Thursday, June 22, 2006

Don't Get Lost in the Ether

Everywhere I look, I seem to be coming across Ether, a start-up that helps people sell their expertise by phone through telephone consulting.

The idea: You sign up with Ether and specify your fee per call or per minute. Your phone rings and you're notified that it's an Ether call and that the person on the other end is seeking your advice. You bill by the minute or call. Ether takes 10%-15% of the fee.

This seems like an interesting idea, particularly for independent consultants. However, attracting clients and getting the word out about the fact that you can be called for advice for a fee might be more challenging. Just putting up the number on a web site seems to not be as effective as hoped for most users.

There are requests for Ether to incorporate a directory of users on their web site, but Ether is still somewhat in development mode and has not yet committed to such a tool.

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