How much did you write this year? I bet it's a lot more than you think. My total word count comes to over a million. This was surprising to me -- wasn't technology like video conferencing and voice recognition supposed to diminish our dependence on the written word? It turns out that technology has made writing more essential than ever. Here's how I broke the million-word barrier in 2012:
Greetings from Middle Earth! That's where I live: New Zealand. Known for sheep and hobbits. Also inventing the jet boat (Hamilton), summiting Everest (Hillary), and splitting the atom (Rutherford). Not so much known for tech startups. Which is why it was so interesting to be visited by the Geeks on a Plane crew last week.
I have to be honest -- I've always disliked the concept of the consumer funnel. Speaking to consumers is more about a journey than it is about driving people into a funnel and weeding them out. If you need an analogy, try thinking of panning for gold.
I grew up with the simple value that you should leave a place in a better state than how you found it. That's the case whether it's a kitchen, a conference room, the ocean where I sail and fish for recreation, or our public Internet. As we close down 2012 and look to the new year and beyond, I can't help but think about the world we're leaving for our children: their "tomorrow." Are we leaving a better tomorrow for them? Right now, I don't think we are.
We live next door to Newtown, Conn., the small town where a horrible event unfolded last Friday. My oldest son was home sick from school that day, but his younger brother was at his elementary school. As I was working from home and preparing for a number of meetings, I received an alarming email from our school system. It said that they were monitoring the events at the Newtown school but that ours would not be "locked down."
"We want people to talk about us on social media." Well, of course you do. "We want to have a digital strategy for connecting with our community." Without a doubt. "We're doing a whole bunch of things in the real world, but we need to be on Facebook so we can go viral." Maybe -- or maybe not.
I'm not sure what your personal experience is like where you live on this small planet, but here in America, when you buy tea in a restaurant or caf, the most incredibly (bad) customer service occurs. When you order tea, you typically receive a cup (and saucer) of boiling water and (separately) a standard tea bag from a popular commercial brand such as Lipton. Your mission (should you choose to accept it) is to open the tea bag packaging and proceed to dip your teabag to your heart's content. For this manual labor, you are charged some kind of ridiculous ...
While drafting my article for this week, two things struck me as more than coincidental. First off, my article was being published on 12/12/12, which doesn't happen all the time. Second, we were about to begin the "Twelve Days Of Christmas."
A friend of mine announced last week on Facebook that his mother had passed away. Sad news. I Liked this status update because I was engaged with the content and wanted to respectfully acknowledge my interest. Within 48 hours his status update received 115 comments, though only three Likes (my own included). Was it wrong for me to Like this news?
Last year I went out on a limb here on MediaPost and made some predictions about media in 2012. Some have been highly accurate. Others have proved the maxim that predicting the future is a fool's errand.Here are a few that I got right: