Since Mariano made it official, I'm proud to say that I'll be presenting at WordCamp Argentina in about a Week (November 8th).
I want to make something different from the usual keynote, but the lack of time might prevent me to go all above and beyond as I would like.
Post disponible en español en redtácora.
Almost a week has passed since WeMedia Buenos Aires concluded. I was fortunate enough to attend and other attendees were unfortunate enough to be forced to listen to me.The audience was somewhat challenging, not because they booed at me (they were respectful enough not to!) but because I had to keep the pitch very high-level, thus somewhat boring those initiated in the dark arts of social media.
Since I believe this things take a while to get digested (and my brain is taking longer than usual times to digest) an unordered list of thoughts follows.
- Mainstream Media (is there such a thing) does not get it. Gross tonnage is no longer a valid argument to state that one "rocks" or "sucks". The overall ignorance of traditional journalists with regards to Social Media was put to evidence thanks to Mariano's intervention.
- Video is going to keep migrating from TV to Internet. This is going to take a while. TV will become an "online thing" in advanced countries in the next 15 years or so.
- Most of the action takes place at coffee breaks and lunch breaks. I guess the idea of un-conferences is to try to replicate that. I had a great time chatting people like Mariano, Ismael, Ivan, John, Nicolás and others (too many to link!).
- I like presenting. I like it a little bit more every time I do it. One day I might even get moderately acceptable at it.
- I got a ton of ideas from the BBC's presentation. And I mean real-life marketing ideas.
- Inspiration comes from the oddest places.
- Timing was too strict in some senses and too loose on some others. Some speakers could of got to the point in half the time. Others I would of listened to for hours.
I'll resume normal blogging habits now.
Final part of Today.
Jorge Gobbi, Editor Social Voices.
Social Voices does not cover Europe and the US because they have enough traditional media coverage. Social Voices is a global startup. He's talking about "voices without votes" what the rest of the world thinks about the US election. He's the only Argentine writter. The idea is not to yield their own oppinions but rather to leverage bloggers's points of view.
"Rising Voices" gives grants to develop blogs for those people who don't have access to the internet or blogs. OLPC is huge in Uruguay.
They also try to help bloggers who suffer censorship.
Reuters invests in Social Voices. NYT republished the feed about South Osetia.
Juán Cruz Mones Cazón, idealistas.org
60K daily uique visitors, 500k registered users, 80k organizations.
"Can Internet change the world?" "No, people can, using Internet".
Gives examples of how idealistas.org helps to connect different organizations. "That is what idealistas is all about".
Things are free because people believe that once you start charging for a service another company / guy will come and do it for free.
The free business model is a challenge even for organizations such as Idealistas.
Paulien Osse - Wage indicator foundation.
She's coming to the public asking what people earn. Of course people are reluctant to answer.
"Essentially this is what we do, we ask people how much they make, but on the internet". They are going to display a movie.
This is fun for economists. Just to compare the wages of exactly the same job in different countries. It is essential to know if you know if you're paid propperly.
Knowledge sharing for collective inteligence.
The question on how they validate the date, make sure people are not telling lies when completing their wage information. Paulien says there is only a small percentage are not truthful about their sallary.
Steve Herrmann, Editor, BBC.
When thre was an earthquake in India the BBC got tons of messages of people trying to tell each other they were ok, if they knew something about missing people and other "social" requirements.
On Zimbawe they asked the population to SMS the BBC to let them know what was going on during polling. BBC was banned from the country at the time. People reported all kinds of abuses and other atrocities.
Burma: BBC's reporter couldn't move freely through the country. They contacted the local population to get updates on what was happening.
The Burma story didn't end up very well. They stopped getting messages and emails. The burmanise government shut down the ISP's, BBC was left out of sources.
China Earthquake. They are mentioning the twitter feed. Also Chinese bloggers. They also monitored what was the Chinese media said about the torch relay protests in Europe and the US.
More examples about blogging from countries that are hard for the BBC to get into (Saudi Arabia, Cuba).
They tried an experiment called "Laptop link-ups". Sent people with Notebooks to remote places so people could tell their stories. (Brilliant!!).
