On My First Smartphone

On My First Smartphone

I am a late adopter of technology. Indeed, I just got my first smartphone this summer. (Go ahead and interrogate me in the comments.)

Having a smartphone has taught me about the nature of competition — rather, cooperation — in business. 

Your best salespeople are your customers.

I chose a Samsung S6. Samsung never convinced me to get a smartphone. While I’d seen ads for the S6, a thirty-second mass-market ad is just not as powerful as a friend’s testimony. 

Marketing is moving toward mass communication to unique stories. I’d gone years without an ad moving me in the direction of any smartphone. Only after hearing from a friend how the S6 had improved his productivity (and why it’s better than an iPhone) did I pursue one. 

Customers are salespeople too — make your sales force happy. A happy customer isn’t just selling your product — he’s selling himself on how knowing your product makes him smarter.

Your best developers are your competitors.

James Altucher explains Google’s success. Say you’re searching for Van Gogh. Altucher says Google essentially says the following:

I, Google, know nothing about Vincent Van Gogh. But here are 14 million other places you can go and I’ve taken the time to read through all of them very quickly and tell you the ones I think are best.

Smartphones are like this. Assuming the OS is even built by the phone manufacturer, most apps are third-party. A good smartphone gets you off its boring in-house programs quickly. Less time figuring out how to make a call, more time hailing an Uber or finding a good pizza place near you.

Samsung doesn’t think about Facebook as Twitter as competitors looking to hijack their smartphone customers’ attention. Instead, they see these apps as free business development.


The smartphone reflects what’s different about the digital economy. From open source collaboration to story-based content marketing, I’ve got a new business coach with me constantly now.

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