Tuesday, October 27, 2009

How Digital Channels Will Change Brand Management Forever - #FCF09

I will be on a panel today at the Forrester Consumer Forum 2009 in Chicago, IL October 27, 2009. The panel is titled: How Digital Channels Will Change Brand Management Forever: A Panel Discussion for Customer Intelligence & Marketing Leadership Professionals. The panel will be moderated by Lisa Bradner (@lisabradner) of Forrester and include:

  • Colin Gillespie Global Director of Marketing, Lego
Here are the questions and topics we will be covering:
  • Why and how must traditional brand management change in the face of digital channels?
  • How are brands incorporating new channels into their marketing organizations?
  • How are organizations balancing global and local branding?
  • How does theh role of agencies change in the digital era?
Looking forward to meeting the other panelists and having a thoughtful and insightful panel discussion on this important topic.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Forrester Consumer Forum 2009 and eMarketing Conference Atlanta 2009

I will be attending the Forrester Leadership Board: Interactive Marketing Council Meeting in Chicago, IL October 26 and the Forrester Consumer Forum 2009 in Chicago, IL October 27-28, 2009.

The Interactive Marketing Council is a great group of eBusiness, eCommerce and eMarketing leaders from an array of different companies. I always learn a lot from the other members when we get together for these face-to-face meetings. Forrester is constantly innovating ways to make these meetings better and more interactive. I am looking forward to seeing several friends and colleagues I have not seen in many months.

The Forrester Consumer Forum is one of the best conferences I attend every year. The insights on the consumer landscape, social web marketing, interactive and integrated marketing are outstanding. I am looking forward to filling my brain with new ideas, data and tactics we can use to reach our Newell Rubbermaid consumers.

The theme for this years conference is "The Three Dimensional Consumer: Creating Breakthrough Multichannel Relationships." This fits in well with my thoughts and theories around the social web ecosystem and integrated marketing.

The hashtag for the Forrester Consumer Forum 2009 is #FCF09 and they have a very cool iPhone app that you can download from iTunes or get here developed by ThoughtWorks. The Twitter id is @Forrester.

Here is a summary of what to expect at the forum:

"The Web has come a long way — but not far enough. Many transactional and even brand Web sites began as outgrowths of the catalog or phone channels. As a result, most online experiences are one-dimensional and treat all customers the same, and most sites support buying experiences but fail to engage customers before and after they make a purchase or brand decision. Executives seeking to create profitable relationships must evolve online channel efforts to support three-dimensional consumers. In short, it's time for the Web to grow up and serve as the center of the relationship that companies have with their customers.

Three-dimensional consumers have needs, interests, and questions. To please these demanding customers, earn their repeat business, and have them recommend you to their networks — offline and online — you'll need to effectively engage them as they plan their purchase or brand decisions, help them find the most relevant value as they're buying, and support them during and between their purchases and interactions — all across multiple channels. At this Event, leading Forrester analysts will present research on how evolving consumer online behavior demands that firms step up efforts to engage them, and executives will share their companies' best practices for creating breakthrough multichannel relationships."

I will also be the Day 2, October 29, 2009 Keynote Speaker at eM9 eMarketing Conference Atlanta 2009. I will be discussing Newell Rubbermaid's eBusiness, eMarketing and Social Web Marketing strategies and tactics.

I am very excited and honored to have been asked to deliver a presentation at this conference again. I last presented at eM7 in 2007.

The hashtag for eM9 eMarketing Conference Atlanta 2009 is #eMAtlanta and the Twitter id for the event is @eMAtlanta. Looking forward to seeing everyone at this conference.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Twitter Helps Dilbert Goof Off At Work

I was reading my daily Mashable newsletter today and the 2nd to last item caught my eye: Twitter Helps Dilbert Goof Off At Work. Anytime Dilbert focuses on the social web ecosystem phenomena it is always a joy. The below Dilbert comic is an especially funny take on Twitter. Enjoy.


Monday, September 28, 2009

10 Fortune 500 Companies Doing Social Media Right

Jennifer Leggio wrote a very nice blog post on ZDNet titled: 10 Fortune 500 Companies Doing Social Media Right. I am honored she chose to include my company Newell Rubbermaid and a quote from me in that list. Some excellent companies are included on the list: Intel, Cisco, EMC and Fedex to name a few.

Jennifer Leggio, also known as Mediaphyter, is a co-host with Aaron Strout on BlogTalkRadio Quick-n-Dirty Podcast.

Friday, September 25, 2009

New Media Atlanta 2009 - #NMATL

I am attending and will be on a panel at the first ever New Media Atlanta conference at the Georgia Tech Research Institute Conference Center in Atlanta, GA.

The keynote speaker is Chris Brogan (his blog: chrisbrogan.com) and I had the opportunity to spend a few minutes with him. He also autographed his new book for attendees: Trust Agents - Using the Web to Build Influence, Improve Reputation, and Earn Trust.

Here are pictures of Chris Brogan, with Stainless Steel Sharpie in hand, and I taken by Jenny DeVaughn and Jennifer Carter:

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic

My panel was titled: Are You Ready For Social Media?: Preparing Your Teams to Listen, Engage, Measure & Adapt

Bert DuMars, Peter Fasano, Seth Miller (and TBSVeryFunny, MostlyMuppet) with Jeff Turner moderating:

Managing an effective social networking campaign is both an art and a science. This panel will give you insight into the tools and techniques used by several large companies in their efforts to engage their customers using Social Media.

Also, I came in 5th during the special Chris Brogan/New Media Atlanta TwitterINGO game. I will be hosting TwitterINGO on September 29, 2009. Hope you can play, should be a challenging set of words.

So many great Atlanta friends in attendance it is difficult to list them all. But you can follow everyone's tweets at #NMATL.

September 26, 2009 Update:

Stacy Williams wrote a thoughtful post on the Backnoise channel at New Media Atlanta. Well worth the investment of your time to read the post and the comments. Unexpected Learnings: BackNoise Can Be Toxic

September 27, 2009 Update:

Another excellent blog post on New Media Atlanta - Blog: New Media Atlanta and Chris Brogan by Ilyce Glink

And another: New Media Atlanta - Social Media Rockstars by Jenny DeVaughn

September 28, 2009 Update:

More blog posts that are excellent reads on New Media Atlanta and the backchannel noise on BackNoise:

Do Backchannels Know No Boundaries by Jason Keith

Who Can Be Brogan by Matt Fagioli

He Said, She Said Volume 5 (and here) by Todd Schnick & Stephanie Lloyd

Snarkiness, anonymity, and backchannel conversations at professional conferences by Paul Chaney

September 29, 2009 Update:

What I told them at New Media Atlanta by Chris Brogan (includes some comments and video of presentation) - Interesting, Insightful and Fun

Thursday, September 24, 2009

iab MIXX New York Presentation

I presented with ForeSee Results at the iab MIX Conference & Expo in New York City on September 22, 2009. Our presentation was titled: Beyond Click-throughs and Tweets - Qualitative Measurement of Site Visitor Segments.

Here is a summary of the presentation:

Beyond Clickthroughs and Tweets: Qualitative Measurement of Site Visitor Segments

Successful interactive and social media campaigns drive traffic to your web site, but how well does your web site succeed at bringing vistors closer to your brand and making them loyal customers? Applying a scientific analytics approach to online customer satisfaction measurement provides a qualitative view of the customer experience. This approach enables brands to quantify the intangible value of the site experience and project future behavior that will drive financial success. In the process, brands can gain key insights about visitor segments that help them market more effectively online and offline. Learn how Newell Rubbermaid is applying this measurement approach to Sharpie and other brands and how satisfaction analytics can enhance your measurement system.

Bert DuMars, Vice President, E-Business and Interactive Marketing, Newell Rubbermaid

Eric Head, Senior Director, Business Development, ForeSee Results

The audience was energized and had lots of questions. It was a pleasure presenting with Eric.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

New Calphalon.com Website Launches

We launched the new Calphalon.com website today, September 19, 2009.

The new design is focused on the Culinary Lifestyle and integrates consumer generated product reviews from BazaarVoice and advanced where-to-buy services from Channel Intelligence.

The site was developed by LBi Atlanta (@LBi_Atlanta) on a Microsoft Office SharePoint Server, Commerce Server, Microsoft SQL and Biztalk server platform hosted at Rackspace.

Kamie McHenry-Eckert was the lead Calphalon E-Marketing Manager and Imran Khan was the lead Corporate E-Business Program Manager on the project.

We are thrilled and excited to unveil this next generation website and look forward to its continued evolution.

UGA CONNECT 2009 Conference

I attended University of Georgia, Grady College, CONNECT 2009 conference today, September 19, 2009 in Athens, GA. Porter Novelli is the lead sponsor for the conference.

Panelists and audience debated the value and impact of social media communications.

The hashtag for the conference is #connect. You can also find out more about the conference, speakers and discussions at the following locations:

Twitter: @UGAConnect
Blog: ugaconnect2009
Flickr: ugaconnect09
Delicious: UGAConnect2009
YouTube: UGAConnect

The panels included the following:

Is Social Media Transformational? – Panel Discussion
Melanie James – University of Newcastle (Australia) (via Skype)
Dan Greenfield – Bernaise Source Media, Atlanta, GA
Aaron De Lucia - Porter Novelli

Integrating Social Media in Non-Profits Panel
Tom Watson – Bournemouth University (United Kingdom) (via Skype)
Richard Waters – North Carolina State University, Raleigh, NC
Sara Valkova – Emory Healthcare, Atlanta, GA

Integrating Social Media in Business and Industry Panel
Jeremy Pepper – Palisades Systems, Los Angeles, CA
Toby Bloomberg – Bloomberg Marketing/Diva Marketing, Atlanta, GA

Speaker: Lauren Fernandez, Public Relations Blogger, Dallas, TX

Legal Issues with Employee Blogging
Perry Binder- Georgia State University, Atlanta, GA

Integrating Social Media in Government Panel
John Tedesco - Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA
Lt. Connie Braesch – U.S. Coast Guard, Washington DC (via Skype)

Speaker Bios can be found here and here.

The nice thing about this conference is that it is small enough for the audience to actively engage and debate the presenters. Nothing is taken for granted and controversial perspectives on the theme are not held back

Thursday, September 17, 2009

New Rubbermaid.com Launches

We launched the new Rubbermaid.com website last night, September 16, 2009.

The new design is focused on home organization solutions and integrates consumer generated product reviews from BazaarVoice, advanced where-to-buy services from Channel Intelligence, and affiliate marketing services from Commission Junction (@CJnetwork).

The site was developed by LBi Atlanta (@LBi_Atlanta) on a Microsoft Office SharePoint Server, Commerce Server, Microsoft SQL and Biztalk server platform hosted at Rackspace.

Jim Deitzel was the lead E-Marketing Manager and Imran Khan was the lead E-Business Program Manager on the project.

We are thrilled and excited to unveil this next generation website and look forward to its continued evolution.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

From Zero to Community: Practical Advice for Growing and Nurturing an Online Community

I will be on a webcast tomorrow, September 17, 2009 at 3PM Eastern with Aaron Strout, CMO at Powered, and Rachel Happe, Principal and Founder, The Community Roundtable (@theCR). We will be presenting: From Zero To Community: Practical Advice for Growing and Nurturing an Online Community.

Rachel will be presenting her Community Maturity Model and community management best practices. I will be discussing our Sharpie - Uncap Your Creativity, Graco Baby - From The Heart and Rubbermaid - Adventures in Organizaton communities and social networking efforts.

Hope you can attend.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

New Marketing Ecosystem And Three Spheres of Web Strategy

I like the poster that Mullen marketing agency developed depicting The New Marketing Ecosystem (see below). This is a comprehensive view of all the touchpoints and complexities of connecting with today's consumer. I have this poster hanging in my office.

I also like the perspective Jeremiah Owyang (@jowyang) provides on Web Strategy with his diagram below - The Three Spheres of Web Strategy - Updated for 2009. It is a simple view that provides needed clarity on this very complex subject. I keep a copy of this with me wherever I go.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

The Hierarchy of Digital Distractions

The above graphic provides a very interesting perspective on distractions caused by digital devices. The pyramid was developed by Chris McCandless, http://informationisbeautiful.net. Here is his blog post: The Hierarchy of Digital Distractions and a Mashable article on the graphic. Chris definitely develops some interesting and cool graphical representations. Check them all out on his blog and at Flickr.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The HUB Magazine - Being Social

I was interviewed by Tim Manners of The HUB Magazine on Social Media and Social Networking topics a few weeks back. The article: "Being Social," just came out today. The article also includes quotes and comments from:

I am honored to have been interviewed with these other very strong players in the social media and social web ecosystem.

In addition to this article coming out today, Newell Rubbermaid was also featured in a Wall Street Journal article discussing our Twitter recruiting efforts. "A New Job Is Just A Tweet Away" discusses how we use Twitter to find untapped talent. The Newell Rubbermaid Twitter recruiting id is @CoolJobsatNWL.

Friday, September 4, 2009

My Little Panda Poken Needs A Friend

I bought my little Poken (to the left) a few weeks ago and have yet to make friends with someone in the Atlanta area that has one as well. So, my Panda Poken needs a friend.

Pokens swap a virtual business card by doing a High-4 (see the four-fingered hand in the picture at left). Touch two Pokens together and they will send each other the virtual business card. You can then connect them to your PC or Mac and upload the collected cards to your Poken card database. Pretty simple and fun.

I wonder how Pokens will do as Apps like Bump proliferate on Apple iPhones -- another way to swap virtual business cards. I have used Bump and it is ok, but the connections were a little touchy.

So, I am looking for a Tweetup, Meetup or Poken Party in the Atlanta area. Please leave a comment if you know of an upcoming event.

Here are some more articles on the Poken (@poken):

What We Can Learn From Poken - Josh Bernoff, @jbernoff, Forrester Research, Groundswell Blog

Wikipedia Poken

Poken: Tiny RFID Thingies That Share All Your Personal Data With Others

Vlogger Sarah Austin's "Back in SF" Poken Party - San Francisco Chronicle

And you can join Poken network groups on Facebook and Ning.

And here are a couple of videos that provide more detail on Poken:

Poken: The Movie

Wall Street Journal Video on Pokens

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Ignite Atlanta

Ignite Atlanta is 18 presentations, 20 slides per presentation, 20 seconds per slide. Very similar to Pecha Kucha. Hashtag on Twitter is #IgniteATL and Twitter id is @IgniteATL.

