Tweetdeck just got acquired by Ubermedia. 20% of the tweets sent daily are from Ubermedia apps with all the other Twitter clients acquired recently (Echofon, Twidroid and UberTwitter).
I know in person both Bill Gross and Iain Dodsworth and respect their work and I like to know and have good relationships with my competition (yes I look like I put my head in the oven on that video, it was the filter on the lens). Congratulations to both of them and all the other members of the Ubermedia family, that’s pretty huge and I wish you complete success.
I wonder how Twitter feels about 20% of the tweets sent daily being now under control of a single company. This makes our space very interesting since there aren’t that many independent players left.
I see it personally as very good news for Seesmic, since Twitter started last year to take control of its own clients acquiring Tweetie and building applications on all platforms we have immediately changed our focus to the business / corporate space. What I think Bill is building is very different. My guess is that it’s all going to be about building traffic and having the conversations happen within the apps themselves and even outside of the social networks themselves, mostly monetizing on advertising.
Think about how our space changed in just a year. My own friend and investor Michael Arrington was announcing us dead. It makes it even more of a personal challenge for me to prove him how wrong he is about Seesmic not able to adapt. I might not always run fast but I ran two marathons last year and I keep running until I pass the finish line. Success, that is.
We’re taking Seesmic in a complete opposite direction that definitely won’t compete with that and I am really happy about it, I think Tweetdeck and Seesmic Desktop will look very different soon and our users will also be very different. There is room for both. This is why it’s good news for us, different focus, less competition. I might be wrong, but that’s how I feel.
We recently focused on better supporting more social networks (see our plugin marketplace which supports 60+ services), extending our footprint to more mobile platforms with iPhone, Android, Blackberry and Windows Phone7 that unlocked Nokia for us today, huge.
I can see Seesmic competing less and less with Ubermedia daily. All our products will remain free but everything we are building is dedicated to the professional users (community managers, marketing professionals building brands, anyone monitoring word of mouth, sales forces using it to generate leads…) and yes, we will have a pro, paid offering dedicated to them.
We have also announced a partnership and investment from Salesforce which already has exciting results as we are getting many Chatter (now free) users on Seesmic for internal use. Think about it, we have unlocked another level in the growing real time communication game, internal. We already have enterprise users on Seesmic Desktop (private beta) not even adding Twitter or Facebook to it but using it as a new way to see what’s happening in the company, using columns displaying sales, R&D, HR, management conversations. We have other enterprise users using Seesmic to take feedback from Twitter and take it internally to discuss and archive it, then reply. We see sales teams using Seesmic to get context about and generate leads. This is very, very far away from a Twitter client… They need very specific sets of features and a strong connection to the inside of their businesses.
Mobile is huge for Twitter and Facebook, it’s going to be huge in enterprise. Being a consumer application up to now has helped us build great applications (you get your butt kicked all day long and can learn from it) because what people want to use at work is what they got used to use daily, Twitter, Facebook, and all the great apps around it. If I take a look at most enterprise and business software, most of the time there is nothing on mobile and that is a huge opportunity for us as everyone wants to be able to manage his business from a smartphone. Expect our mobile clients to get packed with powerful business features at a fast pace.
I have never been that busy and excited by what we are doing, I spend my days meeting small business owners, community managers, CMOs, CIOs and even visionary enterprise CEOs. We’re running as fast as we can to make customers happy and it’s very rewarding. We won’t shut down our consumer base for sure, we’re just focused on the business part as managing the word of mouth and managing your company as you communicate on Facebook is becoming standard. We’re solving a very simple problem helping businesses manage all their external and internal social presence in one application on all platforms.
We moved from a space with lots of competition and no revenue (yet) into a space with not much competition and customers asking how they can pay you more to go faster.
I can’t help adding to that post the pic Scoble took of Marc Benioff and myself. I am so excited to work so closely with Marc and his teams in our new playground.