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September 27, 2004

The Leadership Collection...Stupid

Every once in a while I hear or read something a business has done and hear Tom Peters' voice shouting "Stupid! Stupid! Stupid!" (If you've listened to his remarkable book "Re-Imagine" you know exactly what I mean.) It's usually when a business is really close to having a great idea and then FUBARs it. This was the case with Soundview's new Leadership Collection executive book summaries on audio...

What's wrong with executive book summaries on audio you might ask? Nothing. In fact, it's a brilliant idea. Executives don't have time to read. OK, that's not true but at they are probably among the busiest of all human beings. Throw the information they need to digest into audio format then and let them listen to it in their car or at the gym. Seems reasonable...

Expect for the fact that these summaries are available only in the "exclusive Audiofy BookChip format". So exclusive I'm sure that very few people will actually be able to listen to them. I have an iPod which is the most popular portable listening device on the market. Can I listen to these book summaries on my iPod? Nope.

I commend Soundview on bringing these products to market but I really wish they had thought a little more about it. Are people really going to buy their Audiofy player just to listen to this? Didn't Audible try this and fail with their "Otis" product? It's not rocket science. Put together killer content in a format that can readily be consumed by the masses. Do that and you'll feel the customer love...