All information is here: http://ignite-atlanta.com/

Backchannel conversation is here: http://backnoise.com/?IgniteATL

#1 - 9 Really Dumb Mistakes People Make in Business - @davideckoff
#2 - No Adult Left Behind - @HeathWilkes
#3 - Common Sense - @Corvida
#4 - Sustainable Overclocking - @gomeler
#5 - Beauty For Change - @juliesquires
#6 - Welcome To Atlanta - @AmericanMaglev
#7 - Science and the Importance of Chit-Chat -
#8 - Why Can't Our Space Program Be Like The iPod - There is a lot of Space to Explore
#9 - Secrets of Sand Skink (Sand Fish) Swimming in Sand
#10 - The Meaning of Life - Random Slides, Random Speaker (Birthday Gag)
#11 - The Hydrogen Myth - Stephen Fleming, Vice Provost Georgia Tech
#12 - A Case Of The Mondays - @MondayNight - Craft Brewing http://mondaynightbrewery.com/
#13 - HDR Imaging for n00bs - High Dynamic Range - @Stammy
#14 - How To Identify A Social Media Douchebag - @tessa
#15 - Posting Economy - wtf - Ignite Denver representative
#16 - Mil-OSS - Military Open Source Software - @simplehuman
#17 - Parallel Entrepreneurism - How to have 5 startups and not work very hard - joke presentation - 4-hour Work Week Satire - @pfreet
#18 - Deliverance - Keith McGreggor -"Singularity is a point where we can't see past it."

Ignite Atlanta has been a very interesting and entertaining event. There probably needs to be a few more rehearsals before the day of presentations, but overall the presenters did a good job for the first event in Atlanta.

Additional blog posts:
Ignite ATL - A Mini TED of the Southeast - @yanekm - my perspective: "I would not go that far, but it has the opportunity to turn into something special".

You Can't Handle The Truth - @JennyDeVaughn

Atlanta Bloggers Meetup

Had a great time last night (September 2, 2009) meeting other Atlanta bloggers. The Atlanta Bloggers Meetup at Manuels Tavern was a kick and I enjoyed the conversation.

Here are some of the fun and interesting bloggers who attended:

Chad Rothschild - @chadrothschild - Blog: http://chadrothschild.com/
Marisa Sharpe - @marisasharpe - Blog: http://marisajaffe.com/
Jenny DeVaughn - @JennyDeVaughn - Blog: http://socialprecision.com/
Wendy Parker - @wparker - Blog: http://inkdrainedkvetch.wordpress.com/
Taryn Pisaneschi - @tarynp - Blog: http://tarynp.com/

There were 20+ more who attended as well. Looking forward to the next one I am able to attend. As an FYI - next Meetup is scheduled for Oct. 7.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Green Business Expo 2009

I will be on a Green Business Works 2009 panel on September 2, 2009 in Atlanta, GA titled: When to join the Social Media Conversation and What to Say.

The panel includes:

Should be a fun and interesting social media panel with a how-to-get-started focus that is environmentally friendly.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

SXSW 2010 Interactive Panel Proposal Update and Some Of My Favorites

First, I want to provide an update on our SXSW panel submission: Building A Team That Embraces Social Technologies. We have a fantastic lineup of panelists:

Kami Huyse - a 15-year veteran of public relations with an emphasis in social media. She has a thriving practice with primarily corporate clients. She is the principal of My PR Pro. Her blog is Communications Overtones. She is also someone I always enjoy talking to about social media and interactive marketing.

Paull Young - a social media strategist at Converseon. He writes about social media and public relations at Young PR. I have known Paull for almost 2 years now. He and his agency (Converseon) have been guiding the Newell Rubbermaid, Graco Baby brand team on our social media marketing journey. Examples of these efforts include the Graco Baby blog and Facebook fan page. He is also currently assisting our Goody brand in analyzing the social web ecosystem and determining the best strategy to pursue in social media marketing. Paull also wrote a fun and irreverent plea for your vote on Facebook: Begging For Your SXSW Vote. Check it out.

Jeremiah Owyang - a social media, interactive marketer and web strategist who just left Forrester Research, after a fantastic 3 years, to become a Partner at the Altimeter Group. His Web Strategy by Jeremiah Owyang blog is very popular and a must read for social media marketers. He has been an excellent guide to me over the past couple of years and I sincerely respect his objective perspective and insights on social media marketing, web strategy and interactive marketing.

Lionel Menchaca -
is a 15-year Dell veteran and chief blogger at Direct2Dell, Dell’s main corporate blog. Since launching the blog in July 2006, Lionel helped expand it into Chinese, Spanish, Norwegian and Japanese and continues to work to further extend Dell’s global presence. Before launching Dell’s blog, Lionel was one of the main architects behind Dell’s blog monitoring process begun in April 2006.

What is most amazing about this panel is that 4 of us actually were together in September, 2008 attending the University of Georgia, Grady College CONNECT 2008 conference. All 4 of us were speakers at that fantastic conference created and managed by Dr. Karen Russell (Teaching PR blog). If you can make it this year, CONNECT 2009 is being held in Athens, GA on September 19, 2009.

