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Meet Chris Wampler of UpSellit in Agoura Hills

Today we’d like to introduce you to Chris Wampler.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I started playing with artificial intelligence while I was studying computer science at UC Berkeley. I created a chat bot called Vixen Love that was largely a party trick… I didn’t go to the coolest parties. A few years after I graduated, I found myself working at a live chat company and I pitched the idea of using my artificial intelligence engine. Luckily for me, they didn’t have any interest in my idea so I decided to try it on my own.

We’re called UpSellit because we started out using my chat bots to up-sell online shoppers. We were profitable within 3 months and started testing out new ways of using AI. We discovered that by engaging abandoning shoppers, our chat agents could address the reasons for site abandonment and convince people to come back and complete their purchase.

Using the insights, we were collecting in our agent’s chat scripts, we began experimenting with new conversion strategies. We built out an analytics engine, email and mobile retargeting solutions and a website personalization platform. We now work with some of the web’s largest brands to deliver them with incremental gains in profitability.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
A privately held company will always have its bumps in the road, but everything pales in comparison to the loss of my business partner, Tom Kogler. Not only was he an exceptional husband, father, and friend, but he provided the insight, balance, and leadership that could only come with years of experience. Nothing could have prepared me for his passing. I miss him deeply and have done my best to run the company in his spirit.

We’d love to hear more about your business.
UpSellit designs and develops conversion strategies for internet retailers. We partner with large companies like Samsung, Bebe and Cost Plus World Market to figure out ways to convince abandoning shoppers to purchase, new customers to purchase more, and existing customers to come back and buy again.

In an economy of outsourcing everything from software to support, I’m proud to say that we’ve been able to keep everything in-house, under one roof. All of our technologies are home-grown and our support team is all LA-local. My commitment to control has created a company that moves quickly, builds real relationships with our clients and innovates new technologies that work seamlessly with a constantly evolving online marketplace.

What were you like growing up?
I was a pretty normal kid growing up. I loved (and still love) video games and baseball. Those two interests came together one summer when I locked myself in my room and spent all of my time playing Baseball Allstars on Nintendo. I was never the big man on campus, but I wasn’t a nerd either. I had a good group of friends and an incredible family that supported me in everything I did.

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