The worst thing about all the Web 2.0 hype is the complete loss of business perspective – WTF2.0
From my own “business pespective”, a the term “Web 2.0” is only worth using if the focus is on….
• How enabled users are to create value
• The value of what users create as a result
• How that value can be monetized
Cool stuff like mashups work only a means to this end
Areas of concern/ opportunity
• Information overload, micromedia explosion
• Shifting centers of trust and influence (Peers, Old media, New media, Experts…)
• Decreasing effectiveness of current monetization strategies
• “Online” apps converging with “offline” = “no-lines”
Summary of monetization strategies
• Subscription (eg. 37signals, eMusic)
• Value added services (especially offline services eg Brainreactions.net)
• Value added products (Wikipedia selling WikiBooks?)
• Charging for access to value you “own” (business pay to post ads on craigslist, users free)
• Monetizing positive externalities (donation mechanisms, merchandise)
• Focus on product/ core competency, with web2.0 as platform (see SkinnyCorp’s clothing lines, or Zazzle)
Having said that, this is how I would come in as a challenger/ new market entrant
Now it is easier to engage the mass market than ever. Which is why mass market is most competitive. I suggest capturing one differentiated segment at a time.
Eg. Naver.com kicks Google’s ass in Korea… 40% market share vs 2%!!! Would naver have achieved the same success attacking Google head on? Doubt it.
HOW? Secure user trust by helping communities evolve, then adding value…
• Understand who they are – and what they need (appeal to the essential needs like recognition, belonging, and most of all… hooking up!)
• Target niche – and grow from there (across the ends of the long tail) by making mass customization effortless.
• Enable them with easy and fun apps and incentives.
• Let community decide what impacts them (user invite other users?)
• Keep eye on incentives for participation! (Instant gratification with AJAX helps, skinnycorp uses $$$)
Examples of those who do this well?
What do you guys think? What did I miss? I’m very interested in those which make users real happy AS WELL AS make some decent moolah.