Date: Fri June 30 2000
From: Chris Noblit <>
Subject: AMS-Forum DING, DING, D-I-N-G...
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One dot-comer wrote:
>You refer to "Paying 5% to a dot com for the privilege of serving.." and I
>guarantee you that 8% commissions are going out to estimators who are
>booking jobs at a minimum of 55% discounts and better...

At this particular dot com, it appears that technology is available which will enable us to ELIMINATE THE ESTIMATOR, pay the dot com 5%, for a net savings of 3%. This is spin, it's nothing more.

Another wrote:
>...But we will be the leaders and the suggestion is to join, because if
>you don't, you'll be left in the background with all the ones that have
>joined leaving you very far behind...

Fear that one will be left behind should not be a factor in anyone's decision to join up with any particular dot com. But let me tell you what I think should be a factor; Finding a partner in a business alliance that is of benefit to both parties involved. A true partner doesn't try to scare you. And a true partner doesn't publish documents that place the industry in which you make your living in a bad light, documents such as this:

There is nothing particularly special about move bidding 'technology', in fact if you want to invest some time you can get the tools and the knowledge you need to build your own 'bid site'. Look here...

or here...

Go to

Be it ASP's, C++, JSP, Java, PHP, Perl -- or whatever mechanism is running a bid engine at any dot com -- it is not great technology, and it is certainly nothing to be afraid of.

HOWEVER, there are those out there who are working very very hard on Internet based solutions which will have the potential to change the dynamics of our industry; What a van line is, and what a van line isn't.

It will NEVER BE TOO LATE for us to form an association of independently run moving and storage service providers (WHATEVER OUR VAN LINE AFFILIATION MAY BE). Let's call it a 'unified marketing alliance' that harvests and distributes leads among the organization membership, while at the same time provides the customer with enhanced communication and Web based interactive tools that will of great value to the consumer.

We can do this tomorrow (recommended) or in two years. If we do, it will be OURSELVES who control our customers, and not some 3rd party who may put corporate profit above our best interests.

I'm ringin' the bell, but is anybody listening Bernie?

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