Creating a market force

So I’ve been asked (somewhere… can’t find it right now, so maybe one of ya’ll will remind me) if the last three paragraphs of this post by Daniel Goleman speak in some way to VRM. Here they are:

The singular force that can drive this transformation of every manmade thing for the better is neither government fiat nor the standard tactics of environmentalists, but rather radical transparency in the marketplace. If we as buyers can know the actual ecological impacts of the stuff we buy at the point of purchase, and can compare those impacts to competing products, we can make better choices. The means for such radical transparency has already launched. Software innovations now allow any of us to access a vast database about the hidden harms in whatever we are about to buy, and to do this where it matters most, at the point of purchase. As we stand in the aisle of a store, we can know which brand has the fewest chemicals of concern, or the better carbon footprint. In the Beta version of such software, you click your cell phone’s camera on a product’s bar code, and get an instant readout of how this brand compares to competitors on any of hundreds of environmental, health, or social impacts. In a planned software upgrade, that same comparison would go on automatically with whatever you buy on your credit card, and suggestions for better purchases next time you shop would routinely come your way by email.

Such transparency software converts shopping into a vote, letting us target manufacturing processes and product ingredients we want to avoid, and rewarding smarter alternatives. As enough of us apply these decision rules, market share will shift, giving companies powerful, direct data on what shoppers want — and want to avoid — in their products.

Creating a market force that continually leverages ongoing upgrades throughout the supply chain could open the door to immense business opportunities over the next several decades. We need to reinvent industry, starting with the most basic platforms in industrial chemistry and manufacturing design. And that would change every thing.

It’s certainly consistent with VRM. And the first four words of the last paragraph are exactly what we expect VRM to do.

6 Comments

  1. gregorylent says:

    the first four words … sorry it wasn’t the entire next sentence ..

  2. John Caddell says:

    Hi, Doc, I passed that comment to you the other day via Twitter (@jmcaddell). Thanks for discussing it. As someone who’s spent most of his career in B2B marketing, getting my head out of the CRM trap is very difficult!

    regards, John

  3. Doc Searls says:

    Gregory, It could also be the entire sentence. I just happened to like the scope of the first four words.

    And John, thanks for helping me remember. Here’s the tweet. And hope we help you get your head out of that trap. :-)

  4. I believe the question about Daniel Goleman’s post came from here: http://twitter.com/jmcaddell/statuses/1121142001

    Provided the “vast database about the hidden harms in whatever we are about to buy” and “instant readout of how this brand compares to competitors on any of hundreds of environmental, health, or social impacts” do not come from some ‘centralised place’.

    Of course, the idea of getting information easily, transparently and on tap about anything including my purchases is a worthwhile aim, VRM or not. :)

    Here is my, more detailed, take on it. http://www.mediainfluencer.net/2009/01/its-the-context-stupid/

  5. Oops, posted the comment, which was drafted before yours, then posted it without checking updated comments. Sorry!

  6. i found it there also http://twitter.com/jmcaddell/statuses/1121142001 as iw as scanning and reading some blogs the question i think originated from that post thats what I think . Also theres always problems occur in creating a new market force when every product purchased are not determeined

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