It’s been growing on me slowly, but in the last couple of months I’ve a “duh” (or maybe a “doh”) moment: it’s not content that’s king online, it’s audience.
Property after property succeeds — either as a business or an exit — because it draws and keeps an audience.
Content is one way to do that, but there are others. Facebook doesn’t draw an audience because it’s social, but because it does something very compelling with the social medium that draws and keeps an audience. MySpace drew an audience, but didn’t stay compelling and didn’t keep them.
Fads can draw an audience. I think of Twitter more as a “flash-fad” generator than a social medium. Something outrageous — Charlie Sheen, Osama’s death, whatever — draws a crowd of bystanders who goggle at it and magnify the effect. Flash fads.
What would make Twitter enduring if if they have a reliable repeatable way to generate flash fad after flash fad. It seems that’s what they’re on to, and, if they succeed, they will do well.
Whatever builds an enduring audience is king. Your thoughts?