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EXECUTION Primary vendor raising its costs by 150% forces innovation (command of Control)

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Drive2Riches

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Over the next few weeks, I'm going to be looking around for how I can eliminate my reliance on this particular vendor. For about three years, the service they provided me with has been a perfect fit for my system, a perfect cog in my business wheel.

They wrote that they're raising my cost per unit by 150% because "it will be better for customers" and because they want to be making "more investments in our artificial intelligence technology."

No. It works well for me as-is. I can think of NO "improvement" anyone can make that's worth more than 2X of what I'm paying now. In my opinion, many customers currently using the service will flee, like me. It's a risk for the vendor, but maybe I'm not the kind of customer they intended to keep. They're a digital services commodity. I'm going elsewhere.

Use case: The benefit I'm getting from this vendor is their web interface, ease of use, payment system, customer service, and brand reliability. As an example, something that today costs me $12.00 per instance will instead cost me $30.00 after the increase. So then it becomes UNSUSTAINABLE, and I'd rather do without the perks for that price.

I will be (1) shopping around for the exact same service, and (2) creating (coding) a system that invokes AI instances on its own (whether AWS / Google / Azure) thus putting more control into my own hands for the long term.

I will post updates with anything interesting that happens during this transition.

Questions:
Have you had a cost increase that forced you to retool? What did you do?
How did you reduce reliance on your digital vendors?
Did you take things offline and put into your own hands? (Or the reverse?)
Do you use AI to save costs?
 

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Drive2Riches

Drive2Riches

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UPDATE: In ten days I've written 300 lines of code that get all the results I need.

The expense is going from, for example, a vendor cost of $12 (or $30 after the 150% rise) to $3 per instance using my new solution -- a fraction of the vendor's cost.

This code includes three new features that I had to do separately anyway. As I build, there will be more components that I will be adding.

My new plan is to polish the code, create a desktop app and make it available to scale. First I need to create the app for myself in Windows and then make it cross-platform to Mac for my business partner.

For the first time, I'm able to see clearly the opportunity I have for creating a scalable SaaS solution.
 
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Drive2Riches

Drive2Riches

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NEW APPROACH? Given that I know fairly well what this app will look like, and what it can do for people, I am wondering...

Maybe I might want to start selling it immediately, even before I have a working model for my own use. At the current pace, no more than a month or two to completion for my personal use.

What I mean is...
  • Do I now begin working on making a landing page and CTA for $ ?
  • Do I now begin working on research about competition? (this app is being built either way)
  • Do I now begin the process of marketing in terms of describing a problem that I will soon solve?
  • Do I now create various how-to videos as an expert in the field?
  • Do I now find help with fixing my LinkedIn, and building some kind of credible online persona?
So, should I get these threads going or not? They're all going to play a part in this, so why put it off? Other than, of course, being busy focusing on building the app itself.
 
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Drive2Riches

Drive2Riches

Bronze Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
I've Read UNSCRIPTED
Speedway Pass
Jul 18, 2014
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Washington
UPDATE: 12 days later the app is done. It is now useful and successfully replaces the previous system I had to work with. Number one goal was to make something useful and I've accomplished that. It is visually unappealing with no cosmetic additions. But 100% functional. Good enough is better than perfect.

Next steps are hazy, not clear. The learning is daunting. I'm searching for the next conceptual dot along the way so that I can connect to it. I don't see a clear path between here and the lofty ideas that I described in my previous post.

The big picture keeps evolving, more questions emerge, possibilities and options reveal themselves, big ideas and small. Incremental improvements and additions accomplished are motivating and I have something in my hands, so I focus on the small objectives right in front of me and keep my compass pointed at the big ideas.
 

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