Monthly Archives: August 2012

Our YouTube channel is now up to 341 thousand hits

youtube-logo

Back in October 2011 I wrote Our YouTube channel gets 250 thousand hits.

This has proved to be a very popular topic on my blog recently, so I feel obliged to point out that the number is increasing rapidly, and today stands at 341,492.

Our BIPCTV channel has been going since the Centre opened in 2006, when we began posting recordings of our Inspiring Entrepreneurs events, and our success stories.

The most recent upload was From Battlefield to Business, and run in partnership with Heropreneurs, Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund, Royal Navy & Royal Marines Charity and ABF The Soldiers’ Charity, British Legion, Franchising Works and Help for Heroes.

The wonderful Levi Roots and his Reggae Reggae Sauce still tops the charts with 25,541 views, but he has stiff competition from Success Stories Guy Jeremiah of Aquatina Ltd, and William de Lucy from  Amplify Trading.

However my favourite remains Sam Roddick, founder of the ‘erotic emporium’ Coco De Mer, and daughter of Body Shop legend Dame Anita Roddick. She describes herself as an activist first and accidental entrepreneur second.

http://www.youtube.com/bipctv

Levi Roots

Guy Kawasaki ‘Enchants’ SLA Chicago 2012 conference

Guy_KawasakiGuy Kawasaki was the keynote speaker at the recent SLA annual conference in Chicago, and here are my notes from his talk.

Kawasaki started by talking about his time at the Macintosh division of Apple Inc. He described them as the largest collection of egomaniacs ever assembled in the US, until the creation of the Facebook development team.

In hindsight he realised that enchantment was a key part of his life, dating back to his first job in the jewellery trade.

His two recommended essential reads are:
How to win friends and influence people, published in 1931 by Dale Carneigie, and Influence – The Psychology of Persuasions by Robert B Cialdini.

Kawasaki has observed many hi-tech speakers over the years, and with the exception of Steve Jobs, they all ‘suck and go long’.

He always uses the 10 point model for presenting. So he told us if he ‘sucks’ today we will be able to tell.

1.    Achieve Likeability
-    Have a great smile – not just using the jaw, but also the eyes. So crow’s feet are good. Needs to be a Duchene smile
-    Accept others for what they are
-    Default to ‘yes’ – How can I help the person I just met

2.    Achieve Trustworthiness
-    Trust others first
o    Amazon – have a policy of returning an ebook in 7 days if you don’t like it
o    Zappos – buy the shoes online, if you don’t like them we will pay the return postage
o    Nordstrom – you can return anything to them at any time
-    Become a baker not an eater – a producer not a consumer
-    Find something to agree on with customers – it doesn’t have to be a big thing
o    Example of a dislike of Opera

3.    Perfect what you do
-    Do something DICEE
o    Deep
o    Intelligent – they understand my pain / my problem
o    Complete – the totality of the service you offer
o    Empowering – they make you more creative and productive
o    Elegant – someone has thought about the user interface

4.    Launch
-    Tell a story – a personal one, not a marketing one
-    ‘My girlfriend wanted to sell Pez dispensers online’ – the story behind eBay
-    Plant many seeds
-    The key to bottom up marketing – make them available to everyone
-    Use salient points when you talk about your services
o    Calories vs Miles to burn them off
o    Dollars vs Months of food for a family in Eithiopia
o    Gigabytes vs X thousands of songs on portable player

5.    Overcome resistance
-    Provide social proof of success – the white ear-buds that came with iPods were a visual indicator in the streets
-    Use a dataset to change a mindset
o    Gapminder.org – review of number of children and longer lives across the world
-    Enchant all of the influencers in the family not just the ones with the money, e.g. children.

