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May 31, 2018

The new Mary Meeker / Kleiner Perkins Internet Trends are out

As always: If you download only one study/research/statistics/numbers document this year, it has to be these 300 pages. Interesting how big the China sections became over the years, and that one of my mantras in the last two years: "in saturated markets, growth is harder to find" is emphasized right at the start. You either innovate to steal market share from others, or you win over generation Z. Download your copy here:

https://www.slideshare.net/joshsc/techcrunch-mary-meeker-2018-internet-trends-report

Recode's selection of highlights: https://www.recode.net/2018/5/30/17385116/mary-meeker-slides-internet-trends-code-conference-2018

May 25, 2018

A lesson about pricing power

If you ever wondered how much pricing power matters in the luxury segment, here's a hint: Richemont, the owner of brands like Cartier and Montblanc, destroyed / de-assembled watches worth close to 500 million (!) Euros during the past two years - to avoid having them in unwanted sales channels at discount prices.

https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/may/18/richemont-destroys-nearly-500m-of-watches-in-two-years-amid-buyback-policy

The Modern Football Fan (report)

UK-focused report on how generation Z consume online football content. It was conducted by Copa90, who will have their own agenda with such a study, but it's highly interesting nonetheless. It states that most of +16yr old fans get their introduction to football through video games (FIFA), often support more than one club and reject the traditional broadcast models. And they create: on April 3, 2018 - when Cristiano Ronaldo scored an amazing bicycle kick goal - over 5,600 accounts uploaded over 6,800 different videos/gifs of it to Twitter and Instagram.

Download the unreadable, terribly designed report here, at least full of numbers and stats:
http://copa90.media/insights/

or get the headlines from Digiday:
https://digiday.com/sponsored/copa90-copa90sbl-escaping-algorithm-young-football-fans-might-leave-big-social-platforms/

(The report also claims that young football fans "escape the algorithms" and try to avoid Instagram and such, but I suspect too much wishful thinking from Copa90 there).



May 24, 2018

A great guide to gas

This is a great overview of what Ethereum gas is, what its utility on the blockchain is and how it works. If you're a blockchain expert, don't bother, but if you want to get your head around these topics and understand why Ethereum won't be means of payment in a supermarket soon, but will power an economy of decentralized apps, read this article on Medium.

https://media.consensys.net/a-guide-to-gas-12b40d03605d

May 22, 2018

The moat map

Super interesting article about Amazon, Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Apple - and how they differentiate through or commoditize suppliers, and externalize or internalize network effects. The two graphs are worth the visit alone, but I strongly recommend the full article. By the way, Ben Thompson, the guy running Stratechery, is probably one of the smartest guys in the universe and would be a superstar if he lived in Silicon Valley. I highly recommend the whole blog.

https://stratechery.com/2018/the-moat-map/

Computing power shows the acceleration in AI

Quote: "Three factors drive the advance of AI: algorithmic innovation, data (which can be either supervised data or interactive environments), and the amount of compute available for training." That last one is quantifiable, therefore a good indicator of what's going on. I mean: even if the other two were stable (which they are not), here's a number: Compared to supercomputer "Alex Net" in 2012, the computing power of Alpha Go Zero is a 300,000x increase.

https://blog.openai.com/ai-and-compute/



May 14, 2018

Voice search numbers & stats

Here's an article about voice search - I am not sure whether the title "How entrepreneurs can take advantage of voice search marketing" is true to its promise, but the article references a number of interesting studies and researches and includes a lot of Microsoft Bing & Cortana data about the state of voice search, and that's worth reading anyway:
https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/311236

More:

Capgemini study linked in the article, including infographics:
https://www.capgemini.com/resources/conversational-commerce-dti-report/

Mary Meeker / Kleiner Perkins Voice Chapter:
http://dq756f9pzlyr3.cloudfront.net/file/Internet+Trends+2017+Report.pdf#page=46

Ogilvy Digital Trends report featuring a chapter "the end of typing":
https://www.ogilvy.com/topics/topics-digital/key-digital-trends-for-2018/


Pro Sports clubs are equal parts sports & media companies

Finally it's not me who keeps saying this, but I can quote a publication like Fast Company on that: "like all major pro sports teams, Manchester City as a brand is equal parts sports team and media company". The article outlines their media/content strategy without going into too much detail like technology or staffing, but gives a good overview of what (top) football teams have to deliver in digital media.

