The problem with big round numbers

July 29, 2010 by Dave Haynes

I was just reading a press release about a media network’s plans to increase its footprint by 1,000 locations, starting with 500 by the end of Q3.

That may be entirely true, but as someone who has talked to hundreds of early stage network operators over the years, my BS Filter starts shaking and spitting out smoke and WD-40 when people start using big round numbers like that. Software biz dev guys hear endless variations on the “we’re going to do 1,000 sites” thing and struggle not to roll their eyes right in front of the client.

Once … just once … I had an early stage company’s VP Ops detail how they planned to do something like 138 venues in year one. It was the one time I got a number that clearly wasn’t just pulled out of thin air. That one I believed.

So DOOH execs, when you issue releases with big, round rollout numbers like 1,000, just be aware that most of your industry brethren aren’t buying it.

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