To Be (Vertical) or Not to Be

A lot of the comments that Nate Elliott, an analyst at Jupiter Research, voices in a recent Businessweek article about social networks resonate with me. He speaks to the opportunity that “niche-oriented networks,” or as I’ve called them “vertical social networks,” have in creating significant and sustainable business models, in contrast to some of the prevailing popular general-interest ones of the day. He also touches upon the subject of “social commerce,” utilizing uses social networking for people for “directly influencing each other’s purchase decisions.” The article is worth the read, highlighting some healthy skepticism to the space.

David Beisel

David Beisel is a co-founder and Partner at NextView Ventures. He has been focused on early stage Internet startups his entire career, both as an entrepreneur and venture capitalist. As an investor in the digital media space, David was most recently a Vice President at Venrock and previously a Principal at Masthead Venture Partners. Prior to becoming a venture capitalist, David co-founded Sombasa Media, an e-mail marketing company best known for its flagship product BargainDog. Sombasa was successfully acquired by About.com where David served as Vice President of Marketing. David holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and an AB in Economics, magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, from Duke University. He also founded and leads the Boston Innovators Group, an organization which holds quarterly entrepreneur events drawing a thousand attendees.

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