Media’s Future Will Follow Markets’

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413 x 239.pages copyBack in 1991, when I was freelancing, casting central newsman Bob Flaherty, then of Equities magazine and now head of his own financial news service, told me to get on a train to New York, visit the offices of something called Instinet and write a story about it.

Institnet, owned by Reuters at the time, was shaking up the trading business with its recently introduced “crossing” system which allowed institutional investors to trade directly with each other, effectively bypassing the exchanges and stock markets. read more

Use Your Perch To Get Media Exposure 

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413 x 239.pages copyAll businesses occupy a perch. By that I mean the manner in which their business operates throws off data that sheds light on their industry, competitors, suppliers or customers. Here’s some examples:

•The number of times men click the profiles of fair-haired women on match.com answers the question whether or not gentleman do prefer blonds. Similarly knowing how beards fare in the romantic ecosystem might offer a clue about how long the current trend in facial hair is going to last.

•The average cash balances of a wealth manager’s clients over time sheds light on whether investors are growing more conservative or more speculative. read more

Generals Don’t Inspect The Bullets

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IMG_0713As the content arms race rolls on, I’m beginning suspect that some CMOs are getting off track in their approach to content marketing.

Too much oversight.  Too much strategy. Too much handwringing.

In my experience, the primary value of content marketing is catching a prospect at the moment they happen to be searching for the product or service your enterprise offers.  And in search, one of the primary variables driving rank is freshness.

Catching a prospect mid-search means, for better or worse, content distributed across social media platforms is nothing more than a rifle shot.   The only consideration after it’s been fired, beyond a brief evaluation of its effectiveness, is loading up the chamber and firing another. read more

What does Jack Dorsey see?

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At this point, I’m not sure.

Not to say that Mr. Dorsey will not earn his place in the pantheon of Silicon Valley legends.  He will.

What I’m less sure about is his understanding of the capital markets.   So after taking Twitter public, is he going to take mobile payments company Square, public too?

My read of Twitter’s income statement and balance sheet indicates they have not used the proceeds from their $1.8 billion IPO efficiently (or even completely).  Research and development expenses went from $594 mm in 2013 to $691 mm in 2014.  Marketing expenses went from $316 mm to $614 mm.   Even though Twitter posted a $577 mm loss in 2014, on a cash basis, its operating activities threw off $81 mm in cash. read more