Wednesday, December 29, 2004

How big companies can seem more personal

I recently wrote a blog post over at my Personal Blog where I opined that most customers don't know the CEOs of consumer companies they deal with, and really don't care what kind of guy the CEO of a company is...they care about their own experience with the products or services they've purchased.

There are exceptions though. There are companies, even large ones, that manage to inspire loyalty based on a personal feeling of connection to the company and its leaders...and the ways those leaders think and behave.

What made me admit this: Apple's home page has been changed to provide links to relief agencies in the wake of the Asian earthquake/tsunami disaster.

OK, call it a shameless ploy to inspire positive PR if you like.

But Micorosft didn't do it.
Intel didn't do it.
IBM didn't do it.
HP didn't do it.
Sun didn't do it.
Motorola didn't do it.
Oracle didn't do it.
Halliburton didn't do it (and God knows they could use the good PR.)

Apple did it, and it is part of what makes them feel different than other large companies.

Good for them. I bet Apple employees and Apple users like me feel good about that association right about now.

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

For Women Only: Next LIFT workshops lined up

My next two LIFT workshops are all set.

Tuesdays in February:
Design and Achieve Your Goals
Starting Tuesday, February 1st, 2005 from 6:30-8:00PM
At Kaiser Permanente in Santa Clara, CA
More Details and RSVP

Mondays in March
Workplace Communication Strategies
Starting Monday, March 7th, 2005 from 6:00-7:30PM
At ALZA in Mt. View, CA
More Details and RSVP

Both workshops are four weeks long, which is a new, more efficient length. I think four weeks is long enough to get in the critical information, but short enough that anyone who signs up will most likely be able to attend all of the session.

Both workshops are the kind that provide lots of lightbulb moments, and I'm looking forward to meeting new groups of exceptional women.

Presenting on Blogging for the EBIG Blogging SIG

Turned in my slides yesterday for a presentation I'll be giving to the EBIG Blogging Special Interest Group.

Basically I'll get a full 90 minutes to discuss my credo that blogs are not a revolution unto themselves, but rather a new tool that helps companies improve the economics and efficiency in accomplishing their marketing, PR, customer service and/or project management goals.

One of my positions is that most companies can be convinced to use an efficient, economic and creative tool. Not so many want to use a disruptive, revolutionary technology. By positioning blogs as the former, rather than the latter, blogvangelists can help blogs spread faster into the corporate environment.

I'm pretty satisfied with the presentation, because I've added screen shots of real live companies out there who are using blogs for these creative purposes. Those companies are still way in the minority, but they exist, and provide excellent back-up to my contentions.

So, if you're able to make it to Concord on Tuesday January 4th, come check out my presentation: "Blogging: another tool in the corporate arsenal"

Details here.

Monday, December 27, 2004

Tracking blogs like any other P.R.

From MarketingVox: Bacon's has announced it will start tracking blogs for its clients, along with all of the other PR sources they track.

Not a moment too soon.

I have written before that any reasonable company and business owner should be paying attention to what kind of information is out there on the Internet about them. I have Google Alerts and feeds from BlogDigger, PubSub and the like on both my name and my company name.

That is how I found this blog post mentioning me and my company yesterday. I had commented on the blog, and sure, I might have eventually gone back to see if any further comments had been written, but with the alerts I have in place, I instead found that Anne Stanton, blogger and President of the Norwich Group had written a post about my comment and the benefit of meeting like minds via blogs.

But, it's not just all warm and fuzzy out there in the virtual world of Internet sites, blogs, use groups and the like. This NY Times [reg. req'd.] article about "Determined Detractors" presents the flip-side: finding out who's dissing you, letting you potentially nip it in the bud.

So, good for Bacon's. And if you're already tracking your own web presence, good for you too.

Saturday, December 25, 2004

Happy Holidays from Worker Bees

It's a slow week whether you celebrate Christmas or not, so I wish everyone a week with more relaxation than usual, more time off the computer than usual, more time connecting with friends and family than usual, and more peace than usual.

