Archive for the 'Blog' Category



Living a brand rather than seeing it

A brand experience is magnitudes times more valuable than observing a brand.

You experience the Apple lifestyle, you experience the Gary Vaynerchuk brand through his video blog, you experience my brand through this very blog.

Seeing an advertisement at a bus stop just doesn’t compare – however pairing that up with an experience completely changes the game.  A great example is a free ringtone which you can grab via bluetooth from the advertisement which then gives you something to walk away with and experience.

Living a brand is so much more fun, engaging and most of all attractive to others as they want to be a part of it.

Sure it’s not for everyone but those that can master it will reap the outrageous rewards….

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April 30th, 2009

Where’s Ben?

As most of you do not visit the blog and get it via RSS or Email (which is great, thanks for your subscriptions)  I thought I would let you know where I am and where I’m not.

Where I am:

  • Twitter – At @bwagy
  • Facebook Fan Page – (why? I keep my main facebook for personal use, so if you want to friend me on facebook fan page the way to go).
  • LinkedIn

These are the three ways to friend me up and keep in touch.  Email is always preferred but these platforms are the other avenues you can stay in the loop.

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April 30th, 2009

Role Models & the Conventional Path

Of your role models which took the conventional path? Virtually none.

You see following the same path as everyone else is a surefire way to relative mediocrity.  Sure you may do well.  But imagine how much better you could do on your own path.

Think Richard Branson, Bill Gates, Steve Fossett…

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April 29th, 2009

The standardised addon

Everytime I go get Sushi, they say ‘Ginger & Wasabi?’ and everytime I say yes.

I do eat the wasabi but never the ginger yet I always say yes.

A quick poll of everyone else in line before me (three people) they all did as well.

Now I have said no before and other places haven’t offered and you know what? I didn’t feel like I got a good service.

For some reason those two little packets help communicate value.  In fact some sushi places charge extra for it.

The standardised addon has become an essential part of the consumer experience.  

What part of your service has become standardised? Or is there room to standardise something that others don’t? Just a thought.

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April 28th, 2009

The Art of the Twitter Fart

Apparently if you add “the art of’ to a subject title it is viewed a lot more creatively than how to. Who knows. Anyway….

What is a Twitter Fart? It’s a lapse of judgement that results in a misguided tweet that impacts your brand negatively.

Real Estate Agents, Social Media Experts and Wealth coaches are farting all over Twitter and quite frankly ruining the experience. I thought I’d put together a bit of a guide for those using Twitter for marketing to avoid the Twitter Fart.

The key to Twitter (and of course at which I love) is that it constrains you to fit your message in and thus stimulates creativity. You have 140 characters to sell your message. However you don’t really. That is what people miss…

  1. You have 140 characters to get your reader to take action, to click a link, to ask a question, to make a connection. You ARE NOT going to close a sale in a tweet. A series of tweets yes but not a tweet. In your micro message view it as a way or reaching out to shake someones hand, if you’re good enough they will return the handshake and pave the way for a conversation to happen. Then once you have their permission & engagement you can get closer to a sale. Go straight for the sale without building a relationship people will shut you out quick snap.
  2. If you run a freemium based service; use twitter to engage people in the free edition, give them a free ebook, trial, coupons. Use the concept of free to start to build the relationship above.
  3. When you run a competition let the winner pick someone else to also receive the prize in fact let them give it to as many people as they want to tweet. Get them to help you spread your product.
  4. You have 140 characters to ignite a spark, an idea, a curiousity, don’t necessarily answer the questions going on in your readers mind, give them an url so they find the answer. Ie Grab bens latest book The Best Ideas are Free – it’s all abouts ideas’ vs ‘Grab a copy of @bwagy latest book The Best Ideas are Free, download free sample here’. Stop answering the questions for your readers… you are doing them (and you) a disservice.
  5. Remember it is all about branding and consistency, be consistent in your message, do not get angry at other readers, swear, or share whilst drunk (I know but see it all the time). This reflects badly on you (unless you’re a party brand?).
  6. Ask for feedback from your users and actually implement them, thank them publicly for helping you. It helps enhance their status but shows you value their input.
  7. Remember others are always watching. The 1 in 100 rule still applies 100 may read your message and only 1 respond. I often get a ‘hey I read your tweet….’
  8. Always thank people. Do not stop thanking them. If someone takes the time to retweet your tweets, share them, make a comment. Make sure they know you value their input.
  9. Pretending to be mystic, asking airy fairy questions, or hinting at your next product release doesn’t work unless your Apple stop it. People are only going to find that annoying. We don’t love your product as much as you do.
  10. Reward your fans, look after them, keep an eye on what they do and help them spread the word when they need it. A loyal fan is going to spread your message more than you can ever imagine. So try not to burn them!
  11. Use Twitter not in isolation but to reinforce other campaigns, those that spark an interest will spread through your channel, from twitter to your blog to youtube to subscription to purchase. It is a long dance not a short one, so let Twitter boost your other avenues.
  12. Sometimes you aren’t on topic, don’t sweat the small things, we realise there is a real person behind the account.
  13. Frequency of engagement pays off.
  14. Measure, measure, measure! Measure the time of day you release content, visits to your site, conversions, language use vs traffic, number of retweets. You can measure virtually everything. So do so! Once you find something that works focus your energy on that.
  15. Reward participation to stimulate it, offer competitions for best reply or question, or video reply, leveraging the conversations you create achieves coverage in the second tier network.
  16. Second tier is where the real value is. If 100 people read to 1 comment, garnering 5 comments from 5 different people has a potential second tier reach of 2500 people! If I talk to all of my 3000 followers I have a second tier reach of 20 million! Remember someone is always watching.
  17. Measure your time investment into Twitter with Rescuetime, compare vs return over time. Astounding how it changes.
  18. Evry chrctr is vluable, use them wisely. People understand that you don’t need full or proper english. That being said remember this is branding.
  19. Think ahead strategically, what kind of conversations would you like to stimulate? how can you do that or lead a conversation in that manner.
  20. Live Campaigns work best, can you tie in retweets to usteam.tv, where prizes are given out instantly? in a world of instant you can really leverage that.

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April 27th, 2009

Building a Business API

API stands for Application Programming Interface.  A geek term which means you can build a system that uses functions from another (through the API).

Google, Digg, Twitter use APIs to stimulate innovation and really open the platform up.  

Having an API maximises the potential of your service.  Smart on every level: leverage, stimulate innovation, buy out those that work, learn from those that fail…

Arising amongst these purely ‘tech’ services are startups building web platforms that connect the previously unreachable  through their online platform.  Once they are connected innovation can really happen.

Take Mint.com for example, by working with many different banks across the USA and importing their data into Mint they provide an industry standard.  The data is in a centralised location, abides by the same rules and can be opened up.

You see once you have ubiquity across an industry of data abiding the same structured rules you then provide a platform for innovation to happen over the API.

What could you do with Mint transaction data?

Compare spending versus external events (like google news, browsing habits, locality), provide a ‘new’ cashflow management tool, let people check their bank account via twitter or text.

Imagine the possibilities if you can create the same platform model in other industries, a platform for every postshop in the world, connecting all car yards or even every mobile network in the world.

Build a real life business api, open it up, see what happens.

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April 26th, 2009

Smile & Move

This week has been a bit of a video week for me, so I thought I’d share my favourite one, it’s called Smile & Move. Hard to describe, just watch.

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April 23rd, 2009

What are you doing all the way down here? You could:
- View my about page
- Or for first timers the New Here? page
- Or maybe email this to a friend
- Or subscribe to get blog updates