Monthly Archive for August, 2004

Defining Yield Management

At the office, I’m having to define “Yield Management” as a business model.

I found a few good resources on the web by searching Google, and this Google Answer was a big help.

I found a lot of different definintions, and this is the simplest one I could find:

Yield Management is extracting the maximum amount of revenue from a fixed quantity of perishable goods and/or services.

These other definitions weren’t bad, and I want to remember them as well:

Yield Management – A pricing model that aims to maximize the yield to the seller by charging buyers different prices according to the value they place on the purchase. Also known as Value Pricing. This is common in airline ticket pricing as business travelers have less elastic demand for tickets than leisure travelers and hence will pay higher prices for the same ticket.

Yield Management – Based on real-time demand forecasting by market micro-segment and an optimization model, Yield Management (also known as “Revenue Management” or “Real-time pricing”) is an economic technique to calculate the best pricing policy for optimizing profits generated by the sale of a product or service, based on real-time modeling and forecasting of demand behavior per market micro-segment.

Academic Definition:
“systems & procedures to maximize results from the sale of a product or service in more or less fixed supply whose revenue producing ability diminishes with time.” Dr. Warren Lieberman of Veritech Solutions Inc.

Conceptual Definition:
“Revenue Management is the art and science of predicting real-time customer demand at the micromarket level and optmizing the price and availability of products.” — Robert G. Cross, Author of “Revenue Management – Hard-Core Tactics for Market Domination”

Simple Definition:
Revenue Management means selling the right advertising space to the right advertiser at the right time for the right price and the right length of time.

In my mind, yield management is an important concept in sales of a limited inventory of products, and should be practiced if you sell anything that’s limited in availability. Others, such as American Airlines, have proved that yield management can greatly contribute to the bottom line of an organization. (Yield management earned them $1.4 Billion between 1989 and 1991) when they pioneered the technology.

Yield management techniques in pricing online advertising space can greatly increase the profits of online publishers by creativing demand, sustaining value, and growing profit, if applied correctly.

Advice on Friendship

Good advice:

“Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence. True friendship is a plant of slow growth, and must undergo and withstand the shocks of adversity before it is entitled to the appellation.”
George Washington

Where’d BugMeNot.com Go?

Has anyone seen BugMeNot.com? Adrian wrote about it a month ago, so I know I’m not dreaming that it existed. I even used it to get into a few registration-only websites, but it totally disappeared a couple of days ago, and now looks like this:

Any thoughts on what’s up?

My Philosophy on Sales [People]

This is how I look at the profession of sales and sales people and life in general:

Everyone on this planet is a sales person.

I firmly believe that this world is driven forward by the actions of good sales people, selling their product, be that product themselves, their ideas, or a tangible product or service.

All of us are sales people, but some of us are better than others. Some of us have more passion for sales than others. Some of us have better products than others. Some of us can deliver our passion for our products better than others.

The better sales person out there… is the mid-level manager that pushes a new idea to his boss, so that his department can be more successful.

The better sales person out there… is the guy that gets angel funding for the next ‘great idea’ for a business, regardless of what that idea is.

The better sales person out there… is the young woman that lands her dream job right out of college.

The better sales person out there… is the stay-at-home mom that gets her kids to ‘just be quiet for a moment’ so she can take care of the family finances more easily.

The better sales person out there… is the single dad of two who talks his boss into sponsoring his kids’ soccer team for the season.

The better sales person out there… is the sales guy that determines his customers needs before pitching a product to his customer.

Each of us are sales people, regardless of our title or role in an organization (and some of us are better than others).

If you think of every little interaction you have with others as an opportunity to sell that other person on your idea, your product, or yourself, you’ll like be more successful in life, no matter what you are selling or what you consider success. Becoming a better sales person is something all of us should strive for.

K-Mart commercials on TV

I just wanted to point out how funny it was to watch K-Mart commercials when you live in a market where there are no K-Marts anymore. It’s just funny. About a year ago K-Mart pulled completely out of Austin, TX. The closest K-Mart to my house is 1 hour and 20 minutes away. Why are they advertising on TV here in Austin?

No wonder the idiots went bankrupt once already. Buying network Television advertising when you’re not in enough markets to capitalize on the efficiency you supposefly get by buying network TV.

Scott Johnson is engaged

Wow! Scott Johnson (of feedster.com, fuzzyblog, and other infamous times and places) is engaged to Shelley Johnston.

What great news! Congrats Scott.

First Day of Golf

Today, I swung a golf club for the first time in my life.

A buddy of mine, Kevin, and I met at the Hank Hankey Golf Ranch of Austin tonight. Kevin asked me earlier in the day if I golfed, to which I replied “no” and he asked me to hit the driving range with him tonight. I figured “why the heck not?”

So, we met around 7:45, and rented a large bucket of little white golf balls for $13.00. There were about 100, maybe 150 balls in the bucket.

The section of the driving range set aside for drivers was pretty full, so we headed over to the side that’s set aside for irons, and I got my first lessons from a buddy.

The first advice Kevin gave me was typical Kevin: “You wanna know what the first thing you need to know about your golf swing is? Just try to look cool!”

I laughed.

Kevin said “No, I’m serious. It sounds stupid, but try to look cool, and relaxed. Don’t get too tight, be conscious of the fact that you look cool doing this, and you won’t feel so silly making the small adjustments I’ll tell you to make throughout tonight.”

So, I took his advice. And I hit my first ball with a 3 iron.

It went pretty far (I think) but sliced way to the right … waaaaay to the right.

Kevin was just impressed I hit the ball.

We both nailed about 100 little white balls down the driving range with irons before heading over to the side for the drivers. Then we polished off the rest of the balls before retiring to our vehicles to polish off a beer.

It was a lot of fun and I’m really looking forward to my future golf game. It can only get better from here.

golf ball

Accomplished (Cleaning out my Inbox)

I did it. I cleaned out my Outlook Inbox today (well mostly). (Back in April I had 700+ emails in my inbox.)

I’m now down to 78 email messages in my inbox, all of them requiring some sort of follow up or action from me. A few from more than 30 days ago, but most of them fairly recent.

How did I get there?

1. I downloaded and installed Lookout. Definitely needed to install this, so I felt safe finally clearing out my inbox. Lookout is a fantastic Outlook search plugin/enhancement thingy.

2. Starting deleting shit. And sorting important stuff away… All kinds of stuff was organized away. I deleted anything that didn’t require action on my part, and didn’t reference a client. I sorted away emails from my boss, sorted away things I just didn’t need cluttering up my inbox, and got rid of anything I didn’t need to be able to find tomorrow in my inbox. Honestly with Lookout, it’s easier to find emails by searching globally than it ever was to keep them sitting in my inbox.

Now the big question: Can I keep my inbox under 100 emails for longer than a week?

(It’s a sad day when cleaning out your Outlook Inbox can make you feel accomplished.)

updated 8/10: … down to 26 items in my inbox this morning … feels good.