program, and this conversation stuck with me overnight. I am glad we had those conversations on our arrival as it served to steady the nerves a bit on our first full day. One of the things they had mentioned was that, during the day, the camp is relatively safe and the Rohingya are, for the lack of a better word, “happy”, noting we will be probably be greeted by smiling children.

The reason given for this contentedness is simple: they are alive, they can practice their religion, and they have a small rations of food (thanks to the World Food Program, which they indicated was only 30% funded for this particular mission). How low of a bar is that?

Meanwhile, I am sitting here in the resort with the air conditioning on high, a large bottle of water next to me, having already nibbled on some early morning snacks prior to going down to a buffet breakfast, and feeling somewhat annoyed that my connectivity is forcing me to multi-task into multiple tabs while my ADD can’t have the patience to wait for something to download [the real definition of a first-world problem is good connectivity].

I have read enough to know a little bit about what to expect as we ventured into the camp, but this was to be still an “unknown”, and our protective DNA has coded us to be a little apprehensive when faced with situations with which we are unfamiliar. While today may hold a lot of unknowns, I know that I will learn things, the lessons from which will last a lifetime.

This apprehension grew as we were waiting for our drivers and translators. We were handed face masks from one of our handlers in case the smell was too bad.

I was ready.

Hour of Code: Inspiring Children by Inspired Lefties

We always speak of the importance of our core values here at Left, and not that I play favourites, but “Make a Difference in Your Community” is one of my personal favourites. The internal satisfaction and gratitude you get when you have an impact on others are undeniable. Particularly with kids. There is something about their excitability that has a lasting impact. Knowing that the little things that we so often take for granted are genuinely shaping the minds of the youth is incredible.
Inspired by this, last Thursday we opened our doors to the community and had 4 classes (100+ kids in grades 4,5,6) come in and learn about what it is like to work in tech and talk about how "work can be fun if you are following your dreams and passions". We spent an hour and a half with each class doing some Scratch coding lessons, innovative demonstrations (play time with geeky toys), and a tour of the office. By the end, I think we were all inspired by the questions and excitement from the kids. Sure, we were exhausted by the end (kudos to all the teachers out there), but also extremely rewarded. When we were asking the kids some of their dreams and getting responses such as, “make a robot”, “create a game using virtual reality” or “own a company like this”, it was a good reminder that this is an amazing opportunity to have a positive influence. Of course, this was after the kids spent time playing with our geeky things that our team has passions for: Oculus, Robots, Raspberry Pi hacks, 3D printing, and Drawing.
It’s important that we share with our youth the endless possibilities that are in front of them. Sharing that Jenna is the amazing artist who not only created our huge chalk mural but also draws the characters in our app was inspiring to the artists in the group. Highlighting that tech isn’t just about coding and developing was a way for us inspire kids who didn’t think they would work in a tech company.
Believing in the incredible is another one of our core values at Left and it was truly incredible to share our passions and knowledge with the brilliant kids of the future. With some of their questions and ideas, I was ready to hand out application forms. Hopefully, they won’t forget about us once they’re all grown up and become smarter than all of us!
Computer Science Education week starts on December 5th and within that is an Hour of Code event that you can read more about here. We kicked it off a little early with our office tour, but we usually try to do things a little differently. You might also see our Lefties out volunteering at other schools for more Hour of Code fun this week. If so, don’t be shy and ask them what their favourite part of the day was!
To see some of the action, check out our video here.
BeFunky Collage

On Winning the Best Workplace in BC

Dear Chris,
We did it. Now back to work.
[Editor's Note: Curious what we did to get recognized as the Best Place to Work in BC?  Come by for a beer or read a summary of our application here].
Best Workplace in BCP.S.  I was going to write a nice long blog post this morning in the form of a letter from me to you, talking about the almost 6 years in partnership that we have had, and the 19 years of friendship. I would probably have even dropped in a fancy metaphor or two, maybe even a colourful analogy along the way. Something along the lines of "There are floor people and there are chair people…
You see I wanted to find a way to express some of the thoughts and emotions from the team’s win last night, and normally I am pretty good with words (written ones anyhow). However, being named the BEST WORKPLACE IN BC kind of speaks for itself though does it not? And yes, I just wrote the award name in SHOUTCASE! because if there is anything that we should be shouting from the rooftops, it is this.
It was going to be an awesome post. It really was.
I was going to reminisce openly about some of the trials and tribulations that we have had along the way, maybe even going way back to those nights we used to sit around pondering about what life would be like if were to combine talent and run a company together? How would we do things differently? What would matter to us, and how could we change the world. I was going to ask if this counts to us being ‘Proud of the mark we have made,’ and thus… does this mean we have hit the end of the journey?
But then the kids woke up, and life started again. The coffee was poured, and I realized as I read the words of Ernest Hemmingway, “Live the full life of the mind, exhilarated by new ideas, intoxicated by the romance of the unusual…” that that nothing really changes that much. There is still so much left to be done.

