Tag Archives: networking

MCL2: MediaCampLondon #2

I’m of to the Social Media Mafia MCL2 on Saturday, you coming?

If you are, please do make sure you introduce yourself to me, this is how I look (I’m in the middle):

chris

Yes, I’ll probably be surrounded by nurses just like this too.

The “learning-workshop” (mediacamp) is at 297 Kingsland Rd, Hackney, London E8, UK (full-disclosure: my clients).

More MCL2 text here.

Oh and grab my moby number from the top there and SMS me, might be handy on the day/eve, if you get lost in a bar somewhere.

I Don’t Miss Twitter

Sometimes I find myself taking long breaks from twitter which I must say I thoroughly enjoy. I’m one of those guys that avoids institutionalisation at all costs, any time a situation becomes repetitive I seem to find little interest in the culture.

I use the phrase institutionalisation purposefully because like many work-place cultures identical practices creep in, normalities develop and before long you can find yourself smack bang in the middle of complacency.

I don’t think I’ll be permanently out of the scene, I have too many great friends that love the world of twittington, though I’m sure I’ll continue taking extended breaks. I’ll also not be making any silly big statements of “hey that’s it I deleted my twitter account”, hmm although …

Anyway there we go that’s on my mind today.

Do you find you have feelings like this, do you get bored with spaces and cultures, what do you do to get the funk out?

Social Media In Business

Social Media in Business the one day conference is just a mere three weeks away.

I’m really looking forward to this one on a few levels.

1. it is a conference which has a star-studded line-up of speakers who are at the coal-face of social media who will share their case-studies and gems of information.
2. it has attendees whom are new to social media who are having conversations along the lines of “we need to get into youtube” or “what’s happening in facebook”. i.e people not in the echo chamber. This is a very good thing!
3. the networking potential of this conference is significant where new relationships will be forged and additional ideas and strategies formed.
4. top tucker for lunch (it’s a very swanky hotel, what can I say)
5. I get to wear my best suit and polished shoes (no really I dig that)

So it seems many levels I’m interested in here.

Pop over and register your ticket and let’s meet up.

Social Media in Business Conference

UPDATE: This has been postponed to 2009

How To Communicate


This is Brett Hurt Founder and CEO of Bazaarvoice whom I met today at Internet World.

Now the interesting thing I thought about Brett is that he knows how to make friends, engage with people, seemed to be open minded, and generally enjoys interaction with new people, he doesn’t foolishly judge too quickly, which always gets my interest every time.

To give you an opposite example.

The first exhibitor I walked up to at IW today was an older gentlemen representing a company concerned with CRM, you know, management of customer relationships (cough cough), and as it happens I have had CRM on my mind for a project recently. So picture this, I had a Nikon around my neck, was wearing torn jeans, a t-shirt, slightly unshaven look, and my usual blue glasses, a normal day for me then, (as you can see here) nice eh?.

So, as I say hello to this grumpy old guy, first thing he does is starts to look me up and down and begins asking me questions to validate myself (no shit),

  • HIM: “how many employees do you represent then”

  • ME: “I’m a web strategist, one of my clients has global representation”
  • HIM: “show me a card then”

blah blah (insert longer story here), really boring me already dude.

So it got to the stage where I couldn’t give a fuck how good his software may have been, the mere fact he made a judgement call on my appearance along with his decision to try and assert me to validate myself to him (like that’s going work), was enough for me to just politely fuck-off in the other direction.

Now, moving on to Brett.

Brett on the other hand, you see, took an interest in a potential conversation with me and found out that I might post some pictures of the IW event onto Flick, the fact that hey this might be a really good moment for a Blog post to come from it, a moment captured where people interact with good outcomes, a memorable exchange.

Brett pulls his shirt open revealing a green t-shirt and says “put Bazaarvoice loves osborne” on it. I have no idea what that means, but it is of little significance. It’s a message, it’s a reach, it’s an enagagement to someone, a client, a prospect who knows?

Job done for me, I couldn’t refuse this attitude, it’s perfect, and goes to show that if you think you are above your station (the first guy) you might need a reality check. The internet is not all about suites and boots.

