Marketing Now part 3 – Q and A

May 7th, 2009

(This continues our coverage of the Marketing Now Conference. Also check out my posts on day 1 and 2 , and the three iJumpTV episodes devoted to the conference)
How would a blind man describe an elephant?

"Social media reminds me of the story of the five blind men and the elephant. Asked to describe the elephant, one said ‘it’s long and thin’, because he could feel the tail. Another said, ‘no, it’s flat and thin’, because he was feeling the ear. Yet another said ‘you’re crazy! It’s like a tree trunk, thick and round’, because he was feeling the leg.

"They all could see different aspects of social media, yet none of them could see it in its entirety. That’s the same kind of situation we’re in now – there’s a revolution beginning and we haven’t begun to see all the potential effects.

Yet on this panel we have some of the most expert elephant gropers in the world. They’ve been feeling the elephant for years. And they’re here to answer your questions."

That’s how I introduced the panel of speakers – Sharon Crost , Stephen Johnson , Jim Stewart , David Meerman Scott and Chris Brogan – in the final session of Marketing Now. It was an action-packed session, with almost as much commentary from the audience as from the speakers. Here are some of the highlights.

Greig Buckley, CEO of the Interactive Advertising Bureau , had a very interesting question about the future of ad-supported online services. To paraphrase his question, how will paid advertising online survive if marketers are shifting their efforts to free social media marketing ? (In fact, the word he used was "parasitic", but he was at pains to point out he implied no judgement in using that word)

The answers from the panel tended to say the same thing: we don’t see the solution yet, but it was strongly in the interests of media owners (and the owners of services like YouTube) to figure out a solution soon. None of them are in it for love, they are all in it for commercial reasons, but at the moment we are at an experimental stage.

Another question was about how to start an online community . One audience member had budgeted $25,000 to develop a Facebook-like community. Another audience member recommended , pointing out that it did most things an online community platform needs to do, for free (or US$25 a month for an ad-free service). But that’s only half the story.

The other half of the story is the need for a community leader or manager. The technology is just the beginning; communities need nurturing and leadership, and that can only be done by a person. So the panel’s advice: invest that money in a person and/or people to lead that community .

The last story, and by far the most common question we hear at iJump, is "where do we start?"

Of course, there is no one answer, so the next best thing was to ask people in the audience to share their plans and next steps. Most next steps included an exploration of Twitter and Google Alerts , as well as developing buyer personas (as per David Meerman Scott’s presentation ).

This session was also the beginning of the NZ Social Media Network – where socialising means business . Established by Siobhan Bulfin and ourselves, this is a place for business people to learn from each other about social media, with a New Zealand focus.

Even if you weren’t able to attend the conference, we’d love to see you at the NZ Social Media Network .

(Thanks to digitalART2 for the fantastic Elephoto)

Too much information? Sign up for our fortnightly email newsletters and reduce the clutter.

David Meerman Scott and Chris Brogan in New Zealand, day one

April 18th, 2009

Marketing Now Conference
Some connection troubles prevented me from posting this update until today. Enjoy! This is from Wednesday 15 April.

What are the new rules of marketing and PR? What does lead generation look like in a social media world?

Those were some of the questions covered today with two of the world’s top social media teachers, speakers and doers.

David Meerman Scott’s New Rules

David Meerman Scott kicked off the day with the new rules of marketing and PR. One of those rules is to give things away, and David backs his theory up with solid practice: download his free ebook here .

After a morning break he got onto his latest book, World Wide Rave , a study of why things ‘go viral’.

Towards the end of his session, David shared his own experience of what hasn’t worked – as well as what has – in promoting World Wide Rave. Not an easy thing for any marketer to do, but a really heartening thing for any other marketer to see – that any experimentation will have its share of mistakes.

That’s why you need to think like a venture capitalist or film producer. It’s not about the success of a single campaign, it’s about launching a portfolio of efforts, and measuring the success of each one.

Chris Brogan’s Lead Gen 2.0

Chris Brogan took the stage in the afternoon, and beguiled us all with stories about people he knew, experiences he’d had and … us! I wondered why he’d been taking photos all morning instead of listening to David. He’d been gathering material for his presentation-on-the-fly, a brilliant way of keeping our attention and helping us see things differently, by seeing ourselves!

