Saturday, May 07, 2005
How Not To Succeed In A Business While Really Trying
How's this for desperate? On Friday, Microsoft sent out the following email to its Microsoft Network users...i.e. the poor shlubs who got hooked on Microsoft's email product and wish we hadn't:
MSN Music: Buy 1 Song, Get 5 Free. How do 5 free songs sound? MSN® Music is giving you 5 free songs when you buy 1. At MSN Music, you'll get more than you'd expect from a music service. To make sure you get the music you're looking for, you can preview any song from major and even independent labels. Choose from hot new songs, time-defying classics, and rare, hard to find recordings from old radio shows [emphasis mine].
Plus watch music videos, read bios and even get concert tickets. Buy only the songs you want for 99¢, or buy the full album for less than you'd pay in a retail store or other online music services. And legally burn all the CDs you want from what you buy, too. And now the deal is even sweeter because you can get 5 songs for free.
What do you think? Makes you want to rush right out and sign up for "MSN Music," eh? No? Well, me neither. I was being ironic.
You'd think that maybe, just maybe, given $35 billion in cash and a desktop operating system monopoly, Microsoft could figure out that people looking for music might want to know exactly what bands we're talking about, and what songs are available.
But, no. In typical Microsoft throw-everything-we-got-and-see-what-sticks fashion, they offer not just music, but music videos, "bios" and even concert tickets...without identifying what music, or music videos, or "bios" or concert tickets we might be talking about.
End result: I hit the delete button.
Meanwhile, Apple sends me an iTunes update with all kinds of new music identified right there in the email.
End result: I download an old Monty Python album, "Matching Tie and Handkerchief," that I haven't heard in twenty years. Great stuff.
I don't know about you, but I'm betting that anybody interested in "old radio shows"--as Microsoft proudly offered in its desperate buy-one-get-five email--is not surfing the net for their music.
I Am Not Making This Up
The content contained in this blog represents the opinions of Mr. Matthews. Mr. Matthews also acts as an advisor and clients advised by Mr. Matthews may hold either long or short positions in securities of various companies discussed in the blog based upon Mr. Matthews' recommendations.
Posted by Jeff Matthews at 10:15 AM