I’m a big fan of services businesses (so much so that I’d started my own!). I’m an even bigger fan of those services businesses leveraging their teams to expand beyond client services, into building its own products. It’s tough—Metalab founder Andrew Wilkinson lost $10 million doing it!—but it’s not impossible.
One great small bet can take place in the form of research. (I don’t want to use the word “content,” though it’s often the medium this research is conveyed.)
Generally, research involves collection and analysis at a breadth and depth that allows new insights to emerge. In terms of depth, this might look like my series on Slack’s copywriting, and studying how the team’s writing and design evolved.
In terms of breadth, I also love when people collect best practices and observe patterns and organize them into a really accessible structure:
- Barrel’s DTC Patterns involves “Marketing & UX insights from real purchases.” What a great idea! (Interesting business expense implications which could excite the team as well!)
- Marketing Examples by Harry Dry is another one of my favorites
- Attentive Mobile publishes its Texts We Love resource, a collection of resources for people who are considering text marketing
You could, of course, turn it all into a book (like I did with Creative Doing), which itself is another organizing structure and force.