Fanfou is a social networking website in China that was inspired by Twitter. During the first half of 2009, the number of member accounts on Fanfou increased from 300 thousand to 1 million.
The greatest fear that may come true for an entrepreneur is to see the destruction of their goal just after experiencing exponential development.
But for a select handful, it was just the beginning of their journey.
Wang Xing, the man who founded Fanfou, brushed his tears away and then got to work on his next business endeavor. He established Meituan-Dianping, a company that specializes in the acquisition of online businesses with a current market value of more than one trillion Hong Kong dollars.
Zhang YiMing, who had previously served as the chief technical officer of Fanfou, established ByteDance at about the same time. ByteDance is now the most valuable start-up business anywhere in the world.
It’s possible that you are unfamiliar with the name “ByteDance.” But I’m sure you’re familiar with TikTok, which is now the most popular social networking tool for uploading short videos.
Who exactly is this Zhang YiMing, and what exactly is the backstory surrounding him?
Take the Risk to Dream
Zhang YiMing attended Nankai University in China for his education in software engineering. After receiving his diploma in 2005, he immediately got along with two other people to start working on an IAM system for business customers. On the other hand, he quickly realized that he had entered the market much before it was ready. The initiative was not successful since the notion of collaborative workplaces was not widely accepted in China at the time.
Stay Hungry, Stay Young
“I think young people have many advantages: they don’t set up unnecessary rules and boundaries upon themselves; they don’t have too much of a big ego to defend; they can often break the routine; they are very hardworking; they are uncompromising; and they are not sleek.I believe that young people have many advantages: they do not impose unnecessary rules and boundaries on themselves; they do not have a large ego to — Zhang YiMing
After the unsuccessful attempt to construct the IAM system, Zhang began his first employment after graduating from high school in February 2006 with Kuxun. He worked there full time. It was a search engine for making reservations for hotels and flights in China. In a short period of time, he earned a reputation for being both diligent in his job and intellectually inquisitive.
It was not to make the boss happy in order to get a larger bonus at the end of the year.
“There is no clear line between what I should be doing and what I should not be doing while I am at work. After I have done my task, I will gladly assist my coworkers in finding solutions to their difficulties if I am able to do so. During that time, I had read a significant portion of the code included in codebase. When a new employee starts working here, if I have the time, I will go through everything with them once again. “I can develop my talents by elaborating,” Zhang YiMing said. “It’s a win-win.”
Keep a positive outlook even when things aren’t going your way.
Zhang left Kuxun in 2008 and went on to have a short stint working for Microsoft before joining Fanfou. This was his first experience working for a start-up company, which ended up being unsuccessful.
Zhang started his first startup, an online real estate search engine called 99fang.com, in 2009. It was established in 2009.
Zhang had a persistent attitude of endeavor since he was under the impression that greater things was in store for him.
Maintain a Confident Belief in Your Strategic Vision
In 2011, Zhang saw a significant shift in user behavior away from desktops and toward cell phones. He had a hunch that he may find a more lucrative position elsewhere. Zhang YiMing made the important choice to hire professional management to take over as CEO of 99fang.com. He left the company in 2012 to start ByteDance. ByteDance’s main goal was to create online places to publish creative work and news, all of which were backed by an algorithm that made suggestions.
But what exactly is an algorithm for making recommendations?
Have you ever found yourself wondering why connected advertising for Facebook suddenly appears in your phone, as if someone had just peeked at the WhatsApp chat you had just sent 20 seconds ago? This is an example of a recommendation algorithm in action.
When Cao Yi, the founder of Source Code Capital, first heard from Zhang about the concept for ByteDance in 2014, he was a great skeptic. Zhang was the one who told him about it.
This recommendation system has been a complete and total flop despite the many billions of dollars that have been poured into developing it. What gives you the impression that you can?” asked Cao Yi.
After thirty minutes, Zhang YiMing presented Cao Yi with the following explanation and forecast, which caused Cao Yi to alter his viewpoint.
“In the age of personal computers, people gravitated to the locations of the computers. It was all about the search engines. Because there was a lack of data to help understand the consumers, the recommendation algorithm did not contribute a significant amount of value. The mobile phone is always with the user in the world of mobile internet.
There is a far deeper degree of connection that must be established in order to collect more helpful data and, as a result, provide superior suggestions. The quality of the recommendations improves, and as a result, the users are more inclined to follow them, which results in improved data quality. A positive reinforcement is formed as a result of this. We are on the cusp of a new age, one that will see the recommendation system experience meteoric expansion.
After that, Cao Yi made the decision to invest, and he ended up getting a return on his money that was forty times higher.
“Many people predicted the rise of mobile Internet access through cell phones. But he is the first to use machine-based suggestions, while big companies like Alibaba, Tencent, and Baidu still use human editors, according to a writer on entrepreneurship named Li Zhi Gang.
A Start From Scratch
Zhang doesn’t want to just rest on his laurels with news sites like Toutiao and short video services like Tik Tok. Instead, he wants to grow his online empire even more.
ByteDance launched a brand-new business division dedicated to eCommerce in June 2020. Well-established firms like Alibaba, JD.com, and Pinduoduo will have an uphill battle as a result of this direct competition.