Today is a Free day! Alex Osterwalder posted his book chunk about Free as a Business Model on the Hub. What is actually a free business model? As Alex describes it is a “business model where at least one customer segment is able to continuously benefit from a free offer. It usually financed by another part of the business model or another customer segment.” The chunk describes great examples on Advertising (Metro), Freemium (Flickr, Skype, Insurance!) and the Bait and Hook model. You can find out more on our Business Model Hub. At the moment we are working with more than 350 members from 44 countries and we have 10 more chunks to go…
Peter Froberg – one of our members on the Hub – from Denmark introduced a great example on a Free Business Model: Freemium on his blog: Flat World Knowledge. Actually a model that looks interesting. Something we would have loved when we were students. Look at the movie of Flat World Knowledge. (sorry, I could not plug it in here).
But what is free actually? Free does not represent any value, does it? Nothing is for free… In the end someone has to pay… Either the client (a segment) or the advertiser or the government.
Striking is that Tata introduced a new car… The Tata Nano. It was first introduced on the Auto Expo (Jan 2008). A cheap, basic designed and environmental friendly car (very economical) . The car will be on sales on July 2009. But is this business model innovation? What do you think? Yes, making cars available for everyone… Same as India did with the public transport 😉
Yes, I think they use cheap labor, they produce for the local market (India) and… the distribute through Internet. You can buy your Tata Nano Online here. Online? Yes, as the options are limited (color of the car only), Internet suits as a distribution channel here.
See here a video on this topic.. thx to Innovation Management.
The Business Model Knowledge Fair and Book Launch Party on June 19 2009 in Amsterdam (register now for early-bird rate) is coming. There are still some chunks to be delivered… for thebusiness model book, but I’m really looking forward to the event. It will be a special day where we have working sessions around the book content and share knowledge and experience with business model practitioners! It will be a unique and particular event and you will get a limited special launch edition of the book.
As a reader of my blog you get a special discount off the entry price. I offer you a nice 10% (discount registration code: “bizmodelblog10”).
Please note our presentation enclosed here won the “best presentation of the day by slideshare”!
publishers and newspapers have a hard time facing advertising income going down… Niche players – the new family/small businesses – finance their websites – and family – with advertising income. A great video on the Long Tail… Njoy.
Alphons Geerlings – founder of De Merkplaats (“the brand bay”) – opened my eyes with his remarkable business model. “It is simple” he says. “If I go to a restaurant – btw we go to Van Harte a lot – , I know exactly what I need to pay. “ And that is exactly the way his business works. “We are very transparent in our costs although we are a servicing and consulting company. The services incl. prices for a quick scan, registration and support are presented in their first email and client contact.” What is interesting is that De Merkplaats can manage everything through email and phone. No meetings required. “And if you insist to drop by, we charge you an hourly fee.” For issues around trademarks – such as ‘stealing’ URL’s – Alphons charges a fixed rate based on some hours of work. “I ensure my clients we fix it in this amount of time.
“But what about YOUR business model Patrick? Can you tell me exactly what you do and what you will deliver in a half-day session? What can I tell my clients?”. “Wow Alphons, I am suppose to be the business modeler here” I said thinking about what to answer. “I facilitate a session, help clients with business plans, financial modeling and implement their new models.” “Interesting” Alphons said “but as a client I only want to pay for a short session”… Very interesting thought… “A kind of Easyjet model where you pay for a standard service (the flight) and pay more for additional services.
Inspiration for new models in consulting? His easy and transparent model makes me also think of new models for the consulting industry. Working with fixed prices for standard services such as a workshop, a phonecall, a presentation and so on. Different rates if you want to drop by at their office. But that requires a huge turn around of their current model. Mmm… interesting new opportunities.
Trading brands… And Alphons continues his journey. He sees clients want more and more services. “My clients are interested not only in registration and protection of their trademarks, but also to come up with new brands.” He helps them developing, buying and selling their brands. Some companies have registered trademarks in their safe while other companies are desperately looking for registered trademarks. It is a new service and it is very enjoyable. It IS actually a becoming a Merkplaats or Brand Bay now…
CC proof – a new global product. Last week we did a session on business modeling with the Merkplaats/CCProof team Kim Zuijderwijk, Mirjam Mollema and and CCProof ambassadors at the beautiful channel house of De Merkplaats in Amsterdam. With CC Proof you can now easily register your ideas and concepts in writing or visualized digitally. No need to hire a notary, lawyer or go to the tax authorities. But there is more… You can also submit your idea for review by third parties eg. TV production companies, Advertising agencies and so on. Or… CC Proof can also support you in developing your idea.
We put the Business Model Canvas on the wall and started to brainstorm. Who are our clients? What is the channel we use? Who are our strategic partners? What are additional services? Carel Alberts walked during our brainstorm and connected the post-its to the central issues we need to address. He also helped me facilitating. “I have been teaching the whole day and I know this model and especially how to make the team do the talking” 😉 Result of the workshop is an action plan, monthly sessions @ CC Proof office and… you can book Business Model 4 hour sessions with a transparent and fixed price at the beautiful gracht/channel house of Alphons.
This weekend I had a business modeling sessions with Niels and Ulbe Spaans and Erik Clignett. They just started their a film & communication company Fisheye. The new business model what they will introduce in May is amazing. It is a complete new model in the communication industry. More news on my blog soon…
Our session took place in Konigsleiten, a beautiful small village in the Austrian mountains close to Gerlos. We spend some time on the slope as part of our program. Wonderful. There we saw a great tool on the terrace while we had a drink (see picture). A camera, a touchscreen.. in the corner of the terrace. And a line up of people. What is it about? You could make a picture for free and send it to your friends over email. Really cool! Ain’t that a nice system for your company/bar to advertise for free? See the results – in the second picture – the email that you will receive. It is a picture accompanied with a URL of the ski resort.