Platform Thinking in Business Development: Why Companies Like AirBNB are so Successful

Popular booking application, AirBNB, allows consumers to book reservations and events that are out of town, by providing important information about these venues, which can help its’ users make decisions.  Users can add information in the form of reviews, ratings and photos. AirBNB uses the platform business model.

The platform business model is a scalable business model. It takes advantage of technology to connect people and organizations in order to exchange services and things of value (Parker, 2). Less viable today, is the pipe business model, where stuff is consumed in a linear fashion, like water flowing through a pipe (“Why Business Models Fail..”).

Companies that use the platform business model today are Amazon, YouTube, eBay, Wikipedia, iPhone, Upwork, Twitter, KAYAK, Instagram, AirBNB and Pinterest (Parker, 3).

AirBNB is a company that uses the platform business model approach, and connects to various venues like rental homes out of of the country, and popular reservations, experiences in NY and featured destinations. The platform of AirBNB is a place where consumers can easily access the service that AirBNB has to offer based on the network of connections that the business model enables (Parker, 9).

The “platform” or application of AirBNB has many features of a top-notch platform. The site has a solid, clean user interface in bright, modern colors, simple layout, good color scheme, and an attractive logo. It is simple yet elegant, which gives off vibes of “exploration and connection to external sources.”

AirBNB is a great example of a successful business that started from scratch, but became successful by understanding the importance of platform marketing in order to build customer retention (Parker, 9).
AirBNB

AirBNB

With the platform approach there is a greater user interaction and opportunity for business development. Platform marketing is like the Internet where information congregates rapidly for consumer interaction on social media and forums, Twitter and Facebook. An application that uses platform thinking is YouTube, which has a sleek and simple interface that is poised to host new content, create user engagement, and increase customer retention, by providing opportunities for the music hosted on it’s servers to be shared amongst users, and on Facebook (“Why Business Models Fail..”).

Unlike e-commerce applications online, which use pipe thinking, platform thinking optimizes conversions, analyzing consumer data regularly with modern data-analytics tools (“Why Business Models Fail..”).

These services can grow business as content curators are able to gauge what is popular and interests their consumers, unlike the pipe model that is limited, and only focuses on the products it is selling. Businesses who are interested in long-term growth, and customer engagement should apply platform thinking instead of pipe thinking (“Why Business Models Fail..”).

Meet other digital marketing professionals interested in platform thinking at goElaborate!

 

References

Choudary, Sangeet P. “Why Business Models Fail: Pipes Vs. Platforms.” Wired, https://www.wired.com/insights/2013/10/why-business-models-fail-pipes-us-platforms/. Accessed 10 October 2017.

Parker, Geoffrey G., et al. Platform Revolution: How Networked Markets Are Transforming the Economy And How to Make Them Work For You. W. W. Norton & Company, 2016.

 

 

 

Pinterest vs Tumblr

     

 

          Pinterest and Tumblr are considered curatorial social spaces, according to the NY Times, with the additional blog component for Tumblr. But after the Yahoo buyout of Tumblr, it’s following has become stagnant while Pinterest is coming up strong and predicted to soon rival Twitter in its amount of handlers. Social media has been around for decades but has only started trending now, which means out with the old blog spaces and in with the new real time one sentence life update.

 

 

          Google is the leading data search engine with the ability to image search as well, but while Google has the literal answer for image keywords, Pinterest has the creative answer for users with aesthetics in mind.

The great thing about Tumblr is that it effectively combines a variety of image content under a number of tags that is seen worldwide, and with gaining a following they can choose to get to know you personally via opinion blogs and messages.

 

Forbes Magazine recently did a study on the top four networking applications ranking Facebook ($170 billion), Twitter ($23 billion in stock), and Linkdin ($20 billion) as the top three but Pinterest ($5 billion) is climbing fast in popularity. It’s estimated to go head to head with Twitter in the next year. Surveys say that many of the users are identified females, myself included, but it has no target gender, and male identified users are testing the waters more and more.

 

I recently became a Pinterest convert. I was previously a Tumblr addict adamantly resisting the fact that something new could be better than Tumblr.My partner recommended Pinterest to me because I missed the visual inspiration I got from Tumblr but without the time investment needed to search and sort in comparison to Tumblr and Google.

 

 

          Pinterest brings to the table immediate satisfaction in all things visually pleasing to the eye, the interface allows for quicker browsing and more exploration in order to create personal mood boards in which others can view or you can choose to hide.

 

It’s an excellent time waster without the feeling of wasting time and its impersonal unlike a lot of other networking social media sites whose main focus is  blogging to meet people.

                                

I’ve been through many networking blogs from Xanga to Livejournal, to Myspace each with a target audience and it’s funny to see how they grow and decay leaving way for new social enterprises.

 

http://www.pinterest.com/goelaborate/
http://www.pinterest.com/sotechie/

 

 

 

 

More Brands Joining Instagram

More and more people are falling into the social media craze and a lead captor is Instagram. Instagram is a mobile app that allows users to take photos or videos for the purpose of sharing their life online.  It is now one of the top social platforms and businesses can use this to their advantage.

Instagram currently has more than 500 million users and steadily growing. What does this mean for marketers? That there is a huge platform of consumers waiting to be engaged with. Many businesses are advertising on Instagram for a number of reasons:

  • Simple to use: The app only allows a handful of options for what to post, this gives everyone fair game. There is no annoying spam or pop-up videos/links that usually drive consumers away. But rather it is the same square space that every user has. Allowing businesses to reach consumers in a relatable fashion that is not too overbearing.
  • Creative: Instagram allows businesses to visit their creative side and release content that is unique and specified for their brand.
  • Effective: Visual marketing is becoming increasingly popular as social media marketing continually grows. Consumers are preferring to gain information through sight, and Instagram does just that. If a company is able to draw a consumer in through their pictures and captions they have potential to gain more followers and ultimately customers.
Join in the Fun

Obviously if you’re a brand manager or brand marketer you need to stop what you are doing and set up an Instagram account. Right away for the future of the free world depends on it!

Ok, maybe not the entire free world and perhaps I am being a bit melodramatic. But the fact remains that consumers – more and more of them, are using Instagram, just as they are Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest. And if you’re not including Instagram as part of your social media strategies which should be part of your overall integrated marketing campaigns, you are missing out on a golden opportunity to move that needle.

From the conclusion of the Simply Measured study: ”For brands that continue to hold out and watch as their competition is engaging users and measuring results, 80 cmillion potential customers are being ignored.”

Like what we have to say? Check out our latest blog post: http://goelaborate.com/can-big-data-grow-company/