Now, off to wrap presents! (And eat too much.)

Happy New Year! Here's to 2005 being the year of Worker Bees everywhere!

Marketing is a "Subtle and Essential Art"

People tend to talk a lot about Microsoft's Channel 9 Blog Community, but Sun has its own Blog Community, and thanks to Microsoft's Scoble for pointing me to this lovely and brief defense of the art of marketing from a Sun blogger, Masood Mortazavi.

His focus on the "art", plus my focus on the "craft", adds up to a pretty good rationale for being a marketing-driven company.

In my humble marketing-driven opinion, of course.

Friday, December 24, 2004

Some validation for my "blogging is only a tool" credo

I've blogged about this many times.

And here.
And here.
And here.
And here.
And here.
And here.

Now Anne Stanton from the Norwich Group spends some of her blog bandwidth discussing the very same declaration. her approach is a tad different than mine. I ten to say blogging is a tool to perform Functions x, y or z. She's saying blogging is a tool to accomplish goals a,b or c.

What am I talking about?

Well, I say blogging is a marketing tool, or a project mgmt. tool, or a PR tool, or a customer service tool.

She says blogging is a tool to differentiate yourself from your competition (falls under marketing) or to establish industry expertise (also marketing) or to communicate with email-wary customers (falls under customer service.)

But it appears to me that we are both saying the same thing: there is no goal for or purpose to a blog that is a revolutionary goal or purpose. This is a very efficient and economical and evolutionary tool that shouldn't scare anyone.

Thursday, December 23, 2004

The Worker Bees Store is online

Have you heard of

It's an site where anyone can set up a free online store, putting their logo, or their wise or witty thoughts on any number of basic items: tee shirts, sweatshirts, mugs, baby onesies, refrigerator magnets.

Everyone seems to like my company name so much, and I like my logo so much, that I thought I'd create items that said "I'm a Worker Bee" and had my logo.

This could have taken two minutes, but I decided to muck around with my logo, adding and removing text, so it took a couple of hours.

But, seriously, this is a cool thing.

So, check out the Worker Bees store!

Cool idea...IF I can really USE the memory stick.

I have an Audi. I love it. It's a zippy little A4, with a 3.0 litre quattro engine, vroom vroom.

I also loved my Audi sales guy. He was the only sales guy at any of the mid-luxury dealers, from Lexus to BMW to Acura to Jaguar to Mercedes, who didn't look askance at my requirement to not have a leather interior.

The other guys were full of dire predictions about having to order from the factory and waiting 8 weeks, or they didn't offer a non-leather option at all. My Audi guy just went to work finding a car, eventually in Sacto, that met my specifications.

So, I'm a little biased toward Audi. And now they have a Marketing idea that, if they executed it properly, sounds pretty cool.

They're sending select customers from their database USB memory sticks with a brief Audi commercial on it.

Now, here's my question: after viewing their silly little ad, will people be able to use the memory stick?

Cause these little USB drives are all the rage. Anyone who doesn't have one is definitely so not hip, and Audi will be doing a true service to their customer database if they help them become oh, so hip.

Now, if they're just sending out USB drives that you view once (if at all) then toss...that's whack.

But, if they're sending it out and letting you continue to carry it around, using it, with their Audi logo somewhere prominently displayed of course? That's simply fabu.

I must know.

Monday, December 20, 2004

From itvt: An Open Letter to the Cable Companies

As you may or may not know, before I dove into the world of entrepreneurship, I worked in marketing for companies in the cable industry. I often thought that the top cable operators were clueless when it came to marketing. They were still living in the glory days of the past when they had a monopoly. They didn't get that once customers had a choice they would dump the service provider who ignored them when they weren't a customer and made them feel small when they were. They'd find the one who made them feel important, up to and after obtaining their business.

