All posts by Yev

Making Lemonade: The Importance of Social Media and Community

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/social-media-marketing-strategy/

Social media manager Yev at his desk at Backblaze

Spending all day on Twitter and Reddit shouldn’t really be a job, but here we are. With every organization from a local coffee shop to mutli-billion dollar enterprise having a social media presence, community and social media management has become not only a job, but a career path that tens of thousands of people have adopted in the last two decades.

Many still question the value, if any, of KPIs (key performance indicators) for tracking social media, and the overall return on investment of a dedicated social media presence. With that in mind, I wanted to share why Backblaze continues to invest in maintaining strong community and social relationships.

Having a strong social presence has not only helped us build a community of fans and advocates, but it has also helped drive serious growth, playing a large part in helping us achieve nearly 50% growth and an ARR of over $30M.

Spoilers — Key Takeaways

In this post I’ll discuss the takeaways below and dive in to two case-studies where bringing all these together helped Backblaze navigate some tricky situations (more on those below):

  • Social media can be fickle. Finding the right balance for your brand between being funny, informative, and helpful can be hard but it is paramount if you want to cultivate the right kind of audience and community.
  • Empathy is important, especially if you provide social tech support — people writing into support are usually not having a great day. Very few of our support tickets are simple praise (and when they are, we share them with the whole company). Being empathetic can help craft your responses in a way that does not put your customers on the defensive, and even if you can’t help them, being understanding of their situation goes a long way in helping them feel heard.
  • Do not use standard answers. As much as I can, I try to use hand-crafted, artisanal responses for every person that writes in. Even if you get a flurry of similar questions that require the same steps to solve (say there’s an outage, or there’s a popular blog post that yields identical questions), addressing people by their names and individualizing responses helps immensely and puts a more approachable face on your company.
  • Some days are going to be bad: not all news is good news. Sometimes there will be a particularly bad day on the horizon that you see coming and start dreading. Know that it’ll pass and get yourself mentally prepared for the onslaught. Sometimes knowing that there will be controversy will help you craft your messaging in advance. Try to think through the edge cases and if you don’t have a good answer, tell people that you’ll find one and get back to them.
  • Follow up. If you are in the middle of a busy day, try to get to everyone within a few hours. If you cannot, flag them and reply later. You want people to have warm and fuzzies when they think about you. Hearing back from you on social, even a day later, can absolutely have that effect. Making sure no one falls through the cracks helps people feel heard and a part of your community, and shows that community members are valued.

Backblaze’s Social Philosophy — Branding First, KPIs Last

Contrary to popular belief, Backblaze is not a large organization (though we keep staffing up, check out our backblaze.com/jobs page!) Our social media team consists of an army of one, Yev (me), and a few folks on staff who also have logins and can act as backups in case I go on vacation. It’s good to have backups.

How did I get involved with the social side of Backblaze? I joined Backblaze in 2011 as part of our Customer Support team. Natasha, a former contractor (and now one of our product marketers) ran our social media efforts — essentially responding to questions and posting new blog entries and interesting tidbits. A few months into the job I took over the outbound social media posts for the company from Natasha, and a little while later took over both aspects of our social channels. Natasha still helps out as one of the people on the social backup rotation.

My philosophy on social and community stems from my strong belief in customer service. I’ve always encouraged having a support aspect to our social channels, which means being communicative when we have issues and often handling simple support cases before referring folks to our customer support team. Since backup and data storage are serious business, every opportunity to offer support is a good one. Twitter, Reddit, Facebook, and other platforms can also act as an early detection canary when people are having issues. That said, I try to avoid debugging issues in a public forum and have found that a lot of people prefer a relevant knowledge base link or a shortcut over going into details about their computer on Twitter. Being receptive to people on different social platforms and giving them individualized answers shows that real people are paying attention to them and that they’re not just talking to a brick wall. I consider these efforts to help customers less about customer support and more about brand-building, but ultimately, it’s just the kind of company that we want Backblaze to be.

Is There Value in Measuring Social Media KPIs?

We’ve historically focused our social efforts more on the brand than on KPIs for several reasons. A common mistake people make is to view social media as just another direct response channel. While social can certainly drive traffic and sales, it has the potential to be far more important for overall business growth and brand building. Focusing too narrowly on direct response KPIs not only undervalues social’s overall benefit but can also move focus onto the wrong activities.

That said, KPIs are not entirely worthless. Some of the most common KPIs include: clicks, views, mentions, trackable purchases, as well as a host of other more narrowly focused engagement metrics. While it’s great to have tracking and to know how many folks are purchasing as a result of your social activities, using those metrics as the sole arbiter of whether or not your social strategy is working is, I believe, a bit short-sighted. Plus, if you’re a shrewd social media manager, you can easily manipulate the KPIs. Need to goose your click numbers for the month? Here come the brand-relevant kitten gifs, but how is that good for your business? You know what is good for your business? Getting people to recommend you.

The Real Value of Social Media

Social proof is one of the single biggest influencers on a customer’s purchase decision. Regardless of whether your product is consumer-focused or enterprise-driven, your social channels are building out your community. That building of community, in turn, builds brand awareness and positive vibes. The better the community and social interactions are with your company, the more your message gets amplified. When things are good that means recommending your service, and when things are bad it means that they’ll be more willing to give you the benefit of the doubt.

Your social channels’ worth is hard to measure day to day, but don’t listen to people who say it can’t be measured at all. Measuring growth takes understanding what your goals are and whether your community can help attain them. You can start to see the benefits when people in various online places stand up for you, or field questions on your behalf in public forums (bonus points if they field them correctly). All those things mean you are doing a good job of educating your fans. Having customers and fans who help get your point across is a wonderful thing, and as I go into a bit later, can lead directly to revenue.

Cloud Backup Suggestions on Reddit

Reddit Recommendations

Comment on Twitter: "We use Backblaze. Love it!"

Unsolicited Twitter Recommendations Are Great

Insight #1

Focus on the customer impact and business results, then determine the right metrics for your business, knowing there may not be any. A branding-first approach of using social media as an extension of your support organization can make customers happier and can reduce complaints. The fewer help tickets coming in, the more kudos you get from your support team (and it lowers your operating expenses). Plus, being outwardly communicative and having quick response times can ease the customer’s anxiety in times of stress. If you can successfully do all that, it can lead to customers who are truly brand advocates and are more likely to amplify your message, recommending you, or giving you the benefit of the doubt.

My Daily Social Media Tools

I’ve covered the importance of engaging community and the strategy we take to make sure those community needs are met. That still leaves the question of how to actually do it. To that end, I’d like to take you through a typical day of mine.

My day starts by checking Twitter. It is the most real-time firehose of information and can act as a harbinger for how the day is going to go. I use the Fenix app on my phone to separate my personal account from my work account. All the Backblaze tweets go to Fenix, while my personal Twitter is tied to the default app. This separation helps prevent me from accidentally posting to the corporate stream. The other benefit is that the notifications become separate so I know whether to investigate quickly if it’s a Fenix notification, or let it slide for a personal one. Once Twitter has been scanned, I respond to the people who need help, either by sending them a helpful link or routing them to our support team.

When I arrive in the office, TweetDeck takes over. If you’ve never seen it, to some it looks a bit overwhelming. There is a series of columns, each one keeping track of separate lookups and keywords. I have streams set to follow @Backblaze, the term “Backblaze,” and some of the hashtags that we use frequently. It’s also a great way to see what competitors are up to, and see if you can add any helpful information to conversations that might be about your organization (e.g. someone is considering you and your competitors and is asking for opinions). An additional benefit is that you can gauge the general sentiment that customers have towards you. If most of the tweets mentioning your competitors are positive, that’s great and you have some work to do in making sure you’re thought of in the same way. If most of the mentions are negative, that can be a great time to jump in and try to win some people over, especially if their issue is with something that you excel in — just be nice.

While TweetDeck acts as a general firehose for Twitter, it can’t monitor what’s happening elsewhere in cyberspace. For that, I use Mention. It’s essentially an aggregator for the mentions that your keywords receive all over the internet. It is pretty close to real-time, only lagging by a few minutes. There are more robust tools available (Hootsuite, Sprout Social, and Buffer are all good robust tools), but for the money, Mention does a great job finding keywords from social media sites, blogs, news articles, and forums. It’s a great way to get an overview of where your organization was mentioned, and even has some analytics tools to help you parse through it all and see where and how folks are talking about you.

