Larry Page on Competitors

On Wednesday, Businessweek published a rare candid interview with Google CEO Larry Page.  My favorite quote is in the last paragraph: For a lot of companies, it’s useful for them to feel like they have an obvious competitor and to rally around that. I personally believe that it’s better to shoot higher. You don’t want to be looking at your competitors. You want to be looking at what’s possible and how to make the world better. Now, in context of the previous questions, he was… Continue reading


What About Competitors?

Whenever I give a talk to college students, I always get asked about our competitors.  How do we follow what they do?  How do we react to what they do?  What do we do to protect ourselves from them? The answer is pretty simple: we don’t. I’m of the opinion that business do not fail because of anything that their competition does or doesn’t do.  They fail because of what they do or don’t do.  The second you start focusing on your competition is the… Continue reading


Amazon Let’s Us Pay Them to Grow

In my continuing efforts to prepare for the holidays, I’ve spent the last few weeks reviewing and improving our product listings in our Amazon Seller Central account.  We sell on Amazon under the Tastefully Driven name. We list almost everything that’s up on the TD website, but the majority of what we actually sell is either fitness equipment or detailing supplies. I automated a few of the mundane tasks, added new products (which involved building a bridge to easily migrate products from DI to TD… Continue reading


The People that Ruin Blogging for Me

A few weeks back Nev wrote a post asking for feedback from his readers about his blog and himself in general.  In the comments someone mentioned that they wished he would post more about his e-commerce site, House of Rave. He responded: I sincerely wish I could post more about House Of Rave since I love writing about it. I’ve refrained quite a lot to reveal less to competitors and avoid copycats. There is a DIRECT correlation between how much I write about my business… Continue reading


Understanding Competitive Advantages

Compared to our e-commerce auto detailing competitors, we have a lot of competitive disadvantages:  less space, less available cash, less employees, and less control over vendors and distribution.  It can be frustrating and intimidating when entering a new industry.  The incumbents will try to use those things to crush you (or at least make your life more difficult). From the beginning we’ve been about finding different things that turn the tables and give us the advantages.  We don’t want to play their game – we’ll… Continue reading


’08 Grade, ’09 Goal

While I was working on the time line the other night I began to notice that I wasn’t all that happy with what I accomplished for the business in ’08.  Don’t get me wrong – we had a great year and I was super excited to see the growth laid out in numbers during our ’08 company review this afternoon.  I’m very very happy, content, and proud at what we achieved as a business.  Our goal was to double in revenue from ’07.  Instead, we… Continue reading