The top cable operators have much the same attitude toward their "partners." And I do mean to be ironic with the quotation marks there. There was very little partnership involved, rather just a lot of ass kissing expected, attempts to commoditize even the most innovative products or technologies and an aversion to actually paying for value. And with an attitude like that, not appreciating when you're getting value, you can be sure they didn't understand how to deliver value.

Since I left the full-time employ of this industry I have said repeatedly that cable will lose. That's right, just lose. There is no reason to use cable for basic video services. Satellite is cheaper and better quality. Cable had the edge on high speed data, but they believe in actual anti-Marketing moves to make sure that if a customer leaves them to get video somewhere else, the cable ops will practically push them into someone else's arms for data services too. And DSL will get more bandwidth available and more ubiquitous accessibility. Then watch out, either on their own or in partnership with satellite companies, the telcos will eat cable's lunch. The only place where cable might have an edge is in apps where interactivity is really required: video-on-demand, networked PVR, things like that. But you need content for such an interactive service, and they hate to pay for anything. And when you don't want to let your "partners" make any money/ guess what, they go out of business or stop investing in innovation for your market segment.

I still follow the industry, and even do the occasional side marketing project for my old cable buddies, and I like to keep up with the digital video and interactive TV market by receiving the Interactive TV Today email newsletter (and BTW, yes, I do wish they would move to an RSS format.)

This week they featured a really priceless piece of Op-Ed writing. And since they don't provide web links, I am reproducing the piece here. If you're interested in this market, I do recommend subscribing to the newsletter of course.

This letter really says it all, skewering the hubris of the cable ops, and their short-sightedness.

"Op Ed: An Open Letter to the Cable Industry--From the CEO of a VOD Content Company

As CEO of a prominent video content provider, I was honored to be invited to your offices recently to discuss being a part of your video on demand offering. We know how important VOD is to cable. In fact, to hear your CEO talk, one would think that VOD is the solution to most of the world's problems.

But the trip back home was even more rewarding. I don't think I ever laughed so much. Dot-com business models are back, and they reside in your office. You wanted to deploy our entire library but did not expect to pay a single cent for that privilege.

What's more, you stated that you would also prefer that we not charge customers directly for our shows. Oh, and you don't want us to use advertising inside on-demand shows. Essentially, you want us to give you video content for free--without any possibility of making money--so you can sell digital cable! Oh wait. You don't want our content for free; you want us to pay for encoding and transport too. Is there anything else we can do to sweeten the pot for you?

Let me get this straight. By your own accounts, you've spent $80 billion upgrading your infrastructure to digital. Now you're getting clobbered by satellite; telcos are rushing into the video business at breakneck speed (picking up your executives along the way); you're losing billions to churn, while your service is so compelling your customers would actually rather spend their entertainment dollars driving to a video rental store or waiting every month for DVD's in the mail.

You make it clear that the key to winning in the digital onslaught from satellite and others is in offering video on demand, and in providing great, compelling content. You see lots of revenue potential in VOD to recoup your investments, and you are moving full speed ahead.

We all agree. Digital cable is wonderful, and VOD is amazing. You would think it would sell itself. How about giving it all away for free? What's that? You don't want to give away your product for free? Well neither do we. In fact, the entire content-production industry is insulted you think you can even ask. What intoxicating vanity you must have.

"Free VOD" is a valid marketing strategy to be sure. But, while NBC provides their channel free to consumers, Tom Brokaw and the cast of ER expect to be paid.

Years ago, "on cable" was slang for infomercials and "Wayne's World"-style public access shows. Of course, pioneering networks and content companies changed all that--despite the repressive business tactics of the MSO's, I might add. People subscribed to cable not because of the pipes but because of the content. Oh, and you're quite welcome.

