Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Things I Found in My Google Reader

This morning I was stuck waiting at my car dealership. I was there for a oil change and a new battery. Of course, they found more things wrong with my car that obviously needed fixing immediately. That meant that I needed to cool my jets and wait.

Which meant that I spent some time browsing through my Google Reader. I don't usually spend too much time on Reader- mostly, I'm on Twitter or LinkedIn or Facebook. I set up Reader a while ago with all the RSS feeds I'd been collecting for the past four or five years, so there is a bunch of stuff in there.

Here is what caught my eye. First, and I can't believe how cool this is,

Panasonic has finally invented the technology to create the Power Loader from Aliens. Seriously, check out the video. Badass.

Today is the day Google invited 100,000 people to beta test its new application, Wave. It's apparently a neat IM, collaboration, publishing platform. All the geeks seem to be excited.

Scientists at Bell Labs have broken the 100 petabit per kilometer.second barrier. Who cares, you say? Well, it means that you can download every song on iTunes in 25 seconds. Yep. Also badass.

Andy Beal has a snaky blog post about the musical chairs act among top tech CTO's, "For Tech Execs It’s Not About the Money…This Just In: It’s About the Money."

Are you a newly rich tech CTO? In the market for a new pad? Leona Helmsley's mansion is starting to look affordable, "Dunnellen Hall Price Dropped Another $15 Million." Now a steal at $60,000,000.

Brian Solis rides to the rescue of the publishing industry and explains "The reports of newspapers’ death are (perhaps) greatly exaggerated". Why, you ask?

1) Newsprint may be black and white but the media business isn’t – While people tend to lean towards a twofold viewpoint (the world was this way, now it’s that way; people used to do things this way, now people do things another way), the truth is that the advent of new forms of media have yet to wholly kill previous forms. Television didn’t kill radio. The VCR didn’t kill the movies. Okay so maybe the Internet struck a near fatal blow to the music industry, but even in that case, things continue to evolve. In Chris’ words, “People want to get into a binary debate that we used to just all want (the newspaper) because we had no choice and now people want the raw feed to mix up their own news. From where I sit what’s really happening is that people have splintered in a lot of different directions. You still have people who value the gatekeeper/passive experience at one end and then you have (people on the other end) who just want the raw feed of all data washing over them, but mostly people exist on the span in between.”

2) Never underestimate the power of human nature - The people who get newspapers in print tend to be committed to getting the product in that form and whether it’s habit or not, they tend to stick with getting that paper delivered to their doorstep. O’Brien related that when the Seattle Post-Intelligencer ceased publishing its print edition and went web only, thanks to a joint operating agreement all P-I subscribers were switched automatically to the only remaining Seattle daily – The Seattle Times. People had the option to cancel, but something interesting happened. They didn’t. Not only did they retain their existing subscriptions, but when those began to run out, almost everyone renewed. O’Brien is not surprised by this and spoke of the digitally saturated people with whom he speaks every day – the venture capitalists and tech company executives whose lives are shackled to Blackberries and RSS feeds. “These are people who use technology for everything in their lives and they still get the paper in print. They still have it delivered to their doorstep.”

3) In today’s rapidly moving world, tactile yet passive experiences have merit - One of my favorite things about that morning paper is, quite simply, turning the pages. Humans are, after all, kinesthetic creatures, so the hands-on experience of a paper has some value. O’Brien agrees with that, and thinks that there’s something even more simple. Sometimes people just want a “psychologically different experience … a purely passive experience.” He went on to explain that oftentimes people don’t want “something with buttons or to click around. Even with a Kindle, there are buttons to push and that’s not appealing to them. They just want something that’s there. Something they don’t have to think about.” There are some who disagree with that perspective, but I’m not one of them.

Now, we turn our attention to two of my favorite topics, history and food.

Archeologists working in Rome have discovered the Roman Emperor Nero had a rotating dinning room in his modestly named "Golden Palace." This new fact about our culinary heritage prompted the food writer at the Guardian newspaper to go on a ballistic (but very properly British) rant on the eternal need for gimmicks in restaurants.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Listen to my Webinar- an Overview of B2B Social Media Business Applications

Last week, I had the great opportunity of serving as a speaker for a webinar hosted by the Software and Information Industry Association (SIIA). There were three excellent presentations and a fascinating Q&A session. The speakers were:

Jeff Majka, Director of Marketing and Business Development, Strategic Communications Group
Gail Nelson, SVP, Marketing, BurrellesLuce
Angela Lauria, CMO, AppAssure

...and the session was moderated by
Karen Leavitt, CEO, Marketing Fusion.

Download the PDF of the 36 slides here and listen to the audio here (about 90 minutes).

What do you think? Please leave a comment or drop me a line!!

As I told you here, this was the first webinar in a four part series. The next three webinars will be held as follows (mark your calendars and click on the links to register):

Enterprise Sales Support - Using Social Medial to Support the Enterprise B2B Sales Cycle
Price for SIIA Members: Free, Non SIIA Members: $35
Monday, October 5th - 1:30pm - 2:30 pm EDT

With new service-based models and the rise of "freemium", the sales cycle is getting complicated -- and every advantage counts. Social media has the potential to connect these new models to the customers that want them, but how do you implement it? Where do you start? Hear how social media can transform the way you approach lead generation and sales cycle support.

Adam Mertz, Product Marketing Manager, Jive Software
Jay Hallberg, Co-founder & VP of Marketing, Spiceworks

Using Social Media to Target the C-Suite and Close Deals
Price for SIIA Members: Free, Non SIIA Members: $89
Monday, November 2 - 1:30pm - 2:30 pm EDT

Many of your customers are using social media to communicate with THEIR customers. How can you tap into their social media programs? The first step to closing the deal is to conduct a social media audit of your principal prospects. How can this be completed efficiently and comprehensively for a large number of prospects? How can you facilitate social media for deal capture?

Jim Fowler, CEO, Jigsaw

Social Media for Brand Awareness, Thought Leadership and Other Traditional PR Activities
Price for SIIA Members: Free, Non SIIA Members: $89
Monday, December 7th - 1:30pm - 2:30 pm EDT

Social media should be an integral part of your PR strategy, not just your sales function. To run a successful campaign Marketing, Sales and PR need to be integrated using today's popular social media tools. How can you effectively integrate your social media strategy across the enterprise?

Robert Carroll, VP Marketing, Clickability

Richard Dym, CMO, OpSource, Inc.