Thursday, June 30, 2005

[[ZEIGEIST]] The Long tail
Here's some articles that introduced me to the "long tail" concept:

1/ Lessons from Silicon Valley
“The 20th Century mass production world was about dozens of markets of millions of people. The 21st Century is all about millions of markets of dozens of people.”

BBC Radio 4 and World Service Presenter Peter Day talks to Joe Kraus, one of the inventors of the excite search engine. Go to article

2/ The Long Tail By Chris Anderson
"For too long we've been suffering the tyranny of lowest-common-denominator fare, subjected to brain-dead summer blockbusters and manufactured pop. Why? Economics. Many of our assumptions about popular taste are actually artifacts of poor supply-and-demand matching - a market response to inefficient distribution….retailers will carry only content that can generate sufficient demand to earn its keep… An average record store needs to sell at least two copies of a CD per year to make it worth carrying; that's the rent for a half inch of shelf space…. With no shelf space to pay for and, in the case of purely digital services like iTunes, no manufacturing costs and hardly any distribution fees, a miss sold is just another sale, with the same margins as a hit. A hit and a miss are on equal economic footing, both just entries in a database called up on demand, both equally worthy of being carried. Suddenly, popularity no longer has a monopoly on profitability… Barnes & Noble carries 130,000 titles. Yet more than half of Amazon's book sales come from outside its top 130,000 titles. Consider the implication: If the Amazon statistics are any guide, the market for books that are not even sold in the average bookstore is larger than the market for those that are…

This is the long tail. Go to article

No comments: