Cable TV vs. Cable Broadband

June 3, 2009 BusinessWeek

By delivering high-speed Internet access, the cable industry has given its customers a way to bypass its monthly subscriptions to programming, writes Jeffrey F. Rayport a partner at Monitor and founder and chairman of Marketspace, a digital strategy and customer experience practice affiliated with Monitor Group.

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Envisioning the Cloud: The Next Computing Paradigm

March 20, 2009

Marketspace Point of View by Jeffrey F. Rayport and Andrew Heyward

What technologists like to call "the cloud" is the idea of computing on demand. To realize the enormous potential of the cloud, the role of government must be to clear the way for cloud computing, not to pave it. In this paper, co-authors Andrew Heyward and Jeffrey F. Rayport argue that there are eight fundamental elements for "enabling" the cloud to realize its full potential. While policy-makers can play a supportive role, the cloud, like the roll-out of the Internet before it, is taking shape on its own, in ways largely mediated by market forces. But policy action can safeguard the cloud's future as the basis for a flourishing new technology sector here in the U.S. This paper presents the cloud as one avenue for the U.S. to re-assert economic and technology leadership on a global stage.

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Make Online Ads Accountable

February 17, 2009 BusinessWeek

The decline in Cost-Per-Thousand (CPM) pricing for online advertising does not necessarily mean a decline in the value of online as an advertising medium, instead it may signal the need for the industry to shift to a Cost-Per-Click business model (from which Google has continually profited), writes Jeffrey F. Rayport a partner at Monitor and founder and chairman of Marketspace, a digital strategy and customer experience practice affiliated with Monitor Group.

Using the web for only brand-building neglects the medium's most unique competency, Rayport writes: "Yes, the Web is effective for brand building, but in dwelling relentlessly on display advertising and CPM pricing, we're losing focus on the Internet's real power as a medium for direct marketing and eliciting a response."

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Social Networks Are the New Web Portals

January 21, 2009 BusinessWeek

Social networks like Facebook and MySpace are becoming the new gateways to the Web, threatening the dominance of Google, Yahoo, MSN, and AOL, writes Jeffrey F. Rayport, founder and chairman of Marketspace, a digital strategy and customer experience practice affiliated with Monitor Group.

While the portals are doing their best to catch up, challenges abound, Rayport writes: "Google's oft-stated mission is "to organize the world's information." Organizing information is how earlier generations of Web companies have traditionally created value for users, with or without search. But the new game is radically different. Facebook, in particular, has set out to organize not the world's content, but the world's people. As this social meta-Web emerges, the players that own and harness social applications will radically reorganize and reshape the Web in ways we can only imagine today, and that will profoundly alter our experience of the online world."

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Jeffrey Rayport on Why Online Ads Are Weathering the Recession

December 24, 2008 BusinessWeek

Jeffrey Rayport looks at the effect of the recession on online advertising compared to other forms of traditional advertising. The online advertising landscape has changed since the last recession and the benefits of the pay-as-you-go approach are more appealing to senior-level marketing decision-makers during this time of budget cuts.

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Jeffrey Rayport on Google's Growth Engine

October 27, 2008 BusinessWeek

You probably won't get rich betting against Google. Every quarter, cynics predict a stumble. Most of the time, they're wrong. Even when Google misses analysts' forecasts, the company still manages to deliver impressive gains, notes Jeffrey F. Rayport, founder and chairman of Marketspace, a digital strategy and customer experience practice affiliated with Monitor Group.

Still, as Google heads toward $20 billion in sales this year, ranking No. 5 among the fastest-growing tech companies tracked by BusinessWeek, it's tempting again to ask whether anything can derail the company's growth engine. And while the company's reach and potential are undeniable, it will undoubtedly face challenges on many fronts, particularly from rivals, regulators, and the recession.

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Future of Online Video Rountable

Stanford University, California, July 29, 2008.

