Wednesday, September 26

Google, disruptive and dumping?

There's lots of talk of Google's push into ad-serving, with GoogleClick offering 'free display ad-serving' for publishers. So Google wipes out the economics of the ad-serving business in one short-sharp hit.

In the offline world there's an ugly word to describe these economics - "dumping" [offering a product below the costs of production to attack a market]. In digital we call it "disruptive".

Obviously it's not strictly free, as Google will make it's cut from the arbitrage in market pricing, but it wont charge the publisher for the priviledge. It's a master stroke if they get scale, which they surely will, and will crush ad-servering businesses all over the world. That perhaps, isn't quite in line with Google's moto "don't be evil". But it is certainly dispruptive (online), dumping (offline).

Thursday, September 13

The Wisdom of Vietnam

In Ho Chi Minh City right now and I've got a free moment not in meetings, eating or travelling. I've been here so many times now that sometimes I think that it is becoming so 'westernised' that the culture is fading, actually, I guess I'm simply becoming more familiar with the sites and sounds.

Understanding business here, however, is an entirely different ball game. The market moves sooo fast, everyone is an entrepreneur and has a fearless approach to business. In the UK we have near perfect information, for any market, industry, investment you can you can find free or paid analysis to help decision making. In Viet Nam this simply isn't the case, so to put your pulse on the market you have to be in it, speaking it's language.

Sitting on the back of a motorbike cruising through the crazy rush-hour traffic I thought "to understand business in VN look at rush hour motorbike traffic, from a distance it looks crazy, disorganised and getting nowhere fast, but if you're in it, everyone is moving ahead quickly and skillfully changing direction to avoid a crash.

It may not make sense but you can be sure that it is heading somewhere.

Right, time for a bowl of Pho and a strong coffee.

Thursday, September 6

The Web by Tube

Information Architects in Japan have detangled the top 200 sites on the web, and then put them back together on the Tokyo Metro Map! The interactive version is a really useful visual tool to look at trends, relationships and who the 'players' are.