Researching substitutes for rubber in the early 1940s, James Wright took two very different agents – boric acid and silicone oil and combined them to form a gooey rubber like material. Working for General Electric, Wright was looking for an alternative to products made with rubber. For the first couple of years no useful product was discovered for the inorganic polymer. After sending out samples to scientists all over the globe, a sample landed in the hands of a small toy store owner. The toy store owner contacted a marketing consultant to help her market the new gooey toy in her catalog of toys. Within no time the new $2 toy became her best seller next to a 50 cent box of Crayons. Despite the success, the toy store owner dropped it from the catalog.
Seeing its huge potential, the marketing consultant, already deeply in debt, borrowed $147 to buy a batch of the putty. Packaging one ounce balls of putty into small plastic eggs priced at $1, he sold 250,000 “Silly Putty” eggs within 3 days. In 1961, Silly Putty became a global success making a huge splash in Germany, Italy, and the Netherlands. The ultimate reach of Silly Putty was landing on the Moon in 1968 courtesy of the Apollo 8 astronauts.
The characters in this story, the scientist, the small shop owner, and the marketer all made a lasting mark in American history. At a time when the economy was not at its best, each one took a risk at trying something that had never been done before. They all share the spark of entrepreneurship within their DNA.
So who do you identify with the most in the story? Are you the scientist, someone living in Tallahassee looking for ways to create what doesn’t exist but is sorely needed? Are you a Tallahassee small business owner, trying to find the most effective way to tell your unique story to the masses? Or are you the Tallahassee entrepreneur, whose passion is to find the opportunities in the marketplace and bring them to the front-page of the public?
Imagine your product or service message: Do people know how to find you? Who are your biggest fans? Can you get immediate feedback on your latest gadgets or widgets? Website visits, unique visitors, and comments are all indicators or measurements of feedback used in digital media. So why not connect them with your traditional media outlets?
Here’s one observation:
“Tallahassee.com, had more than 10.3 million page views and 565,000 unique visitors in March.” Patrick Dorsey, president and publisher of the Tallahassee Democrat.
Try searching any word plus Tallahassee in Google or Yahoo and you will surely find a search result that lists an article or blog that matches. My wife and I moved to Tallahassee in 1996 and I have never had a subscription to the local paper. Today I read the paper more than ever through Tallahassee.com. This is not a shameful plug for Tallahassee.com, rather a real world example of the evolution of the digital age we live in.
So if you are sitting back in your business or industry thinking, “I can’t wait for the good ole days to come back,” chances are they’re not. So don’t wait. Talk to someone who can help you make the jump into the digital waters. Come on in; the water’s great! Who knows you might go all the way to the Moon.com! Secret CODE: 0507