Tuesday, July 7, 2009

The next Heidi Slimane?

...or maybe I just have a crush on him.

This boy was caught on cam by fashion blogger Diane Pernet and then posted and favorited on Fader's blog. He may seem apropos of nothing when it comes to marketing, but to me his well adjusted, self confident demeanor suggests a lot about what it means to be edgy and young today. Are kids now comfortable with being less mainstream?

I mean I was a freaky little girl growing up in the 80's and 90's. Lots of time alone, wearing black, listening to The Smiths. But I wasn't all confident about being weird like this kid is. His blond 'do and wedge booties are DOs indeed. Maybe this means we can stop talking down to tweens and teens so much in ads and entertainment.

Watch and enjoy. *Sigh*

Friday, May 22, 2009

Will real time search turn marketing into customer service?

With the popularity of Twitter's real time search, and some Very Large companies like @Comcastcares, @Jetblue, @Wholefoods and @Ford being very vocal about the importance of maintaining a two-way dialogue with their consumers, it follows that the next stage of marketing may feature company reps reaching out via Twitter Search to real consumers and offering product deals, offers, or advice. 

This has already happened in some instances, but it hasn't happened on a grand scale...yet. Marketing as customer service seems the obvious next step in online marketing to me. But I haven't really heard many tech pundits kicking it around in convo or posts much. There was this post by my fave search expert, John Battelle, that sticks out in my mind. It was posted last year. 

The main idea of the post is that Google may feel to us like it's immediate, but it's really an archival system. Battelle writes, "Google represents a remarkable achievement: the ability to query the static web." What Google hasn't done yet is show us what query searches in real time. 

But guess who has done that? Twitter. Ahhhh...Twitter. The darling of the community sites just can't do anything wrong it seems. But it may have some competition lurking in Sunnyvale.

In a more recent post by Battelle, the omnipresence of real time search appears inevitable when Battelle quotes Google co-founder Larry Page as admitting that "People really want to do stuff in real time and they [Twitter] have done a great job about it...we will do a good job of things now that we have these examples."

So have we reached the moment when your search coughs up what people are saying about your query that very second? And if so, what does that mean to marketing? 

This is what's really interesting to me. And you better believe corporations and CMOs everywhere are similarly salivating over the idea of direct, one-to-one sales and marketing via real time queries. I mean, it's the ultimate opt-in, right? The consumer is actually requesting information and is probably near the end of the buying cycle. Plus, the corporation rep can snag that lead and convert it into a sale, immediately.

I can even visualize what the day-to-day job would require: some kind of marketing/customer service/account person hybrid, sitting in front of a multi-panel listening platform, where they monitor certain key word mentions online and entice influencers with micro blog outreach moments. Do you see it too? What do you see?

Monday, May 18, 2009

My pal smarts off on Ideas Project

A quick shout out to my friend Roland Smart, who is featured today on the intriguing video-based tech and influencers blog site, Ideas Project. True to its name, Ideas Project features thought leaders giving an encapsulated (read: BRIEF!) description of a Big Idea. I've posted one video of Roland above, in which he describes how Marketing 2.0 is all about bi-directional conversations with community, and how companies grow out of a community need. For more Roland, read the full posting.

Check it out. He makes a killer point in no time. What can I say, his last name ain't Smart for nothin'.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Radian6 SM monitoring and Dell's Social Media Strategy

I always fancied myself kind of a tough chick, but now that I moved from the centrally located Tendernob (Where the Loin meets Nob Hill) to the Outer Mission I'm realizing how much I've been relying on taxi cabs and how very little I've been utilizing my bike/public transit. 

I'm so freaked out about figuring HOW to get somewhere that I've basically bordering on being an agoraphobe at this point. I mean, I like to have certain things easily accessible to me--I need a grocery that is a step above a bodega, a pharmacy, a gym and maybe one decent thai take-out place. 

Right now, I have to bike a mile and a half to get outside of the residential area. This is definitely going to put a cramp in how late I go out and how much alcohol I imbibe. Navigating a bike while tipsy = BAD IDEA JEANS.

