• Alumni

Activity Feed

On April 7, 2017, CPerlman commented on Legendary Pictures: Using Data to Make and Market Movies :

I agree with the above comments and think that using data on the marketing side of the film business will be more readily accepted than on the creative side. I wonder if there is an analytics business to be made out of the movie industry? Can a third-party business be created that takes all of the knowledge about film hits and misses from the past and creates a predictive model that they can be sold to film companies? To me data analysis does not seem like a core competency of most production houses so a company that can specialize in this could capture some value.

On April 7, 2017, CPerlman commented on Birchbox: the beauty of data :

Thanks for a great post Sonali. I wonder if one of the issues Birchbox is having (along with other subscription services) is that of market adoption. I think there are a group of early adopters who are beauty enthusiasts, but does Birchbox fulfill a need of a greater majority? To me they be having a “crossing the channel” problem. That’s why I wonder if they can use their vast amount to build out another service to capture additional value? For example selling it back to beauty brands, or creating some sort of predictive model to help forecast beauty trends.

Thanks for a great post. One thing this made me consider is what is Google’s goal in terms of Value Capture? If data is going to be the most important tool in the self-driving car system I can imagine that Google might want to own that data and sell it, rather than be the one actually producing/selling self-driving cars. Gathering this data first and creating an effective software platform for the running of driverless cars could allow Google to capture a lot of the future value of this new industry.

On March 26, 2017, CPerlman commented on Thoughts on Utilizing Crowds to Disrupt the Airline Industry :

I think there are some interesting ideas in here. For me, crowdsourcing routes seems like a really good idea for airlines who are exploring entering new routes. I think this would especially make sense for an airlines to ask this of its frequent flyer customers, who would be the most likely to take the new routes in the future. Scandinavian Airlines launched a portal similar to your first idea, which they seem to have found success in: http://www.breakingtravelnews.com/news/article/sas-launches-crowdsourcing-portal/

On March 26, 2017, CPerlman commented on Waze: Traffic from the Crowd :

Thanks for a great post. I agree with you that Waze has a strong, loyal user base, which could be very interesting to potential advertisers. I also think it is a great example of a crowdsourcing platform that grew its user base organically, just by improving its users’ lives. To me, Google’s purchase of the app puts its future into question, especially since we see Google investing so much in its own Maps app. I wonder if Google sees purchasing Waze as a way to use crowdsourcing data to improve its own Maps functionality, or if it is trying to own the competition?

Thanks for a great post. One question I was thinking about during the discussion was how much do these type of crowdsourcing businesses have to actual market themselves to become a platform that consumers come to purchase items. Brand related crowdsourcing product platforms (like the Lego example) have a built in consumer base to purchase their products. Quirky and other platforms like them need to build their consumer base from scratch, which can involved a whole lot of time and money. I think the comparison to QVC (or even Shark Tank) is appropriate, and these are platforms that have built strong brands and followers over time. This is another reason that Quirky was probably at a disadvantage from the start.

On February 28, 2017, CPerlman commented on Roku: From Product, to Product Platform, to Software Platform :

Thanks Natalie, great post! It will be very interesting to see how this industry shakes up. As you point out, the streaming device market has both high multi-homing characteristics and high network effects, putting it in the top right of our 2×2 matrix. Typically we see companies in this area competing on differentiating features. If competitive streaming devices end up having relatively the same content, I wonder how Roku will evolve in the future to differentiate itself. Right now I feel like it is one of the low-cost players in the market, but Amazon Fire seems also to play in this space. Also, if the “connected home” trend becomes platform dependent than Roku could end up being at a disadvantage because it does not have an ecosystem to connect to the way that Amazon has Alexa, Google has Google Home and Apple has Siri.

Thanks, this is a very interesting topic. I am a huge Google Maps fan and have noticed that it is becoming more and more a core part of my daily app usage. I think increasing functionality with lists and adding social functions makes the app more “sticky” in a users life. It has now progressed from just a functional directions-focused tool, to becoming a big keepers of an individual’s preferences. I think the focus on keeping up quality and usability of the app have prevented users from switching to Apple maps for example, even though it is more integrated with their hardware.

On February 28, 2017, CPerlman commented on YC: organizing the seed-funding ecosystem :

Thank you, this is a very interesting post. My question is what will the competition end up looking like in this industry as I’m not sure if it will end up being winner-takes-all. As you mentioned, there have been a wave of new incubators and accelerators that have emerged to compete with Y Combinator. And while entrepreneurs cannot multi-home, investors can easily multi-home in this space. To me, this puts incubators in the top right corner of our 2×2 matrix, in which players are compete on differentiating characteristics. For example in Entrepreneurial Finance last semester we did a case on Bolt, an incubator that specializes in connected hardware.

On February 3, 2017, CPerlman commented on Hey Siri, can you help yourself? :

I think your point about distribution is really important. It was significant that Alexa was launched on the Echo device (as Google did on its device well) as opposed to being included as part of a device meant for other uses (Siri and the iPhone). With this launch approach, consumers were choosing to purchase a device because of its voice technology, which I think helped with adoption and usage. It didn’t get lost among all of the other things a consumer does on their phone. Once consumers became comfortable using a simple home device made for voice, Amazon could extend this technology to other smart home devices as well as mobile as you mentioned. Apple consumers on the other hand, only found Siri distracting as they were using their phone for other reasons. This is a good example of when forcing distribution and usage does not work.

On February 3, 2017, CPerlman commented on Instacart – Leading the way for grocery deliveries :

I would like to add another concern around competition from existing big tech companies like Amazon and Uber. From the consumer’s perspective a big impediment to adopting this online grocery shopping is the delivery cost. Instagram could be hurt by big competitors figuring out a business model in which they can financially justify no delivery fee. An example is what Amazon is doing with Prime Now, including the service as part of the prime membership bundle. Unfortunately these digital service companies end up playing a promotion game to both gain new consumers and retain current consumers, leading to unattractive economics.

On February 3, 2017, CPerlman commented on Sephora: Staying Relevant in Brick and Mortar :

I think you bring up some great points about Sephora’s innovations in the retail space, but I would also highlight their innovation on their website as well. Sephora has shown how to go up against an eCommerce behemoth like Amazon – do well what they do poorly (curated product line, education, high-quality content, free samples, loyalty system) while still emphasizing customer service (Amazon’s strength). Sephora does this by utilizing a robust customer review section, a relatively good shipping system (3 day free shipping with orders over $50), and an easy return process. I think they are an example of creating a cohesive omnichannel system as Megan points out.