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Trick or Treat 2.0

Three Children - Trick or Treat

As Halloween has just passed, I experienced a Networked Economy version of Trick or Treat which inspired me to write this post.

To set the scene, my family chose to “do” trick or treating this year. For the uninitiated, this means decorating your house with carved pumpkins, cobwebs, skulls, and other spooky paraphernalia; it also involves visiting other people’s houses for sweets/candy which, as we all know, is the real reason the children get so excited.

So off out we went on a wet, cold, dark, and windy UK evening; I was doing my finest Frankenstein impression—accompanied by two ghosts, a vampire, a witch, Beetlejuice, and the dog making a guest appearance as a pumpkin.

There are a few ground rules to the trick or treating, which the neighbourhood kids explained.

  1. Always dress the part
  2. Only trick or treat at houses which are decorated
  3. Try not to eat all the sweets before you get home

As we made our way around the neighbourhood trick or treating, the bags of sweets were not growing at a satisfactory rate for the youngsters amongst us; people were getting cold, children were getting wet – the rumour that we would be going home soon was a light at the end of the tunnel. Some houses had decorations up but were not accepting trick or treaters, others were out of sweets, some just chose not to come to the door.

The teenager amongst us (dressed as the vampire) then had a brain wave which changed our fortunes. One of her friends had “worked” a neighbouring street earlier that night and a few text messages later we had a full list of target houses to go for. Thirty minutes and a number of texts later, the sweet bag was bulging and we were choosing houses on the type of sweets with a plotted route on the way home.

In the Networked Economy world, we had accessed a network and got pre-qualified leads.

We see this story replicated in the real world when a business network is connected to multiple applications. A participant who joined for one reason (e-invoicing) grows the network and may be the recipient of new business through another related function (sourcing).

Next year some things may change, such as the costumes and participants, but one thing will not; we will make sure to send out an advanced party to qualify our pipeline so that we can maximise our sales. Welcome to Trick or Treating 2.0.

About the author
Richard Downs
Richard Downs
Director, Solutions Marketing - EMEA

Richard is responsible for all aspects of product marketing for Ariba’s on-demand invoice and payment services, discount management, and working capital optimization within EMEA. Richard brings over 12 years of sales and finance automation exper... Read More >>>

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