Is Like.com going to make it?

Remember when they launched in November after their strategic shift from Riya to Like? I don’t quite understand why they were so quick to change, but people make decisions I don’t understand all the time. It appears the decision has not paid off. I read that they raised enough to last through 2009 and go through 3 iterations. If the Riya was #1 and Like is #2, I’d bet they’re thinking about that 3rd iteration by now, especially considering how silent the CEO blog has been since the beginning of the year.

I have a hard time buying this explanation:

Today Riya is using the organic traffic to see how changes improve monetization, repeat usage, etc. The business is in “fine-tune” mode. Every change improves the lifetime value of every user and the marginal profit contribution of every dollar to be spent on marketing. We haven’t poured gasoline in the engine to accelerate the traffic. We are tuning the user experience as measured by the economics of the business.

Did Google, YouTube, MySpace, Facebook, Twitter, or any of the recent viral growth success stories have to “pour gasoline” by spending money on marketing? But, who knows, and at least I learned something useful about measuring. It’s not to say it won’t succeed, but given the money and hype put into it, it seems rather shaky.

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