Re: Newsgator Marketing Problem

I was commenting on Scoble’s piece re NewsGator’s marketing problem, and thought that I might as well post it here.

I have been using NewsGator for a while (and blogged about it), and am happy with it. This is mainly because I spend all my time in Outlook, and use LookOut extensively. If I was not using NewsGator, I would use FeedDemon, which has developed some interesting podcasting support, but falls short of automating the transfer of MP3 files to my phone – mainly because of the lack of folder replication in ActiveSync for SmartPhone (whereas it is exists for PocketPCs).

I also use Bloglines, mainly as an aggregator on the phone or on the go. I have tried NewsGator Mobile – thanks to Greg – but I prefer the way Bloglines organizes feeds and posts, and the user experience that it offers. I actually believe that many people using a application-based aggregator also use Bloglines, hence its perceived market unrivaled dominance.

My main requirement today is still to get my "Read Marks"  and feed directory structure synchronized across the different instances and incarnations, of my aggregator. This is a given with a Web-based aggregator, but I like to have a copy of my feeds on my laptop and my Tablet PC. I caught up with Greg Reinacker at ETech and he confirmed that this functionality was coming. If this works fine, then that might lead me to replace Bloglines by NewsGator Online. What I am doing today is to "Mark All Read" my feeds once I have read everything through NewsGator. Laborious and happening less and less often.

Coming back to the question, what will it take for NewsGator to "prevail" in the consumer space ? Well, one way would be to add a bunch of cool functionality into the free NewsGator Online, but I am not sure that would lead to increased sales of its premium products. Bloglines is easy to use, well done, fast and cheap. Difficult to do better than that.
Focusing on the enterprise/commercial market, and offering a "Microsoft Exchange for Feeds" that offers consistent functionality on Outlook, web and mobile implementations might be NewsGator’s way.

As to other aggregators, I also met with Pito Salas at ETech for a long chat about BlogBridge (now that Robert mentioned it, it is out in the open :-). Their approach to back-end collaborative filtering is interesting, slightly different than Rojo’s (from what I can tell). Net net, most of them do the job fine.

At the end of the day, the biggest differentiator for me will be efficiency: allowing me to read my (soon) 200 feeds  quickly and allowing me to avoid reading duplicate posts as much as possible. Steve Gillmor’s attention.xml will help with that, but I don’t want the reader to make decisions for me, I want suggestions (as to which posts I don’t need to read, as to which ones I should take a look at, etc.).


  • http://globelogger.com/moonwatcher/ Charlie Wood

    You’ve been able to sync your subscriptions and read/unread status today between NewsGator, NewsGator Online, and FeedDemon for quite a while. See Nick Bradbury’s post at
    http://nick.typepad.com/blog/2004/09/ann_feeddemon_1_1.html
    Good stuff!

  • http://www.emergencemarketing.com/archives/2005/06/maybe_you_can_h.php Emergence Marketing

    Maybe you can help me

    Think of this as a “virtual water cooler” conversation with me looking for some inspiration. Hopefully you will engage – and if not, that’s ok too – I am used to talk to myself… As you may know – I…

  • http://profile.typekey.com/deewa/ deewa

    Why not try Bloglines.Bloglines is much better than newsgator. You can synchronize bloglines with blogbot for outlook. Folder hierarchy is synchronized between Outlook and Online via blogbot. It’s much better than newsgator between outlook and online.
    If you like desktop news client, You can use Greatnews to synchronize bloglines like newsgator using feeddemon. Good news is Greatnews is a wonderful free software but feeddemon isn’t.Folder hierarchy is synchronized between Bloglines and Greatnews. Feeddemon doesn’t synchronize Folder hierarchy between newsgator online and itself. Greatnews can be found at :http://www.curiostudio.com/
    If you like newsgator for outlook, don’t worry, blogbot does the same and better job for outlook. blogbot can be found at http://www.blogbot.com/out/.
    Even you uses several computer, you won’t read the same news twice. cause it’s synchronized online, at outlook via blogbot, at desktop by greatnews.
    Bloglines doesn’t offer a desktop service? That’s not true, check out Greatnews!
    newsgator is about to attract you to put money out to their pocket. But bloglines platform strongly supported by blogbot in outlook and gratnews in desktop client is about freedom of goodness of sharing.