Just read a good piece by Alex Taub on The Most Important Part Of A Product Integration Deal. The key takeaway that every person in business development should remember is:
If you are trying to get your service/product integrated into somebody else's product, then I 100% agree with Alex's view which is if you cannot get the proper placement, you should walk away from the deal. These things always end badly if you don't get it right. The results will be bad, the partnership won't last very long, both sides are unhappy, typically the consumer experience will also suck - all bad things and a waste of precious time and resources.
This advice also works for people who are on the receiving end. If you are going to integrate a 3rd party into your solution/service, you should also make sure that placement is perfect. I know the pressure is often to do a deal and give somebody an integration and call it quits. It is also easy to give your own internal features a preference or better placement. That's not good enough. If you are going to have somebody integrate into your product, you should focus on the consumer experience above everything else. First, make sure the product is valuable to your users, that the experience is fluid and simple and that they can find it. That's good for everybody involved.
I just finished reading a great article on "Passive Income Strategies For Web Designers" posted at Smashing Magazine.
The article focuses on how web designers can find ways to earn passive income. The options examined in the piece were to sell themes and templates, write and sell an eBook and create a job board for designers. The writer does make it clear that this is just his experience so I don't think it was meant to be a thorough investigation of all the options. In saying that, I have seen this "type" article many times and have personally had enough conversations with designers to suggest that there seems to be some myopic thinking in this space. Note to designers: You aren't in the design business. You are in a service business, helping clients achieve their business objectives on the internet. Anything that helps your clients do that should be something you think about offering if you want to be successful in business. Designers are creative and love to create things, which is why most of the "passive income" strategies that I hear mentioned are based building something new - an ebook, a job board. It is very "me as a designer" centric view, which is completely fine if it wasn't for the "ways you can make more money" part of the equation. If you want to do more design things and make a little more money, then yes absolutely do the things mentioned in the article. If you want to make more money as a designer, then think about your clients and what they need.
The upsetting thing is that I have yet to see an article or have a conversation with a designer where they said: " I took a survey and spoke to my clients and they want ...". Ask yourself "What do my clients want? What are they struggling with? How can I help them be more successful?
Let's take a typical SMB as an example. A designer is normally the very first person a small business hires when building their online presence. Instead of just building them a site and maybe setting up their hosting, why not charge a monthly fee to manage everything for them? Site design updates, small content changes, keeping the site fresh, hosting and ongoing management all included in one price. SMBs don't particularly get excited about managing their own hosting or logging in to change content and this is of great value. It isn't design related and probably doesn't stir a designers creative side, but clients want it and it pays the bills. If you did this with 100, 200 or 500 clients, you are talking about a lucrative recurring revenue stream. I can hear designers arguing that it isn't "passive" but nothing ever really is so stop focusing on the passive piece and start focusing on how you can help clients succeed with services that scale. This is about seeing yourself in the ongoing service business.
I am not suggesting that a lot of designers don't already do this today. Reseller hosting has been around for a long time and many designers already manage hosting for their clients. At Weebly we have had tremendous success with our own white label designer platform that is designer to allow a designer to build, host and manage client websites in just the fashion I describe above. Obviously some designers are stepping up the plate.
What do you think?
I went quiet for weeks and then I post two new car summaries in one week. Aren't you guys lucky. I considered waiting but when the next car on your list is the new Ferrari V12, it is hard not to get excited.
This is the most powerful and high-performance Ferrari road car ever built. The F12berlinetta’s 6.2 liter V12 engine delivers 740 horsepower and 690 Nm of torque, 80 per cent of which is available at just 2,500 rpm and it revs to a stratospheric 8,700 rpm. Acceleration from 0-60mph in 3.1 seconds and from 0 to 125mph in 8.5 seconds. It is also the fastest Ferrari road car ever around the famed Fiorano circuit in 1 minute and 23 seconds, that’s faster than the Ferrari Enzo for gosh sakes.
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It has been a few weeks since my last post. I wasn't sure that the new Pagani would be a match for the old Zonda (one of my favorite cars ever). I have now read over a dozen automotive journalists reviews and watched a bunch of video thrashings of the new Pagani Huayra and it looks like Horatio Pagani has done it again, he has redefined the supercar market.
The highlights of the Huayra include a twin turbocharged AMG V12 good for 730hp and 737lp ft of torque in a car that weighs about 3,000 pounds. That's Veyron levels of performance. Other highlights include the first use of carbon titanium in the tub construction and over 4,000 total parts, with each and every nut and bolt having a Pagani logo inscribed. The acceleration is ludicrous and is described by some automotive journalists as “violent is the best word to sum up a trip from 1500 to 6500 RPM” or “the engine is just phenomenally powerful, and when it’s delivering the full 737lp ft of torque, it scrambles your brain”. And the compliments keep coming; "Nothing will ever be the same again, not once you've experience the ferocious Pagani Huayra" and "a waver of turbo boost sneaks up from behind you, hooks its fingernails into your nostrils and pulls your head back hard".
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