I hope you take the time to both review and vote for our panel:
Building A Team That Embraces Social Technologies.

Now, as promised, here are some more exceptional panels to review (in no particular order), consider and vote for:

Inherent Dangers of Real-Time Social Networking by Jennifer Leggio

Finding a Social Media "Expert" Who is Really an Expert by Kami Huyse

Lifestreaming: Its Impact on Blogs, Brands and Beyond by Lionel Menchaca

Open Leadership: The Upside of Giving Up Control by Charlene Li

Unleashing Employees Through Social Media by Lionel Menchaca (Note: I am also a panelist)

Social Media ROI: Results That Measure Up by Kami Huyse

Anatomy of a TEDTalk by Jason Wishnow

Taking Corporate Out Of The Corporate Blog by Chelsea Marti

Results Only Work Environment (ROWE): Why it Works by Nikki Haffey

There are 2265 SXSW panel proposals to consider this year. The energy invested in these proposals is amazing and fantastic. This shows the vibrant nature of interactive and social media marketers and that we are a high octane crowd.

Please do take the time to consider the panel proposals above and the many others I have not mentioned.

Hope to have the opportunity to see you at SXSW 2010 Interactive.

Friday, August 21, 2009

Atlanta PR Camp

I had the pleasure of being a camp counselor/moderator today at the PR Camp Atlanta (press release) event developed by Dan Greenfield of Bernaise Source Media.

The event was held at the Georgia Tech Research Institute Conference Center and there were approximately 200 attendees.

I had the pleasure of moderating the first session for the Green Team. We discussed the following:

  • What obstacles have to be overcome to gain executive level trust to support the creation and execution of new media and social web marketing programs?
  • What tactics and strategies are off the table?
  • What new media and social web marketing programs are much easier to explain and execute? What programs are easier to get executive buy-in?
Team Green had great insights, energy and ideas on how to answer these questions and address these very important topics. The main point of the event was to provide an immersive social media and fast paced experience.

Team Green proposed the following in response to the questions above:
  • overcoming executive fear through education
  • developing a cohesive and well-thought out strategy
  • explaining how social media is another channel to the consumer
It was a fantastic event and I had the pleasure of meeting many new people in Atlanta. Dan Greenfield did a great job arranging and managing the event.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

TED Global 2009 Session Starting Videos

Here are some fun, creative, artistic and truly innovative videos that were shown during the opening of a few of the TED Global 2009 sessions. View and enjoy.

Extreme Sheep LED Art

Phillips Carousel Commercial - Adam Berg Commercial of the Year - Stink Digital

The Beatles Rock Band

Coldplay - Strawberry Swing

Bonus Video - Evian Babies

Monday, August 17, 2009

SXSW Panel Proposal: Building a Team That Embraces Social Technologies

I submitted a panel for SXSW - South By Southwest 2010 - titled: Building a Team That Embraces Social Technologies. My co-panelist is Kami Huyse of Communications Overtones. I will add 2 additional panelists if the panel proposal is accepted.

Here is the panel description:
Event: Interactive 2010
Level: Advanced
Type: Panel

Branding / Marketing / Publicity, Business / Entrepreneurial / Monetization, Career / Work Concerns, Case Study, Social Networking

Bert DuMars, Newell Rubbermaid

  1. When is the right time to bring in a consultant or agency?
  2. How do you determine if a consultant has the required expertise?
  3. What does it take for this arrangement to be successful?
  4. What approach should the team leader take to keep it working?
  5. How can agencies and consultants effectively work alongside internal teams?
  6. What is best left to the internal team?
  7. What role is best played by the external team?
  8. How to avoid infighting among multiple agencies and consultants?
  9. How can these blended teams work together to craft strategies to engage?
  10. Why do some efforts fail to produce the desired results?

This session will cover how brands successfully integrate internal and external teams to engage with customers using social technologies. Both agencies and companies will learn how to work together more effectively to serve the customer. It also covers what consultants can do and what is best left to the brand.
If you find this panel of interest and think it would add value to South by Southwest 2010, please go here and vote.

If The Twitter Community Were 100 People

I like the perspective on Twitter provided by the below graphic created by David McCandless from his Information is Beautiful blog. It simplifies the view of the Twitter community by synthsizing it down to 100 people. It also provides an interesting perspective on what people are tweeting about on different days of the week. For instance, real life tweets occur on Saturdays, one of the lowest volume days.

As someone who is very active on Twitter and fits in at the high end of engagement, it is interesting to note how many are not actively engaged. You can also find this graphic on flickr.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Quck-n-Dirty Social Media Podcast

I have the pleasure of being a guest on the Quick-n-Dirty Social Media Podcast this evening, 6 PM Eastern Time, August 13, 2009. The hosts are Jennifer Leggio, ZDNet Blogger and @Mediaphyter, and Aaron Strout, CMO Powered Inc. and @AaronStrout. We will be discussing Newell Rubbermaid's branded social media and community marketing efforts and other related topics.

