Monday, April 26, 2010

Thou shalt own the Social Media Bible

So you're already into Social Media and want to go deeper OR let's say you're on the brink and thinking of jumping into Social Media OR you're already neck-deep and want to get immersed into Social Media...

Here's a book to answer all your questions on Social Media. It's a business guide, a text book, a bible indeed... with commandments and all. In fact, it's 3 books rolled into one and a great place to start your journey into SM or to venture further. I found the Expert Insights particularly enriching.

Wholeheartedly, I recommend this book to anyone with any interest in SM, no matter where on the knowledge continuum you are. Don't just read it. Own it. This one's a keeper. Visit the TSMB website here.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

It's official. Privacy is dead. User beware!

Social Media is a powerful branding toolkit. Used correctly, it can create considerable social influence.

But there is another side to it - the naked side. Here's a lighter look at the phenomenon of Twitter and how it sounds the death knell for privacy.

I came across this Venn Diagram while wandering the web one idle browse. Immediately, my mind raced to wonder where I'd seen the Social Venn before? After a quick mental jog, the answer popped into my head.

L-R: Vaughn Davis, Adam Good, Chris Chambers

Take a look at Vaughn's tee. A cool find. Very relevant too. What better to wear to a Social Media in Business Forum? Good call... @vaughndavis.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Gary Vaynerchuk a.k.a. Gary Vee - man on fire

Gary Vaynerchuk is a social media brand and Twitter phenom. A self-made wine mogul, he videoblogged his way to fame via Wine Library TV.

Popularly known as Gary Vee, he's not only one of USA's top wine experts, he has carved a niche for himself as a SM pro and business coach.

Here's Gary killing it at the Web 2.0 Expo. A galvanizing talk, it is loaded with incisive insights. Plenty of brain food. Feel free to make mental notes.

Here he is dripping passion on CNN or as Gary would say, crushing it live.

To learn more about Gary, visit his website or follow him on Twitter here.

#SMCakl 3 - Social Media in Journalism

On Tuesday 13 April, Social Media Club - Auckland had its third catch-up.

The theme for the evening was 'Social Media in Journalism' with 4 keynote speakers quite well-known within media circles and very well-informed:

Glenn Williams, an Radio Disc Jockey at Kiwi FM
While its still early days, and we are all learning more about it everyday, Social Media has helped me build a community and get closer to my listeners. As you know, radio is all about audience feedback.

Ben Gracewood, Software Developer/ Gadget Reviewer, TVNZ
Social Media is all about the people. It's about doing what we normally do as humans. Used correctly, it can be a powerful tool but at the end of the day, it's just that... another tool. And yes, be honest!

Chris Keall, Head of Technology and Digital Editor at NBR
Nowadays, it's always a race against time about who's breaking the news first. While Social Media cannot replace quality journalism, it's sped things up a bit. Keeps us on our toes. Much busier too!

Nigel Horrocks, Radio NZ Tech Speaker/ Consultant, AikenStix
Social Media is evolving and as yet does not offer a tried, tested revenue model. Transparency is double-edged. Corporates need to strategise and be prepared for negative response.

The evening was hosted by Simon Young
The talks were followed by an interactive Q&A round where audience members shot back some loaded counterpoints. Click here to watch more videos on Justin Flitter's blog.

While the evening went off very well, it raised an interesting point:
Is Social Media too vast, undefined and amorphous to be discussed under one theme? Is SM too thinly spread to be discussed under one specific industry, in this case journalism? SMC Auckland's founder, Alex Erasmus has neatly blogged it up here.

Fast forward to Monday 19 April, the SMC committee met to discuss topics, venues and to work out the admin & logistics for upcoming events. A productive one hour, the brainstorm included Vaughn Davis, Nigel Horrocks, Alex Erasmus, Nicholas O' Flaherty and yours truly.

As an avid blogger, ardent advocate and keen observer of Social Media, I'm happy to note that attendance to the Auckland chapter of the Social Media Club is steadily growing. So is the community.

The next catch-up (#SMCakl 4) is on May 11 (always the second Tuesday of the month). Visit the Facebook profile here to join in. Keep an eye out for updates on future events.

Old Spice TVC - I'm on a horse

Q - First of all, what is an ad for Old Spice doing on a Social Media blog?
A - It could well be the most viral (blogged, shared, YouTubed) ad of 2010.

Simply because it's a wickedly awesome TV commercial that makes you fall for it the first time you watch it. (*Love at first frame.) Not only does it keep you rivetted from start to finish, it has you laughing out loud.

It uses a powerful film technique where the protagonist speaks to the viewer in first person - taking full charge of the narrative by talking directly into the camera. Opens on this rock-solid dude (more on him later) talking product benefit as scenarios morph seamlessly and props drop in suddenly - without digressing or diluting the humour.

Indeed, a rare ad that combines expert story-telling and crafty film-making. The true genius of this flick is in its taut, quick-paced edit.

Once you've got a good thing going, recreate the magic in half the time...

For more dope on the ad, check out the interview with Craig Allen & Eric Kallman of Wieden+Kennedy, Portland, the guys behind this gem of an ad.

I guess a lot of the credit for this ad goes to the flawless timing and delivery of its main man. He is Isaiah Mustafa, a former NFL footballer (that explains the godly bod). Since appearing in the Old Spice ad (Feb 2010), Isaiah's become a Twitter phenom, made it on The Ellen Show and even has his own page on Wikipedia. Indeed, he's on a horse!

*Love at first frame - Now I know I've used that phrase before. That was for the Sony GT4 ad which once again, is a rare blend of fine story-telling and killer film-making. (Click here to view the ad)

Monday, April 19, 2010

Q - Why do ads go viral? A - Ask Evian.

Viral marketing is the cheapest and probably most effective form of marketing today. It involves content so contagious, it catches on and gets shared rapidly across online communities. Call it a social ripple effect.

Q - So why does some content (be it an ad, movie clip, song video, news story) go viral while some does not? That's a biggie and if you find the answer, let me know. Here's my A - If content is king, data is king-maker.

Media experts go to great lengths to ensure the ads go viral, at times adopting techniques like seeding. To seed an ad is to strategically plant content when & where the target prospect (a person most likely to spread the virus, pass it on, infect others) will receive it.

Q - But how does one identify a target prospect?
A - Relevant, accurate and scientifically sorted data.

Q - And just how does one acquire such quality data?
A - Ask Google Analytics, Dataminers, Media Researchers. Or Evian:)

The highly contagious Evian Waterboy

The very infectious Evian Roller-babies.
Update: June 2013: Here's the new Evian ad - 'Here Comes The Hotstepper' - most viewed ad on YouTube ever

Here's a list of the Top 10 viral ads (all 10 are winners!) from back in 2007, when viral marketing was just about taking off. Although the list is dated, it's enjoyable all the same & even has all the YouTube links. Enjoy!