Left of the Dot is now Left™

We are Left – just one word, but it has so much meaning!

Imagine if you could do the impossible. Imagine if you were free to soar high with unrestrained opportunity. Imagine if you could make your mark, play with your family, and impact your Community in ways never before imaginable. The kite flies because of its tail, meaning those little things we do every day – they matter. They matter more than you know. Imagine if… we were Left.
After an incredible five-and-a-half years operating as Left of the Dot Media, we are now rebranding to Left™. It is just one word, but it carries with it a whole lot of meaning.
So why the change, why now? A big factor in the rebrand was to more accurately reflect today’s reality that we have pivoted away from a business model where we had domains at our core (and really from building out sub-domains ‘to the left of the dot’ which was our original business concept). Today, Left’s core is our people, and the left-field, left-brain, road-less-traveled, innovative ideas that these people can create.
Yes, we build businesses. Great businesses. But Left is more than just a media company; it is more than the sum of its parts. We believe that everything and anything is possible. We believe that a company can make great, profitable businesses without sacrificing the joy in life. We believe that making our mark on the world, taking care of our families, and impacting our Community positively is the foundation to building incredible things. Our values are not just things that we believe in, they are the way we do our jobs, live our lives, and engage with the world around us.
We have been working hard to create a brand that we can all be proud of… one that we will place joyfully onto everything we do and onto everything we create: from apparel, to the side of our office buildings, and all points in between.

We are Left™

The brand features a custom font and symbolism throughout.  We wanted a logo that had a certain vibrancy to it, one that reflected our cultures and core values. We wanted the brand to feel alive and be symbolic of the creativity and innovation that is at the heart of what we do. We wanted it to show connection and movement. I think this has been achieved.
Starting with the word mark…

  • Look at the ‘’L”… your eye moves from left to right quickly, following a continuous line that runs through the entire brand. This line shows movement and represents the ten core values that bind us.
  • Next is the “e”… this is inspired by Google, and the same letter is in their word mark. We were inspired by them, not because of the traffic that they generate for many of our brands, but because like Google, we wanted to add a bit more playfulness to the mark (and we also admire their innovative style). We like to have fun and do things a little differently, so we didn’t want to have just a regular old ‘e’. Our ‘e’ leans leftward, but still looks like it is gaining momentum, rolling forward.
  • Then comes the ‘f’ and ‘t’. These are connected. We had looked at potential acronyms in our branding exercise, and while we couldn’t agree on what the first two letters would represent, we do believe the last two were symbolic of ‘Family’ and ‘Team’. The fact that they are connected is kind of like what we do. We like to think of them as holding hands.

We take flight with the Kite…

  • We have always had kites on display in our offices, watching over us in a way. The ones above the desks of our employees today were flown by our first Lefties on their first day in the office. When Chris and I were first writing out the projects we had in front of us, we scribbled diamonds on the wall and wrote the big projects. Beneath these, we had small rectangles listing all of the sub-tasks we needed to do to achieve these tasks. We created kites.
  • In our last office, we had an old Hawaiian proverb on the wall reminding everyone, “The kite flies because of its tail.” In tech companies, you often have the metaphor of rocks and pebbles where rocks are the big projects and pebbles are the small tasks. We liked the symbolism of a kite way more than that of a rock. A rock is about looking down. A kite is about looking up. There are many more possibilities in life and in business when you keep your head up and you look around and marvel at the world.
  • A kite is playful. We want to enjoy what we do. We need to take time to play games and appreciate life. If we don’t, what’s the point?
  • A kite flies in the blue sky. You can control it, you can pull the string, but in the end if you let go, it will fly for a while before falling back down to earth. A kite needs attention.
  • The kite’s tail forms a stylized ‘L’. As a result, our hope is that it can eventually stand alone as a mark.
  • The kite’s colour was inspired by the lights we used to have on our first few desks: the warm glow of a green banker’s lamp. When looking at the colour, we wanted it to be bright enough that it, alone, would show the vibrancy and life of the team and company.

