But I Don’t Drink Coffee!

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Today’s presentation from Annie and Michael has really inspired me to get organised and start building my personal social and professional brand. I instantly started setting up my Linkedin account when I got home (feel free to add me http://www.linkedin.com/profile/edit?trk=hb_tab_pro_top) and began ‘cleaning up’ posts on my Twitter and Facebook. A theme from the presentation and one underlying message I’ve noticed from investigating how to begin a marketing career is, get involved and begin connecting with influential and interesting people who are already established in the field of marketing. There always seem to be the point made, and again it was made in today’s lecture, to invite them out for coffee and have a chat. But I don’t drink coffee!

https://i1.wp.com/www.modernantiaging.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/Cardiologist-in-Detroit.jpg Ewww

I can’t stand the stuff and to this day I’ve never be able to finish a cup of coffee. I’ve grown up in a household where every morning I watch the rest of my family sip on their liquid tar before they start the day but it just isn’t for me. So this leaves me in an interesting position; how do I organise a meet up with an intellectual in the marketing world…

  1. Invite them out for a hot chocolate

Pros:

  • It’s still a hot a liquid
  • Costs about the same
  • It’s chocolate!

Cons:

  • Yeah, but who drinks hot chocolate these days
  • Looks more like I’m asking for a date than an intellectual catch up
  • Too hot for summer

Rating: 3/5

  1. Take them to the movies

Pros:

  • Everybody loves the movies!

Cons:

  • Again, looks like a date

Rating: 2/5

3. Go for a jog

Pros:

  • Makes me look active (may as well lie early on)
  • Makes me seem like a real go getter

Cons:

  • Kind of hard to talk while running
  • Nobody likes running

Rating: 1/5

  1. Take them out for lunch

Pros:

  • Nobody turns down a free meal
  • Plenty of opportunity to chat

Cons:

  • Doubt they’ll have the time
  • I can barely afford to pay for my own lunch as is

Rating: 3/5

  1. Just suck it up and get a coffee

Pros:

  • At least I’ll seem normal
  • Who knows maybe I’ll learn to enjoy it (not likely)
  • I can always just tip it out when they’re not looking

Cons:

  • Would feel like a defeat
  • Coffee

Rating: 4/5 (best option)

Well, by the looks of it, I’m just gonna have to be a fake coffee drinker if I’m going to make it in this marketing world…

...if I have to

Anybody else out there a non-coffee drinker?  Got any other not so far-fetched tips on how to organise a meet up? Let me know below…

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Experiment Results: Just how far can you segment a Facebook ad?

*This is the result section of an experiment I was conducting, seeing if it’s possible to target a Facebook ad to just one person. Information about the experiment can be found here and a further update here*

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So the time has come and gone for my target to see their specified ad and unfortunately it has been unsuccessful. I can now reveal that the ad was a birthday message for a friend of mine, Kassy, who lives in New York (I gave the impression that it was for a male in my original post but again this was to make it less evident to who it really was). Due to the obvious logistical issue of actually seeing her on the day I thought the use of this ad might be a nice quirky way of saying happy birthday. The ad consisted of a ‘happy birthday message,’ a photo of the two of us and it linked to a short happy birthday song on Youtube.

I’ve since talked to my friend and explained what I was attempting to achieve and we’ve worked out why it failed. Naturally because it was her birthday she was busy celebrating and on the move for the duration of the ad (I set it for 3 days, one either side of the actual day). This meant that she wasn’t able to check her Facebook account on her computer and thus never had the opportunity to see the ad. She liked the idea of the message though and wants to see the ad, so I’ve decided to extend the campaign in hopes that it will appear for her to see. To keep the experiment side of it alive I’ve noted when I restarted the campaign and can therefore have an understanding of how long it actually takes for the ad to be spotted. This should give a better understanding of whether it’s a viable reality to successfully target one person with a Facebook ad.

I know it was a long shot trying this experiment but I was rather hopeful it would succeed.  The ad did in fact have some impressions, so it was seen by some random Facebook users but unfortunately not the my desired target audience.  Now that I know why it failed in this instance I’m keen to see how long it may actually take for the ad to be seen or if the idea’s a complete bust. I’m also contemplating trying the ad out on some other friends to see if there is any potential for the idea to create personally targeted ads, something I think could be quite a fun and interesting way to say happy birthday.

