adamsmith RT @JohnNash Love the game. Let’s play it together. BFF
Adam Smith, Father of Capitalism, set forth in the world the greatest experiment man has ever encountered. Smithbrilliant in his understanding of true human nature. With this understanding, devised a system by which he focused the fallibility of man’s own nature to the betterment of society. This system allows for the human needs to be met while using this same nature as a mechanism for self-regulation and management.
With this said, there was an American in the 1950s who challenged the concept of “every man for himself”. John Nash, an economist and mathematician, is considered to be the “Father of Game Theory”. Nash understood how a person would react given a certain set of circumstances. He theorized a person will always make a choice that gives him either the least pain or the greatest gain given the circumstances. By understanding this, the game can be manipulated for the betterment of all of the participants.
This is somewhat esoteric, so enough of the history lessons. How does this affect us in the daily struggles of small business? How can the game be manipulated (legally) so that a better result can be gained for my business? I would propose it is the development of “synergy” around your business that will be the “game changer”.
So, how does a small business build this synergy around their establishment? I would offer that there are two ways this can be done:
1) collaborate with like competitors within your geographical area and advertise the area as the place to come for your products and
2) pull together businesses complementary to yours and promote each other in one online location. The synergy of this online “channel” will draw more customers interested in your product than you could draw on your own.
Allow me to give a couple of examples. If the five or six clothing boutiques on Elm Street would collaborate, they could develop a Twitter channel called ElmSteetBoutiques. The followers of this twitter feed would be there to see what kinds of special offers, deals or new designs are available at these stores. This will build synergy and give the impression that Elm Street is the place to shop. Having the added people shopping on Elm Street will strengthen all of the stores located there.
The second example would be; if the two bistros, the pub, the nightclub and the three retail stores on Oak Street were to cooperate, they could develop the OakStreetCommons Twitter feed. These complementary businesses, together, give Oak Street synergy. Instead of advertising and doing it all on your own, the Oak Street Commons becomes a destination with something to offer for everyone.
The combination of the greed of Adam Smith’s man with the sophistication of John Nash’s games (competition) will bring a synergy to your business that is un-deniable. See with whom you can partner your marketing efforts, to gain this synergistic effect, and grow the numbers of patrons walking past your door.
Photo by Bindaas Madhavi via Flickr.com
This post is part of the SugarTone: Sweet Business Blogging Contest.