Death by a thousand small features


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


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In 2010, Gaia Online started a user acquisition campaign to grow their user base. To simplify the on boarding process, they launched the Big Red Button home page below. It worked. Conversion rates from the home page spiked. Simple user experiences, like this big red button, are effective because users understand what is expected of them. There is just one flow. But small features, imperceptible, innocuous features can unexpectedly alter user behavior by adding new flows.

Death by a thousand small features


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




In 2010, Gaia Online started a user acquisition campaign to grow their user base. To simplify the on boarding process, they launched the Big Red Button home page below. It worked. Conversion rates from the home page spiked. 800px-GaiaOnline_Homepage_2010_-_Big_Red_Button.png Simple user experiences, like this big red button, are effective because users understand what is expected of them. There is just one flow. But small features, imperceptible, innocuous features can unexpectedly alter user behavior by adding new flows. The coupon code is a great example of this: coupon3.jpeg The coupon code is a universal UI element in most check out processes. It seems like a great feature. But as an ecommerce expert pointed out to me yesterday, it’s a huge problem. It is a call-to-action to abandon the current cart - a worst case scenario. If a customer has a coupon code, the feature works as expected, and the customer enters the code Continue reading "Death by a thousand small features"

The tension between predictability and creativity


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


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In every one of my conversations with Peter Lehrman, founder of AxialMarket, he always speaks about AxialMarket as “the business.” Never the company, the startup or any other word. At first blush I thought it was a trivial semantic difference, a New York-ism, but over time I’ve come to realize this word choice marks a significant difference that manifests itself in culture, product and go to market. Calling any company a business connotes a formality the word startup doesn’t share.

The tension between predictability and creativity


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




In every one of my conversations with Peter Lehrman, founder of AxialMarket, he always speaks about AxialMarket as “the business.” Never the company, the startup or any other word. At first blush I thought it was a trivial semantic difference, a New York-ism, but over time I’ve come to realize this word choice marks a significant difference that manifests itself in culture, product and go to market. Calling any company a business connotes a formality the word startup doesn’t share. A business is serious. A business is a stand-alone self sustaining entity. A business evokes thoughts of goals, revenue, profitability, execution and a performance mentality. On the other hand, the word startup feels exploratory and casual and evokes images of tshirts, jeans, hacking, electric scooters, experimentation - a culture and brand image startups have actively cultivated. It’s not to say many startups aren’t performance-driven organizations using management techniques like Continue reading "The tension between predictability and creativity"

Consumer investment fatigue


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


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Many of the promising marketing and media innovations of the past six years, daily deals, subscription ecommerce, social gaming and social media, have been struggling. This trend is plain to see from IPO performance and negative press cycles. I’ve been asked a few times whether there is consumer investment fatigue as a result. Fatigue is too strong a characterization. It would be foolish for any investor to write off consumer investing as a category because of the massive opportunity consumer internet companies offer.

Consumer investment fatigue


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


Click here to view on the original site: Original Post




Many of the promising marketing and media innovations of the past six years, daily deals, subscription ecommerce, social gaming and social media, have been struggling. This trend is plain to see from IPO performance and negative press cycles. I’ve been asked a few times whether there is consumer investment fatigue as a result. Fatigue is too strong a characterization. It would be foolish for any investor to write off consumer investing as a category because of the massive opportunity consumer internet companies offer. The fastest growing and often the largest Internet businesses are consumer businesses: Google, Amazon, Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, to name a few. Instead, investors are faced with a choice between two strategies. Option 1: pursue a contrarian growth strategy investing in a few consumer Internet companies at similar prices to the previous several years. Implicitly, these investment are bets that new, more lucrative and sustainable revenue streams or Continue reading "Consumer investment fatigue"

Simplicity. Quality. Inspiration.


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


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Two weeks ago, James Reinhart, founder and CEO of ThredUp, led his company through a branding exercise. The team spent an afternoon comparing and contrasting the brand attributes of Starbucks and Peets, Whole Foods and Safeway and a few other competitive pairs. The team quickly distilled each company’s brand into one word. Long ago, each of these brand selected the value that would define their brand. Every decision since that point had been made with that value in mind.

Simplicity. Quality. Inspiration.


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


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Two weeks ago, James Reinhart, founder and CEO of ThredUp, led his company through a branding exercise. The team spent an afternoon comparing and contrasting the brand attributes of Starbucks and Peets, Whole Foods and Safeway and a few other competitive pairs. The team quickly distilled each company’s brand into one word. Long ago, each of these brand selected the value that would define their brand. Every decision since that point had been made with that value in mind. Netflix: freedom. Apple: simplicity. Starbucks: quality. Nike: inspiration. Google: focus on the user. Zappos: service Screen Shot 2012-08-26 at 8.36.15 PM.png Defining a business’s one core value, it’s brand identity, is essential to its success. This core value originates within the company, is reinforced through culture and ultimately permeates the organization through product decisions, marketing copy and customer interaction. Toward the end of the afternoon, James asked the company to perform the brand attribute analysis for Continue reading "Simplicity. Quality. Inspiration."

Radio Ga Ga


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


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Must content distribution platforms be reinvented every few years? Left to its own devices, the mob will augment, accessorize, spam, degrade and noisify whatever they have access to, until it loses beauty and function and becomes something else. Seth Godin Given the noise and misinformation disseminated on Twitter both during the election and the Sandy disaster, I’ve been wondering how Godin’s thoughts apply to new information networks: blogs and feeds.

Radio Ga Ga


This post is by Tomasz Tunguz from Tomasz Tunguz


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Must content distribution platforms be reinvented every few years?
Left to its own devices, the mob will augment, accessorize, spam, degrade and noisify whatever they have access to, until it loses beauty and function and becomes something else.
Seth Godin
Given the noise and misinformation disseminated on Twitter both during the election and the Sandy disaster, I’ve been wondering how Godin’s thoughts apply to new information networks: blogs and feeds.

Sifting the feed in search of the truth

There is an undeniable early movement toward editorially curated publishing. The Twitter founders have launched the most visible response. Medium, a low volume, high quality content site is a direct (and opposite) reaction to the high volume, noisy Twitter feed.

Content proliferation is governed by its half-life

In addition to volume reduction, Medium axes another dimension: time. Medium places no dates on its posts. Instead, Medium uses a voting system
dolmen_fm_radio.jpg
Continue reading "Radio Ga Ga"