I thought I’d experiment with a video blog entry. I’ve got no editing software here, so everything was straight to tape. Well, straight to bits. Anyway, if it seems to work ok I’ll scale it up! It runs for five minutes.
To summarise my main point: the business model for amazon.com did not become profitable until they were doing all three functions necessary in an information-based industry: Aggregate, Filter & Connect. Yesterday I talked about the importance of filtering in scientific publishing business models – but for amazon, the key function is connecting. In particular, the killer app for amazon is their relational database – this allows them to connect related items for people. Amazon was always good at aggregating, and they’ve tried a few different filtering methods, which have all been reasonably effective. But it was only when they added connecting that their business model took off.