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My latest column is up over at Marketing Magazine’s site. I said a couple days ago I was thinking a lot about intent this week, call it a cosmic quest for something deeper than the window dressing. If I wasn’t in advertising, that would actually be a good thing.
There’s a lot of talk lately about brands and the voices they speak with. Be it through products or services, conversation is the new currency through which everyone wants to be measured. If what we’ve been saying for a while now is true, and our brands are to be imbued with human traits and personalities in order to inform the way they speak to their audience, then we need to look at intent…
The rest of the piece is over at Marketing Magazine.
This is a bit of an admin post (1, 2, 3 – “Boooooooring!!!”). Marketing Magazine have added RSS feeds to their site for particular bloggers (including me). So, if you’d like to subscribe to my posts on Marketing Magazine you can now do so.
Additionally if you don’t subscribe to this site currently but would like to, please go right ahead! It is free, easy and guaranteed to do many ill-defined and vague things.
Long-time listeners-first time callers would be aware I was included in a top 50 list of marketing blogs in Australia recently, put together by Adspace-Pioneers and Marketing Magazine (#17, thanks very much). Eschewing “It’s an honour just to be nominated” dribble, it was a great chance to check out some of the other writers and marketers that exist in this space. There’s a tremendous amount of value out there and it’s well worth everyone’s time to take a look at the other sites comprising the list.
One key aspect which had been over-looked on a lot of these sites though was the choice of technology employed. There are three main blog platforms – WordPress (which is what this site is), TypePad and Blogger, all of which have their own pros and cons, but perform the same base functions.
Contrast this with Vox, a site I hadn’t heard of before until I visited Lexy Klain’s blog (#29 on the list). Lexy does a good job of providing thought-provoking content, I actually went quite far back into her archives to get a sense of her thought process. Satisfied, I went to comment on a post, and to congratulate her on making the list, and that is when the fun stopped.
Vox requires you to register if you wish to comment, something I abhor. Having spent yesterday afternoon at the Melbourne PubCamp event being bored to tears by folk who do not yet understand for some God-forsaken reason that open beats closed, I was surprised to see a blog site pursuing this tack.
By choosing this platform, Lexy opts out of a raft of conversation provided by comments. Fred Wilson often says the comments on his site far outweigh the value created in his blog posts. This is a participatory medium, and we need to make the barriers to entry for everyone as low as possible.
Lex, five stars for the wealth of thought you’re providing, but I can get it elsewhere. And if I can’t interact or am put off by the barriers placed in front of me, I won’t return. Those who haven’t read it should brush up on Forrester’s POST methodology for more on this.
Dear Mr. Mechanic,
You did a great job on my car, fixed the glove box brilliantly. You sent a follow up letter which was brief and to the point, you did everything right. Except you put a sticker on my back window without asking me and in a spot I was unlikely to see until the next time I put my guitars in my car.
Which happened a couple days ago.
Permission marketing is just that, it requires permission. Otherwise you’re just forcing yourself on people, and that doesn’t work anymore. Earn people’s trust, respect their time AND their dollar. Don’t try to put words in their mouths, because that only works as long as you’re in the room, and you don’t have time to be there in the room with everyone of your customers (even if you did, you’d just breed resentment, not loyalty).
The rest of this post is available at Marketing Magazine.
Ok I made that up. This blog though was actually ranked #17 in a top 50 list of Australian marketing blogs.
Compiled by Julian Cole of Adspace Pioneers fame, he has posted the list on his blog as well as having it featured in the August edition of Marketing Magazine (which I also contribute to). Thanks to Julian for the hat tip, I’ll do my best to live up to it.
