One of the most common questions I get asked, while talking about platforms, relates to the issue of labor on platforms. Facebook and Twitter, among others, get a lot of value from their users and make billions of dollars, but the users don’t see much kickback. The economics of free-labor platforms Social networks like [...]
Marketplaces are difficult businesses to get off the ground. A marketplace without buyers cannot attract sellers and vice versa. In fact, the infamy of this proverbial chicken and egg problem detracts entrepreneurs from the challenges that a marketplace presents after it has successfully gained adoption and is successfully matching buyers with sellers. After all, marketplaces for [...]
You can’t invite people to a party and try to sell them stuff. Pretty much every starry-eyed startup that went after eyeballs gets it by now. Over the last seven years the web has moved away from a consumption medium (think NY times) to a creation-consumption medium (think Twitter, Facebook). But we’ve been very tardy [...]
Note: This essay was first featured on TheNextWeb Technology startups are disruptive because they are driven by a desire to solve an unsolved problem in a unique way and create new value. Most large and established companies, in contrast, are driven by a desire to defeat competition and protect their market turf. Consider the problem [...]
Every new business that is serious about getting traction needs to figure out a user acquisition strategy. In a similar way, every new business (in the consumer internet space) that is serious about monetization needs to figure our a Wallet-acquisition strategy. Wallet-Acquisition and Recurring Revenue Models Every business seeking a revenue model has at least [...]
Once upon a time, we used to get dumb messages from the idiot box. Then the Internet happened! Traditionally, the user and the advertiser have been two distinct categories. Most advertising based businesses (print, radio, TV) had two distinct segments to address, the users and the advertisers. This structure was brought onto the web as [...]
What’s common to Freemium, Social Networks and Marketplaces? Very little, apparently. Except that it’s a brilliant pricing strategy for getting early traction on a network business.
While monetizing a business network, community or marketplace, a successful company would be one which knows what the central proposition of the product is and would know how to monetize that particular proposition. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that the central proposition for a marketplace is the transaction happening between two parties on it. [...]