Categories
cardiff creative creative industries Entrepreneurship future geek ignite interesting internet music Music Industry myspace passion quote twitter wales web 2.0

Passion, perseverance, and stuff


I saw the film Anvil a few nights ago. It’s a documentary about a rock band who, thirty years on from being on the verge of greatness, are living in near-obscurity and decide to give it one last push before giving up for good. It’s an absolutely brillant (and hilarious) film and I was incredibly touched by their perseverance, their passion and their lust for life. And it reminded me that perseverance is that rare quality that is usually the one factor that many people are missing out on when looking for success.

I often advise people on small business and creative industries, and tell them to look at the top DJs and producers in the world: Carl Cox, Pete Tong, Sasha, Roger Sanchez, Eric Morillo, The Chemical Brothers, Fatboy Slim, The Prodigy etc – I’m fairly certain that not one of them is under 40, and I know that some of them are over 50. (edit – I’m reliably informed by Ian -see comments below- that Liam from the Prodigy is a spritely 37). The average age of the freshest, hottest 3 DJs in the world (Tiesto, Armin van Buuren and Paul van Dyk) is 37.2.

Being a DJ is usually considered to be a youngster’s game. These guys are clear evidence that if you’re good enough you might make it, BUT if you’re good enough AND you’re willing to stick at it long enough then you’ll definitely improve your chances of making it. I suppose it’s a case of having the talent, and using the perseverance to maximise the likelihood of getting your break…

“It’s not that I’m so smart, it’s just that I stay with problems longer”. ~Albert Einstein


A few bits and pieces…

————————

We’ve recently announced details of Ignite Cardiff #2, and with that in mind I thought I’d link to this article explaining how to “Deliver a Presentation like Steve Jobs”.

14 Tools Of Highly Effective Twitter Users
– I particularly like the first tool. I’d be more inclined to find out how annoying I am though, rather than vet others before following….

This looks quite interesting if you’re based near South Wales and are in the creative industries, innovation, enterprise etc. I’ll probably be there.

This link is either the greatest link ever for a procrastinator, or a fascinating archive of the things that amused us over the early years of “the internet age”.

Very interesting take on what’s “killing” the music industry. Not illegal downloads, according to the author. Surprised to see that the value of music being shipped is more today than it was in 1993.

My Dad’s been very ill recently, and I’ve been “hanging out” at an online forum where people exchange experiences and support about the illness that he’s suffering from. One post struck me as absolute gold: A woman has become very housebound and insular in the last year, not wishing to leave the house. But in the recent snow her husband and kids persuaded her to go out and make a snowman with them. The phrase that convinced her to get out there? “Let’s go make some memories“.

Life is short, and all we really have at the end of it is our memories, so go make some.

* The pic at the top is of my girlfriend and I, mid-jump, making some snowy memories a few weeks ago. That blurry shot is the best of about 15 attempts to get a shot of us mid air in the snow, using a self timer!

Categories
advertising business entrepreneur Entrepreneurship google interesting internet media networking personal branding planning productivity

Insights into personal branding online

I’ve just finished writing my regular column for Enterprise Magazine. My topic this month was “personal branding on the web”. I’ll publish the full article here once it hits the streets, but I thought I’d share the unedited insights of two experts who shared their wisdom with me. I didn’t have space for all their thoughts in the actual article, so here they are in their full glory:

Tom Critchlow, from Distilled:

  • Make sure you choose an online ‘handle’ which is both easy to remember, unique and short
  • Be consistent. Make sure that you keep the same username across all the social media sites you sign up to (twitter, digg, etc etc). This makes it easy for people to connect the dots and helps your existing ‘friends’ on one social media site find you on other sites.
  • Make sure that you choose an online username which you can rank for in Google. People use search. A lot of people use search actually and being able to rank for your own name is valuable because it allows you to present searchers with a page of your choosing and importantly you can set up a contact form etc on the site which leads me onto the next point:
  • Make sure you are contactable. If someone wants to get in touch with you make it easy for them, whether it’s an email address in your twitter background, a contact form on a website or blog etc. Never underestimate the power of email!
  • Monitor the conversation about you. Using a tool like google alerts (free) or Distilled’s reputation monitor (cheap, few more features) allows you to monitor the interwebs for any mentions of your name. It’s important to choose a unique, short name in point 1 above so people can find you but it also removes a lot of the headache associated with monitoring as well.
  • Last but not least, engage! When someone emails you, email them back, when someone twitters you, twitter them back. If someone tweets something you can help them with don’t be afraid to send them a note. Online networking is hugely powerful and has gained Distilled Ā£100,000s of business. Be nice to people and be nice to people and you’ll get it back in spades.


Carl Morris
, from Native
The term “personal brand” is not to everyone’s taste, but if you do anything on the web you need to understand it. Your prospective client, employer or advocate will take seconds to figure out who you are. Attention is scarce! So you need to represent yourself in a way that makes it as easy as possible for them.

Full article online in a few weeks when it goes to print.

