Monday, February 28, 2011

Mobile Monday - Travel Notes - Mobile - LBS still 1.0

On Saturday I went to Brooklyn, NY for an art show opening that I knew some of the artists and their group of friends. During my visit I used a number of Apps on my Droid2. Here is the high and the low.

 Usual Suspects Opening Night - WIlliamsburg, Brooklyn

Google Maps - with the GPS function enabled it shows your position on the map. If you entered an address it brings you there. 

Google GPS - the voice search feature is great. It also has at least an 80% success rate.

Droid2 - I don't take my Digital Camera out any longer and use my Droid2. Eliminated 1  device to take out!

Yelp! - allows me with GPS enabled to pull up bars and eateries nearby, often many with pictures. Also allows me to check in similar to FourSquare and Gowalla. I can even write a review while at the place and upload photos.

NYC Mate- On the Subway, which I meant to get a photo of they signs say the MTA as a strategic decision did not create any Apps for Trains, Bus, or Ferry Service. Instead they allowed private developers to create Apps incorporating the MTA info. So I use this simple App that has the subway lines and stops.

Twitter - Twitter for Android and Hootsuite make keeping in touch on Twitter very easily as well as the ability to run a clients Twitter while out of the Office.

The Bad:

Yelp! - I can pull up restaurants but not by cuisine on their App and it loads just 10 places per page. In NYC you easily would have 100 in close range in some areas. Won't allow me to complete my review until I am at home logged into Yelp! on my laptop.

LBS - FourSquare and Gowalla - bad news for your form of LBS. Yes I like telling SOME friends where I am, and sometimes the Twitter. Your services do not work in buildings. I was at the Spike Hill Tavern in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and I wasn't getting up and walking outside to check in. I also aside from one night at Chili's in October I have never seen any deals from the places I check into being offered.

Artwork by Keely

LBS Part 2- Shopkick - I have played with this App before. They do have some national my chain discounts. I never set up the settings and when I was walking from Penn Station to Herald Square because they moved the E train to the F train line. On my walk where seriously with 100 yards could easily have 100-200 Stores. My phone started buzzing like crazy. I was in a rush and wasn't in town to shop. I finally figured out at least one store was buzzing a deal and I decided I did not like that at all. I want to be there to shop and pull up the App and look for deals. I do not want Deal Alerts to my phone that buzz, or beep, or shock, or play a song.

Social -
I uninstalled my Droid Facebook App not that long ago. It works great but when I read Facebook wanted to sell phone numbers and contact info to Brands I decided I don't need contact by any push advertising from Brands that buy my info from Facebook. So went 24 hours without Facebook and I did not miss it.

Twitter - Twitter for Droid and Hootsuite - I like Hootsuite because it is better for managing my own account, and a client's. I like uploading photos when I travel to twitter. Hootsuite works better and faster, BUT the photo host doesn't show how many views, while TwitPic does. I like Twitter's new name completion and auto-shortening of links feature since the upgrade. I do not like that they don't have a 'Send' box for viewing. Hootsuite has this but it doesn't work most of the time. I really wish one App did all.

Hootsuite - it is a small box to see which account a Tweet Stream will launch into. So my joke photo of the Playgirl Van which was meant as an inside joke with @DarrylOhrt and @KDel713 about the next Humongo Nation tour vehicle via @skypulsemedia , it actually was sent into @ChunknChip 's Twitter Stream. DOH!

News Reading - I have several Apps I use to read news. Other times I like to pull off Twitter. Often if the Web Browser was asked to open the resulting content was not formatted for mobile sadly.

The Ugly:

Admob Banner Ads - I know I highlighted last week a success story. But seriously all I normally see are ads to find singles in my area and how to extend my battery life.

Williamsburg, Brooklyn

Motorola Droid2 Battery Life - I had to bring 3 charged batteries and my damn charger. Luckily Amtrak and the Art Opening they had a plug for me. Yes 3 batteries was not enough to last from 12pm Saturday to 11am Sunday.

Twitter for Android/Verizon - really very slow to up load 1mb photos. In fact sometimes it is excruciatingly painful.

Subways - No connectivity under ground. No 3G. No Wi-Fi. No GPS. No nothing!

