Disruptive Trends Thrive in Hyper-Local Markets

Consider the term “hyper-local”.  In the context of this post, it describes products and services that you buy and sell from providers within close physical proximity to where you sleep and work (not to say you’re dozing at your desk…)  What product and service trait makes it the magnetic, most favored choice?

Density.  Product owners choose a few key locations wherein their target customer abounds, and blanket it, making the product’s around the corner, steady-eddy availability a blockade against competitive products. Like a magnet drawing customers, every time.

Read more at Fast Company. This great quote from the article, about one of my favorite disruptive trends, Zipcar, sums it up: “…what catalyzes [customer’s] decision to go with Zipcar is often the discovery that a car is available five minutes from home rather than 10. That trigger unlocks the magnetic properties of Zipcar.”

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Emotional Design: Achieving Marketplace Differentiation

Intriguing title for a provocative concept in product roadmap leadership. TechAmerica San Diego’s Strategy, Innovation & Development Roundtable is covering the topic as part of its 2011 Competitive Edge Series. Learn more about it at this month’s event

Mexico’s Aerospace Summit

The state of Chihuahua hosts aerospace professionals this October. Steadily growing in the face of economic disarray felt by EU and US customers and despite Mexico’s border security hazards, the country’s aerospace industry sector continues to impress.

This event is one example of how the Made in Mexico tag is gaining altitude in one of the world’s highest-value industries: aerospace technology. Chihuahua state offers customers worldwide an impressive expanding value chain, skilled professional and manufacturing talent,  and friendly airspace.

Read more at event website: Mexico’s Aerospace Summit | Chihuahua City, Mexico | October 18-20, 2011.

Your Next Client Is Waiting for You… Overseas.

Where will your next International Client come from? Watch the tech startups from India, Brazil and Europe. They’re knocking on the US market door, and will need expertise in alliance and affiliate marketing and strategic partnerships, for domestic and global market expansion.
Read more at Reuters: http://www.businessinsider.com/20-hot-international-startups-you-need-to-watch-2011-9

Cloud MSPs and VARs: What’s Your Optimal Revenue Plan?

Recently, a provider of secure, Cloud-based content management solutions announced a new threshold in required annual revenue from its network of MSPs and VARs. If threshold is not met, partners can still gain revenue via one-time referral commission.  The shift in policy is common to companies that have the good fortune to be growing, and need channel partners to ratchet up results… even though said growth is due in large part to MSP and VAR performance and expansion.

This provider’s reseller program, according to some channel partners, now requires partners to sign up for a yearly revenue target based on company size and customer demographics.  What’s unclear is how, or if the provider solicited these metric data points from the MSPs and VARs, or pushed them outward, based upon market research and sales trends. Also, how competitive and sector factors weighed results.

A solutions provider that’s channel-friendly and acknowledges that its MSP and VAR partners will haul in the majority of revenues, and administers a profitable, simple compensation program will retain channel partners who deliver increased revenue. The sticking point in channel management relationships comes when the provider is poised for growth, and needs to ensure its partners can ride along, at new levels.

The compensation should always reflect effort expended by both sides — who will carry added burden of back-end billing and administration vs. bag the sale and sprint to the next kill.

It’s up to the MSP or VAR to know its productivity sweet spot, then slot into the appropriate compensation method.  Is the staff most productive only in quick-turn, hunter-gatherer mode?  Or does it thrive when delivering multi-faceted, turnkey services. Pick the compensation program that’s right, and everyone will thrive.

There’s a great example of this scenario at Joe Panettieri’s TalkinCloud blog; check it out!

Nielsen Tracks Mobile Living: Still the Authority

Is That A Neilsen Box In Your Pocket? | Fast Company.

Nielsen Company is tracking mobile computing habits, through an opt-in app that acts like an onboard meter, tracking usage and preferences of on-phone apps.  The Nielsen Mobile Analytics opt-in app also gauges camera use and even power consumption levels.

This service, paired with their recently announced Online Campaign Rating system in conjunction with Facebook, has Nielsen remaining relevant and ahead of the curve.

Cybersecurity: Next Challenge For Electric Cars

Car Jack-Jacking: Cybersecurity Is The Next Challenge For Electric Vehicles | Fast Company.

Wow, glad the author wrote about this key security issue for new electric car industry. As with any electronically controlled device, consider the implications to car owner and the power grid provider of cyber car jacking.  Sets up security issues that extend beyond the simple, personal transaction of juicing up the tank.

While these new cars are capturing the imagination of drivers, many are wary about the reliability of an electric car (will I be stranded roadside, waving a plug and begging for a mobile charge?), while mulling over costs vs. benefits (how high will my household electricity bill rise?). Now, along comes this elephant in the room. A sure challenge for electric car brand marketeers.

Big, smart providers such as RSA and Cisco have already jumped into the electric vehicle field with new products. Will keep an eye on this new tech movement.

Gee Whiz Job: Google Voice Hunter

On a quest for 300 languages, this lucky technologist travels the globe collecting spoken language by local natives.

Linne Ha taps local Google users around the world and hands out Android smartphones loaded with a specially designed speech-gathering app. Local Google users share them with members of their communities, family and friends to amass a collection of recorded conversations.

More: Meet Google’s Voice Hunter On A Quest For 300 Languages | Fast Company.

Chinese chopsticks … Made In Georgia!

The state of Georgia’s bountiful forests of soft wood trees contain yield raw materials that one entrepreneur is using to tilt the trade deficit to our advantage.

I doubt that whittling disposable chopsticks is the best use of these natural resources, since synthetic alternatives abound. But give credit to this company and its community for building jobs, fulfilling a global demand for basic products, and adding to the local tax rolls. Everything grows fast in those hot Georgia summers, even exports!

Read more: Chinese chopsticks — Made In Georgia! | 11alive.com

Gateway California Speaking Engagement

West Coasters: I’ll be speaking at the annual Gateway California in South San Francisco October 26, on Forming Valuable International Business Relationships.

Gateway California is a concise, one-day export/import forum, perfect for West Coast international business experts. Venue is a stone’s throw from SFO, too… an easy fly-in event for your team and you.

About the event. Learn more, register, and save the date!

Tom Hanson bio.

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