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September 18th, 2006
I am familiar with the concept of long tail for months. But I have found time to read the original article printed by wired.com months, years back just now (I know that there is a published book available by now).
But it is better late than never. And I admit that I should have done it sooner. A few samples that illustrate the concept of long tail:
Chart Rhapsody’s monthly statistics and you get a “power law” demand curve that looks much like any record store’s, with huge appeal for the top tracks, tailing off quickly for less popular ones. But a really interesting thing happens once you dig below the top 40,000 tracks, which is about the amount of the fluid inventory (the albums carried that will eventually be sold) of the average real-world record store. Here, the Wal-Marts of the world go to zero – either they don’t carry any more CDs, or the few potential local takers for such fringy fare never find it or never even enter the store.
The Rhapsody demand, however, keeps going. Not only is every one of Rhapsody’s top 100,000 tracks streamed at least once each month, the same is true for its top 200,000, top 300,000, and top 400,000. As fast as Rhapsody adds tracks to its library, those songs find an audience, even if it’s just a few people a month, somewhere in the country.
And here is one more:
Just compare online and offline businesses: The average Blockbuster carries fewer than 3,000 DVDs. Yet a fifth of Netflix rentals are outside its top 3,000 titles. Rhapsody streams more songs each month beyond its top 10,000 than it does its top 10,000. In each case, the market that lies outside the reach of the physical retailer is big and getting bigger.
Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, who’s something of a documentary buff, took this newfound clout to PBS, which had produced Daughter From Danang, a documentary about the children of US soldiers and Vietnamese women. In 2002, the film was nominated for an Oscar and was named best documentary at Sundance, but PBS had no plans to release it on DVD. Hastings offered to handle the manufacturing and distribution if PBS would make it available as a Netflix exclusive. Now Daughter From Danang consistently ranks in the top 15 on Netflix documentary charts. That amounts to a market of tens of thousands of documentary renters that did not otherwise exist.
There are any number of equally attractive genres and subgenres neglected by the traditional DVD channels: foreign films, anime, independent movies, British television dramas, old American TV sitcoms. These underserved markets make up a big chunk of Netflix rentals. Bollywood alone accounts for nearly 100,000 rentals each month. The availability of offbeat content drives new customers to Netflix – and anything that cuts the cost of customer acquisition is gold for a subscription business. Thus the company’s first lesson: Embrace niches.
The rules of long tail:
RULE 1: make everything available
RULE 2: cut the price in half
RULE 3: help me find it
Summary: How can an average online entrepreneur make use of long tail concept? It is not easy to figure out, but depends on your website niche. The article gives fantastic samples for online music and movie dealers.
I run a relatively new rock music website that fits this long tail idea perfectly. It offers digital music as an affiliate of iTunes, now I try to figure out how to promote the music of unsigned bands – long tail (MySpace has recently announced their intention to sell downloadale music of unsigned bands – so, I have very powerful competitors in my niche. I am kidding – certainly, I can’t compete with MySpace, but need to find my small niche).
The long tail concept author states that it is applicable for the media and entertainment industries. So, it is not universal. I wish it were. But I am sure that this concept requires hours and hours of contemplation – how to make it work for your projects.
[tags]long tail, social bookmarking, web 2.0, domain names, links buying, myspace, seo, internet marketing, affiliate marketing, blogs, content generation, make money online, work from home, home based job, earn your living online[/tags]
September 18th, 2006
I was unaware of this affiliate network until I became a regular of the forum where this network is regularly discussed. Imagine my surprise to discover that AzoogleAds is #1 ranked CPA affiliate network by a number of authority resources. I was sure that CJ, LinkShare and Performics are top players in the industry:
AzoogleAds.com was quite honored to recently be ranked #1 Affiliate Company in 2004, by industry newsletter Adbumb, and 25,000 online media experts.
