Some time ago, when I first heard of Dogster, a social networking site for dogs, I probably had the same reaction that everyone else had. What a lame, derivative, "Let's-register-the-domain-name-and-then-build-a-business-around-it" idea. But, believe it or not, the site is doing well:
Now Dogster has raised a round of $1 million from a group of accomplished “angel” investors, to help it step on the gas.
In talking with founder and chief executive Ted Rheingold, we began to discover the real magic behind the site: It is all about the dogs, but then it isn’t really. Sure, dog owners are flocking to the site so that they can post pictures of their dogs, and check out the profiles of other dogs of the same breed, or of other owners in their neighborhood.
It only reinforces my conviction that few people have any idea of what will work and what won't. There's a lot of spaghetti throwing in business, just to see what noodles stick.