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Foment, Ferment and Froth
(June 14, 2006) It's one of those moments. The rapidly transforming online recruiting space is undergoing a period of intense change. The current crop of entrepreneurs are morphing the landscape in the way that the swallows do each year in San Juan Capistrano.
It's a seasonal thing. Our industry is so tremendously boom and bust that the production of really smart innovation is tied to the peaks of the economic cycle. As things heat up, our great entrepreneurs discover new and interesting ways to deliver candidates as the market becomes driven by scarcity.
Here are today's key headlines:
The fourth, and more profound story involves the fact that each of these items was covered on the other guy's blog. In fact, the Blogosphere reverberated with the news. The echo chamber is absolutely at its best when the blogging universe is reporting about itself.
So, what are these stories and what do they mean?
Joel Cheesman, the most visible figure in Online Recruiting's Search Engine Optimization industry, has opened the doors of a new advertising service. Cheezads allows bloggers to make a little pocket change (like Google's adsense) to subsidize their work. Less automated and more business like than its progenitor (adsense), Cheezads are the opening salvo for a product that will change our market.
SimplyHired is rapidly evolving into a competitor for Adicio. Although the buzz and media focus will be on the commercialization of MySpace, the real news is that SimplyHired is getting really good at powering other people's career sites. As the original players in the "powered by" space start to show their age (many of them are a decade old), the market opens for newer, more nimble players. Just like their ancestors, the SimplyHired, Indeed, Jobster (when it focuses on job ads) continuum are all about data acquisition and management.
The third piece of this puzzle is Jobster's introduction of a cross-posting service. By encouraging their customers to place their ads on GoogleBase and Craigslist, Jobster opens the doors for targeted advertising placement and measurement. We're betting that a number of owners of Job Ad Distribution companies are drooling at the prospect of a Jobster alignment.
Finally, the blogosphere itself is a part of this emerging story. In today's market, product launch is easier, cheaper and faster. The reverberating echo chamber that is the recruiting blog universe amplifies and underlines nuance, turning it into a story. The three headlines would have been footnotes at other times. Each of the players are expert at self-promotion in the blog scene.
That's because things are going faster. Change itself is speeding up. Google, the Microsoft of its generation is beginning to fade. It has accomplished a life cycle of activity in a fraction of the time that it took Microsoft to deliver the same feats. The speeding up phenomenon happens even faster at an economic peak.
Jobster may well be remembered for its meteoric rise and its introduction of speed into the Recruitment market's product development vocabulary. Jobster makes Cheezman possible, not in a backroom sense but in an enabling sense. The Cheezad offering would have been considered a beta test a generation ago. Today, being willing to receive email without a hint of a customer is enough to launch a business.
We really are reaching a peak in the economic cycle. It may well continue for another couple of years. When the market is hot enough to sustain offerings like these, more are going to explode onto the scene very shortly.
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