Entrepreneurial You

Entrepreneurs want to be a part of an opportunity that they can create value from. This isn’t really a big deal as the startup goer knows that their collaborator has made a commitment for a profitable outcome. This can turn out to benefit the thought leader, but when there is a stark misalignment between the contributor and the entrepreneur’s performance, this is not the case. The lesson here is to share milestones and reach for the stars.

There is a Start

The path that we start doesn’t end.  A place near that we haven’t been to. With the cause being disorientation, some work can avoid shocks that are given as choice itself. Make a decision appear and let the questions take their course, stay calm and move to the situation.

What is Potential?

The price of inaction is greater than the cost of making a mistake. This is a good step to shape an effective campaign. Action or inaction. With the outcome, absence and failure. Will you have learned anything by not achieving? How much can you learn by making mistakes? Your failures have the potential to bring success, while not doing has the potential of just not functioning.

New White Paper Released

Image

Part 1 of Leading With the Intangible: In Business and Practice, about entrepreneurial thought has been released! At $9.95, this is guaranteed to help your enterprise, whether or not you work at a startup. Reach out, and get yours today.

The Modus

Image

The effect of business thinking is not the asked for result, but the usual way. This signifies a certain understanding of personal institution. Think of putting it out there, after the strategic decision has been made. What better modus then that?

Knowing Action

Image

When is the time to take a turn in business? Sure pivoting is awesome, but what happens when that motion leads to a non-action? Reflection can only go so far. This is why taking turn, could yield a better result, as you are already moving.

Think Sublime

Image

With the over abundance of content available and the lack of people that can understand exactly what they are reading, there is a need for accurate sentiment or mood boiler plates. There are experts in every area of study, and way too many collisions of thought. This is why I say, think sublime. More on this later.

Short Term and Long Term Validation

Image

Lean startup thinking, accelerators, angel investment, seed funding, incubators and venture capital. Which path is best for you? With any choice, the goal is to be validated in some form, either with proof that you finished something, a monetary result, a sense of accomplishment, or a plethora of other personal outcomes.

But why is validation as a business loop function the go-to option for gaining traction, isn’t this just short term thinking? In a sense yes, but the only way that you will know that “you are onto something,” is if people outside your immediate family and friends are able to benefit directly from your startup. This can happen in many forms.

And opposed to like it is often touted, this does not have to just revolve around a product or service, there are other pains that need fixing, like conveying knowledge to people for free, as a non-profit blogger.

In my opinion, as you progress past the 5 year mark, and you are still in business, validation as a growth indicator is invalidated, and becomes less and less of a benchmark for improving your creation. Sure it’s important to feel like you are doing something receptive, however the wisdom of the crowd may or may not have your best interests in mind. Whatever it is that you are healing, the important thing is not to stop working on your project, if the whole immediate, positive validation thing doesn’t work out.

Joel Gascoigne:

Sometimes through iteration you uncover learning which invalidates your idea or some key assumptions. At the same time, this means that further iteration can also lead to the exact opposite: uncovering an idea or features which people want and will gain traction.

This is Epic – Gamification

Image

Gamification is a fairly new methodology that you can directly apply to your product or service. In this post I’ll provide a solid basis to help you understand the demand for gamification and some of its components.

According to the Gamification Wiki, gamification typically involves:

-Applying game design thinking to non-game applications
-To make them more fun and engaging
-Can potentially be applied to any industry and almost anything
-The goal is to create fun and engaging experiences
-Converting users into players is the beginning of the gamification process

It’s interesting to know that:

-Over 50% of gamers are now female
-30% of the gamer population now being over 45
-There are 40 million active social gamers in the US (they play at least 1hr/week)
-And there are, unsurprisingly, over 200 million gamers on Facebook

Is ‘gamification’ as a catch phrase played out?

Yes, but that means it is going mainstream. Are your customers looking for coupons to unlock redeemable facebook credits because of a high score? If they’re not, they probably just don’t know that they want to…yet.

