Your personal data is not worth anywhere near what you think it’s worth

I see a lot of Root Markets-like businesses. Companies creating a way for people to own their own data and profit from it rather than letting someone else profit from it. The idea is appealing: other people are selling your data, it’s your data, why shouldn’t you sell it yourself? But most of the people I […]

You can’t manage what you can’t measure. Not at scale, anyway.

A year ago I wrote, re investing in social marketing, “The social loop will share superficial characteristics with the display loop, but it’s really completely different… the area with the most near-term leverage will be tools that help communicators understand the impact of how they are communicating and then help them make better decisions.” This […]

Information and Markets, Pork Chop Edition

In The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan, a thought-provoking book, I came across this. The fact that the nutritional quality of a given food (and of that food’s food) can vary not just in degree but in kind throws a big wrench into an industrial food chain, the very premise of which is that beef […]

Information and markets, 3

An anecdote. A few years ago a private equity firm asked me to help them look at some lead-gen companies. One of the target companies had a network of many thousands of small lead buyers and were known to produce high-quality leads. They had worked years to build this reputation. They got good prices for […]

Information and markets, 2

Those most familiar with the cattle trade agree that there often exist wide differences between the actual selling price of cattle in the market and the previous estimate by the feeders sending them forward as to the prices they should bring. The small feeder, who seldom follows his cattle to market, has a poor chance […]

Information and markets, 1

There are many markets in which buyers use some market statistic to judge the quality of prospective purchases. In this case there is incentive for sellers to market poor quality merchandise, since the returns for good quality accrue mainly to the entire group whose statistic is affected rather than to the individual seller. As a […]