Read the news article here:
A Winning Profile
Since 2000, AzoogleAds™ has grown in leaps and bounds. Our advanced network of websites, and publishers has grown to over 2,500 hand picked and constantly monitored partners. This online reach, helps draw in over 100 top tier advertising partners, many Fortune™ 1000 and 500 companies. Our proprietary backbone of technology and sites, tracks over 1.7mm unique transactions, with 100mm unique click-thrus monthly, ranking us amongst the top tier online advertising networks.
Application process is neither so easy nor fast with AzoogleAds. It was much easier to get approved with the three mentioned services. I had to contact AzoogleAds a few times, to complete an online form and e-mail questionnaire, mail them my tax information, then contact them by e-mil again. One more e-mail. Finally a message with ‘you are approved; our manager will get in touch with you shortly’.
I logged into my account to browse the offers that are divided into categories. Some categories make this affiliate network different from its top competitors (these offers attract numerous webmasters eager to set up relations with AzoogleAds as publishers):
My research for tips on working with this affiliate network did not return many results (that make me wonder why top ranked affiliate network does not generate much online buzz and discussions in the forums and blog posts). The forum is likely to be the best source for ideas and advice on AzoogleAds – probably it has some kind of relations with the affiliate network – (though there are other mentions of the affiliate network) at this point in time:
- how to find good offers with AzoogleAds
- how to make quick buck with AzoogleAds
- useful AzoogleAds tips
- incentivizing offers
Summary: In general AzoogleAds functions the same way as CJ or any other CPA affiliate network. The categories I mentioned make it unique and help webmasters to get high conversions from running their promotions (according to their posts).
Other benefits you get from the network – net 15 payouts and great customer support.
The process of approval is neither easy nor fast. Is it worth your time and efforts? It depends on the type of web property you run. But I do not doubt that it is worth experimenting – you can sign up here (aff.)
[tags]azoogleads, cpa, affiliate networks, social bookmarking, web 2.0, domain names, links buying, myspace, seo, internet marketing, affiliate marketing, blogs, content generation, make money online, work from home, home based job, earn your living online[/tags]
September 15th, 2006
I adore del.icio.us. It is a simple and brilliant service that saves a lot of time and it is free.
To tell the truth, I do not remember when I used Google or any other search engine for the last time – probably just to check ranking positions of my websites. In case I need information I can trust and find fast I go to del.icio.us and browse the website literally for hours discovering more and more fantastic resources, applications and services in miscellaneous industries.
Some facts from the history:
The website del.icio.us (pronounced as “delicious”) is a social bookmarking web service for storing, sharing, and discovering web bookmarks. The site came online in late 2003 and was founded by Joshua Schachter, co-maintainer of Memepool.
A non-hierarchical keyword categorization system is used on del.icio.us where users can tag each of their bookmarks with a number of freely chosen keywords (cf. folksonomy). A combined view of everyone’s bookmarks with a given tag is available; for instance, the URL “http://del.icio.us/tag/wiki” displays all of the most recent links tagged “wiki”. Its collective nature makes it possible to view bookmarks added by similar-minded users.
I recommend you checking these very useful resources to get more benefits from the website:
Several Habits of Wildly Successful del.icio.us Users
Become a del.icio.us Power User
Absolutely Del.icio.us Tools Collection
del.icio.us is one website from the list of social websites. In my case it is the most useful. I can easily do without others from the list, but I explore del.icio.us daily.
Why do I prefer it to Google and other search engines? Because it returns much better results. For instance, if I browse by keywords I also pay attention to how many people bookmarked this page. If it shows a high number of people I am sure that it is a good and reliable source. And I am sure that it is not an artificial bookmarks – digg.com (just another popular social website) is regularly criticized for its not quite objective way to feature website users’ content and news).
Summary: Well, I do not think that 100% persons share my excitement about this service, but most do, otherwise Yahoo! would not bother buying this service on December 2005.
[tags]del.icio.us, social bookmarking, web 2.0, domain names, links buying, myspace, seo, internet marketing, affiliate marketing, blogs, content generation, make money online, work from home, home based job, earn your living online[/tags]