MobiCorp has submitted the provisional patent application for our contextual mobile advertising solution, txtnsave. What is that you say? Well consider this, you need to grab some wine for dinner with friends tonight and you’ll be meeting them in North Sydney, a location you don’t know to well (or do it doesn’t matter). SMS txtnsave with “merlot north sydney” and txtnsave will get back to you with the best specials or deals for merlot in North Sydney.
We’ve reached “patent pending” thanks to the hard work of my partners, Andrew Lowe and Brett McDowall. It’s exciting stuff, I’ve never been involved with a patent before (even though it is just provisional at this stage). Hopefully having the patent will give us more of an advantage when speaking with potential customers.
This week I’ll be out wearing down the shoe leather, which in my case is actually thong leather (that’s a sandal like thing for the non-Australians), compiling a list of the potential advertisers around Newtown area.
We want to connect the residents of Newtown and the students of Sydney University with the best deals on food and alcohol in the area.
We want to connect the bars, pubs, restaurants and bottleshops of Newtown with the residents of Newtown and students of Sydney University. We want to connect these businesses with potential customers right when the customer is looking for it.
(Oh and Don’t Tell is about to get a very fresh make over to start moving forward properly – but thats another post)
It’s an unfortunate day to day if you read Smart Company’s ‘Entrepreneur Tim Pethick shuts innovation business‘.
Yesterday was a sad day for entrepreneur Tim Pethick as he closed the Australian office of innovation company Whatif!
The founder of Nudie had joined Whatif! as managing director six months ago and had high hopes that he could not only grow the innovation consultancy but also to use the agency to spearhead an innovation agenda in Australia.
He says the issue was that the global board deemed Australia not exciting enough as a marketplace.
“Australian companies also expect to get half a million innovation projects for $50,000. The innovation ambition exceeds their willingness to pay.”
He also believes that Australians do not focus on innovation output. “They think of the cost not the new lines of products and services or the new revenue.”
I suppose if I look at the Australian start-up scene maybe this is right, or maybe its just that we don’t have the amount of people places like the US have.
Maybe there is an opportunity to change this?
Last night I attended a presentation by Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Realestate.com.au (RE), Simon Baker in Sydney’s MLC Center. You can read the flyer over on BSI’s site.
It was a truely interesting talk that Simon gave. I like short posts so here is what I took out of his talk:
- In the internet business where you are the “middle man” it’s important to focus on the ones that are paying you. That’s all well and good you say. However, when asked why Simon thought RE has beaten it’s competitor, domain.com.au, Simon stated that it was because RE focused on real estate agents, the people that paid (their customers), and getting the agents to put their properties up and pay for it. Domain.com.au on the other hand spent a lot more time and resources capturing the minds of the end-user. By capturing the agents, RE in turn captured the agents customers.
- Simplify your products. When Simon started with RE there was over 40 ways of selling the one product, by simplifying and focusing on 1 product RE became easier to understand and sell.
- Simon was asked “I noticed you didn’t talk about the website, the features of the website or anything like that, why?”. In reply Simon said “And that’s exactly the point.” Beautiful pages, brand new technology is no substitute for paying customers and good reason for people to use the site.
Each of these points sunk home with me because in both of my ventures I’m tackling exactly the same problems.
This morning the Sydney entrepreneur group for OpenCoffee had a great guest speaker Mike Culver. Mike is an evangelist for Amazon’s Web Services and seeing as I really haven’t investigated Amazon’s new services I decided it would be worth attending.
What Amazon has looks amazing although I’m not sure I need to tackle it just yet. At the end of the day though, it would almost be silly not to take advantage of the scalability and low cost they offer. Mike explained their offering exceptionally well.
This isn’t much of a post, I know, but thanks to the people that organised it.