The secret of Alibaba, largest global IPO ever

Since last week, the world is all abuzz about Alibaba, the Chinese Internet giant that listed its American depository shares on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol “BABA.” Unless you happen to be living under a rock, you know about the China’s answer to Amazon, eBay and Chase Bank all rolled into one, and their $25 Billion biggest IPO ever, dwarfing Facebook’s IPO. And for once, instead of listening analysts about the financial brilliance that led to such wealth creation, we can turn to marketing experts to understand the company’s CEO and his simple success formula: “Forget about the competition, just focus on your customers.” Jack Ma should be a household name worldwide. Not as the richest man in China (he is) but for his customer-led approach to business. Marketers take note: this is the essence of finding the relevance of the new social media. Photo by Ryan Pyle for The New York Times