Dear Hubbers, we are in the process of thinking of Hub2.0. We want to turn our current (book writing) Hub into a platform for knowledge sharing around business model innovation. This platform would include tools, webcasts and also content from our side. However, it would be centered around your knowledge, expertise and content.
Of course the core team would need to monetize the platform to the show... How much would you be willing to pay for monthly/annually (you would first get a free trial as a present for already having joined the book writing Hub)?
What would you want/expect from such a platform and how would that influence pricing (e.g. for what would you be willing to pay more)?
Part of what I would like the Hub 2.0 to consist of is a library/database with business model examples, of course based on the canvas. It would be a great tool for analysis and inspiration.
What I also would like to find is templates, most important the canvas, but perhaps also other visualization tools. Others can perhaps help with more examples.
I am not sure what way is the best to pay for the Hub 2.0, since my thought might be that I could be willing to pay for it for some time, to get access to the library and some other stuff, but in the long run it would not be that interesting. I would possibly be interested in subscribing if I knew that there would be a constant steam of new information, but hen again I am not sure I would be willing to do that in the long run.
I think a classical freemium model could work, where for example the discussion forum should be totally free and open in order to create a community and create an interest around the book. The premium version could be access to the business model library and perhaps further discussions around new book chunks.
Hm, I am thinking while writing. Maybe the free version could include some basic movies explaining the general concepts and the premium version more in-depth analysis of different business models. Perhaps with pay-per-view or as part of the premium (subscription?).
An other way could be to have two different book options. One with access to the regular hub with a discussion forum and basic info on the book and the concepts and a premium version of the book with the more content rich hub.
But in the end, the question comes down to what you really want with the Hub 2.0; to make money on the hub, sell more books, giving lectures, establishing the canvas as the norm for business model visualization.
The willingness-to-pay-question is always funny, since the answer is always:
"ehm, well ahhh, just depends, ehm nothing to a couple of bucks..."
After reading the rough value prop of the Hub2.o above, I have the feeling it is very community driven and 2.o-ish and therefore free of charge.
I do see premium services however, and actually have a current need:
I would be very willing to pay for BMG* branded Posters or even 3M sticky flip-charts with the BM canvas drawn on it, to use for workshops and trainings (this is a need I currently have for a workshop next Wednesday at the University of St. Gallen for a course with 60 Students of the Center of Entrepreneurial Excellence).
Of course, I can create something myself and put a CreativeCommons like note on it to give credit to Authors and Community, but it would be cool to be able to use "official Hub2.o training material".
In other words can you productize some of the workshop material you are using/have developed yourself and create an e-commerce platform for it?
I can imagine to pay a yearly membership fee (USD100?) if I get "free" goodies every now and than and be able to order more if required for workshops (e.g. BMG's 9 BM Building Block Post-its, poster of the best/most creative business canvas of the year etc.).
This is interesting, why dont we use the BMG canvas itself to model this. Identify all the value propositions, cost structure for those values that are going to be created, etc. And then how can we sustain this this whole business model (Hub2.0) and the vlaue proposition for that.
We can probably start putting this into the online BMG tool or may be on google Docs or MindMaps if there are limitations to collaboration in this BMG tool.
First, I think you are asking the wrong group. This self-selected group, as great as it is, is a very small slice of those who have the potential to benefit from this knowledge and bring vitality to the Hub community. Putting up some sort of membership barrier I think hurts the cause going forward more than it helps. I don't know how many times I have inadvertently sent associates links to pages on the Hub only to have them tell me they cannot access them because they are not members. This type of thing creates a barrier to the vitality and renewal of the participants we need to have actively involved. Membership cost barriers stifle organic growth and self-organization moving into the future. How much would Twitter have grown if it started with a membership fee? So, maybe the group to be asked, not necessarily how much they would pay, but what they would pay for, are those people currently not hub members (yes, I understand the impracticality of this...). I cringe at any idea of an initial membership fee. How many people will pay to get in the door before they have a chance to experience what's behind the door?
Second, I find myself to be a fickle member of subscription services. For example, RainToday.com has some great content pertinent to my needs, but at $299 per year, I will be dropping them. They have served some needs well in the meantime. Right now I am subscribing to MarketingProfs.com for $250 per year. They are serving some current needs I have regarding social media. But as valuable as that service is to me now, that subscription price is not sustainable either. I will get what I need and move on.
Third, based on my comments above, the only way an annual subscription might be sustainable is if the Hub is an ongoing part of the Hub members revenue generation (as in consultants) or an ongoing part of their job in a business (as in a business model innovator). But I still would have the membership vitality/revitalization concern...
How about making the site free, for vitality's sake, but fund from specific value delivered like seminars, workshops, and certifications? Maybe build a group of certified business model innovators who benefit from the Hub association and support it through the fees it brings to them. And sales of practitioner materials Jasper mentioned earlier.
I'm sure there are other and better ideas, but I just wanted to share with you my initial thoughts.
In case you did not see my post, the hard copy of Business Model Generation is terrific. Many people I have shown it to are very impressed with it.
Why don't we have a virtual canvas sketching session to brainstorm models? ;)
As far as value, I would be looking for concrete case studies and examples (full cases or just sample canvases people created, for example). Perhaps a model in which members who contribute access for free or reduced amount, and for those who have not contributed resources pay a premium to get access to a database of cases. I think this could encourage more participation, rather than just passive consumption of content.
I can't put a dollar amount to this though, I think it is highly dependent on the kind of content. For a robust case study database alone, I think between $100-150 is reasonable annual due, but I feel like one would like more than that. I like the other suggestions so far.
For starters, see attached. I attempted to answer the basic business model canvas questions in slide 1 to arrive at some preliminary views on slide 2. This is more to trigger thoughts.
While the business model canvas is extremely powerful, I still believe that the Blue Ocean construct of strategy canvas that brings it all together to present As Is and To Be vis-a-vis competitors is required.
I also notice that people are looking for electronic post-its. I am using my own ndxCards- if there is a demand, we can design one for the Hub and offer it at a price. See www.ndxcards.com
One value for me would be exchange of tested tools and models, refining them as we go, wiki style.
But not so much in text - as the bigger value comes from co-creative drawing. In other words, taking our own medicine and building a living example of what we can achieve with our new toys.
A few staggered barriers to entry are fine with me, including a joining fee or monthly subscription, to see who is merely interested vs. who is involved and committed. To join, I would say, buy at least one book at retail. Monthly, for me depends on the hub's value proposition.
Besides paying legal tender to cover costs, I would like to develop ways to earn credits, a simple open-source currency.
Floating one outlandish idea - reality check, please
Imagine a tool members would like to pay for. Such as access to a set of business models for a specific industry. Price it low, but with every purchase (all sales final), raise the price by 1%. By the same ratio, adjust the commission to the tool's authors. If a week passes with zero sales, mimic the process of natural products which spoil and lower the price by 1%.
Give us ideas how you would split commission for co-created tools. They may have the best improvement over time but are hard to value, hence my dynamic pricing model above.
Looks like it's time to sketch a few business models for Hub 2.0... and compile bootstrapping tools. My electronic post-it (text-mostly) PPT tool is here.