Mark Cuban Interview on Google+

I came across an article by PC Mag interviewing Tech investor, HDNet chairman, and Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban on the newest social network: Google+. He had some interesting commentary on its use of circles to filter your newsfeed.  Contrasting this with the facebook and twitter interfaces which combine all friends, family, business associates, and corporate posts in one continuous stream. The Google+ concept seems like a great user-driven way to cut down on reading unwanted material.

When thinking this through I realized this may be a bad trend in the eyes of businesses that hope to remain relevant by promoting themselves via social networks. As Cuban describes, some circles may be read only intermittently at the users discretion, this could impact the reach businesses may get from their utilization of Google+. On the other hand, users may love it. A positive result would be to force businesses to become more creative in their use of promotions on social media. The healthy competition may deplete poorly run and self-aggrandizing business posts while being a win-win for service-oriented businesses and the customers they serve. We’ll have to see how all of this plays out.

My favorite part of the interview occurs at the end when Cuban goes into why Google+ will not replace Facebook or Twitter. In his opinion it is another extension of the social media pillars:

“Are you enjoying using G+? You appear to be a pretty active user. What do you like (or dislike) about it? 

Cuban: I like it. It’s simple. It’s more techie-driven so you don’t ever have to dumb anything down. Early users are very experimental so it’s fun to learn new applications and approaches. But it has not replaced my use of Facebook or Twitter. I think Facebook is kind of like the big birthday party where all friends from all cliques and also work show up [and] don’t really know one another, but are nice to each other. Twitter is a broadcast medium that is the new PR Newswire. You use it less to communicate with friends than to broadcast to the world what is on your mind, knowing that if the tweet has legs it will get picked up for retweeting and for transmogrification to other mediums (I always wanted to use transmogrification in a sentence).

That said, do we really need another social network? 

Cuban: Yep. Competition makes them all better.”

Read the full article at PCMag.com by clicking here.

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How to Lead and Inspire in Business

Do you ever wonder why most businesses just go with the flow, while an exclusive group always seem to be the innovators? For Example, Why does Steve Jobs at Apple inspire consumers to wait in line for 6hrs to be the first to grab the new iphone off the store shelf?

Watch the following presentation from Simon Sinek to get answers on why some entrepreneurs and businesses Think, Act, and Lead differently than others…

The Future of Social Media: Live Events

Rhode Island Institute of Technology is holding their annual campus “Imagine RIT Innovation and Creativity Festival” this year with a new twist. They are attempting an experiment with Social Media technology that will focus the power of live virtual updates and citizen journalism with face-to-face interaction. They expect approx. 20,000 attendees at the event showcasing presentations, demonstrations, exhibitions and research projects by RIT students. Large screens will be unfurled with scrolling tweets, status updates, and microblogs allowing passers-by to keep abreast of the hottest attractions of the event.

I thought this could be an interesting new trend to capitalize on at future events for businesses of all sizes. We’ve all been to sporting events or seen television broadcasts that encouraged viewers to participate by sending in text messages that would scroll across the screen or jumbotron. RIT is taking this concept to the next level, integrating all aspects of social media into the conversation, while at the same time allowing participants to come in contact with those normally-anonymous online personalities. An interesting development, for sure.

Read the full article here.

Sustainability to be Focus of Fortune 50 Social Media Campaigns in 2011

Over 80% of executives at Fortune 50 companies plan to promote and increase their sustainablity-focused initiatives via Facebook in 2011. This according to a new report titled, “Sustainability 2.0 – Current Trends At The Confluence Of Social Media And CSR, from SLM and Zumer Interactive.” 

This info was revealed last week on brand-e.biz, suggesting the green movement hasn’t lost as much steam as some had thought.

The research also found that Twitter is a magnifying glass for promoting corporate sustainability initiatives, and that corporate investment in the platform will double by 2015. In addition, while sustainability-themed blogging is still a minimal part of the overall blogosphere, the report suggest there is untapped opportunity for companies to engage with bloggers to devise mutual solutions around sustainability issues.

If these firms, informed by their gigantic market research departments, are jumping back on the sustainability bandwagon it may be time for small and medium-sized enterprises to rethink their efforts. As the recession took hold, most were worried about merely trying to stay afloat and green initiatives may have fallen by the wayside. Now that there are hints of an economic recovery, these plans can hopefully get back on track.

Feller Memorial Patch Continues to Earn Rave Reviews

Check out the newest article praising our Bob Feller Memorial patch design! We are so honored to have had the opportunity to work on this project. R.I.P. Rapid Robert. An excerpt of the part of the article pertinent to the patch is below:

The Bob Feller commemorative patch is on the right sleeve, and honestly looks like it was part of the uniform’s design from the start. A stellar tribute and blends beautifully with the new top.”

Read the full article about the Cleveland Indians new road uniforms here.

Social Media and ROI

John Jantsch, founder of Duct Tape Marketing, posted a video produced by the Business Marketing Association updating the classic McGraw-Hill “Man in the Chair” ad. The presentation is thought provoking, and goes to show you that technology, mediums, and tools change, but fundamentals of marketing and selling stay the same. Take a few minutes to view the video below:

Jantsch was inspired to respond to this video after reading a tweet by a fellow marketer suggesting time invested in social media doesn’t pay dividends. “Where’s the ROI?” in other words.

While it is true that without a clear strategy for your social media presence a lot of time could be wasted, the commenter misses the mark. As Jantsch points out, social media in and of itself is not a marketing tactic, it is a platform for communication. And in today’s market, you want to build as strong a relationship as possible with your clients through constant communication.

iLoop’s SlingShot Mobile App Takes on Groupon

A new Mobile app called SlingShot created by iLoop seems like an intriguing new marketing option for small business owners. This app will utilize an augmented reality viewer on smartphones which would scan streets using gps location and photo technology. Once getting an image down a street in your phone’s camera view all the shops on that street that offer deals via SlingShot will pop up allowing the user to interact with those they are most interested in.

The key to this breakthrough is found in this paragraph:

“iLoop’s new offering was created because services like Groupon and LivingSocial help businesses attract new customers, but don’t create brand loyalty or help in retaining customers,” an iLoop spokeswoman says. Additionally, the thinking is because shoppers choose the merchants they want offers from—as opposed to being presented with one randomly every day—they’ll be more likely to respond. “Shoppers get the deals they want to see—not what happens to be the deal of the day,” the company says.

Read the full article on iLoop’s new concept here.

If Groupon can seize this concept before SlingShot becomes as popular they may be able to head this off. Otherwise, watch out for some healthy competition in the deal-seeker web niche.