The web is 20. Is it still relevant?
There has been much discussion lately, most of it negativeÂ (you can read more comments on Technorati), about the comeback of boo.com and once again, I find myself on the opposite side of the shared wisdom. Before I go into reasons as to why I think a comeback by Boo.com (a boo.comeback?) makes sense, let me first go into my unique qualifications to make such an assessment: I happen to have worked at Boo.com in the past and I was the insider who exposed some of the challenges the company had faced. I spent a fair amount of my time, in 2000 and 2001, talking at conferences about the lessons learned from this failure and I think that some of those are now fixed. Looking Back In the ensuing 6 years, I’ve been going over and over what went wrong and discovered more lessons along the way: the market conditions were wrong, we were young and arrogant, and, for the most part, we didn’t really understand the magnitude of what we were trying to accomplish: to remind people, our goal was to launch a website in 16 countries (15 EU countries + the US) on day one, localizing our site for…Read More
Apple has it. Google has it. Microsoft fails at it. Yahoo! sometimes does and sometimes doesn’t. What I am talking about is buzz and coolness. It seems every time Apple or Google introduces a new product, the buzz is high. For example, Apple recently introduced a $350 speaker and, while the reaction was more tepid than it has been for other Apple products, no one seem to point that the emperor was looking very very naked. Yet, Microsoft keeps throwing out new products and few people seem to be very interested (no matter how Scoble tries to browbeat us into thinking of Microsoft as cool). Similarly, today, Google introduced a finance section that mimicked much of what yahoo! finance has been doing for years. It has a couple of nice AJAX-based features but, all and all, it’s not enough of an improvement to be considered like something that could potentially dominate the tech news cycle. And yet, every major tech pub or mainstream publication has covered the release. why? Trying to divine the source of coolness What Google and Apple seem to have understood is that there are ways to make oneself look cool. I’m going to try to lay…Read More
Metrics weeks continues with a review of how to weight metrics. So far, I’ve looked into who, in a company could benefit from metrics. I then delved into two different types of metrics: hard metrics, which can easily be measured, and soft metrics, which cannot. Today, I’m going to try to figure out how this all weights out. Grouping the metrics In order to figure out weighting, I first started to think about how to group different metrics. For this purpose, I looked at things like the base value (which would give us a baseline as to how much a business is worth based solely on revenue and revenue growth), inventory (looking at things like traffic, reach, and output, because they all give us some data points as to the growth of monetizable assets in the future), consumer involvement (looking at info like links, subscribtions, and comments to define the value of customers), and growth potential (including some more fuzzy measure of potential growth and the advantages of the integration value). My reasoning for grouping things in this way was that it might make it easier to figure out weighting across those large catch-all categories (and, if there is any…Read More