 This Advertising Works!

In wrap up, while my phone was very invaluable in many ways, there were plenty of frustrations where things didn't work perfectly, were too slow, or froze up the phone! To me it feels like we are just out of the gate and the race is just starting for mobile technologies of a wide variety.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Fun Friday - Strongbad and Joe Cartoon

I found Joe Cartoon and Strongbad a few years back via ITunes. They were available as free podcast subscriptions. They have to be the funniest video shorts ever. Though warning there is foul language and sometimes brutal bloody happenings to gerbils and flies. Joe Cartoon had his own website then moved to Atom Films and now not sure but a lot reside on this You Tube Channel: 

Strongbad has his own site with a very hilarious cast of characters. By far the Cheat which I think is his pet is the funniest. Strongbad is a young kid who dresses like a Mexican 1950's Wrestler and he likes to take Email Questions. As technology has improved Strongbad has upgraded his computer from one with a floppy drive to a more modern one. Also at the end of each cartoon if you move your mouse around the screen there are secret places to click to watch small clips.

Joe Cartoon has this mid-western family called the Greenfields who are just like your Grandparents. Except they are pot farmers.

Strongbad tends to get quite rageful when his ISP is slow. In this episode Homestar Runner is manning the Internets.

One thing hilarious about Joe Cartoon is his Gerbil Fetish:

Homestar Runner who is Strongbad's sidekick broke up with his girlfriend Marzipan and goes on a video dating service....while getting drunk.....

I suggest, no. I command you to book market the two sites and when your boss or a client or just life in general is pissing you off. Go watch an episode of three.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Social Media Still Has No Scale for Big Business

I blogged about this in October LINK and related this to why Social Media is not in the C Suite for big brands either LINK

This hasn't changed. I see improvements on Facebook Pages in terms of how they are organized and used for customer service or to engage with customers. I see more use of Twitter by Brands. But the reach is small compared to what Brand Websites, Store Fronts, Customer Service Phone Banks can offer. I have no problem helping a small slice of customers this way, especially if it saves money. Toll Free phone lines cost money. But does paying someone to monitor Facebook or Twitter cost more than someone answering phones? My guess is maybe today. Maybe not tomorrow. It is possible to one day outsource Social Media Customer Service to a low labor cost English speaking country with proper training.

Recently Fortune Magazine did a really nice covert test to see if they could get help via Twitter, and compared the results to Phone and Website. Interestingly enough the Phone worked best for Zappos. Here is the study, all tests were with big businesses asking for help with common tasks for customer service

I think the big key is sometimes we need people and we need timely response. If we get someone on the phone it is immediate and timely. Even if we are on hold 20 mins. If something can be automated via a Website to where we have control that works best in my opinion all around. But not all customer service needs can be solved that way. I just can't imagine helping 20,000 people a day on a Facebook Page or via Twitter, though maybe one day Technology will get creative and allow those or similar networks to be a Portal vs the host location, and then channel the persons needs electronically via proprietary networks to the right person.

I think Banksy foresaw the death of telephone customer service just a bit prematurely!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Social Tuesday - You Never Had Control of Your Message

I had a delightful dinner last night with Kristien Del Ferraro (@KDel713) of Humongo Agency and her husband Daniel (@DannyDGoatee) in Windham Mountain, NY. Kristien and I were discussing Brand's being nervous about getting involved in Social Media and how they fear losing control of the discussions or their message.

Brands you have never had control of your message!

Do you really think that by not having a Facebook Page, Twitter Account or Blog, that customers aren't talking about you? Did this work with BP? Or Tiger Woods? That we just accept your Press Releases or Advertising at Face Value? The fact is we are all talking about you all the time whether you are there or not. So why not participate. Why not engage? Why not set proper expectations? 

I am writing this post because of he NY Knicks. They have been in talks to get Carmelo Anthony from the Denver Nuggets all season. Doing a Google Search for the NY Knicks Blogs I find these blogs. All of which the Knicks have ZERO control over the content.

When I go to their Facebook Fan page unless I change the filter to show fan posts all I see is the posts from the NY Knicks. There are many reasons for this. One is not to clutter and cloud out what they post. I get that.But they don't have a place for Knicks fans to discuss the team.

