There is Still Honor in Business. $27,000 Says So.

Itamar Cohen, Owner and CEO at ZIPIT

Two and a half years ago All Inclusive Marketing helped a client called ZipIt Zipper Bags with an integrated online marketing plan and digital integrations. They hired us to optimize their website, increase conversions, perform affiliate marketing and search marketing duties, and naturally, we put several of our best people on the job.

A few months into the contract and after having several delays in payment from the client with promises of “the money is coming next week” we got ourselves into a big hole. We paid our team on time and in full, not expecting that one day several months in, ZipIt Zipper Bags would just disappear and back out completely…

When you’re a start up this is a really hard and expensive lesson to learn. We took great care of our team and their account, but didn’t receive a cent in return and went $27,000 into a hole in the process of doing what we thought was right.

As it turns out, there were two different partners and a strange legal arrangement between the owners of ZipIt. One owner had rights over the online store under one legal name, and the other over the offline distribution and sales. The owner of the offline sales and distribution, Itamar Cohen, had no idea that our team was $27K in a hole because of the other owner’s dishonesty and poor money management.

Through a legal battle of their own, they parted ways and Itamar Cohen got ownership of the whole company, including the online store, and promised to honor what was due and pay it back in full, no matter how long it took, even though we didn’t have the contract with him. He gave us his word.

To many people in business, a person’s word doesn’t go very far, but week after week Itamar called to update us on his progress, on his finances, shared his online sales stats so we could see how they were progressing (naturally we weren’t touching this account anymore at this point). Some weeks he couldn’t pay anything. Some weeks he’d send $500 or $700.

It’s been two and a half years since we lost $27,000 on a client we wanted to help. Two and a half years later, and just as he promised, Itamar Cohen has paid back every penny owned, even though it was not him we had the direct contract with. He proved that honor does still exist in business and a man’s word can still be worth something at the highest level of corporate promises, contracts aside.

I have the utmost respect for this man, who did what was right, even though legally, he didn’t have to. It’s great to know ZipIt is now entirely under the care of a man who understands true business sense and takes great care of those around him. It’s leaders like this who make the greatest companies.

Itamar Cohen, CEO of ZipIt, receives my medal of honor in business this year hands down.

What is The Future of Wearable Technology?

Google Glass - What is Wearable TechnologyYou may already have heard the term “wearable technology” already, if not, prepare for the torrent. It’s on the verge of becoming an integral part of our lives. What is it? It’s a broad term that refers to technology that can be worn as clothing or an accessory that incorporates advanced technologies.

The technical term for wearable tech is “Augmented Reality”. For the rest of us it simply means technology that fits seamlessly into our lives in a form that we are already familiar with like eyewear, contact lenses (yes, I’m not kidding), a watch, a wristband, clothing, jewelry or an accessory.

Is this for me you ask? Well, I believe that there will be one or several devices that will resonate with you. Why Not? Think of everyday applications where you normally turn to your smartphone, tablet, laptop or a single purpose device and re-imagine them as part of something you already wear.

 

Say, for example, your goal is to shed a few pounds. You can turn to a simple wristband like Nike+ Fuelband that incorporates an accelerometer that measures your movement and converts it into calories burned. You set your daily goal, put it on and it tracks your activity which you can see on the band’s display along with distance travelled and the time. Your smartphone will give you more data so that you can track your progress over time.

 

How about something that all smartphone users can use: a convenient way to charge your phone during the day. “Power Pocket”, a prototype uses body heat to generate an electrical current that will charge your phone. Surely it makes sense to slip your phone into your back pocket to charge it rather than duck into a coffee shop to try to find that coveted outlet where you have to sit around and wait for it to get some juice?

 

Some of us still wear a watch that will tell the time and may have additional functionality such as a calendar, lap timer, interval timer and an alarm. Take that a step further by adding Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity and a more advanced computer that will enable it to run mobile apps, communicate messages, record or playback sound, take, or show a photo and video and you start to see the potential. The memory could be stored in the form of a removable SD card that we already use in cameras. Push it even further and add in GPS, a heart rate monitor, a way to view your social media, make a phone call via an app, tether it to your smartphone and you see the departure from a simple timepiece to a wearable technology with an abundance of useful applications.

 

Now imagine a pair of glasses that can take a photo by tapping the arm or simply telling it to “take a photo”, record a video, send a message, share what you see, get directions, ask for a translation or to ask Google anything… all while remaining hands-free. Google is in the process of developing a prototype called Google Glass Explorer Edition which will do all these things and likely much more when it becomes commercially available in 2014. Have I grabbed your attention yet? No, here’s a video that will show you a really fun everyday use for Google Glass in under three minutes: http://youtu.be/O9aNzzWv_iM

 

Photo Credits: Google Glass

Record Video from your Google Glass

Record Video from Google Glass

 

Talk to friends on video with Google Glass

Talk to friends on video with Google Glass

Google Glass GPS

Never get lost again with Google Glass GPS

Check flight times with Google Glass

Check flight times with Google Glass

Google Glass in Color

Google Glass Hardware – Five color options.

The potential applications for wearable tech are remarkable. We have become so attached to our current devices that it looks like a reasonable assumption to make that we’ll be wearing them soon. Of course we are so used to outstanding industrial design from companies like Apple that these new prototypes will have to undergo a serious makeover before we’re all salivating at the prospect of owning one or more of these devices.

 

In the meantime entrepreneurs, engineers, investors, visionaries, designers and developers around the globe are engaged in exploring the potential uses in healthcare, wellness, lifestyle, computing, communication, security, safety and fashion. Analysts predict that wearable technologies will be a monumental $30-50 billion market within the next five years.

 

Visiongain forecasts that the market will already be as large as $4.6 billion by the end of this year.

 

Useful links:
What is Google Glass
What is Scope
What is Seebright
What is Innovega
What is Glass Up
What is Pebble
What is Sourcebits
What is Investopedia

 

Conferences:

 

Now for the pressing question. How do you think wearable technology will affect the future of digital marketing?

 

Content Credit: Aftaab Gulam, Wearable Technology Specialist

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