New Tech Tuesday — Presidential Candidates and New Marketing Methods

28 10 2008

I thought it would be appropriate to offer a New Tech Tuesday post that is relevant to the Super Tuesday that is on the horizon. Just a quick observation about the candidate and who is really embracing new marketing methods.  I would have to give Obama a 9 and McCain a 5 on the 10 point scale at this point.

A big score came across last night as I watched an Obama commercial that was typical smear McCain spot…with a new marketing interactive tool.  Obama has his own channel he’s bought on the Dish Network…which has been running continously a program outlining his plan for “change.” To step it up the week before elections I’ve noticed now the Dish Network interactive icon appearing during the Obama commercials encouraging viewers to click the interactive button to hear about his plan for change….McCain channel, ummm not so much.  McCain dynamic interactive new marketing incorporated into his commercials…mmmmm, yeh not so much.

Finally, here is a viral commercial that is customizable…and a funny bit to illustrate how important it is to vote…with another underlying message to vote Obama.  Again, another new marketing tool incorporating user customization, funny news reel YouTube’ish video, viral sharing to your friends, and the groundswell begins.  Check it out the viral custom commercial here.

Breathe In & Vote Out,



Big Technology…poor execution

24 10 2008

Okay, I made the HDTV plunge not long ago.  Got the HD channels on the Dish network, and was ready to live it up in High Definition in the living room.  But wait, what is this?  The HD channels don’t really broadcast everything in HD.  What’s with the aspect ratio, the black bars, and where is the HD consistentcy?  This is what I have seen on HD in the past month,


Now, I have to give credit to ESPN HD.  They tried to adjust for the commercials that weren’t shot in HD.  You get a picture that looks like this:

Which is great if you get this consistently.  There are two things that just drive me crazy with the whole HD world. First, it’s the typical non-standardized technology where everyone has their own little flavor.  Whether it’s the movie house with a custom aspect ratio…or the broadcast channel who doesn’t require advertisers to have HD or a standard aspect ratio on HD shot commercials.  I’m feeling like we’re in the days of format wars…i.e. beta vs. VHS, or the Blue Ray vs. HD DVD.

Second, which is the one that really burns me up as a marketer, brand manager, creative person.  The execution of this technology platform with the big broadcasters is what I would describe as poor.  I would expect an HD channel (which I’m paying a premium for) to have a company behind it ensuring excellence across this high-end technology.  Instead, what I’ve seen is ESPN HD take a half step towards this by branding their name on the side bars for commercials that are not HD.  The half step is very annoying when it goes from the branded sides to just the black bars…who is making the decision to run it on just a select few commercials.  Either make the attempt or don’t try at all.

Then you have other huge networks like Fox.  The Fox HD channel actually had their own show commercials in non-HD running on the HD channel.  Who is making that call?  Wouldn’t you want to at least represent yourself well on YOUR OWN HD CHANNEL.  Shouldn’t some producer/GM over programming make the call to create all self-promoting network commercials in HD?

I understand format wars, technology development, and platform growing pains.  I have a hard time understanding poor execution on a technology platform that is on the cutting edge.  Okay, there’s my 2 cents…in HD 🙂

Breathe In & Smile Out,



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G1 Arrives with iMeem…let’s get ready to rumble!

23 10 2008

Okay, so G1 has arrived and packaged nicely with an exclusive application built in the Google Android open source application language.  What does this mean for the consumer, well it poises them out of the chute with a strong music recommendation/discovery platform with hooks into the Amazon MP3 store (BTW, if you are one of the few people who hasn’t bought Nickleback’s “All The Right Reasons” album you can get it on Amazon for $2 cheaper than iTunes…$7.99 special.)

Will this be the end of the iPhone empire that is well established…hmmm, well time will tell.  I believe the price point will help, but to remain competitive with Apple they will have to really ramp up the product development timeline.  Here is a great comparison on the two phones…in the world of Mobile Phones / Apps, i’d say “game on.”  Let’s get ready to rumble!

Breathe In & Smile Out,


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The Vine Church — Worship In Hong Kong

18 10 2008

I have been on an adventure around the world recently with Jay King.  We met some really cool people that are bringing the gospel to Asia, based in Hong Kong. Check out Jay’s post on them here…the gang from The Vine Church are amazing, God is doing and will continue to do big things through their ministry.  Here is a video of their live worship:


There are two things that don’t change around the world…

1) God’s love for people is the same around the world. In every city, in every region, in every language, in every dark place, and in every light filled area….God’s love for people doesn’t change, and can’t be contained by our conditions.

2) People’s response to God’s call, people’s response in worship to a true God, people’s lifestyle of worship will bring a tangible representation of God’s love that will usher in His Kingdom. That is God’s purpose, for the body…the church to be His hands and feet. To be His real love for a real world that is in desperate need of Him.

Breathe In & Smile Out,


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New Marketing with Ice Cream

18 10 2008

This gives the marketing guru Seth more whip cream for his meatball sundae.  Yes the “new marketing” age has arrived and is now being served at your local Marble Slab Creamery.

I’m impressed that this company has figured out a way to leverage technology in an easy way while serving their community.  I’m sure this will build a tremendous permission asset that will take their direct marketing…and ultimately business to the next level.

From the messaging through the execution this was a smooth and rewarding (yummy) experience.  The billboard said a $1 off text coupon was available for all texting customers.  Once I sent in the keyword, I instantly got two messages back.  The first was a thank you for joining, and an assuring message that I would only receive up to 4 communications per month with valuable coupons.  Then, the whip cream on my ice cream message with the $1 off coupon came through.  I showed it to the cashier, go the dollar off, and was enjoying ice cream moments later.

This is marketing at it’s best.  Talking to your community in a non-invasive, permission based method.  Serving your community with value that ultimately drives sales.  Using a technology that everyone has with them.  Delivering what you promised in a matter of seconds.

I have a new level of loyalty for the Slab.  I may not act on every coupon, but I know I won’t be harassed….and I’ll probably in the end buy more ice cream now as a result 🙂

Breathe In & Smile Out,



I need a plane with modern technology

12 10 2008

Okay, I’m about to sit on this American Airline flight for 9 hours….and this has to be circa 1995 technology. No air control, no monitor on the back of the seat, no power plugs…in fact the arm rests still have ashtrays.

Topped off with 5 ahead monitors (all different colors) that we’ll collectively watch the same programs for the next 9 hours back here in the “cattle” car they call coach :-0

Breathe In & Smile Out,

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And You Think You Have Work To Do…

11 10 2008

In case you were feeling like you were under water, lots of work, too many emails…yadi, yadi, yadi.  Take a look at my incoming message bar,

I don’t know what my inbox is going to look like in about 30 minutes, but my feeling of getting somewhat caught up has just left the building :-0

Breathe In & Smile Out,