Okay – so this might sound a little biased, but I LOVE our biz Rental-Source.com. It’s gaining a lot of momentum right now as well, but I loved it when no one was using it. It’s one of those things where it’s just a site that people needed – but maybe didn’t even know they needed it.
The way it came about was pretty simple. While both my Partner, Henry Kones and myself worked with Lighting Manufacturers, we were often asked “where can I get 8 of these or 12 of those” for cross rentals. It meant we had to always keep either a mental (or in my case, written) database of rental shops for not only our product, but that of our competitors as well. We did this as a service to our clientele.
Shortly after founding GearSource.com i started to think about how I might put together a site that would take on this same challenge. Ideas were tossed around, and Henry and I formed what is now Rental-Source.com. The problem for me has ALWAYS been that we’ve got a Hyphen in the name (or URL more specifically). I’ve always believed that a dash in your URL is the kiss of death. People will usually go directly to the name without the hyphen – or in this case, rentalsource.com which i think is an apartment locating service. Since they won’t be hurrying to send Production people over to our site – we might lose a lot of users at that point. Fact is – I worried about this prior to starting the company, but I was talked into doing it anyway “surely the domain without the hyphen will come available someday”.
So, I am very excited to say that after 3 years in biz, Rental-Source.com is about to undergo a major facelift AND a name change. Sorry, I am NOT gonna give you the new name just yet. You’ll have to wait a little longer for that unveiling. I will tell you though that you will be very pleasantly surprised when you see what we’ve done with the place! This time around, we’re enlisting the Web 2.0 expertise of our newest Web Development department member, Alex Sante. Alex has been working on several web 2.0 applications for a couple of years now – and will bring all of that knowledge to the table for this new revision.
What is Web 2.0 you ask? Well – ask 100 people and you’ll get 200 different answers. Basically, my simple definition of Web 2.0 is as follows; It’s a place where your users are generating content that helps other users once published on the site. In the production industry, Rental-Source is really a 2.0 site, and we are really going to push that envelope with the next version. The site will be a place where the Production rental industry can network. I am not talking about a forum where you can talk to your peers – but something much larger. You can “attach” your company to the manufacturer’s you represent, and the designers who work with your company will also network with your company in a similar way. Think of this similar to My Space or Facebook – but with emphasis on attracting more business to your company. In the coming months, we will be giving you a lot more information, yes – including the new name. This is truly going to revolutionize the way companies Cross Rent gear, and the way that end users locate rental companies as well. However – it will do so much more than that.We’re hoping to launch the new site in June of 2008. I will update you here in this blog – so watch for more in the next couple of months.
Ciao for Now! Marcel