February 2, 2009

The Little Known Secret That Rafael Nadal Used to Win The 2009 Australian Open

by Praveen Rajan

Learn How You Can Use The Same Secret To Beat Your Competitors

You’ve heard the news: Rafael Nadal beat Roger Federer in an epic five-set battle to win the 2009 Australian Open. It was the longest match in the tournament’s history, lasting over 4 hours. And it was Nadal’s first victory on a hard court surface.

But what you did NOT know, is this: Nadal “baited” Federer into the five-set battle. He knew he stood a better chance of winning.

Nadal’s Secret Tactic — Know Your Competitors Inside Out

Nadal knew one thing that we did not know.

Going into this tournament final, Nadal knew that Federer had a terrible track record when it came down to stretching the match to five-sets. Federer had only won 13 out of 24 previous five-set matches, and lost 11. Nadal on the other hand, had won 11 out of 14 five-set matches — a staggering 78% winning record!

That stat alone made all the difference.

If you look back at how Nadal played his fourth set you will notice how he “gave in” after realizing that the set was a lost cause. He had already lost break points, and he knew it would be better to conserve energy to take Federer into the fifth set. And that’s what he did. He knew he stood a better chance of beating Federer in the fifth set. When it came down to the fifth set, he went all out for his break point, and he got it. He forced Federer to make more errors, and cruised to the end.

How Much Do You Know About Your Competitors?

You can easily emulate Nadal’s secret weapon in any online business. Go out and learn more about your competitors. What is it that makes them tick, and how can you beat them? It helps to have a list of your competitors strengths and weaknesses — this gives you the edge to plan for better products, and to produce better marketing campaigns that will swing customers over to you.

So go on — it’s time to think like a champ and beat your competitors online.

October 10, 2008

Give everyone access to business intelligence

by Praveen Rajan

Lesson: your business can act / react faster when all team members are aware of key trends and market conditions

When planning a marketing campaign, you need to gain insights on things like subscriber demographics and usage patterns. In most large organisations, this requires raising job orders for a database extraction team to write SQL queries. Imagine wasting 3 days just to get hold of this - a waste of precious time to market.

During my startup days at LifeLogger, we empowered everyone in the team with access to information on our performance. Dashboard reports on registrations, usage and trouble tickets. This gave everyone a sense of how we were doing on a daily basis and helped us to build relevant features for our customers.

If your marketing campaigns are driven by data, your marketing teams should be given full access to business intelligence software. Everyone should be empowered to ask or generate reports.

In large organisations, this means giving access to web-based software such as Business Objects. Drag and drop your criteria & get instant results, e.g.:

Tell me
How many people live in Kuala Lumpur
And are under the age of 18
And have purchased 2 pairs of yellow shoes over the last 3 months
Run the query
Bam!
Instant results within minutes

In summary:

  • Don’t just appoint one person to generate reports
  • Give everyone with a revenue target (KPI) access to business intelligence software
  • Web-based reporting software will speed up everyone’s ability to act / react
  • If you still rely on old-fashioned SQL scripts, fix the turnaround time to get results. Sometimes 3 days is insufficient in fast-paced markets
  • Put a lock on your customers personal information, and don’t be paranoid about the security of everything else