Categories
brand branding business creative creative industries entrepreneur future india internet marketing media mp3 music Music Industry networking silicon valley startup technology web 2.0

Interesting facts from the future

Well, I say “the future”… that’s based purely on Gerd Leonhard‘s title of “Media Futurist”. I was recently lucky enough to spend a couple of days in the presence of him and Jeremy Silver at Future Music Labs, part of Creative Capital in Canary Wharf, London.

They both gave fascinating talks at the beginning of the first day, and I took lots of notes. I’ve just been looking back over them and thought there were a few snippits that are worth sharing. This will all appear in bullet-point form, as I can’t remember the exact context of each fact and wouldn’t want to misquote Jeremy or Gerd. Also, apologies if some of the facts don’t make that much sense out of context. They obviously don’t have the great slides that Gerd and Jeremy used to illustrate their points, too. You can see the slides for Jeremy’s presentation here, and Gerd’s here.

If they don’t make sense then let me know – I’ll improve my note taking technique!

Also, I’ll be adding news links to back up as much of this information as i can, when I can.

Jeremy Silver

  • The “value” in creative industries tends to be in digital media.
  • In 9 years the music industry has lost 40 percent of its value.
  • 20 – 25 percent of sales across the board are digital.
  • Games companies are making money!
  • Youtube‘s bandwidth costs $1m a day to maintain, and their daily loss exceeds $1m a day.
  • In the UK £357 is spent on advertising per head of population (from memory, this is annually). 19 percent of this is online, the highest percentage in the world.
  • The UK has the highest per capita spend on music. $82 a year.
  • Consumers are very sophisticated and want to interact with music – e.g. see Rockband & Singstar, Radiohead allowing fans to remix tunes etc.


Gerd Leonhard

  • 92 percent of Google’s revenue is from Adwords.
  • Total fragmentation of the market is certain. Very few models work for everyone anymore. We’ll never see anyone having hits on the scale of The Beatles again. In TV Dallas used to get 70 percent of US viewers. Today the top show, American Idol, gets just 7 percent.
  • Physical Media and productised content is the past.
  • 1.7 million new mobile users in India every week.
  • 6.8 billion minutes a day are spent on Facebook. It is a broadcaster, as are all social network.
  • We’re living in an age of “Attention Challenge”. Distribution is now a default setting.
  • Brand magnetism is everything. If you love them, you’ll buy them.
  • “Money is just a type of information” – www.kk.org
Categories
branding entrepreneur Entrepreneurship facebook internet marketing media myspace networking personal branding startup twitter

That Enterprise Article

Here’s an article I wrote which has just been published in the March issue of Enterprise Magazine. After the limitless joys of the web it’s quite hard to whittle down your thoughts to a mere 550 words, so excuse the brevity. But hopefully it’s a nice read! 🙂

Unless you’ve decided that you won’t engage with the internet in any way, then it’s almost certain that you have at least one profile online somewhere. Whether it’s a personal profile like Myspace, or a more business oriented one like LinkedIn, you are using social media to project an image of yourself that, to one extent or another, will be viewable by any person on the planet with an internet connection and, here’s the kicker, your great-great-grandchildren. Having an online identity is inevitable, and it will be available for anyone to view forever. How we engage with the social internet is something not to be taken lightly.

Firstly we must be aware of search results. What’s going to come up when our name is entered into Google? What about the information that is always associated with our name – our biographies. Do they portray us as hyper-efficient, revenue-generating machines or a laid-back networker? What are the keywords that will attract attention, and do those keywords trigger the relevant searches on Google? What words do you want to be associated with on search engines?

Tom Critchlow, Head of Search Marketing with web-experts Distilled, had some great tips for using social media to improve your online identity. “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. Make sure you are contactable – If someone wants to get in touch with you make it easy for them. Never underestimate the power of email. Last but not least, engage! When someone emails you, email them back, when someone twitters you, twitter them back”.

With his final point, Tom hits on a crucial fact about social media and online branding – You can’t just expect to just constantly promote yourself and your products. There’s a certain amount of give and take. For every time you advertise your blog to your Twitter network, be prepared to make 20 other “tweets” that are relevant links to other people’s works.

And this leads us neatly onto the social network of the moment. You’ve no doubt heard of Twitter by now and if you’ve read this far then, yes, you should be using it. For me, it’s the network where the boundaries between social and professional are most blurred. But it’s also the most powerful networking device I’ve ever come across. The micro-blogging format lends itself to sharing links to interesting articles and reports, using keywords to attract more followers and thus generating fantastic contacts with people you would never normally have found. However, it also lends itself to pithy asides, comments on the latest TV shows and occasionally a silly photo or a drunken joke. Keeping your discipline, and maintaining a professional (if informal) image is important.

I’ll leave the final words to Carl Morris of social media strategists 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”.

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 £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.

🙂

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
business creative industries developer entrepreneur Entrepreneurship facebook los angeles marketing media networking oreilly planning silicon valley startup technology wales

Agility

Here’s an article I wrote that’s just been published in Enterprise Magazine. Thanks to Rob and Dan for their insight. You can download the whole issue here, which includes a rather dashing photo of me! 🙂 And while you’re at it, keep up to date with tiptop news via their Twitter account.

