Justin Shimoon is the founder and CEO of AffinityClick Inc., the makers of Hushed, a top-five grossing iOS/Android app for over five years.
Justin’s love for technology and marketing started at an early age and followed him through his years at university. After graduating from Carleton University with a degree in electrical engineering, as well as a minor in telecommunications, Justin didn’t waste any time before jumping into the internet marketing industry. In 2000, he founded his first company, Sitebrand, a digital marketing company. Sitebrand helped companies personalize the online experience with relevant messaging. Behind Sitebrand was a team of seasoned personalization experts. At the time, Justin didn’t know it, but this company would help him develop as a leader and CEO, which would become invaluable later in life as he started additional companies.
During this tenure as CEO at Sitebrand, Justin developed his leadership style, fostered the development of close to 40 employees at the company’s peak, and became an expert on digital marketing and the ever-evolving industry. As Sitebrand quickly grew and established a major presence, Justin evolved into a prominent business leader in Ontario, Canada. Tasked with growing a team and developing a positive work culture at an early age, Justin embraced the challenge head on and ever since, he has been intentional about professional development and challenging himself to become a better leader each day.
Today, Justin uses the experiences and lessons learned from his first startup companies to shape his decision making skills at Hushed. Considered a leader in the VOIP telecommunication space, Justin and the team at Hushed have built a successful company with over seven million downloads, 500 million phone calls, 1 billion million text messages, and utilized in over 45 countries. Despite the large-scale adoption by Hushed users, Justin is most proud of the 4.5 star rating on the Apple App Store, with over 1,000 reviews.
Justin is quick to share that it was the culmination of hard work and the ability to predict which features users would want that allowed Hushed to grow to the level it has. For Justin and the team at Hushed, the excited lies in knowing they have only just scratched the surface. While Justin remains engaged in the VOIP industry and working to make Hushed the worldwide leader, he is also passionate about the technology startup scene in Canada. Justin enjoys learning about emerging technology like artificial intelligence and cryptocurrency. His curiosity and drive to always learn is infectious to those around him
Justin has started this website to serve as an outlet to share his thoughts around leadership, marketing, and how startup founders can create a product and culture scales. Throughout his journey as a founder, Justin has learned valuable lessons that he hopes to share with his employees and others that are in similar stages in their career.
Named to 40 Under 40 list
Recipient of the Wes Nicol Award
Starting a new business can be such an exciting opportunity. However, due diligence should be exercised in the early stages of business establishment to ensure that all necessary steps are well thought of. Laying the right foundation ensures that the business has higher chances of succeeding in the later stages. Among the important, crucial things that you should do as a prospecting business owner includes learning as much as possible on pertinent information. Here at 3 important things to learn before starting a business to increase your chances of succeeding.
Learn on your area of investment
Your business idea exists within a given area of business investment. Before moving on to establish your business and actualize your idea, it is highly advisable to ensure that you take as much time as possible to learn virtually everything that regards that industry. Such learning should be adapted and localized to your particular locality where you intend to establish your business. This ensures that you are well aware of important aspects such as competition, challenges that you may face, legal restrictions, and prospects of success. Acquiring such education increases your prospects of success.
Seek expert opinion and advice
Before starting your business, you should endeavor to work with the various experts available in the market to ensure you understand pertinent information. Among the key experts that you should endeavor to incorporate in your business include legal experts. Legal professionals will give you the basic outline of what the law in your country stipulates regarding new businesses. Important issues such as taxation law, employment law, intellectual property, and business-business and business-customer contracts should be clearly understood.
Have business partners
The success of your business is also closely tied to the kind of people you associate yourself within the business. As a business owner, you need to surround yourself with professionals with different areas of competency and expertise. Firstly, you need to have a strong co-founder who can deputize your responsibilities. The co-founder will come in and in helping provide checks and balances to ensure that the right decisions are made in running the business. Other professionals that you will probably need to have in your business include a business mentor or consultant, a certified public accountant, and a human resource professional.
Any business owners understand the importance of utilizing social media for marketing goods and services their entities offer to the public. Outlets such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are well-known and commonly used. That said, there are other emerging social media platforms companies and organizations can use to promote their products. Take a look at a few of the budding social profiles that can help your business thrive.
What began as a woman’s dating application, has morphed into an emerging professional networking site. This online destination enables users to upload their resumes, disclose special skills and provide work-related samples,, and projects that can be viewed by other members. Such a site can not only increase one’s professional network but potentially elicit new job opportunities.
This site has been known to many as an outlet for people to pose questions on various topics and have them answered by individuals with knowledge on said subjects. In recent times, Quora has expanded as a reputable online business forum. Site administrators now permit organizations with knowledge about given subjects to share their expertise with the online viewing public. An opportunity such as this, allows various business entities the chance to showcase their knowledge while promoting the services they offer.
This site is a professional networking profile that encourages the establishment of connections and collaborations within the business world. That said, what makes The Dots a bit more unique is its focus on visual aids. Ergo, businesses that perform work or provide goods or services that can be conveyed through visual mediums like photos and videos stand the best chance of enjoying a significant benefit from this avenue.
Ning enables businesses to customize a professional online presence. However, because the site is responsive to a business’s needs, you will need to answer several questions prior to opening an account with them. Such inquiries include the exact content the business wishes to include, the audience being targeted and what the specific method of communication will be used to target those prospective clients or customers. Individuals who visit Ning often do so for quite specific interactions. Therefore, if a prospective business’s site is not specifically customized, visitors might lose interest in it.
This site enables companies to upload short video messages and advertisements. Much like Snapchat, TikTok is most often frequented by teenagers and young adults. Ergo, businesses providing goods or services that cater to such age groups might benefit the most from establishing an account.
When you are a new company or a business trying to reach out through new channels and audiences, it’s important to stay up to date on the latest social media profiles that have been created. Each one is making waves to create more connections through a different means of social media.
Anyone within the marketing world understands there is a substantial difference between traditional marketing and digital marketing. Studies have shown that most consumers will use their digital devices to research and look at reviews before purchasing a product online. Most everything happens on a mobile device these days which is precisely why companies produce apps and create mobile-friendly websites.
Consumers want the convenience of shopping online and being able to do everything at the touch of their fingertips. This is why digital marketing has become such a vast wave of marketing over the years. But, it is true that there is still a place and time for traditional marketing in this world.
Traditional marketing deals with print ads, outdoor advertising such as billboards, direct mailings and postcards, and television commercials. Although so much has been digitized nowadays, there are still a large number of people who watch television with commercials and buy magazines that include dozens of advertisements. The super bowl is a huge advocate of traditional marketing because there are so many views that watch specifically for the commercials.
The problem with traditional marketing is the costs associated with it. The cost to print an ad and make a commercial that will reach a targeted audience can be substantial, especially to small businesses that don’t have the capital to do so. Although these are marketing tacts can work wonders for companies who have the money to do so, digital marketing has created solutions to the ongoing cost problem.
Analytics can be utilized in digital marketing and assist in targeting specific audiences and their needs. It creates a way to use your dollars towards digital advertising that gains interest which serves as a metric you can measure very quickly. Many businesses are adopting these tactics to further their marketing tactics without spending big money.
Although digital marketing is starting to take the reins in the marketing world, that doesn’t mean that traditional marketing is out. There are many different industries where digital marketing is key including the automobile, travel, and fashion industries. It essential to figure out your marketing budget and what is going to work best for your company and target audience. There are many ways to market products, but the key is finding the best tactics for your budget.