Monday, August 27, 2007

What's Southwest Airlines New Strategy To Be?

I won't be answering that question in this post, but I do want to point out something I read today. In my Google Reader is the Airline Hub, a news site all things airlines. I noticed a blurb that Southwest is poised to be the number one airline in the world in passengers carried.

That means they'll beat out American Airlines the champ for the past five years. All I can think about is the impact this will have on SWA as well as the rest of the airline industry.

The no-frills, alternative airport carrier is dominating.

As Scott Ferber, co-founder of, used to say, "It's a lot hard when you're number one." When you weren't number one you always had someone else to chase after.

Congrats SWA, you're about to be number one. What's the second encore?

Top on my list is a closer airport to NYC then Islip.

Great Wallstrip on Costco

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Favorite Posts This Week

Energy Outlook -has a great post on energy conservation and how utilities could facilitate it.

MediaPost - feedback on YouTube's new video ad format.

PickTheBrain - 7 ways to become more action oriented.

Digital Thoughts @DMConfidential - Two great posts looking into the sub-prime debacle along with payday loans and credit cards. Part 2

Great BusinessWeek column on CEOs and Leadership

I'm a regular BusinessWeek reader, usually digesting a magazine during my morning gym workout.

One of my favorite columns is The Welch Way which is in every issue written by Jack and Suzy Welch.

Two pages earlier in the September 3rd edition I found Outside Shot written by Henry S. Givray. The title of his article, "When CEOs Aren't Leaders."

"The problem's roots lie in the fact that the terms "CEO" and "leader" have mistakenly become synonymous. Nothing could be further from the truth. CEOs are measured by quantitative results. Leaders are shaped and defined by character. CEOs are expected to boost sales, improve profit margins, and make money for shareholders. Leaders inspire and enable others to do excellent work and realize their potential. As a result, they build successful, enduring organizations." - Givray

Givray points out that we have lost our way at many corporations where we have hired CEOs who are not leaders. I won't get into the three easy steps Givray lays out to fix the situation thats for you to read.

Either way this is a thought provoking article for anyone in a management position. It's beyond just being a manager, it's being a leader as well.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Jonny A's got a blog

A good friend and business colleague just dropped me an email about his new blog. While there are only three posts, there's some great content. Dog fighting and sports, eating peaches and plums, as well as how to cure toe fungus with vick's vapor rub.

Jon you've been added to my RSS reader. Correction: need to fix your feed, I can't find it.

The pigs are done

Unfortunately night fell quickly, so the last photo I shot was the final product. Overall it's was a great evening, with a variety of home-made bbq sauce and fresh Hamptons produce.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Replicating the army of yellow page sales people

Google is making a smart move launching their Business Referral Representative program. The program is quite simple, you get paid as a independent contractor if you help input and verify local business listing information.

The implications of this are tremendous because as Google gathers hours of operations and category of business from which they can literally create custom trial packages of advertising for these businesses. They could even offer websites for them with templates for barbers or plumbers for example.

Imagine you're the owner of a plumbing company. You might get a letter or email from Google offering a geo-targeted package of keywords along with a hosted website that can gather all the information you need for you to help convert a new customer.

In my past exposures to the local business advertising market I noticed there is a fundamental challenge of access issue to the local businesses owner. Yellow page companies have an advantage of feet-on-the-street and a product they sell that works for many of their customers. The local YP sales representative has a personal relationship with their customer. There is a level of trust. This relationship makes up-selling additional offerings easy compared to trying to reach these customers some other way.

The local sales person knows the business, they know the hours, the geographical coverage.

With this strategy Google collects all the information in a structured format that will allow them to market in a one to one fashion to each local business in their fold. This could lead to unprecedented scale in accessing the small-medium business market.

The SMB market is hard to target and expensive. This could be a game changer.

The Family Pig Roast is On

It's time again for my in-laws family's annual pig roast. I snapped some pictures on my camera phone. Enjoy! I'm really looking forward to trying the pig cut, the "Boston Butt" which is the first picture.