So what do you think? Disappointed it was unsuccessful? Not surprised it didn’t work with all the variables being present? Maybe even eager to try it out yourself? Let me know in the comments below…

The Positive Effects Of A Good Promotional Video

In the world of promoting electronic music festivals nothing works better than the promotional video. Encapsulating the hard-hitting sounds and joyous faces in the crowds these videos are the forefront or festival promotion, and no festival does it better than Tomorrowland. Taking place over three days in the small Belgian town of Boom, Tomorrowland is as famous for its “aftermovie” promotional videos as for the festival itself. Its 13:48 minute recap video of the 2011 festival has received over 50 millions views and been shared and blogged countless times over the net. The video’s success and fame had such a positive effect on the festival that when 2012 ticket sales came around the demand was unprecedented. Its 180,000 tickets sold out in mere minutes with countless punters missing out on achieving access to the Mecca of dance music events.

2011 Official Tomorrowland Aftermovie

And now the hugely anticipated 2012 aftermovie has landed. Increasing the length to a more rounded 20 minutes and with the help of local Belgian Djing brothers Dimitri Vegas and Like Mike producing the soundtrack the video has lived up to expectations. Released just last week the Youtube video is already sitting on an healthy 10 millions views and looks more than likely to surpass its yesteryear counterpart. With the size of the demand for this event in no way possible being met by the available supply, revellers (including myself) turn to these videos to find our own connection with the world’s greatest music festival.

2012’s turn

Tomorrowland just goes so far and above the average two to five minute festival promotional video.  With its unbelievable production value and encapsulating soundtrack it has paved wonders for the festival and its brand reputation. In an extremely saturated and competitive European market of dance music events, Tomorrowland has expertly utilised the social media tool of Youtube to build a reputation and fan base that cannot be matched, or even fully catered for.

So what do you think? Do these videos make you wish you could head to Tomorrowland or are they just another promo video in your eyes? Has your view of the festival changed, or for those who haven’t heard of it, formed from these videos? And, to make me seriously jealous, has anyone ever made the journey to Tomorrowland? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments…

Experiment update: Just how far can you segment a Facebook ad?

*This is an update to my earlier post where I stated I was planning on creating an ad so segmented that I could make sure it hit one certain person*

So I’ve now created the ad and waiting on my chosen specified time frame to see if it’ll hit my desired target.  As stated earlier I’m not giving away exactly who the person is yet in fear they may read this blog and ruin the surprise.  I initially had problems creating the ad as, ironically, it was my ad-blocking ad-on as blogged about earlier that was preventing me from creating the ad on Facebook.  After a quick browser switch I was able to create the ad and set the desired date (it’s within the next two weeks).  Interestingly when segmenting the ad the Faebook counter which determines how many potential impressions the ad can make reaches a low of 20 in which it will not decrease despite further segmenting efforts.  I’m confident my desired target audience (one person) sits within this 20 and so will hopefully be seen by them (and maybe a few other surprised users).

Anyhow, just letting those who are following this experiment that ad is set in place and awaiting its D-Day.  Wish me luck!

The Unseen Effects Of Ad-blocking On Websites

The use of ad-blocking or ad-filtering is becoming far more common for web users and brings with it a real danger to paid search marketing. Essentially ad-blocking ad-ons (that’s a tongue twister), which are free and easy to download for all major web browsers prevent ads of all types (video, text, interactive) from being viewed by the user. I downloaded the Firefox ad-on at the start of the year and couldn’t believe I didn’t do it earlier. No ads on google searches, no annoying pop-ups when downloading music and most noticeably no Youtube ads whilst your video loads; a true utopia it seemed.