šŸ™‚

Categories
brand branding business entrepreneur geek interesting internet marketing networking productivity silicon valley web 2.0

Two things…

1 – Interesting article in the Financial Times this morning* about how big companies (and I mean Shell, Procter & Gamble – that kind of big) are taking web 2.0 tools seriously. Worth a few minutes of your time, definitely.

2 – I put a message out on Twitter a few days ago for some thoughts on personal branding on the web, as I’m writing an article on the subject for Enterprise Magazine. One of the things that came back was this video from my good friend Carl. I’d never heard of Gary Vaynerchuk, but he’s the CEO of the very successful WineLibrary. Now I’m not sure if he’s terrifying, brilliant, inspired, hilarious or straight-up bonkers. But I do know that he comes up with some great, simple truths that we should all be aware of. Highly recommended viewing, for a number of reasons.

* I don’t actually buy or read the Financial Times. I just get an email update from them once a day. I don’t want you thinking I’m a stock-market analyst, or something….

Categories
brand branding business entrepreneur geek interesting internet marketing networking productivity silicon valley web 2.0

Two things…

1 – Interesting article in the Financial Times this morning* about how big companies (and I mean Shell, Procter & Gamble – that kind of big) are taking web 2.0 tools seriously. Worth a few minutes of your time, definitely.

2 – I put a message out on Twitter a few days ago for some thoughts on personal branding on the web, as I’m writing an article on the subject for Enterprise Magazine. One of the things that came back was this video from my good friend Carl. I’d never heard of Gary Vaynerchuk, but he’s the CEO of the very successful WineLibrary. Now I’m not sure if he’s terrifying, brilliant, inspired, hilarious or straight-up bonkers. But I do know that he comes up with some great, simple truths that we should all be aware of. Highly recommended viewing, for a number of reasons.

* I don’t actually buy or read the Financial Times. I just get an email update from them once a day. I don’t want you thinking I’m a stock-market analyst, or something….

Categories
bands business creative industries future interesting music Music Industry myspace web 2.0

HMV buys into music venues


Not only is the traditional music retail industry in dire trouble, but there’s a huge global recession squeezing the life out of every high street store. It’s no surprise then that HMV are looking to diversify. It’s probably the only way they’ll survive the next five years and not “do a Zavvi”. They’ll spend almost 20 million quid investing in a string of venues (including the soon to be named HMV Apollo).

More details here.

Categories
bands business creative industries future interesting music Music Industry myspace web 2.0

HMV buys into music venues


Not only is the traditional music retail industry in dire trouble, but there’s a huge global recession squeezing the life out of every high street store. It’s no surprise then that HMV are looking to diversify. It’s probably the only way they’ll survive the next five years and not “do a Zavvi”. They’ll spend almost 20 million quid investing in a string of venues (including the soon to be named HMV Apollo).

More details here.

Categories
creative demos developer free geek google interesting internet media networking productivity silicon valley technology web 2.0

Even Google feels the pinch?


In these dark days of the so-called credit crunch it appears that even Google is having to tighten its belt, shutting down a number of services. Although several of them never got out of invite mode, it’s sad to see the likes Jaiku and Notebook being given the boot.

Hat-tip: Paul Bradshaw

Categories
creative demos developer free geek google interesting internet media networking productivity silicon valley technology web 2.0

Even Google feels the pinch?


In these dark days of the so-called credit crunch it appears that even Google is having to tighten its belt, shutting down a number of services. Although several of them never got out of invite mode, it’s sad to see the likes Jaiku and Notebook being given the boot.

Hat-tip: Paul Bradshaw

Categories
cardiff creative creative industries developer free wifi home working interesting internet laptop productivity remote working startup technology web 2.0 wifi working from home

Wifi map – update

You may remember that at the weekend I wrote about a new wifi hotspot map i’d put together for Cardiff. It took me 30 mins, and zero stress. And I don’t have any particular technical web skills to speak of.

Well, within an hour or so of finishing and telling the world about it, two friends had set up maps in exactly the same way for their towns (Exeter and Bristol). It gave me an idea for a truly user generated, UK wide wifi map where the regional maps are owned by the people that set them up, allowing them to promote them independently, and take all the credit in their local web community. So I set up www.wifi-in-uk.co.uk to act as the portal, and have already had a Birmingham map added to the fold.

I’m looking for people to set up maps all over the country. If you’re interested, then head over to here and you could have a map for your town in a matter of minutes.

Just goes to show – with about 2 or 3 hours work in total, you can easily get web ideas up and running. Even without any technical know-how….

Categories
advertising bands creative creative industries entrepreneur Entrepreneurship free interesting marketing media mp3 music Music Industry myspace web 2.0

Why you should give it away

Andrew Dubber has just written the most concise, brilliant post about why you should give away your music online for free (or more correctly, why you shouldn’t be scared of giving away your music for free). Of course, this applies to almost any creative works, whether it’s music, writing, video etc etc.

Read it here. I’ll certainly be pointing people in its direction constantly for the forseeable future….