« December 2005 | Main | February 2006 »

Posts from January 2006

January 30, 2006

Every Business Needs A Blog

I truly believe this - *every business must have a blog*. Well, to be honest, every business _should_ need a blog - I'm just not sure when we'll go from "should" to "must", so get one now and avoid disappointment. Way back in 1995 I would tell anyone who'd listen that they *had* to have a web site because eventually everyone would use the web to determine what companies they were going to deal with. As hard as it may be to believe, this was a radical idea at the time and many scoffed. Few would scoff now - can you imagine doing business with any company that had *no* Internet presence? The next frontier isn't the desemination of information via corporate web sites - that's now table stakes. Increasingly businesses will need to convey authority and enter into conversations with their "fan club" (in the "Seth Godin sense":http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2006/01/flipping_the_fu.html of the term).

Continue reading "Every Business Needs A Blog" »

Some People Think TD.com Is Always Offline

Do you type the www. whenever you want to visit a site? No? Well, you are not alone. Just as we learned that we didn't need to say "http://" when promoting a domain, many marketers are now dropping the www as well. And since most sites are set up to redirect users to the web site even without the www, people are learning they can cut out four keystrokes by skipping the "dub-dub-dub". But what happens if _your_ web site isn't configured correctly? You end up turning customers away like the TD Bank has been doing for years now. Try going to "td.com":http://td.com - here's what you see: TD.com Unavailable image Loads of visitors will look at this message and assume that their site is down (or has been hacked or something). Some might guess that TD just mis-configured their servers and try again with the www but the vast majority will assume the site is down.

Continue reading "Some People Think TD.com Is Always Offline" »

Who's Marketing Via IM?

I just finished listing to a great podcast of a recent "iMedia Connection":http://www.imediaconnection.com/ workshop called "Branding with IM":http://www.imediaconnection.com/content/7748.asp. This got me thinking much more about how instant messaging fits into the overall marketing mix than I have before. I'm looking to do a piece for One Degree about how _Canadian_ companies are using instant messaging as a marketing platform. If you know anyone doing this - or if you and/or a client have success you'd like to share - post in the comments or "contact me":http://www.onedegree.ca/contributors/ken_schafer directly.

January 24, 2006

Where Did Your Privacy Policy Come From?

Let me play "David Blaine":http://www.davidblaine.com/ for a moment and channel your inner thoughts. Think about your privacy policy. Imagine the first line of it. Read it silently to yourself in your mind and I'll see if I can make out what it might be. Are you thinking "Your privacy is very important to us"?

Continue reading "Where Did Your Privacy Policy Come From?" »

Being A Good Marketer In A Post-Cluetrain World

Tara Hunt One Degree Contributor and "Riya's":http://www.riya.com/ chief instigator Tara Hunt has written a great post on "Marketing in the post-Cluetrain era":http://www.horsepigcow.com/2006/01/marketing-in-post-cluetrain-era.html. If you are at all struggling with what this whole "markets are conversations":http://www.cluetrain.com/ thing really looks like in action you should read this.

Continue reading "Being A Good Marketer In A Post-Cluetrain World" »

January 20, 2006

Election 2006 and Social Media - The Liberals

Be sure to check out all five articles in this series:

Finally we review the Liberal Party of Canada and its use of social media. As the current party in power but with a minority government (and a scandalized one at that), they have a unique challenge in getting their message out to a jaded and weary Canadian public. Will they take advantage of social media to ensure that their support is shored-up and ready for the election? Or will they see their ruling party status as sufficient and ignore the power of the digital conversation?

Ndpiconzoomlj OK, before we even get to the Liberals, hot off the press, the NDP has blog badges and MSN icons! These were not there a couple of days ago. And then my NDP article was published. Who says one vote, one voice in the wilderness, doesn’t make a difference? Right, on to the Liberals …

Continue reading "Election 2006 and Social Media - The Liberals" »

January 19, 2006

Election 2006 and Social Media - The Green Party

Be sure to check out all five articles in this series:

If the NDP is the "little guy" on the national political stage, then the Green Party is still waiting to be given a ticket to the show.  Fortunately, the Green Party can stake a claim in cyberspace that's just as big, bold and interactive as any of the mainstream parties.  OK, enough terrible mixed metaphors.  Let's see if the Greens do take advantage of social media to rally their candidates and their constituents in an effort to change the political landscape.

Continue reading "Election 2006 and Social Media - The Green Party" »

January 18, 2006

Adtech Impact Coming To Toronto

Adtech Impact Logo I'm not sure how I missed this, but popular online marketing event "ad:tech":http://www.ad-tech.com is bringing their killer one-day "ad:tech Impact":http://www.ad-tech.com/impact/agenda.asp?subevent=4 event to Toronto on March 23rd. The speaker roster is pretty much entirely US imports (other than Jerry Tarasofsky, Howard Firestone and Daniel Taras of "iPerception":http://www.iperception.com, but that is also an advantage as we'll get to hear some speakers that don't normally venture this far north. Those scheduled (assuming they're not planning a "made in Canada" agenda for T.O.) include (hold your breath the list is LONG):

Continue reading "Adtech Impact Coming To Toronto" »

Should Video Play a Role in Your 2006 Plans?

If a picture is worth a thousand words, what is a video clip worth? This past weekend I purchased my third Webcam - a gift for a friend - and it really got me thinking about the power of video on the Internet, both as a communication and a marketing tool. Regardless of whether or not the video is live or pre-recorded, downloaded, streamed, or podcast, it's impossible to deny the power and impact of full-motion moving images served up online. There's an inherent immediacy to video that static images and words usually can't capture, and I'm of the belief that video can, and usually does, engage people on a more emotional (even primal) level.

Continue reading "Should Video Play a Role in Your 2006 Plans?" »

January 17, 2006

CNMA Launches New Site

New CNMA Site Image Congrats to the "Canadian New Media Awards":http://www.cnma.ca who just relaunched their web site in advance of opening nominations for the 2006 CNMA's on February 1st. We'll be following the CNMAs this year so keep checking One Degree for updates. Now if they would only add pre-2003 winners and finalists to the site I could reclaim my past glory as a previous "Volunteer of the Year" finalist. :)

Mark Levy Tele-class Entertains and Informs

Mark Levy In the fall I had the good fortune to listen to "Michel Neray's":http://www.essentialmessage.com/ tele-class with author Mark Levy. The two chatted about various ways of reframing businesses and products to get big increases in sales and awareness. Lucky for you Michel and Mark are doing a repeat on Thursday. Here's a sample of (as Michel puts it) Mark's "wacky recommendations (that work)": bq.. “A famous e-book author phoned me and said, ‘One of my old paperback books went out of print. I bought the final 2,000 copies for a buck a piece. How do I sell them?’ “I said, ‘Selling them is a waste of time. Here’s what you do. Take 1,800 copies, shred them, put them in a bathtub, sit in the tub so that just your head sticks out, have a photo taken, and put it on a news release that says, ‘Author Takes A Bath In His Own Books.’ Use the body of the release to talk about how you went from a near-destitute paperback author, to a six figure a year e-book author. That way, the white elephant of your paperbacks supports the profitable side of your business, e-books. “‘What do I do with the 200 copies I didn’t shred?’ he asked. “They become valuable collectibles. Sell them at triple the cover price.” p. Essential Message has "more details and registration info":http://www.essentialmessage.com/workshops/nextfteleclass.php for this free tele-class at their site.

