Magazine article Marketing

OPINION: Brave New World Is Rising Again and This Time It Won't Be a Bust

Magazine article Marketing

OPINION: Brave New World Is Rising Again and This Time It Won't Be a Bust

Article excerpt

1999 was an interesting year.

It was my final period as a professor in the US and I have vivid memories of executive MBA students literally running from class during breaks to trade internet stocks over the phone.

I moved back to the UK that year and found the same new economy buzz here. I attended presentations of brave new economy business models, which didn't appear to make any sense, but did appear to be making money.

I ran a survey of the 600 MBA students at London Business School that year. The results suggested that 86% of the graduating class envisaged a career in a dotcom start-up and that they were primarily interested in courses in entrepreneurship. That year, several leading consulting companies failed to recruit their required levels of MBA graduates. Most of those graduates were turning down six-figure salaries with established consulting houses for equity shares in new ventures.

Traditional advertising was expected to be superseded by banner advertising and web pages. Amazing brands such as boo.com and Yahoo! suddenly became the power brands. The employees of these firms were young, cool and casually dressed. There was an 'old' economy and then there was the new one. There were businesses built from bricks - leaden and boring; and those built from clicks - exciting and profitable.

And then the bubble burst and marketing reverted to the old grey world from which it had ventured. The new economy died away.

Except it didn't quite die. …

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