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This Week in IDEA | September 16, 2009

Our eNewsletter, This Week in IDEA, keeps you informed with the latest news and education about IDEA, our solutions and services, and our customers and partners. IDEA’s knowledgeable staff and other contributing writers share insights, resources and special offers to help you Unleash the power of e. Subscribe now to receive This Week in IDEA in your email inbox every other Thursday and add our RSS feed to your reader.


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New IDEA IRD Customers

IDEA announces 11 new IDEA IRD customers. Read more about these companies and how you can begin trading with them electronically to expand your business.

New IDEA IRD Customers

IDEA, a 1SYNC Data Pool On-Board Solution (OBS) partner, implements suppliers that subscribe to the 1SYNC data pool using IDEA's IRD CERICOMX® application. IDEA was recently assigned 11 suppliers:

These companies will be trained to use IRD CERICOMX®, an IDEA branded product for supporting and uploading supplier product information into the GS1 Registry® and GDSN via the 1SYNC Data Pool.

If you would like to find out more about the CERICOMX® product, please contact , IRD Product & Customer Support Manager, at .

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New Resources! Give Your Trading Partners the Data that Sells

A new datasheet explaining the importance of marketing your products in the Data Synchronization Platform’s Industry Data Warehouse (IDW) is now available. Take a look at the new resource and forward it to your colleagues and trading partners to help spread the word. For those of you who already understand the value, you can download the latest Portal user guide supplement that explains how to load marketing data step-by-step.

Frequently providing and obtaining marketing data in IDW is the most cost-effective way to market products – manufacturers can reach the entire distribution channel in one step and distributors can access the latest marketing data in one location. The new marketing datasheet explains how distributors use marketing data in IDW to find and sell more products. Providing marketing data to IDW helps manufacturers to:

  • Clearly describe products to customers and consumers
  • Differentiate products and gain a competitive edge
  • Save time and money by mass-publishing marketing data in one location

Access the marketing datasheet now or view it later in the Resource Center.

For those of you who already understand the importance of marketing your products in IDW, you can download the latest Portal user guide supplement called “How to Load Your Marketing Data to IDW” at > My Training and Support > User Guides > IDW. You must login with your Portal ID to view the document. This guide takes you through the five key steps you need to take to publish your marketing data in IDW including:

1. Find out what marketing data is available for your company and where it is stored in your IT landscape
2. Decide the format in which you will provide the marketing data
3. Select an option for loading images to IDW
4. Select your method of sending marketing data to IDW
5. Review the marketing data your trading partners will see in IDW

You can read past articles about marketing products in IDW by clicking on the keyword links below.

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Dirk Johnson Joins the IDEA Team

Dirk Johnson, formerly Partner – Operations Director at DomainDrivers LLC, has joined the Data Synchronization Platform team as a Data Quality Analyst. Johnson will monitor and manage all activities and processes that impact the quality of data available to IDEA customers. He will work with manufacturers, distributors and software providers to help resolve data quality issues and define and execute strategies to improve data quality.

Johnson brings 13 years of manufacturer product management experience and 11 years of web design, development and marketing experience to IDEA. Among his past endeavors, he successfully founded and developed a product line that is still sold worldwide and helped hundreds of businesses increase web traffic and increase competiveness via effective online marketing techniques.

Dirk can be reached at or . Welcome to the IDEA team!

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Whose Comfort Zone Are You In?

The only thing worse than staying in your comfort zone is to stretch yourself out of your comfort zone and jump into someone else’s. Read this article to get to know the closing keynote speaker of the IDEA E-Biz Forum 2009, Marilyn Sherman. She takes the stage next week in Tucson, AZ on Thursday, September 24.

By: Marilyn Sherman, Owner, UpFront Presentations (  

An audience member actually crystallized this concept for me, which changed the path of my business. I was presenting a program on goal setting and following your own path. I shared my story about working as a corporate trainer when I had the opportunity to fulfill my lifelong dream of becoming a professional speaker.