Go visit BazaarVoice.

New Business Cards

I got a mass-who-sive box through the mail today from CJ containing my new uber-minimalist business/networking cards, matching the lime theme on this ‘ear’ blog. I can’t even remember how many I actually ordered, but the box is GIGANTIO and rammed with even smaller little plastic cases with a gazillion cards in, I like it, makes me feel important!

As you can see we are sporting a very stylish minimalist embossed concept on the front, and a delightful twirl of the card will reveal some further details about moi, including me email addy and “dog n bone number”.

I also love the way the cards have a few lines on the reverse, for making some notes, like an appointment, a web page, another phone number, another contact etc.

I think that’s part of it you know, part of why I love these new cards. I love the space on the back that enables me, or anyone else, to write things about our delightful moment of interaction, almost like a node of some kind, a contact for other people, pretty smashing stuff! I’ve used any old scrap of paper in the passed, whatever was laying around, but this is far better.


The cards were not the cheapest in town, I mean who do you think you are dealing with here? No, no, not cheap but worth every penny to me for giving CJ the power to organise it all for me, and get them churned out. You should go speak with her if you want it all taken care of yourself, she will work with you until you are totally happy and then some.

Loose The Comment Fear

Firstly, thank YOU so much for helping me out with a previous blog entitled “What stops you from making a comment on a blog”.

Having put out a call to action to you I was completely humbled, by the response and thoughtful help that came in. YOU really did help me draw some conclusions and make some important summaries, which I will now share with you.

The deliciousness woven into a lot of the comment thread was from first-time posters, people who had not made a comment before but somehow felt a need to respond and desired to reach-out, (this is the buzz phrase), and make a connection,(again a buzz word).

Reaching Out

I think in this world of social media and instant connectivity “reaching-out” is an apt phrase which does convey a message of action, a premise of holding your arms out, of opening your book to let everyone have a read. Reaching out is exactly what a blog post should do, if you do indeed desire to have feedback and converse with your readers.

Make a Connection

Now this is the key, I have come to the conclusion with your very meaningful posts that making an emotional connection is the door opener. We are emotive beings, we need emotion and feelings continuously and mostly it is important we can connect on an emotional level, blogs are perfect tools for this.

Just Because

Having considered the feedback and mulled it around in my mind for a week or more I am absolutely convinced there is more goodness in making at least a small connection (yes how ever small), regardless of your ability or skills on the actual topic in question.

What I mean here is having read comments such as:

“may not know enough about a topic to offer an insightful reply.”
“Fear that I sound stupid/uninformed.”
“I’m not sure if I have anything of worth to contribute”
“Sounding silly/stupid”

There are numerous others very similar to this… now, a BIG pat on the back to you for making the effort, that’s important to me, and also a big pat on the back for being honest.

BUT…..

Now, this is where I differ… I personally feel it is important to leave your presence felt even if you do not actively contribute to the discussion, even if you do not add what YOU perceive to be of value, even if YOU think you are not progressing the thread. All this is all of little importance, what IS important on a blog is that you converse, just as you would down the pub, it’s important to ME and YOU.

In the pub you may not engage in deep and meaningful debate on all manner of topics, but you would certainly not just ignore and not communicate something, even a nod, a wink, a smile, a hi are very important body language statements of acknowledgement.

I feel a blog is in a similar territory, it is a conversational platform, this is not a thesis for a Phd this is not a corporate document or a medical journal, this is me talking with you about my passions and thoughts, and you talking with me. This blog is an extension of me, this is what you’d get in the pub with me, but in text form minus the body language.

So here is my call to action.

Next time you feel a little of that “fear” (let’s call it comment fear) push it away and jump in, even if it is a “thanks for sharing”… this is exactly what social media is.

So, thanks for sharing.

Quechup And Mass Hysteria

Yesterday I had a ton of invites into a new social networking site Quechup. Some of the invites were from a variety of people I know, some were random, and one or two from people I respect to be somewhat of an authority on social media, if that is even possible.

