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For those who may've missed it, a new top level domain (TLD) was released yesterday called ".co". Surprisingly Inc.com, a site and magazine I respect, went with a blog post advising readers to "run, don't walk" to buy your .co domain today. Don't fall for it, this is yet another domain registrar ploy and is a waste of your business's money. Here's why...

For anyone following this meme on Twitter, Fast Company recently launched a site called “Influence Project”, where they’re essentially pitting online “influencers” against one another to vote for their influencer ranking. The Project is being pushed left and right on Twitter and Facebook and I’m sure elsewhere, but at this point I’ve tuned out from it, not because I don’t want to vote for my friends but because it’s like watching cattle being lined up onto a conveyor belt only to be lead to slaughter.

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="240" caption="What would you find if you removed the curtain?"]Curtain[/caption] A lot of discussions take place day in and day out over the use of social media in the workplace. "Is it productive?", "Why do we need it?", "Where's the return?" and "Should we allow it?" have been uttered more times in board rooms and meetings than any of the bullshit bingo we all snicker at when folks who don't understand what they're talking about use to fill space. There are some great resources online to see what the big companies are doing regarding social media, but given the prevalence of sites like Facebook and Twitter at some point it becomes an issue of personal use versus company use, to which I can only say one thing...

Yesterday I posted a piece on matchmaking between bloggers and brands that seemed to go over pretty well. Today's focus is going to shift to the relationship between a brand and their agency. In particular, there seem to be a few tried and true ways of weeding out those who'll constantly disappoint or, at the very least, annoy the hell out of you.

I've been working online with communities for the past 6 and a half years, a time when message boards and Yahoo Groups (remember those?) were as social as it got. This was an era where blogs were the Wild Wild West and most folks weren't too keen on the idea of companies talking to them. You had to be extremely selective as to which blogs might want to engage with your clients and which you'd want to align your client's brand(s) with. Clearly the blogosphere has evolved since 2004 but while some things have changed, some have stayed exactly the same. Here are five tips for PR and ad n00bs and vets alike when selecting which blogs to work with.

Those who may be familiar with Seth Godin know that he's been a pretty good predictor of what's coming in business and marketing. For me it started with his book Permission Marketing where, by his definition, he states that  "Permission marketing is the privilege (not the right) of delivering anticipated, personal and relevant messages to people who actually want to get them." Think about that concept - people who actually want to get them. Not "roadblocks", not "takeovers", but actual engagement by choice. Such a novel concept, except most marketers disregard this basic premise: people don't like ads. Seth's genius continued in his book "Small Is The New Big", a concept that's undoubtedly unfolded in truth through micropayments, micromessaging and microplatforms. Yes, Seth's written a few stinkers along the way, but a man has to eat and Seth has a large home in Westchester to maintain. That being said, I was reading a sister agency's report on digital ad spending in 2009 and was completely blown away by what I saw.