For those who cannot listen live, the Podcast will be available and archived on BlogTalkRadio.

Added 09/10/09 - A little background on the Quick 'n' Dirty Podcast and the hosts: New Podcast with Jennifer Leggio aka Mediaphyter

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Efficient Website Redesigns: 6 Tactics to Guide Your Process

I was interviewed for the MarketingSherpa article: Efficient Website Redesigns: 6 Tactics to Guide Your Process a few weeks back and the article came out very well.

Please read down to the bottom of the article for some great resources for your website redesign efforts.

Here are the 6 Tactics:
  1. Get user feedback from online surveys
  2. Analyze click-stream data
  3. Work from a well-defined brand strategy
  4. Assign at least one (Full-Time) in-house person to oversee the project
  5. Focus redesign on improving common problems
  6. Aim to satisfy the majority of visitors

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Voices in the Technology For The Turnaround Conversation

I received the Spring 2009, Pomona College Magazine and was sitting by the pool reading it when I realized the magazine editors had compiled a timely and comprehensive set of articles on the present and future of journalism. The articles were written by Pomona College alumni ranging from Bill Keller, Class of 1970, and New York Times Executive Editor to Molly Goodson (@mollygoodson), Class of 2004, Editorial Creative Director at PopSugar.

The title of this post refers to the University of Georgia, Grady College, New Media Institute, Technology For The Turnaround (my blog post) event I attended April 25, 2009. That event focused on the future of journalism, public relations and mass communications. At the end of the event, all attendees agreed this is an evolving discussion and a critical piece to the future of the social web ecosystem. If you want to review the conversation and discussion that occurred during the event, use the hashtag #tech4turn and do a search on Twitter.

I believe journalism and journalists are very important to researching, analyzing, synthesizing and reporting on local, national and international events. I also believe that bloggers are and will become more like journalists and journalists will become more like bloggers and vloggers. It is the merging of professional and practiced journalism technique with social technologies that will lead to the future of what we currently call newspapers and magazines. Once newspapers, magazines and journalists truly embrace social technologies and become unencumbered by the spatial requirements of paper, they will both deliver far more depth and insights and more concise stories. Journalists must embrace tools like Twitter that enforce a 140 character limitation while also taking advantage of the infinite space afforded to them on websites and blogs to deliver far more background and depth to their stories that were edited out in the past.

There was also an excellent debate last night (July 6, 2009) on #Journchat (@Journchat) about journalism and public relations specifically related to a New York Times story: "Spinning The Web: P.R. In Silicon Valley" and the corresponding arguments about this article on TechCrunch: "The Reality of PR: Smile, Dial, Name Drop, Pray" and Dave Taylor's The Business Blog At Intutive.com: "Mike Arrington Doesn't Understand PR At All..." Both blog posts make strong arguments about the pros and cons of PR today and how integration of traditional and new media approaches are required to be successful.

Below are links to the Pomona College Magazine articles on the present and future of journalism. Read and enjoy.
I hope you enjoy these articles and I look forward to the continuing conversation around this vital topic during the weekly #journchat and #blogchat events or at a future University of Georgia, Grady College CONNECT (CONNECT Blog) or New Media Institute events.

July 8, 2009 Revision - I am adding this blog post: "Thoughts on the Future of Journalism from the Purple List" as another good discussion on the future of journalism.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Clay Shirky: How Twitter can make history

I just watched this June 2009 TED (TED = Technology, Entertainment, Design) video: "Clay Shirky: How Twitter can make history" for the 5th time and I continue getting more social web ecosystem insights out of it. Clay Shirky is amazingly prescient as seen in both of the below videos. The older TED video from 2005: "Clay Shirky on institutions vs. collaboration" predicted almost exactly what would happen in the social web ecosystem and how it would impact society and culture in 2008.

This June 2009 video essentially predicts, without specifically calling out Iran, what could happen politically, socially and culturally when closed societies' citizens gain and use the power of the social web ecosystem and open tools and services like Twitter.

Both videos are well worth the approximately twenty minute investment to watch. Also, check out the TED Blog: "Q&A with Clay Shirky on Twitter and Iran" where he discusses the Iran election and political uprising that is still continuing today, June 20, 2009.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

AMA Atlanta Panel Presentation: Advocacy In The Digital Age

I was honored today to be part of a panel presenting ideas, concepts and case studies related to social media, social web and interactive marketing to the American Marketing Association - Atlanta Chapter. It was an energized, sold out crowd that provided insightful and eloquent questions during the Q&A.

The panel: Advocacy in the Digital Age was moderated by Glen Caruso (@glencaruso), FY 2008-2009 AMA Atlanta President, and Director of Advertising Sales at Tremor Media.