Andrew Heyward moderates a panel discussion about the integration of citizen journalism into mainstream media. Video clip and blog by Andy Plesser, Executive Producer of Beet.TV.

"Meet Customers 3.0"
Commentary: Smart retailers will innovate to catch next wave of shoppers.

Jeffrey F. Rayport & Eric J. McNulty, MarketWatch, June 5, 2008.

What if the current retail recession is about more than the overall slowdown of the global economy? In our view, there's more here than meets the eye. Put another way, when the good times are back, our bet is that many retail businesses will still be wondering where their customers are.

"Why Ballmer Bailed on Yahoo"

Jeffrey F. Rayport, BusinessWeek, May 10, 2008.

According to Jeffrey F. Rayport, there are five reasons Microsoft's chief gave up on his bid for Yahoo, including its cost and its not making sense.

"QVC shops for ideas for future sales"

Laura Petrecca, USA TODAY, May, 4, 2008.

QVC must figure out how to keep the business healthy as the media and retail landscapes undergo seismic shifts. It needs to remain "relevant" (in marketing speak) to consumers while enticing a new generation of shoppers and battling a perception that direct-response TV retailers sell just hokey, flimsy or kitschy goods.

"It's Down to Two: Microsoft and Google"

Jeffrey F. Rayport, BusinessWeek, February 4, 2008.

If Microsoft's $44 billion acquisition of Yahoo! looks like a big business story, it is—but not necessarily for the reasons you've been reading about these past few days. Yes, it's a Big Gulp of a deal that will pay a 60%-plus premium on the share price. And yes, it's a transaction that marries two high-profile brands of the technology world.

"Microsoft's bid for Yahoo is bigger than you think"
Commentary: Acquisition would change landscape of online search industry.

Jeffrey F. Rayport, MarketWatch, February 4, 2008.

Sure, at $44 billion, this M&A; transaction is gargantuan by any measure -- relative to other media and technology deals, and in absolute terms. Indeed, it dwarfs any one in the breathtaking series of recent combinations that have already shaken the online world, including Google's acquisition of dMarc ($1.1 billion), Publicis's of Digitas ($1.3 billion), Google's of YouTube ($1.65 billion), Google's of DoubleClick ($3.1 billion), and, yes, Microsoft's of aQuantive ($6 billion).

"Will the real Steve Ballmer please stand up?"
Commentary: Why Facebook was worth the bet.

Jeffrey F. Rayport, MarketWatch, November 14, 2007.

On October 1st, in an interview with the London Times, Microsoft's CEO declared social networking was a fad- the kind that appealed to younger people. He added, "There can't be any more deep technology in Facebook than what dozens of people could write in a couple of years, that's for sure." Well, that was then.

"Adopting New Rules of Consumer Engagement"

Jeffrey F. Rayport, Imagining the Future of Newspapers {blog}, November 10, 2007.

There's no doubt that information, not just news, is a growth business, even if newspaper publishing is not. But newspapers must find ways to align themselves with drivers of growth in a market they already know.

"Advertising's death is greatly exaggerated
Commentary: But marketers are losing touch with customers"

Jeffrey F. Rayport, MarketWatch, June 8, 2007.

To judge from ad-industry publications, advertising is in crisis. The stories of upheaval in how agencies serve clients, create value and get paid might readily suggest that advertising as a profession and business is dead, or dying. Nothing could be further from the truth.

"Economics 101: Web Giants Rule 'Democratized' Medium: Why It's the Best of Times and Worst of Times for Web Publishers"

Abbey Kaassen, Advertising Age, April 8, 2007.

Marketspace Chairman Jeffrey Rayport suggests that the share of net ad revenue could disproportionately shift toward the Big Four online portals as the gross adspend steadily rises.

"Demand-Side Innovation: Where IT Meets Marketing"

Jeffrey F. Rayport, Optimize Magazine, Issue 64, February 2007.