But people are CLEVER! Yes people are suckers. But they are also CLEVER! The Knicks wanted to show case their young rookie Landry Fields who has been kicking ass. This is his moment in the spotlight. Yet his interview got hijacked by the fans wanting to discuss the Carmelo Anthony situation!

If the Kicks were smart they would customize their Facebook page or steer Fans to somewhere to have this discussion. The only reason they chose this Facebook post for this discussion is because they didn't see a place on the Fan Page to do so. The Knicks forget that Social Media has the word Social in it. That if Fans wanted push advertising/promotions they would sign up for their email Newsletter!

I highly recommend participation real time. If your customers hate your Brand you won't last long in business. You can stop rumors in their tracks. You can help guide and steer expectations. You can even turn around disgruntled customers into Brand Ambassadors with the right forms of engagement. But if you think that sitting on the sidelines with your head in the ground like an Ostrich means people will not talk? Preposterous! 

Addendum 2-25: Many Knicks fans have questioned whether the price paid for Carmelo Anthony was too high. The Knicks who own MSG Network had their highest one game ratings since 1995. LINK

Monday, February 21, 2011

Mobile Monday - Corning® Gorilla® Glass Gets Mobile

On Saturday I was using one of my Droid2 Apps. I have mentioned I am pretty sure that most Ad Mob Banner ads in Apps are a drag. They are never relevant and are pretty much space hogs that annoy. But on Saturday I see one that was for a real company (vs 'Click to learn how to extend your battery life' banner ads). And I found them interesting. It was for Corning® Gorilla® Glass.

Corning has a very interesting history. They were the inventors of Pyrex which is the Laboratory Glass we all used in Science class for beakers and test tubes etc. Then in the 90's they got into fiber optics who along with JD Uniphase had spectacular stock rises then crashes from the boom. Then silence. They had thought about being just a fiber optics company. I am glad they did not.

Now they make Gorilla® Glass. What is Gorilla® Glass you might ask? It's the glass on my Droid2. I have been wondering why since August it has zero scratches. Why I drop it and nothing happens (jinx). But I had no idea until I clicked the Ad!

I was ready for my browser to pop up with an unformatted for mobile website. Instead up popped a very slick mobile micro-site. It had a few tabs with About and Products and one for Videos. They chose two videos which were cute. And at least showcased how versatile the Gorilla® Glass is.

While one might debate whether this is a consumer product vs a B2B product, it is something I will look for in the future when buying anything that has a glass screen as a way of deciding a products price to value. And all from a successful mobile campaign and proper formatting. And you all know if the formatting had been an issue this blog post would of been teaching you all how not to conduct a mobile campaign!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Fun Friday - Funny People on the Twitter

Yeah yeah yeah! Shut it ok! You thought I was going to have a post on Famous Funny people. Well my funny people are funnier than those funny people and they deserve a platform for recognition!

So here are some people who seem to always crack me up. They are irreverent, witty, and even occasionally charming, but don't let that fool you. It is all a front. In fact I am not even going to give you their names, just what they are famous for in my world. You can look them up yourself. And who doesn't need a laugh during a grueling work day? =P
@sydcon_mktg - for some reason she dwells on last years NHL Stanley Cup for her Chicago Blackhawk's and constantly seeks to humiliate me for being a NY Islander's fan. But the Hawks were so last year and my team is an up and coming force. Watch for the Islanders in 2027! BTW she is a really hockey mom. Not like that Alaskan impostor!

@dan_coyle is a traveling rapscallion bard (who the hell is a bard these days?). He plays guitar and women swoon. I know people joke about women drivers, its not that they drive poorly, it is that they are listening to Dan and get lost in his voice. Well he is in Europe right now on tour after Interpol received his permission slip we signed for him. And his experience with handling my cross border skirmishes with Canada will come in handy in the EU.

Talking of cross border Skirmishes @catelorimer is Canadian through and through. She prefers her bacon round, her winters cold, and if I ever get into a bar fight I want her on my side. She also drives her dog sled way to fast causing havoc in small villages and says the word 'Ay' often.

