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Posts Tagged ‘myspace’

Comparing Startup Performance

September 5, 2008 Leave a comment

Below is my answer to a post on VenCorps in regards to using Bizak to compare the performance of new startups to those of established web applications. – Tom

I definitely agree that a company in beta is not an apples to apples comparison to one that’s been around for 5 years. I’ve added a lot of parameters to the sort function (Industry, Type & Revenues) to give niche companies more of an opportunity to stand out but there will be cases where the comparisons might not be perfect. However, with growth additional industries & types can (and likely will) be added to the sort thus giving niches more exposure and individuality.

As for the maturity comparison it might be a good idea to add another parameter to the mix that allows one to sort (and compute) benchmarks according to age – for example the metrics for all of those companies in beta. That can then be broken down to all social networks in beta, etc. A visual of how the benchmarks look (and work) can be seen by the video at http://www.tokibiz.net/benchmarks.asp. Of course you can also view the usability of the site (for startups) by registering with Bizak.

Back to the established players, most of the startups who register with Bizak are relatively new. I’m sure over time the age of startups will increase but the big players like Facebook & YouTube will likely not want to reveal their numbers. As I mentioned above a lot of the ideas for Bizak came from the coverage and aggregation of financials (especially earnings) by Wall Street analysts. As you know analysts cover a particular stock and write reports on that stock forecasting their earnings & revenues expectations. Companies like Thomson First Call aggregate this data into “the street” for when the company announces earnings. Having been one of those analysts for 7 years it’s likely that at some point we’ll do our own research on the top internet companies and integrate those numbers into the database and/or create reports for sale integrating all of the data. Of course private firms are not required to reveal this information so a lot of digging will be needed to get costs and revenue data – traffic is obviously easy to find. Via my blog I’ve analyzed some of the big players including YouTubeFacebookMySpace, and for fun Twitter.

I’m a firm believer that internet startups need to also offer “offline” services to their mix. With Bizak I’ve been pleasantly surprised with the amount of services (in addition to the website) that I can see us offering startups in the future. The additional research (above) being one but also a startup’s need to create a professional business valuation/consultation when applying for funding is another. Also, the web development/incubation services that I offer via TOKiBiz is another – infoMedMD is an example of our first venture in this field.

Social Networks Worth

In a number of previous posts (below) I’ve used the Bizak Calculator to compute the revenue valuations of social networks and internet companies. These valuations put heavy emphasis on current revenues but it also gives credit for positive earnings per visitor (EPV).

Techcrunch recently compiled a very interesting (but at times very confusing) model on valuing social networks. The Techcrunch model values social networks according to the countries where individuals are using that application. They then use those numbers in conjunction with the internet advertising spending for each individual country to compute the value of social networks. Techcrunch can explain their math much better then me so read the Techcrunch article and compare them to the Bizak valuation of:

Other articles that focus on social networks include:

Articles focusing on Startups:

Myspace Revenues & Valuation Compared to Facebook

June 23, 2008 3 comments

Myspace RevenuesFacebook recently overtook the number one worldwide visitors title from Myspace but Rupert Murdoch & News Corp. are probably not concerned. In July 2005 News Corp. purchased Myspace for $580 million. This year Myspace is expected to generate 2008 revenues of $800 million. In comparison Facebook revenues for 2008 are expected to be $350 million.

Without costs that $800 million for Facebook equates to a $3.2 billion dollar valuation (source: Bizak’s business valuation) for Myspace. It turns out that Rupert made another very smart investment.

If you use the same costs figures for Myspace that I used for Facebook (approximately $26 million/year or $2,166,666.00/month) then we can get a better comparison.

Revenues: Myspace $800 Million, Facebook $350 Million

Earnings per Visitor: Myspace $1.08, Facebook $0.84*

*Facebook’s EPV is based on 32 million visitors. Change Facebook’s visitors to equal Myspace (60 million) and their EPV drops to $0.45

Valuation: Myspace $3.174 Billion, Facebook $1.374 Billion

Winner: Myspace & Rupert Murdoch

Visually Myspace is still very sloppy but they’re getting better – just in time for Rupert to sell Myspace for a huge profit.  Maybe experience does help when running a company??!!

Top Social Networks According to Traffic

March 12, 2008 Leave a comment

Top Social Networking Sites

Compete.com has a great post on the top social networking sites (according to traffic) for the month of February 2008.  I find the statistics to be fascinating and quite enlightening since some of these sites I’ve never heard of – for example CafeMom.com.  What I find fascinating is that Myspace is still very comfortable in the number one position.  I’m fascinated by this since I rarely hear anyone talk about Myspace (it’s always Facebook, Facebook, Facebook) and it’s such crap.  It is however a great tool for musicians (that’s good) and spammers (not so good).  Myspace has however seen negative year over year growth in comparison to Facebook’s 77%, so I would expect their top position to eventually be history.  My guess is that they’ll eventually drop out of the top ten and I assume they thought that too since Myspace has been cleaning up their site a lot these days – looking more and more like Facebook.  LinkedIn is also looking more and more like Facebook minus all the spam of Myspace and to a lesser extent Facebook.  LinkedIn is boring though.

I’m surprised to see that Classmates.com is still relevant!  I never use them but you have to give them props for being a top social network for over 13 years!!

Location Based Social Networking

February 24, 2008 5 comments

TechCrunch published an article on Saturday about when an iPhone only social network application will launch. This is called Location Based Social Networking and it basically utilizes the location tracking software of iPhones (any phone with GPS for that matter) to “discover” individuals in your immediate proximity.

