The Idea Dude

CONNECTING THE DOTS ONE AT A TIME

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Who recommended you?

The power of mass recommendation couldn't have been more clear this past week. Firstly, the announcement that Last.fm was bought by CBS for $280 million US dollars. It represents the largest Web 2.0 acquisition in the UK to date. Last.fm connects listeners with similar tastes and boasts 15 million members since they launched 5 years ago. A hard act to top? iLike did just that. iLike announced the integration of their iTunes recommendation sidebar with Facebook. Within a week, they signed on over 1 million users up from their original 1,200 bringing their servers to their knees. Not bad for a start up that is not even a year old but carries some heavy backing from the likes TickerMaster VC, Vinod Khosler and MTV co-founder Bob Pittman to the tune of $15 million dollars.

The question would be without Facebook, how fast would they have ramped up in the next 12 months. I would guess they would have been extremely happy with 100,000 users. Instead they were making frantic calls all over the Bay area in search of servers. It reminds me of what Andy Sernovitz said at Sobcon07 and analogy of Paul Revere in the Tipping Point. It is about finding the right connector and the right medium to disseminate your message. iLike could have taken a full page post in every local and national newspaper and would not have had the same effect. Instead, they associated themselves with a highly popular site with a demographic that is actively looking for friends and who can be easily identified by the permanent appendages to their ears that is connected on the other end to iPods. Maybe Apple should buy them while they are cheap!

Talk about timing...sweet!

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