6.    Make your enchantment endure
-    The Grateful Dead provide a space for people to tape their concerts for free
-    Build an ecosystem of the totality of your service
-    Invoke reciprocation
o    Don’t say ‘you are welcome’ say ‘I know you would do the same for me’
o    Enable people to pay you back in their own way
-    Don’t rely on money (e.g. price offers) – it is not the core of enchantment

7.    Great enchanters are great presenters, so:
-    Customize your introduction
-    Sell your dream
o    iPhone = $188 of parts manufactured in a factory in China, but is more than the sum of its parts
-    10 is the optimum number of slides
-    Delivered in 20 minutes at most
-    A 30 point font size is optimal – so you don’t read your text out to your audience

8.    Use technology
-    Social media is free and ubiquitous so use it
-    Remove the speed bumps for your customers
-    Capta reduces the number of customers
-    Sungevity.com – Uses your home address to mock up installation using satellite imagery
-    Provide added value
o    Information
o    Insights
o    Assistance
-    Example of Alltop.com website – aggregates information by topics
-    ‘Eat like a bird, poop like an elephant’. i.e. take little – give a lot
-    Use a lot of sources and spread the information.

9.    Enchant Up
-    When your boss or partner asks you to do something – drop everything else and do it.
-    Prototype fast
-    Deliver bad news early

10.    Enchant Down
-    Book by Daliel H Pink – Drive
-    Provide a MAP
o    Mastery – if you come and work for me …
o    Autonomy – if you come and work for me …
o    Purpose – if you come and work for me …
-    Empower action
-    ‘Suck it up’ – be a boss who is willing to do the ‘dirty job’

Kawasaki summed up Enchantment as having;
The Quality of Apple – the trustworthiness of Zappos – and the likeability of Richard Branson.

Enchantment-Cover

Arganic Oil a niche Success Story

Arganic_Argan_OilDespite being a ‘jack of all-trades and master of none‘ librarian, I have to admit to not having heard of Argan Oil before. But thanks to Dana Elemara the founder of Arganic I now know much more than I did.

According to Wikipedia Argan oil is a plant oil produced from the kernels of the Argan tree. It is found in Morocco, and is valued for its nutritive, cosmetic and numerous medicinal properties.

The Arganic Oil website expresses it more evocatively:

Argan oil is one of the healthiest and rarest oils in the world coming from the UNESCO protected argan tree. Often nicknamed ‘liquid gold’ this oil was the Berber people’s secret for centuries

It takes approximately 15 hours and 30kg of fruit to produce just 1 litre of argan oil. This lengthy process involves skilled handwork that has been passed down from generations.

In late summer the argan fruit ripens and falls to the ground where it is gathered. It is then laid out in the sun to dry. To make the oil, the dried outer fruit is first removed, then, using traditional artisanal techniques involving stones, the seeds are extracted from the hard inner shell.

Argan TreeUp to this point everything is done by hand, furthermore it is only women involved and this employment provides not only a good source of income in a poor region but an opportunity for them to gain independence. The process is governed by cooperatives who also give these women access to free education, and use some of the profits of the argan oil trade to benefit the local tribes and communities.

The seeds are then cold pressed to extract the oil. Nothing is wasted in the process, the fruit pulp is fed to cattle and the leftover seed pulp is used as fuel. At Arganic we have strict controls at every stage of production.

Dana had attended a couple of events and courses at the Business & IP Centre, but is still relatively new to the library. But it sounds like we have already been of help.

‘I trademarked my name only after being aware of it through the free IP seminar at the British Library and it was one of the best things I could have done at the start of my business as I have come across and won IP issues since.’

Here is her story:

Dana had heard about argan oil through relatives that were raving about it but found it difficult to get hold of in the UK. It was then that she decided to leave her mathematical and corporate background behind and the idea for Arganic came about. Luckily Dana had friends living in Morocco who put her through to the right people and the more she learned about this oil the more she fell in love with it and the important social impact it plays for women in Morocco.

Update

I’ve just received this exciting update from Dana:

What a lovely post, thank you so much. There have been so many things happen since we last met, details on my last newsletter here, including TV appearances. Also last week my argan oil won a gold award from The Guild of Fine Foods, and today I found out that I won a Shell Livewire Grand Ideas award which gives me £1000 and free PR. They said I achieved the highest points in my category, and am now in the run for Young Entrepreneur of the Year which is announced in November. So I am extremely pleased right now.

I am still visiting the library and recommending the business centre constantly.

All the best, Dana

Arganic founder Dana Elemara

Arganic founder Dana Elemara