Sometimes you just got to give credit where credit is due. Hours of fun for stats-nerds.
It was one of those days, where I spoke to a potential partner about competitive advantage. It was hard to get a read on the person, like so many others. Jobs said people don’t know what they want, you have to show them. But some people do not know what they want even after you show them. Jobs, people know they want a thing; a tangible thing, when they see it, but they struggle with abstract things.
Okay, that headline was false. I did not really deeply research this phenomenon that I come to call the Rowe Effect. But, I’ve kept an eye on it for a few decades. Uber is an abstract concept that was sufficiently executed and then grew into the thing that we know it as today. Few people know that Uber was not a “taxi service” as such, but an app for people to carpool. Through need and supply, pivots and incrementalism, the Uber Original became Uber Today. Companies like Lyft, on the other hand, saw during the early stages of Uber that there is an need for a crowd sourced taxi service, if one can label it as such. Lyft never had to go through the metamorphosis.
I have to remind myself that this is a media/video blog and not rant about my frustrations swimming up-stream. Video on the Internet (VOI) are solidly part of our daily info or entertainment diet. But unlike the old day, when you got your info and entertainment over a square box, there are in modernity none of the gate keepers in the form of broadcast bosses. Or is there?
How no one can see this is beyond me. The modern gatekeeper is not the whimfull TV boss; it is a highly logical algorithm that gets its marching orders from a democratic consensus. This is a mouthful, but let me say it in another way: what you see in your feed is what everyone wants to see in their feed. To get out of that track is very hard. Also for said track to change is a slow and difficult process. If no one is discovering you it will be hard to be discovered. If you already highly ranked, you will rank more highly. This is obvious but what is less apparent is that a lot of great content will never hit your eyeballs because there is a curation problem which the old days of TV did not have. Sure the old days had other issues, but this issue is an elephant in the room, at least for me.
Let Me Spell It Out
Content producers, technicians, service providers et-all should self-unionize and self-curate. They should form teams, groups, circles; networks where their efforts can be co-ordained. Things like knowledge, skills, and even cost of marketing can be co-opted. Burden and profits are shared. It comes down to game-theory of which I wrote earlier.
But in most cases, what I observe is that most prefer the cupcake over the 4 tier wedding cake. Most understand cupcake and are intimidated by the complexity of 4 tier wedding cake. Or, and this is the most likely, they will rather have all of a cupcake than; God Forbid, share any part of a wedding cake.
Unless you are a balloon, one single pinprick should not worry you. In ancient China, death by a thousand pinpricks was both a method of torture and a means of execution reserved for the most heinous of crimes. The author of this blog has personally been pricked over a thousand times and is still alive and well. Ah, the pricks has to happen in a short amount of time to be effective, you’d say. And you’d be right. Much has been said lately about the nudge theory based on the book and thesis by the same name. The study of which, gained the father of Nudge, the Nobel prize in economics in 2017.
Does It Work and How?
In my experience; as with allot of things, it can be “willed” to work. Through grit and tenacity anything can be used to one’s advantage. The truth is: a 1% nudge is only going to get you 1% down the road. Half the time that 1% on its own will revert back in a short span. As in our Chinese torture example, right off the bat you need to make hundreds of little nudges simultaneously for it to be effective. Sounds like allot of work. Correct. Is it worth though, doing hundreds even thousands of little things? Why not just make one huge move?
The Secret of Nudge
In a certain high level of competition; be it athletics or industry, the huge move of one competitor is normal offset by the same or similar effort of other competitors. There is only that many big moves that one can make. Therefore, in order to gain a competitive advantage over the competition, economist and sport trainers alike, started looking at ways of leveraging many consistent small improvements.
Easier Said Than Done
Nudge and systems thinking should be synonymous. Simply because this large amount of small but constant interactions should be tracked, monitored and tweaked in real time to be effective. Being a video guy in the R of SA, I’ve been jaded allot. Clients get a website. They think it is the be-all and end-all. But almost nothing happens. They get SEO. Almost nothing happened. They hear video and SMM is all the rage, they get that, too slowly things start to happen. A single pinprick will destroy a balloon, but it will hardly harm a man.
Here is a nice info graphic:
Running on 20% power at a budget of $3 per day.
Update: 12 hours later
Update: After the weekend
(AKA say no to vertical video)
For millennia, learned men (and women, no doubt) have been infatuated with the mathematical beauty in music, art, architecture and geometry.
The name they gave to it: The Golden Ratio.
Fast forward a few decades and we get this mess:
I’m only being facetious. I’m sure this lady does grand work. It seems to be the case. But as a film school graduate and incurable cinemaphile, I’m still a hard line 16:9-er (cinematic ratio for wide screen). It’s simply more dramatic and artistic. Not to mention being the new norm after the 50 year pan/scan abortion which was 4:3 box TVs, pft!
I’m curiously looking at these ratios and sizes and how best to display them on the de-facto device, your fondle-block. The little wonder in your pocket. You know, your phone. (Have anyone noticed we don’t even call them smart phones any more?) Where will it end?
For now, I’m drawing a hard line at vertical video. HARD NO! from me.
IDK man. Ask me again in 30 years.