I’m not going to try and summarise everything David and Chris said – that’s what live tweets are for . But I will note what stood out to me:

  • The more you release control, the more you stand to gain. For example, the old way to generate leads is to give something in exchange for an email address. But that limits the number of people who will make that effort, and it reduces your ability to spread your message. Give it away, don’t just half-heartedly give it away.
  • You are as valuable as your content. That’s a direct quote from David, and it was a chilling reminder for me to get back into blogging! Particularly since I was nodding in recognition of many things they were saying, and yet realising, I haven’t expressed this information! So I apologise, iJump readers. It’ll never happen again!
  • Marketers love rules. At iJump one of our sayings is, there are no rules, only relationships. I strongly believe this but I marvel at the outstanding success of David’s book (which we all got a free copy of, by the way!). It shows me that marketers hunger for boundaries, for the rules of the game, and it means there’s a lot of opportunity (and responsibility) for those who seek to delineate this new world. David has done an admirable job, giving clear guidelines while avoiding strict black-and-white rules.
  • Marketers are impatient. And rightly so. It’s your hunger for action that has got you where you are. The culture of social media, on the other hand, is discovered over time, like finding your way around a new neighbourhood. You could get a Lonely Planet guide, or you could take a gift to your new neighbours and get to know them up close.
  • Marketers find Twitter hard to understand. This isn’t from Chris or David, it’s from my continued observations. As a rule (remember, though, there are none!) people who communicate well in person struggle with twitter, while more introverted people like me take to the medium naturally. Of course, just as I have learnt to turn my personality up for face-to-face meetings (and I love presenting to a crowd), an extrovert can learn to navigate the body-language-free world of Twitter (and social media) with a willingness to explore, and some friends to help them.

That’s all from day one. More soon!

Too much information? Sign up for our fortnightly email newsletters and reduce the clutter.

Get a sneak peek of the Marketing Now Conference

April 8th, 2009

It’s just a week until the Marketing Now conference in Wellington, and if you need a little nudge to register, we have some sneak previews from two of the speakers.

International online marketing strategist Sharon Crost will run an interactive, enthusiastic session about unleashing your inner super hero:

YouTube Preview Image

And Melbourne-based social media specialist Stephen Johnson from DraftFCB will be addressing best practices in building brand advocates:

YouTube Preview Image

We’ll be putting up part 2 of our interview with Stephen over the long weekend. Subscribe to iJumpTV to make sure you see it!

Other speakers include Chris Brogan and David Meerman Scott , both legends in the small world that is social media, and ‘Google guru’ Jim Stewart .

The conference starts on Wednesday, 15 April, at Te Papa in Wellington. I hope to see you there!

Too much information? Sign up for our fortnightly email newsletters and reduce the clutter.

Social media experts invade NZ!

February 2nd, 2009

Marketing Now, April 15-16, Wellington Well it’s not quite an invasion, but there are an awful lot of very smart people hitting New Zealand in the next few months.

Feb 19: The Great Word of Mouth Experiment – Jaffe, Sernovitz

It starts in just 18 days with the Great Word of Mouth Experiment . Details here , but you won’t find registration details. This is an invitation-only event to map the marketing social networks of New Zealand (and, no doubt, further afield).

Speakers for the event are Joseph Jaffe , author of Join the Conversation , and Andy Sernovitz , author of Word of Mouth Marketing .

March 11-12: 2nd Digital Media Summit – Hopkins, Horne and more

In March there’s the 2nd Digital Media Summit , chaired by Australia’s top Social Media bloke Lee Hopkins , and featuring MySpace’s Rebekah Horne. Not to be outdone by the Aussies, there are also some pretty good kiwi speakers and panelists, including Jake Pearce , Helen Baxter and Ben Young .

The conference also features an unconference session, where the passive audience becomes an active contributor to the conversation.

April 15-16 Marketing Now – Brogan, Scott and more

The excitement doesn’t stop, it just gets better. On April 15th and 16th Marketing Now hits Wellington, featuring social media superstar Chris Brogan and David Meerman Scott , author of the The New Rules of Marketing and PR .

This conference has been organised by Siobhan Bulfin , an extraordinary person we met on our recent Wellington trip. She’s been learning social media for a year and already she’s put this conference together. Great skills!

There’s a Twitter-only special for Marketing Now , which is a significant discount , but available only if you’re on Twitter.


Sign up for Twitter , and follow me , Marie or Siobhan (all or any of us). And, using an @ reply, or a direct message, ask us about the Twitter-only special.

Too much information? Sign up for our fortnightly email newsletters and reduce the clutter.