It’s 5am and I’m wide awake. My mind is clearly more eager than my body to start the first working day of 2009. I’m thinking back over the last year and how I can improve over the next 12 months.

2008 was an odd year for me. I achieved a lot, bringing more people together through my networking events, and worked on some brilliant projects with some amazing people. Yet with my key “revenue generators” I often felt hamstrung by a lack of resources, both in terms of talent and finance. Needing to find people to carry out work for me, and sourcing the capital to pay for it all meant that things often seemed to move incredibly slowly. A lot of this stems from the fact that much of the work I do has the internet at the very heart of it, but I’m neither a web developer or designer. It would be technically impossible for me to build these ideas on my own.

I spoke to Dan Zambonini, technical director of internet development agency, Box UK. He thinks that being a solo entrepreneur isn’t the issue it once was. “Luckily, with the web now as it is, there are plenty of online websites that can match up idea people with doing people. Technical people love to do interesting things, so if you know the right people, you’ll often find someone who’s willing to help you out for the sheer pleasure of it.”

Dan believes that there’s a growing demand for smaller, smarter online services that do one thing well, rather than trying to do everything. The idea being to get them up online as soon as they work and improve them as they go along, using your first customers as your testers too.

“Especially now with online services….it’s easier than ever to realise sophisticated ideas with less effort. Twitter, Facebook, Flickr; all started off much simpler, and have added features as they’ve been demanded”.

For some, being agile isn’t a desirable quality but an absolute prerequisite. “Digital PR has to be lightening quick because that’s the way the web works – the window of opportunity in online media is so much smaller”, says Rob Mosley from boutique digital advertising and PR agency Nonsense. I asked him for a good tip on getting projects up and running quicker. “I think debate is the biggest enemy to getting stuff done quick. If you get into a habit of making decisions fast, so you can get on with making things, you’re 80% of the way there. Obviously our clients need to trust us a lot for us to do this, and they also have to accept that we’ll make the odd mistake… which is still better than missing the boat”.

So what are my new year’s resolutions? Find smart and quick people to work with who are keen to get involved in exciting one-off projects, turn my ideas around faster, don’t worry about them being perfect from the start, tweak them as I go along, and feel more fulfilled that I’m not constantly languishing in “development hell”.

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
creative creative industries entrepreneur Entrepreneurship future ignite interesting marketing networking planning productivity quote roadtrip startup wales

Now’s the time…

The end of 2008 came with a whole load of personal and professional challenges for me, and I was very glad of the time off over Christmas and the New Year. But now I’m very keen to get stuck back into 2009 and believe it will be the best year yet, for many reasons. I’ll expand on my thoughts another time, but in the meantime here’s an extract from a letter written to Tim Ferriss by his mentor. Inspiring reading from his latest blog post

While many are wringing their hands, I recall the 1970s when we were suffering from an oil shock causing long lines at gas stations, rationing, and 55 MPH speed limits on Federal highways, a recession, very little venture capital ($50 million per year into VC firms), and, what President Jimmy Carter (wearing a sweater while addressing the Nation on TV because he had turned down the heat in the White House) called a “malaise”. It was during those times that two kids without any real college education, Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, started companies that did pretty well. Opportunities abound in bad times as well as good times. In fact, the opportunities are often greater when the conventional wisdom is that everything is going into the toilet.

Well…we’re nearing the end of another great year, and, despite what we read about the outlook for 2009, we can look forward to a New Year filled with opportunities as well as stimulating challenges.

Now’s the time, folks!

Categories
creative creative industries Entrepreneurship free wifi future laptop louis ck networking productivity remote working working from home

We live in incredible times

I like to think of myself as a fairly patient kind of guy. I’m less likely than other people I know to throw my mobile out of the window when it freezes, and I’ve learned to save my work regularly in case my laptop crashes (which it never does). And I’m often stopped in my tracks when I think that, for example, less than a second after i press the “Publish” button on my laptop (which is connected to the internet via my local cafes wireless network) that the whole world will be able to read these words….

I’ve been thinking for years about whether humans (as a collective) are able to psychologically cope with the sheer complexity of life that comes with being surrounded by incredible technology. And there’s a whole book i could write on it, so I won’t bore you now. But I often wonder if as a species we wouldn’t be happier reverting to the 5 or 6 meditative actions a day (ploughing, harvesting, hunting etc), rather than maintaining the incredibly fragmented lives we live now (check email 52 times, write 12 texts while eating lunch, receive 6 phonecalls, watch half a movie while writing emails etc etc etc). I often wonder about the impact of this on our collective mental health. I often feel like my brain needs “defragmenting”, a phrase that will be familiar to anyone who performs their own computer maintenance.

Anyway, before I end up starting down that avenue for lengthy discussion I’ll leave you with this brilliant, and relevant, clip of American comedian Louis CK on the Conan O’Brien show. As he says – “Everything’s amazing, nobody’s happy”. Maybe we should show a little more gratitude for the incredible times we live in.

Hat-tip to Merlin Mann.