In the UK they have a project for schools where they send a journalist to let kids know what journalism is about. They create news from this schools and then publish it on the BBC. This program has cought up in other countries and regions as well.
BBC uses blogs as a publishing platform for their star journalists (the screenshot is from Peston's Picks, title: "We own the banks").
They use an interactive map about the general mood around the financial crises where people pinned thier economical problems (unapyable mortages, rising food prices, etc).
To exmplain globalization BBC painted a crate and send it all over the world, then they encouraged readers to ry to spot it at ports and boats, take pictures at it and send them back to the BBC. Amazing shots.
And thus the day ends... sort off. Pictures coming soon.
I've skipped blogging and tweeting an entire track, since I just came down the stage mysel. Went to have lunch and now I'm reporting again. (Does that make me a journalist?)
What the readership will most regret is that I've skiped Josh Cohen's Keynote. I regret it myself.
Officenet - Leonardo Piccioli;
THere will be no secrets in the future. "That my competition learns about stuff we're doing is a risk I'm willing to assume".
"I talk with everyone" -> I talk with customer, I talk with unions, I talk with government.
Juan Carlos Lucas.
1. Amoebas are easy to predict.
2. Human Beings are harder to predict than Amoebas.
3. Most managers don't know #2.
The way management is done today is not going to work for much longer.
There is a shift in paradigm.
Twitter as an example of this change. Juan Carlos asked the question of what twitter was publicly made on twitter, this yielded "collective intelligence" (note: I need to further think whether I believe in the concept of collective intelligence or not)
Leaders as strategic coaches.
"What do we have to learn as Managers"
1. We need to be openminded and flexible observers.
2. We need to constantly learn.
3. We need to motivate conversations that add values. (watch out not to confuse tool with conversation)
4. We need to systematically add value. We need to embrace the new before it is even perfected.
5. We need to be authentic collaborators. Lies are no longer good for business and they will be even less so.
"Instead of looking for answers we should be looking for new questions".
Ernesto Van Pebrogh.
Chart from Forrester that shows internet users behavior. People over 27 years are considered "innactive" because they download instead of uploading.
Youngsters will beb in positions of power within companies in the next 10 years. This "Digital Natives" do "Social Homeworking".
Facebook has about as much population as Japan. 50% of Brazilians will have access to internet. 30 Million Brazilians use Orkut weekly.
Web 2.0 is not a technological revolution, it is a philosophical shift.
We need a new work ethic.
Managers need to think how to make their employees happy so they become marketers as well.
That companies block access to 2.0 applications makes no sense.
Luis Alberto Quevedo. Alejandro Prince. Alejandro Piscitelli.
The invention of writing changed all the social interactions. Probably the first texts were love poems and contracts. There was a technological revolution.
Invention of press. Then the concept of "nation" develops. Today we live in a massive herd of 7 billion people.
Internet changes yet again the way information flows. Yet this is not "another leap" it is a big leap, we're going through a major social change.
The digital breach does not exist, the breach is social and economic. At least 60% of the world's population is not in a good jape to make the next social revolution (in the sense of things changing).
New York is the most connected and social media prone city in the world. NY Times only has 0,7% of outgoing links. This is their doom. This is their breach with the rest of the social media world.
"The best writting happening right now is stuff written for TV". TV before was all redundant. TV today is more dense in terms of narrative.
Rupture between profesionals and amateurs (proams).
The 2300 billion clicks on google are the "spirit of today's world".
"hat are the consecuences: "ways to know what we are loosing".
We are still living with 19th and 20th century media. TV still plays a major role on today's life.
For mass media their business is not "to share" it is to amass consumers. This clearly oposes the 2.0 model.
One more block left. Which means one more post left today.
Mariano Amartino is moderating a table on Blogs.
Leandro Zanoni is presenting.
Blogs. over 100 million, 380K in Argentina. Social Networks; MySpace 220 Mill. users, facebook 90 million. Thousands of social networs.
User is the key player. Prosumer, simple and dynamic, services. FREE. (My note: free for SOME...)
Bloggers are not pro guys. Leandro wonders about what happens with new journalists who won't depend on mass media.
Ernesto Tenembaum takes the stand.
"I've worked on everything, TV, Radio, print, now I have a blog and I'm modern" (I love this guy's soft irony).
The Medium does not matter. "When we founded "XXIII" we looked at circulation, on TV we are pending on ratings, on blogs it is the same, we're pending on clicks and visits".
Everybody is always looking at what catches the attention.
"Most of what's blogged is not journalism, it is a form of comunication".
I'm interested in blogs as a way of democratizing information.
"It is the same old story, on a news paper, on a blog, on TV, it is just telling stories".
"I'm a big Paul Krugman fan."
"There's a lot of Catharsis going on on Blogs".
Daniel Fernández Canedo takes the stand.
News must be interesting to get readership. Clarin Blogs opens the newspaper to blogers. 12K blogs opened so far, in comparison "El Pais" from Spain only has 10K.
What is going to change is the business model.
We have changed our reading habits, we read less extensively and less profoundly.
Journalist have no option but to become better journalists.
iFocos introduction, Andrew Nachison.
"WeMedia" is as much about "we" as it is about "media". Some people think WeMedia is about blogging, this is not exactly the case, it is about people publishing. We're not riding towards utopia, trust is in flux. Who we trust and how to get the information that we trust is at stake.
We share information with those who we know and have choices about who we trust and who we get information from.
The course of our society can be changed through media which is now in everybody's hands.
Media (all types) has not saved the day so far.
Eduardo Hauser - Daily Me
Daily Me is a News personalizer.
1. Fragmentation. Content is no longer in hands of a few. Content publishers (such as music indostry) freaked out. The real change is that things have shift from the real world to the digital and have become more fragmented, smaller units.
2. Timeless. TiVo as an example. Eduardo says he only watches political debates and sports live, everything else goes through TiVo. TV ad model has changed. There is a new format of TV spots that lasts 3 minutes. Only the way we do things changes, not the actual things we do.
3. Payment methods. We spend less money more times.
4. User participation. The first change newspapers did was to allow comments. Second largest tendency is twitter.
5. Distributed Experience. information flows around no matter what the medium. Thank RSS for that.
6. Gadgets got better. 19 million blackberry accounts. 150 iphones / ipods available. Kindle figures not available. Kindle makes RSS feeds available, one pays .99 for access and convenience, not for the content.
Confusion all around.
Analysis Paralisis (LOLCat as an example)
New aliances, NBC & Microsoft. New york Times and LinkedIn. Infamous union between Time Warner and AOL, they decided to join forces for all the wrong reasons.
Viral distribution. Many companies (Such as MySpace or Facebook) never run any sort of publicity.
13 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube every single minute.
Guy Kawasaki's Twitter Feed used as an example of the massive reach. Startups are cheap, escalating is expensive.
Audience question: 3 minute TV ads.
First Tivo Remote skipped 30 seconds, thus oing over ads. Creatives created ads that are not disruptive.
I had roughly about a week and a half to mourn the ending of Lenovo's Olympic web marketing project. I am now already deep beneath water once again.
In case you haven't noticed Lenovo Blogs launched "Roaring Mouse", a web log dedicated to SMB. I think there is huge potential for a market niche that has all sorts of different needs, issues and approaches to problems. I'm certain Brandon Hoe, our ThinkPad SL brand manager will do a terrific job building a community and helping the SMB market.
But that is not what is keeping me busy. As usual not much can be said at this moment, but I'm amidst the early stages of a very promising project.
Warning! Massive post.
As the events that happened between August 8 and August 24 start to slip to memory-land I thought it would be nice to do a recap of what we did last summer. Hope you enjoy it, or that you live long enough to read it thoroughly.
The right move at the right moment.
Besides what our marketing statements said (that this were the first Games where athletes were allowed to blog) there are several other reasons why this made sense.
First and foremost: Amateurism. Yeah, I know, most of this guys aren't exactly amateurs in the full sense of the word, but you get the point. The same program applied to, say, the Football (soccer) world cup, wouldn't of worked as well as it did for the Olympics. Most athletes at an Olympiad are not celebrities. They might have a small degree of recognition, but the general public does not know them.
