Thursday, July 05, 2012 - Hilarity Meets Business Advice

Check out this commercial:

Far funnier than anything I saw during the Super Bowl, or since. When my current batch of Cost Co razors run out, I may very well have to give them a try.

The commercial nails two other points that I'm constantly telling my customers about:

1. Embrace your limitations and use them as a strength. "Stop paying for shave tech you don't need" -- the flip side of this is, our razors aren't as flashy as the competition. Rather than lamenting this, embrace it. Say you're building a web app, and because you're a start up there isn't as much functionality built out yet. Use that as a good thing. Force your software to be simple and easy to use, and free from all that junk nobody really uses.

2. Solve a real problem, and everything else takes care of itself. The value proposition for is easy: save money, save time. doesn't need a fancy website, or packaging, or or even amazing customer service - they just need to deliver on this simple premise. If they do, then their customers will have the incentive to stick around as they grow to finally put out a fully mature product.

My favorite example of this to tell my customers about is eBay. When eBay started, there was no Buy It Now, or Make an Offer or even a way to schedule the ending of an auction. If you wanted an auction to end Sunday evening, you had to start it Sunday evening. And the interface was terribly clunky - no way your grandma could ever use it. But, eBay solved two real problems: (a) how can I sell the junk in my basement and (b) how can I trust the people I'm doing business with (aka, feedback). Because they delivered on those items, people hung around while eBay matured into a real product.

1 comment:

  1. It's funny where you pick up some genuinely good business advice. I've been following relevant blogs for a long time now but I've learnt most of my know-how from quirky spots like this. If you know where to look, the lessons are everywhere.