Archive for December 13th, 2006

50th Post – Blogging How it changed the way i do business!

It takes a great pleasure to announce my 50th post. It took me almost 1 month + 1 week worth of blogging to reach this milestone. Well people celebrate 100 or 1000. Why am i celebrating 50th post. When i started this blog my idea was a diary entry of all various thoughts which never transforms into an account easily accessiable at later stages. Most of the posts are based on information/thoughts i wish should be documented based on my area of working through out the day.

Blogging has helped me achieve a lot since i took to it. This is the reason i wish to celebrate this fete. Few of the important things it helped me with

# Document research on Online Travel Reservation segment in india

# Create Strategies and share them with other bloggers to comment. Helping re-instate faith in my vision and planning capabilities.

# Reach out to new people in the industry which otherwise are hard to find and access.

#  Create a brand name for self. Help stand out from crowd.

# Realize how blogging is an effective marketing tool and how you should blog to achieve greater readership

I believe any person who feel he is a good consultant should throw some things out to public and not be afraid of loosing out edge over others in terms of specialization. As more information you share more people will become confident in your capabilities. I generally meet lot of techie turn consultants and first thing i ask is if they blog. By a blog i am able to judge a persons way of thinking and his capabilities. Which in turn could mean an opportunity for us to network if our thoughts meet or help save me his and my time. Based on queries generated from this blog i realized people like you to execute what you think and this is where creates business opportunity for consultants to use this medium effectively.

FCM Travel Solutions – Is it another Travel Management Suite ?

Just came across India based company FCM Travel solution. The company according to official website and press releases provide corporates with travel management services. The approach is a mix of software tools and personalized contact.  Their aim is to help with travel accounting and create insight for management to help save money on various travel tips.

They provide a dedicated account manager or just personalized contact services via contact center helping you find travel details based on your preferences etc. Though the idea seems very genuine but its very easy for any travel agency to model and offer to customers example

Step 1 : Create a web based software to send travel plans, view existing travel plans, provide decision support tools to take decision on basis of previous trips made etc.

Step 2:  Travel agencies already have relationship manager kind of concept where corporates are in touch with certain executive. He/she helps in planning trips based on destination and other pre-defined  corporate travel policies etc.

Step 3:  Post result back to user using the dynamic engine

Step 4: Create Account Recievable cycle from clients

Boom you have a sucessful FCM Travel solution kind of model to offer your client. You can improve on it by using Final Quadrant or Amadeus accounting systems to improve your middle office management.

Will expermient with the model by integrating it in Lets see how clients react.

Indiatimes & Vtiger new venture – CRM Review

With indiatimes taking mattle on itself to become the google for indian masses. Its taking a different route than merger and acquisation which its other counterparts in US follows. They are going on Partnership model. This is not the first time indiatimes will be trying this. Their earlier success in similar business models have been tender city. Which is pretty much the leader in online indian tenders.

The new kid on blocks are CRM and projects.We will talk about projects in our next post.– Though the ad hit the point right on providing small businesses with CRM product to manage leads etc. Once you visit site you get a clean login page asking one for signin. Fair enough but being a first time visitor no signup link. Talk about waste of advertisement spend. Anyway being a self proclaimed techie i gave it a shot with some username and password to see if it redirect me to forgot password page or some page to register. Unfortunately the system had good login authentication but no way to go further. Before i decide to close down the page i saw the link to Vtiger.

On visiting the site i realized the product was owned by Vtiger and indiatimes was running a hosted model. Now either this is a co-branding initative by indiatimes to help people discover Vtiger crm product or seriously they have a strategy for SME’s to take advantage of such product is unkown.  On vtiger site prominently we could see advertisement of zoho are very own web 2.0 product from india.  Later on further investigating Vtiger found out vtiger is another attempt by an indian company to take shot at CRM market. Though it clearly didnt indicate how this all is related to We would leave indiatimes to decide and narrate the story on what happened with December 12-13 advertisement of

Travel Portal – What can you do to decrease dependency on Airlines Booking based revenue

With news of Air Deccan getting funded by Reliance Capital and Spicejet equity picked up by Tata brought good news and showed faith in indian aviation sector. Though going forward with my earlier post on Travel portal valuations. Things still not change as if prices keep falling the way they are volumes will surely be created but the actual revenue earned in terms of percentage will also decrease.

Now we know portal managers are talking about new strategy for increasing revenue share of hotel reservations. The sale of indian hotels to indians at lower end of spectrum could only workout if they follow a strategy of e-enabling hotels across the spectrum. Well we are surely not talking about higher end 4 star hotels and above category. But the real budget category. Ways to have a go at them

# Buy room inventory like travel agents do directly from hotels. Alternatively if they are creating a b2b network of travel agents being dependent on their portal why not let them manage their inventory online with you. whereas you can access their hotel inventory making larger volumes of hotels across the nation available.

#Creating a server-client hotel management software for hotels where they if accept to use software have to make hotel inventory available online based on X% model.

#Give hotels a free product signup whereas small hotel/resorts can integrate specific to their hotel internet booking engine free of cost (% passed to travel portal also again inventory made available online).

They are couple of ideas which can help travel portals can specifically use for engaging more hotel inventory online. Next post will be on creating tour packages and marketing them effectively using portals.

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December 2006
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