I'd go a step further and suggest the creation of an entirely new discipline headed by a director of customer/consumer conversation/dialog. The sole responsibility if this person/department would be to converse and listen to the consumers with no interest in selling product. Sure, product management, marketing, sales and customer service touch this area but not enough to make it effective. Each of those disciplines has a goal that is counter to having an open, honest and friendly discussion with a customer of prospective consumer.
Excellent Idea. The sooner companies talk to people like real people, the better. And weblogs are making us realize this. When you BS, the blogosphere calls you on it, in public. b4 weblogs, people talked smack about companies, but the companies didn't know. It happened in live conversations that companies didn't know about (and probably pretended didn't happen). The game is changing. Only a deaf and blind company could pretend that it doesn't happen now. A knew meaning for the old adage, "The Customer is Always Right" has arrived.
For a quick lesson, see how Jason Calacanis responds to criticism.
Smarter Conversations equals smarter companies. And isn't this obvious to everyone?
Did I Write This?
Do you receive inboxes full of e-mail about your blog?
I know that I do.
I'm not talking about spam either. What I'm referring to are e-mails from your readers.
I like e-mail from my blog visitors. By far, the vast majority of my e-mail is positive in tone. Even most of my critics are polite and constructive with their suggestions.
Some of my best column ideas have been written as a result of e-mails from my readers. Being a helpful kind of guy, I write what people tell me they want to read.
As bloggers, we get feedback from our readers through our e-mail and our commenters. Some bloggers have added forums to maintain even more contact with the blog guests.
Over time, we develop a strong rapport, and often good friendships, with many of our readers. Often, that friendship started with an e-mail about a blog post or link.
Bloggers who send me e-mails, regarding posts or comments or links, are guaranteed to have me visit their blogs on a regular basis. While I am a voracious blog reader at the best of times, my e-mail friends are certain to get their blogs placed at the top of my reading list.
I recommend sending e-mails to other bloggers, as well as posting comments on their blogs. An e-mail provides a different level of communication from a comment. Both are great to receive, but in different ways.
Perhaps, it's the fact that an e-mail is private, while anyone can read a blog comment.
I am always pleased to receive an e-mail from any of my readers.
Even from the people who don't like my blogs at all!
No. Wayne at Blog Business World did. But, i might as well have written it.
I blog because I like to meet new people and have conversations.
I just read this post by Dan Sherman, and I've changed my tagline:
Helping You Get Yours
This is the gist of what drives me:I know if I help people achieve their goals, I'll achieve mine. In personal life. In business. In designing web applications. This is the purpose that drives what I do.
How important is the tagline for your weblog or your business? Do you ever change it? Did you come up with it and stick with it? Doesn't your business change? Shouldn't your tagline?
For posterity's sake, this is what the tagline was changed from: "here's two fingers for you."
I know that is quite different from what I've changed it to. I guess you'll have to be patient b4 you understand where I am coming from and what I am doing, and where I want to go. If you care.
Updates to LinkedIn:
Since you last logged in, 26,500+ professionals have joined your LinkedIn network.
You can now enhance your profile on LinkedIn with the following:
Your education and degrees
Your professional affiliations
Are you a member of an alumni organization or professional group? LinkedIn now offers a special group version of LinkedIn to help alumni and professional groups facilitate networking among their members.
Click here to ask LinkedIn to contact your alumni or professional group about setting up a group.
If you are a leader in your group, then request information about special productivity and networking features that will help members of your organization network more effectively.
Your LinkedIn Team
Looking forward to checking these things out. And it looks like they may be honing in on a business model: selling communications/productivity services to organizations.
This is an idea. I'd like feedback. Positive and Negative.
From time to time, I type the words: event promotion, event planning, event marketing and link to my company's site. I always do this in the context of the post. It is never random "waste your time" posts. The reason I do this, if it isn't obvious, is for search engine ranking. I want both my weblog and my company's site to rank high for those search terms.
