Friday, May 18, 2012

Facebook: The perfect IPO

Posted by Joe Crivelli
By the headlines you would think that the Facebook IPO was a colossal failure. “Was the Facebook Deal Overhyped?” asks CNBC. “Facebook IPO More Whimper than Bang,” exclaims CBS. “Facebook IPO Gets Chilly Greeting on a Cool Morning,” notes Forbes. In the middle of the afternoon on Friday, I walked past the TV in our office lobby and the headline on CNN was “Facebook Bang is a Whimper.”

The conventional wisdom was that Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) would be up big-time on its first day of trading. But FB traded flat, with the offering going out at $38.00 a share and closing its first day at $38.23. So naturally the conventional wisdom now is that the IPO was a flop.

But in reality, from an investor relations standpoint, Facebook executed quite possibly the perfect IPO. Every share that was offered to the market got sold. Like every other time in his life that he has entered the arena, Mark Zuckerberg wins. Here’s why.

I dealt with this issue when I wrote about the Groupon IPO last year, and I’ll say it again. An IPO that has a huge first day is a failed IPO. An IPO that trades flat or slightly up on its first day is an IPO that is priced RIGHT and is a successful IPO. By this measure, Facebook is most definitely a successful IPO. The perfect IPO.

Why? Because the underwriters maximized the amount of money that the company raised. They maximized the amount of cash from the IPO that flowed into the company’s coffers.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Facebook IPO: Why I am a Believer

Posted by Greg Matusky
I've got to admit, I am a business idea killjoy. You know the kind of guy who always tells you why a business idea you came up with won't work or how it was tried before and failed. I blame it on having been around the block a few times, and having seen the winners and losers. And I am right a whole lot more than I am wrong.

When my friend told me about a new patented square cup that allowed advertisers to market squarely on all four sides of a soft drink cup, I told him to pass. When another one approached me touting Groupon, I urged him to Google "Groupon hate" and see the scores of small businesses seething with venom against the online coupon business. How's Groupon's stock price holding up?

So it's with great interest that I watch the naysayers line up to take shots at Facebook, now that the company's IPO is imminent. Just days before the IPO, GM de-friended Facebook, withdrawing its $10 million ad spend, claiming that Facebook ads simply do not sell cars. Strange timing, indeed. And then there are the pundits who claim that at a $90 billion or more valuation, Facebook is at its zenith, with nowhere to go with its stock price but down.

Well, get this. I can't kill the joy over the future of Facebook -- and I am eating some crow to say so. A year and a half ago, in my 2011 prognosis of PR trends, I predicted Facebook fatigue would plague Mr. Zuckerberg's social network, as hipsters and college kids came to see Facebook as their parents' social network and search for the new, new thing in online venting and viewing.

Friday, May 4, 2012

Hyperink wants to pull your blog off the web

Posted by Sara Nugent
Today's topic on GThink: "Next-Generation Publishing Platform Hyperink Wants To Transform Blogs Into Books," covered by TechCrunch.

Abstract: Hyperink, a next-generation digital book publishing platform, is debuting a service which helps bloggers create short books from their existing content. The startup will help any aspiring author write, design, publish, market, and sell a book without any up-front fees. A staff editor curates a blogger’s posts, structures them into a narrative format, and creates a book in PDF, epub, and mobi formats. The book is then published to Hyperink’s marketplace, Amazon Kindle, B&N Nook, and Kobo. (iBooks is coming soon). Hyperink CEO Kevin Goa says that not every blog will have enough compelling content for a short book, but he believes there's an opportunity for thought leaders to package their blog posts into offline formats.

The takeaway: The debut of Hyperink’s “Blog to Books” offering is part of a next wave of services to help companies make digital content work better for them. Blogging is not one and done. It should be done and then leveraged across multiple communications channels to extract maximum value from it. The mark of great content is like the incredible, edible egg -- it can be repurposed in a thousand ways. 

That's what G thinks. What do you think?
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