One of my favorite observations about places to vacation is that the harder it is to get there, the better they are:
Aspen beats Vail
Montauk beats East Hampton
Tulum beats Cancun
And I think the same is often true of Internet services.
My friend Brad Feld tweeted this out yesterday:
i’ve grown tired of spotify and pandora – listening to the same stuff. so i’m going to try soundcloud for a while – any hints?
— Brad Feld (@bfeld) July 15, 2014
I replied with a suggestion on how to get started
— Fred Wilson (@fredwilson) July 15, 2014
But regardless of my help, Brad is in for a harder time getting SoundCloud working for him than getting Pandora working for him. But if he sticks it out, follows the right people, curates tracks by liking them and reposting them, he will find there is a richness to SoundCloud that simply doesn’t exist on “just hit play” audio services.
The same is true of Twitter. I read this research note on Twitter yesterday:
Twitter: Study Vol. 3 suggests fixable user issues and mass market potential; Buy – MKM Partners
MKM Partners finished another proprietary study on TWTR. Findings:
-User attrition is the key issue for TWTR. Like other volumes, this survey shows polarized indicators of stickiness
-Strong indications that improved user experience and streamlined content mgmt would fix churn issues
So Wall Street is finally figuring out that Twitter isn’t Facebook. It exhibits “polarized indicators of stickiness”.
Which to me means, some people love Twitter and become obsessed with it. And others churn out quickly.
Twitter is a lot like SoundCloud. You have to do a lot of work to get to “that place” with Twitter. You have to follow the right people (for you). You have to favorite, retweet, reply, and engage. But when you do there is a richness to Twitter that doesn’t exist on simpler and easier social nets.
I am sure we can find many other examples of this. That might be a good exercise for our comment discussion.
When it comes to social media, no pain means no gain.
Disclosure: USV provided early stage venture capital investments to both SoundCloud and Twitter. And I personally own a lot of Twitter stock.