How do you discover who is interested in what you have to buy or sell?
According to Dealboard’s research, if you are like 90% of seafood producers, processors and wholesalers – by far the majority of the industry – you rely on email communications and some texting to figure this out. It’s clear that technology has under-served the seafood industry, and this is yet another example. Email is an incredibly un-productive way to conduct the business of seafood transactions, for a host of reasons:
Email requires manual effort and copy/paste to construct, which takes time and introduces errors
To use email effectively for seafood offers, Dealboard often finds companies maintaining product and pricing information in Excel spreadsheets. They use this to copy-and-paste information into an email offer. But how do you know that all your buyers or sellers are working from the latest information? And, for each offer, there are always specific details that are unique to the offer and need to be filled in manually. It’s a cumbersome process in which mistakes happen. With email, you might accidentally communicate the wrong thing.
Your message easily gets lost in the noise
Seafood buyers and sellers typically receive 150 to 200 emails a day. If what you’re offering isn’t what they’re looking for at that moment, will they remember you an hour, a day, or a week later? They might. But it’s more than likely that your message will get lost and they will respond to someone else who offered them a similar product more recently than you did.
Email is unstructured, which makes it nearly impossible to find all the right opportunities
One way to find earlier emails is to search for them. But, search is problematic because email is unstructured and subject to semantic differences and input errors. Consider the following two offers, for identical product. If you were looking through the last few days of recent emails (hundreds, maybe thousands) to find offers for sole, you would want to find both of these:
They’re identical, but described differently.
Various parts of the world refer to the same fish using different names, which is understandable (orange boxes).
Luckily, we have the scientific name to use as a common means to identify a species of fish, however in one of the cases above the scientific name is misspelled (purple boxes). As Dealboard works with seafood companies around the globe, we uncover scientific name misspellings very frequently.
Even standard codes such as FAO fishing areas can be referred to in different ways (green boxes). A human being can easily identify that both offers were caught in the same fishing area, but your generic email system wouldn’t.
If you were searching your inbox for recent offers for sole, none of the normal search terms you might use would show you both of these offers. You would miss one or the other, or both of these offers. That means missed opportunities for buyers and for sellers.
Moral of the story:
A rose by any other name might smell as sweet… but you would never be able to locate it in your email inbox.
It's time for a new way to discover who is interested in what you have to buy or sell, which gets around the limitations of email.