NMBA iLunch Features Mobile Game Case Study

Jewel Quest Image Good to see that the "New Media Business Alliance":http://www.nmba.ca (NMBA) is kicking off their "iLunch series":http://www.nmba.ca/casestudies.html this month here in Toronto on Friday January 20th. Here are details: bq.. *iLunch 4.02 - Games People Pay (For)* "Interactive games come in many forms on many platforms: console, PC, downloadable, serious, mobile, iTV... Just to name a few. We all know that a console game takes millions of dollars of risk capital to create but what of the smaller categories? Are consumers willing to shell out for access to downloadable for both PC or mobile phones in significant numbers? Are publishers and distributors shelling out an adequate share of revenues to make it a viable business?" p. The lunch will be at the Original Motorcycle Cafe & Lounge. The panel includes Damir Slogar from "Big Blue Bubble":http://www.bigbluebubble.com/, Warren Currell of "Sherpa Games":http://www.sherpagames.com/ and Jennifer Crisanti of "Splashworks":http://www.splashworks.com/. Fans of Fox Televisions "24" may know that Big Blue Bubble is the maker of mobile games for 24. This lunch features a case study of their huge hit "Jewel Quest":http://www.bigbluebubble.com/mobile_games/?id=13.

When Does E-mail Become Spam?

When speaking to marketers and their agencies I often hear different interpretations of what constitutes spam. There is the "textbook definition":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spam_%28electronic%29, the legal definition as covered in the "US CAN-SPAM laws":http://www.spamlaws.com/federal/can-spam.shtml and "other interpretations":http://www.spamhaus.org/definition.html. Often a person's own definition of spam relates to how they are using e-mail and if they are a sender or recipient of marketing e-mail. For me, and for most recipients, spam is any unwanted or irrelevant messages, even if I've signed up. Marketers (senders) can always justify (at least to themselves) why their products or services, and therefore their marketing e-mail, are relevant and even wanted. However, they have a narrow opinion of what is spam. Most marketers that have compiled large permission lists take the high road and follow legal and "best practices" definitions. Those that don't have large lists or want to get their messages out quickly will often "bend" these definitions to suit their actions. I know of Fortune 500 companies that "technically" send spam based on how they originally acquired e-mail addresses.

Continue reading "When Does E-mail Become Spam?" »

January 16, 2006

Is IntelliTXT A Misnomer?

_This article is by guest contributor Karel Wegert._ Google’s continuous domination in the pay per click arena has, with the exception of the "Yahoo Search Marketing":http://searchmarketing.yahoo.com/ product (formerly the Overture network), been relatively unchallenged. In April of 2004 however, a new product called IntelliTXT was launched by "Vibrant Media":http://www.vibrantmedia.com in an attempt gain some market share in the ever-growing pay per click industry.

Continue reading "Is IntelliTXT A Misnomer?" »

Election 2006 and Social Media - The NDP

Be sure to check out all five articles in this series:

The Internet has been held up as the distribution medium of choice for "the little guy".  With a little tech savvy and a decent graphics program, an individual could have a voice that has the potential to be equally heard along with the big guys.  The NDP is often portrayed as "the little guy" in Canadian politics; how are they taking advantage of social media to promote their message and engage their constituency in an authentic conversation?

Continue reading "Election 2006 and Social Media - The NDP" »

January 12, 2006

Wait - Zip.ca Is Amazing, But How Would You Know?

While I would never want to invalidate "Tessa's critique":http://www.onedegree.ca/2006/01/12/zipca-falls-short of "Zip.ca":http://www.zip.ca I did want to rise to their defence and say that _after you *are* a subscriber_ the service is just fantastic. I've been a customer for over a year now and just *love* them. The site _is_ a bit quirky but once you've used it a few times you get the hang of it and everything works just as it is supposed to. They've been amazing at delivering and collecting information about my DVDs and their shipping status and responsive to customer service requests. And they use e-mail really, well personalized information about my account when sending regular shipping notifications that my whole family have come to depend on. Still, Tessa's points are valid.