@ShellyKramer a whipsmartass punk NYer who started traveling to California (well she won't admit this) when she was younger and stopped in Kansas City and never left. But she stays on the Missouri side of Kansas. I told you how smart she is! But also does checks in on FourSquare at Kansas City Star Newspaper Vending Machines. So maybe not that smart.

@cbaccus who seriously has a pretty hoity-toity title at a very prestigious firm but you know how those title and prestige things go. Chris really loves Facebook. He and I seem to have laughs at Facebook's expense quite often. Oh and he loves cars. He is a huge fan of the 1977 Pontiac LeMans and owns 3 of them. Normally he can be seen rocking these wheels to Eminem.

Lastly if you have ever been to an H.E.B. or been assaulted by a Werehole or an Asswolf you are not alone. @aaronstrout @dkdzyn and @doogsatx have been and viciously at that. And they will tell you all about it. It is one reason I refuse to visit the ATX or go to SXSW. I mean who wants to have to get a rabies shot after being bitten by a Werehole.

These are just a sampling of the wild and crazy people I have met on the Twitter. I suggest start with these folks and build up your comedic tolerance and then come back to me for more.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Social Tuesday - Your Brand is not a Social Media Rock Star

Unless of course you are a Rock Star!

With all the Social Media Talking Heads trying to con Brands into thinking that Social Media is such a game changer for Sales in hopes of raking in Speaking Fees and Selling Books, does their Yapping hold up to reality? No of course not. 

I have blogged about why Social is not in the C Suite of Major Brands. LINK
I have blogged about why we don't care about your Brand being on Social. LINK 
Unless of course we are pissed and then you had better be. LINK

But the question comes down to why. Why do we on average only engage with about 4 Brands regularly via Social Media? Seriously think of the hundreds of Brands in your life today all around you. How many will you engage with via Social Media today? Do a test. Count them after you read this. Remember almost every Brand now has a Facebook Page or Twitter Account. Count them.

I think the reason is passion. 

We are passionate about a lot of things in our life. But very few Brands are we passionate about. And even fewer are we so passionate that we want to engage with them during our day. I might love surfing or rock climbing and have specific gear I am sold on. But it's the sport not the gear I am most passionate about. So here are some recent observances to prove my point:

The Chemical Brothers have 755,000 Fans on Facebook and got 270 Engagements in 15 minutes from a post.

Doritos with 5 million fans posted this on Jan 16th and I took this snapshot on Jan 28th. 723 Engagements in 12 Days!

World reknowned DJ Sasha has 166,000 Fans and got 135 Engagements in 3 Hours.

McDonalds has 7.1 million fans and had 918 Engagements in 3 Days.

The Glitch Mob has 95,000 Fans and got 777 Engagements in 3 hours.

But some Brands truly drive passion. But this is rare.

Volcom Clothing has 1.15million fans and had over 1500 Engagements in 17 hours yesterday. I am passionate about Volcom. Though as with any Facebook post I did not see this because we only see 5-10% of Posts in our stream on a good day!

The moral of this story is people are never going to be as passionate about your Brand as you you feel they are. You compete with a lot of things in people's lives. There are priorities. Many consumer Brands are beloved and bought and used by loyal dedicated customers, but just because you are now using Social Media does not mean you will be elevated above a Band or someones best friend.

Remember Social Communication Technology is a Revolution in Interpersonal Communication. Not a Revolution in Marketing. 

At any moment Brands can be locked out of the conversation. People will be migrating to new networks and take more of their discussions private, which is going to happen. So the best advice you can have because a Facebook Page or Twitter Account is not going to impact a big Brand the way the Talking Head you overpaid for advice told you:

Stick to the three pillars of excellence Great Product, Right Price, Great Customer Service.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Mobile Monday - Platforms Suck! Long Live Platforms!

The latest development with Nokia deciding to partner with Microsoft to integrate Windows 7 Mobile in their phones is something everyone needs to watch. This article pre-announcement from the Economist LINK shows market share and profits of the various hardware manufacturers. Here are two other articles on the announcement. One I find interesting is with Nokia in financial straits Microsoft is pretty much buying their way in: LINK LINK

We all know competition is good and healthy. It will ensure the best products and services come to market. But does this really mean we will always have the choice? I don't know if that is true. I have a Droid2 which I love even though it is buggy, poor battery life, freezes up, and requires plenty of reboots. Most of the Apps are universal so if I get an IPhone for my next phone I just re-load an App and it works seamlessly.

But what about the Apps I had to pay for? Do you really think Apple is going to just give them to me for free from the App Store? Definitely not. Nor would the eventual Windows App Store, Blackberry, or Android Stores when people switch.

Nokia sells a lot of phones. If they can pull this off and make yet another platform relevant this creates a quandary for Brands, Developers, Tech Companies, Cellular Networks, and Consumers. It is possible that a first time buyer might not realize that decision could be one that corners them with the chosen platform should they invest in Apps and Content that winds up unique to that Phone or Platform.
This gets even more complicated when Handset Manufacturers make customized Applications themselves. Verizon backs up my contacts on their cloud so when I get a new phone it downloads to the phone. But don't think Apple, Samsung, Motorola will make it as seamless for anything that is unique to the phone itself.

There is one group who are extremely excited about this new development: Mobile Agencies and 3rd Party APP Developers who do integration work for clients. When a Brand decides they have to have their content or APPs work on every platform they have to pay for this.

The groups that will have tough decisions are any Brands without deep pockets and independent APP developers who might have to choose which platform to develop for.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Fun Friday - the Podcast Editition!

I listen to several Podcasts on Marketing. There are three I listen to religiously. And a few I listen to when I can, and wish I could more due to time constraints. All are worth your time. You can learn an immense amount of marketing insight and current industry developments from most. One is just so delightfully irreverent that if they did not discuss Marketing I wouldn't care.

Start with my longest running favorite The Beancast hosted by Bob Knorpp (@thebeancast) out of North Carolina. Not only is Bob a great guy personally he somehow gets many of the best minds in Marketing onto his show, with people from around the world. Bob is really smart and always comes up with topics that are relevant to today. He is such a good moderator I tell him it's is very much like NPR's Left, Right and Center but much more lively and brisk with the banter. Many of the bloggers listed on the left have been on his show. It comes out every Monday and is available on ITunes or his Website.

Next is Bill Green (@MTLB) of Make the Logo Bigger and Angela Natividad (@LucktheLady) of Live and Uncensored. Angela is a California ExPat living the life in Paris, and Bill is an Buffalo via Connecticut ExPat now living the life in South Carolina. They are hilarious and definitely my best friends I have never met in person yet. Angela reminds me of the elites of acerbic wit and timely discourse, and Bill is very North East blunt say it as it is and not afraid to say. The show is uncensored though it varies from a very serious nature with some guests to complete hilarious chaos. You can subscribe on ITunes or at their Blog. They also get world wide guests most recently @Sandmonkey who through a mutual friend of Angela's became her friendslong before the uprising in Egypt that he became a fairly prolific participant. To prove Adverve's irreverence it used to come out on Wednesday, then sometimes Thursday or sometimes Friday. Now it is coming out Mondays. They also cover anything from Politics, News, Movies, Technology, PR, Environmental Disaster, Design, Art, Journalism, War Photography, and sometimes Marketing.

This is R Rated but as an Ode to Adverve I created a special movie for them:

Next is the Quick-n-Dirty Podcast which is hosted by Aaron Strout - CMO of Powered part of the Dachis Group (@aaronstrout) and Kyle Flaherty of Breaking Point (@kyleflaherty). Kyle is the new Co-Host replacing Jennifer Leggio from ZDnet (@mediaphyter) who founded the Podcast with Aaron. Aaron and Kyle are Boston transplants living in Austin, Tx big Patriots fans and yet somehow I still like them a lot, great peeps and very smart! It takes place on Thursdays live at 3pm on Blog Talk Radio. During the show you can log in and participate in the Chat Room. The format specifically focuses on Social Media and Mobile, with the occasional broader Marketing topic. They usually have a special guest and a Tweeter of the day. The chat room can get rambunctious and they cover a lot of ground in 30 mins. To get a taste of the format I also made a wonderful movie of the Podcast, though of course I need to make a new one with Lyle replacing Jennifer!

