Why Jeff Bezos Bought the Washington Post

Bezos buys Wapo

With all the speculation flying around about yesterday’s announcement, I’d thought I’d add a take from the Modus perspective on what may be motivating Mr. Bezos.

Just because the light is shining on the theory that this is a ego/hubris play for Bezos, doesn’t mean that’s where you should be looking. There are three key areas here that make huge business sense for the Amazon juggernaut. We believe Mr. Bezos has no interest in curating the Post’s content and 100% interest in increasing engagement throughout the entire content channel.

Here’s our top 3 reasons why we think Jeff Bezos bought The Post:

1 – Create a short form content anchor for Kindle Fire
Earlier this year Modus was approached by Amazon to port our Discover Music app to the Kindle Fire app store. It was a surprising and interesting experience that showed us that the guys and gals at Kindle store are serious about HTML5 and hybrid apps. The Kindle store is a great place for finding books and novels to read, but may not the first thought for readers when it comes to magazines and daily newspapers.

With The Post as an anchor in the Kindle Fire store, and a world class newspaper experience built tailor made for the Kindle, could Bezos increase consumer engagement with intra-daily and daily content?

2- Introduce Amazon ID as OAUTH sign in
Move over Facebook, Twitter, and Google IDs. With Amazon ID as the standard to login into the walled content garden, then publishers can enjoy a revenue share model for click through purchases instead of paying for eyeballs only. Way more upside for publishers and much higher conversion rates when all ads are tailored to the consumer tracking intelligence that Amazon already has on all of us (I have to admit I still get weirded out by how well Amazon anticipates what I want to buy next).

3- Embedded Catalog pages for advertising & One-Click purchases
And oh, by the way, FORGET TRADITIONAL ADVERTISING ALTOGETHER, Amazon is smart and knows that they can eventually replace static ads with embedded catalog pages. Imagine reading an article about the upcoming Marine Corps Marathon and in the article is a swipe-able carousel of running shoes, IN YOUR SIZE, ready for you to tap and purchase without ever getting re-directed to Amazon.com? (and yes Jeff, if you’re reading, Modus Create would love to build that for you) in fact, we’ve already started noodling on that in Modus Labs, which we’ll release soon. 😉

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