* a quick note – this blog was created using wordpress.com, google docs and mspaint oh – and my phone
I learned some pretty useful things today, and in my books that’s always a good way to end off a day. This is especially true when the knowledge acquired is engaging, exciting and most of all – inspiring. I hope that doesn’t sound too much like a Standard Bank ad…
As marketers we sometimes fall in love with the sound of our own voices, whether it’s a great video campaign, that ‘perfect’ press release or a creative piece that you just can’t stop looking at – it’s all your own voice. This outgoing broadcast which is then shouted at your customers and prospects with the hope of consumption tacked on to the bottom. As today showed us, this old media approach to marketing with its push tactics is no longer relevant (though I’m not really sure it ever was). Consumers are now users; punters become publishers, and communication now flows both ways in the marketing transaction.
As the Clue Train Manifesto highlights in its very first point – “markets are conversations”. Sooner or later your company will come up in the conversation, and if you’re not listening then not only are you not gaining valuable user input on your product (which we pay research firms thousands to get), but you also loose the opportunity to defend any inaccurate or defamatory statements made about you in the conversation. I guess the short version of all of this is that we had better get into the conversation Especially when considering the rapid pace at which information is spreading across the glossy plains of web 2.0
These days everyone’s connected. Social networks are springing up all over the place, with different user groups and types flocking around different networks. There’s even a network about a product called Flock.
Mike wobbled my brain with the story about the effect that the Engadget blog post had on Apple‘s share price and the Dell laptop fiasco . I always knew that the blogosphere (lol) had power, but to see it demonstrated on that scale was a real eye opener.His insights into the way that Google works and especially the effect of the long tail also shed some light on a few questions that I was looking to have answered but didn’t know I wanted to ask.
One of the real highlights of today was seeing the pace at which the quantity of information is exponentially amassing and the futility of trying to consume or control it all. As Dave showed with his time versus information graph (i forgot to add the years) there is just too much information out there for one person to realistically consume and compute. The graph is a pretty rough illustration of this overwhelming fact, and for some real perspective, check out the Shift Happens vid.
One of the speakers that I was really stoked to see was Adii. I encountered Adii’s work on the weekend before the course (before I knew that he was a speaker) while I was searching for a template for my personal blog (http://lesterhein.blogspot.com) I wound up using one of Adii’s gorgeous designs so I was thrilled to be able to meet the man in person. I could see from the lightbulbs going on behind some of the eyes in the lecture hall that he had really demystified blogs for many of us and that the ‘iron curtain’ of adoption had been raised when the simplicity of the medium was demonstrated. WordPress was promoted by all to be the most accessible and powerful blogging platform (both in .com and .org guises) and there are a few more converts walking the streets today (@pamsykes). Well done Adii
On the topic of blogs, special thanks to Dave and Mike for opening my eyes to Afrigator and Amatomu (local blog aggregators). I’ve often felt that my blogs float around in cyberspace without any local audience or connection. This was due to me being under the false assumption that there were only a minute amount of South African bloggers about, and so there was no readership for my blog here. I can honestly say I haven’t been this happy to be proven wrong in a while
I know that this pilot post didn’t cover all the ground i intended to, but my bed just left a comment on one of my other blogs saying I’d better hurry up.
Before I go though, I thought I’d re-post the inspiration talk given by Sir Ken Robinson at TED I know that Dave thought he’d added it onto the disc, but alas – it isn’t there. Not to worry though, you can watch it below.
See you all in the morning.
P.S – It was great to use twitter to pass digital notes around the class, and ‘silently’ interact with some of the other delegates in real time about the topics being discussed. If this is all old hat to you, then excsue me, but I’m still relatively knew to twitter (though learning everyday thanks to @simonebiz)