media etc


“Imagine, if you will, sitting down to your morning coffee, turning on your home computer, to read the day’s newspaper. Well it’s not as far fetched as it may seem”

The likely unauthorized use of copyrighted music is unprofessional but some of the clips are precious.

Filed under: mediums

Appropriating Thoughts on VC Industry to Newspaper Business

Sounds like a similar problem facing the newspaper industry.

I think “back to the future” is the answer to most of the venture capital asset class problems. Less capital in the asset class, smaller fund sizes, smaller partnerships, smaller deals, and smaller exits. The math works as long as you don’t put too many zeros on the end of the numbers you are working with.A VC, Apr 2009

Filed under: venture capital

Competitive Bidding With Ads On Search, BT, and Ad Lableling

Ben Edelman posts a very interesting article on his blog regarding a new proposal in Utah called HB450. This proposal seeks to block competitive bidding from advertisers on search engines. Edelman correctly points out that Google makes more money by allowing competitive advertising. This much is true. But I’m not sure I buy Edelman’s argument that competitive advertising confuses users. Is HB450 helpful? I don’t really see the problem.

But the proposed bill raises an additional potential question. Should competitive behavioral targeting be allowed? I imagine Edelman wouldn’t have a problem with this.

But Edeman also raises an interesting point. The “sponsored links” label on Google Search results are likely misunderstood by many consumers.  The minimum Google could do is change the name. Could this label be used by Google because it increases the click-through rate and further increases Google’s revenues.  By misdirecting even a small percentage of users to advertisements instead of content, Google is profiting by giving inferior information (as defined by Google’s PageRank) to  the public.

Filed under: mediums

Will They Come?

It’s important to remember that if you build a site, and don’t drive traffic to it, that most likely the site will rarely be seen.

Some publishers will attract audiences but many will not. Most brands will not.

Banners are usually created to drive traffic to websites. But CTR is almost dead — with an average hovering around 0.1%.

If it’s not possible to drive traffic to a website then most websites probably shouldn’t be created.

That’s a scary thought for most digital agencies that build websites for a living.

Filed under: communications agency,

Why Banners Are Online Advertising’s Twitter

If you love Twitter, you should love banner advertising and outdoor billboards. It’s the simplest, lowest-common denominator for display advertising. Why do so many people love Twitter and hate banners?

Filed under: digital display ad


Why do we talk about CTR when we have the technology to measure and optimize view-through rate.

New metrics may be helpful but they would still obscure the most important metrics (sales lift).

But VTR analysis would reveal incrementally more valuable response data than what CTR data currently provides.

Filed under: ctr, vtr

The Curious Case of Mahalo Answers

I posted a less-than-postive review of Jason Calacanis’s post about MySpace the other day. But I must say, I just noticed the Mahalo Answers, “Ask me a question” feature on his profile and I think it’s brilliant.

I think this feature improvement, combined with reputation management, will enable serious growth potential as well as a potential quality score for content additions from the community in a way that Wikipedia  does not offer. I expect Squidoo to follow.

Filed under: mahalo

Is a Chromance Brewing?

The new ads from Google are really good. Noteworthy that they didn’t use traditional ad agencies. I don’t think it’s a moral outrage but it’s still kind of a diss. Maybe the next ads will come from agencies.

Filed under: google,

Owning The Conversation

There are a ton of blog and community platforms out there but unfortunately few of them really talk to each other.

When a user comments on a blog, the technology platform should allow users the option of posting the comment on the user’s blog with a link to the content the user is commenting on.

– Twitter and Tumblr do a bad job of this.
– Typepad and WordPress don’t do it at all.

Interestingly, DISQUS almost does it. But this can only be used if it’s installed (rather than hosted) It’s also hard to see which posts were most recently posted.

I suspect that once this process-fix is implemented that commenting and engagement will improve markedly.

When we look at the death of the newspaper industry we will  blame them for their inability to adapt and master web technology. Magazines have always served communities but for some reason refused to facillitate relationships and conversations between them.

Instead of developing their own Facebooks, Tumblrs, Diggs, and DISQUSs, they bought, Pointroll.

Filed under: blogs, ,

The First Eight Things the Existing CEO of Mahalo Should Do

I don’t work for Mahalo and I don’t know Jason Calacanis. But I found his post about MySpace a bit presumptuous and, frankly, bizarre.

So here are my top-8 things Jason Calacanis should start working on:

1. Get a new designer. The site is really hard to read.

2. Create an original strategy. Too many of your products are inferior ripoffs of those created by competitors that execute better.

3. Focus on either a very simple, straightforward technology product that can be useful to everyone or create something deep and rich that can be useful to a niche audience.

4.  Dominate what you focus on before creating new products.

5. Hire a PR-firm or staffer who can speak on your company’s behalf and enable you to focus on running your company.

6. Stop writing long blog entries that don’t further the interests of Mahalo.

7. Focus on building a good, profitable business that consumers love. Trying to create hype through your blog posts (perhaps in the hopes of unloading the unprofitable, half-baked Mahalo) looks bad.

8. Stop worrying about jobs you don’t have. Focus on making Mahalo work.

Filed under: Jason Calacanis,