Thursday, May 22, 2008

Swift theft.

I think I could make a living searching the web, magazines, bookstores, podcasts for cool things, adapting them a little bit (or not at all) and presenting them as ideas for my clients.

There is so much great stuff out there, and so little of it exposed on a grand scale, that it would be easy to repackage things, give them a slight connection to clients' businesses, and present them as original ideas.

Alternatively, it would be no shame to admit that the ideas weren't mine; in my experience, the act of knowing about cool stuff is at least as impressive to people as the act of coming up with it - if not more so.

In fact, I'm quickly talking myself into setting up a division dedicated entirely to harvesting cool new stuff and using it for clients.

The three key words of the philosophy would be:

1. Speed. If you're going to copy stuff, you need to copy it quickly. You need to be the first to copy it, and you need to copy it before it becomes known on a mass scale, so you can be seen to own it as far as your own audience is concerned.

2. Taste. You need to know where to look, and you need to know what is really a good idea and what isn't. In my experience, taste is easy. When you didn't have the idea in the first place, you're in a better position to judge whether it's good or not.

3. Packaging. Changing something slightly, or finding a place 'within' the idea for your business, is the killer app. You need to take something and rebrand it so you can own it, and make it look as if it came from your own business, not co-opted from somewhere else with a dubious link.

Yes. Harvest. Good word.
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