It’s beginning to feel a lot like the 1990s. And that’s not because the POTUS is a democrat.
No. I’ve been harkening back to my reporting days of last decade because I’ve been talking to a lot of firms lately about their Internet strategy; the latest being Element Partners.
In the ’90s, most firms talked to me about what would be called a Web 1.0 strategy. They just wanted to get their URLs secured and their websites up and running with all the bells and whistles.
Now, firms are into developing their Web 2.0 approach and are stepping into social networking. A couple of months ago, I wrote about how Highway 12 Ventures in Boise, Idaho, launched a blog on its website. And I have it in my notes to talk to a half-dozen firms about their approach to Twitter, including Maveron, which told me it wanted to wait to discuss things because it was just getting started on Twitter and was still learning all the possibilities.
The latest Web 2.0 talk came recently when I spoke with David Lincoln, managing partner of Radnor, Pa.-based Element. The firm, which focuses on cleantech deals, has reduced its early stage activity and closed its second fund in March with $486 million in commitments to focus on late stage deals. The firm, formerly known as DFJ Element, remains affiliated with the Draper Fisher Jurvetson network. Element was in the news earlier this month for participating in the funding of Turbine Air Systems Inc.
But before that, the firm released a redesign of its website as part of its new branding efforts. Lincoln says the improvements include fixing all the links, updating the overall look with better photos and improving the search engine optimization to increase their presence online. The original site went up in 2005.
However, don’t expect Lincoln or his co-investors to opine on a blog. Though there have been some discussions, Lincoln doesn’t foresee it happening.
“Not a great use of our time,” he says. “I can see the advantage of doing it and getting picked up more by Web searches. But a number of cleantech VCs are already blogging, and they do a good job at it.”