When Is Too New Just Right

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I really like the new tools and toys that Web 2.0 platforms are spinning out on a daily basis, but it sure takes alot of self control to know what to ignore and what to invest your time in learning more about. I often feel that’s why some folks read this blog, they know I’ll have one of my moments and run off and investigate some new technology and them come back and give my thoughts on it.

Lately, I’ve been ignoring more and more, mainly because they don’t seem to improve on much of what’s out there. But sometimes, it’s easy to look at something at face value and think, that’s just silly, there is no business application for that. That’s just a bunch of kids and people who have nothing better to do ranting about what they ate for lunch. Sound familiar? I can’t tell you how many times in 2006 I still heard that about blogs.

The trick is to think how you and only you might apply some new technology. Don’t get dazzled by the bright shiny lights, just use your head – will this new thing allow me to get more done, communicate more effectively, serve better, make more money – maybe, it’s true use is hidden in your ability to give it a new twist, apply it a new way. That’s where most of the innovation magic comes from.

A case in point. A friend mentioned a new service called Twitter. I went and looked and thought, this is stupid. But then I mentioned it to my 16 year and she immediately told me why it was good. Here’s what she said, “If that’s the way I want to send and receive my information, then you should figure out how to use it.” Wow, marketing 101, with a little attitude to boot


It’s no longer enough to simply accept cash, checks, and credit cards. You’ve also got to accept mobile phones, PDAs, iPods and every other form of digital information distribution. Just think about how you can apply it to your unique situation. If the customer wins, if your people win, if you win, it’s probably a good new technology.

I’ll give another one to play with – Dapper. So, what tools have you found that might show future promise?


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  1. The browser extensions/tools I use from Web 2.0 on a regular basis, social networks/blogging tools excluded..I’ve blogged about them, and their relation to college students, quite a few times.

    Trailfire.com…(disclosure i’ve worked for them)…like del.icio.us but you can put comments directly on pages you want to come back to, and then link similar pages together

    Stumbleupon.com…one of my favorites, if only because it’s a fantastic way to kill time when you’re bored.

    Last.fm/Pandora. Last.fm at home, Pandora on the road, great music tools to find bands I didn’t know about before

    As far as social networks: facebook is king, myspace music is nice, gottabet would be fun if more people used it (I’m sure that’s true for nearly all social networks), linkedin

    Blogging tools: typepad, feedburner, mybloglog, netvibes

  2. Also, useamap.com, while I haven’t yet found a need for it, might be a useful little tool until google/microsoft 3d maps become really functional

  3. Solid post. We tell our clients all the time, internet technology/Web 2.0 is great but if it doesn’t DO anything for your business it’s totally pointless.

    It makes it easier for them when I ask them to look at their overall success online as one whole pizza pie. Then I tell them that each slice makes up a different part of their internet strategy: maybe one slice is web video, maybe another slice is blogging, another can be SEO or maybe RSS feeds. Each company has a nuanced formula because every company is different and every company’s goals are different. Whatever combination works for Company X probably won’t work for Company Y.

    And, once you get the correct pieces to your overall pie, don’t keep poking around with it! 🙂

    One of the new tools that Scott Ginsberg turned me onto is Meebo at Meebome.com. Based on our latest Virtual Lunch, Scott is getting great ROI (even though there’s little investment) from this tool. We’re trying it out as well.

  4. Australia is quite a way behind the US and Europe when it comes to PDA’s and Mobile browsing, but really this presents an opportunity for companies for when ISP’s and Mobile providers bring their prices down.

  5. ‘But then I mentioned it to my 16 year and she immediately told me why it was good. Here’s what she said, “If that’s the way I want to send and receive my information, then you should figure out how to use it.”‘

    :o) Smart kid.

    Great post. Just when I start feeling smart about some new tool, someone gives me an incredulous stare because I’ve never heard of the next one…

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