– Spread The Word!

Craigslist.orgAbout a month ago, after some work related conversation, I ended up chatting and doing some catch-up with my ‘virtual’ counterpart from Oregon. He was telling me of a home he just bought in Oregon and some roommates that he had picked up to help out with the rent. I assumed that he had used some online roommate resource like or, yet it turns out that he actually went with The name was immediately familiar to me, yet had skipped my mind as something I could’ve used. Then it struck me, this must be the most underutilized resource in Arizona! I’m not sure what Arizona’s Craiglist usage statistics are, but I’m willing to bet that it is nowhere near Nor Cal or Oregon’s.

Case in point: My best bud from Nor Cal just moved from Palo Alto to Sunnyvale and was on the hunt for some dinner wear and cutlery for his new place. A quick search on Craigslist found a family that was in a hurry to move and had a brand new set available. According to the father, he posted his yard sale listing sometime after 1am and immediately began receiving email inquiries; someone even sent an email at 3am. At 6am that same morning, the family was awakened by the sweet sound of door bells as someone unexpectedly dropped by to buy some items.

Word of Mouth

I was curious to find out why Craigslist was so regional. Circa 1994, founder Craig Newmark began a small email distribution list as a way to help spread the word about local events and cool happenings in the San Francisco area. The distribution list grew through word of mouth, and eventually people started asking if they could use the list to spread the word about apartments for rent, jobs, and stuff for sale. The distribution list eventually grew too big for its britches, so Mr. Newmark created a listserv and named it Craigslist, and the rest is history.

Now get this, Craigslist was originally spread through word of mouth and it has remained that way to this very day. Cities are listed based on the amount of people who request it, and the company never advertises or runs promotions. They also provide free listings with the exception of job postings (according to the site, “A lot of HR people and recruiters tell us that craigslist is the most effective job site in the San Francisco Bay Area.”).

Craigslist Mantra – “Doing well by doing good” & “Give people a break” & “Giving people a voice”

I guess you couldn’t expect more from a site whose favicon is a peace symbol. What I really admire about this company is that they’ve put their customers first and have given them a sense of belonging by making them part of a community. It’s a community built around trust, honesty, and the philosophy that doing something good for someone in turn makes you feel good (what goes around comes around). In this day and age of internet predators, spammers, and scam artists, (I consider them to be all on the same level) it’s refreshing to know that there are good people out there becoming successful by staying honest, humble, and true (as a side note, even Craig Newmark himself is dedicated to answering emails and providing customer service).

Craigslist has made such an impact on me that I hope to one day be able to make my customers feel as if they’re part of one big interconnected community, one that values their patronage and gives them a voice. And for this reason alone, I pledge to spread the word on! So when you have something to sell, a personal ad to post, an apartment for rent, a car for sale, or vice versa, be sure to visit!

The Closet Entrepreneur

Post Scriptum: Here are some of the articles I found on Craig Newmark and, enjoy! Mission & History
SFGate Article Article

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One Comment

  1. Jimmy

    Check out…I think this site is better than Craigslist for services, and they donate money to, the campaign to end world poverty!

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