Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Make Your Own Future - Rise Above the NOISE!

We talked about the fact that Cubify Fans are destined to be the vanguard of a massive movement of epic proportions.  Experts expect that 3D printing will be as great a Disruptive Technology as the original printing press.  Those in the field of Supply Chain Management are taking the implications very, very seriously.

Normally, we think of something "Disruptive" as a bad thing.  But, as in the case of the printing press, the word "Disruptive" simply means that it will result in completely new ways of delivering product.  It will disrupt the old ways and replace them with new ways.

Any time there is this kind of disruption, there are opportunities for creative and innovative people.

In the case of the Cubify community, there will be opportunities for designers to offer their designs to an ever growing network of 3D printer owners.  To be sure, the numbers at first will be relatively small compared to what they will be in the future.  But, wise people will recognize that gaining experience early in the game should pay big dividends in the future.

First, any design that one uploads to is probably going to be available for a long, long time.  On a personal level, at my age, I expect any items I design that fit the criteria for usefulness to be available for my entire lifetime.  And, over that lifetime, the opportunities to sell will continually grow as the number of 3D printers inevitably grows.  So, while we can't expect a huge return early on, there is some reason for optimism over the long term.

If you are a writer or software designer that has ever been fortunate enough to enjoy royalty income, you know exactly what this is like.  Royalty checks are a bit like having money fall down from the sky.  The money keeps coming even though the work that produced the royalties is long past.  It seems to show up like magic!

Bringing this back to, it means that we work on a design today and upload it.  At first, we may not see a big response because of the initial numbers of 3D printers will be relatively low as people become familiar with what they can do.  But, if we are patient and if our designs and marketing efforts are worthy enough, the income should gradually increase.

Think of what this can mean to us.  If we get sick, we could still have income.  If we lose our skills due to the ravages of age, we could still have income.  All, based on the efforts of the past where we diligently used our minds to design objects that others could use and enjoy.

It won't be true of everyone.  But, that does not mean that the opportunity is not there.

Remember that I mentioned CDBaby in the last blog article?  It is a site where any musical artist can upload their music and CDBaby facilitates making that music available through a wide variety of distribution channels.  Some artists are wildly successful.  Others barely make a blip.

Those that fail usually do so because they rely on the music or the wide distribution opportunities to sell their album.  Big mistake.  They fail to take into account the "Noise" of so many choices.  So, they fail to promote their album so that it rises above the noise.  CDBaby is NOT going to make a budding musical artist a star.  It's simply going to give one a means of fulfillment, that is delivery, of the music once it becomes known to the public.

It is up to the artist to plan how to rise above the noise and shine above the clutter.

And, the same will be true for designers that hope to sell their work on  Just as we must be creative in coming up with our designs, we must also work equally hard at being creative about helping those designs be found by standing out above the noise of, potentially, tens and hundreds of thousands of other designs.

It begins with doing little things, like creating a blog that not only highlights your own work; but, provides information of value to the broader community.  Those who give to the community will be embraced by the community.  A few other ways to help bring attention to your work are:
  • Making sure that a full description of the design and its value are included
  • Making sure that accurate and complete tags are available to search engines
  • Making sure that a hierarchy of categories precisely lets searchers drill down to your work.
We don't yet know precisely how's final categorization and classification system will work.  But, it is up to us to make sure that, where we can, WE provide the information to the search engine in a way that ensures that those looking for an object like that we've designed will find ours.  It's every bit as important as making sure the item is the best of it's kind out there.  For, it doesn't matter how good your item's design is if potential buyers can't find it.  And, the more items available on, the greater the "NOISE".

Rise above it!

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