Pierre DeBois

SMBs Need to Study, Not Mimic, Successful Digital Strategies

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kicheko
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Re: Reply to Shawn
kicheko   12/27/2011 5:11:58 AM
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Broadway - The biggest challenge for SMBs and any experimentation they may want to do is indeed the funds. They can't quite afford that extra employee, and those that are there need to be used as much as possible on the profit generating projects. Experimentation is therefore mostly a sacrifice of limited resources, born out of looking far in the future.

kicheko
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Re: Reply to Shawn
kicheko   12/27/2011 5:05:35 AM
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One of the easy things about small businesses is that they are less bureaucratic. Decisions can be made simply and this allows for more experiments, as well as stopping at any point, of those experiments that prove not to be bearing fruit.

Broadway
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Re: Reply to Shawn
Broadway   12/18/2011 3:40:03 PM
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Pierre, for such offline experimentation, then the SMB will need a willing and able employee or two, who won't mind the extra work on top of their probably already overfilled plate.

Pierre DeBois
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Re: Reply to Shawn
Pierre DeBois   12/18/2011 3:17:46 PM
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Broadway,

aaphil notes the point that experimentation is possible, but only on a limited basis. You are right that SMBs can have a limited capacity, but if the experiement is done offline from business operations and in a small scale, some testing is possible.  A mild test of a website redesign can be done outside of a live website - with an editor and browser preview a site can be refined before being unleashed online. 

The same can be extended to an app. Digital experimentation can be done with a small lean investment of resource and time.  The key is lean.

 

Shawn Hessinger
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Re: Reply to Shawn
Shawn Hessinger   11/21/2011 10:39:32 AM
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Going back full circle in our discussion, this is where some kind of analytics will come in handy. Obviously, the technology used will depend on budget, but being able to track results (what works and what doesn't) can be very valuable in the beginning of a venture. See our post on Steve Chou's experience with using Web analytics to create online store for more on this. 

aaphil
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Re: Reply to Shawn
aaphil   11/21/2011 1:08:49 AM
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Broadway,

Yes there's that but I meant a more birds-eye view of the process from beginning to end. It's good to have reference points to where failure or unproductive actions can be avoided. If you have the steps down somewhere, this process is alot easier. This is why I try to write down (type) somewhere everything I do.

Broadway
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Re: Reply to Shawn
Broadway   11/20/2011 8:55:27 PM
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@aaphil, when you say sometimes a lot can be lost in the process if "tracking" is not done, what sort of tracking are you talking about? Simply tracking of customer feedback?

 

aaphil
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Re: Reply to Shawn
aaphil   11/20/2011 4:10:55 PM
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Broadway,

I have learned alot of things by trial & error. That process works most of the time but sometimes alot is lost in the process if there is no real tracking. So in the Lean Startup, he outlines the 3 step process to minimize time to market. I tried it & it takes alot of the fluff out of the process. I realized a few time that some of the 'steps' I thought were necessary are insignificant. It's just a matter of using the feedback from consumers to make your offering more valuable.

Broadway
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Re: Reply to Shawn
Broadway   11/5/2011 12:50:52 PM
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Aaphil, care to share your story, or two?

aaphil
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Re: Reply to Shawn
aaphil   10/29/2011 5:10:59 PM
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Pierre,

You are absolutely right. It sounds like the excellent process outlined in The Lean Startup. I've tried it, and it works. Good to also have the data to back you up.

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