Monday, September 27, 2010
Cookstr a Vertical CookWorld?
Why not have a dedicated portal just for cooking where you link cooks, recipes, restaurants reviewers and of course consumers? It makes a lot of sense and is a clear vertical which touches all.
We looked at Cookstr.com which was foundered and is headed by Will Schwalbe who was previously at Hyperion Books and before that William Morrow. He is supported by Katie Workman, who was previously Associate Publisher of Workman Publishing. The site is clean and gives the perfect meeting place to discover cooks, cookbook authors, recipes, restaurants and has profiles of the cooks, a foodie blog. The user can print off a recipe send it to a friend and will soon offer MyCookstr, where they can save recipes, make notes, and shopping lists.
At first it shows the potential of the vertical and the wealth of content available. You can buy a cookbook, but the reader is referred to a cascade of US stores to complete the purchase, which somehow breaks the connection just formed and may be fine for some but why do you want to to do it and give them a beauty contest. There doesn’t appear to be any video clips, GPS linking to nearest restaurant or links as to where you can source produce, but this is only a beta site! You can buy kitchen gifts and advertising is coming. It clearly is one step better than the cook magazine and breaks the spine of the old cookbook.
We presume the author/cook always owns the recipe irrespective of any compilation or cookbook which gives us an interesting issue when the chapter/recipe/article can be traded outside of the book.
The question we had was how you make money on the individual recipes which after all is what everyone will want especially if you can print it off for free. We also see a design that is still basically publisher centric and not consumer centric in that it has joined the cook recipe and consumer dots but missed the restaurant recipe, supplies and consumer ones. We liked it as a site and it obviously can port to a mobile app is linked to twitter and Face Book and it shows want can be done with some slick design.