Like Color, time for Airtime to get off the air

In today’s attention starved world, if you miss the chance to make an impression, people move onto something new. Doesn’t matter who you were and how much money you have in the bank – users decide who wins or loses. Airtime & Color are finding it out.

ShoeDazzle… no longer dazzling

ShoeDazzle had a great thing going with its shoes-as-a-subscription service, and then it decided to switch business models. Now it’s flailing, and people are pointing fingers at new CEO Bill Strauss, but it’s not quite that simple.

Sarah Lacy’s PandoDaily launches with $2.5 million in funding

Sarah Lacy, a book author and a veteran journalist (and most recently with TechCrunch) is launching PandoDaily, a daily technology news blog focused on startups and the startup ecosystem. The company is being funded by a $2.5 million investment from Silicon Valley elite.

Bottom Line: We’re All Watching More

Online Video Viewing Up 35.4 Percent Year-on-Year: Of 26,000 adults polled by Mediamark Research & Intelligence, 23.3 percent had watched online video in the past 30 days (which is actually a pretty low number as compared to data from comScore and others). In the same group, 3.2 percent said they’d downloaded a TV episode in the past 30 days, giving that segment an increase of 141 percent from 2007. (Variety)
88 Percent of U.S. Internet Users to Watch Online Video: See, here’s a way bigger number. eMarketer says the U.S. audience for online video will hit 190 million by 2012, up from 154.2 million in 2008. And viewers of online video advertising are forecast to keep pace, reaching 174.8 million in 2012, up from 129.5 million this year. (release)
Young People Watch More TV on the Web; 12 percent of U.S. teens and 11 percent of 18- to 34-year-olds watch online TV at least once a week, respectively, as compared to 4 percent of 35- to 64-year-olds, according to Knowledge Networks. Those 18- to 34-year-olds who watch online TV also spend 80 percent more time online than the rest of their demographic, and 1.25 hours per day more with all media. (release)
U.S. TV Viewing Hits All-Time High; Nielsen says the average American watched approximately 142 hours of TV per month in the third quarter, five hours more than a year ago. How is it that with the rise in online video, TV watching keeps going up, up, up? Well, the two are not mutually exclusive; some 31 percent of TV use is concurrent with Internet use, according to Nielsen. (release)
$32 Billion to Be Spent on Internet-TV-to-living-room Equipment by 2013: IMS Research says 300 million homes worldwide will have the ability to watch online video on their living-room TVs by 2013, up from 28 million in 2007. (IPTV News)

F|R: The 9 Signs of a One-hit Wonder

Many entrepreneurs fear being a flash-in-the-pan success — achieving an exit once, but never again. (Some might call this being lucky rather than good.) But while the allure of success inspires us to do great things, achieving it can have an ugly aftereffect: complacency. Vigilance, my friends, is the only path to serial-founder bliss. Here, in descending order, I offer nine leading indicators that you’re headed for one-hit wonderdom.

9. You went and got all tricked out.
I mean with your next business, not your fashion sense. But remember how you got your first hit — with a kindergarten-level UI that any neophyte could comprehend. Sure your friends called you Forrest Gump and sneered that you were lucky; that’s their problem. Trying to prove to your friends that you’re really, truly smart isn’t good business. Delivering a simple, usable concept that solves problems and makes money is. Read More about F|R: The 9 Signs of a One-hit Wonder

Networking: How to Work a Twitter Party

Networking has always been a high art in business. Just ask Susan Roane, my mentor and author of the seminal tome, “How to Work a Room.” (I know a handful of VCs and startup kings on Sand Hill Road who have her book tucked into a drawer.) I’ve been showcasing Roane’s lessons for founders in my Found|READ series, “What They Don’t Teach You At Stanford Business School.”

By now it’s time to address the latest, and arguably the most powerful, networking tool in any founders’ arsenal: Twitter. It’s simple. If you’re not “tweeting,” you’re missing half the conversation. Just ask Sarah Lacy. (How different Lacy’s now-infamous SXSW interview of Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg might have been had she been plugged into the tweets flying around the conference room floor!) Don’t know how to use Twitter? No sweat. Here are my 8 Tips for How to Work a Twitter Party.
(Photo credit: SXSW Tweeters celebrating before the ill-fated Zuckerberg interview.) Read More about Networking: How to Work a Twitter Party

8 Things Sarah Lacy Could Learn From Founders She Covers


So I was at SXSW this week, where I saw first hand the hilarious debacle of an interview that the lovely (but maybe over-hyped) Business Week reporter, Sarah Lacy, did with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. Read here for a short brief on the disaster, in which attendees,

…apparently tired of constant interruptions by Lacy and references to her own projects in the interview, essentially said they weren’t going to sit for such lame questions and demanded to ask their own.

One heckled her to coax “something interesting” out of Zuckerberg — which shouldn’t really be very hard: he is the youngest-ever self-made billionaire in the history of the world! The tweets were even worse.

So all this made me think: a) concerning her interview style, Lacy could learn a thing or two from the founders she (supposedly) spends so much time covering; and b) Lacy would never, ever, make it as a founder. But you know how journalists are these days — so I offer Lacy my “entrepreneurial” tips anyway. She’ll probably start a new media company soon.

1. When bullets fly, there is a time to duck and cover.The adversary has to reload sometime. It’s an honor thing. (You can read about it in history books.) So “Duck the 9’s”, that’s the 9mm stuff — a.k.a armor piercing ammo — and wait for the ebb and flow in the barage. It’ll do.

2. When you’re Captain of a ship taking on water
(i.e., MC of a keynote Q&A going south) don’t demoralize the crew with beatings. Lacy quipped to the crowd: “Do you think you could do better!?” Um, lemme think: … Yeesssss!! Because we actually care about audience. And a founder would never say ‘can you do better?’ when taking on water. The founder would say: “wow last month was really bad. Lets lick our wounds and get our rally going.” BONUS TIP for Lacy: Study Leno when a joke bombs; he’s the master of recovery. Read More about 8 Things Sarah Lacy Could Learn From Founders She Covers