September 10, 2007

The Long Tail and The Fat Head

There is an interesting marketing hypothesis called The Long Tail. The Long Tail states that companies with low costs of inventory and distribution (like web powerhouses Amazon and Netflix) can derive substantial income, even a majority of income, by selling unpopular items to tiny market segments. There seems to be significant data to back up this idea.

As usual, a whole lot of marketing people with low reading comprehension have completely misunderstood this concept. They think it means they should focus their marketing efforts on trying to sell their products to light users or non-users in their category.

I have dubbed this phenomenon The Fat Head. The Fat Head states that only a fathead would waste his marketing dollars trying to sell golf balls to tennis players.

Unfortunately, there is no shortage of fatheads.


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