• Eight Things Online Marketing Has In Common With Satan
    If you're reading this, it's probably because the headline above convinced you to click on a link or open an email. Now here's the catch: First, this article has nothing to do with Satan. Second, I didn't even write the headline myself. I used the totally awesome Linkbait Generator. (If you're seeking a chuckle and have a few minutes to burn on your summer vacation, I highly recommend it.) And there lies the point of this article: sensational linkbait.
  • Timesuck: The Battle For Our Leisure Time (And Money)
    Many folks in the media industry look at Facebook and think that they are only seeing a short-lived, youth-based social communications phenomenon -- maybe the CB radio of the 21st Century -- not a revolution in the entertainment industry. They are wrong. I believe that Facebook and other social Web services are going to dramatically change the landscape -- and economics -- of the media and entertainment industries. Here's why:
  • Avoiding The Place Where Good Ideas Go To Die
    The phrases "process paralysis" and "death by committee" are universally known and equally frustrating to me, because I've personally witnessed too many good ideas go into a meeting and never come out. I'm certainly a person who relies on structure, but I also know when a good idea steps up and smacks you in the face, you need to move quickly. You need to make decisions and you need to take a shot. As Wayne Gretzky once famously said, "You miss 100% of the shots you don't take." Truer words were never uttered in any line of work.
  • More On Buying Banners = Burning Money: The Guarantee
    My column two weeks ago, "Buying Banners = Burning Money," has generated a lot of conversations, both public and private. Most people would concede that "reach" without impact is not truly reach, but rather defend the impact of impressions. As I said two weeks ago, some impressions are valuable, but most are not, and it's in the ability to tell the difference where the problem lies.
  • The Pitfalls of Ad Hoc Digital
    When it comes to digital, there's an unfortunate conversation that still goes on among marketing folk: one that sounds like a conversation on integrating digital, but really plays more like rattling off a list of individual online initiatives. It's effectively a to-do list: "We'll do X, then we'll do Y, then we'll do Z." It lacks a strategic framework and doesn't tap the full power of digital options. And such an ad hoc or haphazard approach seeds its own problems down the road.
  • Registering The Internet Domain Names Of Your Kids
    Who owns the Web site address www.[your child's first and last name].com? Hopefully you do!

    Internet domain names are hugely important in establishing identity and visibility on the Web -- not only for brands, but for people. That's why I registered my own name several years ago.

  • Foursquare: The Radio Shack Battery Card On Steroids?
    I've always believed that the Radio Shack battery card was one of the great retail marketing innovations all time. For those who don't remember, Radio Shack used to give you a card to bring into the store each month to get a free store-brand battery. When you came in, they punched the corresponding month on the card, gave you your battery and, certainly in my case, won a lot of loyalty -- and usually some impulse purchasing. For years, I've wondered why Radio Shack or other ecommerce vendors haven't created online-enabled versions of the "battery card." Well, I have finally ...
  • The Ego-Driven Internet
    Is it just me -- or are the majority of innovations in this current phase of the Web all about ego?

    Checking in, tweeting, posting your status, and sharing your activities with friends are a collection of very ego-driven experiences. In some cases you may be sharing information that others will find relevant, but sharing what you're thinking at that very moment or what bar you just popped into is rarely of value. I can't throw stones, since I do just as much of this as the next guy, but what's really the value here -- and how can ...

  • The Day The News Dies
    The future of news is getting bleaker and bleaker. If something doesn't change soon, we may soon see a day when real news journalism dies. I am not talking about the media companies that own today's newspapers and television stations, although they are obviously facing their own challenges, I am talking about the news that is a product of professional journalism.
  • Groupon Is Nice -- But When It Comes To Group Buying, Costco Is King
    I recently attended a great technology event about monetizing the location-based Web. Not surprisingly, group-buying services were a hot topic. Groupon, a deal-of-the-day Web site, is on a tear, as evidenced by rapid U.S. expansion and recent fund-raising that values the start-up at over $1 billion. It's an exciting story, but group buying wasn't invented yesterday. While unsexy, dorky and perhaps wreaking of suburban tendencies, my favorite group-buying phenomenon is far larger and more impactful. It's called Costco.
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