I will cover more Podcasts in next Friday. I figured I just sucked 2.5 hours of time from your week as it is that you are never, ever getting back! But worth every penny. Oh wait they are free. But nothing comes free. What's the catch. Plain old addiction that will benefit your career. If there is such a thing.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Why You Should Not Use Facebook Apps!

My friends in LA want me to vote for them in hopes they will win a Trip to Argentina which is their home country as part of a Valentines Day Promotion. Sounds romantic right? It sure is. But should I allow this App to run so that I can vote for my friends? Absolutely not! My profile is on complete privacy. But let's run through what LAN Airlines wants so that I can vote for my friends:

1] Access to my basic information - Why do they need this? I just want to vote for my friends!

2] Post to my wall - by allowing access I am agreeing to allow this Airline unlimited access to posting to my Facebook wall and thus contacting any of my connections. Why do they need this? I just want to vote!

3] Access to my data at anytime - even when logged out. Why? To sell it to others? What do they need my data for? All I want to do is vote!

4] Access to my profile information - all the stuff I keep private from the world they want access too! Why? I JUST WANT TO VOTE!!

Access denied!

This is horrible stuff people get snowed all the time from Facebook. And if you are given such a screen you are crazy to accept. Imagine you have a 13 year old kid or niece as part of your network. By clicking accept you are allowing this company to reach them at will. Are you crazy?!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Why Marketers And Advertisers Are Not Trusted

Seriously we are not. Nothing killed me more than the scene in the beginning of the Last Days of Disco when Kate Beckinsdale (Charlotte) finds out Mackenzie Austin (Jimmy) is in Advertising and the response is he is lower than a Used Car Salesman when it comes to potential dating partners. As well as Jimmy taking clients later in the movie to the Disco only to have the Club Owner ban him for bringing lame people.

Think about it. We often get paid to lie to consumers. Weren't most of the Superbowl Ads technically lies? Aren't Chryslers poor quality cars? But someone was paid to make this dramatic spot about Detroit. Totally lying about 25 years of crap pumped out by Chrysler to make it seem like they were something they were proud of? Do people physically assaulting others with cans of Pepsi Max really say anything about the product?

It also doesn't help that Marketers create all this nonsensical spin that we believe and pass on to each other. Yesterday I blogged about the Sentiment Measuring of the Superbowl Spots having technically Zero Value. It was a neat exercise the Brand Bowl, but really didn't say anything about the Brands or Products or future Sales. It was very murky based on what was being measured.


Who really cares if I like a commercial? Seriously, there are many commercials I will watch over and over for humor or entertainment and never buy their product. Why give kudos to an Ad Agency for that? For Branding something I will never buy? And if I already buy something do you need to craft funny ads for me? Teach me something. Then we are getting somewhere.

This week this Infographic was tweeted by some pretty heavy hitters in Social Communications whom I shall not name:

I immediately, being a champion of Mobile Communications more than Social Communications, jumped all over it claiming if it was true Facebook is worth 2 cents. Then I did the math. 200Trillion SMS Texts per day? That comes out to over 14,000 per person per day in the U.S. including babies, toddlers, etc. The rest of the info while maybe is correct, how can I believe it? What if a Mobile Agency used this data to convince a client to run SMS text campaigns?

Then I saw this article yesterday about Yelp! on EMarketer written by a fairly well known Social Communications and SEO person.

I am a fan of Yelp! btw. I have used it's Mobile app and really like it. It is one of the best Apps for finding information about local businesses I have come across. But I had to comment because the data sounds so impressive. A photo is uploaded to Yelp! every 30 seconds. Wow! Sounds like a lot. Which comes out to 57 Photos per US State per day. And 3.2 Million users is a very small group nationally. Nothing to sneeze at. But only 64,000 per state.

A better write up would of just stuck with showcasing how easy it is to use the App, check In to places, write reviews from your phone, and upload photos, without the claims of 'universal overwhelming usage'.

Everyday we see Advertising and Marketing that is shallow, biased, white lies, fibs, to outright deceitful. And we do it to each other as well! Most of the Ad Age Top 50 marketing blogs I do not read because they are just BS. That is why I often say Marketers are the biggest suckers. But whether it is the Brand's fault or the Agency's fault it does our industry no help for our image. 

And to tell you the truth Charlotte wound up shagging Jimmy in the film, even though he was such a shallow loser. But so was.

This hilarious scene discussing in depth Lady and the Tramp is a much watch for all creatives who tell stories.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Social Tuesday - Why Social Sentiment and Ad Interest is a False Measure

This is the snapshot from the Brandbowl Website that was created by Radian6, and Mullen Agency. It captured all the tweets using the #brandbowl hashtag to judge sentiment.

Basically shows number of tweets. And the difference between Positive and Negative sentiment. So VW at this point had 9505 Tweets and a plus 30 sentiment. But what does it mean? We liked the Ad? The Brand? The Product? No one knows. Unless VW sees an increase in searches or website hits, calls to dealers, and sales does this mean anything except: Thanks for the great commercial?

What about Negative Sentiment. Does it mean I dislike the Spot, the Brand, the Product? Does Lipton and Best Buy know that I will not spend a nickel with them for 1 full year because they used M&M and Bieber? Do they know that many people thought the Pepsi spots were classless and often showing bodily assault? Or the Groupon spots also being a bit uncouth and strange? (Yes Alex Bogusky it's ok for you to be smug today!)

Edward Boches , Mullen's Chief Innovation Officer has a few posts on the Brandbowl: LINK   LINK

BTW I loved the VW commercial. And ironically they had 12.5 Million views on YouTube before the game! But all I know of the Passat is I can start it from my key chain! That said I did enjoy participating in the Brandbowl.

This is the final top 4. As you can see Chrysler took the top spot. But sentiment wasn't as positive. Part of the rankings took in chatter. Now using a polarizing Celebrity like M&M will cause chatter.

But focusing on Chrysler. Old car lineup. They showed nothing new. They have horrible quality ratings. Does a great commercial mean a car will not fall apart? Does it make up for an old lineup. I know they have new cars coming out soon, but not sure Fiat is stellar for quality either. But what does the commercial change? 

Now the social media aspect is interesting. Brands can technically see if people like their commercials outside of focus groups almost instantly. Even if it doesn't connect with Sales immediately and then pray. Still most chatter is off line or out of sight and there still needs to be work connecting long term success.

Lastly Media Curves did their own traditional assessment with each spot having a sentiment line as the spot progresses. And guess what? They have Chrysler ranked 40th!

Except for a very few Ad Spots in the last 15 years very few moved Beer as much as chatter either. Personally I felt this spot was ok. But why the high sentiment? Puppies earn high sentiment!

Now the big disconnect is between successful Ads which make people like the Ad, and Sales. Which if there is no sales increase the Creative Agency will still say 'Mission Accomplished' if sentiment was high/positive. Technically in some cases they can do that. It's not an Agency's fault if a product is bad. Though that reduces the public's trust in Advertising as a whole. 

My view for  the Superbowl is major brands like Coke, Pepsi, Bud kind of pay us back for having to endure Advertising overload all year long. For new brands and products it is a great launch pad and worth the investment/risk. But overall it's kind of like a know that hole in the water that takes all your money. 

Would Bud or Coors or Pepsi sell less product in 2011 if they didn't buy commercial time at the Superbowl? Nope. Not at all.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Mobile Monday - To App or Not to App that is the Question

In 2010 there was a mad rush to make branded Apps. And with the release of Android and Blackberry Markets there are a few hundred thousand Apps out there. The question is does making a Branded App make sense?

First let me discuss finding an App. Unless you advertise using Traditional Methods chances of your App being found and downloaded is slim. There are just too many! And such a small screen. And the Market is crowded! I found 20 Flashlight Apps for my Droid2!
Next question is why would I use your App? Most Apps get downloaded and then never used. I need value. I have downloaded since August about 40-50 Apps. I use only a few regularly:

MobiNews - Free Economist, NY Daily News, New Yorker, Guardian UK
New York Times - HootSuite - Twitter for Android
Gowalla/FourSquare - GPS Navigator -ESPN Score Center
BBC News -Double Twist (my music player) - Soundcloud (stream music)
Yelp - Huffington Post - Skyfire Browser - and a few games

Most others I barely use. But they are nice to have if needed. Like a currency converter, or Google Translate. And the Apps I do use as far as I know are not making money from me. Some pitch the annoying AdMob banner ads, but I haven't clicked on one or seen anything of interest since August. What if you spend money to make an App that is never used or benefits your Brand or Business long term? Why waste the money!

