Trade economy is one the foremost and oldest form of exchanging goods among people. When I was a young boy, long before sports and girls had started to occupy our free time, I was in the habit of collecting and exchanging cards. There were cards with sport or movie stars captured during their “heroic” moments. We collect the cards from gum packages and we trade them in order to manage to have a full collection. I remember, that with a full collection you would get a wonderful album to keep the cards you have collected in and various other small gifts. The price was not such great, but the process of locating, trade them and negotiate for the cards we haven’t in our “repository” was exhilarating!
Was It Trade?
What was that we were doing at that time? Was it a trade action or a game! It was something aiming at gaining profit, or just thrill? Well, actually the simple procedure of finding and exchanging goods (“the sport/movie cards”) was very important for us! It was not for laughs and we consider it as one of the main activities in our day!
Why? Because it was important to have gained the full series. As if you were equally important when you do it! And for this, simple, reason, it was an activity consuming much of our time (at least during my junior years)!
Technically speaking it was a trade, but it wasn’t a commerce per se! It was a simple act of giving you that and take this! At the end of the day, the person was closer to complete the designated series of cards was the person with the bigger authority and influence in this game!
Of course, the game wasn’t for everyone. You should be smart, cunning and clever to locate the cards you needed and get them without too many of your schoolmates take notice. Because in such an event a fierce competition would start, a predicament, you were, many times, unable to handle in an effective way!
The “catch” was to be able to acquire the missing pieces in the duration without providing hints to other contestants, and, when you were ready, to present the full set in pride and honor to everyone wanted to pay notice!
The whole “game” was based on a simple and often misread foundation, which was the trust! Trust that you have achieved your goals using:
- the rules of the games (you exchange the cards you own, freely, without coercion or any other force of pressure! Even if that means that you had to consume a lot of gums!)
- only the legitimate means (otherwise someone would tell something different)
- your abilities and skills (without bringing someone else inside from the outside environment of the game [like your father, mother, etc.])
If you were passed from these “trials” in the middle of your classmates you were okay and become the hero of the day! The real gain and value of winning were more intangible than the tangible one (the full set of cards), but the impact at your character was paramount!
Why? Because you have been recognized as a valid player in the game and you were enjoining the trust and admiration of the other contestants!
Sales is a Matter of Trust
Commerce started, a long time ago, somewhat like this, transferring goods from people have them in abundance to people haven’t them and gaining some profit in the process. This simple economic “circuit” is at the base of our modern, more complex and vast integrated global economy, in which the traditional “objects” of trade may have changed, but the basic forms of trading them have remained the same.
Still today. you trade something for something else you do not have or you cannot produce, even though the “objects” of your current trade may be likes, trusts, future value, contacts, affiliations, etc.
We have moved beyond the era where we were just producers or just consumers! After the internet’s arrival, a person (YOU) can be either a consumer, a producer or both according to their liking.
Usually, as people we are both, trying to trade things that we have or we can easily produce (possibly in abundance) and matter to others!
You exchange one value for another! But, the more you trade, the more you interact and as more you interact in a friendly and consistent manner, the more you gain trust. Exactly as in the card game, I played as a kid!
Ultimately your sales and your “profits” will depend on the amount of trust you manage to “gather” after all of your interactions in your “virtual” and “physical” niche markets you are active.
What do you think?