And if you haven't heard of the nigritude ultramarine contest and how the blogger, Anil Dash put the SEO-types to shame, read here.
I have a good page rank, as do some of my other SEO friends, but these links, don't have a huge impact on my site's search engine rank for those terms.
So, in the spirit of 'distributed group weblogging activities', I thought I'd throw out the idea that we get together to start a blogging for search engine rank club.
I guess this is similar to googlebombing, but hopefully, we can avoid the negative connotations of that.
So, here is what I am proposing:
We have a decentralized group. I think this thing could be abused significantly (and am not interested in starting a link-farm or link-exchange), so instead of having one person control this, I thought that each member could keep their own email list/blogroll of SEO's that blog and then, trade favors between us. For example, I have a list of several SEO's that I've had email/blog contact with. I could send them a list of sites of people that have traded links with me and then they could do the same thing back. Each member could choose their own level of involvement and post about other member's sites and return favors accordingly. This way, each blogger controls their editorial quality and is not obliged to post to anything they don't want-to.
I am open to all kinds of revisions of this process.
Anyone that is interested in being involved in My Blogger SEO club, let me know.
Update 6/30/04: Looks like this concept could have some legs. Mike Lauher has already started the club. He's linked to WhizSpark using all of the keywords I used above. Thanks Mike. Shoot me an email if you want me to return the favor. Additionally, (coincidentally) Gregory Narain points to an article that points out that 'search engine optimization' is one of the top 4 reasons for a company to blog.
Update II 6/30/04: I've create a search group on Eurekster called: Blog SEO Club - pc4media division Eurekster has search groups that people can join. As the moderator of the search group, I can promote certain results for certain keywords. In other words, if anyone uses my blogger SEO Club search group's filter and searches for event marketing, whizspark.com will show up at the top. Try a search for 'event marketing' now to see.
I want my keyword exchanges to be one on one. And I will only link to people's sites if I have something relevant to say about the keyword. As people contact me or I contact people about exchanging keywords, I will use this eurekster search group to keep track of the keywords that I am exchanging.
If you'd like to initiate this sort of relationship with me, link to WhizSpark with one or more of these keywords: event promotion, event marketing, event planning or a similar variation and then let me know (email = blog name at hotmail) what you'd like me to blog about. I'll record it in eurekster and eventually get around to linking to you.
like whoa.... Isn't NetCreations Bigger? I certainly don't have the numbers, but my general impression was that ReturnPath was a small newish company and NetCreations (especially the businesses that make it up) have been around for a while and are sizable competitor in the email marketing biz.
Anyone informed on this?
Today, we are announcing the big news that my company, Return Path, has acquired NetCreations, Inc. Since there ought to be some small perk for subscribing to a CEO's ramblings on a blog or via RSS, I thought I'd give everyone here the heads up before the news hits the wire tomorrow. (I am fully aware that this is also an excuse for a rare bit of self-promotion, so my apologies in advance.)
And how cool is it that the CEO is blogging about it b4 the news is publishing it?
And Matt, promote away, my man. Don't be ashamed. You are doing good stuff. Tell the world about it.
Check out Matt's blog, Only Once. He is a first time CEO (like me) who is blogging.
Update: Lots More on the merger and the background of the company by Brad Feld. This is so cool that the VCs are blogging all of this. Amazing insight.
For those of you who don't know about it, it is a weekly event, hosted at a new weblog every week. Anyone and everyone submits a post that they'd like included and the host compiles all the submissions into one post. Then everyone, points to the weekly edition from their weblog. It is a great way (for submitters) to get some attention/feedback on one of their posts. And for the host and the submitters to cross-fertilize
I highly recommend you participate next week. As I will be the host. I'll be posting on the morning of July 6th.
Send all submissions for next week to the email address, capitalists -at- elhide.com. Messages sent to that address are being forwarded to me. Do not send submissions to my hotmail address.