Having so many email invites in my inbox around a similar time-frame of course meant that clearly some kind of email import facility was taking place, and let’s be up front here, pretty much ALL social media sites have this form of functionality these days, I mean hell I’m planning it into the new re-build of The Phone Cam.

Email Importing

If you are not sure what email importing is I’ll explain it. The concept is actually very simple and VERY useful for us to be able to build our network of contacts. Basically what takes place is that a script, upon your command (this is key), will go off and log-in to your email client, which can range from Gmail to Yahoo and then import your address book to the said application’s database. Now this is a very useful feature because now you have all of your contacts in the new application which you can then invite into the network. Of course some contacts you would want to invite and some you wouldn’t.

Where did Quechup go wrong?

Quechup didn’t let YOU choose who to invite, it invited everyone to the party!

So Quechup have seemingly operated in one of three ways:

1. Purposefully designed their system so new users think that address book importing is part of the mandatory sign-up, i.e. something you MUST do (which it isn’t in fact, you can skip it)
2. Unknowingly created the above environment (not likely)
3. Created the situation where they know mass e-mails will be sent and “hey, if it creates a stir we’ll get a ton of in-bound links and raise our google rank”.

However you view this, no matter what your opinion is on this the fact of the matter is that you should READ what the page says as it is very clear. In any case there is a link which says “I don’t have an address book”!

quechup

“Congratulations! Welcome to Quechup. Find out which of your friends are already members. Choose the address book with the most contacts and we’ll search for matches so you can add them to your friends network and invite non Quechup members to join you. By inviting contacts you confirm you have consent from them to send an invitation. We will not spam or sell addresses from your contacts.”

That is pretty clear in intention, and this is where I stopped during my sign-up. Why did I stop, well I didn’t want to invite anyone without knowing what the system was actually about, I never do that.

Now if you are one of the unlucky people who didn’t read that and went ahead and created the account anyway with the address import I can only say you should READ these things clearly in the future, it’s quite simple.

I would say though that Quechup could be seen as “sneaky” on this matter, as the wording could be more explicit of the outcome, it’s not overly obvious I have to say.

So what happened?

Well what happened is some of the early adopters in social media networks created accounts only to find out a ton of email invites on their behalf had been sent out from their imported address books. This ruffled quite a few feathers and what appeared to happen was a slight hyseteria took place, with many of followers of some of the “influencers” (I do not like that title) “brown-nosing” and all joining in on the Quechup “witch-hunt”.

Now right there is what I dislike most about social media, that mass hysteria, and somewhat blind following, like some kind of religious cult. I saw person after person jump on the “band wagon” of Quechup hatred without first finding the facts, and that scares me, a lot!

What should have happened is each individually should access the situation exactly and not jump to conclusions, use their own brain and not just bite the hook every time, you are not a sheep.

As a closing remark, I do not think Quechup would give a crap at all if they ruffled some feathers of some “influencers”, by now they will have more than enough momentum to build a solid network, I could be wrong, but time will tell.

The other thing is it might be worth giving them the benfit of the doubt and ok so they made a mistake, have you never made one? I’m not saying it was a mistake to be unclear, but it may have been, you know?

Now, please do comment, and give it substance and evidence please, not just excited “but they spammed but they spammed”, because they did warn you as far as I can read it.

MediaCamp BUCKS 07 Logo

I had an email in my inbox this morning from Eaon Pritchard who has designed an awesome logo for MediaCampBUCKS 07.

Eaon went for a “populist” and “web2.0” look which is perfect for the event, nice one Eaon!

If you have not heard about MediaCamp yet, we (that’s you) are hosting the event at BCUC, just 30 minutes west of London, which is a piece of cake to get to from any direction, on October 20.

MediaCamp is a free un-conference where the whole event is driven by the participants themselves, it is set to be a real mix-up of people too, coming from marketing, academia, b2b, bloggers, sound-designers, networkers, agencies, the whole range of peeps getting together to learn and share.

This MediaCampBUCKS 07 is heavily focussed on new-media tools, and how we can embrace them in our careers, instruction, business etc.

Sign up on the wiki to attend, sponsor or present.

MediaCampBUCKS07

What do you think of the logo yourself?