Mentions over time

Mentions Over Time

Hard drive stats word cloud

Hard Drive Stats Word Cloud

Thoughts on Twitter

More than any other social media platform, Twitter has become the place where people go when they have an issue, need information, or just want to ask a question. Being responsive and making sure each person is responded to builds a rapport with your followers and encourages a sense of community. Having a temporary unplanned outage? Make sure you tweet it so that folks know you’re on top of it and they aren’t feeling left out of the loop. Have a new feature to announce? Let the masses know so they can update to the latest and greatest version. Getting questions about your service? Respond quickly and with relevant information. Someone taking out their frustration on you? Respond with compassion and empathy; make sure they understand that you have heard their feedback and that it’s understood, even if there is nothing you can do.

This leads to a more cohesive community where no one feels left out and everyone feels like they’re a part of the group. If someone is having a bad day and takes it out on you, that’s the perfect time to try and bring them in for a soft landing. Very few people ever reach out to Customer Support because they’re having the best day ever. For the customer where something has gone wrong, the way that you treat them dictates how the community at large will view your brand and company. Being empathetic does not have any downsides in these cases and builds trust over time.

Insight #2

One of the reasons I use multiple services to track mentions is to make sure that people don’t fall through the cracks. It’s important that folks are responded to when they write us with a question or frustration. Even if the interaction with us is not positive, the goal is to make sure everyone feels heard. That helps establish the positive brand and good vibes I am trying to cultivate and results in brand amplification and customer lead recommendations.

Where Social Fits In At Backblaze

Venture capital backed companies tend to be built around hypergrowth, spending money to acquire customers while honing the product and finding their niche. In the almost thirteen years Backblaze has been around, we’ve raised less than $3M. We’re funded by our own operations; this is known as being a bootstrapped company. Being bootstrapped brings with it a lot of benefits, like the freedom to make our own decisions, but it does also mean we can’t spend a lot of money buying Facebook ads, much less buying radio and TV time. So we have to be creative with how we attract people and keep them happy once we earn their business. We want the Backblaze brand to reflect our culture: transparent, empathetic, and efficient. Compared to our competition, we believe that offers a unique and different proposition to people deciding where they want to store their data. Not only that, but those beliefs also reflect who we are as people.

To attract customers and educate the masses without breaking the bank, we focused on writing interesting blog posts, open-sourcing technology, and being generally available to our customers. Being available is what we think truly sets us apart from the competition. For us, availability and being social means being good internet citizens, responding to hails from around the web, and joining in on conversations about the industry. That means going to where folks are talking about us and sharing some of our insights, like our hard drive stats posts. All of that, plus listening to our customers when making product decisions (like adding much-requested file sharing in version 5.0), helps move the product forward while bringing our customers along for the ride.

One of the tangible side benefits of being present on other platforms is that sometimes being involved in the conversation elsewhere can help stave off support tickets before they enter our system. We have a great Customer Support department and they handle all of our tickets in-house, so being able to head off potential issues on other platforms where currently and possibly future customers are chatting, not only helps us stay engaged in the conversation, but can also reduce the number of tickets coming in.

Insight #3

Community building is paramount. What is community? For me, it means any place where Backblaze is mentioned and anyone who engages with our company. Perception being reality, your company will be judged by its public actions. For better or worse, mindshare on the internet is driven by social interactions. Those interactions have to be genuine and not just lip-service with canned missives written by lawyers. While sometimes review is necessary, honest conversation in real-time is the standard I strive for. A company that does not invest in some form of social presence is actively not investing in its brand.

The Social Media Strategy

The strategy for our social efforts is simple: stay engaged. There’s a literal time component to this — we try to respond quickly, ideally within a few hours. Responding quickly is great, but if you’re responding fast with an automated message, you risk infuriating your customers. Ideally the response is quick and has relevant information. How do you maintain relevance? You do it by sending out useful, topical, or interesting tidbits that are industry related, and by participating in the comments wherever they come up. If you aren’t sure of the right answer or don’t have the necessary information at your fingertips, reply and let them know that you’ll work on getting them the right answer — then follow up.

Participation is one of our most important tactics. If you aren’t shy of wading into the comments, whether they be positive or negative, the community learns to ask questions and expects to receive answers. That, in turn, leads to trust, which is immeasurably important.

That’s especially true when something goes awry, for example when an Adobe issue ate some Backblaze files, or if you want to capitalize on an opportunity, as when we were able to move quickly and gain customers when CrashPlan’s exit of the consumer business was announced. Backblaze is in the data storage business, which makes it important to strike a balance between being funny, informative, and helpful. It’s difficult, but relentless participation is paramount for cultivating the kind of community you want your brand to have.

I am lucky enough to have the latitude to make decisions about what to explore and expand upon in public forums. That means that if something is happening in real-time, I don’t have to wait for an hour and a half to get approval about what I can and cannot say. This isn’t all improv (though I did do that in high school). We create this environment by having honest internal conversations that assume we are going to be discussing things with our customers. We are constantly calibrating and communicating so that when things happen in real-time we can react quickly. Do mistakes happen? Sometimes they do, but the benefits of being able to move quickly in an informed way have thus far outweighed any downsides we occasionally see.

Another thing to consider is that there are a lot of SaaS companies offering ready-made community platforms that allow you to manage your own online community. Platforms such as Vanilla, Chaordix, and CMNTY all help brands build and design their own online spaces. I’ve found that in general, these are great for large companies with huge brand awareness, and while Backblaze is large, I do not need such robust tools (not yet anyway). Instead I look for where people are discussing Backblaze already and join the conversations there. Places like Reddit, HackerNews, Twitter, Facebook, MangoLassi, SpiceWorks, and the comments sections of blogs or articles, are all places where Backblaze gets mentioned. Jumping into those conversations provides for a more natural flow and proves to folks that we really are paying attention, instead of letting the news come to us.

Insight #4

Think there isn’t much community in your B2B space or that joining one isn’t a big deal? If there is no community, or no one talking about your product, then there’s no market. If there’s no market, you should start polishing your resume. As long as your business has customers, there’s likely a community element as well. The trick is to find where they congregate, or if no such place exists, create one. Once established, work with your team to come up with guidelines for communication that will free you up should the need to move quickly arises.

Bringing It All Together: Tales of Disaster and Making Lemonade

We’ve had a lot of interesting experiences that have played out on social media over the years, and I’ll give two real-world examples of how being transparent, empathetic, and efficient has helped us navigate those events.

Adobe Deletes Data — Transparency and Legwork

In February of 2016, Adobe introduced a bug into their Creative Cloud program that deleted data. Specifically, files were deleted from the user’s root directory. Backblaze has a file, .bzvol, that we place on every one of our customers’ hard drives to keep track of the drive and whether it is plugged in or not. If we detect that the .bzvol file is no longer on the computer, we display a pop-up, asking folks to contact support. On the evening of February 10th, 2016, we started receiving a lot of tickets related to disappearing .bzvol files. Twitter also started to light up with people posting screenshots of the pop-up and asking what was going on. While all this happened, I was at a conference and was able to stay plugged into our internal conversations via Slack while we tried to figure out what was happening.

We caught a break the next morning. Our designer and co-founder, Casey, got hit with the error. Our lead Mac developer ran over to his desk, grabbed his logs, and started digging to see what the cause was. The only thing out of the ordinary was that Adobe Creative Cloud software had updated about an hour before he got hit with this error, so we were off to the races chasing things down.

Throughout this whole ordeal we had been tweeting updates and letting people know how they could fix the .bzvol issue. Once we realized that it was tied to Creative Cloud, we communicated that it was not a bug, but that Backblaze was simply a piece of software affected by the Adobe issue. Why was that? It turned out that the files Creative Cloud was deleting were the first files alphabetically found in the root directory. Because .bzvol is a hidden file that started with a “b,” odds were pretty good that if you had Backblaze installed, our .bzvol would be the file that was deleted and the resulting error would alert you of the problem. Backblaze was serving as a canary for a larger problem happening on machines everywhere.

