Through travel, I've had the rare opportunity to view businesses, entrepreneurs and work forces from many different industries to watch how things are shaping up and changing. From E-Health in Pharmacies, to RealEstate, Mortgage Banking and Wealth Management -every industry is shifting to become more closely connected. As our world continues to connect, pushing the envelope for change and challenges; there is little question that we continue to push the boundaries of how we become connected. Each of us is driving this change every day when we set up or manage our Linked-In or Facebook pages. Or when we create a membership on the Realestock.com portal or run searches for the tools for the businesses we run, represent, or are thinking of starting.
This begs the questions, How connected are you really? How do you get and stay connected 4 real?
At CMAEON - the Connected Market Enterprise On Demand, we are celebrating our ten year anniversary this year. The first five years were about finding out how we might build a platform to provide better tools for the connections that were evolving through the web, during the early convergence of technology, media and communications. These tools would bridge the giant gap between integration of consumer information, education, communication and demands as well as businesses providing services and products. Our mission was to discover how people and the technology they use could best interface with buyers and seekers in the market place, in order to have them truly connect for a complex transaction such as purchasing a home, taking out a mortgage or finding a new pharmaceutical.
Businesses have struggled with the "amount" of information they have on each customer and what they should be providing. On the other side, customers, patients and investors have struggled to get the information they need; when they need it -and the answers they expect, want and deserve.
During our first five years in business, we brainstormed about the "Connection Dilemma". Then, with the Connected Market Space and Convergent Media Network model in mind, we began to build the systems.
Over the past five years, we've perfected The Connected Market Space Platform to allow buyers and sellers to Connect 4 Real. We have identified three (3) founding principles that apply to any buyer to seller connection â€“ before a transaction takes place. We have identified how to create these connections online, where previously it had been largely an "off-line" activity.
What do connections look like in an "off-line" world? Almost all of us have made them and to some degree, still do.
If we're sick, we make an appointment and go see a doctor. Or we hop in our car and go to the pharmacy.
If we're looking to buy a new house, we jump into our cars or our real estate agents" cars and go looking for a new house.
For our mortgages or wealth management, we go on- line to check out stock and bond prices, mutual fund options and legal structures that might fit our situation. We might eventually sit down with our financial planner, stock broker or banker, or schedule a call with them. But we have a clear idea in our minds about what we want and need to do first.
Here's what the Connected Market Space looks like today:
Now, before we go to the doctor, we do a search on a search engine, find some sites, and we learn more than ".. perhaps the doctor knows".., as quoted by a physician friend of mine this weekend.
We will shop to find out how much our medications will cost (especially if we have to pay out -of-pocket) - and which ones have had the best results for our condition. hen, we'll talk to a pharmacist - either by phone, email or through a web portal. We might go to the pharmacy - but lets' face it, we don't expect to get much more than a long wait in line in front of the pharmacy counter!
There are dozens of other examples that have been a part of life in the "off-line" world that have shifted to converge online involving the web of information and the people behind the services we use and buy. So what is the solution the Connected Market Space provides? It is a Real Time interaction and the ability of businesses to connect with the information they have to better answer the on-demand needs of their markets. And it is the connection of buyers, customers and patients in the market to pull that information, in any form they want, from those businesses.
Sounds easy? Not so fast. Have you ever found a web site that had great pictures and even good information but you couldn't instantly connect; even if you found it? Or if you did find a contact screen, but your requests went unanswered for days and days? This is because web sites were originally designed as flat electronic brochures. With the exception of moving images and some video, little has changed.
Part 2 of Tim's Getting Connected4 'Real' series will be posted shortly