Jan 22, 2007

Putting Customers before Profits

How can newspapers succeed?
"In Mr. Buckmaster's (CEO of Craigslist) view, newspapers would be better off being a little more Craigslist-like: Go private, eschew Wall Street's demands for continually 'goosing profitability' and give your readers what they want. Much trouble in the world comes, in Mr. Buckmaster's view, from losing sight of that essential goal."

From another article on when Buckmaster met Wall Street folks:
Craigslist charges money for job listings, but only in seven of the cities it serves ($75 in San Francisco; $25 in the others). And it charges for apartment listings in New York ($10 a pop). But that is just to pay expenses.

Mr. Schachter still did not seem to understand. How about running AdSense ads from Google? Craigslist has considered that, Mr. Buckmaster said. They even crunched the numbers, which were “quite staggering.” But users haven’t expressed an interest in seeing ads, so it is not going to happen.

Following the meeting, Mr. Schachter wrote a research note, flagged by Tech Trader Daily, which suggests that he still doesn’t quite get the concept of serving customers first, and worrying about revenues later, if at all (and nevermind profits). Craigslist, the analyst wrote, “does not fully monetize its traffic or services.”

Both links thanks to Thejo

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