Contact Us

Use the form on the right to contact us.

You can edit the text in this area, and change where the contact form on the right submits to, by entering edit mode using the modes on the bottom right. 

Name *
Name
Phone
Phone

333 Gellert Boulevard #218
Daly City, CA, 94015

650-227-3280 #101

Ignite X is a recognized, integrated marketing agency in Silicon Valley that delivers content marketing, executive branding, and public relations services.  

Blog

Ignite X specializes in helping technology startups grow their market visibility and brand. We bring expertise, connections and tenacity to helping brands break through the noise. Here are some of the things we've learned along the way. 

Filtering by Category: Bubble

Tough Times Forge New Opportunities for Media & PR

Carmen Hughes

Today’s economic downturn is affecting not just banking, housing and automotive, but all industries. As businesses adjust to weather this severe economic storm through reduced spending and layoffs, expensive advertising budgets are among the first to get slashed and the media industry is being hit hard.  Print advertising at newspapers was down 16 percent in Q2 and it is steadily contracting.  While more ad dollars are still being spent online versus print, Q3 experienced for the first time a slight decline in online ad spending.  Print media in particular is being impacted; Time Inc. is undergoing significant layoffs across its multiple titles such as People, Fortune, and Sports Illustrated.  Condé Nast was recently forced to let go of staff from its newly launched Portfolio, and Forbes underwent a restructuring to combine its web and print operations. 

 

Given the climate, print media has had to make tough decisions.  With the bleak outlook, some are testing out new approaches and introducing innovative changes.  The Christian Science Monitor and more recently PC Magazine, the bellwether of tech journalism, announced plans to start publishing in a 100% online-only format.  There is a small silver lining for online ad revenues; the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) in conjunction with PricewaterhouseCoopers recently reported that internet advertising rose slightly in the third quarter, up 2% from the second quarter, an 11% rise from the same period last year.  Yankee Group predicts that the online ad market will reach more than $50 billion by 2011.

 

Traditional publications are also realizing the benefits of delivering content online to supplement print issues.  The New York Times's Pogue O'Matic and Time's Channel Podcasts are great examples that continue to operate and produce print issues but have started to post supplementary angles to their print stories in their online outlets.  The online sections are giving journalists additional space, where they can write a follow-on piece, include new perspectives, mention other players in the space, incorporate product information, post a video interview, etc.

 

With more ad dollars moving to the web, news outlets still have to carefully balance the mix of interactive features within their news content so that readers’ overall experience is kept in check.  Incorporating various interactive, multimedia formats and social media tools (podcasts, video chats, streaming video, photo slides) enables media outlets to engage readers and push their content out to a broader audience of readers.  Increasingly, online news sites are catering to a growing number of readers who want to share, vote, comment on or blog about the article; thus new social media buttons increasingly accompany the articles to support readers’ needs. As print publications expand their news coverage online and include new ways of engaging readers, high tech PR agencies will be afforded extended opportunities to collaborate with their clients on how they too need to leverage these expanding channels of communication, information sharing and reader engagement. 

How Frothy Can it Get?

Carmen Hughes

froth1.jpg The WSJ posted a great piece today about Silicon Valley’s unique barometers for predicting a bubble burst. The article accurately points to key indicators that were abundant during the dot.com era. Silly names, ridiculous company services (like this one highlighted in TechCrunch’s complimentary post titled “Bubble Indicators.”), recycled dot.com ideas that flopped, and over funding in saturated sectors.

There are still several more indicators that have yet to surface, including:

  • Absence of office space
  • Extremely tight housing/rental market in and around Silicon Valley/SF
  • Job-seeking nomads descending in droves into Silicon Valley/SF
  • Entry-level candidates demanding company perks typically reserved for senior staff or management
  • Excessive burn rates by startups on marketing

Thankfully, the dot.com/stock market meltdown resulted in tighter controls and public skepticism that largely prevents companies that have zero revenues from going IPO en mass.

A perusal of TechCrunch’s company archives show that since around mid-2005 about 1,800 startups have been profiled. It would be interesting to find out the percentage of these that are actually making money. Further, many more startups exist that weren’t able to make the cut into TechCrunch, so we clearly have a lot of fledgling companies looking to gain traction, user adoption, and revenues or that are hoping to be acquired by a deep pocketed, white knight.