Continue reading "Wait - Zip.ca Is Amazing, But How Would You Know?" »

Zip.ca Falls Short

If an affordable luxury can be considered a guilty pleasure, then mine is most definitely "Netflix":http://www.netflix.com/. The online DVD rental system is incomparably convenient, and is truly revolutionizing movie rental. It there's one downfall to Netflix, it's that it isn't yet available in Canada (its original plan to expand to Canada and the UK in 2005 has been "postponed":http://www.usatoday.com/money/media/2004-10-17-netflix-dvd-war_x.htm). So when I was looking for a birthday gift for my brother last year, I started investigating other alternatives. After reading several positive reviews of "Zip.ca":http://www.zip.ca/ online, I decided to buy a gift membership on the site. From start to finish, the experience was a lesson in poor online customer service. But that paled in comparison to the defective design of the company's ecommerce site. It seemed very little attention was paid to facilitating navigation, and its online transaction pages were deeply flawed.

Continue reading "Zip.ca Falls Short" »

The Big Six For 2006

I have been invited to speak to the Council of Communications Directors for the ministries of the Ontario Government tomorrow morning. The topic is *"The Big Six For '06 - The Six Big Internet Trends In 2006"*. Here's the list I'm working from: # Blogging # Feeds # Findability # Search Marketing # Simplicity # Moving Beyond Text I've only got _one hour_ to cover all this which means it will be a whirlwind tour of these key themes impacting all businesses using the Net today. My goal is really to snap their heads back and make them focus on how the Net - and our ideas about what is important online - are changing. Feedback on the list and how it impacts government would be appreciated.

Bill Sweetman to Join MacLaren McCann

Here's some breaking industry news One Degree is proud to be the first to share with the community: Industry veteran (and One Degree contributor) "Bill Sweetman":http://www.onedegree.ca/contributors/bill_sweetman has signed on to join "MacLaren McCann Direct & Interactive":http://www.maclaren.com (MMDI). Bill will become the agency's Vice President, Internet Strategy, a new position designed to take full advantage of his 14 years as a consultant in the interactive media space. In his new role, which officially begins on January 23, Bill will help provide MMDI's clients with "strategic insights and identify actionable opportunities related to how to use the Internet to achieve their goals." MMDI is based in Toronto and its clients include General Motors of Canada, Microsoft, Nestle, McNeil Healthcare, Sony Store, Coca-Cola, UPS, and more. One Degree readers will be pleased to hear that Bill has promised to continue being a regular contributor, and hopefully we'll get to pose our semi-famous Five Questions to Bill about his new gig in the coming weeks. Way to go, Bill!

January 11, 2006

Election 2006 and Social Media - The Bloc Quebecois

Be sure to check out all five articles in this series:

The Bloc Québecois is in a unique position as a national political party; they are serving a regional constituency with a small number of candidates. As a result, their use of Social Media seems to be focused around a specific type of interaction: create a central place where party members and supporters can contribute to the vision of the Bloc.

Continue reading "Election 2006 and Social Media - The Bloc Quebecois" »

January 10, 2006

Election 2006 and Social Media - The Conservatives

Be sure to check out all five articles in this series:

The blogosphere is no stranger to political opinion and debate. Canadians of every political stripe are blogging about candidates, policies and issues in all levels of government. In some cases, elected officials are also blogging, both to keep their constituency informed and to take swipes at their political opponents.

With Election 2006 fully underway, I took a look at the major political parties in Canada and how they, their candidates and their supporters are using social media to get their message across.

In this 5 part series, I review who’s blogging, podcasting, emailing, and interacting to promote their agenda online. In the spirit of full disclosure, I tend towards the left hand side of the political spectrum, but as a marketer, I’m interested in what all parties are doing to further the political conversation. But first, what do I mean by “social media”? I like Stowe Boyd’s definition of it:

Social Media are those forms of publishing that are based on a dynamic interaction, a conversation, between the author and active readers, in contrast with traditional broadcast media where the ‘audience’ is a passive ‘consumer’ of ‘content’.

