Archive | July, 2010

More on Scarcity

Posted by: Matt Shanahan This week, Marion Maneker wrote a thoughtful piece called “The Case Against the Case Against Paywalls.”  In it, he examines the economics of abundance and scarcity in the media space.  Well worth the read.

Manufacturing Scarcity to Drive Publisher Profits

Posted by: Matt Shanahan I’ve recently been hearing a lot of chatter about scarcity in the publishing world. If you listen to studies (e.g., Pew), twitterers (e.g., paywall), and bloggers (e.g., Jeff Jarvis), manufacturing scarcity sounds impossible – even unethical. But in reality, publishers have the absolute need to manufacture scarcity to drive profitable revenue.   From the business ethics perspective, it is common business practice to manufacture scarcity for profitability.  Take a look at how the airline industry is finally returning to profitability after a decade of losses; most of this profit is generated because of the reduction in capacity (a.k.a., artificial scarcity).  Auto manufacturers often retain pricing premiums by limiting production (a.k.a., artificial scarcity).  In the entertainment industry, […]

Ask Your Audience What Ads They Want

Posted by: Matt Shanahan Twitter recently began a new service called @earlybird.  The service allows Twitter to deliver offers – think ads – directly to a user’s client.  People are proactively signing up to receive ads!  In the FAQ for @earlybird is the question “what if I’m only interested in offers for a specific category, let’s say fashion or music?.”  The response is “We’re thinking about you, too.”  The performance of advertising is high when you combine opt-in and intent.  Twitter understands that and will be asking the audience “what ads do you want?” So why not do this for display advertising?  Personally, I like a good ad (e.g., Super Bowl ads).  It’s the bad ones that I would like […]

Isn’t the Customer King?

Posted by: Matt Shanahan “Technology is king” according to a recent MediaPost article; “content is king” according to a paidContent.org article; and “curation is king” according to a Business Insider article.  For all the talk of monarchy, why isn’t the customer king? I guess it has to do with the definition of king.  For this post, I’m proposing a king be defined as the entity paying the way for everyone else in a particular market.  Let’s face it, without a king of my definition there is no market (i.e., no kingdom). Interestingly, in paid content most people wouldn’t debate that the subscriber is king.  Sales, marketing, and product management teams are driven by the need to improve their offering and serve […]