Before  getting into some of its intricacies, there are practical examples by BusinessWeek of how you can seamlessly increase page views and sales on your website:

-With a progress bar of your completed tasks
-A countdown to expiring offers
-Leaderboard that shows you viewed and shared the most
-Badges and trophies for reaching a certain level of achievement
-Appointments that reward users to return at a certain period of time

Now we can get into how to rationalize the consequences of using gamification on your website. Having recently attended an Enterprise Gamification Workshop taught by Mario Herger, it was amazing to hear about all of the different scales of businesses that are measuring success based on the performance of recently converted gamified units. While you can certainly apply ‘traditional’ metric values to new gamification components, there are some unique attributes that are worth mentioning.

It’s possible to measure gamification:

-In whether or not your application is a competitive or social game
-The average hours played on it
-Active or registered users
-The player base’s retention
-Frequency of engagement
-Response time

Keep in mind that, if you’re creating a gamified component it’s important to note their skill level and personal and professional role so that you can create a certain level of collaborative autonomy that promotes user into failure- and eventually, that epic win.

If you have the potential to integrate game designer Jane McGonigal’s four basic aspects of what makes a game into your website- a goal, clear rules, a feedback system, and voluntary participation, you are on your way to enhanced motivational pulls like collaborative and engaging success.

The intersection of publishing, mobile and health are topping out the potential of innovation with new game-based elements.

We all know that the news industry has been going through some serious changes in the past few years, so it’s interesting to see initiatives to gamify a news experience with “rooms” and tasks by aligning that with the goals of the news organization. Gamification by gamification. Now, that is meta.

It only seems natural that publishers reign in on the attention model that dominates their business appeal. The history of success of book clubs serves as a nice base to understand how publishing has always been intertwined with being transported to another reality by connecting with the emotions of readers.

Perficient says that gamification can be used to solve real-world health problems (especially on mobile devices) that involve a routine and helps patients overcome any obstacles that might deter them from being victorious.

Education aside, advances in mobile health care applications that use gamification to help people live a better life has to be the most exciting aspect of gamified innovations. Consider Jawbone’s UP, a wristband that integrates the sedentary and fast-moving lifestyles; this is really just the beginning of how the real world and gamified health mobile are becoming intermeshed.

2011 seemed to be the year of gamification. Areas like mobile, health and publishing all became outlets that saw major innovation taking place because of a harmonization of the rules of gamifying an online business.

So this means we should all drop our schedules and start to play? Nope. There is still a rather large gap with the people that gamify and the real world application knowledgeable crowd. Shakespeare also said: “If all the year were playing holidays, to sport would be as tedious as to work.” While this is important to keep in mind,  games are entrenched within societal norms and the results when combined with the efforts of  interdisciplinary designers to achieve a common goal are encouraging.

There’s no telling that whether or not people can agree on its definition or effectiveness, gamification will be a part of the online business mechanics. Gartner released that come 2015, 50 % of “innovative” companies will use gamification to foster innovation.

History shows us that gamification has always been a part of marketing, it’s only now that there is a term that people can relate to their online business. First came loyalty programs, then status-based opportunities, and now we are approaching a gamified loyalty paradigm.

And what we’re learning about gamification is that its gains in effectiveness lean much more towards taking a behavioral psychological approach, opposed to focusing strictly on technology- a notion that any marketer can get behind.

If we are living in an attention based economy, what better way to package the user’s experience then with something that rewards them for their time? There are limits to play and we are still in the beginning of understanding where the sweet spot is for engaging players and converting them back into paying customers.

When will there be a ‘a ha!’ moment for new gamers, game designers, and online business, where they have finally figured out what people are willing to participate in on the web, and what elements should be reserved for consoles and computer gaming platforms? This I think is going to be an interesting race that is going to be molded by the competative edge that makes internet business such an exciting space.

Patrick Salyer, CEO of gamification platform Gigya, thinks there are two main predictors of gaming to success:

“One is making sure that all gamified elements are inherently social, that is, don’t restrict engagement to the internal site community. Award points for activities that reach users’ social [networks] to bring in referral traffic.”

What do you think? How do you use gamification in your website?