The Long Tail [Book Review]

Longtail CoverWow.

Where to begin with this one.

Even though this book was released a few years ago, the concepts and contents of this book will probably be relevant for eternity, as long as there are means for abundant choice. I highly recommend everyone  read this, particularly if you are in either business or technology, as it is relevant to both fields. (specifically: marketing / internet technology)

Essentially, “The Long Tail” refers to a powerlaw curve, where the vast majority of VOLUME is comprised of very few products, and the vast maority of PRODUCTS individually pull a very small number of sales. (The example used by the author is comparing books / CD’s offered by Wal-Mart, which sells only hits, versus the books / CDs sold by Amazon.com, which sells pretty much everything you can imagine). It’s a contrasting between “hits” and “niches”. In a situation where choice is abundant (such as on amazon) a Long-tail distribution will often emerge.

But the true strength of this book is the insight in both the case-studies and applications. Continue reading