 

 

So what effect does using this feature have on the online world. Straight off the bat all PPC (pay per click) and PPV (pay per view) advertising is essentially killed because without the ad being viewed there’s no way you can click or view it. Who cares, you say? What does it matter if the advertising company doesn’t get their ad view to you? Well the real damage of this actually hits the websites we use and love. Most websites, especially those with free content, gain their main source of revenue from advertising. So blocking these ads you are essentially blocking your favourite website from being paid. This can result in lesser quality content and site performance as corners need to be cut to salvage the site. Ken Fisher of Arstechnica, describes it as the equivalent of eating a meal at a restaurant and not paying, you’re using their facilities but giving nothing in return. It seems this utopia comes at price after all.

 

 

It leaves me and I’m sure others in an awkward position. On the one hand the feature of no ads is extremely beneficial and time saving however knowing I’m damaging favoured websites by not doing something as simple as ignoring ads also makes me uneasy…

 

What do you think? Are you a proud ad blocker? Were you aware of the harm ad-blocking can cause to websites? Do the benefits outweigh the costs? Let me know in the comments…

Time for an experiment: Just how far can you segment a Facebook ad?

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Today’s exploration of Facebook’s ad creating program got me thinking, is it possible to segment a target audience so much that you are left with only one Facebook user in your sights?  I know in the grand scheme of marketing this may seem nonsensical but I think the potential to target one person with a personalised ‘ad’ on their Facebook homepage could be quite an entertaining gimmick.  For this experiment I’m going to select a certain event that is coming up in a friend’s life (deliberately keeping this description vague in the unlikely event he reads my blog and thus ruins the surprise) and create a personalised congratulatory ‘ad’ to appear on his homepage.  I’m still not exactly sure what the ad will be but I’m planning on putting some personal aspects in there to make it undeniable that it’s for him.

 

I’ll be updating the progress of this experiment as my ad takes shape and as we approach the day of the event (again keeping this deliberately vague) and hopefully see the success of a one person ad…wish me luck!

Will Facebook ever die?

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We all use it and for some it’s a way of life, but will the social juggernaut that is Facebook ever die?  A quick google search brought up some interesting theories about what will cause the demise of Facebook and send it the way of the now cringe worthy Myspace.  Some say it’s over cluttered, others that it’s lost it’s personal touch (seriously how many invites do you get that you actually care about or even know who the person is who’s sent it), some just simply believe something bigger and better, yet to be created, space will eventually take over.  Even Wags put forward the idea that by the next Olympic Games there’ll be a new Twitter and Facebook that we are all using and that those two will just seem like old news. I however remain a little more sceptical about the seemingly eminent demise of Facebook, the idea that something eventually has to take over. 

 

 

I believe that Zuckerberg’s brain child simply has too many bases covered to ever really become redundant or surpassed.  It’s social competitors can never gain enough moment to truly compete with it’s reach (Google+ tried to go head to head and failed) or if they do find a niche market Facebook has an unrelenting to ability to then cater for it, or simply buy the service (looking at you Instagram).  Everything seems to be linked back to Facebook, it’s essentially the social media home base for people.  I like to think of the other social sources as trial grounds before they are posted on the hub that is Facebook.  I follow most of my friends on Twitter and Instagram and it’s funny to see how a ‘successful’ post (one that gets plenty of hearts or retweets) will then, and only then, be moved across and essentially reposted or uploaded to Facebook.  It’s as if once the post gets approval on a minor platform it can then be appear on their true social display that is Facebook.  Even now with the addition of songs listened to on Soundcloud appearing on one’s timeline the same thing is happening.  I had one friend explain to me how he’ll only post the song he listened to on Soundcloud after he’s listened to and made sure it’s ‘worthy’…and don’t even think that he’ll post that he’s listened to a mainstream song (pivotal to keep up the indie appearance).  The website simply has a too strong a hold on it’s community and doesn’t seem to be weakening, despite knowing people who’ve tried I’m yet to see someone successfully delete their Facebook and remain offline (and even if they did, how would we know if they don’t post about it?)

 

 

Sure one day Facebook may become non-existent but I think it will be due to a whole technological advancement not simply being overpassed by a competitor, it just seems to have too strong a hold on us.  So what do you think, is Facebook going to die soon and I’m delirious?  What do you think is going to take it over? Or for a simple answer…do you think you could easily delete your Facebook account right now?