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Articles in the Strategy Category

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[15 May 2008 | 2 Comments | 2,653 views]
Google Commoditizing Networks

A few days ago, I wrote about the commoditization of social networks or rather the social networking feature sets that currently make Myspace and Facebook so unique and neat. Pioneers in social networking like Friendster and Myspace introduced a new data and software architecture that, at the same time clumsily and elegantly, met Internet users’ desire to interact and share content with each other. Finding old friends, connecting with new friends, sharing music and videos, playing collaborative games, and expressing oneself to virtual audiences of thousands all were groundbreaking features …

Entrepreneurship, Strategy, Technology, Venture Capital »

[11 May 2008 | 2 Comments | 2,644 views]

Chris Anderson, a writer at Wired Magazine and author of the influential The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business is Selling Less of More, makes some good points about the insanity of Facebook’s $15 billion valuation, the inadequacy of current approaches to social networking, and the implications of an over-reliance on advertising as a business model. His arguments are useful because entrepreneurs can use them to make concrete business or strategic decisions. He doesn’t use namby pamby qualifications to hedge his bets and predictions. I do …

Business, Entrepreneurship, Hedge Funds, Innovation, Investing, Startups, Strategy, Technology, Venture Capital »

[17 Apr 2008 | No Comment | 1,084 views]

Prompted by the rumblings of activist hedge funds Harbinger Capital and Firebrand Partners last month, I wrote about the New York Times (NYT) and its evolving technology assets. I found the Times to be surprisingly forward-thinking in its investments in the online world. As a strategic investor, it has made some fairly impressive investments in innovative startups that could solve the riddle of monetizing online news and content. Its investments include bets on blog advertising networks, news aggregation websites, blogging platforms, video sharing sites, job search engines, …

Entrepreneurship, Startups, Strategy, Technology, Venture Capital, Video »

[16 Apr 2008 | One Comment | 5,802 views]

I co-founded a tiny little agency a few months ago called SocialOptimize that was focused on producing Facebook apps. At the time of founding, my partner and I received almost overwhelming demand from companies who were desperate to gain a presence on social networking site Facebook. Facebook was already quickly turning into a cultural phenomenon as everyone and their grandmother started registering for the site and “poking” each other.
Essentially, it was this mass of humanity in digital form that attracted advertisers and marketers to jump on the bandwagon and either …

Business, Entrepreneurship, Features, Innovation, Investing, Startups, Strategy, Technology, Venture Capital »

[5 Apr 2008 | 7 Comments | 9,891 views]
Social Networking is Growing Up

Social networking has thus far been primarily about connecting with lost friends, playing simple games, and gawking at strangers. Aside from the amazing ability to reconnect with buddies from middle school, the rest of social networking mirrors normal human behavior in real life. Lots of people need an avenue for rest and relaxation. Dumb games like Pirates vs. Ninjas on Facebook replaces old time-wasters like watching TV. Who hasn’t been to the mall or the park watching people pass by? We’re all voyeurs to some degree but social networks like …

Business, Entrepreneurship, Investing, Startups, Strategy, Venture Capital »

[17 Mar 2008 | 2 Comments | 808 views]

TechCrunch’s Michael Arrington has a very informative piece on the credit crisis and its effect on startups. Apparently, many startups are putting their venture cash in Auction Rate Securities, financial instruments that are normally very liquid and provide better yields than typical bank savings/checkings accounts. Unfortunately, the perfect storm of the current credit crisis has put a freeze on the ARS market and startups are finding a difficult time to access their cash.
What really surprised me from the article was that many startups were putting their cash in …

Business, Entrepreneurship, Features, Hedge Funds, Innovation, Investing, Private Equity, Startups, Strategy, Technology, Venture Capital, Video »

[2 Mar 2008 | One Comment | 1,775 views]
New York Times: Dinosaur or New Media Machine?

Since my current work is in new media and social networking, I am keenly interested in the turbulence facing the newspaper industry. Clients, ranging from Fortune 2000 companies to small innovative startups, come to my team at SocialOptimize to gain an understanding of the new media landscape and to develop an actionable strategy for building a meaningful presence in social networks. They ask about their traditional marketing budgets and I tell them that we will see the disappearance of many old model newspaper, radio, and television companies as they struggle …

Business, Entrepreneurship, Investing, Strategy, Technology, Venture Capital »

[10 Feb 2008 | No Comment | 785 views]
Yahoo to Reject Microsoft Bid: Should Minnows Rejoice?

The New York Times (NYT) is reporting that Yahoo’s (YHOO) board plans to reject Microsoft’s (MSFT) $44.6 billion bid, launched about a week ago. This on the heels of an article, titled Yahoo Sale Could be Bad for Minnows, in which the New York Times explored the implications of the potential diminishment of one of the traditional “exit strategies” for entrepreneurial startups. Venture capitalists and startup entrepreneurs have long adhered to a playbook of creating cutting edge technology with the hope of being acquired by the big three of Google …