|2||Servant of Chaos||9||5||8||6||6||5||39|
|3||Duncans Tv Adland||6||5||7||6||8||5||37|
|5||Better Communication Results||8||3||6||5||6||6||34|
|7||Small Business Branding||7||3||0||8||7||8||33|
|14||Business of Marketing & Branding||6||5||6||4||4||1||26|
|16||Australian SEO Blog||4||4||5||4||6||1||24|
|17||Wide Open Spaces||8||5||4||3||3||1||24|
|21||Campaign Brief Blog||6||4||0||3||5||3||21|
|28||Mark Neely’s Blog – 3rd Horizon||7||3||2||2||3||0||17|
|30||Peter Sheahan Live||6||4||0||1||4||2||17|
|31||In my atmosphere||6||4||0||3||2||1||16|
|34||Pigs Don’t Fly||6||4||1||1||2||0||14|
|36||Australian Small Business||6||3||0||0||4||0||13|
|37||The Jason Recliner||4||4||1||2||1||1||13|
|42||Zero Budget Marketing Ideas||6||3||1||1||1||0||12|
|46||Arrow Internet SEO||7||2||0||0||1||1||11|
|47||The Sticky Report||7||0||1||2||0||0||10|
|48||Naked Communications-The Flasher||8||0||0||1||0||1||10|
|50||Send up a larger room||7||0||0||1||0||0||8|
Brainstorming ideas for a clients impending product launch, a gun account manager (as in she’s great, she doesn’t manage a client who manufactures guns) and I came up with something that was largely experiential, nailed the target market, and delivered on the promise of the brand all in one. Good idea we said. Great idea we said.
It’s not digital we said – but does it have to be?
When I was thinking about the first column to write for Marketing Magazine, I kept coming back to this notion of what digital wasn’t as opposed to what it was. I canvassed a few opinions and was bemused by Iain Tait’s cryptic reply; “Digital is not a thing anymore.”
Some time after that, indeed quite recently, I suddenly realised what he meant. It reminded me of something Dr. Michael Hewitt-Gleeson had said to me a few months earlier: “The second you try to think outside the box, you’re disregarding a lot of really good, valid stuff.”
A good idea is a good idea, and as long as it delivers for your audience, and it doesn’t have to be anything else.
One of the joys of now being a columnist is having the editor of the magazine call up and berate you for over-due pieces. Picture any actor who has played a journalist (I’m thinking Clooney personally) called by his very attractive but somewhat neurotic editor who has told he has until the end of the day to get his story in or he is fired. Note how cool he plays it, how he has arranged to discuss his column over dinner with her (and probably breakfast too). Got that image in your head?
Right. My life is nothing like that.
Still, I was called today because my latest piece was over-due. I said I had nothing to say, she said not to worry, that I could write about butter and it would be interesting.
So that’s what I did. Spurred on by the recent hoopla surrounding their blocking Google’s Friend Connect, I explain why butter is a crock, why Facebook is butter, and why, for me, it starts to spell the end of this media darling.
…trying to control what people do with (their own information) is the digital equivalent of telling rain which way to fall in a thunderstorm. Facebook eschewed a bunch of good stuff to get to where it is, using ingredients that were good for a whole lot of other, better, products and services. Now they’re desperately trying to maintain hold on user data, under the daft assumption it was somehow theirs to play with in the first place.
It’s already been suggested I’m wrong on this, I’m not so sure…
Some people have a love-hate relationship with their own fallibility. Not me. I revel in it. I was talking earlier today about widening the range of ideas you let in to your head so as to stimulate your own thinking from a different perspective.
I was thinking about this a bit more today after posting over at the Marketing Magazine forums on the subject of being wrong in a digital space. We should be embracing the rapid pace at which everything is changing; every error, every out and out mistake is a lesson learned and a rule formed in a space where so few exist.
I wrote at the beginning of the year I was spending more time thinking about what was least wrong as opposed to most right. Semantics sure, but the point is we don’t know right now, and nor should we. If everyone could for just one day check their egos at the door and revel in the fact we’re still figuring this out, we’d get a lot more done.
I’m involved in a discussion over on the Marketing Mag forums. The case centers around an Australian band called The Presets and them involving themselves in a promotion in BMW where a track of theirs gets remixed. The association of brands is obscure at best, but what I don’t get is The Presets not owning up to it in the first place. In a recent interview on Triple J (Australia’s larges independent radio station), there was no mention of the remix, or of BMW. This says to me The Presets are embarrassed and Triple J, having supported them from day dot even more so.
In a futile effort to display some semblance of independence, both parties have succeeded in completely dodging an issue. If a band/person/organisation/brand/product/whatever is going to make a move like this, they at least need to have the guts to own it. Triple J love their indie darlings so aren’t going to call them on it (that’s called selling out, but apparently only when a big corporation is involved), and The Presets – who could justify it as easy as “It paid for our next European tour” – just look shady.
Bad moves all around. This post has more. In particular:
You need to stand for what you stand for. Every. Second. Of. The. Day.