Traditional businesses follow a simple formula: create a product or service, sell it, collect money. But in the last few years a fundamentally different model has taken root - one in which consumers have more choices, more tools, more information, and more peer-to-peer power. Pioneering entrepreneur Lisa Gansky calls it the Mesh and reveals why it will soon dominate the future of business. Mesh companies use social media, wireless networks, and data crunched from every available source to provide people with goods and services at the exact moment they need them, without the burden and expense of owning them outright. Gansky reveals how there is real money to be made and trusted brands and strong communities to be built in helping your customers buy less but use more. Consider the explosive growth of Zipcar. By exploiting the latest technology and making it easy and affordable to have a car whenever you need one, this young company is helping to redefine personal transportation. And deeply worrying established competitors. Gansky shows how the same pattern is playing out with less famous Mesh companies that are reinventing an enormous range of industries: thredUP enables mail-in kids'-clothing swaps. One year after launching, it has 10,000 members exchanging more than 14,000 items per month. Kickstarter connects artists who need funding with small donors who want to support them. The firm has helped hundreds of projects raise as much as $200,000 without the usual angst of fundraising. Groupon harnesses collective buying power to offer daily discounts to its 5 million subscribers. Sixteen months after inception, it has raised over $170 million in venture capital. In the tradition of The Long Tail, The Mesh illustrates a huge new opportunity that's already driving new businesses and renewing old ones. It's your essential guide to the new wave of information-enabled commerce that's also improving our communities and our planet.
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