Monthly Archives: February 2008
The moving forward strategy for Yahoo has been something I’ve pondered the last couple of years as Yahoo the portal, start-page, search engine company has been losing steam. In a post a few months ago, I noted Yahoo should invest its money in the best online beat writers out there and make Yahoo the premiere content source on the web. Get the best sports writer, fashion writer, political analyst, etc. and using the language of the web and bloggers, turn Yahoo into the “first” read of the Web. In thinking this way I ceded search to Google, but I have always been a “content is king” guy.
Jerry Yang today announced his intent to not go quietly in the area of search, introducing Buzz which will improve Yahoo’s search capability and the richness of its results. This is a fight, and a focus, they should have had a couple of years ago. Yahoo is still all over the place. Ford makes cars and trucks and can’t get out of its own way. Imagine a company that has 3 or 4 missions.
In one of the world’s largest cities, in on of the world’s greatest newspapers, there is a serious recession going on. A recession of content. On Sunday February 24th and today, February 25th , the New York Times Metro section contained 8 pages. That’s 2 broadsheet folios. What’s up with that? Does the Times not have enough metro reporters to write stories? We certainly have enough people, neighborhoods and stories to generate many more pages. Are New Yorker’s looking to the Daily News and NY Post for their local news? Is ad revenue so far down that the Times can’t fill up 12 pages in the one section devoted to the New York area?
According to Stuart Elliott, the advertising columnist for The New York Times, J. C. Penny is launching a new clothing and home furnishings line called American Living. Using product designs by Ralph Lauren, whose name and sub-brands will not be associated with the new brand, the American Living launch will look and feel like Polo ads and be shot by Bruce Weber the photographer who has established Ralph Lauren’s consumer face.
One of the reasons U.S. Airways has had such a rocky time over the years is because of all its purchases and mergers. In order to strengthen itself, U.S. Airways allied with various other carriers with different regional and national strengths, but those multiple mergers proved its downfall. It was always hard to manage all of the different planes in the combined company.
When new airline carriers start from scratch they purchase one, maybe two types of plane. The parts work for all the planes, the maintenance for all planes is the same, engines come from one manufacturer, training for pilots is simplified, and there is less complexity in the day-to-day management. It is a very efficient way to run an airline. U.S. Airways, on the other hand, was the maestro of a cacophony planes, maintenance operations, equipment, and people trained in the various aspects of this patched together airline. Not efficient.
Ford Motor Company has made a decision to manufacture one of its car models — the Fiesta — the exact same way in every country around the world. That’s efficient. For the most part this is how