Book Review Economy

The Long Tail

I have been reading this book on and off for last few weeks, finally finishing the last 100 pages yesterday night.

The book was “The Long Tail” by Chris Anderson (Editor Wired Magazine). The book talks in detail how the Long Tail of endless choices is reshaping the world economics by creating unlimited demand.  It talks about how the Digital World like Amazon, eBay, Rhapsody, iTunes and others are changing the fundamentals on Music and online industry – they have Zero cost of holding inventory which allows them to carry unlimited choices. So customers now have a choice to get music hitherto they could not have found in a mainstream store. It adds how consumers are now becoming Tastemakers and Buyers snatching the power of selection from Magazine Editors and Walmart Buyers.

The book closes with talking about 3 types of hits:

1) Type 1: Authentic Top Down hits: These are like your World Cup and Olympics

2) Type 2: Synthetic Top Down hits: These are lame products that are marketed and hence created to be hits

3) Type 3: Bottom-Up Hits: These rise on word of mouth and community support

Out of this, Type 1 will continue to do well. Type 3 will do even better, but it is Type 2 that will suffer.

Overall, I enjoyed reading the book and will recommend it for anyone connected with Online Industry and with Retail/Consumers. I just wish Chris Anderson using 50% less of 230 pages he currently used to talk the same concept repeatedly at many places in the book.

The Long Tail by Chris Anderson

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