Today I was visiting business partners InnoEurope and BDA in Estonia to discuss the program for next year. Estonia will launch a program around Innovation. But... It seems that the financial crisis make them hesitant to organize speeches and workshops as sponsors and participants are reluctant to spend money on innovation.
Do you think we can come up with interesting business models for them on speeches and workshops? It would be fun!
That's a tough one! We're in a recession because of a massive emotional reaction to the fact we've been lied to all along. So a successful business model would tap into that emotional response and run with it. I know of a company in Belgium who specializes since 17 years in giving financial advice to wealthy individuals (and their families). They have a pretty cool business model and in the recent year or so their business has boomed out of control.
Unfortunately I can't remember their name at this point ;-) But if I find it I'll let you know.
Great! I also explained the people that it is all about what you think yourself too... If you think people won't spend... then they won't spend...
I also thought of changing the building blocks of the regular business model. A workshop with a very low entree price but then no preparation ;-), location at partner site (partner network), shorter version (activities), pay per consumption (easyjet model), no advertising (distribution)...
I am willing to do an experiment on that, but it has to be good and it must make sense...
You are SO right... The first thing people always are thinking about is to lower the fees of the seminar or workshop or even worse.. cancel it. At least that is what I felt during the discussions... The article you referred to is interesting and it is also interesting to really come up with new business models that are financial crisis proof!
It's natural that the uncertain economic situation shifts the concerns of potential clients from innovation to more basic concerns (like the Maslow hierarchy of needs, but then for companies rather than for individuals). Now clients are more interested in cost reduction, portfolio rationalization (product portfolio, application portfolio etc) and similar concerns. Therefore you may want to develop a workshop that would specifically address these needs. For example "Business model innovation to cope with economic downturn".
Hi Ziv, It is true that this is a logical reaction... I also believe that a strong analysis and improvement of your own business model does not necessarily mean that you need to spend a lot of money... It should be just part of your going concern...
It has been quite fun to brainstorm in this forum. You question was also fun to think about, the following would be my suggestion.
You could change the business model for speeches and workshops, by not initially having physical speeches and workshops.
One of the main values of the TED conference is the devoted followership that views the talks online. This followership does not benefit from the physical conference in any meaningful way.
Instead of having a three day conference, you could organise a virtual ongoing conference. You could have compelling speakers that make the case for innovation. Around the net there are tons of brilliant people saying great stuff. The Job of InnoEurope would then be to host the conversation and promote it,
In order to generate revenue for this alternative, there are a number of different options
You could then partner with companies that benefit from innovation processes. This could be consultants, product development companies or similar. Since many companies cut down on innovation during hard times, their business will decrease. They need someone to convince companies to keep innovating and InnoEurope needs someone to pay them to convince companies to keep innovation.
By having a VIP section, like this hub. could be priced a lot higher if there is enough value
Hosting physical meet ups.
+ I bet there are a lot of other ways to generate profit for such a virtual conference.
It would a model that is very different from a traditional conference. Yet it would essentially be delivering the same value proposition.