Maria Raga is the CEO of Depop, a social shopping app that allows users to sell and resell items through its platform. The London-based startup aims to make shopping “social and simple and fun,” while empowering its users to become independent.
“Our mission is to redefine the fashion industry in the same way that Spotify did with music, or Airbnb did with travel accommodation,” she told TechCrunch.
Maria joined Depop in 2014 as the startup’s chief operation officer. She has played a pivotal role in Depop’s brand strategy, helping the company to refocus its vision as it grew without its founder.
“It’s all about arts and creatives,” she told Retail Gazette. “Ultimately that’s what shapes culture right, if we don’t have art and creatives things don’t evolve. It became something that really differentiates Depop against other market places. We have a very strong brand, and a lot of people that would love to be associated with Depop just because of the brand we represent. ”
By defining the company’s mission, as Maria told Courier Media, she could determine how to design marketing strategies and resonate with the company’s user base. She understood what Depop’s target audience wanted and needed in a way that was authentic, allowing the community to grow with minimal money spent on marketing.
“Social appeal is very much a consequence of why we’re successful,” she explained. “We never had to put in a lot of effort to grow […] It is so important to build sustainable community in an authentic way. The moment you make it too commercial, too in your face, then the value of the community becomes very polluted. We really want to make sure people keep joining in an organic way, even if we had all the cash in the world.”
Before joining Depop, she worked at Groupon UK and IE, Privalia and Bain & Company.Tags: ecommerce, peer-to-peer, shopping