July 2005 Archives
I see that Russ Horowitz's Marchex has purchased yet another specialty service that helps organizations market themselves in the Search space. I have written about Russ many times in this space and continue to think that Marchex is a company that will increasingly be a power in the Search space.
I want to point out that I do not own shares in Russ' company (I did own shares up to several months ago). Russ appears to be doing a "roll up" of specialty service companies in the Search arena. Nobody else is attacking from this angle.
And while on the subject of Search I must give you an update on our forthcoming SES San Jose trade show starting 8 August. Through the end of business on Thursday, it appears that paid seminar attendees will rise about 45% over the 2004 total; exhibition space is also up about the same percentage. SES San Jose should be our most spectacular Search event yet. The SES juggernaut continues to thrive and shows no indication of slowing down.
Check out comments about my recent Getty Images post on About The Image. And while on the subject of comments, there is a paucity of information relating to the commercial image business.
For those interested you might find our graphics.com and TheCreativeForum.com Web sites to be interesting reads. Another of our Web sites that is related to images is called Megapixel.net. Also we now own two magazines: StepInsideDesign and DynamicsGraphics. We will shortly be offering redesigned sites for both books with lots of original information.
Our goal at JupiterImages is not only to be the best place to purchase all types and levels of commercial images but to also be the center of objective design and creative information for professionals and those interested in the business of design.
Also of interest is that The Wall Street Journal story reported that one of Zazzle's best assets is that it has 500,000 digitized images. Makes me laugh when I realize that we at Jupitermedia own over 7 million digitized images (I doubt Zazzle owns any of the images, but rather it licenses them?).
Also, Zazzle has to worry about a lot of warehousing and physical inventory. I have fallen in love with ecommerce businesses such as our images division in which most of our inventory is digital-lots of ones and zeroes!
I am not a big fan of the ultimate commercial value of Social Networks. I could be very wrong, but we shall see. Based on my opening statement, you can see where this post is going.
I do not know Intermix well, but I saw that they posted about $4.5 million of profit on about $78 million of sales. Murdoch and Co. paid $580 million for the operation.
So what did News Corp. get? Based on quotes from various sources at News Corp. they seem to be most pleased with increasing their Web traffic. One source stated that they had doubled their page views etc. This statement made me wince. Perhaps News Corp. is back in the 1990s and they think the just bought The Globe and Tripod?
I thought that most people had learned since 2000 that traffic does not mean revenue (and or profits). Contrast this purchase with The New York Times buying About.com or Dow Jones' purchase of Marketwatch.com. Both of these media giants paid huge premiums, but they bought real businesses.
Our David Card of JupiterResearch was quoted in The Wall Street Jorunal that Intermix was the "social network flavor of the month." I would suggest that David was on the mark.
I have been in the Internet space since 1990. The most prescient writer about the Internet during this period has been John Markoff of The New York Times. For example, in December 1993 he wrote a seminal piece on the birth of the World Wide Web. I remember reading this article and thinking that Markoff was telling us that the previously "all text" Internet was going "multimedia."
Today John has a terrific article in The Times called "Marrying Maps To Data For A New Web Service." The article concisely "maps" the plans for Google, Yahoo and Microsoft in this new growth area for search. There is also reference to a new map service called housingmaps.com.
Housingmaps.com is just the kind of Web site that appears out of nowhere and overnight becomes a darling and then hugely valuable. Most likely the owner already has millions of VC money being thrown at him as a result of this article!
One quote from the Markoff article about the potential for maps and local search is worth providing: "There are billions of dollars of commerce down the road. It will be an advertising-supported model which is an ephiphany for many people." (Chris Churchill, Fathom Online, A search engine advertising firm in New York City.)
I have mentioned Jim Pickerell's paid subscription service as one of the better places to obtain analysis about the stock image business.
Pickerell has a report out this week on what Getty Images has supposedly been doing to apply pressure and restrict Image companies that distribute photos through Getty Images from working with Corbis and or Jupitermedia.
We at Jupitermedia believe in an even playing field in which one competes on the merits of one's offerings and does not have to resort to storm trooper tactics in an attempt to prevent competition in the marketplace.
We launched a new Blog today which is devoted to our Search Engine Strategies trade shows. We now have three USA SES shows (New York, Chicago and San Jose). We are about to announce a SES for Paris, France (this November) to go along with Canada, England, Germany, Japan and Sweden). Also expect announcements of launches in 2006 in Italy, China, Australia and more.
All of the above combined with our clickz network of Web sites makes Jupitermedia the dominant company covering interactive marketing and Search. It is quite amazing to me how this all came together over the previous 8 years -- starting with the acquisition of searchenginewatch.com in 1997. We had no idea back then that Search would be the killer application of the Internet. Nor did we have such an inkling back in 2001 when we launched the first SES show or when we purchased clickz.com in September of 2000.
Think of all the traditional print media companies that missed the boat in covering this area ranging from Ziff Davis, CMP Media, IDG, VNU and Crains. Reliance on print is the factor of why these guys missed the boat and we hit the jackpot. People want such news online and not in print.
By the way I am writing this late at night in Paris, France. I am on the road once again hitting several European cities for the remainder of the week. It is Bastille Day in France tomorrow (today). Should be quite an experience to have a work day in the middle of wild celebration.
I have been playing around with desktop search software since dropping Google's service.
With the help of our Chief Technology Officer, Mark Berns, we have concluded that the new MSN service is the way to go. We tried several other services that many kind readers suggested, but MSN seems to be the least clunky and the least intrusive. I will let you know how MSN performs over the coming weeks.
Thanks again to all those readers who made valuable suggestions.
JudysBook is a neat coupling of local search and social networking -both growth areas. JudysBook is also representative of the billions to be made by thousands of ventures that are developing throughout the world to capitalize on the coming local search boom. One has to figure that the whole yellow page business is up for grabs. The players in this land rush are the present yellow page owners as well JudysBook and thousands more like it. The real question is this: will another "Google" rise out of the mix or will Google, Yahoo or some other established large Search player capture the local search market?
I just returned from Pasadena after visiting the PictureArts offices with several members of our JupiterImages team. We do not close the PA deal until later in the month, but both sides are working as a "well oiled machine." When we do close, the combination of JI and PictureArts will be hitting on all cylinders.
Jeff Burke, CEO of PictureArts, has attracted a fabulous and dedicated group of image professionals. We look forward to working with Jeff and team.
I saw a neat graphic presentation in a blog called About The Image --take a look (entry of July 1).
Many of you know that Jupitermedia comprises four divisions. One is called Jupiterimages. On Friday we announced that we had signed an agreement to acquire specialty image producer Picture Arts of South Pasadena, California.
There are very few publications, online or in print, that report on the commerical image business. Jim Pickerell has about the best service that reports on the stock photo industry. I subscribe to the Pickerell service and was interested in his report on our Picture Arts agreement(which I have permission to reprint).
I remind readers that we have a signed agreement for Picture Arts, but that the acquisition will not be completed until we get approval from the Federal Government (Hart, Scott Rodino). Once we have completed this acquisition, I am going to spend more time with this blog delving into the Internet and the sale of stock photos.