Sunday, November 9, 2014

How to Become the Leading Regional Supplier for 'Mini' Plants?

Peperomia prostrata - 'Mini' Plant
Story # 141,

            How does any business become the dominate player in their field?

            An amazing book, Zero to One, by Peter Thiel, co-founder of PayPal has insight into this question.  He advises how to escape competition. You should have some combination of several characteristics:  proprietary technology, network effects, economies of scale and branding.

            Proprietary technology applies to hardware and software, usually protected by patents.  The technology must be at least 10 times better than its closest substitute in some important dimension.

            Can this happen with plants?

            The clearest way to make a 1000 % improvement is to invent something completely new.  Or you can radically improve an existing solution.  Once you’re 10X better, you can escape competition.

            Having the best plant product is the price of admission.  A lot of growers can grow good plants.  How to be 10X better?
            By having New plants that no one has like Primulina, Hemizygia ‘Candy Kisses’ and upright Selaginella should help, but is it 10X better?

            With truck delivery, orders can arrive in good condition without the problems of unpacking scrambled plants with cold damage.  Is this 10X better?

            I have custom plant tags with common name, botanical name, brief description and ‘Grown by Gary’s Specialty Plants’.  Established customers will have their business name as well.

            A recent order for 300 ‘Mini’ plants had an assortment of 50 different foliage and succulent plants.

            Are all of these features enough to be 10X better and be the leading regional supplier for ‘Mini’ Plants’?

            The true test is if Garden Centers try them and they sell.  Most of my customers never leave.

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