Saturday, June 6, 2009

Taking Care of Local Business First

Twitter has the potential to drive substantial numbers of customers to single-owner stores, branded stores with trained store managers, and independent service establishments.

What is so intriguing about this opportunity, is what I call the "hyperlocal mindset". The now legendary adage "Think Global: Act Local" is uber-present when it comes to monetizing social network platforms for business.

I live and work and in one of the most visited neighborhoods in the world:
Soho! Imagine how terrific it will be as residents, workers, and visitors now begin following our hyperlocal news services (SohoNews10012) (as our working model) and connect to daily offers, and coupons, published by local merchants, and service professionals, delivered in real-time. Look for the introduction of "evaporative" offers, which expire in a matter of hours if not acted upon, or aggregated, much like a minimum reserve, by a number of community members, to trigger the benefits.

Luxury brands with multiple outposts, dependent more than ever on personalized services, must begin to deleverage decision-making at corporate, and delegate decision-making back out to the stores. Stores are on the front lines..and store managers of big brands in upscale neighborhoods, or malls (commerce eco-systems) should be trained as social relations ambassadors connected to corporate thru internal social web communication systems. This begins to help big business act like local business. Meanwhile, single-store owners, passionate and highly informed, are perfectly positioned to capitalize on Web 2.0 connectivity, well timed as we change the way business is conducted.

I believe strongly that social web platforms, with Twitter in a leading position, will change the flow for billions of dollars of transactional commerce, back to local business. We are testing a number specific concepts everyday in Soho, our own neighborhood. The response has been terrific, merchants are looking to be educated, while service professionals, dependent on scheduling their "time-based inventory" recognize the efficiencies.

The use of Twitter for "micro-payments" small loans, or payments between companies and their customers , is being tested and will impact local-minded business dramatically. Watch for the introduction of "social currency", a neighborhood barter system, more valuable than cash for consumers operating within the local zipcode or area.

Stay tuned as we learn together. The conversation starts now!


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