We have had a great 5.5 years as Left of the Dot, a brand that had served us well and saw a lot of excitement. But you know what’s really exciting? Imagining what’s left to come. We have a lot of string left to be let out.
Editor’s Note:
The new Left brand was created by the incredibly-talented Joe Deobald, our Creative Director, and principal at Full Frame Marketing. Joe was one of our original Lefties, and he was there working with us at the very beginning (even before there were any Lefties, in fact).
Several years ago when we didn’t have enough work for a full-time creative team, we formed a unique partnership with Full Frame. Left of the Dot would be their largest client, and we would incubate their design and branding team out of our offices, which they still call home to today. Since that time, we have built many award-winning brands together. And while we look forward to our ongoing collaborations, it gives us immense satisfaction to see his agency take flight.

Holy Sh!t Mom! We’re a Top 5 Finalist for Best Workplace in BC

Holy Sh!t Mom! We’re a Top 5 Finalist for Best Workplace in BC.

Woo Hoo! We are a Top 5 Finalist for Best Workplace in BC!

SPOILER ALERT! – Left won! Left won! Left won! [updated Feb 26, 2016]
Four weeks. That is less than one month. My mom used to say, “Count the sleeps” and it will make the time go by faster. As per the wonderful news that was announced today, our team of Lefties has just been named one of the Top 5 in the Small Business BC Awards in the category of Best Workplace.
“The Best Workplace Award recognizes the business that provides the best overall place to work. The business that receives this award provides a supportive, happy and healthy work environment for their staff. It’s a leader in encouraging both mental and physical health in its employees through education, incentives and activities for all staff members.”
How cool is that!
The Awards Ceremony takes place on February 25. That is only 28 days away. To help pass the time, I thought I would share the application that our team wrote explaining what life is like at Left.
So in their words…
“Describe the past, present and future practices in your business that support the mental and physical health of your employees.”
Since inception in 2010, we have been guided by 10 core values that foster and support creativity and employee well being in all that we do. We “Lefties” believe strongly in the philosophy that healthy and happy employees have far greater potential of producing incredible work. As such, our commitment to health and wellness is woven through daily decisions.

  • Relocated office to be closer to employee families
  • Ability to telecommute remains even though employees save 8.5+ hours/week in stress-free commuting
  • Flexible hours to accommodate school & daycare dropoff/pickup.
  • Unlimited Community Days (paid time off) where Lefties volunteer in their community, improve their mental well-being, and give back
  • 18 Vacation/Personal/sick days per year.
  • Competitive Benefits (dental, extended health, life insurance, etc.) provided by Manulife Financial
  • Maternity Policy (includes baby bonus, salary top-up, and RESP contribution)
  • Fresh fruit daily
  • Ergonomic adjustable chairs, optional stand-up desks, and ergonomic keyboards/mice, monitor stands, etc.
  • Large-screen monitors with eye-strain reducing software
  • Free Bootcamp classes twice weekly
  • Company-paid all fees for ToughMudder 19km challenge
  • Informal/structured mentoring available for all employees.
  • Full kitchen, filtered water, and family-style dining
  • Salad/Lunch club – up to 100% participation from Lefties in potluck style lunch club
  • The Dream Program™ where we train, support, and celebrate Lefties achieving personal goals
  • Monthly lunch and learns
  • Continuing education grants for employees
  • Games room for mental/physical breaks complete with ping pong and foosball
  • Library, including books on self-improvement, mental and physical health
  • On multiple occasions, the company has continued to pay full salary for staff who took extended medical leave, both due to physical and mental health issues

“Provide examples of any additional activities and programs implemented that support a dynamic, healthy and happy workplace.”
Our award-winning Community/Team Engagement Program was recognized as ‘Best in BC’ by the BCTIA at the 2015 Technology Impact Awards. In winning, judges cited our:

  • UNLIMITED Community Days
  • Personalized Volunteering
  • Social & Charitable Volunteering

Our sense of pride and achievement is infectious. Lefties know they are making a difference in someone else’s life and their own. Examples:

