Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Using Online Lead Generation Firms for...Recruiting?

So it's been a very long time since I last posted on my blog. I guess I can't complain too much...things have been extremely busy for me, which is normally a good thing when it comes to business. I think. ;) My only worry is if I begin to routinely start off each one of my new blog posts with "it's been a long time since..."

So I came across a very interesting firm the other week. The name? Root Markets, founded by Seth Goldstein. The idea behind the firm? Create an online marketplace where people can trade...Internet leads. The idea goes like this: instead of being at the mercy of marketers and advertisers, let consumers regain power by controlling their own online data. Oh yeah, and make money doing it.

Here's a scenario of how a typical transaction might occur on Root Exchange, the online marketplace set up by Goldstein's firm: 1) Using an add-on to Firefox called Attention Recorder, you literally keep track of your personal searches on search engines, sites you click on, etc. 2) You store all this tracking information in a private online vault that you'll be able to share selectively with others. 3) Online firms, such as Mortgage providers, can pay you money if you allow them to know that you just ordered the latest book about purchasing homes from Amazon. 4) This signals to the online firm that you might be open to "pitches," such as loans for a home.

So what's the big deal?

What if Root Exchange (which currently is doing mortgage leads, auto loans, and insurance) becomes an online marketplace for recruiters?

In a sense, this is what agencies and staffing firms have already been doing for quite some time.

Except, it's translating it into a Web 2.0 (yes, had to use it...can't think of something else to call it) experience. And that's the key. It's an experience for the user. Which is why the potential for it blowing up "could" be real. If you don't believe that experiences are the way of the web right now...just read the news about the latest deal that Google made with YouTube. The main appeal of YouTube is the experience. And apparently it's worth $1.6 billion to some firms (I'm depressed at the fact that I didn't execute against the idea of a video sharing site sooner...but I digress...).

All I know is...I would not be surprised at all if some recruiting firm has already talked with Mr. Goldstein or is trying to put something together like this. And if they haven't...what's the holdup?!?!

Needless to say, you can bet I'll be looking into this matter myself. ;)