Adobe warning tweet

Adobe Twitter Warnings

We also realized that it wasn’t just Backblaze customers experiencing this. Anyone using Creative Cloud would be affected. They just might not have known their files were deleted silently, since they wouldn’t get the .bzvol pop-up that our customers got.

As the week wore on, our social and support channels were blowing up. We started creating and tweeting videos of how the issue was manifesting and how people could avoid it, and we contacted Adobe with our videos, trying to explain to them what was going on.

Spike in mentions

Spike In Mentions

Mentions around Adobe

Mentions Around Adobe

What did we gain by being proactive and communicative? By February 14th, Adobe had both acknowledged and fixed the issue, releasing an update that wouldn’t silently delete data. We even got a mention in their FAQ on the subject. Plus, because we are lucky enough to have active followers who pay attention to what we post, they were gracious enough to help us spread the message more quickly. In the end we gained the appreciation of our customers and blog readers. While that’s not necessarily a monetary victory, it did reinforce the core strengths of our brand: transparency, empathy, and efficiency. The comments on that post confirmed that we did the right thing by being communicative.

Community response

Community Response On The Blog

CrashPlan’s Exits Consumer — A Strong Community Drives Your Business

On August 22nd, 2017, CrashPlan announced the end of their consumer backup service, shifting focus to their enterprise and SMB offerings. This was rather shocking news to us since CrashPlan was our largest competitor in the online backup space and one that we would send folks to when we weren’t a good fit for their particular need. The news broke early in the morning and our team started to scramble, brainstorming on how we could put ourselves in the best position possible for all of the CrashPlan refugees who were waking up to news of their online backup service going away.

To their credit, CrashPlan tried to communicate with their customers, giving them a couple different options, including a discounted first-year rate with a competitor. We had to move quickly if we wanted to win over some of the people who were going to start looking for alternatives. We did the only thing that made sense: we wrote a blog post.

Within hours of the announcement, we were able to write and publish our post, an Invitation for CrashPlan Customers. It reaffirmed our commitment to unlimited online backup for consumers (something that we see less and less of as tiered and complicated services sprout up) and listed the reasons we thought we’d be a good match for individuals who had used CrashPlan in the past. The initial post highlighted some of our favorite features, the reasons why people love us, and touched on the difference between syncing and backup. We felt that last part was important because we had seen a few tweets that morning of people stating “well at least I have Dropbox” and we wanted to make sure they were aware of the differences before making a possibly costly mistake.

CrashPlan blog post readership

CrashPlan Blog Post Readership

The blog post was widely circulated almost immediately, with over 60,000 people reading it in the first month (it still receives hundreds of visits per day). Once the blog post was rolling we got to work on the next phase of our plan. Phase two was putting the blog post front and center on our computer backup website, creating FAQs based on common questions we were seeing, and writing a guide on how to migrate data from CrashPlan. We also added the ability for folks to create a reminder for themselves once their existing CrashPlan license was started expiring, with instructions on migrating.

While phase two was proceeding, I was hard at work on the social. It was my job to stoke the fire while being respectful. That meant not piling on and being a good community steward by sharing the CrashPlan post and our Version 5.0 release notes (fortuitously released a few weeks prior), which touted faster backup speeds and file sharing. While Twitter was heating up, I was also actively involved in threads on HackerNews and Reddit. Backblaze’s CTO Brian Wilson and I were hard at work making sure that anyone who had questions on the web was responded to.

It’s important to be gracious to your competitors. There’s always someone on the other end of the screen and it was paramount to remember that while we were having a good day, others were having a bad day. To that end, I sent an edible arrangement that day to CrashPlan’s support team, because I knew what it felt like to be having a horrible day in the court of public opinion. Again, we’re all on the same team: get people’s data backed up. I was later told that the gesture was greatly appreciated.

The following are some examples of my Twitter efforts trying to attract customers, having fun, but also being gracious:

What was the benefit? We’ve seen almost a 2x increase in the number of sign-ups that we get for our computer backup service. Not only that, but it has also helped drive almost 50% annual revenue growth this year.

In time sensitive situations, being agile, efficient, and having the ability to execute surgically on a series of tasks can have tremendous impact on the overall business. It’s all about catching the wave at the right time. I’m lucky enough to have the latitude to make decisions about how best to approach things when in the thick of it. That lets me move quickly without having to go up the chain and wait a long time for approvals, which helps the conversation flow more naturally and allows me to stay engaged.

Insight #5

Here’s some advice on competition — it’s important not to pile on. When competitors are having a bad day, attempting to pour gasoline on their fire is considered distasteful and will likely not be taken well by your community. It’s one thing to see and interact with people mentioning or asking questions about you in the comments. It’s entirely different to rub a competitor’s nose in the dirt. Being a jerk online is not only mean but reflects poorly on a company’s brand. Remember that on the other end of every computer is a person who has to deal with their own corporate and social fallout. Treat them the way you’d want to be treated in a crisis situation. We’re all in this together.

Fin

Congratulations on making it to the end! I hope this post was not just verbose, but also helpful. Do you have any social media tips or tricks that have helped you grow your brand? Have questions about our approach? Let’s chat below in the comments!

The post Making Lemonade: The Importance of Social Media and Community appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Wanted: Inside Sales Account Executive

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/wanted-inside-sales-account-executive/

Job Description
Backblaze is looking for an Inside Sales Account Executive to join our Backblaze for Business sales team. This is an important role that will help determine the growth path of the company. Finding exceptional individuals who love working in a dynamic and challenging environment is our highest priority. We are searching for people who have successfully met and exceeded sales goals and would prefer to hire someone who has worked at a B2B Software as a Service or Data Protection company.

The History of Backblaze from our CEO
In 2007, after a friend’s computer crash caused her some suffering, we realized that with every photo, video, song, and document going digital, everyone would eventually lose all of their information. Five of us quit our jobs to start a company with the goal of making it easy for people to backup their data.

Like many startups, for a while we worked out of a co-founder’s one-bedroom apartment. Unlike most startups, we made an explicit agreement not to raise funding during the first year. We would then touch base every six months and decide whether to raise or not. We wanted to focus on building the company and the product, not on pitching and slide decks. And critically, we wanted to build a culture that understood money comes from customers, not the magical VC giving tree. Over the course of 5 years we built a profitable, multi-million dollar revenue business — and only then did we raise a VC round.

10 Years Later We Are a Growing & Thriving Company with

  • A brand millions recognize for openness, ease-of-use, and affordability.
  • A computer backup service that stores over 700 petabytes of data, has recovered over 35 billion files for hundreds of thousands of paying customers — most of whom self-identify as being the people that find and recommend technology products to their friends.
  • A growing, profitable and cash-flow positive company.
  • And last, but most definitely not least: a great sales team.

The Ideal Account Executive Candidate will

  • Have extensive B2B sales experience with a primary focus on companies <500 employees with strong brand recognition and demand generation activities.
  • Give excellent product demonstrations that use the customer’s pain points and needs to create a uniquely customized value proposition.
  • Have a track record of managing inbound interest while generating new pipeline through prospecting and referrals.
  • Knowing how to sell on value instead of relying on discounting.

Responsibilities

  • Manage the entire SaaS sales cycle from qualification to successful trial completion.
  • Focus primarily on qualifying and closing inbound leads while also self-generating sales pipeline with accounts that match our Ideal Customer Profile.
  • Deliver a compelling and customer-centric product demonstration.
  • Keep opportunities updated with accurate next steps to improve monthly forecast accuracy.
  • Provide input to product and marketing teams from conversations with customers and prospects.
  • Manage contract T’s & C’s negotiations during the sales process.
  • Regularly meet and exceed monthly quota targets after onboarding and ramp period.
  • Approach all deals with a customer-first “ready to help” mentality.
  • Work cross-functionally with different organizations such as Sales, Marketing, Customer Success, Support, Product Development, and Engineering.

