Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Blogger envy

This week I’ve been mulling about my blog — it’s a hobby, a way to get out ideas, and a way to communicate with an audience of friends, business associates, students and former students. It’s not a business. I’ve held off on running ads (like some blogs do) on the assumption that the ugliness is not worth the token revenues. (The site is partly supported by the book/movie/CD links to Amazon).

Then today I read an Business Week article about schlocky little blogs that make money. ICanHasCheezburger, (boy that’s a stupid name due to cybersquatters) launched within a few days of my blog, is pulling an estimated $67K/year after only six months.

“Thou shalt not covet” is #10 on the all-time top ten list of rules to live by, and while this is one the most frequent temptations of modern life, blogger envy is pretty easy to overcome.

Instead, I find it interesting that there’s opportunity for late entry into a crowded field to make money. Kinda reminds me of when my friend Duane Maxwell started a software company ca. 1992 — several years after my tiny company been shut out of any significant distribution — I assumed that new entrants faced impossible odds. But he made a small chunk of change from the 1993 hit Morph — although probably less than he would have made if the Levco Prodigy business had been sold for cash rather than SuperMac stock which later proved to be worthless.

Of course there are entrepreneurial returns to first/early movers like Steve Wozniak who imagine a product category or industry that doesn’t exist. This is yet another reminder that a little hustle, moxy or just dumb luck makes it possible for the most optimistic, entrepreneurial businessperson to succeed even in relatively mature markets. As my mentor Charlie Jackson used to say, “I’d rather be lucky than good.”

Technorati Tags: ,

No comments: