It is critical to bundle all future variable costs of supporting the customer in order to fairly estimate the future contribution.
I think one thing that may have happened with both Facebook and Zynga is that they may have waited too long to go public. They got particularly cute on that front.
Having an investor on your board of directors who is naive about public markets or finds them complex or scary is non-optimal.
It's really hard to run a business against somebody who is not acting as if it were in business.
Marketing executives like big budgets, as big budgets make it easier to grow the top line.
The first time you went to eBay, you probably didn't do a transaction.
Venture capital is unscalable. Production equals the time each partner has.
Almost everybody who thinks about local thinks about daily deals, but companies like OpenTable and Zillow and Yelp are all getting their money from the local market.
Facebook has stitched together your social graph. The idea of an interest graph is to bring together everyone that has shared interests. If I can isolate the people who are into mountain biking in Marin, in one place, the ability to put ads against that is really high.
I have never seen Jeff Bezos, Marc Benioff, or Reed Hastings complain about being public. Nor have they ever argued that being public prevented them from doing things with a long-term focus.
I think one of the key differentiators I bring to the table as a venture capitalist is a solid understanding of the public markets and how they operate.
If one asserts that buying customers below what they charge them is a corporate strategy, this is in essence an arbitrage game, and arbitrage games rarely last.
If the goal is to build companies that maximize long-term equity value, then optimizing corporate performance in a way that Wall Street appreciates is obviously critical to that goal.
It's not for everybody to tweet, it's for everybody to follow. The more people figure that out, they see it's RSS-plus. It's literally the place you check for information.
Many consumer Internet business executives are loyalists of the Lifetime Value model, often referred to as the LTV model or formula. Lifetime value is the net present value of the profit stream of a customer.
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