Continue reading "Election 2006 and Social Media - The Conservatives" »

January 09, 2006

Polishing the Search Crystal Ball

_This article is by Guest Contributor Marc Poirer._ It's that time of the year. Again. Time for new year resolutions. If you didn't already come up with your own, here's mine: go fishing much more often. I think everyone in the interactive industry knows that 2005 was a great year for search, arguably the greatest yet. By the looks of things, 2006 will be an even better year with more marketers getting serious about paid search and SEO. Rather than simply try to come up with enough material to write "my own" look back at search in 2005 and predictions for 2006, I decided to bring you a great little list of what has been said on the topic. Then I'll make some predictions anyway, just for the hell of it.

Continue reading "Polishing the Search Crystal Ball" »

Truth In Advertising - Million Dollar Homepage Makes A Million

It was 7th on the list of "OneDegree's Top 20 posts in 2005":http://www.onedegree.ca/2005/12/21/one-degrees-top-stories-of-2005. So what's been happening with "The Million Dollar Home Page":http://www.milliondollarhomepage.com/ since "Ken's September 9th story?":http://www.onedegree.ca/2005/09/09/the-million-dollar-home-page. Recently I came across this site again and found out that Alex Tew, the 21-year old student from Wiltshire, England had sold 999,000 pixels for $1 each. That's over 99% of the way to making this a true $1,000,000 home page! The last 1,000 pixels have been offered up for auction on - what else? - "eBay":http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=5652179487&ssPageName=ADME:L:LCA:UK:31. As I write this the current bid is over US$160,000 and there are only 2 days left. Even if bidding were to stop today and Alex gets the current bid, the Million Dollar Home Page is actually going to be worth $1,159,000, a tidy 16% premium. This certainly is a million dollar idea. Plus, Alex has been sent many job offers. After all, if he can earn a cool million with only an idea and a simple website, imagine what he could do with real resources and a team of people?

Continue reading "Truth In Advertising - Million Dollar Homepage Makes A Million" »

January 05, 2006

Five Simple Internet Marketing Resolutions for 2006

As we kick off what promises to be another record year for the Internet marketing industry, I'd like to propose five simple resolutions for you to make, especially if you're on the client side of the equation. Don't worry, none of these resolutions involves breaking your precious caffeine habit or spending long hours on the treadmill. These should be simple resolutions for you to make and - more importantly - keep. Hence the simple part. Here they are...

Continue reading "Five Simple Internet Marketing Resolutions for 2006" »

January 04, 2006

Email Predictions for 2006

Each December and January over the last few years clients and associate have asked me for my predictions on the email industry: Will spam kill the 'killer app'?; Will SMS and RSS "replace":http://www.onedegree.ca/2005/05/20/rss-anot-a-replacement-for-emaila email?; What will happen to email marketing metrics in the next year? It's always interesting to see what others say. I read about "the top trends":http://www.onedegree.ca/2005/08/23/top-email-marketing-trends from others. I especially like hearing from Bill McCloskey at "MediaPost":http://publications.mediapost.com/ and his "Email Insider":http://publications.mediapost.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=Articles.showTodaysArticle&art_type=32. He always has "his annual predictions":http://publications.mediapost.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=Articles.showArticle&art_aid=37197 too _(subscription required)_. These are typically very US-focused predictions, often speaking of spam in terms of the US CAN-SPAM laws and what is seen in the US.

Continue reading "Email Predictions for 2006" »

Welcome to One Degree

  • OneDegree.ca is one of Canada's leading online publications about digital marketing, online communications and social media -- penned by some of Canada's most insightful and innovative internet marketers. Thank you for visiting!

    OneDegree.ca on Twitter OneDegree.ca on Facebook OneDegree.ca Bookmarks on Delicious OneDegree.ca on YouTube OneDegree.ca on Flickr OneDegree.ca Primary Feed

Subscribe to One Degree

  If you wish to donate to One Degree, please use the button below to send your donation via PayPal:

We are looking to grow and enhance the site.

OneDegree has been serving Canadian online marketers since 2003. There are over 2500 archived posts and over 3500 comments by some of the top thought leaders in Canada.

One Degree with FreshGigs.ca

  • FreshGigs.ca is Canada's jobsite dedicated to marketing, creative and business professionals. Search or Post Jobs Today.