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Russell Perkins
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I have long advocated for something I modestly call "Perkins' Law." It holds that "No company outside the information industry will voluntarily build and maintain a database if there is a viable alternative to doing so." Over the years, I have found this posit to hold up pretty well. Indeed,... Continue reading
Posted Nov 16, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
TechCrunch posted a long and thoughtful analysis of LinkedIn this week. In short, it suggests that LinkedIn is at risk from a growing number of vertical market professional networking sites, and faces a "death by a thousand cuts." The risk of being "sliced and diced" is real. Any horizontal provider... Continue reading
Posted Nov 9, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
A fascinating article in Technology Review highlights and quantifies a problem that is also an opportunity: disappearing data. The article reports on the findings of a new research study of social media that finds that in an analysis of recent major cultural events (e.g. Arab Spring), 11% of the social... Continue reading
Posted Sep 21, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
As Twitter continues to grow, so does the use of hashtags (those keywords and concepts in tweets preceded by the # symbol). But hashtags can help or hurt your goal of maximum visibility for your tweets. A couple tips based on observation and some quick research: Use them judiciously Use... Continue reading
Posted Aug 24, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
Yes, I just made up a new buzzword, micro-monetization, which is meant to describe a huge trend online to create services to monetize things that previously couldn't be monetized because they were too fleeting, too small or too difficult to bring buyer and seller together. It's a fascinating area full... Continue reading
Posted Aug 17, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
Sentiment analysis represents a real opportunity for many data publishers to add new, high-value, proprietary and even real-time insight to their data products. But sentiment analysis has inherent strengths and weaknesses you need to appreciate when considering if there is a sentiment analysis opportunity for your data products. A wonderful... Continue reading
Posted Aug 10, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
Looking for change, challenge, growth? Increased innovation across your organization? New content models and revenue? A new audience acquisition strategy? The ability to knock out the competition? Then think about giving third party developers to access to your content and data in a structured and open manner via APIs --... Continue reading
Posted Jul 27, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
Monitoring what's going on with online start-ups is not only a great way for me to identify interesting new data-driven products and new market opportunities, it's also a touchstone for assessing how the publishing industry is doing relative to the best and brightest online innovators. Here are just three recent... Continue reading
Posted Jul 20, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
On June 29, Twitter and LinkedIn decided to end a partnership that began in 2009. Before the 29th, tweets had the ability to flow seamlessly from Twitter to LinkedIn. That's no longer possible. Twitter has restricted its API to prevent tweets from posting to LinkedIn user profiles. LinkedIn users can... Continue reading
Posted Jul 13, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
LinkedIn is one of the most important data products ever created, and the recent Fortune interview with LinkedIn CEO Jeff Weiner is chock-full of insights and fresh thinking. I can't do justice to the full interview in one post, but here are a few points to whet your appetite: 1.... Continue reading
Posted Jun 22, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
Google may be a lot of things, but it's certainly not boring. Just this week in fact, it did several interesting revenue model back-flips, changing one product to free and making another one paid. Let's start with Zagat. Zagat sells its content, in print and online. Not a revenue model... Continue reading
Posted Jun 1, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
A New York Times article this week, entitled "From Search, to Fetch," describes moves by both Google and Bing to get you to an answer faster. Called the "Knowledge Graph" by Google and "Snapshot" by Bing, you'll find that searches for certain types of information will now bring you a... Continue reading
Posted May 25, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
One of the key markets for all the new big data analytics providers is marketers themselves, a group that should be a natural for turning deep customer insight into increased revenue. But are they ready? Well, according to a study by Columbia Business School and the New York American Marketing... Continue reading
Posted May 18, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
Imagine a business based on a mash-up of social media, analytics and ratings. And that's exactly where a company called Klout plays. Klout exists to assess your social media importance. Using advanced algorithms, it looks at how active you are in social media, how big your audience is, how influential... Continue reading
Posted May 11, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
If you're not measuring your data in petabytes and exabytes, you're not truly in the world of Big Data, at least according to the purists. But increasingly, big data has come to mean the powerful analysis of much more reasonably-sized datasets, and that's where big data becomes a tool for... Continue reading
Posted May 4, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
The travails of the traditional yellow pages industry are serious, with no end in sight. There are some interesting lessons and insights that can be drawn from the remarkable and relatively rapid meltdown of this seemingly bulletproof and impossibly profitable segment of the data publishing industry. What made yellow pages... Continue reading
Posted Apr 27, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
I have long been interested in the fine line that often divides marketplaces and buying guides, a topic that I am sure keeps all of us up at night at least every so often. A string of recent new website announcements has me back thinking about this again. As I... Continue reading
Posted Apr 20, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
Clay Shirky, the well-known professor at the renowned Interactive Telecommunications Program at NYU, in a recent interview gave this summation of the publishing industry: "Publishing is not evolving. Publishing is going away. Because the word “publishing” means a cadre of professionals who are taking on the incredible difficulty and complexity... Continue reading
Posted Apr 13, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
A new report released by the Federal Trade Commission this week makes a strong case for increased online consumer privacy protection. This report builds on the "Consumer Data Privacy Bill of Rights" issued by the White House last month. The White House document is largely aspirational, setting general goals such... Continue reading
Posted Mar 30, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
It's been well-known for many years that Google periodically alters its search algorithms. These changes are made for two reasons: to improve the quality of search results, and to push back against those sites that it believes are gaming the system. To Google, gaming the system means that a website... Continue reading
Posted Mar 23, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
I got a call from the new postmaster at our local post office the other day. Her staff had apparently discovered a sizable stack of year-old nixies from our conference promotions, and wanted to know if I would still be interested in them, for the requisite fee of course. After... Continue reading
Posted Mar 16, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
I am constantly reviewing new online data products looking for fresh ideas and innovative business models. I do see both, but increasingly I am seeing more lazy and uninspired products. They are also formulaic . Here's the recipe: grab some public domain database, add some modest value to it (sometimes... Continue reading
Posted Feb 10, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
I was fascinated an intrigued to read about a start-up company called Inbound Score that is literally just opening for business. Its business is simple but powerful: it takes email sales leads and automatically scores them for you. In a simple application, supposed you have a "contact us" form on... Continue reading
Posted Jan 21, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
Most of us are familiar with the incredible success story of our 2004 Model of Excellence winner, the Internet Movie Database (IMDB). IMDB began life as a Usenet group list, morphing into arguably the first example of a database built with user-generated content. In 1998, the non-profit hobbyist venture was... Continue reading
Posted Jan 13, 2012 at The InfoCommerce Blog
Buying guides and call tracking have a long history together. For over 30 years, buying guide publishers have used various types of call tracking to help document response to advertisers. This is particularly important to these publishers, because buying guide advertising is sold primarily on its ability to generate direct... Continue reading
Posted Dec 16, 2011 at The InfoCommerce Blog