I visited Grand Central Terminal in New York last week to check out an unusual display by software vendor Intuit as it tries to get more small businesses to adopt its QuickBooks accounting software, even businesses that arenâ€™t really businesses yet.
Intuit set up a kiosk where people could go in and describe their aspirations in front of a video camera. Intuit has been posting the videos to the Web, and it plans to award a grand prize of $50,000 (actually $40,000 in cash and another $10,000 in consulting and service fees) to one winner to help launch their business. You can check out some of the videos at IWillJustStart.com.
The competition leverages the popularity of video-sharing sites like YouTube, where users have been uploading all manner of creative and zany videos. Intuit is letting aspiring entrepreneurs upload their videos directly to its site in case they donâ€™t manage to go to any of the other stops along the companyâ€™s promotional tour. The company is also soliciting written descriptions that can be posted to the site in lieu of a video.
Photo by Intuit.