Archive for Ben Wilkinson

Why Marketing Matters…

Posted by Ben Wilkinson on April 7th, 2013 at 10:02 am

(Ed's note: I originally posted this on my personal blog 2 years ago. I tweeted it out yesterday and it got a positive response, so I'm posting again here).
Before I start this article, some fair disclosure - I'm an acquisition marketer by trade, so there might be a little bias in this post. That fact hopefully doesn't dissuade from the argument below.
Yesterday, esteemed Venture Capitalist, Fred Wilson, wrote an epic post outlining his thoughts on how he believes most start-ups should market their product. Fred made several good points and everybody should take the time to read the blog post in its entirety.
Likewise, my buddy Bryce tweeted an interesting comment from Geek Squad Founder, Robert Stephens:

“Advertising is the tax you pay for being unremarkable”

Both Fred and Bryce make their points explicitly clear - start-ups need to scrimp and save when it comes the cost of acquiring customers. I absolutely agree with this. The goal of every start-up should be to minimize the cost per acquisition of each new customer. Likewise, as Fred points out that start-ups need to at first focus on the product, that product decisions should at first be hunch driven, and later data driven. I agreed... Read more

You're (website/app is) So Vain…

Posted by Ben Wilkinson on January 12th, 2013 at 12:22 pm

I know that I’m a bit late to the game on this, but one thing that is starting to make noise here in Silicon Valley and elsewhere is the fact that Venture Capitalists are starting to pay less attention to so-called Vanity Metrics and starting to pay attention to metrics that are much more meaningful to growing successful long-term businesses.
What are vanity metrics you may ask? Back in the early days of the web, people used to brag about how many ‘hits’ their website received. I’m not sure that metric was ever truthfully defined, but it eventually evolved into things like visitors, unique visitors, and more modernly app downloads/installs and even sign-ups and registrations.
What’s the problem with these metrics? A quick side story - two years ago I was chatting with a partner from a top VC fund and I was showing him the (what I thought was impressive) spike in unique visitors from a start-up I was consulting at. He literally laughed at me and said “You know I can see right through that, right? I was in advertising once too.” The issue with these metrics is they are easily manipulated and they don’t necessarily produce revenue or long... Read more

Underpaid or Overrated

Posted by Ben Wilkinson on December 1st, 2010 at 3:31 am

Google is close to acquiring Groupon for an insane amount. Will it pay off?

The Illusion of Web Privacy

Posted by Ben Wilkinson on October 24th, 2010 at 7:13 pm

Online privacy is important, but on the web, it's hard to maintain.

The Importance of LifeTime Value

Posted by Ben Wilkinson on October 10th, 2010 at 6:56 pm

The LifeTime Value of an acquired customer is one of the most important metrics of any ad campaign.