Requirements

  • Articulate and execute a detailed plan for exceeding monthly sales targets.
  • 1-3 years of sales experience (in a closing role), preferably in SaaS platform software.
  • Ability to speak to executive-level decision-makers and ask intelligent questions about their business challenges and professional goals.
  • Track record of success by exceeding quota on a regular basis.
  • History of building new net business through prospecting and referrals.
  • Great communicator with the ability to convey authenticity through active listening.
  • Give persuasive and engaging product demonstrations.
  • Highly organized and able to balance dozens of accounts.
  • Adaptability to thrive in times of ambiguity but willing to raise your hand and ask for help when necessary.
  • Strong personal ethics with a competitive mindset. You want to earn a spot at the top of the leaderboard through hard work and continuous effort.
  • You have the desire and willingness to learn new job skills through independent study.
  • Knowledge of modern sales software including (but not limited to) Salesforce, Outreach, DiscoverOrg, Cirrus Insights, and UberConference.

This position is an experienced sales role with little to no travel requirements. Must be able to report into our San Mateo office daily.

Desirables

  • Understanding of modern sales process for SaaS.
  • Cloud backup solution landscape familiarity.
  • File backup terminology, use cases, and common pain points.
  • Creative and/or highly interpersonal background.
  • Achieving 90% of sales targets within 90 days of hire.

Benefits

  • Competitive healthcare plans
  • Competitive compensation and 401k
  • All employees receive option grants
  • Unlimited vacation days
  • Strong coffee
  • Fully stocked micro kitchen
  • Catered breakfast and lunches
  • Awesome people who work on awesome projects
  • New parent childcare bonus
  • Normal work hours
  • Get to bring your pets into the office
  • San Mateo Office — located near Caltrain and Highways 101 & 280

If this all sounds like you:

  1. Send an email to jobscontact@backblaze.com with the position in the subject line.
  2. Tell us a bit about your work history.
  3. Include your resume.

The post Wanted: Inside Sales Account Executive appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Welcome Cheryl — Data Center Tech

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/welcome-cheryl-data-center-tech/

Our data center team continues to grow at a rapid pace as we’re now storing way over 600 petabytes of data! The latest addition to the team is Cheryl, who joins our team as a datacenter technician! Lets learn a bit more about Cheryl, shall we?

What is your Backblaze title?
Data Center Technician.

Where are you originally from?
I am originally from San Jose, CA.

What attracted you to Backblaze?
I am extremely inspired by the history of how Backblaze came to be, how far we have come and what it is today. I feel honored to be a part of something so special and rare.

What do you expect to learn while being at Backblaze?
My desire is to expand my current Linux vocabulary while increasing my technical skills in the environment.

Where else have you worked?
I have a pretty eclectic working career. I started out in tech in the Silicon Valley prior and up to the “bubble burst” — providing support for Merrill Lynch, Hotmail, and Passport. During this time, I worked as a part-time sports model for Umbrella Girls USA, following AMA and Nascar. I then became a full-time mom and designed costumes for Umbrella Girls USA. A few years down the road, I re-entered the work force as a restaurant manager working for Stephanie Pearl at Marche, Tom Gallo at Galletto Ristorante, then Black Bear Diner here in Sacramento.

Where did you go to school?
I studied business at Sierra College and Computer Science/HIM through DeVry University.

What’s your dream job?
My dream job is in an environment where I can learn something new every day and be a part of a team working towards a common goal (on the beach).

Favorite place you’ve traveled?
My favorite place I have visited (so far) is Barbados. The people and culture are warm, generous, purposeful and progressive. All of my favorite qualities in one small island!

Favorite hobby?
My favorite hobby is spending time outdoors. I especially love backpacking and trail running.

Of what achievement are you most proud?
Being a mom is the greatest achievements I am most proud of and is the most important “hat” I wear.

Star Trek or Star Wars?
Star Trek.

Coke or Pepsi?
Coke.

Favorite food?
Mexican.

Why do you like certain things?
Simply, I like certain things either because my senses tell me something may be good or I have just been exposed to it long enough.

Anything else you’d like to tell us?
I absolutely love life and all of the experiences that come with it. Every day I have something to learn as well as something to teach.

You’ll definitely learn a lot about Linux while on the data center team! Welcome aboard!

The post Welcome Cheryl — Data Center Tech appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Wanted: Paralegal and Compliance Analyst

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/wanted-paralegal-and-compliance-analyst/

Want to work at a company that helps customers in 156 countries around the world protect the memories they hold dear — a company that stores over 500 petabytes of customers’ photos, music, documents, and work files in a purpose-built cloud storage system?

Here’s your chance. Backblaze is looking for a Paralegal and Compliance Analyst!

Company Description:
Founded in 2007, Backblaze started with a mission to make backup software elegant and provide complete peace of mind. Over the course of almost a decade, we have become a pioneer in robust, scalable low cost cloud backup. Recently, we launched B2 — robust and reliable object storage at just $0.005/gb/mo. Part of our differentiation is being able to offer the lowest price of any of the big players while still being profitable.

We’ve managed to nurture a team oriented culture with amazingly low turnover. We value our people and their families. Don’t forget to check out our “About Us” page to learn more about the people and some of our perks.

We have built a profitable, high growth business. While we love our investors, we have maintained control over the business. That means our corporate goals are simple: grow sustainably and profitably.

Some Backblaze Perks:

  • Competitive healthcare plans
  • Competitive compensation and 401k
  • All employees receive option grants
  • Unlimited vacation days
  • Strong coffee
  • Fully stocked micro kitchen
  • Catered breakfast and lunches
  • Awesome people who work on awesome projects
  • New parent childcare bonus
  • Normal work hours
  • Get to bring your pets into the office
  • San Mateo Office — located near Caltrain and Highways 101 & 280

Paralegal and Compliance Analyst Responsibilities:

  • Collaborate and develop relationships with internal business teams and third parties to draft a variety of corporate, contract and operational matters, obtaining approvals and signatures, and maintaining electronic and physical files
  • Serve as the primary representative for all privacy inquiries, audits and on-going efforts
  • Lead the continuous improvement of the privacy compliance program and risk assessment process, including maintenance of written policies and procedures
  • Work across organizational teams to ensure that privacy processes are fully understood and implemented, including remediation of instances of noncompliance
  • Draft legal documents for corporate governance including Board meeting minutes, corporate resolutions and consents, corporate entity management, and equity matters
  • Assist in gathering information and documents in response to legal cases, subpoenas, and administrative agency requests
  • Manage tools for documenting and tracking compliance with data privacy obligations
  • Coordinate annual review of privacy-related certifications
  • Assist with the management of external counsel, track invoices for compliance with policies and budget

Qualifications:

  • Minimum of 3 – 5 years of paralegal experience, with experience in both law firm and/or in-house technology company environments
  • Bachelor’s degree from a 4-year university or equivalent
  • Familiarity with regulations and certifications like GDPR, SOC II, HIPPA, PCI, etc.
  • Experience with data analytics software and tools such as SQL, Tableau, Excel, Google Sheets
  • Must be organized and have excellent written and oral communication skills
  • Must be proactive, flexible, self-starter, and a good team player

If this all sounds like you:

  1. Send an email to jobscontact@backblaze.com with the position in the subject line.
  2. Tell us a bit about your work history.
  3. Include your resume.

The post Wanted: Paralegal and Compliance Analyst appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Backblaze Cloud Backup Release 5.4

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/backblaze-cloud-backup-release-5-4/

New Backblaze Release

We’re releasing an update today for Backblaze Cloud Backup, version 5.4! This is a smaller release, but it does provide some bug fixes and adds in some building blocks for future releases.

What’s New:

  • Windows
  • Mac
    • Support for Dark Mode
    • Mojave Advanced Privacy Protections Support
    • Mojave Installation Flow
    • Minor bug fixes

Release Version Number:
Mac — 5.4.0
PC — 5.4.0

Availability:
October 4th, 2018

Cost:
Free for Backblaze Cloud Backup consumer and business customers and active trial users.

Upgrade Methods:

  • Immediately when performing a “Check for Updates” (right-click on the Backblaze icon and then select “Check for Updates”).
  • Immediately as a download from: https://secure.backblaze.com/update.htm.
  • Immediately as the default download from: www.backblaze.com.
  • Auto-update will begin soon.

The post Backblaze Cloud Backup Release 5.4 appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Backblaze and macOS 10.14 Mojave

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/mojave-permissions/

Last week, Apple released macOS 10.14 “Mojave.” Many Backblaze users experienced a less-than-ideal update experience. We wanted to take a moment to summarize what happened, how to fix the issue, and what we’re doing to avoid this in the future.

