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How TripAdvisor Grows Scale and Network Effects: Expertise in Gathering UGC

In anticipation of TripAdvisor’s annual meeting on June 28, it is appropriate to dig into how the company has delivered impressive financials on the back of network effects – the competitive advantage that is most closely allied to successful digital companies.

TripAdvisor  builds scale and creates network effects from User Generated Content (UGC) on the most atomic level — by contributor and user. In the big picture,  ComScore reports 65 million monthly uniques.  (Although, like all web businesses, there is a big difference between ComScore and internal logs;  according to Alison Croyle, Public Relations Manager from TripAdvisor, their internal Google Analytics measurement states 200 million unique visitors.)

The company highlights in its 2012 10K  that “ the primary asset that we use to attract traffic to our websites and convert these visitors into repeat users is the content created by users of our websites….”  Through an extensive interview with Adam Medros, TripAdvisor’s VP of Global Product  the keys why this content is so compelling have been revealed: Community, Platform Ubiquity, Context and Community Status...