So, if I understand it correctly, the strategy now is to dump as much content as you can get for free onto VOD--tens of thousands of hours. This reminds me of the theory about 10,000 monkeys producing Shakespeare. Throw enough product out there and someone is bound to buy it: No sense in trying to actually understand what your customers want, and no sense in starting now.

That's quite a marketing strategy you got there. I am sure Wharton MBA students will be reading about it years from now, enshrined in case studies next to marketing success stories from New Coke to Michael Dukakis.

Thanks, but we have audiences who are excited about our content and gladly pay a premium. In fact, they are already paying lots of money for this content. Too bad you won't see any of that money. But thanks for the free entertainment at your offices. Keep waiting by the phone for those VOD profits. Meanwhile, hold on to your Netflix stock and keep an eye on the telcos--because that's where I will be tomorrow.

The CEO of a VOD Content Company.

(Editor's note: [itvt] has confirmed the identity of the author of this opinion piece, who wishes to remain anonymous, and who says that the piece "represents the sentiments of dozens of my peers in the content industry." If you have strong opinions on the issues raised in the piece, or if you wish to submit an op ed of your own on this or any other topic, please email us at

Sunday, December 19, 2004

"I will never use another car rental company"

Pretty strong statement, don't you think?

But that's exactly what I heard from some friends in San Diego yesterday...unbidden they told us the story of why Enterprise will forever be their car rental company of choice.

I won't tell you the whole story. I will tell you what I heard when they told it:

1. The customer deserves to be treated with respect.
Even when things go wrong or situations get sticky, the customer deserves your even more than that...the customer deserves friendly, respectful service. A stressed out customer can be brought down off the ledge with a smile, an apology or a promise to take care of a problem.

2. Employees that feel empowered to adapt to a customer's circumstances give better customer service
A company that focuses on respect for the customer is great. A company that focuses on respect for the customer and their own employee is even better. Rules are rules, and there's usually a reason behind every rule, but knowing when to bend them and knowing you have the power to do so makes a truly customer-centric employee.

3. Communication is key
Let's say you're that rule-bending, customer-centric employee. All that fostered good will be for naught if the customer shows up the next day, and no one else knows what the hell is going on. Communication makes sure the customer's experience is seamless. It's the difference that means they won't associate their good experience with one employee, but rather with an entire company.

Enterprise helped our friends out when they were in a jam. They went out of their way; they bent the rules, and they did it all with a smile on their face and a quick "no problem at all" in response to grateful thanks.

Our friends will never use another car rental company, and after hearing their story, I may never use another ne either.

Tuesday, December 14, 2004

More women than men blog...surprised?

I know I was.

Then again, how would we know when most blogging references in the mainstream media fall more along the lines of this Newsweek article?

Reading this, you picture bloggers as a creepy group of self-absorbed, self-referential and, let's face it, self-reverential techno-geeks who've found the one place on earth where they are kings of the hill. Reading this, you imagine the writer to be the kind of guy who would still think of Bill Gates or Steve Wozniak as geeks above all else...not savvy businessmen, entrepreneurs or philanthropists.

OK, I can certainly understand where the writer may have gleaned some of the dismissive comments in his article. But isn't a journalist's job to dig a little deeper?

And of course, it wouldn't have hurt the guy to find a woman blogger to talk know...since more than half of bloggers are women.

Saturday, December 11, 2004

Worker Bees Site of the Week: How to be Content-Free and Buzzword-Compliant!

This week's site of the week is actually an article of the week.

A little piece from on how marketing speak is often meaningless, cliched and off-putting to anyone who isn't a marketing person.

What makes me shudder is knowing how often I used those very words in my high tech marketing life.

One salient point is that many of these buzzwords, on their own, without context, have no meaning to anyone not living inside your head.

"Powerful" "Scalable" Flexible"

You may know exactly what those words mean when discussing your new networking processor solution...but nobody else probably does. Those words probably make them think of going to the gym and working out.

Brief article, but sure to set off some deep self-reflection.

