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November 19, 2008

About a year ago, Lisa Nova was accused of using a bot to spam youtube channels to up her views and subscribers. There was an online petition to put an end to it. But the fact of the matter is, spam is going to continue to be a common practice, especially on the web, because it essentially has no cost.

I thought I’d share a disguised one I found on The Hayley Project boards.


For a second, I thought that What The Buck show actually covered THP, which got me excited (hey, we can use the views). But nope, there was no mention. It was just normal spam. Bastard.

Even though everybody hates spam, the fact of the matter is, marketers have to use “direct marketing” in order to reach people.

Chris Anderson has a great article about “freemium economics”. He talks about how zero marginal costs of distribution encourages (rightfully so) the strategy of reaching as many people as possible, and converting a small percent to paid users. In the brick ‘n mortar world, however, marketing campaigns costs more money, so marketers have to be smart and optimize how they use their resources to go after customers. On the web, reaching a large amount of people is extremely cheap, so it encourages a marketing approach that is less targeted. This, of course, leads to spam and less targeted messages.

“This is the underlying logic of the Freemium business model, which uses the near-zero marginal cost of online distribution to reach the maximum possible audience, converting just a tiny fraction of them to paid users.”

– Chris Anderson

In the case of online video, “conversion” can be considered repeat viewers or subscribers.


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