When serving intention outperforms recruiting attention

Life in the Vast Lane — What lives past the Web 2.0 bubble is my EOF essay in the February Linux Journal. One sample:

  In the long run, there’s going to be a lot more money in helping demand find supply than in helping supply find (or create) demand — simply because the efficiencies involved in helping money-in-hand find places to go exceed the guesswork that defines advertising at its core. That even goes for Google, which introduced the radical notion of accountability, but still involves mountains of wasted placements (by countless Linux servers pushing gazillions of tiny text ads into the margins of blogs and search results). I’m not saying that advertising ends, by the way, just that its fate is to become part of an informational ecosystem that supports the buying intentions of customers at least as well as it supports the selling intentions of vendors.

The challenge, of course, is to build out the latter.


  1. David Cushman’s avatar

    Yep, yep yep! What is amazing me (as I observe it in practice right now) is how few vendors are even playing with the tools which might allow them to be managed.
    I’ve been trying to buy a car by simply saying so online… you might think on dealer, or a friend of a friend of a dealer might have the tools to pick up on this.
    Not so far!
    I’ ve blogged about my efforts here: http://tinyurl.com/2jt9ln

    Off to read your essay!

  2. Doc Searls’s avatar

    I’ve noticed (and believe I blogged) your one-man VRM efforts, David. (Tell me if I didn’t… I lose track.)

    Obviously, we need some New Stuff here. Working on that. 🙂

  3. Adam Fields’s avatar

    Your link is broken. I assume that’s supposed to be projectvrm.org?

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  5. Rutger van Waveren’s avatar

    Beautifully said Doc!

    Btw, can you convince Steve Gillmor to do another VRM gang?

    @David, hope you sell your car soon.

  6. Doc Searls’s avatar

    Thanks, Adam. Fixed.

    Rutger, I’ll try. 🙂

  7. David Cushman’s avatar

    Hi all – good news is the car I was selling sold straightaway in a very ongoing relationship (VRMish) kind of way.
    The owner of the gararge where it was serviced bought it. We’ve become trusting friends. I rang him to ask what I should ask for it. He bought it for his partner as a family run around (bit of bartering involved too, he paid a little less than we’d get as a trade in but gave us free servicing on the new car for two years – relatively low cost for him but high value to us – all parties happy).
    His decision to buy is real validation of his faith in his own work.
    Dealers coming to me to sell… so far still zero!
    btw: didn’t pick up on your blogging my efforts Doc, I’ll go look right now and apologise if I missed it. Even the thought is very much appreciated!
    best dc

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