The Online Business Network The Online Business Network
 
Picture
9 Ways To Disrupt And "Hipmunk" An Industry
Source:   OnStartUps Blog Post by Jason L. Baptiste 

While reading  Jason Baptiste's  OnStartUps posts I was introduced to "Hipmunk" - the concept and the online business.    Below is a reprint of OnStartUps.  So what is "Hipmunk" and how can you "hipmunk"  your  industry?   

hipmunk [hip-muhnk]    1.  verb:  To bring sexiness and simplicity into an existing industry with a fresh approach that delights people.  Example:  The real estate mortgage industry really sucks.  Someone should hipmunk it.   2. noun:  Startup funded by Y Combinator that makes it easier to find flights. 

The word disruption is thrown around way too much.  It's often used to describe ideas that are not disruptive.  Recently though, I've noticed a trend of YCombinator backed startups that follow a similar theme:   Go after an industry or process that is excruciatingly painful and make it better. Sure all startups are about solving a pain point, but in the case of Hipmunk and others, the pain is chronic and unbearable.  


 
 
Picture
Source:  Feb 1, 2011 BloombergBusiness Week  Special Report
Meet the MicroWorkforce

The remote resourcing of  workers goes by many names:  outsourcing, off-shoring, crowdsourcing, the human cloud, microwork.    Outsourcing your workforce tasks and activities saves money and time.  But the real news story is that the micro workforce business is big and growing  over 8%  per year.  
 
The Bloomberg micro  workforce article reviews the process of "using the Internet to find workers around the world for short-term projects that can pay a few bucks to hundreds of dollars per hour.  The tasks might require a few minutes or a few days to complete.  Benefits to companies include finding large numbers of workers to complete projects quickly, finding niche expertise, saving money, and making better use of in-house resources. It also lets Western workers, in places with a high cost of living, compete directly with those in developing markets. For many freelancers, microwork gives them unprecedented flexibility to work almost anywhere at any time."

The Special Report includes  an interesting case study of how Pfizer structured an out-sourcing function for busy professionals, called  PfizerWorks  -  an on-demand support program to farm out  non-core tasks, such as data checking and  market research to out-sourcing companies.     

"Pfizer now lets [employees]  punt those tedious and time-consuming tasks to India with the click of a button.   PfizerWorks, launched early last year, permits some 4,000 employees to pass off parts of their job to outsiders. You might call it personal outsourcing.  With workers in India handling everything from basic market research projects to presentations,  professionals  can focus on higher-value work. "

Now that's awesome.  As a project management professional, I know that the key to high-level productivity is to delegate and schedule well defined tasks so that the PM can complete  targeted milestones quickly and efficiently.   What a great business model.  Many of these sites specialize in sourcing highly technical subject mater experts, testers, consultants, and thought leaders to assist and support your company's need to ramp up and down in a project as required by the life cycle of a project or product.


 
 
Picture
   The Sold-Out Launch Event Secrets of the Marketing Master

Launch Element 4  - Count-Down to a Cut-Off Date, Time-Sensitive Irresistible Promotion: 
During each  pre-launch campaign email, video, social network communication, webcast, and live event the joint venture partners  release a consistent message of urgency and scarcity. The marketing masters design the pre-launch time line as 14 days or less  in length and announce the limited number of spots that are available.