Friday, December 10, 2004

iTunes Music Store Now Accepts PayPal

More than cross-promotion, this announcement nods in the direction of customer convenience over customer control. It's not a huge deal, but it gives potential customers that extra flexibility, that extra choice, that extra anonymity even.

Apple has really done more in the past year or two to broaden their appeal than in their entire history. And it's geared more towards average customer friendliness than appeasing the techno-geeks.

Yes, yes, it's just awful that the format for iTunes Music Store only works on an iPod, to industry people who care about that. But most people just don't care. They have an iPod; it works with their iPod...what they docare about is that it works on PC or Mac. And yes, it does.

Frankly, I think if you leave aside the grousing of certain people who will never be made happy by anything except completely open everything that nobody makes any money on, Apple is doing a good job of servicing the potential digital music addict.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

A Rave Letter to the Editor about my last Metro column

This one, about my 12/1/04 column, is so amazing that I'm not going to just give you the link, I'm just going to re-print the Letter here...and I swear I do NOT know this person!:

Viva Veggie!
I would like to commend Metro for its excellent column, Silicon Veggie. This is a column that I have really enjoyed and appreciated, especially this month's article "A Christmas Tale" (Dec. 1st.) I have found Ms. Camahort's columns to be entertaining, informative and reflective. This month's was a nice reminder to everyone, vegetarian and omnivore, the the holiday spirit of loving and caring should be carried over into every day's activities and our general lifestyles.

Thank you again for the wonderful; publication and this exceptional column. Please keep it coming!
Angela Obeso, San Jose

Good advice on getting your email read

Saw this little email pet peeve list on one of the political bloggers I read and thought it was relevant to us here at the Worker Bees blog.

Now some of these are blogger specific, like not suggesting a link for publication that is already there on the blog...shows you're not paying attention...and it happens to me all the time.

But some of them align quite nicely with my own pet peeves.

My pet peeve #1 from the list: lack of context.
People send a link, an article, a newsletter and don't tell me what's relevant or interesting about it. I'm not a big fan of reading things onscreen to begin with, so the likelihood I'll make it through some long missive if i don't know what the pay-off is? Pretty slim.

No subject lines are bad, as is sending a mail with an attachment, but forgetting to attach the attachment. (But I'm sure we've all hit the 'Send' button a little too quickly on occasion.)

Now these are all good pet peeves.

But then there is a whole other topic: getting your email through to the intended recipient, so he has a chance to read or reject it at all.

Making it through the gauntlet that is the spam filtering agents for both ISPs and email clients.

Tough one. No BCCs, avoiding certain words, not too many recipients etc. etc.

I'll try to find a good article about that topic to share.

Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Client gets the value of consistency in customer relations!

I have been happily blogging away for 42nd St. Moon for the last several months.

Their current show, which starts previews tomorrow, is "Once Upon a Mattress." And it is starring an actual theatre celebrity, Ms. Lea Delaria. She's a diverse performer...a comedian, a chanteuse, a Broadway star...and no less important to this San Francisco audience, a queer icon.

Consequently the show is selling out, without doing any online advertising, without offering any great promotions.

So, the instinct of the Managing Director's instinct was not to offer any blog reader discount, as we had done for the prior two shows. She didn't need to.

I made a pitch that to build a loyal, faithful blog readership over time, and to convert every reader into an audience member regularly, you had to offer consistency. They had to feel that they got some inside benefit from following the theatre on a daily basis. "limit the offer" I said, "but make an offer."

And, unlike some clients I had in the past, she got it, and she agreed.

Now, it is limited.

Tomorrow only, from 11am -6pm, blog readers can call the box office and order tickets for any regular weekday performance for only $20.

That's right, you have a 7 hour window to get your discount.

But, hey, I calendared it this weekend when Sting tickets went on sale, and ordered at 10:01 am to get the seats I wanted. And in the theatre world, Lea DeLaria is just a little like a rock star.

