JP Rangaswami in his “confused of calcutta” blog has something very interesting to say:
If you (re)build it they will come “… The “long tail” implies that the Internet is ushering in an age when micro-niches will dominate, at the expense of mass-culture monoliths. Sure, the Net makes it easier for us all to find the bizarre fetishes and tiny cliques that we are longing for. But one thing has always bugged me about this theory: How do you make a business out of that, unless you’re a big aggregator? I read that, and somewhere in my head a bulb fused. Or maybe it lit up. Pretty much every serious argument we’re having, every conversation we need to continue, is about some form of Big versus some form of Small. Blefuscu versus Lilliput. And we use concepts like expertise and authenticity and reliability and affordability and freedom and choice to try and win the arguments. And the concepts we use land up polarising the debates. Which made me think…. …. .It’s all about trust .” (for the whole argument do go to the original post)
The original post contains all the relevant hyperlink background on this ongoing discussion of what marketing might be, could be or ought to be when the advancing edge of communication is instantaneous and available to all. I think JP nailed it.