Author Archives: Braden Kelley

Why do dead presidents have no value in the online world? In other words, why can I not pay cash online anywhere I want in the same way I can in the physical world?For years now, when I am not busy serving paying clients, from time to time I bang the drum for my vision of making all online stores like brick and mortar stores where people can ‘walk’ in and pay cash. Now why is this so important for online retailers?Online shopping is growing in popularity under current conditions, but it could grow even faster if the final barriers were eliminated. Enabling customers to pay cash online would eliminate barriers to online shopping posed by fears of: 1. Stolen credit card information2. Identity theft3. Invasion of privacyOnline merchants are missing out on shoppers who may never join the cashless society (UK statistics provided for illustration purposes) by not …

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The coupon is as American as apple pie, and American shoppers love a good bargain. Some people love to clip coupons and some feel that it is beneath them, that somehow using a coupon makes them less of a person. I’m not quite sure I understand that one, but to each his own. Despite American’s aversion to haggling, there is no doubt that there are a lot of goods and services in America with variable prices. It is just that in most cases, instead of asking for a deal, you have to know about a deal ahead of time. This usually means knowing where to find the coupon.Similar to the stories of three people in a row of airline seats having paid vastly different prices for seats next to each other, in the same way, three diners may all be paying different prices for the same entrees. Whether companies want … Continue reading

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Some might say it is a step forward, some a step backwards, but coming soon to a Jet Blue airplane near you–access to Yahoo! Mail (e-mail) or Yahoo! Messenger (instant messaging client) for free in the sky via WiFi access points.You won’t be able to access the web willy nilly, but a separate agreement with RIM will allow feeding your Blackberry addiction too. Now what good is their in-flight television system? People won’t be able to get away from the office. Check out the full article over at Engadget. Is this a step forward or a step backwards?What do you think?The innovation in this example comes not from the fact that Jet Blue is offering in-flight e-mail and instant-messaging, but in the airline and Yahoo! recognizing that even though the bandwidth they have available is not sufficient to support unrestricted web browsing, there is still something interesting that the partners … Continue reading

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As an independent consultant, I try to talk to as many other fellow practitioners as my schedule allows to keep abreast of what others are experiencing and doing. What I have found in the area of billing clients is that there are a myriad of ways of receiving compensation for the work that we do. Everything from traditional hourly/daily/weekly to at-risk payment types like graduated rates, milestone payments, equity stakes, contingencies based on achieved savings, royalties, and even retainers.Of all the different methods that I’ve seen, I think that royalties and savings contingencies make the most sense in revenue augmentation and cost reduction scenarios. Companies should be willing to reward those practioners that deliver real revenue increases and cost savings, and practioners should be willing to accept lower compensation if they don’t.But when it comes to looking at innovation projects and innovation process then I think that the retainer model … Continue reading

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I came across a couple of interesting articles on businessweek.com about relatively new payment solutions that people are looking at. The first article is about a company called National Payment Card that links your bank account to your drivers license or store loyalty card – creating a virtual debit card protected by a PIN. Transactions are processed as e-checks through the Automated Clearing House (ACH) bypassing costly interchange fees charged by Visa, Mastercard, and others for processing debit and credit card payments. In the areas where this is up and running, some consumers find this payment option quite handy (especially when coupled with a discount) and others avoid it out of fears of identify theft.What do you think? Would you sign up for a solution like this?The second article is about the GratisCard (which is now known as the RevolutionCard). The RevolutionCard is backed by Steve Case (founder of AOL) … Continue reading

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I popped over to YouTube the other day to watch a music video and it struck me that artists are missing a huge opportunity for self promotion. Instead of clamoring for YouTube to take down their copyrighted material, artists of all types should be instead clamoring for YouTube to help them promote their material.Now I know YouTube has been avoiding having advertisements, but will be forced to have them now that Google has acquired the company and expects it to make a profit. Now it is only a question of timing, and Google figuring out how they can distribute their ad inventory on Google in the optimal way to maximize revenue without chasing the audience away to other video sites.But will this Google ad syndication approach be the best thing for YouTube and the content that usually ends up there? For Bob’s homemade video, sure maybe, but what about for … Continue reading

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We went out and got our Christmas Tree last night and it turned out to be more rewarding than last year for a couple of reasons.Reason #1 – A still-bound six-foot tree fits through the 40% fold-down of a Honda Civic sedan with the trunk closedReason #2 – My wife had the great idea of wrapping the still-bound six-foot tree in an old queen-size fitted sheet before putting it in the car and carrying it up the two flights of stairsThe end result was that I had a lot less cleanup to do after un-binding and setting up the tree.Kudos to my wife for the great idea!

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