Archive for the 'Blog' Category

Merry Christmas!

I just want to wish a Merry Christmas to you all 🙂

Whatever, wherever you celebrate I hope you have a well deserved break.

I am definitely looking forward to a break – some great time to unwind.

Also I just want to thank you all for your readership, engagement and participation.  I am humbled by how much the blog has grown this year.

A couple of months back we hit the million mark and now (it’s getting hard to measure) up to 350,000 people around the world engage with my content each month.

Building up from scratch in May 2008 that is tremendous effort (blows my mind).

So thank you again.

Enjoy the break, have some great downtime with your friends/family (I sure will) and I will catch you on the 4th.



I am taking time off in February to write my second book and I need your help.  I need some case studies of ordinary products that have had some remarkable ideas which have transformed their product or industry.  If you have any (or can point me in the right direction) email me [email protected] – will give you attribution.

December 22nd, 2009

Going out on your own: Pursuing the Passion 35, 36 & 37

#35: Deliver the unexpected
Remember your client delivery doesn’t end when the final payment comes in, follow up, give them some surprise bonuses, unexpected benefits are the cornerstone of my client delivery.

#36: Quit! (fail fast)
Quit and quit often. I fail at lots of projects, it helps me to recognise something is failing and quit early.

#37: Persevere
Persevere.. the rewards really do come to those that turn up and turn up consistently. My theory is every interaction you have is a potential customer in the waiting, not in the next 3 months but the next 5 years, they will either have a need for your product or have an encounter with someone who does. Your in this for the long haul, so act like that.

December 20th, 2009

What ever happened to Pay What You Want?

Some of you will remember my Pay What You Want Marketing experiment at the start of the year – I have done a bit of a detox over at the NZHerald.  Give it a read (there will be a bwagy blog about it in the near future) and be keen on your thoughts.

What would you think is the best industry for a pay what you want model?

December 17th, 2009

A place to connect

Of late I’ve noticed a lot of connecting going on, between you guys – the readers.

What typically happens is someone posts a comment, then they get a few visitors to their site and then through some kind of magic (most likely email) the connections happen.

That’s quite neat, so if you’d like to meet up with some interesting people, just remember to maybe place that comment that you have in your mind as you never know who you’ll meet 😉

December 16th, 2009

The books I most recommend

These are some of my most recommended books, pick them up buy a couple of copies.

  • Direct from Dell by Michael Dell
  • Dot Bomb by David Kuo
  • Maverick by Ricardo Semler
  • E=mc2 a biography of the world’s most famous equation by David Bodanis
  • 80/20 rule by Richard Koch
  • The Dip by Seth Godin
  • Tipping point by Malcolm Gladwell
  • E*Myth by Michael Gerber
  • Four Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss

If you can buy these have a read and create a whole new platform of knowledge for yourself…

December 15th, 2009

A million dollar minute

It’s not going to be too far away that someone earns a million dollars a minute.

Why is that?

The only singular constraint we all have is time.

Products & Services geared to save their customers TIME are going to become more and more compelling.

Especially in the knowledge sector, even if they can acquire the knowledge themselves – the time gain of purchasing knowledge is going to win out.

So start thinking ahead – how are you going to earn your million dollar minute?

December 14th, 2009

Eureka! Wurld

wurld logo_2col

I have found it! Wurld water that is. A charity set up to sell bottled water.

For every bottle of water sold the profits go to helping the 1 in 6 worldwide who don’t have access to clean water.

Simple concept, nice branding, great cause to get behind (and please do).

Oh and did I say the bottles are made from corn starch thus biodegradable?

It’s not the complete answer but like the Prius it’s the beginning….

December 13th, 2009

Young & Shand: The journey begins

Update: The Young & Shand site is live now! (just updating post to capture search traffic).

As is the spirit of the blog – you all get the pre-pre-announcements.  Over the past year Duncan Shand & I have worked together on numerous projects (quite successfully) so much so that we have decided to join forces and create Young & Shand a Digital Agency.

Things will really kick off in the New Year (to give us time to enjoy the lovely kiwi summer) but keep an ear out.  We’ll be working on our Manifesto to give you guys (and everyone else) an idea of what we stand for.

It’s still early days yet but just a heads up…


We are hiring! We need a Designer / Dev (Generalist) / Marketing Strategist.  More details to follow but can email [email protected] if anything is of interest.

December 10th, 2009

Going out on your own: Pursuing the Passion 32, 33 & 34

#32: Time Out
Take time out. Have your limits. Keep home time, family time, your own time. This is essential.

#34: Reflection
Review and reflect every week, month and quarter to check your progress.

#35: KPIS
Set Key Performance Indicators and strive to achieve them.

December 8th, 2009

Request for research: Identifying purchasing behaviour

Can someone please build a framework for store assistants to be able to quickly diagnose a customers intent?

Things like:

  • Customer entered the store casually wandered around equates to casual shopping.
  • Customer walked directly to a specific section and is browsing.
  • Customer has one hand in pocket, or clasping handbag

I don’t know the specifics but a model so that store assistants can recognise the behaviour for a certain outcome then adjust their service accordingly. A win/win for both parties.

Wouldn’t be too hard, grab some security footage for a day, monitor what happens, classify users into purchasing behaviours, link to commonalities.  Test again with new footage.

December 7th, 2009

Squeeze your market

You can be really really specific with your market.  In fact squeeze it.  Make it small enough that you can deliver insane value to this subset.

The intriguing thing? Once you get this market – because you’ve been so specific, delivered insane value, your customers help you grow the market.

By squeezing and focusing you can actually grow your original market.

December 6th, 2009

The Yes Experiment

A friend of mine is trying the ‘say yes to any social invite’ experiment – whereby instead of saying no to something out of the norm say yes and see what happens.

It’s a great idea, sure to create some great life experiences and remarkable stories.

Why not give it a try, pick something you tend to shy away from and say yes for the next three months…

Or have you already done it before?

December 2nd, 2009

Honesty is the best sales tactic

Sales Techniques how do you sell someone on what you’ve got?

Honesty is the best tactic.  When you’re honest you feel confident in what you’re selling, it forces you to focus on customers that will receive excess value and builds a strong relationship with your customer.

You can apply the old tried and true sales circles etc but I’ll be honest they do work but they’re not for me.

In approaching sales in the back of my mind is:

  • A best result is where the client receives excess value (and no that doesn’t have to be from me).
  • If we don’t work today I want to have opportunity to work in future.
  • I want motivated customers who want to work for the long term.
  • I want clients I can proudly tell my friends about and that are going to help me in the long run.

Based on this thinking the sales techniques to trick / trap consumers isn’t the best approach.

Thus approacing each meeting with the idea:

  • Best for client
  • Both reap excessive value
  • Be honest
  • Straight up: this is what I’ve got, this is what it’ll do and here’s what you need to do next

Is going to arm you with a solid way to sell your product to the right people and grow your business.

Consumers are increasingly sophisticated they want to be looked after they can read a sales pitch and it makes them uncomfortable.  Transparency is the only winning approach.

December 1st, 2009

What are you doing all the way down here? You could:
- View my about page
- Or for first timers the New Here? page
- Or maybe email this to a friend
- Or subscribe to get blog updates