Monday, June 27, 2016

The Global Economy: Panama Canal and South Carolina

The Panama Canal is almost 2,000 miles away from South Carolina yet, as an illustration of how globally connected world economies are today, the upgrades to the Canal are having a profound affect on Greenville, SC.

The widening of the Canal means larger ships can pass through which, in turn, mean that it's now cost-effective to ship cargo directly from Asia to the East Coast.  Warehouses and transportation networks (plus jobs) need to be created, and South Carolina has a edge over other Eastern cities, in terms of cheap labor and real estate.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

My Breakfast Talk: Turning A Potential Negative into a Positive

This morning, I gave a breakfast talk at my local chamber of commerce. 

It went great, but it could have been in crisis before it started!

Last night, they sent an email saying that the normal conference room they use for talks (which was large, and had an overhead projector / screen for Powerpoint) was severely damaged by a water leak, so they had to move the event to a much smaller conference room.

It meant no projector and, instead of everyone seated comfortably in a large room, they were crammed tightly around a table that took up most of a tiny room.

Instead of panicking, I turned the situation into a strength. I didn't use Powerpoint. Instead, I just talking with them.

I had access to the backgrounds of the business owners, so I used them in my examples. They stopped and paid attention.

It also started a discussion. I ended up only talking for 1/2 the time, and they talked with each other, on my topic (strategic innovation), the info I gave, and their situations.

At the end, they were energized, and I had at least one person interested in doing business with me. A lawyer with an independent practice said he had a corporation as a client who could use my help.

Info World Article: 7 deadly career mistakes developers make

I was quoted in a recent Info World Article:

http://www.infoworld.com/article/3069558/application-development/7-deadly-career-mistakes-developers-make.html

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) For Innovation

Most of the common KPIs that executives typically look at are good for measuring the financial performance of their organizations.

But, what are some useful KPIs for measuring innovation?

Here are 2 of them:

1. What percentage (%) of revenue / profits are derived from products / services that are less than X years old?

2. Your average sales price (per unit)?

You want both of these metrics to be increasing.

The first KPI helps you track how successful your organization is at creating new products and services that your customers actually value and want to buy.

The second KPI will tell you if your pricing power is increasing (By making it per unit, you discount the effects of customers buying in greater volume).  An increasing average unit price indicates that your customers are receiving (and paying for) increased value, and don't regard your products  / services as a commodity.



Friday, June 17, 2016

The Joker's Tattoos: Innovative Content Marketing For "Suicide Squad"






To promote this summer's "Suicide Squad" movie (based on the D.C. Comics series where the government uses villains to complete dangerous missions), the producers went beyond trailers.

As an example of synergy between content marketing the film, and the film itself,  the movie is giving the Joker tattoos for the first time.  Now, to publicize the film, the producers are revealing that the tattoos contain meanings and hidden "Easter Eggs" based on the long comics history of the joker.

There are two lessons for business:

1. Are there any neat stories behind your products and services that can "edutain" prospects and draw attention to your business?

2. Can you build interesting content into your business that you can later use for marketing?