  • Distributing care packages to homeless of Downtown Eastside
  • Cooking meals at Ronald McDonald House.
  • Supporting “A Boy Named Nicholas” (charity for Maple Ridge boy with a devastating disease)
  • Adoption of a local family through Christmas hamper drive.
  • ToughMudder Whistler, supporting the Wounded Warriors Project, including weekly fitness sessions. We got fit. We gave back. We bonded. Every Lefty gained a sense of pride and personal accomplishment.
  • Beer O’Clock Fridays celebrate our weekly wins
  • Hype Music Mornings
  • 24-hour Global Hackathons between teams in Canada and Bangladesh

“List the company resources dedicated to current activities and programs to create a healthy workplace, including financial investments and staff resources dedicated to your activities and programs.”
We have a dedicated Employee Experience Manager who champions our culture and creates an employee experience that promotes happy, healthy, inspiring, and passionate Lefties.
Programs and financial commitments:
[financial numbers removed from this public blog post]

  • $XXXX a week to purchase fresh fruit for all staff
  • $XXXX in 2014/2015 for twice-weekly fitness classes and ToughMudder event participation
  • $XXXX/monthly to be mentored by an outside “Culture Guru”
  • $XXXX per employee in professional development funds and paid time off, including courses at BCIT, Stanford University, and numerous conferences, and workshops
  •  Uncapped budget for Culture Club initiatives (social committee)
  • Uncapped budget for UNLIMITED Community Days where Lefties are paid to volunteer their time (often during the work day) and make a difference in their community
  • Relocated office to the suburbs = decreased commuting time (i.e. each Lefty saves 8.5 hours per week in commuting vs previous job, which equals 8,000 hours saved annually)

“Provide proof of your company’s commitment to providing a happy and healthy workplace.”
The very essence of our brand is reflected by living our 10 Core Values. With our Legendary Lefty program, employees nominate peers whenever they feel the colleague has demonstrated or lived a core value. Every month, one “Legendary Lefty” is chosen from their numerous peer nominations. It is clear from these commendations that our Lefties truly believe in and relate to the company’s core values.

Our Core

Be Incredible

Keep Score

Take Responsibility

Think Different

Little Things Matter

Impact Your Community

Imagine the Impossible

Family is Important

Make Your Mark

Failure is an Option

1.       2015 Technology Impact Award – Community Engagement http://www.bctia.org/Resources/News/BCTIA-News/2015/6/4/2015-Technology-Impact-Award-Winners-Announced
2.       People feel valued when they have a sense of purpose and a common goal that they rally behind. Our core product, YO!, is out to change the world and allow every Lefty to make a lasting mark and make their world a better place. Watch this video to see the dream of what our Lefties are trying to create: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vj13ZIgHUoA
3.       Our Facebook page here (https://www.facebook.com/leftofthedot/photos_stream) where you will find:

  • Christmas Hamper Handout photos (great cause!)
  • Photos of a scary Halloween in the office (coinciding with a visit from MLA Doug Bing)
  • Action Shots of our 2nd Place Tech Pong Champion (Go Josh!)
  • Photo Gallery from our family fundraiser BBQ for ‘A Boy Named Nicholas’ (great cause!)
  • Photos from our talk about Social Media and Digital Marketing at Meadowridge School (kids today!)
  • Corporate outing – Disc Golf (whoohoo!)
  • Photos of our tour for Friends in Need Food Bank (great cause!)
  • Pics of our team celebrating BCTIA TIA Award win for Community Engagement (yay!)
  • 19.1km of our team sweating together at ToughMudder Whistler (look at that mud!)
  • Celebrating Healthy Living Week with wheat-grass smoothies for all (yuck!)
  • Cooking Dinner at Ronald McDonald House (great cause!)
  • Photos of our Community Open House in celebration of Entrepreneurship (party!)
  • Pics from our Family Easter Egg Hunt and Brunch (hop along little bunny!)
  • A few blog posts about how our 10 Core Values are driving our product decisions and recruitment strategies
  • Links, stories, media mentions, photos, and videos about our breakthrough product YO! and how it is allowing every Lefty to make their Mark.


Anchored by our core values, Left of the Dot is a double unicorn-in-the-making. Yes, we are growing, but we are doubly rare as we have always placed an emphasis on “what do we have our people becoming” vs. just “what do we have our people doing”. We feel if our people become more they will achieve more and thus impact more lives. Health and wellness—both physical and mental—is a big anchor for this and one we are very proud of.
Supporting each other through health and wellness initiatives will always result in immeasurable dividends via personal, socioeconomic, and environmental benefits. Although we will grow larger as we continue to expand and innovate, our belief in our people’s health and wellness and our love, care, and hope for the community, will remain a core value.
We sincerely thank you for your consideration to be recognized as BC’s Best Workplace.
While there are a lot of great companies out there, I think our team of Lefties is the best there is. And whatever the outcome, I am sure we will win the after party.