That radically changes during the Games. The public eye is in search of these people, hungry for news and stories. That is where we came in, providing content straight from the source.
The time zone difference also played a big part. Most of the action happened while the western hemisphere was sleeping or at work. This made the internet a key player.
The Right Mix.
Ogilvy 360 performed wonderfully during the recruitment phase. Voices of the Olympic Games ended up hosting 101 athlete blogs, representing 31 sports and 25 countries. Although this is a minimal sample of what goes on during the games it was, in my humble opinion, a very nice mix that portrayed their fellow athletes quite well.
Since the program was about hearing the Voices of this guys, recruitment was the key element.
I must admit that the idea of opening up and putting lenovo's brand behind people we didn't know raised some eyebrows here and there.
Now that the thing is over I'm delighted to say that what this athletes wrote about, the way they shared the good the bad and the ugly, the sheer openness and honesty did not cease to amaze me every single day during those fantastic two weeks.
They were sports heroes, now they became my personal marketing heroes.
One Idea. Endless access points.
The idea itself was quite simple: enabling athlete blogging. After getting the right mix of athletes we needed to ensure that their words traveled far and quick.
The site and the way it was thought was just a channel, a place where feeds came in and went out to the various distribution services that orbited around the program. Simply put: athlete posts feeds were aggregated at the voices site and then redistributed as aggregated RSS feeds that powered Facebook Apps, Mobile Phone devices and anything anyone wanted to do with the outcome.
All of that was enabled with the help of Yahoo Pipes and quite a bit of programming on the Voices site.
Too much happened over the past 9 months. Tons of ideas, reduced turnaround times, pressure, just to name a few. Here's the list of things I've learnt:
- Ideas will flow like rivers, it is execution that matters
- One must learn to focus and discard things quickly
- Anything can be done
- Outsourced stuff does not always work as it should
- Distributed content is the future
- Days can span longer than 24 hours. They can also last a lot less.
- I love chaos. I might rant, but I'd rather be underwater and crazy than doing business as usual.
- I am fortunate to work where I do and, particularly with the people I work with.
I know I left a ton of stuff out, maybe for another post. (Not likely to happen)
(Disclaimer: I have not posted results, targets adn the like because I'm sure David is going to take care of that).
Beijing 2008 Summer Olympic Games are approaching at a fast pace. Time is not a constant. Although days always last 24 hours (or 1440 minutes or 86400 seconds) the perception of time gets skewed by the events we live.
I have been working with my main focus put on Olympic Web Marketing for the past 9 months. That is a long time. Over this period of time Lenovo has made 2 major refreshes to its product line, launched IdeaPads and we made quite a buzz around the X300. That should put a little perspective on the crazy times Web Marketing for a major PC company imposes.
Over all of this time I was able to work with various companies (google, Ogilvy, Citizen Sports, to name a few), joyfully skipping from one project to the other. It's been some crazy and fun times.
Now that we've reached the build-up momentum leading to the opening ceremonies we're focused on trying to get the most of what we've done. I know I'll probably forget about sleeping for the next two weeks or so, and the strange thing is, I'm sort of looking forward to it.
Although it has been fun I'm already looking forward applying some of the knowledge learnt to our longer term programs in Social Media Marketing. But that, as they say, is a matter for a different post.
As part of the buzz generated by the (should I say Official?) release of the "Voices of the Olympic Games" site there was a certain post that caught my eye as well as the attention of others at Lenovo, Ogilvy and Intel.
That single statement should be enough to corroborate the validity of the article I'm talking about: Why the Social Media World NEEDS to Understand SEO, by Jennifer Laycock (Editor of the Search Engine Guide).
Jennifer basically tears the "Voices" site apart from a SEO perspective. And that is a good thing. We've learnt some things about it, made some changes and hopefully have created a better user experience thanks to that.
I'll do an overview of things that we changed and arguments for the things that we have not taking into account.
True social content that allows people to interact around current events and hot topics is killer in terms of traffic. There's a reason for that...it's because good social media initiatives capture people at their passion points and gather them together. For that, I say kudos to the team at Ogilvy who dreamed this idea up.