If you’re updating or have updated to Mojave, please make sure you are running the latest version of Backblaze and once Mojave is installed enable Full Disk Access by following these steps: Mojave FAQ.

What Happened

With macOS 10.14, Apple released a new privacy flow. These privacy protections closely mirror how apps behave on iOS devices. Specifically, the user is asked for permission when an app needs access to certain features or functions (like using the camera or accessing contacts).

Backblaze is designed around ease of use and having a comprehensive backup, and as a result backs up all user data by default. Because of this, we are in a unique position where we need access to all computer files in order to back them up. This was previously possible with root access but is no longer the case with Mojave as the user needs to explicitly grant Full Disk Access to Backblaze in order for us to back up your photos, calendar, contacts, Safari bookmarks, etc.

As a result of the privacy changes Backblaze users updating to Mojave saw their “files selected for backup” numbers decrease as directories were essentially silently excluded from backup. The solution was relatively simple: grant Backblaze’s bzserv full disk access. However, we quickly realized this was a cumbersome process because you had to unpack the Backblaze package, and so we have rewritten the app to be more streamlined. The bad news is that this means that people who had already granted Full Disk Access will need to do so again using the new method detailed above. The good news is that this is now an easier process.

Since Mojave released, we have been letting users know the actions needed to enable permissions. We have also updated our app to provide convenient how-to instructions. When you upgrade to our new app, three windows will open on your machine:

  1. The Applications folder with the Backblaze app
  2. The Security & Privacy settings pane where you grant permissions
  3. An animated GIF showing you exactly what to do

Going Forward

While we test our service on beta OS releases for both Mac & Windows, the edge-cases in the final Mojave release and the way that Backblaze interacts with those edge cases meant that this time we had to play catch-up. We deeply apologize for any inconvenience to our customers.

We’re also currently reviewing the circumstances of this launch to see what we can do differently next time to make sure the next macOS releases are as smooth as the previous ones!

Again, we are sorry for any hassle you have experienced related to the interaction between our previous application and the new Mojave system. And thank you for your patience as we sorted things out.

If You Have Updated to Mojave Or Are Planning To Do So

  1. Make sure that you are running the latest Backblaze client (latest version found here).
  2. Make sure that Backblaze has Full Disk Access as described in the Mojave FAQ.
  3. Make sure your other programs have not been adversely affected by the update.

The post Backblaze and macOS 10.14 Mojave appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Help Wanted: Data Center Technician

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/help-wanted-data-center-technician/

Wanted

Want to work at a company that helps customers in 156 countries around the world protect the memories they hold dear — a company that stores over 500 petabytes of customers’ photos, music, documents, and work files in a purpose-built cloud storage system?

Here’s your chance. Backblaze is looking for a Data Center Technician!

Company Description:
Founded in 2007, Backblaze started with a mission to make backup software elegant and provide complete peace of mind. Over the course of almost a decade, we have become a pioneer in robust, scalable low cost cloud backup. Recently, we launched B2, robust and reliable object storage, at just $0.005/gb/mo. Part of our differentiation is being able to offer the lowest price of any of the big players while still being profitable.

We’ve managed to nurture a team-oriented culture with amazingly low turnover. We value our people and their families. Don’t forget to check out our “About Us” page to learn more about the people and some of our perks.

We have built a profitable, high growth business. While we love our investors, we have maintained control over the business. That means our corporate goals are simple: grow sustainably and profitably.

Some Backblaze Perks:

  • Competitive healthcare plans
  • Competitive compensation and 401k
  • All employees receive option grants
  • Unlimited vacation days
  • Strong coffee
  • Fully stocked micro kitchen
  • Catered lunches
  • Awesome people who work on awesome projects
  • New parent childcare bonus
  • Normal work hours

Want to know what you’ll be doing?

  • Work as Backblaze’s physical presence in Sacramento area datacenter(s)
  • Help maintain physical infrastructure including racking equipment, replacing hard drives and other system components
  • Repair and troubleshoot defective equipment with minimal supervision
  • Support datacenter’s 24×7 staff to install new equipment, handle after hours emergencies, and other tasks
  • Help manage onsite inventory of hard drives, cables, rails, and other spare parts
  • RMA defective components
  • Set up, test and activate new equipment via the Linux command line
  • Help train new datacenter technicians as needed
  • Help with projects to install new systems and services as time allows
  • Follow and improve data center best practices and documentation
  • Maintain a clean and well organized work environment
  • On-call responsibilities require being within an hour of the SunGard’s Rancho Cordova/Roseville facility and occasional trips onsite 24×7 to resolve issues that can’t be handled remotely
  • Work days may include Saturday and/or Sunday (e.g. working Tuesday – Saturday)

Requirements

  • Excellent communication, time management, problem solving, and organizational skills
  • Ability to learn quickly
  • Ability to lift/move 50-75 lbs and work down near the floor on a daily basis
  • Position based near Sacramento, California and may require periodic visits to the corporate office in San Mateo
  • May require travel to other data centers to provide coverage and/or to assist with new site set-up.

If this all sounds like you:

  1. Send an email to jobscontact@backblaze.com with the position in the subject line.
  2. Tell us a bit about your work history.
  3. Include your resume.

The post Help Wanted: Data Center Technician appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Welcome Ebony — Data Center Tech

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/welcome-ebony-data-center-tech/

Ebony

One of the positions that we’re continually hiring for at Backblaze is for Data Center Technician. As we store more and more data, we need to make sure that all of our physical drives and servers are running smoothly, and that’s what the techs do on a daily basis. The newest addition to that team is Ebony! Lets learn a bit more about her shall we?

What is your Backblaze Title?
Data Center Tech.

Where are you originally from?
Berkeley, California.

What attracted you to Backblaze?
The Friendly People.

What do you expect to learn while being at Backblaze?
More about Linux.

Where else have you worked?
Sungard.

Where did you go to school?
Berkeley High.

What’s your dream job?
Football player.

Favorite place you’ve traveled?
Vegas.

Favorite hobby?
Reading.

Of what achievement are you most proud?
Bettering myself.

Star Trek or Star Wars?
Star Trek.

Coke or Pepsi?
Pepsi.

Favorite food?
Meatloaf.

Why do you like certain things?
Because certain things like me.

Anything else you’d like you’d like to tell us?
Keep up the good work.

We’ll be sure to keep up the good work and are stoked that you’ve joined our data center crew! Welcome aboard!

The post Welcome Ebony — Data Center Tech appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Welcome Athrea – Jr. Support Technician

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/welcome-athrea-jr-support-technician/

As Backblaze grows, one of the departments that grows right along with it is our support team! We do all of our support in-house from our headquarters and as we get more and more customers, the number of tickets that we receive daily also increases. To help us with those tickets, we have a brand new Jr. Support Tech! Athrea! Lets learn a bit more about her shall we?

What is your Backblaze Title?
Jr. Support Technician

Where are you originally from?
Born in the Philippines, but was raised here in San Francisco.

What attracted you to Backblaze?
The environment and the mission. While I was on site for my interview I was informed of the company’s mission and core values. I was amazed by Backblaze’s values and its aim.

What do you expect to learn while being at Backblaze?
I love to learn and anything they are willing to teach me, I would be grateful to take part in.

Where else have you worked?
In many many different places. I’ve dabbled in many different jobs. From bookstores to huge companies. I wanted to find a place I could feel comfortable at.

Favorite place you’ve traveled?
I love to travel, but so far my favorite place is an island in the Philippines called Palawan. It was absolutely beautiful. There are a few islands in Palawan that I could visit, but I went to Puerto Princesa and went to the Underground River.

Favorite hobby?
Reading, games, taking pictures, writing, watching movies and TV, exploring. I am currently still trying to finish Final Fantasy XV and Zelda Breath of the Wild. I love taking pictures. It’s been a hobby of mine since I was in high school. My cousin and I love to explore San Francisco, we love to drive around and then park the car. We’d walk around trying to discover little things about SF.

Of what achievement are you most proud?
Achieving where I said I’d be at three years ago. Three years ago, I said to myself that I would go back to school and be in the industry that I wanted to be in.

Star Trek or Star Wars?
Both? I can’t decide. I grew up watching Star Trek with my grams and Star Wars with my cousins. They both mean something to me.

Coke or Pepsi?
Coke. I’m sorry Pepsi, but Coke.

Black iced tea?
Yes, please. I love Black tea. White tea is lovely too.

Favorite food?
Anything chicken, veggies, or seafood. I don’t eat red meat. I don’t really eat pork either, but bacon is just too hard to resist sometimes.

Why do you like certain things?
Too much knowledge. When I learn something new about something and I find it to be interesting, I would dive into it headfirst. I love doing research and discovering new things.

Anything else you’d like you’d like to tell us?
I’m excited to join the team.

We’re excited to have you on the team! Welcome aboard!

The post Welcome Athrea – Jr. Support Technician appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Welcome Cameron — Senior DevOps Engineer

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/welcome-cameron-senior-devops-engineer/

Backblaze continues to grow and our operations team is growing right along with it. The latest person to join our operations team is Cameron, our Senior DevOps Engineer. Lets learn a bit more about Cameron shall we?

What is your Backblaze Title?
Senior DevOps Engineer.

Where are you originally from?
Hayward, CA.

What attracted your to Backblaze?
The amazing coworkers and environment.

What do you expect to learn while being at Backblaze?
A lot about large scale physical infrastructure.

Where else have you worked?
Redbeacon and Datanyze.

Where did you go to school?
Sonoma State.

What’s your dream job?
This one! Or maybe a pilot or race car driver.

Favorite place you’ve traveled?
London.

Favorite hobby?
UAVs, cooking, driving, and gaming.

Of what achievement are you most proud?
I am a nationally listed high performance driving instructor.

Star Trek or Star Wars?
Both!

Coke or Pepsi?
Coke.

Favorite Food?
Pizza.

Why do you like certain things?
I like solving complex problems, almost more than actually using the solution.

Anything else you’d like to tell us?
I love the Grateful Dead and go to or listen live online to around 50 shows per year.

Welcome aboard Cameron!

The post Welcome Cameron — Senior DevOps Engineer appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Wanted: DevOps Business Analyst

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/wanted-devops-business-analyst/

As a DevOps Business Analyst, you will apply your expertise in data analytics to inform decision making, help optimize business growth, and improve the efficiency of Backblaze’s data center operations. A successful candidate must be able to develop tools and reports that provide insight and highlight potential issues. The tools developed should be easy to use, and reports should be clear, visual, on demand, interactive, and with a high level of detail.

Responsibilities:

  • Produce forecasts and analysis to provide insight into capacity planning, resource utilization, operational efficiency, SLA compliance, and risk management.
  • Analyze operational costs normalized to business metrics like storage capacity ($/GB), power provided ($/kW), etc.
  • Present and explain statistical/forecasting analyses visually to technical and non-technical audiences.
  • Bring together Backblaze internal information and market data to help leaders understand operational related growth issues.
  • Demonstrate judgment and discretion when dealing with sensitive information.

Sample projects:

  • Forecast capital equipment needs for servers and storage based on sales forecast.
  • Model total cost of ownership (TCO) for data centers including direct costs like power and rent, as well as indirect costs such as taxes.
  • Forecast future storage requirements, data center power and network bandwidth by data center and region.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • BS or BA in a quantitative field (e. g., Finance, Economics, Math, Operations Research, Statistics, Data Science, Management Science, Social Sciences, etc.).
  • Experience with analytic tools (spreadsheets, etc.).
  • 4+ years experience in an analytical role, ideally in an environment requiring supply chain management (e.g. manufacturing, high growth data centers, etc.).
  • Experience presenting to leadership and working collaboratively with other cross-functional partners.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience with SQL and data visualization software, such as Tableau.
  • Experience in forecasting methods and techniques such as trend analysis, longitudinal analysis, clustering, categorical analysis, business simulations, etc.
  • MBA or Masters degree in a quantitative field.

Interested in Joining Our Team?
If this sounds like you, follow these steps:

  1. Send an email to jobscontact@backblaze.com with the position in the subject line.
  2. Include your resume and cover letter.
  3. Tell us a bit about your experience.

Backblaze is an Equal Opportunity Employer.

The post Wanted: DevOps Business Analyst appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Help Wanted: Senior Staff Accountant

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/help-wanted-senior-staff-accountant/

Want to work at a company that helps customers in 156 countries around the world protect the memories they hold dear? A company that stores over 500 petabytes of customers’ photos, music, documents and work files in a purpose-built cloud storage system?

Well here’s your chance. Backblaze is looking for a Senior Staff Accountant!

Company Description:
Founded in 2007, Backblaze started with a mission to make backup software elegant and provide complete peace of mind. Over the course of almost a decade, we have become a pioneer in robust, scalable low cost cloud backup. Recently, we launched B2 — robust and reliable object storage at just $0.005/gb/mo. Part of our differentiation is being able to offer the lowest price of any of the big players while still being profitable.

We’ve managed to nurture a team oriented culture with amazingly low turnover. We value our people and their families. Don’t forget to check out our “About Us” page to learn more about the people and some of our perks.

We have built a profitable, high growth business. While we love our investors, we have maintained control over the business. That means our corporate goals are simple — grow sustainably and profitably.

Some Backblaze Perks:

  • Competitive healthcare plans
  • Competitive compensation and 401k
  • All employees receive option grants
  • Unlimited vacation days
  • Strong coffee
  • Fully stocked micro kitchen
  • Catered breakfast and lunches
  • Awesome people who work on awesome projects
  • New parent childcare bonus
  • Normal work hours
  • Get to bring your pets into the office
  • San Mateo Office — located near Caltrain and Highways 101 & 280

Senior Staff Accountant Responsibilities:

  • Accurately prepare complex accruals, journal entries and balance sheet reconciliations as part of the monthly, quarterly and annual close process.
  • Ability to research and apply fundamental accounting theories and concepts under US GAAP.
  • Maintain fixed asset ledger, which includes interacting with equipment leasing companies, facilitating leasing documentation and interactions with various departments.
  • Conduct periodic physical inventory counts working with Operations.
  • Prepare schedules and documentation for external audits, internal control audits and various other regulatory audits.
  • Identify and implement process improvements to help reduce time to close, improve upon accuracy of underlying accounting records and enhance internal controls.
  • Perform other duties and special projects as assigned.

Qualifications:

  • Bachelor Degree in Accounting or Finance; CPA highly preferred.
  • 5+ years relevant accounting experience.
  • Big 4 experience is a plus.
  • Knowledge of inventory and cycle counting preferred.
  • Prior experience working with Quickbooks, Excel, Word experience desired.
  • Positive work ethic, strong analytical and organizational skills with a high level of attention to detail.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills and ability to work effectively across functional areas in a collaborative environment.
  • Demonstrated ability to thrive in a dynamic and fast-paced environment.

If this all sounds like you:

  1. Send an email to jobscontact@backblaze.com with the position in the subject line.
  2. Tell us a bit about your work history.
  3. Include your resume.

The post Help Wanted: Senior Staff Accountant appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Access Issues on Mobile Apps

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/access-issues-on-mobile-apps/

Some users may experience access issues on our mobile apps until around September 20, 2018. We are sorry for any trouble this may cause and recommend using our mobile website to view and restore files in the meantime.

What’s Happening:
As part of a large infrastructure project, we are working on the underlying code in our mobile apps. However, as we near the end of the project, some customers may experience access issues until late September. This infrastructure project lays the groundwork that will support continued development of our mobile apps (and we just hired more folks to help with that!).

Who’s Affected:
Most users should not experience any issues, but if you do find yourself unable to log in, this may be why. We expect the work to be completed on or around September 20, 2018.

Accessing Files via The Mobile Web:
For users wanting to access their Backblaze account on their phones, the mobile browser is still a good option. To restore a file from the mobile web, go to www.backblaze.com from your mobile browser of choice, log in, and then select the file you wish to download in the View/Restore files tab. In last year’s update we also provided the ability to download single files in just one click.

Again, we apologize for any inconvenience and will get mobile apps back up and running soon!