Panel Description:

Social media is greatly impacting the lives of everyday people and as well as the marketers that are trying to reach them. After all, online communities provide businesses with an efficient way to reach targeted segments of the population as well as monitor their customers’ opinions about products, services and brands. But what does this sea change really mean for brands? Join us to learn how to:

  • Effectively tap into this groundswell of activity.

  • Leverage your most passionate fans to drive bottom line value.

  • Foster brand advocacy while adhering to the delicate and varied mores that govern marketing’s role within social networks

  • Panel members included:

    Thought Leader Perspective on Social Media and Advocacy - Dave Rollo
    (@iRollo) – SVP, Director of Digital Media Strategy, 22squared

    WOM as Social Media – Dave Balter (@DaveBalter), CEO, BzzAgent Dave will look at the role of WOM in creating advocacy and spark a discussion of what social media means for brands. Balter will explore a selection of word-of-mouth generating success stories and highlight how marketers have effectively engaged with brand advocates and measured the outcome. Mr. Balter is also the author of several books including: The Word Of Mouth Manual: Volume II and Grapevine: Why Buzz Was a Fad but Word of Mouth is Forever.

    Brand Case Study - Bert DuMars (@bwdumars), Vice President E-Business & Interactive Marketing, Newell Rubbermaid. Bert will present how Newell Rubbermaid has successfully used social media to drive business results.

    Dave Rollo and David Balter did an excellent job of framing the social web ecosystem and provided a number of statistical insights and case studies from their clients. I discussed our social media marketing efforts at our Graco Baby, Rubbermaid and Sharpie brands. See my post: Newell Rubbermaid Social Web Ecosystem Update.

    I want to send a big Thank You out to the AMA Atlanta Chapter and especially Glen Caruso and Tracy Frank for running an excellent event and inviting me to participate.

    Tuesday, June 9, 2009

    How and When to Incorporate Social Media Into Your Next PR Program

    I was part of a Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) (@PRSA) webinar today, June 9, 2009 from 3PM to 4PM EST - How and When to Incorporate Social Media into your next PR Program.

    The webinar panel included the following industry experts:

    • Rob Key, CEO, founded Converseon in 2001 to provide new, innovative communication solutions designed to help companies meet their business objectives in a digital environment. Previously, he was head of the Innovations Group at a division of Young & Rubicam and member of the WPP.com board. His twenty years of experience spans public relations, reputation management, search marketing, affiliate marketing and online media/advertising. (@robkey)

    • David Bradfield, partner, Fleishman-Hillard, manages the FH Digital team, which combines industry-leading strategic counsel in interactive, digital and social media with full-service design and development capabilities to help clients navigate the evolving world of communication, conversation and community. He is also a practice group leader, which includes more than 120 digital communication consultants, and creative and technical development professionals. (@dbradfield)

    • And me -

      Bert DuMars, vice president, E-Business and Interactive Marketing for Newell Rubbermaid, is responsible for directing and coordinating e-marketing, interactive marketing, social media marketing and e-commerce initiatives for Newell Rubbermaid’s externally-facing Web sites, overseeing a new e-business shared services model with standard processes, enterprise services, technologies and metrics across the company’s brand sites. (@bwdumars)

    We discussed several topics including
    • How to engage with your target customer segments through social media efforts.
    • How to start - Listening - and how tools like Converseon Conversation Miner can help.
    • The value of Twitter and how to begin using it to engage with consumers.
    • How to handle bloggers who are unhappy with your brand.
    • How to find and engage with influential bloggers.
    • How to manage your social media efforts.
    • How to use the way consumers talk about your brands and products in your communications
    I want to send a big thank you out to PRSA and Peter Himler for including me as a panelist.

    Monday, June 8, 2009

    Newell Rubbermaid Social Web Ecosystem Update

    It has been a very busy past couple of weeks. Below is an update on Newell Rubbermaid interactive and social web marketing efforts:

    I also wanted to provide an update on the various places where you can find out more about Newell Rubbermaid brands in the social web ecosystem.

    Newell Rubbermaid Brands on YouTube:

    Bernzomatic Fat Boy

    Graco Baby Products

    Lenox Tools


    Rubbermaid Commercial



    Newell Rubbermaid Brands on Facebook:

    Newell Rubbermaid Corporate Fan Page - Corporate Communications and Recruiting

    BernzOmatic MAPP Propane and Butane powered Torches and Lighters

    Graco Baby Fan Page

    Irwin Industrial Tools UK Ultimate Tradesman Challenge

    Irwin Vise Grip Appreciation Society

    Lenox Tools Fan Page

    Mimio Fan Page

    Paper Mate Fan Page

    Parker Gentleman's Club Fan Page

    Prismacolor Fan Page

    Prismacolor Group

    Rubbermaid Fan Page

    Sharpie Permanent Markers

    Sharpie Fan Club

    uni-ball Fan Page

    Newell Rubbermaid Blogs:

    Graco Baby - From The Heart

    Rubbermaid - Adventures In Organization

    Sharpie - Uncap What's Inside

    Newell Rubbermaid Twitter Accounts:



















    I will make updates to this list as we increase our presence in the social web ecosystem.