Slight correction here: Lenovo's David Churbuck dreamed the idea.
True. And I almost feel ashamed by this. I have been a long time critic of Flash for this same reason (and others). That being said I must admit I never had SEO in my mind while desiging and developing the site. I think the contributors page does a nice job in terms of helping people find athletes. The usage of the filters alows to find relevan athlete(s) by sport, nationality and the language they blog at.
The Lenovo site is using an Ajax driven pop up box to display the content from each of their bloggers. That means you don't get a unique page and a unique URL related to each entry, which means bloggers cannot link to a post on the Lenovo site.
This was a homerun. And we have corrected this. In several ways. We give users the possibility to see the standalone post (example) and provide a permalink to the popup in the main page as well (example II).
We have also simplified opening the original posts directly from the "Voices" site, something that has a lot to do with the vision we had for this.
Thus I get to a point in this post where I think I should explain the vision around the site, and some of the choices we did. After reading this pragraph:
When I first heard about the Lenovo Summer Games site, I thought they had gathered together bloggers to build a giant group blog. I imagined a hundred voices coming together in a collective environment and I imagined the number of comments, trackbacks and social bookmarking submissions that would be generated. I pictured a comprehensive blog roll that would link me to other Olympic related blogs and a resource area that compiled the latest Olympic news and links to the official Olympic sites of each country's team.
I knew I had to blog in response.
There are several reasons on why we didn't want to concentrate too much stuff (as in comments and hosting the bloggers ourselves) on our own site. First and foremost our goal is to "Connect Fans and athletes". And this is not just vane marketing talk. We mean it, and the site / idea / execution reflect just that.
"Voices of The Olympic Games" serves as an entry point for fans. They can look after athletes of their own country, of a sport they like or speaking in their language. We concentrate content fed by the Athlete's individual blogs, with the hope that those interested will go and comment directly to the athletes, not to us. We act as enablers, not as recipients in this case.
If that were not the case we would of taken an approach similar to what Jennifer imagined and would never provided things such as filtered feeds to which people interested in broader or narrower queries can subscribe to what they want.
There was also the notion that there is life after the games for this Athletes. We didn't want to be responsible of deleting the content they had generated after the buzz died out and the flame was put off in Beijing. We know this site won't live much longer after August (partly because Lenovo will no longer be a TOP sponsor anymore) but this athlete's blogs will most certainly continue to exist after that.
That means Lenovo's Voices of the Olympic Games site simply serves as a road map, not as a destination. When it comes to social media and search, companies benefit far more by creating a destination site that generously links out as a resource.
The first part is correct. As I have stated: we want to be a roadmap, the destination is the Athlete's sites and blogs.
As for companies benefiting far more by creating a destination, I don't think I entirely see eye-to-eye with that. The statement would hold true if we were in 2002, not today. The web has become a liquid and distributed place, I don't think much sites can be regarded as a "destination" anymore.
Because the site is set up this way, Lenovo loses the content AND shows me I don't need to visit their site to read the blog post. Instead, I can add the athlete's blog directly to my feed reader and by pass Lenovo completely.
No, you don't need to visit our site to read the blogs. But you can subscribe to more than one blog in a single feed, or just lurk around. And there will be some more content provided by us during the games. That being said this same approach is coherent with us "not being the destination".
The Lenovo Voices of the Olympics Games site has amazing potential. It's a great idea and I have enormous amounts of respect for the team at Ogilvy who put it together. Unfortunately, the campaign has fallen prey to one of the most common pitfalls of online campaigns. It was designed without search engines in mind.
Mea Culpa. Guilty as charged we did not design or think the site around SEO.
We will try to improve SEO for the sake of the users and fans and trying to make it easier for them to find and connect to athletes.
I want to personally thank Jennifer for her very well put and very concise post. As I commented when I first read it I think it is thanks to people like her that the Web improves.
We might not see eye-to-eye on every single point, but I think it is very important to listen to such authorized voices as well as taking the time to reply.
- All this and that
- Blog Design
- long term thinking
- Mountain Biking
- myself and I
- philosophical rant
- Servers and configs
- ThinkPad Tips
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