The point is: if you read 42nd St. Moon's blog you truly have inside access...not just to what's going on behind the scenes, but to offers no one else is getting.

A client who understands the long-term strategy of building customer loyalty?

I like it.

The Line Between Evangelists and Shills

I've already discussed the idea of paying bloggers to talk about a product, as cooked up by Marc Canter and Marqui (which I recently discovered is headed up by a former boss of mine!)

It wasn't so much an ethical problem I had...I assumed bloggers who didn't own up to their shill status would get found out and roundly mocked by the blog community.

I thought the idea had practical problems as a marketing tool, briefly these:

From my original post:
You are incented to speak highly if you truly want ongoing revenue.
You run the risk of losing your revenue stream if you speak badly about a product.
You run the risk of being considered a shill by your readers if you speak highly of it.
You run the risk of losing your revenue stream when you've lost enough readers to make you not an influencer anymore.
Sounds like a vicious cycle to me.

It's all kind of a moot point. I'd have to say Marqui has generated a lot of buzz about themselves simply by initiating this program. The fact is that even if someone goes and looks them up to see what jerks would sully the blogosphere in this way. they're still going to find out something about Marqui's product, which they may have never otherwise done.

And the idea has helped CEO Stephen King and Marqui become a finalist for the Fast Company fast 50, which also might never have considered them if they hadn't made such a buzzable marketing decision.

I'd say Marqui will get their money's worth from the campaign, no matter what the bloggers say about their product and no matter whether any purchases are made because a blogger gave the product a good product review in their blog or not.

This Sunday's NY Times Magazine featured a story on a different kind of attempt to manufacture buzz, the kind pitched by the company [Registration required.]

This is another idea that walks the line between encouraging word of mouth influence and simply spinning out shills.

In each case, what pushes someone from evangelist to shill is transparency.

Now, I evangelize plenty. I'm a TiVo-vangelist, an iPod-vangelist, a Blog-vangelist. I love to talk about my digital camera, about my Merrell clogs. Hell, I review every book I read, every DVD/movie I watch etc. in my blog. I'm all for evangelism.

But I think it's important to give people the background. I didn't know a former boss of mine ran Marqui when I wrote my original post on the Marqui idea. But now I know, so I divulged it up in the first paragraph of this post. I don't think it changes what I write about the idea at all. But I still think you'd like to know.

What disturbs me about the NY Times article about BzzAgent is how they actually encourage lack of transparency, which, if we're not being polite, is simply called lying in other circles.

Calling book stores pretending you don't know the name of the book?

Using talking points given to you by the company?

Talking about an eye cream at your grandfather's funeral?

It all sounds pretty icky if you ask me.

And it gives buzz marketing, which after all is part of Worker Bees' deal, a bad name.

Some other blogs commenting on this topic:

You can just do a Feedster search and find literally hundreds of posts. (See what I mean about the fact that simply establishing the program did the marketing job they were looking for.)

Clickable Culture Really Hates the Marqui Program

Marqui is collecting its own page of links on the "controversy" (and apparently knowing the CEO does not earn me a spot on their controversy page...jeez!)

And Stowe Boyd of Corante has been discussing it a lot on his Get Real blog: here and here.

There's also plenty of links to be found on Feedster discussing the BzzAgent story, of which my favorite may be this one from Gawker.

Enjoy the smell of controversy in the morning everyone!

Saturday, December 04, 2004

Ahead of my time? Should I dive back in?

Early this year, when creating the concept behind Worker bees, I was surprised to find very little in the way of helpful, up-to-date books covering the topics of online buzz marketing, blogging, online community building etc. I wasn't interested in a book that told me how to create a blog, or how to use a blog for self-publishing. I wasn't interested in a book that talked about a utopian blogging society. I was interested in a practical book about how you can use blogs and other online tools for marketing and customer communication.

I thought there ought to be a book.

