Author Archives: Mike Zammuto

About Mike Zammuto

Michael Zammuto is a software and internet executive who has led teams at Microsoft and been a CEO, COO, president, CIO and CTO for some great companies. He has participated in 4 successful exits totaling and is a well regarded media figure and speaker

Social Media vs Profile Seats

Social Media Platforms vs. Business Profile Sites

Working on strategy for Completed.com I have spent a lot of time studying other services. Viadeo is an interesting one. There are a lot of interesting models out there. One way to look at them is from the perspective of user acquisition. Sites like Facebook and later LinkedIn got very good at network effect. Profile sites often have to rely on organic search and other traffic sources. This seems to be an inherent disadvantage. In general, models that rely upon organic traffic sources other than network effect seem to have a maximum potential.

Cloud Commerce Post on Fundraising

I have been focused more on fundraising this year. I found the results of the Journal of Financial Economics outlines how Amazon Web Services has made it easier to launch startups. I completely agree. But with everything, there are unintended consequences which includes higher failure rates as ‘B’ round funding has not increased similarly. This post on Cloud Commerce Consulting’s website offers more details.

LA Times Interview on The fallout for Uber CEO Travis Kalanick

Startup culture is a very interesting topic. At its best it is a source of great creative power. At its worst, it can distract and destroy. That was the source of an LA Times interview that I did regarding Uber. The situation at Uber is a great example of the later. But the fallout for CEO Travis Kalanick is a symptom not the cause. The cause to me, is that the pendulum to protect founders from outside interference has arguable swung too far. Nobody likes the story of the brilliant, creative founder forced out by the suits. But the clear dynamic for 10 years has been something entirely different. Startup CEOs are barely accountable to anyone – including their own board and investors.

I had a chance to read the Holder report as soon as it was released and I raised concerns about it changing any hearts and minds. The subsequent comments and resignation of David Bonderman demonstrates, I believe, how little a report can change a culture.

 

 

A Few Mega Platforms Are Quietly Killing Free Traffic. Here Is What it Means For Marketers

I recently published an article on LinkedIn and sent out this press release on the mega platforms. As it says, a small number of websites are gaining control over larger portions of internet traffic. This means that sites like Google, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and a handful of others are growing their own traffic faster than internet traffic itself is growing.

Systematically these sites are focusing on better monetizing that traffic which is good for their financial performance (in most cases) but it means a major shakeup for marketers.

Look at the major changes at each of the big players. YouTube is under criticism for how it structures its agreements with content providers and its content strategy is highly controversial among big YouTube promoters. Google’s changes have been to reduce the effectiveness of SEO overall while shifting more content to being delivered right in search results. Facebook and Twitter have really gotten serious about advertising. These and many other changes have the effect of promoting paid traffic solutions in place of previously ‘free’ organic ones. Even Amazon’s marketplace and online store strategy shifts eCommerce traffic from several sources (including organic search) to paid Amazon services. All this has big ramifications for marketers

thank you for reading

Mike Zammuto

When Your Eldest Goes To College

A funny thing is happening right now. My eldest, Michaela Zammuto, is graduating from high school. She has a full summer planned and then starts at the University of Pennsylvania in the fall.

Of course, I could not be prouder. She is a bright, articulate young woman, engaging and confident. She deserves everything she has accomplished and I am happy to have been there to help along the way. I view a parent’s job first and foremost as helping to ensure their kids become successful adults and in that regard, I feel like my wife and I have done a lot of things well.

What is funny is how something so momentous and anticipated can still feel like it snuck up on you. It almost feels like a surprise. Talking about how fast the years go by makes you sound old so I will avoid it. But it doesn’t change the odd, creeping feeling that something is slipping away from your grasp.

Michael Zammuto on Artificial Intelligence

I have had a strong interest in artificial intelligence for many years. I followed it carefully and began adding artificial intelligence features to my business platforms including Brand.com’s reputation analysis tools. More recently, Completed.com launched with AI features studying technical, sentiment and behavioral clues as part of the platform which measures, scores and monitors the ‘trust score’ of reviewers submitting content to Completed.com.

Michael Zammuto working at his desk

Michael Zammuto reading and Blogging on a variety of topics.

I also read a lot about AI and talk about it frequently with my kids, especially the opportunities it creates and possible societal challenges it may cause. For fun I recently launched a Weebly Journal dedicated to my personal writings on AI and hope you will visit it.

Disclaimer: this site and the AI journal on Weebly represent my personal opinions and this does not imply the opinions of any other organization or person. My opinions also do not imply any forward looking product, business or technology decisions or investments in any way. They are my personal ramblings only.

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I co-founded Completed.com and serve as its CEO because I believe that people deserve recognition for the good work they do and because I believe that everyone gets better with trusted, constructive feedback. Claim or build your profile and start reviewing anyone in business today. Ask people around you to rate you and learn what they really think about you.

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