Let's bring together what we know or can learn today about what your audience wants and needs. Then, let's find new ways to apply this knowledge toward reaching your goals.



 

 

Innovations

Comnective, Inc.
The Opportunity

Many of my friends with small companies suffered from poor service for their communications and technology needs mainly because they weren't a big enough ticket for corporate account executives.

The Idea

Why couldn't I use my skills, training and contacts to meet their needs, cheaper and better? This question shaped my business model.

The Action

I planned and started my company, ; branded it as the place "where communications and technology meet;" engaged a network of independent subcontractors; established partnerships with other service providers and marketed my concept to under-served small businesses.

The Results

Comnective became profitable after its third month by successfully creating demand and meeting the needs of the niche market I envisioned.

 

The Charter Foundation
The Opportunity

Two friends contracted with me for help to make charter schools viable education alternatives. In learning about and becoming committed to the issue, it became apparent that there were three major roadblocks facing people interested in starting charter schools: A lack of start-up funds, insufficient information and strong resistance from many Florida school boards.

The Idea

I envisioned a non-profit charter school "clearing house" that would provide start up funding, create and distribute accurate information while garnering grassroots public and media support to weaken school board intransigence.

The Action

I created a powerful business plan, attractive prospectus and "set the facts straight" media kits. Armed with good ideas backed by effective documentation I worked with my friends to assemble a high-profile board of directors, solicit friendly foundations and establish media credibility.

The Results

The buzz I established for the foundation helped secure initial funding from the James Madison Institute. The Charter Foundation was successful in breaking down barriers and helping several groups start charter schools.

 

Imperial Point Medical Center
The Opportunity

The hospital had not leveraged the information at its disposal to target opportunities to increase inpatient admission market share from physician practices within its service area. Decisions on which physicians to cultivate were made by gut instinct rather than empirical evidence.

The Idea

From my previous analyses of voter behavior, I knew that recent past behavior is a good indicator of immediate future behavior. Why couldn't I create a way to apply political campaign analysis techniques to this new challenge?

The Action

I used state-provided historical admissions data to develop a detailed profile of physician admitting patterns; this helped me identify which doctors could, and which could not, be persuaded to direct more of their admissions to my hospital. I convinced hospital administrators to use the resulting "opportunity list" to target in our personal marketing efforts for the year.

The Results

Marketers at my group of hospitals, the North Broward Hospital District, were judged and compensated based upon the success of their efforts to attract new business. My hospital had an unprecedented increase of new admissions and I earned the largest bonuses ever awarded to a marketer at the district.

 

American Cancer Society

The Opportunity

When I became Income Development Director for the Broward County Unit in 1985, it was not meeting its fundraising goals. The executive director gave me free creative reign to find new revenue sources.

The Ft. Lauderdale City Commission had decided to do something about the out-of-control nature of its annual Spring Break activities. News reports indicated city leaders were considering limiting corporate promotional events, which contributed to the perceived mayhem, to a small park on the beach and having the parks department manage marketer participation. But there would be problems covering the costs; corporate marketers would surely balk at the necessarily large user fees.

The Idea

Having worked on these very promotions myself a few years earlier, I understood the processes. Why couldn't the Cancer Society become an intermediary between the city and the sponsors? This would allow the sponsors to give tax-deductible contributions instead of paying user fees. Our volunteers could perform many of the tasks that the city's recreation department would normally have to handle.

The Action

Have you ever seen 26 college kids get into a Yugo?

Armed with a concept based on the "silly olympics" I had managed earlier, I got approval from my executive director and fundraising committee. Then I sold the city on my plan, convinced a local radio station to do its morning show as a live-remote throughout spring break and signed up several corporate sponsors.

The "ACS Spring Break Games" were born.

The Results

The event not only garnered important new dollars for the Broward County Unit, it also helped meet its annual educational goals. Every participating college student was provided with skin cancer prevention literature and advice from Cancer Society volunteers. The event was nominated for a national award for innovation.

Both the event and the daily publicity helped The Broward County Unit of the American Cancer Society to its record-setting 31% increase in fundraising that year.