Monday, January 28, 2008


Not that many people are watching TV nowadays but if you are, pay attention to the commercials played. Why would anyone want to do that? Well, if you do view, you will see how commercials have changed in their look and feel. Company logos have “reflections”, some share iPhone music, but mostly what I see are products being advertised using 2.0 practices. The most noticeable ones are Pepsi and the NFL.

The second wave of the web has transformed businesses, it’s apparent. Companies are selling and promoting their products much differently than they did 5 years ago. Social media has had a significant impact on marketing and the way people interact with a product. Who doesn’t have a blog? BK is using “Punkd” to show how consumer react when they are told the Whopper is no longer on the menu.

When a blue chip company like Pepsi changes their advertising to reflect the new web, we have reached a point of no return. Advertising will continue to be shaped using social media and how users interact with the new web but most importantly, it means the new web is here and nothing going forward will be the same.

Mindsets have changed.


Monday, January 14, 2008

Develop for Everyone

When you envision your products and who will use them, do you take into account how much technology your users may have at their disposal? Are you relying on social networks to carry the brunt of your “marketing” efforts? These questions came to mind when I was at the Web Innovator’s Group Small Dinner, “The Secrets of Social Network Platforms” last week.

As I heard TripAdvisor and Stylefeeder talk about “initial user reactions”, “fun vs. utility”, and “growing users”; I started to wonder if this data could be skewed, seeing that most of their marketing efforts were targeted at Facebook users.

Social network users are not average technology users, I believe them to be medium to high tech users; those with mobile phones, mobile web access, heavy texters, who use multiple web applications and most importantly, have an ear to new products as they are discussed within a social network.

If you are using social networks to carry most of your product message and are only creating products that require users to have a heavy technology understanding, aren’t you leaving out potential users?

When you are creating your next product, don’t leave out those who are unfamiliar with social networking or technology. Create products that you and your mom use because when you build for everyone, it only increases the chances your product will reach critical mass sooner vs. later.

What kinds of products do you think could/would accomplish this?


Monday, January 7, 2008

Back in the Saddle Again...

Back in the Saddle Again…

It’s a new year and for the first time in three weeks, I’m updating my blog. I noticed other bloggers left “out of blogging” messages and probably should have done that but I didn’t. Next time I’m out for more than a week, I’ll let you know ahead of time.

My first post of the year is a “this is what I did during vacation” school report thing, so here we go.

I started off with an excellent get-together at betahouse. John, Brian, and Colin threw a great party with plenty of conversations, good company, and most importantly, it allowed me to get to a relaxed point quickly. Jon Resig was telling me all the goodness that he’s up to with jQuery. I spoke with Chris Keller of Fafarazzi and he had me rolling with a couple of one liners. I spent most of my time speaking with Dave Cutler of eatmedia and Mark Doerschlag of Marks Guide about the New England entrepreneur/business scene. We agreed on an area need and left with some action items. As we move forward I’ll be sure to update on our activities.

After that event it was time to prepare for Christmas. I hadn’t done any buying up to this point and usually I’m done but this year I was too busy to get it done. As much as I hated to do it, I did the traditional buying method, “I went to the mall”. That was a headache…next year I’ll find the time to do my shopping online like I typically do.

Christmas morning was a blast. Santa was great to my children and it was a pleasure to watch them opening their gifts. To see their faces when they opened a cool or gift they really wanted. You could see the “joy” it brought them…when is the last time that has happened to you?

My wife and I hosted Christmas dinner at our house and boy was that fun. It was the first time and if we ever do it again, we’ll need better preparation.

At the beginning of the New Year we hosted our 3rd Annual Ginger Bread Making party for the neighborhood kids. We started this a few years ago as a way to welcome in the New Year with the families on our street. This year we added some adultness to it and had wine and spirits. The parents and kids enjoyed themselves and that is all we hoped for.

To top off vacation, my son and I took some snowboarding lessons. I’ve only skied throughout the years but since my son wanted to learn snowboarding, I decided to do it with him. I picked it up quickly and was cruising the bunny slopes with ease on the first day. I fell more than a few times and my body felt it for a couple of days afterward.

So all in all I had a great time off. I got to do some networking, learned something new, spent time with my family and most importantly refreshed myself for 2008.

I’m looking forward to another exciting year.