The post Access Issues on Mobile Apps appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Welcome Skip — Director of Product Marketing, B2 Media and Entertainment

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/welcome-skip-director-of-product-marketing-b2-media-and-entertainment/

Skip

Backblaze continues to grow, and B2 Cloud Storage is growing rapidly right along with it. One area where B2 excels is offering simple, low-cost storage for media and entertainment companies. To help foster those relationships, we’ve brought on Skip to help steward the M&E side of B2 Cloud Storage. Lets learn a bit more about Skip shall we?

What is your Backblaze Title?
Director of Product Marketing, B2 Media and Entertainment.

Where are you originally from?
I was born in San Diego, and raised in both San Diego North County and the Bay Area.

What attracted your to Backblaze?
I’ve always admired Backblaze — the people, the approach to growing a business, the openness and transparency. I’ve always looked for ways to work with the company while at previous companies, and am so excited to join.

What do you expect to learn while being at Backblaze?
Everything! By which I mean everything about Backblaze, and what a truly open, inquisitive, approach that focuses on what the customer wants to accomplish in media and entertainment will lead to, and how to deliver incredible new ways for our customers’ storytelling and production in the modern age.

Where else have you worked?
At Apple I was a Technology Evangelist for their media and entertainment ecosystem, including Final Cut Pro, Xsan, Xserve and Xserve RAID. Before that I drove Alain Pinel’s Marketing and Technology using NeXT workstations! Since Apple I’ve worked at large companies like Quantum, and small M+E storage startups.

Where did you go to school?
I graduated from Berkeley High, then San Jose State. The Marine Corps sent me to a ton of schools, too.

What’s your dream job?
A place where ideas and values matter, smart, customer-focused and unconventional ‘reach for something truly great’ wins over rote, ‘turn-the-crank’ and ‘good-enough’.

Favorite place you’ve traveled?
Devon Island — the largest uninhabited island on earth, only a few hundred miles from the North Pole.

Favorite Hobby?
Lately it’s been cooking! But writing, and personal software projects, usually.

Of what achievement are you most proud?
Leading the Virginia Tech team to build the worlds fastest supercomputer in Education on a terrifyingly short timeline.

Star Trek or Star Wars?
Star Trek. I’ve always been drawn to the ‘let’s explore’ ethos and mission.

Coke or Pepsi?
Coca-Cola BlaK! It was crazy good — coffee infused Coke!

Favorite Food?
Margherita pizza.

Why do you like certain things?
I’m drawn to learning how things work. As a kid I took everything apart to see how it worked. I’ve learned that the one thing you’re most afraid of is exactly what you should explore next.

Anything else you’d like to tell us?
I’ve been based in the Hill Country outside of Austin Texas for several years, and can’t wait to home-base in the Bay Area again.

Welcome aboard Skip. While we can’t really keep Coca-Cola BlaK in stock, we will certainly have some strong coffee and Coke Classic around!

The post Welcome Skip — Director of Product Marketing, B2 Media and Entertainment appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Welcome Vanna — Office Administrator

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/welcome-vanna-office-administrator/

Backblaze is growing quickly and we need good folks to help keep this well-oiled machine well oiled! The role of an office administrator is one of the most important in the company. If things start falling apart everyone feels it, and we needed a new office administrator to take over the reins after our previous office admin, JC, joined another department. Vanna joined us recently and is already instrumental in keeping the wheels on this Backblaze bus. Let’s learn a bit more about Vanna shall we?

What is your Backblaze Title?
Office Administrator.

Where are you originally from?
Tracy, California.

What attracted you to Backblaze?
The product and service that Backblaze provides. Being a non tech-saavy person, I really wanted to learn more about what cloud storage is and how I could use it to protect all the important files that I have.

What do you expect to learn while being at Backblaze?
I expect to learn a lot about our product and what it’s like to work in the tech industry. This will be a whole new field for me so I am really excited to be in a new environment and to be a part of a team that is incredibly dedicated to the service we provide.

Where else have you worked?
I’ve worked at two different preschools, Target and even Starbucks!

What’s your dream job?
My dream job would be to travel around the world and experience new places and great food. To be able to do that and get paid for it would be ideal. 😉

Where did you go to school?
UC Santa Barbara. Go Gauchos!

Favorite place you’ve traveled?
Definitely New Orleans. The culture, food, and people were absolutely intriguing and fun to learn about. It was amazing to be in such a lively city filled with delicious food!

Favorite Hobby?
Some of my favorite hobbies are doing outdoors activities whether it be snowboarding, hiking, biking, rock climbing, or even walking my dogs. I enjoy staying active and being outside. I am also that person who could lie on her couch all day and watch television. 🙂

Star Trek or Star Wars?
Star Wars!

Coke or Pepsi?
Oh, Coke for sure!

Favorite Food?
Sushi!! I can’t get enough of it.

Of what achievement are you most proud?
One achievement that I am proud of is graduating college. Being the first generation in America, my immigrant grandparents and parents worked really hard to provide me with the opportunity to go to college. So being able to bring home a degree after years of education made me very proud of myself.

Why do you like certain things?
I like certain things because those things typically make me happy. It could be food; it could be places to go; and it could be the people I’m around, but either way they tend to bring happiness into my life.

Anything else you’d like to tell us?
I have an amazingly supportive family and two shiba inu dogs named Hiro and Luna who tend to keep me sane or insane — it really depends on the day. 🙂

When we were interviewing Vanna we joked that running the Backblaze office would be very similar to her previous job of working in a preschool. Luckily that didn’t frighten her off. Welcome aboard Vanna!

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What’s New In B2: Application Keys + Java SDK

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/b2-application-keys/

B2 Application Keys

It’s been a few months since our last “What’s New In B2” blog post, so we wanted to highlight some goings on and also introduce a new B2 feature!

Reintroducing: Java SDK + Compute Partnerships

We wanted to highlight the official Backblaze B2 Java SDK which can be found in our GitHub repo. The official Java SDK came out almost a year ago, but we’ve been steadily updating it since then with help from the community.

We’ve also announced some Compute Partnerships which give folks all the benefits of Backblaze B2’s low-cost cloud storage with the computing capabilities of Packet and ServerCentral. Backblaze B2 Cloud storage has directly connected to the compute providers, which offers customers low latency and free data transfers with B2 Cloud Storage.

Application Keys

Application keys give developers more control over who can do what and for how long with their B2 data. We’ve had the B2 application key documentation out for a while, and we’re ready to take off the “coming soon” tag.

row of keys

What are Application Keys?

In B2, the main application key has root access to everything and essentially controls every single operation that can be done inside B2. With the introduction of additional application keys, developers now have more flexibility.

Application keys are scoped by three things: 1) what operations the key can do, 2) what path inside of B2 that key can take, and 3) for how long it has the ability to do so. For example you might use a “read-only” key that only has access to one B2 bucket. You’d use that read-only key in situations where you don’t actually need to write things to the bucket, only read or “display” them. Or, you might use a “write-only” key which can only write to a specific folder inside of a bucket. All of this leads to cleaner code with segmented operations, essentially acting as firewalls should something go awry.

Application keys dialog screenshot

Use Cases for Application Keys

One example of how you’d use an application key is for a standard backing up operation. If you’re backing up an SQL database, you do not need to use your root level key to do so. Simply creating a key that can only upload to a specified folder is good enough.

Another example is that of a developer building apps inside of a client. That developer would want to restrict access and limit privileges of each client to specific buckets and folders — usually based on the client that is doing the operation. Using more locked-down application keys limits the possibility that one rogue client can affect the entire system.

A final case could be a Managed Service Provider (MSP) who creates and uses different application key for each client. That way, neither the client nor the MSP can accidentally access the files of another client. In addition, an MSP could have multiple application keys for a given client that define different levels of data access for given groups or individuals within the client’s organization.

We Hope You Like It

Are you one of the people that’s been waiting for application key support? We’d love to hear your use cases so sound off in the comments below with what you’re working on!

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Wanted: Data Center Technician – Sacramento, CA

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/wanted-data-center-technician/

Want to work at a company that helps customers in 156 countries around the world protect the memories they hold dear? A company that stores over 500 petabytes of customers’ photos, music, documents and work files in a purpose-built cloud storage system?

Well here’s your chance. Backblaze is looking for a Data Center Technician!

