Sunday, January 27, 2002

b!x, I think you're coming at what I'm coming at, from a different angle. Gonzo, from my point of view, *isn't* about selling bleach, but most marketing dollars go for products like bleach, or toilet paper, or dishwasher detergent. Where I think Cluetrain is right, and Gonzo is wrong, is in being too literal about the nature of 'markets are conversations.' Human voices are expensive, and products like bleach don't do well with expensive marketing -- how much more bleach are you going to get someone to buy by engaging micromarkets? and at what cost?

Denver's answer is "I don't buy bleach on the net", but that misses the point -- just because he doesn't do something on the net doesn't mean no one does it. To takes Tom's call for examples, take a look at what Teso is doing with online groceries. Two points of note: their current home page features a contest relating to diswasher detergent -- doesn't get much more mass market than that -- and they are the world's biggest online grocery store, and growing like mad -- $450 million in revenues last year, $22M of which was profit.

So Denver's idea that the net is inherently inimical to mass marketing seems to me to be off the mark -- if people are making money doing it, it isn't going away. Tesco is making money doing it, as is Wal-Mart, and Amazon, etc. In this view, Gonzo is an addition to the marketing mix, not a replacement.

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