Twitter mosaic

I first saw this Twitter mosaic idea appear when Neville Hobson used it to make a mug for himself. After sharing it in my Google Reader Shared Items Rick Klau made one and I’ve since seen it pop up around and about the Interwebz. So I thought I’d make mine and share it here. Go ahead and make your own as well.

Get your twitter mosaic here.

Marketing Madness in 60 Seconds: 2/20/09

static5Media: A study of journalists shows that 60 percent of them now contribute to a blog or website, with a third of them just getting started in the last year. I’m assuming this means something beyond just having a column repurposed online.

More talk about putting mainstream news content behind a pay wall, including news that the Associated Press is in discussions for just such an arrangement.

User-generated content continues to grow, with social networks being the largest creation platform for said creation.

Advertising: YouTube is selling more video ads to deeper-pocketed advertisers according to a new study. There’s also a significant amount of the most popular videos that came from marketers themselves.

Whatever it winds up looking like, there’s little doubt that the television advertising model is changing as media options proliferate and younger viewers enter the marketplace who have never known a world without on-demand, commercial-skipping viewing.

Creative agencies will this year be invited to the Interactive Advertising Bureau’s discussion on banner ads, a discussion that will try to bring together the needs of publishers and advertisers, two sides who sometimes have different views of a banner ad’s place in the world.

Ad networks are great for publishers who aren’t able to sell their own ads, but they’re also pushing rates down, which isn’t so great.

Mobile ads have high recall rates, especially among iPhone users. The format is expected to continue growing this year despite the recession, based largely on that recall number, something that’s falling for other platforms.

Social media: Despite all the talk that social media marketing expertise will eventually be part of everyone’s toolkit, Jim Tobin thinks there will always be a need for a someone or team of someone’s who are specialized in that field and are able to guide the way.

Retailing: A new study by Forrester Research draws a very clear line between effective customer service capabilities and customer loyalty, including the tendency of people to become enthusiasts and evangelists of a particular brand.

Poland on Smith

David Poland’s review of the Zack and Miri Make a Porno Blu-ray has him coming to much the same conclusion that I did after watching the movie, that this movie is a great leap forward in director Kevin Smith’s ability both behind the camera and as a writer.

I read an interview with Smith a while ago that this movie was the first that had the rest of Hollywood thinking he could direct other projects, meaning it was the first one where the film wasn’t filled with all his usual ticks and tricks and positioned him as capable of changing his style to match the material. Completely agree.

Burning questions

mmm-logo-aqua-name(Title used with apologies to Feedburner)

Question: Chris, why didn’t you publish a column reviewing the marketing campaign for Coraline? Seems like a movie you would have enjoyed tackling, especially since your brother-in-law repeatedly sent you emails with links to materials to include. What up with that?

Answer: You’re absolutely right. As a matter of fact I had a column about one-third finished but just couldn’t make it come together. It’s one of those that I just couldn’t fully wrap my head around and fully embrace. It happens sometimes, even with movies I’m excited about. But apparently I had no problem embracing the He’s Just Not That Into You or the Confessions of a Shopaholic campaigns. Go figure.

Question: Does this mean I can slap you repeatedly about the head next time I see you.

Answer: Ummm…no.

Question: Does this mean you’re an un-dedicated slacker who can’t be bothered to muster up enough energy to even try to please your readers? Follow-up question: Can I get my money back?

Answer: Yes. It also means I found it easier to go for cheap laughs at the expense of big, bloated campaigns than to try to analyze a movie with some heart and soul. And no, all transactions are non-refundable.

Question: Well at least there will be a handful of new columns to tide us over during the next couple weeks, right?

Answer: Actually no. If you noticed I haven’t published any columns this week and probably won’t next week either. The movies on the schedule just weren’t that exciting. Plus, I’m already starting to work on the bloated beast that will be my Watchmen column, so you’re just going to have to wait a couple weeks.

Question: Are you serious?

Answer: Ummm…yes.