Company Description:
Founded in 2007, Backblaze started with a mission to make backup software elegant and provide complete peace of mind. Over the course of almost a decade, we have become a pioneer in robust, scalable low cost cloud backup. Recently, we launched B2 – robust and reliable object storage at just $0.005/gb/mo. Part of our differentiation is being able to offer the lowest price of any of the big players while still being profitable.

We’ve managed to nurture a team oriented culture with amazingly low turnover. We value our people and their families. Don’t forget to check out our “About Us” page to learn more about the people and some of our perks.

We have built a profitable, high growth business. While we love our investors, we have maintained control over the business. That means our corporate goals are simple – grow sustainably and profitably.

Some Backblaze Perks:

  • Competitive healthcare plans
  • Competitive compensation and 401k
  • All employees receive Option grants
  • Unlimited vacation days
  • Strong coffee
  • Fully stocked Micro kitchen
  • Catered breakfast and lunches
  • Awesome people who work on awesome projects
  • New Parent Childcare bonus

Want to know what you’ll be doing?

  • Work as Backblaze’s physical presence in Sacramento area datacenter(s)
  • Help maintain physical infrastructure including racking equipment, replacing hard drives and other system components
  • Repair and troubleshoot defective equipment with minimal supervision
  • Support datacenter’s 24×7 staff to install new equipment, handle after hours emergencies and other tasks
  • Help manage onsite inventory of hard drives, cables, rails and other spare parts
  • RMA defective components
  • Setup, test and activate new equipment via the Linux command line
  • Help train new Datacenter Technicians as needed
  • Help with projects to install new systems and services as time allows
  • Follow and improve data center best practices and documentation
  • Maintain a clean and well organized work environment
  • On-call responsibilities require being within an hour of the SunGard’s Rancho Cordova/Roseville facility and occasional trips onsite 24×7 to resolve issues that can’t be handled remotely
  • Work days may include Saturday and/or Sunday (e.g. working Tuesday – Saturday)

Requirements:

  • Excellent communication, time management, problem solving and organizational skills.
  • Ability to learn quickly.
  • Ability to lift/move 50-75 lbs and work down near the floor on a daily basis.
  • Position based near Sacramento, California and may require periodic visits to the corporate office in San Mateo, CA.
  • May require travel to other Datacenters to provide coverage and/or to assist with new site set-up.

If this all sounds like you:

  • Send an email to [email protected] with the position in the subject line.
  • Tell us a bit about your work history.
  • Include your resume.

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Welcome Tina – Director of Engineering

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/welcome-tina-director-of-engineering/

Backblaze is getting bigger, and our engineering team is no exception! We’ve brought on a lot of great talent over the last few months, and we needed someone to make sure that team was running smoothly and efficiently. To make sure that our engineers have the tools they need and to keep all the projects moving forward we’ve brought on Tina, our Director of Engineering! Lets learn a bit more about Tina shall we?

What is your Backblaze Title?
Director of Engineering.

Where are you originally from?
Southern California.

What attracted your to Backblaze?
Product and people.

What do you expect to learn while being at Backblaze?
Cloud backup software.

Where else have you worked?
Salesforce.

Where did you go to school?
Cal Poly Pomona.

What’s your dream job?
Working with people who are passionate about building great software products and having fun while doing it.

Favorite place you’ve traveled?
Bora Bora.

Favorite Hobby?
Traveling and exploring new restaurants.

Of what achievement are you most proud?
Building great engineering teams.

Star Trek or Star Wars?
Both.

Coke or Pepsi?
Jasmine tea.

Favorite Food?
Fried chicken.

Anything else you’d like to tell us?
I’m a foodie, and a Yelp Elite. You can find my reviews on Yelp.

Tina joined us just a few weeks ago and has already had a positive impact, we are very excited to see where she leads the team going forward!

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Backblaze Cloud Backup Release 5.3 & EOL Announcements

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/backblaze-cloud-backup-release-5-3-eol-announcements/

Backblaze Cloud Backup Release 5.3

Backblaze announces an update to Backblaze Online Backup: Version 5.3! This is a smaller release, but does improve stability, security, and how Backblaze handles systems without a lot of RAM. This release also signals the beginning of the end of our support for a few older operating systems: Mac OS X 10.5, Mac OS X 10.6, Mac OS X 10.7, Windows XP, and Windows Vista.

What’s New in Release 5.3:

  • Better communication with the data centers when checking for connectivity
  • Increased security during communication with the data centers
  • Improved handling of temporary Backblaze log files when RAM is running low
  • Minor changes and bug fixes

Release Version Number:

  • Mac — 5.3.0
  • PC — 5.3.0

Availability:
July 19th, 2018

Upgrade Methods:

  • Immediately when performing a “Check for Updates” (click on the Backblaze icon and then select “Check for Updates”).
  • Immediately as a download from: https://secure.backblaze.com/update.htm.
  • Immediately as the default download from: www.backblaze.com.
  • Auto-update will begin in a couple of weeks.

Cost:
This is a free update for all Backblaze Cloud Backup consumer and business customers and active trial users.

Announcing an End of Life Process:

We’ve made the tough decision to end support for some older operating systems:

  • Mac OS X 10.5: Apple officially stopped security patching this OS in 2012
  • Mac OS X 10.6: Apple officially stopped security patching 10.6 in 2014
  • Mac OS X 10.7: Apple is no longer supporting this OS as of 2015
  • Windows XP: Microsoft officially ended support for XP in 2014
  • Windows Vista: Microsoft announced the end of support for Vista in 2017

It has been a while since we announced the end of life process for Mac OS X 10.4 and sent out DVDs with Mac OS X 10.6 on them to users who were still on Tiger. There aren’t DVDs to send out this time, but we’d still like to make this as smooth a transition as possible for people using the affected operating systems.

What This Means:

  • Customers still using Mac OS X 10.5, Mac OS X 10.6, Mac OS X 10.7, Windows XP, and Windows Vista will be able to continue backing up and restoring data from those systems. Support for the back up functionality will end on August 1, 2019.
  • The above mentioned operating systems will not be receiving new features and will not auto-update to the latest client versions.
  • Once support officially ends on August 1, 2019, the Backblaze client will no longer be able to back up data to Backblaze.

We strongly encourage people on those operating systems to update to the latest and greatest that Microsoft and Apple have to offer (and officially support). If you have any questions, please reach out to Backblaze support at: https://www.backblaze.com/help.html.

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Welcome Daniel – Sales Development Rep

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/welcome-daniel-sales-development-rep/

Our sales team is growing! As Backblaze for Business continues to grow, we needed someone to come in and help our sales team. That help came in the form of Daniel, the latest Sales Development Representative to join Backblaze! Lets learn a bit more about Daniel shall we?

What is your Backblaze Title?
Sales Development Representative

Where are you originally from?
Waipahu, HI

What attracted you to Backblaze?
I was referred by Natalie Cook, checked it out online, and knew I needed to work here because of the family-like culture!

What do you expect to learn while being at Backblaze?
I look forward to developing my B2B sales & prospecting skills.

Where else have you worked?
I used to work at Equinox Fitness, Betts Recruiting, & lululemon. I’ve also been a private vocal coach, too!

Where did you go to school?
I received my Bachelors of Music and Masters of Fine Arts from Notre Dame de Namur University here in Belmont, CA.

What’s your dream job?
I would love to be a backup singer for an amazing pop vocalist like Shawn Mendes, Charlie Puth, or, if circumstances were different, Whitney Houston. RIP my queen!

Favorite place you’ve traveled?
New York City

Favorite hobby?
Tennis

Of what achievement are you most proud?
Being the first in my family to get a graduate degree.

Star Trek or Star Wars?
Star Wars

Coke or Pepsi?
Diet Coke, all day every day!

Green or Black iced tea?
Black tea is great, but I really love an Arnold Palmer, too. Keep it sweet!

Favorite food?
Korean food. Gotta love those side dishes.

Why do you like certain things?
Not to toot my own horn, but I have impeccable taste (read: sarcasm).

Anything else you’d like you’d like to tell us?
If you ever want to go out to try a new restaurant, play some tennis, or hit up a karaoke bar, I’m your guy!

Arnold Palmer’s are delicious and we just might have to start stocking some lemonade in the office, can’t believe we’ve dropped the ball on that!

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