As you can see each screen can only hold a few Apps. So if you are a heavy App user screen space is limited. So why an App? What will I get from your App that will 1] want me to use it regularly and 2] benefit your Brand or Business in a way to make you or save you money?

I recently blogged about App integration and how not doing so hurts you. LINK 
This costs money. But it can cost you more money not doing this. But I can see the HuffPost or New York Times willing to give me some free content just so I do not seek elsewhere and maybe find someone I wind up liking better. 

The small screen is an inhibitor for shopping:

You won't get a view of 10's or 20's of products at once. You will get 3-5. (Just like the App Stores). And search can be clumsy. So this is an area that ease of use is critical. And of course you have to format your store front for mobile. If you have the resources to do this it can be a big pay off. Amazon has sold well over $1 billion in product via mobile. I know Pizza Hut and Dominoes have well regarded Apps to order Pizza.

The question is are you capturing sales you would never have gotten? Are sales just migrating like the Pizza Apps seem to be doing? Is this lowering costs? All these things have to be taken into account to make the proper decision.

In summary:

1] Do you have the money to create an App?
2] Are you ready to promote it off Mobile (in your store, online, traditional)

3] Are you willing to ensure it is a seamless experience including how it integrates with other Apps or Software? 

3] What is the benefit for the consumer to want to use it?

4] What is the benefit to your Brand or Business?

The worst decision is to create an App just because you want to have an App or feel it's important to be seen as a company that has an App with no Strategic, Financial, or Customer Service benefit for you or your customers! 

And if it is your Agency pushing this ask them why? Besides giving them a reason to make more in Billings!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Fun Friday - Street Art

I love street art. Can't get enough. Not the lame ass name tag that deface property. I am talking real art. I don't care if it is on public or private property. Trust me. The art almost always improves the wall it is on.

We all know about Banksy and Shepard Fairey. But there is so much more. So here is some great places for you to explore and see what great art is out there. Just remember to keep your eyes out and pay attention when you are outside during your commute or shopping.

Kind of sucks that these are now regulated by the town. Used to be anyone over 16 with a can of spray paint could paint here. I would ride my bike down to see the new work all the time. My ex-neighbor and friend from Redondo Beach TikiJayOne was very prolific in West LA. He had me help him do the whole set of walls one night something he felt was never done before.

You know for a fact that white is the most AWESOME white ever painted. Well of course it was me! I remember getting half way across covering the previous art and my friend said 'Slow down. Just in case some of that art was done by gangsters'. I assumed because it's one thing to paint something new, and another to look like a do gooder cleaning the place up at 2am!

In NY my friend @ElCelso - LINK has a loose group of great artists that were known as the Electric Love Crew, kind of a street art collective. Here is a great repository of photos or you:

Celso does incredible Nudes!

His studio is in a building visible from the West Side Highway. They used to have this amazing amount of art outside for all to see until the owners decided to paint a lame ass jungle scene.


After: LAME!

Some of Celso's friends do incredible work, check the web for Abe Lincoln Jr - LINK, Choice Royce, Plasma Slug, Dark Cloud, Keely, GoreB, DirtyBoards, or follow people like @cmonstah (Celso's lovely wife) - LINK or Luna Park  - LINK

Another great source for NYC Street Art is and you can also follow them on the Twitter @BKStreetArt

Lastly this is a site based in Moscow. It is in Russian but the Art Speaks for itself: and they are also on the Twitter: @vivacity_ru

Some really incredible movies are available on Netflix as well. I highly recommend:

Bomb It - A Film by John Reiss - he goes around the world incredible stuff
Beautiful Losers - by Aaron Rose - which has a lot of street art history

I love going on walking tours of street art, especially in NYC's Lower East Side and Williamsburg. But it can be found everywhere.Some from my travels:


Woodside, Queens
Woodside, Queens
Williamsburg, Brooklyn (Celso v GoreB)
Williamsburg, Brooklyn