As its the Cheltenham Festival this week, I’d thought I’d post this great PR stunt from Paddy Power.
You may remember last year they did the Paddy Power ”Hollywood sign” on Cleeve Hill over looking the racecourse. That was truely epic and was always going to be tough to better; but they certainly tried by putting a Jockey on the famous Uffington White Horse in Oxfordshire.
This cheeky Word of Mouth stunt really works! It grabs your attention and gets people talking due to a number of factors; the risks (they didnt get permission), the Irish humour and the grand scale of the project. I cant wait till next year’s stunt!
Let me know what you think?
I’ve just come back from a trip to Brussels and Frankfurt, delivering Collaboration training to some Channel folks within Cisco. I had 60mins to deliver an enthusiastic, meaningful, useful presentation that the audience could take away and use with their customers. I did my best but there is only so much you can do with Power Point; especially when you are the last slot of a very long day.
I really dislike using Power Point. I usually try and follow Guy Kawasaki’s 10-20-30 rule on presenting, especially as my 60min slot usually gets squeezed down to 30mins due to other people running over.
On the way back from the Frankfurt Office to the hotel, I sat in the taxi wondering if my audience had learnt anything. Was this form of delivery the best way for people to develop knowledge? When I was at Microsoft I worked with some great Training Partners constructing a blended learning approach of part instructor led, part self learning with Video, examples and labs. This to me was a better way to learn.
From a personal experience, I started doing a Charter Institute of Marketing (CIM) Professional qualification last year based out of the University of Gloucestershire; in their Business College. I chose this route as I had assumed that the quality of lecturers and content would be the best that I could get. I had also hoped that the CIM would be a modern organisation that pushed the boundaries of education.
I was wrong on so many sides.
We had Power Point slides. Tonnes of them. We also had paper handouts stapled together. It was not a great experience and one that I had a similar experience with back in the mid 90s when I was last at University. How can nothing change in nearly 15years!?
Surely it’s time for Education Facilities to embrace Web 2.0 (or Education 2.0) and allow students to bring their own laptops, tablets, Smartphones and give them access to a course social portal. A portal that includes all the lecture notes, case studies, self learning activity and workspaces for students to engage with others to discuss the relevant topics. The Course Leader could then monitor the site, shape the discussions if required and check on the progress of the student’s self learning in-between lectures.
Young people now, are already fully skilled in collaborative working via Social Media and do not consume knowledge via the more traditional ways. They can multi task a lot better than their parents and get bored if there is only one form of media on offer. By providing a blend of instructor led lectures and self learning you are more likely to keep them engaged and enthusiastic.
If the University of Gloucestershire implements something like that, then perhaps they wouldn’t need to cancel my CIM course due to lack of interest. Just saying..
I’m really bored of Facebook; it just doesn’t give me what I want anymore. I find myself scrolling through lots of irrelevant pointless updates and information that I really could do without. OK, its great for keeping in contact with friends and posting photos, but the activity feed is becoming pointless bar a few exceptions. I know the new “Subscribe” button may improve this but I’m still waiting to see.
I am however, still a huge fan of Twitter. Or more realistically, I am a fan of Tweetdeck. Purely because I can split the people I follow into topic areas, Technology, Social Business, News etc. So depending on what I want to know at a particular time , I can find it or find someone who might know about it. But what Tweetdeck doesn’t do, is make the viewing user experience as pleasurable; I can’t preview photos or links so I’m sure I just skip over a lot that I may be interested in.
This maybe where Google+ will provide the happy medium? Ok, it’s not brilliant yet either, but it seems to be trying to be best both of both worlds. I like their use of circles and huddles so I can decide what information to view and with whom; it seems a more structured way of consuming the vast amount of content that is out there. At the moment thought, the users of Google+ seem to be more of a professional audience and not the GenY or Millennials that Google probably wanted. But is that a bad thing? Not for me.
As someone who is focused on Social Business Collaboration I can’t wait until we see Google+ as part of Google Apps. I’m a fan of software like Yammer and Jive that really allow employees to collaborate better. But it’s the ability to collaborate on documents that really allows social software to really enter the Enterprise. Software like Cisco Quad is where I think Social Business is really headed with the blend of social networking but with the Enterprise ready document management. Google+ will inevitably have this is well, all in the cloud which makes it available to even the smallest company. Then when you add in end to end unified communications such as IM and video, whether its Google Voice or Cisco Jabber, you create the optimal user cockpit for your employees.
Quad, like Google+, will also have the potential of their own Apps Marketplace which will allow 3rd party software vendors to build plugs such as Finance & CRM apps. The outcome of this is that the whole Business can embrace Enterprise 2.0 rather than keeping it in purely a GenY silo. So when Management say that Social Business is just like Facebook, you can be confident that won’t be the case.