Marketing Madness in 60 Seconds: 2/19/09

static4Tools: Alan Wolk writes an opinion piece for Brandweek that rightly says widgets too often resemble the old way of thinking about advertising, in that the product being marketed gets in the way of the message. The best widgets are those that are fun for the user and actually do something interesting ASIDE FROM marketing the product or brand.

Metrics: When it comes to video marketing efforts it’s a mistake to look to old metrics to define success. While substitutions for those metrics are still being fleshed out, it’s important to look at brand engagement and such to gauge the success of your campaign.

About half of marketers aren’t using analytics at all to measure their online campaigns and many of those that are are using multiple platforms, something that can lead to confusing conclusions.

Social Media: If you’re just beginning with social media Matt Dickman recommends you spend at least two hours a day listening, engaging and discovering and then expand from there as you feel you can or want to.

David Griner shares a slideshow on social media marketing he presented to a trade group recently that’s filled with good nuggets of wisdom, both anecdotal and in the form of hard statistics.

Email, social networking and SEO are the three common themes hit in the MarketingSherpa report outlined here.

The list of companies who are tops in terms of social media executions according to Abrams Research shouldn’t surprise anyone.

Fantastic chart of how many PR agencies who are promoting themselves as being social-media savvy are engaging in social media themselves.

Demographics: Wii is more popular among women and young children but not hard-core gamers. Xbox360 tends to attract those looking for additional features like social interaction and movie downloading. Playstation3 is most likely to be owned by the same people who bought previous versions. All this and more here.

Media: Nielsen has released its report on how the top 15 newspaper websites did as measured by unique visitors in 2008.

Advertising: Yahoo has begun introducing video and image ads in search results. Yahoo has long counted on their image ad abilities to keep them afloat, which makes me wonder why it took this long to get this rolled out.

Industry News: Paddison signs Wingnut, Sony hires Pavlic and more

agency-chair-bigThe new agency setup by Gordon Paddison, Stradella Road, has signed a deal to oversee all digital brand efforts for Wingnut Films, the production house of director Peter Jackson. While he was still at New Line Films Paddison was one of those working on the online marketing for Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Sony Pictures has brought Michael Pavlic back into the fold. Pavlic will assume the title of Senior VP of Creative Advertising at the studio and will oversee the campaigns for Sony’s upcoming slate of films as well as TV projects.

Those receiving Les Mason Awards – awards given to outstanding publicity work – are acknowledging that the Internet’s tendency to spread information (rightly or wrongly) quickly means their jobs are a lot harder.

The Director’s Guild of America has hired a new media research firm to help it compile statistics on, well, new media as part of its negotiations with studios.

Marketing Madness in 60 Seconds: 2/18/09

static3Advertising: Jeffrey Rayport at BusinessWeek takes a while to get there because he’s busy laying the ground for his argument but eventually gets to the point of saying cost-per-action or cost-per-click advertising is the future of the online ad market. They have higher rates and advertisers only pay when a positive action is taken.

Brian Morrisey (rightly) pegs “culture” as one of the primary stumbling blocks to true innovation in the advertising industry. As long as that culture holds to what’s been done and doesn’t adapt to what’s actually happening the advertising industry can never truly come into the new media world.

Terry Heaton points out how the same problems are facing both the media and advertising world as he tries to answer the question, “What if there is no equilibrium?”

Mobile: Mobile advertising still faces some hurdles but there’s a ton of other behaviors that mobile technology will enable or make easier.

Social Media: Susan Getgood advises marketers to look at the potential benefits of social bookmarking sites. Those benefits, though, are dependent on the marketers being respectful of the communities there and making sure they’re looking closely enough at the metrics to see what’s working and what’s not.

A really good primer on the state of social media marketing at SearchEngineWatch.

Scout Labs is the latest company to join the social media monitoring market. The company has been in limited testing of its low-cost monitoring solution for a little while and is now opening up to the wider audience.

Social Networking: Facebook has reverted to its old Terms of Service after a very loud outcry over concerns the social network would own people’s content. This is about the fifth time Facebook has adopted the “Introduce with no communication, act surprised by the backlash and backtrack” approach, usually followed by the company doing it anyway.