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TDavid and The AMA

12/16/2004

Came into Seattle this afternoon in a fog that lifted as we landed. Beautiful. Hope it's a sign that the AMA Workshop on blogging will run smoothly.

Wanted to give you a closure to TDavid and the AMA. Unfortunately, TDavid's not able to attend tomorrow's workshop. (But he's got a rain check if the progam is repeated on the west coast.)

His post was gracious and friendly. Also seems he saw Robert Scoble last night at a Seattle blogger meet up (wish we had those in Atlanta) and chatted with him and a reporter from the Seattle Times about the AMA event. No, he didn't go into any detail about that...hope it was favorable.

So think TDavid and I are now pals. Looking forward to the time when we can talk about blogs and marketing and biz stuff. As I posted back to TDavid, Bloggers are friendly people...especially when dialogue is begun.

Sidebar: I was walking down Alaskan Way this afternoon and all of a sudden it hit me ... here I am in Seattle (which is becoming one of my fav cities) about to talk blogging with some of the smartest people in the biz...with event attendees who want to know more about how to use blogs in marketing. Sometimes life is pretty good!

AMA Learns A Lesson About The Blogosphere

12/15/2004

This is a lesson about the influence of the blogosphere - a la BL Ochman who this fall showed the world that bloggers could change the direction of a major PR conference.

Background: The American Marketing Association developed a workshop on blogs; not surprising, the program was/is targeted to marketers; and in AMA's tradition, is being facilitated by practioners in the field ... in this case bloggers. Speakers: Seattle/NYC/Chicago. AMA asked me to chair the workshop and it's been my pleasure to work with a group of speakers who are knowlegable, nice (that's a Robert Scoble word) and passionate about sharing their experiences about blogging.

The Surprise: AMA is no stranger to putting together professional develoment workshops but even with its many years of experience the staff was not prepared for the impact that bloggers would/could have before doors were even opened to the first session. What happened? We got dished by TDavid who questioned the substance of the sessions and in turn, the value of the program.

As Pat, the director of programming told me - we might have expected this type of feedback after a workshop but never thought we'd get this type of response prior to it.

As I told Pat - AMA is playing in a new paradigm...the blogosphere. The rules are different. Hey...the rules are still being invented.

Advice From the Speakers: Henry Copeland reminded us about what Clue-Train says: markets are conversations. And Ben McConnell told us that a customer vigilante can often be converted into a customer evangelist by getting him/her involved. Robert Scoble felt that a workshop blog would help increase credibility. Great example of conference blog - Blog Business Summit.

AMA's Solution: In my role as workshop chair, I posted a response to TDavid thanked him for his suggestions (which really will help us make a better program) and cordially invited him attend the Seattle workshop as AMA's guest.

Lessons Learned: AMA takes own blog medicine. Thrills attendees. (I stole that from Henry!)

Now I must really finish packing!

GourmetStation Blog - Ad Blog Campaign (4)

12/14/2004

Gourmet_station_ad2_12_04 GourmetStation's blog ad campaign is a week into the 2-week campaign. Although we had a few challenges with the administrative end of Blogads (up loading graphics and payment system; since each ad had a different promotional, tracking code we couldn't purchase in quantity) it was not a complex process.

So in the sentiment of my new direct marketing pal, Bob Bly, have we seen ROI? No, not yet. In fact, the click throughs have been disappointing.

TowleRoad is pulling in the most hits. Could be that the ad for this blogGourmet_station_ad_12_04_2 (graphic below) is targeted to the audience.  At $85 it was our most expensive buy. 

A Small Victory is coming in with the second highest hits. Perhaps winning the 2004 Best Weblog - Best Culture Blog category will drive more traffic and someone will click and buy. By the way, the very creative I Blogger "song" is worth a visit. And much better than the "My Top Posts of 2004" lists that seem to be making the blogosphere rounds.

Betsy's Page and The Food Section are pulling some and then it's a bobsled ride on an icy hill from there. GourmetStation Holiday Campaign is also running on: Socialite Life, The Hedgehog Report, Cathy's World, Home School and Other Education Stuff, A Full Belly, Professor Bainbridge; the evangelical out post and Lip-Sticking

As Donna, GourmetStation's prez says, let's see what the next week brings . In the meantime, we'll tweak the text. Could be as another new blogging friend, Robert  Scoble, keeps reminding me we're 6 months to a year too soon. But gosh, darn we really want this to work...now!

