Monday, October 29, 2007

Hoos TV

I haven't placed much of my broadcast work on this blog. This summer I had the opportunity to co-direct (with UVA's Rob Smith) a few new image spots for The University. If you're watching any UVA Football or Basketball this year, you'll be seeing these.

Go Hoos!

UVA Faculty:

UVA Students:

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Riding the HughTrain

I ran way behind on work yesterday as I had the good luck/bad luck of having a trip canceled last minute - but I was able to sneak in to the Online Marketing Update @ Darden and meet both Rick Klau of Google (né Feedburner), and Hugh MacLeod of Special for me as I had the good fortune to work with Feedburner prior to the Google acquisition, and Hugh's blog is a daily read of mine. Both gave great talks, and Rick's overview of RSS - in a sophisticated, "what it means to your brand" context, dovetailed quite elegantly with Hugh's discussion of the Social Object in the context of marketing and, more importantly, customer relationships.

First point observed: being a cartoonist really spices up your PowerPoint.

Second point observed: don't assume that your audience understands RSS, and don't go too deep in attempting to explain the technology. When necessary, set aside four minutes to show your audience the wonderfully simple video, RSS in Plain English.

Next point (from both speakers) is the importance and benefit of being engaged in the conversation with your customers. This resonated with me, and the work we’ve been doing with PodSquad, because I grew up watching my father foster first-name relationships with his customers in his retail clothing stores; Rick realizes (and demonstrated) the value in continuing this practice in the online medium, and Hugh detailed the successes his clients and partners have experienced doing the same.

Hugh abstracted the concept of the "Social Object", which he explains, in my opinion, as clearly as can be done. Where Hugh is gaining traction in this theory is in the thesis of his talk: "Web 2.0 was invented circa 1917 in the South Pacific". His point isn’t 1917 – it’s that this is when modern anthropologists began documenting the importance of interpersonal relationships. In the marketing world, it boils down to very personal commercial interactions – in other words, every relationship is personal.

So this takes me to the next step and, likely, what will be the next entry here: how, exactly, does podcasting play into all of this? Not to mention another question was raised in one of our sessions: what makes a good podcast? I think they are one and the same: I/we were optimistic at the outset of this endeavor that this medium (the social web), and the podcast audience, represent an opportunity to return marketing communications (especially of a multimedia nature, which is simply our specialty) to the honest conversation of the most primitive commercial interactions. It gives both parties a chance to learn and to do better, and to participate in a Virtuous Circle of growth.

We still haven't asnwered the question that applies to PodSquad though: What makes a good podcast? I have some thoughts on that and would be happy to include yours.