I recently visited Baidu’s headquarters in Beijing. It was an interesting visit and I learned a lot. Here are my three big takeaways.
Baidu, China’s leading search engine, is a “learning platform” that becomes smarter with increased user activity. Founded by Robin Li in 2000, it was designed to cater to search users, webpages, and advertisers. Baidu, like other learning platforms, can serve both human and digital agents, enhancing their service based on the overall and individual user activity.
In Part 1 and Part 2, I laid out Baidu’s core search engine and some of the complexities that have evolved in search over time. I have three strategy questions for Baidu going forward: How competitive will a stand-alone search engine be against China’s larger digital giants over time? Can Baidu create a second large […]
In this podcast, Jeffrey Towson discusses Baidu’s key strategic questions, including its best growth opportunity, whether it needed to go into content, and how it can compete in the attention market. He argues that Baidu’s best growth opportunity is in the cloud, but that it needs to be careful not to overextend itself. He also believes that Baidu needs to focus on its core search business and not get distracted by other ventures.
In Part 1, I laid out some basic theory for Baidu and search engines. I think it was a pretty solid picture for Baidu circa 2010. But strange things have been happening since then. Baidu has moved into entertainment, services (for a while), content creation and self-driving cars. I’m not sure if these were strategic […]
In this podcast, Jeffrey Towson discusses whether Baidu can become the new AT&T in China. He considers factors such as Baidu’s strengths in search and artificial intelligence, as well as the challenges it faces from rivals like Alibaba and Tencent. For example, Baidu has a strong foothold in the Chinese search market, but it faces competition from Alibaba in the e-commerce market and Tencent in the social media market.