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Best of TOC, 3rd Edition by O'Reilly TOC Team

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Chapter 3. Revenue Models

Getting the Content Out There Isn’t Enough Anymore

By Jenn Webb

Content is still king, but now it has to share its crown. Justo Hidalgo (@justohidalgo), co-founder of 24symbols, believes added value and personalized services are just as important as the content itself. He explains why in the following interview.

In what contexts does content aggregation create the most value?

Justo Hidalgo: Companies that take content and contribute added value for readers are generally better positioned to succeed. Specifically, I believe content aggregation is useful in the following contexts:

  • Hubs — Why did The Huffington Post gain so much success? Why is Spotify increasing its number of users constantly? And why is Netflix in trouble? There are of course many reasons, but one is particularly clear: Users want hubs where they can find most, if not all, of the content they want. Content aggregation enables just that. While creating silos of information can be valuable in specific niche markets, it does not work in mass markets unless your brand recognition is immensely high.
  • Value addition — Social recommendation is a typical yet good example of value addition to content, as is adding information about a title’s author and surrounding context. This meta-information can be manually or automatically added. I believe in the power of machine learning and data mining technologies applied to this area, along with human expertise.
  • Discovery — While having thousands or millions ...

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