ABCs for the 21st Century

12/13/2004

It's not your father's or mother's ABCs. Abc_book Internet kids have a new way to learn the alphabet - it's the Google Alphabet. Artist of the Blogosphere how about an ebook?

Divas, let's put a marketing spin on it. How about an ABC picture book developled by Google or a SEO/M company to use as a give away? Something to take back to the kiddies from the trade show. Bet this one would stick around...unless it found it's way to "E" is for ebay! 360i and Prominent Placement how about it?

Heard it from ResearchBuzz

Online Communities

12/13/2004

Dana, BlogSavant, has very generously posted the PPT presentation, Building Online Brand Communities: Strategies and Implications, that he gave at Decision Sciences Institute Conference. Excellent information and well-researched.

Friday Fun

12/10/2004

Diva of Design - design*sponge

My friend Chris Bonney, Bonney Research, sent me an "e" crowing like a proud papa about his daughter Grace's blog - design*sponge. And well he should!design*sponge is magical.

design*sponge began life last summer as a wee blog to champion Brooklyn-based designers. Within weeks it was discovered by young designers who buzzed the site. Soon Grace was scooping columnists from main stream pubs like the NYT, had lovin' links all over the blogospher and is now the Diva of the Design World.

Dropletornaments_zm_1 design*sponge points us to some very cool ideas check out these Christmas ornaments.

Rug Rats Buzz

12/08/2004

M@ and I had an email volley tonight about buzz marketing. Carol, Diva of the Theater and I saw Finding Netherland. Let me tell you this buzz thing...aint no new news. Seems opening night J.M. Barrie stacked the house with a bunch of kids (who can resist the giggles of a child?). He knew the kids would help the stoggy English theatre patrons to be more open and accepting of the strange world he created of pirates, fairies and Indians. Finding_neverland_9_1

One could say that the "Alpha-Pub" rug rats were one of the first buzz marketing strategies...Barrie had a hit on his hands. Of course, if helped that Peter Pan was a brilliant play! DIva's let's take our cue from Mister Barrie...Just believe. I'll leave it up to you to fill in the blank.

By the way, Johnny Depp is captivating as J.M. Barrie and with or without the buzz Miramax has a sure fire hit with Finding Netherland.

MMMgood!

12/06/2004

Starbucks make room for the newest kid on the food block ...Cereality a cereal bar & cafe. Inspired by Seinfeld this spin on an old theme, breakfast cereal, is the coolest new restaurant concept.  Cereality_cereal_bar_cafe

Set in a retro kitchen, with the staff wearing PJs, it's a fabulous experiential marketing strategy. The branding extends with an excellent, interactive website complete with virtual tour and in-store video testimonials.

Heard it from: Ad Freak

Sidebar: If you haven't discovered AdWeek's blog, Ad Freak, well worth a visit.

More on Buzz Marketing

12/06/2004

Article in the Sunday NYT's on buzz marketing. Guess they don't know about the new buzz word for it - Alpha-Pub. (Might need to subscribe - it's free)

Friday Fun: Creating New Art Forms

12/03/2004

Full_radius_dance A bare stage. Lights go up. Dancers' movements take focus. Wheelchairs blurr into the background. The first performance of Full Radius Dance begins.

Jay Tribby, the ED of VSA arts of Georgia, kindly invited me to Friday night's holiday performance of Full Radius Dance. Full Radius Dance is a unique company that weaves dancers on foot with dancers in wheelchairs to create technically demanding, visually exciting choreography works. Inspiring. Powerful. Elegant. And surprising. "Wheelchairs don't dance, says director Douglas Scott. "It's people that dance." These talented artists danced their with hearts and souls.

Divas, it's a wild crazed world and holidays add to the madness. It's important to make the time to find some Friday Fun that will inspire and feed your soul. Sometimes you find magic in unexpected places. Thank you Jay for an lovely surprise!

Sidebar: VSA arts of Georgia provides access to the arts for people with disabilities and those who are economically disadvantaged. And as Jay says, "We're creating new art forms."