Monday, August 29, 2011

DealChicken | Facebook's good news -- or bad?

The social networking giant has dumped its daily deals site, barely five months after it was launched. Facebook's retreat comes as Gannett expands DealChicken to more than 50 markets by year's end.

Earlier: warning about industry leader Groupon's slowing growth.


  1. Interesting.

    "Groupon, which is girding for an initial public offering, is universally acknowledged as the market leader in daily deals.

    However, HitWise Experian analyst Bill Tancer said Groupon has experienced almost a 50 percent traffic drop to its website since its peak in the second week of June 2011, compared with last week."


  3. I think the issue is that Gannett pretty much requires that everything be PERFECT before it's released to the public, and so they spent so much time on DealChicken while others pushed their stuff out half-finished-but-still-usable. Now they're committed to a rollout schedule.

    This has happened to me in the past, when I've worked at Gannett.

  4. 12:16 PM Gannett releases things only when they are PERFECT? You must be kidding! What a laugh! Ever heard the infamous phrase "It's good enough" that was issued several years back by Gannett? I can't recall anything developed and launched by Gannett that has even been close to perfect -- especially on the digital side. What a joke!

  5. Wave 2 obits software again down this past weekend - twice. Yeah, team!

  6. In my too-long stint at Gannett, strategy and projects were pretty much out-of-the-blue "Here you go, good luck, it's your fault if it doesn't work."

    With chronic disconnection especially reaching scale by about 2005, they created a lot of their own problems (and failures) by not seeking at all any input from the people who would implement highly flawed notions of "perfection."

  7. 12:43
    I think 12:16 means "Perfect" by Gannett's standards....meaning to their satisfaction.

    I agree with 12:43.....getting something to market at 90% right today is much better than "Perfect" a year or more from now....unless you have to worry about product recalls.

    I've seen too many high-level managers over-analyze projects to death out of fear (cover thy ass) or just to justify their position.

  8. 1:35, 1:31 here. I think that's what 12:16 meant as well. Yet the disconnect between launch and viability (i.e., results)was profound. I can only speak of circa 2005-2010, compared to 1985-2005.

    At one point they passed out "morale" buttons for staff to wear (which is insipid in the first place). The read "We make the difference!" I wore mine. I put a lot of my life into Gannett.

    But I crossed out the "the" and wrote "NO." "We make no difference." Why? Because there was in fact no connection between the high-level "cover thy ass" types even local on-site, the managers below them left twisting in the wind and their staffs even worse.

    Hardly conducive to cheerleading.

  9. I'd like to see some stats on DealChicken. The branding art is off-putting, personally. Juvenile if not infantile.

    From a branding standpoint, the market is evidently limited to appealing to women: a cute little chick.

    Even with the absurdly meaningless name, I could have come up with a more inclusive, less annoying icon. Oh, wait. They sent my job to India. No need for local input such as in contests company-wide.

    That would imply input from the unwashed masses when surely Gannett's doing just fine in the lame category.

  10. 12:58 p.m., don't even get me started on that POS obits software!

  11. Facebook getting out of the category....Groupon already showing signs that their model is highly flawed....and Gannett goes rushing in blindly. Sounds like the formula.

  12. Gannett doesn't release anything when it's perfect. Everything I've been told during my 20 years in this company is either "better done than good" (for video training when on deadline) and / or "good enough is good enough" (for everything else).

    The fact that Facebook is apparently getting out of the coupon thing should be frightening for Gannett. DealChicken was 1) late to market 2) kind of amateurish and 3) was not as good as Groupon.

    If the market was still expanding and experiencing huge growth DealChicken might have had a chance. But with Groupon experiencing a slowdown and Facebook giving up on couponing, it's pretty clear that the whole social shopping deal du jour thing may be coming to an end. At least the easy part of it. That promises to be bad news for DealChicken.

  13. Gannett tends toward the also-rans, buying or starting niche projects too late with products that aren't as solid as the competition. How are Cozi and Moms Like Me doing? The Internet is Darwinism at an exponential rate. Either you hit the market early with something great or you get left in the dust.

  14. If you go to "recent deals" on the Louisville Deal Chicken page, 4 of the 8 deals garnered less than 10 total sales. Today's deal doesn't look one has even been sold. I know it's only a few weeks old, but those can't be good numbers.

  15. And the branding, it's like out of a Stephen King novel. Someone paid. Someone signed off. I am absolutely certain that both still rake in the bucks as if proof of their astounding genius, people drowning in the lower cabins.

    Out of that toxic place, I still solicit opinions from former clients because I had a personal relationship with them instead of some "consolidation."

    This profession was, after all, my life and I was good at my job before the corporate dictae arrived.

    Think about if for just one single second: "DealChicken" wasn't needed.

    And especially this:

    No one on top -- today, these completely out-of-place as regards the business they oversee, reaping millions while laying off thousands -- today, no one on top has any experience with journalism, content or media.

    They are salespeople. Nothin' against stoking the fires of profit (salespeople Gannett treats like shit, one person missing her mark in a million-dollar account, missing her mark by 50 buck, commission denied, she crying in a hal way), but there's is just personal aggrandizement and the rest of us are fools to them.

    I am out of Gannett. Money is tight. I don't care.

    As for the cheerleaders, knock yerself out. I was one of 'em. And this stuff isn't "in the past." Gannett's abject view of humanity itself lives fetid.

    There are not outsourced-designed Web sites. No happy people as depicted. In essence, I worked there, I did a good job under conditions (and the corp trolls can access my their corp reviews, no ego claim).

    Yet Gannett is too bad to believe. An entire uber culture swirling and yet, as always, warm and comfy, certain that their isolation is god like.

  16. I think this is just more of the same old re hashed ideas by Gannett. I don't think many people will sign up on deal chicken and they certainly won't return unless there are some real savings on products people like.


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