https://www.fastcompany.com/40568464/manchester-citys-most-important-product-after-soccer-is-content

More in the same direction about the MLS - they "doubled down on video", and, like with any media outlet, a new star adds a lot of relevance - in this case Zlatan Ibrahimovic. And new stars require the ability to adapt content strategies to their presence, or integrate them into existing strategies seamlessly.

https://frntofficesport.com/inside-mls-digital-strategy-and-the-impact-zlatan-has-had

And finally, if you are not convinced that we are talking about "media companies" here, read this lengthy article about a night with the Chicago Bulls media team. No less than 20 (!!) people are involved in the coverage of a match. What seems to us like "two dudes with smartphones" near the pitch and maybe one more guy in some office updating homepages and apps, is in reality a full-on professional media operation that optimizes content management systems and other crucial parts of technology and creates first-hand, unique content for fans in an already "over-covered" sports media space.

https://www.ama.org/publications/marketingnews/pages/how-chicago-bulls-use-social-media-to-humanize-players.aspx 

May 11, 2018

We are data factories (not mines)

Super-interesting read by Nicholas Carr on data. An older theory of mine is that we made a foundational mistake when the internet unfolded: we gave ownership to the data to the place where it was created rather to the people creating it. So when I purchase a product on Amazon, or even if I search for something on Google, that data could (in my eyes: should) be mine. But it isn't. In this case, it's Amazon's and Google's, and we are struggling to find regulations like GDPR to give me as a consumer at least some control over it. Carr provides a sophisticated overview on how to approach this question by seperating two philosophies by the metaphors of mines and factories. Plus links to other very interesting articles on that topic that I wouldn't have stumbled upon on my own. If you're interested in data, read this.

http://www.roughtype.com/?p=8394

The new NYT article page

I keep telling my publisher clients that the two destinations they should worry about are the article page and the video player page, instead of redesigning apps, homepages, editorial structures and navigations. The NYT seems to be working a lot on their article pages and even if you don't want to follow their ideas, the approach and the mentality behind are something to be aspiring to:

https://digiday.com/media/new-york-times-brings-unified-ad-editorial-approach-new-article-page/ 

A new Google News may try to beat filter bubbles

Google I/O was not only AI phone calls. The Google News app will be revamped, and two features are striking - the "full coverage" and "newscast". Both promise to give you a comprehensive look on news events by compiling video, articles and more from different sources on a single news topic. This may be a (pre-emptive) move over criticism on being responsible how me see the world. Also worth noting, if you saw the keynote, how much they emphasized towards publishers that "we come in peace" .-)

https://www.theverge.com/2018/5/8/17329074/google-news-update-new-features-newsstand-io-2018

A theory of economic impact of AI

A highly interesting, unique perspective offered by professor Ajay Agrawal looks at AI as means to decrease the cost of predictions. McKinsey took this thought and published what they call a "CEO guide to parsing and prioritizing AI opportunities". Interesting read and, unlike many AI articles, coming from a unique angle:

https://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/mckinsey-analytics/our-insights/the-economics-of-artificial-intelligence

2017 US digital advertising market numbers - 57% mobile, Google & Facebook landgrab slows down

According to the Internet advertising revenue report by the IAB (Internet Advertising Bureau), the US digital ad market is 88bn, 49,9bn of that in mobile (57%). The study also states that search makes up 46% of the market (mobile & desktop, 40bn, up from 34bn) - but down from 47% last year, so Google's search business has grown significantly, but the overall share hasn't. There are no stats on individual companies, but I believe that Amazon's growing ad business may also play a role here. More key facts from the article:

  • Digital video advertising is at 11.9bn with 33% growth (while banners make 27bn with 23% growth, 67% of it on mobile)
  • Mobile digital video contributes 6.2bn to the above mentioned 11.9bn - while growing 54%
  • Social advertising is 22.6bn, growing 36 percent on 2016
  • Digital audio grows 39% to 1.6bn


More here:
https://www.iab.com/news/digital-ad-spend-reaches-all-time-high-88-billion-2017-mobile-upswing-unabated-accounting-57-revenue/