Making the Case for Investing in Canadian Technology Companies

Making the Case for Investing in Canadian Technology Companies

Canadian Tech Companies Are On The Rise!

I had two really unique opportunities this week in my role as Chief Marketing Officer and Co-Founder of a Maple Ridge, BC-based Canadian techn company. Maple Ridge is on the outskirts of Vancouver for my American readers. I throw that little geography lesson and autobiographical statement right there in that first sentence for a reason. It is important to understanding the context of my argument.
The first opportunity was an AceTech afternoon at the BC Tech Summit with Alabama-based
Greg Crabtree, CPA and author of the book Simple Numbers for Better Business Decisions
. The second was a 24-hour hackathon undertaken by our teams in Canada and Bangladesh. We had 15 teams, and about 60 people competing.
The Greg Crabtree session made me think. [Remember: this is the interpretation of someone who lives and breathes marketing and product and not someone who marvels at financial spreadsheets… though I do like my traffic acquisition projections and analytics]. To summarize his thoughts, Crabtree speaks of four forces of cash flow: taxes, debt, core capital, and profits. He also spoke with a great comedic touch (especially for an accountant) that each dollar earned in Revenue is not the same as dollars earned in Gross Margin, and that every organization needs to pay attention to the Contribution Margin of key departments, management, teams, or product lines.
And while we covered a lot of accountant-speak (and over 90 slides) throughout the afternoon, my biggest take away was that “success” comes down to the operational efficiency of key management plus labour output and utilization.
And while he is the world-renowned accountant, and I am simply the marketing guy, sitting in the audience, I found myself arguing with some of his logic because of its limitations. I can agree that operational efficiency and team output are important. When we hire, we always say we hire for potential, because, whether you are coming in fresh out of school, or you are well seasoned in your field, we hire talent for where it is going to be rather than where it is presently. Crabtree speaks to some of this, however I felt that a lot of his approach is dedicated to maintaining the status quo and eeking out minor profit changes via cost control and efficiency. There doesn’t seem to be much room for innovation or the value creation that comes from the creative abilities of the team. He did acknowledge afterwards that a winning culture and taking care of employees does attract better talent (at competitive rates), so we did agree on that aspect.
I will come back to Crabtree’s thought process on his bigger points, but I first need to describe the 24hour hackathon we held later in the week. This contributes heavily to my argument in favour of investing in Canadian tech companies, and doing it right now.
This was our second team-wide hackathon. In our vernacular, ‘hacking’ is creative problem solving using technology and marketing. Each project our teams tackle, adheres to a theme [this week’s theme was “Anything  mobile”] and the hack starts with a problem that the team is trying to solve. This may be a problem that is faced by the organization, by our existing users/customers, the Community, or other potential users around the world.
We start at concurrent times with our teams half-way around the world. Our team in Bangladesh started at night last time, so this time we started at 8:00PM Wednesday night and went all the way through 8:00PM Thursday night, while Bangladesh went from 10.00 am to 10.00 am. All of us are fueled by coffee, Red Bull, and a whole lot of can-do-anything-is-possible attitude.
A lot of great projects and ideas came out of the event, but the highest value output, for us, is the process and encouraging innovation. It is about risking failure. It is about imagining the impossible.
So why is now the time to invest in Canadian tech companies?  Because the low Canadian dollar is creating a labour efficiency that gives companies like ours an unfair advantage over every startup in the USA, especially those in Silicon Valley. The Canadian dollar is at a 13-year low. When you combine this with innovative programs like Canada’s SR&ED tax incentive program (Scientific Research & Experimental Development), the market advantage is even greater. For those that are eligible, a significant percentage of the engineering and R&D salaries can be clawed back, provided the problem being tackled is considered to be, amongst other criteria, “experimental development” and “ work undertaken for the purpose of achieving technological advancement”.
I would, happily, stand our technologists and innovators head-to-head against any idea from Silicon Valley. And it is not just our team of Lefties that I am talking about. The great ideas and talent that were pervasive at the BC Tech Summit should make everyone take notice of what is possible in our own backyard.
So in that way, Crabtree is bang on right. Companies that achieve success will be those that can exploit the market inefficiency, maximize contribution margins, and drive higher output from their teams. The real secret is that technology output is not restricted by geographic boundaries. A tech customer is just as likely to be in Bangalore as they would be on the Jersey Shore. Technology is global.
So why is now a good time to be investing in Canadian Technology companies?
Because we are about to win, eh.

