Here’s some advice for living in global capitalistic internet-enabled society. I’m going to tell you why to be an early adopter, and why you might be more excited about the new upcoming internet services like ZipCar. My audience might not know this because the web is still maturing, but tech companies focus on these people called early adopters because those people are who makes businesses work.
I am generally an early adopter for companies that sound ethical and like a generally good idea. I joined ZipCar because I understand that if everyone used all zipcars, we would need far fewer cars. Why? I don’t drive my current car 12 hours a day. But the zipcars here run for at least 8 hours a day, and that’s with only a few zipcar spots. Imagine if everyone bought into it – the prices would dip down lower, the cars would be more available, new services might be available such as one-way city to city trips. Rental car companies would be useless, in addition to all their damn paperwork and attempts to rip you off.
Sure, that sounds like a utopian picture. But I believe in people who are smart, and the company seems well-designed by smart people. Vibram, Costco, REI, and many other companies get my attention for similar attributes. I want all the shoes to be made by Vibram, all the camping gear to be sold at places as customer-friendly as REI, all the groceries sold at Costco where they pay their employees a living wage.
zipcar.com – cars for money on demand for limited time, one swipe of a card required, almost no paperwork, awesome.
linkedin.net – great place to interact with former coworkers you liked, and fondly remember hating former coworkers you didn’t.
rei.com – lifelong membership costs $20, slightly overpriced stuff, but superbly generous return policy and huge quarterly sales because it is a cooperative
costco.com – treats its employees amazing, generally gets healthy food, lots of awesome free samples. I might be influenced by the last overly
vibram.com – these guys make the most durable shoe-bottoms I have ever seen on a shoe.
By the way, one thing I’ve been finding about online services is that if you’re an early adopter and use websites often, they offer you a bunch of perks. Sometimes the perks are attempts to upsell, but sometimes it’s just stuff like the ability to moderate photos on OKCupid. I have now received premiere movie tickets, a bracelet, and $25 worth of booze for social networking. Oh, and 2 months free of LinkedIn premium, and a $15 credit from Google Shopping Express. I didn’t ask for anything but the premiere movie tickets, and those came by winning a twitter competition.
This stuff is only going to grow, barring massive action involving governments and the internet. So might as well jump in now. Most people like people who share and advertise content. So, be that wherever you go. Oh, and if you’re at a place where you have a profile, make your profile awesome. Staff will sometimes take notice.