Anyway, in between learning the in's and out's of MUNI, BART and biking the crazy SF terrain, I've also been drawn to PowerShift, the blog at the Radian6 website. If you don't know much about Radian6, then take a look at what they're up to. They provide amazing social media monitoring and analysis platforms to corporations and businesses. You may be familiar with Dell's smart use of social media. Well, Dell is one of Radian6's biggest clients. If you aren't familiar with Ideastorm or other Dell SM tactics, check out this post's video, above.

Because I see Radian6 as a kind of Great Oz behind the SM curtain, I decided to contact Radian6 via @AmberCadabra, the uber on-top-of-it Director of Community for R6. I asked her for a demo of their product, and she got me in touch with one of their account managers (@CoryHartlen) who then walked me through a real time demo of the tricked-out platform. The Radian6 product can track search terms and influencers via a social media profile river, trending charts, and clouds. To me, it felt a little like what being omnipotent must feel like. If you're repping a brand that needs to become a part of the conversation, I highly recommend poking around the R6 site.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Where have I been all your life?!

I've been running around town lately doing Biz Dev for flavorpill, and therefore am neglecting you poor sweet readers. I'm sure you're all in a deep state of confusion about this and may have neglect issues creeping in. So let me just say hello to all. Hope the economy isn't breaking you, as it is downsizing me tremendously.  

Maybe that's the point. Maybe as Americans it's time to actually PAY ATTENTION to what and how you're spending and get a little bit more realistic about budgets and the value of a dollar. 

Personally, I'm looking at this time period (for about 3 months now, and prob for about another 7) as an opportunity for self improvement. If you have downtime too, think about what skills you want to learn and maybe even pick up a hobby. 

You could turn the economy's crap-tastic state into a personal development period. Maybe even start right now. A friend forward me the link to birdhive.net, a twitter like site just for posting and sharing creative projects. Got something to share? Put yourself out there. You never know what cool connection you may make just by posting a link.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Web 2.0 expo at the Moscone West

I went to the Web 2.0 expo today with a friend of mine. It kicked off on Wednesday the 31st, and will continue through tomorrow, April 2nd. The co-sponsors are O'Reilly Media and Techweb. I wasn't really sure what to expect from the conference, but it was in my hood and I really wanted to hear a few of the Keynote Speakers. So I decided to stop into today to hear Douglas Rushkoff speak on "How the Web Ate the Economy, and Why This is Good for Everyone" and listen in on a sponsored session on Social Media given by a Senior Marketer at Vignette, an integrated web content management provider. 

Both presos were fairly edifying, although Rushkoff only talked for 20 minutes or so, which sucked since I dragged my sleepy arse out of bed and to Moscone West at the crack of dawn this morning SOLELY because he was speaking so early. And yet I do worship his brain and will probably go and buy Life, Inc. as soon as possible. Yes, I'm a loyalist when it comes to brainiacs.

The Social Media preso from the Vignette peeps was a decent high level overview of what's happening in Social Media, and how to create a kind of sustainable, consistent brand presence by syndicating original content and engaging in the conversations around the content and brand. Yes, we've all heard this before. But no, this didn't annoy me--mainly because with the media industry changing on a daily basis these days, it's comforting to feel that there's at least a one recent media development that may actually endure for a substantial length of time.

The picture accompanying this post was taken in the the Expo Booth area during the Booth Crawl Happy Hour. Exhibitors pulled out crates of stouts and ales while they passed out their company literature and talked shop. The most popular booths at the expo seemed to be representing either enterprise-class social media community experience providers or cloud and utility computing services. I was pretty stoked to FINALLY have a clear understanding of what cloud computing is, and the value it brings to corporations.

A happy ending for me, and a day well spent. 

Monday, March 23, 2009

Blellow: A new microblog for freelancers and creatives

A new site called Blellow just launched at SXSW, and got many people digging on its Twitter-like micro networking functionality. I am one of the peeps digging. Blellows members answer the question "What are you working on?" and in doing so they organically engage in potential creative collaborations with groups or other members. Check out this video below for a good overview: