Hey all. I am no longer posting here. Check me out at my personal site for the latest.
An excerpt from an upcoming article.
“Every two days now we create as much information as we did from the dawn of civilization up until 2003.” — Eric Schmidt
Combine the above fact with low/no cost reproduction and we are soaking in the global soup bowl of digital abundance. Most everything is becoming a commodity and it is no longer what we buy so much as it is who we buy it from and, more importantly, how it comes to us. We seek to be led to a product without knowing we are and by people we deem credible. One of my favorite examples of this recently is This Is My Jam, which does nothing except allow you to choose one song at a time to highlight as your “it” song of the moment. Each time you change it, a gesture is pushed to your Facebook wall and/or Twitter page. The weight of it being only one song combined with the profile or deemed social value of the person profiling the song drives usage. This fundamental shift in commerce applies to brands as well. Those who communicate authenticity and exude credibility are uniquely positioned to drive revenue as a platform for the the relevant exchange of goods and services — even those which they do not themselves produce.
In an era where it costs almost nothing to create and launch a digital product and where the potential rate of return is so high, that it’d be foolish not to try to bring that kind of startup to life. Just remember to keep it simple and resist the urge to muck it up with needless complexity.
Be it an individual citizen, advocacy group or someone working inside your local City Hall, it would seem that consistently turning advocacy into action, that is the taking of genuine interest and knowledge and converting it into measurable results, is a perpetually daunting process. So much so that many reserve themselves to staying involved only on the surface (donations and mixers), while others stay out of the game altogether. Often being discarded off hand as indifferent. It is my contention that not only do these people all care very much about being catalysts for progress in their respective communities but given the opportunity to be engaged, they would too get a great deal of satisfaction from the process that is identifying problems and participating in the road that is the building of viable solutions to the same.
I have found it most effective to leverage this advocacy in a mostly passive way and so I employ a mixture of technology and peer networking. One part ubiquitous technology in SMS (text messaging) and one part good old fashioned community outreach (signage and events). I engage the community at large and identify issues that may have market viable solutions in the context where they occur. So instead of scouring over polling and map data in a 35th floor conference room, people can tell me about problems in real time as they incur the pain caused by them. This on going effort is assisted in great part by those most fervent of advocates in each city. Those who engage in consistent communication and make introductions towards revealing lesser known problems that create significant pain points for a group of people.
Birchbox and their MVP
I am certain that organizational models created before the advent of the internet are doomed to fail as they are mired in complexities that people w/ technologies will inevitably seek out and destroy. Industries as well as institutions and municipalities are being and will ultimately be disrupted by smart, connected people leveraging the tools of the day to create platforms on which their peers can participate; thus cutting out of the far-too-cumbersome loop profit-seeking companies and municipalities whose bureaucracies currently and mostly unwittingly serve to hold back the human spirit. The creator in all of us.
My favorite business in terms of addressable market from Start Up Weekend Detroit.
Tumblr Theme Customized
Testimonials are Broken. An idea I am playing with.
What has been taking up all my time and generating an equal amount of excitement this last month. More to come soon.
Visit Hospitality Hunt and share it if you will please.
I still some two weeks later continue to get emails about this article daily from people who do now or used to live in Detroit to say thank you. Surreal actually.
You can’t outsource authenticity.