    June 9, 2009 Update:

    Sharpie "Uncap What's Inside" integrated marketing campaign additional articles:

    Sunday, May 31, 2009

    Corporate Marketers Blogging, Tweeting As Part Of Their Job

    Jennie Phelps, Investors Business Daily, wrote a very nice article about Newell Rubbermaid's social media/social web marketing efforts. She interviewed me about six weeks ago and wrote a nice summary and analysis on our efforts with a special focus on the Sharpie brand. The article is titled: Corporate Marketers Blogging, Tweeting As Part of their Job.

    I have been thinking a lot about the Skittles interactive marketing campaign and social media marketing focused brand website. I know they have been receiving a lot of flack for their effort, but I think there are parts of their marketing program that are compelling and thought provoking. They took the concept of the "branded website is dead" and took a shot at what that might look like.

    So the question is how could the parts of this marketing program that worked be executed on by brands not in the candy business? I believe there are many and will continuing exploring this as time goes on.

    Tuesday, May 5, 2009

    If The 60's Had Twitter

    Found this JoyOfTech.com cartoon via All Things Digital newsletter. For those who lived through the 1960's or just enjoy the history around that tumultuous decade, the following cartoon is fun and funny. Enjoy:

    Monday, April 27, 2009

    UGA Technology for the Turnaround: Event Summary and Twitter Definition

    It was a wonderful, warm spring day in Athens, GA for the University of Georgia, Grady College, New Media Institute, Technology for the Turnaround event on April 25, 2009. Dr. Shamp did an outstanding job motivating the Professors, Students and Educators to come up with new, innovative ideas on how to change University Education now and in the future. I am very grateful to him for including me in this event.

    As part of the day, we were asked to come up with a definition for a word provided by Dr. Shamp around a given topic area - Social Media, Gaming, Mobile, Music, Advertising and Video. We then presented our definitions during the "Crowdsourcing the Future: Snackable Prophecies" section of the day. My word was Twitter as part of the Social Media topic area and here was the definition I gave:

    "Twitter - A Social Web, open communications platform and ecosystem that enables the creation of an infinite number of services and information resources by innovative individuals and groups. It also enables users the ability to deliver, consume, share, search and analyze information in real-time, participating in an open culture, unencumbered by geography or time. With every new, public message or "Tweet" value is derived by all exponentially."

    The topic area discussions were lively and we all had to invest in a portfolio of topic areas. I invested my 300 UGA Dollars in the 60%/40% split Mobile/Gaming venture fund. However, I would have been more excited if one of the venture teams had put at least 10% into Social Media.

    The UGA New Media Insititute Certificate Program Student Capstone projects were also thoughtfully presented. Each team developed an integrated, new media solution to solving a business problem. They all used a mashup of mobile, video, music and innovative access and delivery methods. Here are the projects:
    • The Neighborhood: Mobile Audio Blog - A mobile, hyperlocal audio blog that leverages locally knowledgeable individuals like Starbucks Baristas to provide content. Uses Utterli group messaging service.
    • ITwilight: Mobile Guide to the Athens Twilight - This mobile service could also be used for Football games and other large scale atheltic or artistic events. Provides information on closest restrooms, navigating traffic, and food as well as other necessity information for successfully attending a major event.
    • ListenUpLocal: Mobile Local Music Programs - This mobile service provides information on local bands, gigs and concerts. Delivers behind-the-scenes videos and interviews. The artist they used to demonstrate the service is a local Athens, GA, Grady College student - Allison Weiss (@allisonweiss) - BTW: she is an excellent musician, do check out her work on YouTube and at her website.
    Jennifer Dorian, Senior Vice President of Network Strategy and Brand Development, Turner Entertainment Networks presented on the topic of Innovation for the Turnaround. Here is a background article from the Atlanta Constitution Journal: Rebranded TNT Ignites Career Success. She felt it imperative to focus on small, marketing and new media experiments and tests, find the winners and grow from there. Do not invest too much otherwise the ROI becomes unachievable. I enjoyed her insights and the TNT Meta Tag project is an amazing case study in starting small and building up a revenue stream before extending a project or program too far.

    Here are the relevant articles that Dr. Shamp had us read prior to attending the event and a couple that have come out since. These are all relevant to the ongoing discussion on how University Education must change for the benefit of all in the future.

    Dr. Shamp is also proposing a new major at the UGA Grady College: Digital Mass Media Major. Makes me want to go back to school...wish this was available when I was in college.

    Overall a fantastic day and event. We need more interaction like this between University and College Educators, Students and Professionals. Crowdsourcing ideas are the beginnings of bringing out the best in all of us.

    A special and sincere thanks to Lizzie Azzolino (@lizazzolino) and Lindley Curtis (@Lindley), Grady College students, who introduced me to Dr. Shamp and got me involved in this effort.