Here’s a good video to highlight the need for Enterprises to embrace Social Business.
I spotted another great infographic post from my friend and mentor Eileen Brown over the weekend. As I mentioned in my last blog post, I will shortly be joining Cisco to look after the Channel Development of their Social Computing/Collaboration Platform, Quad. When I try and describe what Quad is to people outside of the Industry, I often say its like Facebook for Enterprise. Not strictly true but at least its a level playing field to start with. However when you say Facebook to some people over 30yrs old they often associate it with wasting time rather than working. But the top half of this infographic really pulls out some reasons why Social (media) Computing will be so important for Businesses going forward. Collaboration, sharing new ideas, team building and the engaging the workforce are great uses of Enterprise 2.0 Social software. Let’s face it, it’s not the Banks that are going to pull us out of the recession, its people like us working harder, smarter and better together that will do it.
If I can go to work without having to sift through 1000 email in my inbox and instead use a Social Collaboration Tool like Quad to help me prioritise what I should be working on, then I know I’m using the Facebook for Enterprise to not waste time.
I really liked this blog post from James Poulter about how the CV was “becoming less and less appealing to HR directors, whose inboxes are filled daily with the word document versions of young hopefuls, applying for graduate schemes and alike. So many are now trying their hand at getting noticed by the powers that be, by using a different set of tools – those being digital, mobile and most importantly social”
As I step away from my role at Microsoft into a new role at Cisco, my focus is moving much closer to Enterprise Social Computing and Blog posts like James reinforces that it is a great move for me. Organisations are changing, not necessarily from Top Down, but from the Bottom Up. As GenY begin their careers, they are brining a social evolution to Corporate Britain which will only gain momentum as time goes by. This infographic may not work for everyone but it sure is more exciting than looking at 2 pages of A4!
This is a nice little infographic that gives some insight into how Foursquare achieved their masive 3400% growth last year. Geotagging still really needs to find its space in the world to go mainstream but the potential is massive! Its not just a modern loyalty card for retailers, its also a way for all businesses to improve their Relationship Management and engage with their consumers.
Just at the weekend I saw that Cheltenham Racecourse was promoting that anybody that checked in there on Foursquare would be entered into a Competition. Hey, its a start and it shows that even the Tweed wearing folks of the Cotswolds can even get involved.
Thanks to @northernboy73 for making me aware of this Infographic
First of all aplogies for posting two similar blog entries. I stumbled across this Gartner Hype Cycle while researching Social Computing earlier today.
I thought it was a little disappointing to see Social Software Suites and Unified Comms/Collaboration sliding down the “Trough of Disillusionment”. I still this as key for both midsize and enterprise organisations; data is too valuable to be shoved into an archived email folder or a folder on a laptop. Portals are fine for some data, but if you cant act on it to achieve your goal then again its wasted. “Knowledge is King”, but if you cant do anything with it you may as well try and tell the Sea to stop coming in.
This is a little old but I saw this again on Twitter this morning and as we are definitely heading into Winter thought I’d post it.
It may kick off some ideas in your heads as the snow comes down in a few months time.
So everywhere you go people are talking about Social Media, if you don’t have a Twitter account you aren’t in the Game. Social Media driven by Gen Y (and younger Gen Xers) is now so mainstream that traditional Media companies like Radio, are having to embrace it. A lot of them are using their scale and reach to encourage tens of thousands of “Fans” to their Facebook page, but are doing very little else to engage them. If like me you believe that Social Communication is all about listening and being interactive then I have a feeling you’ll be disappointed in most of the Radio Shows out there; apart from one.
The Ian Collins Late show is a Radio show on TalkSport which airs Monday to Friday from 10pm till 1am; so not a peak radio slot like Breakfast or Drive time. However what makes TalkSport different from a lot of stations is that they are focused heavily on interaction with their audience. TalkSport make money from Advertisers and Callers to their shows, so Social Media could be seen as a threat to that business. However the Ian Collins Late Show, a news based show, has seen through this threat to create a new channel to communicate with the listeners. The Facebook Page drives topics to be discussed on the show that evening, comments left on them gaging the public feeling. On Twitter Ian drives effectively recruits new followers by sharing pictures and videos of Guests and topics live on the Radio which make the audience feel like they are in a virtual pub. I’ve often had to jump out of bed to turn my smartphone on to see what has been posted. The Upside of this approach is that it seems to be driving more intelligent people to call in to comment, which in turn then makes a better opportunity for Advertisers. The driving force of this Social approach is definitely Ian himself who is a self-confessed Apple Fan boy. Despite this he comes across as a really well balanced guy who loves engaging with people. One look at his Twitter activity clearly shows how much time he spends replying to the mountain of tweets he gets. Social Media is about interaction, the clue is in the title. Those that do get a richer experience.
(Illustration by Hugh MacLeod)