I called my dad, my mentor, to tell him about this great opportunity.

He asked me some questions:

  • Will you have a long-term contract? No, it will be a month to month agreement.
  • Will you have a guaranteed number of dates each month? No guarantees, each month will be different.
  • Will you have any benefits? No, I’d be an independent contractor so benefits would have to come out of my own pocket.

He reminded me that I had a good job, making decent money, so I should stay right where I was. I decided to follow my dream, take the leap, and became a full time seminar leader. The following year, the company I used to work for was sold, and my old colleagues had to re-locate or get new jobs.

After telling that story, I asked what I thought was a rhetorical question: “Can you imagine if I stayed because my dad said I had a good job?” An audience member spoke up and answered, “You would have been living in your dad’s comfort zone”.

That night, I re-wrote my program and titled it “Whose Comfort Zone Are You In?” My intention was (and still is) to inspire people to follow their own path and not be influenced out of their dreams ending up in someone else’s comfort zone.

Some people ask, “what’s wrong with staying in your comfort zone when it’s so…comfortable!”

Eventually you settle. As a full time keynote speaker, I have three programs that I present. I know when I am settling into my comfort zone when I play it safe on stage and deliver the same speech today as I did last week. I actually bore myself. My biggest fear is to be boring so I try to stretch myself each time I deliver a keynote. The comfortable, easy and safe thing to do is to show up and speak. Now, I invest more time before my presentation. Some people use a pre-program questionnaire. I prefer going to an event early and meet as many people as possible. Then I am able to use their stories in my keynote to illustrate my points. Lou Heckler taught me to not be the hero in my own stories, so I make my audience members the heroes. The result is, I deliver a fresh, exciting keynote and it’s never the same speech twice.

Comfort Zone gut check when making decisions:

1.  Are you trying to make the right decision for you or are trying to please/impress someone else? 
2.  Look at the people you go to when contemplating decisions. Do they reflect back to you questions so your answers show your true intention? Or, do you go to people who just tell you what to do?
3.  Are you as excited about your presentation today as you were when you first presented it?

The answers to these will tell you if you are in your comfort zone, in someone else’s or if you are on your way to stretch your own comfort zone.

Marilyn will speak on “Why Settle for the Balcony? Get a Front-row Seat in Life!” during the closing General Session at the IDEA E-Biz Forum next week. Join us at the dynamic keynote where she will inspire you to get out of the balcony of life and go for that front-row seat! With so many things out of control these days, you will be reminded that your attitude and perception are 100% within your control. She is excited to meet you all!

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Forum Hot Fact: User Group Agendas Revealed

We are looking forward to seeing everyone at the Forum next week in Tucson, AZ. If you haven’t registered, you can still register on-site at the event on Tuesday, September 22. Thanks to your feedback, the IDW and IDX User Group agendas are complete.

IDW User Group

  • Brief overview and demo of new IDW features including:
    • New authorization process
    • Source flags
    • Attributed data fields
    • Live Chat
    • Tooltips
    • Country of Origin available for EZ View loads
    • ARRA flag available
  • Overview of what’s to come in the near future:
    • Distributor ability to extract data by price sheet
    • Distributor Data Request Wizard
    • Manufacturer option to turn off expired pricing
  • Demo of Utilities Workstation
  • Tips and tricks
    • What the manufacturer see vs. what the distributor sees
    • Using the IDW messaging feature to your advantage
    • Using load summary effectively
  • Question and answer session
    • How do distributors use marketing content like pictures and spec sheets?
    • More Q & A if time permits

IDX User Group

  • IDX Tracker overview
  • Documents to include in the advanced search capability
  • Using the Tracker to manage trading partner implementations - new project management features
  • New resource links available
  • Overview of advanced capabilities
  • Custom mapping features and services
  • Q & A

Please send any additional feedback to , Director, Products and Services.

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