Location based social networking is definitely not new or revolutionary but very difficult (financially and technically) to implement. Since I don’t have the deep deep pockets to implement this application I thought I would share my ideas for a new web and mobile phone application that is built around a location based social network.

Location Based Social Network (LBSN)

A location based social networking application connects people from within a location rather then friends of friends. With Facebook you make friends and then view their photos. With a LBSN application you connect via location (bar, restaurant, Fenway Park, etc.), then view photos based on that location. Friends are made not by connections but rather locations – people who have been to the same place as you.

Location

Facebook joins people with connections – who they know. A LBSN would make connections based on where we’ve been. Interactive maps “mark” a location (a bar, restaurant, concert hall, coffee shop, etc. ) The “mark” will then link to that location’s page (ie. Starbucks at Harvard Square) which contains a “news feed” of the latest photos/texts/videos captured from mobile devices at that location. The feed lists the most recent posts (photos, videos, text) to that location. Each post links to the profile of the subscriber who uploaded the photos/videos. You can then connect with the subscriber and add him/her to your friends list.

Sharing Posts from a Common Location

For example, college kids take a TON of pictures at bars – especially late at night. Everyone in the bar wants to see those pictures. Guys want to see pictures of the girls and the girls want to know who the guys are.

Say we are at Matt Murphy’s in Brookline Village. We log into LBSN with our mobile phone and it immediately knows our location to be Matt Murphy’s, Brookline. We then take a photo of our friends and send it to the social network. That photo automatically gets tagged according to location and gets added to the Matt Murphy’s (location) news feed for everyone to see. (Posts are also added to the subscriber’s news feed that both links to the post and the location where it was taken.)

Another guy at the end of the bar takes a video of his friends and sends it to LBSN. It too gets added to the Matt Murphy’s page for everyone to see. A girl sends a text to the LBSN commenting on the crowd at the bar.

Now everyone at Matt Murphy’s can view, watch and read the latest posts from the bar and comment back in real time. Their friends at home can log in via the web, view the Matt Murphy’s page and see all the fun they’re missing out on.

LBSN has become viral because it not only spreads via the web but also from word of mouth by individuals within the same location. A guy talking to a girl taking photos next to him wants to see them too so he registers with the social network right there at the bar.

The bar (location) has every incentive to promote their LBSN page. The more posts on their LBSN page (especially for bars) the more business it will draw. It’s a real time update of what’s happening right now at any given location. For those at home it’s sort of like a live web cam feed – but at NO cost to the location but of great benefit to them.

The bar (location) can also advertise specials on their LBSN page to promote repeat customers. The bar already knows that everyone has already been there so the potential (via advertising) to get them back is much easier. Advertisements can also be disguised as photos, texts and/or videos built directly into the news feed – seen both by those currently at the bar and at home.

Business

The same premise can work for business connections whether at a meeting, conference or trade show. Take a video of the conference and everyone at that location can view it. Advertisers can sneak business card into the news feed and the conference hall can promote upcoming events.

Music

A location based social networking application would work perfectly for concerts. Not only can people at the concerts view live photos from others but more importantly those at home can view videos of the event while it’s happening. Those at home can visit the Fenway Park location to view photos and videos of The Police show while it’s happening. If they don’t know where The Police are playing they can go directly to The Police LBSN page and (with tagging) see the real time feed from Fenway Park. They can also view previous videos from Madison Square Garden, Chicago and more.

History on Your Phone

By enabling the viewing of posts based on location you can in essence view the digital history of that location. If you’re standing in the middle of a ball field you can turn on your LBSN phone and view photos and videos from games past. While at the MFA you can view posts that others took when previous exhibits where on display. View photos from a party in your dorm room before you actually lived there.

A location based social networking application allows you to capture video/photos in real time and view the digital history of a particular location while at that location. YouTube, Flickr and Facebook display photos/videos from the past – location based social networking is right now!

Source: Tom O’Keefe at www.TOKiBiz.net. If you want to develop a location based social networking site, or want to help Tom fund, implement and/or develop a location based social network, then feel free to contact him at 617-947-8071 or the email above.

The Presidential Election & Technology

January 14, 2008 Leave a comment

Barack Obama’s Iowa victory speech doesn’t really have anything to do with technology unless of course you factor in how technology has changed (and is changing) the political landscape.  The internet is just a new form of media that began with the first ever televised presidential debate between VP Nixon and Senator John F. Kennedy.  Politically both Nixon and JFK were relatively equal however JFK’s charisma, eloquence and good looks made him a winner in this new medium of television.

Today the technology is much more advanced however charisma and eloquence are still as powerful as they were back in 1960.  YouTube, blogs, facebook and MySpace have changed media ownership.  No longer is the power in the hands of just CBS, ABC and NBC but now the media is in the hands of everyone.  With YouTube and blogs we all have the ability to broadcast and comment on this election.  With Facebook and MySpace we can become more connected and more involved then ever.

Whether you like Obama or not you have to agree that he gives us hope and inspiration.  It’s going to take a lot of inspiration for the next president to get us back on track. The ability to inspire Americans and the ability to inspire the world to once again be by our side. Obama may not have the experience but he has the ability to inspire all of us to use our voice like never before.

 

What (and Who) is Bizak?

January 8, 2008 Leave a comment

We at TOKiBiz are progressing nicely with the development of Bizak and we’ve recently published a PDF giving you a bit more information about Bizak.  The PDF also contains a slight glimpse of the web application.  Please feel free to download the PDF (via the link below), copy it to your computer and email it to your friends.

About Bizak

Homepagewww.Bizak.com