January 31, 2007

Industry Transformation

Most of you know that I spent my formative years working at Lands' End and Eddie Bauer during the heyday of the catalog industry. Since the late 1990s, I've watched the art of cataloging implode, as customers migrated from old-school catalog marketing to the magic of online retailing.

Of course, my industry isn't the first to be transformed by technology. Numerous industries are being obliterated by the internet as we speak.

So much of what you read, either in the press, or in the blogosphere, is being written by folks enjoying the updraft of their industry. Folks writing about social media or search engine marketing or podcasting enjoy the myriad benefits of expansion.

It helps to follow bloggers in industries being obliterated by technology. There are many tips, techniques, and life-lessons to be learned from these folks.

Lefsetz Letter: A blog written by music industry veteran Bob Lefsetz. This is an R-rated blog, be wary of language. That being said, Bob "opens the books". His writing style helps you feel what he feels, as he describes his angst with the downward spiral of the music industry. There will be a day when social media bloggers feel the way Bob feels. When that happens, we will really have something compelling to digest in the blogosphere.

Joe Wikert's Publishing 2020 Blog: Joe's blog approaches the transformation of his industry with optimism. Joe looks to the future of publishing, offering suggestions and ways to ride the wave of transformation.

Library Crunch: I dare you to find an institution being transformed more by technology than libraries. Michael Casey describes what he calls "A Library 2.0 Perspective".

The Daily Nightly: This is NBC's companion blog to their Nightly News program. Brian Williams and his staff author two or three posts a day that complement what will be aired that evening. More important, they share their personal feelings and emotions, stuff they simply cannot share on television.

We all like to read about what is new and interesting, we like to absorb the "next big thing". Increasingly, I learn more from folks who are being run out of business or are being seriously changed by "the next big thing".

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