Recently I was heading through MIT on my way to another enlightening Prof. Henry Jenkins soiree, when I was pleased to bump into Bob Metcalf. You may know him as the inventor of Ethernet at 3Com, Metcalf's Law, the hardest working guy in Tech, or any of his wry quotes ("Invention is a flower. Innovation is a weed.").
As we caught up I was reminded of my favorite sales story from Bob.
It goes like this...
Picture Bob hosting an MIT reception in his beautiful Back Bay brownstone, surrounded by adoring tech students. They all bring the same comments... technology leads the company... build it and they will come... we are the answer.
Bob, always the bearer of hard truth without sugar-coating, bursts their bubble by telling them that the key way that his Ethernet products at 3Com succeeded was by SELLING IT company to company until it became the standard!
I love that story.
Here is another (new) one:
A few nights ago was David Beisel's Web Innovator's Group Dinner. I was asked to present on Widgets and advertising. This was a hot conversation about a Net space that is heating up! Mostly because widgets are evolving from complex, legacy database integrated "Branded Desktop Application" to nimble and light Widgets or badges that are easy to create and tie into ubiquitous RSS feeds - then distribute anywhere on any web page.
Smart advertisers are obviously riding this wave. Empower viral distribution of user-customized (and cleverly Branded) content.
There on the right are some examples we are testing >>
A nice Widget definition is here at my beloved Webopedia
Give me a call at 617-331-7852 if you want to discuss how you can take advantage of this powerful new (and easy) content distribution concept.
Go here to see the event description at WebInno.
Some attendees in the conversation: David Beisel from Venrock (of course), Eric Gerritsen, Erik Sebesta, Gary Elliott, Jeff Feldgoise, John Norman, Matt Gross, Mike Ford, Peter Glyman, Scott Ward, Phil Costa, Scott Loring, Jon Radoff, and Mike Tyrrell (General Partner at Venrock)