It's not a better mousetrap that will set businesses apart. In the online social-networking marketplace, customers can make or break a product. How will businesses tap into this new world?

"Flash in the Online Plan"

Meridith Levinson, CIO Magazine, April 5, 2006.

Rich Internet technologies can make your Web engaging for customers and more profitable for you. Jeffrey Rayport says it's in companies' best interests to try out new Web technologies. "If you don't find a way to experiment with these new technologies to find out which will be relevant to your customers, and your competitors get it right, you'll have a lot of catching up to do," he says.

"Customer Service Hell"

Hannah Clark, Forbes, March 30, 2006.

As companies cut costs and shift their call centers overseas, service has become less personal--and more frustrating. There's a solution to this problem: e-mail. Companies save money by answering queries over the Internet. And customers don't have to waste time waiting on hold. But there's a problem: E-mail help doesn't work well, and it's only getting worse.

"Why CIOs and CMOs Need Each Other"

Jeffrey F. Rayport, CIO Magazine, February 15, 2006.

Every time you see significant dysfunction in the way a company or brand interacts with its customers, it is not the fault of one corporate function but two—both marketing and technology.

"The Customer Service Challenge", December 6, 2005.

In the rush to save money, many companies are unwittingly pushing their customers through inappropriate "channel pathways" and poorly executed interfaces, costing themselves near-term revenue and long-term relationships whose value far outweighs whatever savings, if any, may initially be realized. Jeffrey F. Rayport argues that the basis of competition in many industries is shifting from what companies sell to how they go to market through a firm's channels and interfaces.

"Best Face Forward: Improving Companies' Service Interfaces with Customers"

Journal of Interactive Marketing, Volume 19, Issue 4, October 19, 2005.

Jeffrey F. Rayport, Bernard J. Jaworski and Ellie J. Kyung examine the origins of the "front-office revolution," and the need for businesses to manage coordinated interface systems.

"Emerging Thinkers"

Optimize Magazine, October 2005.

A sampling of ideas from the best and brightest thinkers on IT you'll be hearing more about, including Nicholas Carr, Jeffrey Rayport, Chris Trimble, Barry Nalebuff and Ian Ayres, and Ellen Kitzis.

"The Second Internet Boom"

Management of Business Models, Interview with Jeffrey F. Rayport, Personlich, June 2005.

"My View: Face Forward"

Jeffrey F. Rayport, Microsoft Executive Circle, Spring 2005.

Leading companies now must look to a new frontier of competitive advantage based not on what they sell but how they sell. It's a new frontier defined by the effectiveness and efficiency with which a firm orchestrates its interactions and relationships with its customers and markets. This article originally appeared in the Spring 2005 issue of Microsoft Executive Circle Magazine.

"Who Knows the Customer Best?"

Optimize Magazine, March 2005.

Customer interfaces can either be a strategic advantage or a huge liability- a chief experience officer can ensure it's the latter.

"Process/Data Divide Impedes BI"

Intelligent Enterprise, March 2005.

The article summarizes the need for business intelligence to focus less on data and more on business processes in order to make effective strategic choices. Best Face Forward featured in a "Get Smart" box that concludes the article.

"The Front Office Revolution," and "Customer Care's New Frontier" Video Interviews with Jeffrey Rayport, February 2005.

In these two interviews, Jeffrey Rayport talks in detail about the changes taking place as interface systems, and the experiences they create for customers, become the new arena for competitive advantage.

"QVC: Driving Sales in Real Time"

Excerpt from Harvard Business School Working Knowledge, January 24, 2005.

Service interfaces work best with customers when technologies and humans play to their strengths. This Working Knowledge excerpt from Best Face Forward discusses how QVC maximizes sales with a highly effective hybrid approach of machine and human talent.

Best Face Forward

Learn more about Best Face Forward, by Jeffrey Rayport and Bernard Jaworski (Harvard Business School Press, 2005).

Translation editions now available in:



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