So, I met an author friend for coffee, mostly to get his ideas on how you pursue such a small germ of an idea. He gave me more than that; he gave me his agent's phone number. What ensued was the writing of a "mini" book proposal, which then blossomed into a full book proposal, which she shopped around. I did get a nibble from Wiley, but they asked me to write a Marketing Plan for the would I help promote and sell it?

Without much guidance as to what they were looking for, and in fact with no knowledge of what promoting a book would entail, I did my best. The agent passed it on with no comment, and the Wiley guy passed. Not enough "tangible" examples of how I would promote the book.

Which still doesn't mean much to me, given my lack of publishing industry knowledge.

Now, not one, but two prominent blogger-types are discussing writing a 'blogging for business'-type book.

Scoble: Microsoft Blog Guru

Jeremy Wright/Ensight


Of course, when it comes to "tangible" methods of selling their book, both of these guys have a huge readership and name cachet, so you got your tangible right there.

And it sounds like they are focusing on just the corporate blogging thing, while my approach was more about new ways small businesses can leverage online marketing on a very small budget. My outline covered search engine ads, blogging, online community creation and participation. And had little Success Stories associated with each form of low-cost, online marketing effort. So, it was definitely more broad. Of course, maybe that was the problem.

Blogging is so hot, hot, hot right now. I wonder whether I should contact the agent again and see whther she'd re-submit a revised proposal. Not exactly sure how I'd revise yet.

Hmmm. The book idea was so random back at the beginning of the year. But now that I've spent all year writing, writing, writing, it seems more reasonable to consider myself a potential book author.

Just mulling it over. Any and all (constructive) advice welcome!

Friday, December 03, 2004

More on the eBay Blogger

So, I've been following the continuing saga of Jeremy Wright, blogger-for-hire via eBay.

His auction closed, and he can say 'I-told-you-so' to me and other...the winning bid ended up at $3350! For three months consultancy.

Now, I think that's still a steal for the winning bidder, I mean, he's not just going to write a few posts...he's going to examine their business, figure out what sort of blog would achieve their goals (whether they be marketing, support, sales, or project mgmt. goals) and try to get that blog visibility and readership...then train them to take over internally if they care to.

That's a lot of value IMHO.

You can listen to a podcast report on the auction that includes interviews from around the blogosphere, plus interviews with Jeremy on They quote my post on Jeremy's auction in the piece, so I'm getting some hits today from it.

I do wonder, though, why, why do people pronounce my name Eliza (as in Doolittle)? Since I was a kid that has been the single most common mispronunciation of my name.

I wonder if I can record a reverse version of Liza Minelli's theme song and post it as an udio clip on all my web sites:

"It's Elisa with an 'S', not Eliza, with a 'Z'
It's eee, not iii"

etc. etc.

Wednesday, December 01, 2004

December's Silicon Veggie is online

Here it is.

Pet Peeve on Copywriting: Headline Questions That Remain Unanswered

Maybe it's just me. But don't you hate it when someone's headline is a question, and then the entire article doesn't really attempt to answer that question?

My case in point today, an AdWeek column:

Blogs: Fad or Marketing Medium of the Future?

I'll save you from actually having to read it:

1. Some companies have blogs and like it.

2. Some companies/individuals have gotten in a bit of trouble with their blog.

Feel enlightened?

Nowhere does the article comment on the headline question...will blogs endure?

But I will (of course.)

Blogging, yes, I'll say it again, is a tool. The tool will endure and be leveraged by any number of smart companies. Will "blogs" look the same two years from now that they look now?

Sure, some will.

And some will look different.

There will be corporate blogs, and project management blogs, and diary blogs, and Op-Ed blogs and journalistic blogs and PR blogs. Their content, purpose and target audience will vary, but their shared attributes will remain:

1. Immediate and Dynamic

2. Interactive

3. Informal

Wow, I feel like a broken record.

But at least I answered their damn headline question!

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