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Subject: RE: [uk-netmarketing] Re: The Rules
From: Mat Morrison
Date: Fri, 26 Jan 2001 19:07:57 -0000

[Sam says: warning! this is a long post]

The frames issue seems to be resolving itself. Those old-skool people with
experience on their side, and a deep understanding of both what the web is
for and how it works seem to be fighting my battle for me.

There are a few issues of CLARITY that are being uncovered. I think that
maybe some of these rules aren't exactly self-explanatory.

But, on the whole, they are intended to be new media marketing rules, rather
than "web" rules. You may be thinking a little close to the website build
business -- and (to be fair) why wouldn't you? A website is, however, only
part of the picture.

I'm using Ben's critique as a staging post to try and clear things up. I
will rewrite these.

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Ben Thompson [benatbabyhippo [dot] com (mailto:benatbabyhippo [dot] com)]
> Sent: Wednesday, January 24, 2001 11:28 PM
> To: uk-netmarketing from chinwag
> Subject: [uk-netmarketing] Re: The Rules
> On Wed, Jan 24, 2001 at 08:15:26PM -0000, Mat Morrison wrote:
> And some comments, but as I know the value Mat will place on
> them I'll be outspoken.
> >
> >
> > Open systems, good; closed systems, bad
> It's all about support and easy of enhancement. Open systems
> are fine provided you have or can afford the staff or
> consultants to support them. [deletia]

Sorry. Not talking software here. Talking about business models. A lot of
product businesses try to "own" the audience, develop artificial
"stickiness", refuse to share information -- even when it is to their
advantage. Witness eBay's moves to restrict biddersedge.com -- a symbiotic
relationship. And witness the success of the Progressive Insurance model
(sell competitors' products -- attracting audience and information). You
can't be protective in this marketplace -- advantage comes from linking,
intermediating, and sharing. We can argue this point, but I'd rather not.

> > If you want to sell it, it should fit through the letterbox
> Hmm, only works for small cheap items where delivery does not
> require a signature. [deletia]

Sorry -- the "letterbox" here is being used almost figuratively. What I was
trying to get across is that (a) you must consider the physical aspects of
the business. Let me pitch you a business: "I want to sell high street
clothes at high street prices but you can't try them on, and I'll deliver
them three days later".

> > Take the product to the customer, don't bring the customer
> to the product

Thinking of restating this as "Take the proposition to the consumer, don't
bring the consumer to the proposition".

Your audience is out there doing things. Put your product/proposition in
front of them. Don't compete with the telcos, ISPs and portals at their own
business. Don't build a "Heinz Baked Beans" shop, a "Persil Automatic" shop.
Do deals with retailers for distribution. Manage your channel.

Of course you can build a website. But don't obsess about it and miss the
main opportunity.

> > Frames restrict access,
> don't aid navigation and confuse search engines totally.

Yeah. Think this one's covered, now.

> > Commercial communities aren't.
> Communities are what their members want them to be. Motley
> Fool is a commercial entity but it is very much a community.
> The book reviews in Amazon could be called a community.

Lack of clarity. I have a lot of product based clients who'd like to build a
"Community". They've read Hagel & Singer, and they're probably listening a
little closely to McKinsey's et al. who have a bee in their bonnet about

What I mean is -- A "Persil Automatic Washing Community" is doomed to
failure. As is a "Heinz Baked Beans Kids 'n' Parents Community". Product &
Brand Managers should think hard about this. There are UKNM people --
please think hard before exposing yourselves to ridicule by debating this
point, or telling us about your 'case studies'.

> > All splash screens are evil
> But not as bad as poorly implement flash detection or worse
> flash based splash screens.

Only Robin Edwards has tried to debate this, I think. There's an old arab
saying: "Even a cockroach is a gazelle in it's mother's eyes".

> Pop-up window adverts are of course the spawn of the devil.

Yes. Yes. But I can't say that until I stop our creatives doing them
whenever I'm not looking.

> > The last thing people want is more websites.
> More good websites will be fine. More dedicated, specialised
> websites fine.[deletia]

You're missing the point, all of you, I think, who called me on this. Nobody
wakes up and thinks: "What I need is for someone to start a site about X".
What they do think is: "I need to know more about X", "I need better
service", "I wish Yahoo! would do something about Y". Their needs & wants
are NOT the same as the solution.

> > What counts is traffic through your server, not traffic
> through your web
> > site.
> What counts is loyal customers and visitors that contribute
> something. It may be cash, content or recommending other
> customers. [deletia, especially the "pratt" bit]

Sorry -- reference to white-labels, distribution rebadges, in situ affiliate
partnerships etc. We have a LOVELY client, 75% of whose significant traffic
comes from three nice portal deals we negotiated for them. That 75% is
primarily branded in the livery of the referring portal. If we removed ALL
references to our client's brand, we'd probably keep that 75% traffic. And
if we keep the traffic, then we keep the revenues & marketing data that
those people bring in. No?

> > A website is just one way of letting people play with your
> information.
> and possibly less embarrassing.

V. funny. But this hasn't met with much of a challenge.

> > Online, brand is a function of utility
> Pass, but the usual methods of branding (TV adverts,
> radio...) are far to expensive for a discount cheap medium.
> The land grab has finished and it appears that AOL, Yahoo and
> Amazon have won.

(Yes) Even Robin didn't challenge this. Good.

> > The online equivalent of space is time. Don't waste people's time.

> But time is money and they are still interchangable. The 1995
> ideal that shopbots and other agents would destroy the
> economic theories on cost of information hasn't come to pass.

Yeah. Whatever. Robin's point re: "Entertainment Sites" isn't relevant to my
marketing perspective. These are rules for marketeers, not showbiz people.

> > Don't be big brother.
> Do onto others as you would have done unto you.

No argument here.
> > Our busines is people, not demographics
> Demographics hide trends. However people are too random and
> small. Groups are easier to deal with.

Demographics <> Groups. People often plan by numbers, rather than thinking
about the kind of person they're trying to talk to.

> And as a final thought:-
> Everything I've learnt online comes from the porn industry.

Me too. Me too.

  Re: [uk-netmarketing] Re: The Rules, Robin Edwards

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