Thursday, June 28, 2007

Online surpasses radio ads, user-generated content sites make more than $1.6 billion

It's been a while since we didn't bend back on numbers. Here are some good news on the online ad spend for 2007, coming from, that I wanted to share with you. If you don't want to read it all, here is a quick summary:
  • eMarketer is raising its 2007 forecast from $19.5 billion to $21.7 billion i.e. from 18.9% to 28.6% growth closer to the 30% growth seen for the last 3 years
  • they even see 2008 stronger with 30% growth to a total $28.8 billion, thanks to the US presidential elections
  • 2009 will slow down a bit to 18.1%,
but hey they've been pessimistic for 2007 so let's wait and see. Here is the quote I like most:
" Online advertising as a share of the total media budget will surpass radio this year, eMarketer said, and top 10% next year." -- Advertising Age, June 2007

Come on, one last to hit the road: WW user-generated content sites will earn $1.6 billion in ad revenue for 2007 moving to $8.2 billion in 2011, predicts eMarketer. Marketing 2.0 finally makes money, isn't it?

Saturday, June 23, 2007

We're moving from Desktop to Webtop

"Microsoft and IBM executives Wednesday admitted feeling heat from Google now that the Web search giant is trying to make inroads into the enterprise market with its hosted suite of communication and collaboration tools." says NetworkWorld.

Desktop productivity suites -- i.e. Microsoft and Open Office -- are beginning to appear as legacy apps for younger internet user generation. If you think about it, up to a few years ago, our desktop was application centric. You'd have to think about what application to use to either create, edit or read information. In this antic time, still valid for conservative users, Office was the place where we'd live on our desktop. Not anymore for Internet centric users, especially 15-24 years old.

Multimedia content, supported with the advent and success of Youtube, flickr,, and others not to forget podcasts, is paving the way to another information form factor. As a matter of fact, information streams to you via RSS feeds sitting on your desktop via Netvibes personal portal on the web and various widgets. Google apps are starting to give a clear headway towards SaaS collaborative "desktop" productivity applications, not to mention they've just completed another step in completeness with Tonic acquisition -- a presentation sharing and collaboration solution for Powerpoint slides.

To sum it up, I believe we've moved from Desktop to Webtop with several key implication:
  • Our digital environment is no more sitting on our PC but on the network,
  • Our environment is no longer application centric but user centric i.e. information is flowing your way whatever the application required to exploit it should be. Various alerts are pacing your information day from blogs, information sites, our mailbox and calendar,
  • Users are empowered to design their environment, not software vendors!
Webtop is a personalized web hosted desktop that you can use everywhere, from any device, that no software vendor would design for you. This is pure Web 2.0 attitude: users are designing their webtop "app" aggregating various components in an iterative and collaborative way -- users recommend widgets and apps to others. Gone the day when software vendors were dictating their view of the world. Folks, we're in charge again. And webtop already have vendors, check out Goowy.

Microsoft colleagues, can you feel the heat?

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Widgets reach 21% of the WW internet audience n April

Just a very quick one fellow marketers, I found out this number on AdvertisingAge and could not resist but share it with you. Widgets reached about 21% of the worldwide internet audience in April, ComScore -- who started to track widgets usage accross the web -- found. About 40% of widget use, or 81 million of those people, came from North America. (a cool slide sharing site) had the largest reach, followed by RockYou, Picturetrail and Photobucket, all photo sharing sites.

ComScore defines widgets as shockwave data files embedded into a site's HTML code.

"The reach that widgets have is going to surprise a lot of people," said Max Levchin, founder and CEO of Slide. "What advertisers are ultimately interested in is what are people looking at, not what page."

Widget advertising! So coool.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Google Gears: last mile to a 100% web based application world?

In a meeting recently, in my new job at Sage, we were discussing with R&D about the client model in our new world. Interesting debate among specialists that are seeing the world through RIA (Rich Internet Application), RDA (Rich Desktop Application) and the fading 100% HTML or client/server models. It clearly shows we've been moving fast in a connected world were web based applications are weaving into desktop based applications.

Tectonic moves are taking place between Microsoft, with the Silverlight new cross-platform and cross-browser Internet platform, Adobe's Apollo run-time and the newly announced Google Gears Javascript API to let web applications work off-line. Read Information Week Why Google Gears Is Good News, Bad News For Microsoft article for a better understanding of the landscape and browse through the 92 news articles about it.

But now the non connected world enters web based applications and the very last argument pleading for desktop based applications is just going away, even before being connected to the Internet will be as natural as receiving daylight (a bit futuristic I must admit, but you know me by now I like to provoke). Give it a try and install it. Are you as curious as I am to see what the next Google/Microsoft battle is going to be?

One thing for sure: user's information environment is already partly on the web and on his desktop. I'm not a big fan of this as users need to decide before searching or operating where the information might be or be sure they carry a laptop with them at all times. My bet is user's information are going to move 100% on the web with a solid secure access and backup. The device we will be using to access and manipulate this data is secondary and might just be borrowed when we need it.