2015 BC Technology Innovation Award Winners!

Left of the Dot Wins BC Tech Award for Community Engagement

2015 Technology Impact Awards (TIAs) celebrate BC’s best companies, people, and innovations
MAPLE RIDGE, BC, CANADA – June 05, 2015 – Left of the Dot Media Inc. (LOTD) is pleased to announce that it has been awarded the 2015 Technology Impact Award (TIA) from the BC Technology Industry Association. The award is given annually to a BC company who most demonstrates, “through the engagement of their employees and as part of their culture, the practice of corporate social responsibility programs or initiatives that have a direct impact on the community in which they live, work, and play.”
Founded in 2010, Left of the Dot lives, works, and plays in Vancouver’s suburb of Maple Ridge, BC. With 24 full-time staff in Maple Ridge and another 60+ in two development offices in Bangladesh, the company builds and manages web and mobile brands based on high-value domain names. The company’s most recent project, YO.com, is focussed on connecting the next billion unconnected users with a free mobile app that lets people share and connect without the Internet.
“Left of the Dot is deliberately located in Maple Ridge rather than downtown Vancouver because we want our team to be a part of the community,” said Chris Jensen, Co-Founder and CEO. “Living and working locally allows the team to attend school events, manage day care responsibilities, and do the little things that make not just our employees’ lives a little better, but also make a meaningful impact on the world around us.”
Said Jensen’s co-founder John Lyotier, who accepted the award on behalf of company, “When Chris and I started 5 years ago, we established the idea of ‘Community’ as one of our core tenets that was going to guide a lot of our business decisions. I am proud of our team and what this recognition means, and I thank the BCTIA for recognizing the contribution that every Lefty has made in his or her community.”
At its core, the Community Engagement program for Left of the Dot believes that every employee defines the word ‘Community’ a little bit differently, and as such each employee is given an unlimited number of paid Community Days to volunteer and make a difference with that which is important to them, whether this is volunteering at a child’s school, coaching youth sports, being a Big Brother, or other social and civic initiatives. The end result is a 100% participation rate and a much more engaged and motivated team.
Continued Lyotier, “I think what may have made us unique in the judges’ eyes is that we are also not just defining community as being involved in Maple Ridge (or Langley, Coquitlam, Burnaby, or Vancouver… or wherever our Lefties might live), but through our new YO! brand, they saw that we are impacting the global community while connecting those who cannot afford to connect. YO! is empowering people around the world—from BC to Bangladesh—and improving lives in the process. How cool is that!”
About Left of the Dot Media Inc.
Established in 2010, Left of the Dot builds and incubates web and mobile properties, including Christmas.com, RentByOwner.com, Cruiseships.com, and countless others. The company’s latest project is YO.com. YO! is a free mobile app and patent-pending communication protocol that empowers users to share and connect hyperlocally without the Internet. For more information about the company, visit www.LeftOfTheDot.com
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Media Contact
Sarah Livsey
Marketing Communications Manager
Phone: 604-477-5686
Email: sarah@leftofthedot.com

PPC Double Serving with Bing

PPC Double Serving with Bing

Are Top Ad Spots Being Served Up Twice?

Just the other day, I read an interesting article from Ginny Marvin via PPC double serving in Search Engine Land. However, I just noticed something with our PPC campaign on Bing (for our RentalHomes.com brand) that I hadn’t seen elsewhere, so I thought I would share. It appears that Bing is either testing or has made a switch that if your ad is appearing in either the first or second ad slot, you are also served up at the bottom of the page. In essence, they are double-serving your ad to the web searcher.
From a monetization perspective, it makes sense for Bing. As an advertiser in positions #1 or #2, we’re paying more for a click than the traditional person who is appearing on the right side or at the bottom. My assumption is that whether a visitor clicks on the top or the bottom ad, we are paying as though we are in position #1. The advertisers who are bidding to the bottom are also less relevant to the searcher (more often than not), so a typical searcher may even deem the results to be more relevant to their needs, so Bing wins on all accounts
It is always interesting to see how the search networks are displaying your advertising and see their motivations.
In case Bing changes things, here is a screen grab.