Robbie Kellman Baxter shares a tale from the trenches of subscription-based business success stories. In this episode, how a subscription business can become successful by focusing on subscriber outcomes.
Robbie Baxter: How did you come to run Instant Ink? Looking back, would you say it was inevitable? Or are you surprised at where you’ve ended up?
Anthony Napolitano: Well, I’m thrilled to where I ended up. I can’t say it was fully planned and chartered for sure. I think each of us have sometimes at our career we make a specific choice and sometimes luck just kind of falls upon you and you look back at are grateful that it happened. I think most of my career I’ve spent in what we call startup businesses inside of HP. So these are new businesses that we’re trying to grow and create. And it just so happened to be that before I joined Instant Ink, I was in another startup business inside of HP, which is quite a unique experience, is that I was there from day one until we actually shut down the business. So I was in that business for 12 years. And while it didn’t succeed in kind of a commercial sense, I learned a lot from that business. But because I had that experience, Instant Ink at the time was really only a few hundred thousand customers. And so I had this reputation of being able to grow new businesses inside of HP and I was given the opportunity to come into Instant Ink. Now we have over seven million customers worldwide.
Robbie Baxter: How many customers was that?
Anthony Napolitano: Seven million.
Robbie Baxter: Three hundred thousand to seven million.
Anthony Napolitano: That’s right. In the last five plus years.
Robbie Baxter: Wow. Now, it’s interesting to me that you’re you’re really an entrepreneur, and yet you’ve spent most of your career inside a big established company. What has that been like for you?
Key points covered include:
- Leading trend transformations
- Being the disruptor
- Cohort analysis
Read the full article or listen to the podcast, Reinventing the Razor & Razorblades Model by Focusing on Subscriber Outcomes with Anthony Napolitano of HP’s Instant Ink, on LinkedIn.
Dan Markovitz explains why using post-it notes may not be the best way to organize your workflow.
One of my clients, a physician in an academic medical center, has been struggling with her personal kanban. She avoided all the common pitfalls—she kept finished tasks in her Done column, limited her WIP, and used Super Sticky Post-It notes to ensure that she didn’t lose any work to evening janitorial services. But she wasn’t making a whole lot of progress, which left her frustrated with the kanban—it wasn’t helping her manage her work.
A closer look at the Post-Its revealed the problem: giant tasks (projects, really) that had no chance of getting finished in anything less than a few months—in her case, “Work on R-01 Grant,” “Write New Oncology Paper,” “New Patient Intake Protocol,” among others. If you were to scale a note to the size of the task written on it, these should have been about the size of a Times Square billboard, not a 3×3 Post-It.
Read the full article, Why Ping-Pong Post-It Notes are Bad for You, on the Markovitz Consulting website.