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Hyperconnected teens: The staggering statistics

Much has been said about how connected Gen Y is. But I was shocked when I learned that teens with a cell phone average 2,272 text messages per month. That’s works out to over 73 messages per day, or 4.5 per hour assuming eight hours of sleep. This is compared to an average of 203 […]

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Decaf in the afternoon? Not at Starbucks

I had a Twilight Zone moment this afternoon at my local Starbucks when I ordered my decaf drip coffee and was told the Seattle-based coffee chain no longer brews decaf in the afternoons. You read that right: A coffee shop that doesn’t offer decaf in the afternoon—the largest coffee shop chain in the world, mind […]

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Behold, the Facebook Friend Spamming tool

It was bound to happen. With a little help from the programmers and usability gurus at Facebook, I spammed my friends, colleagues, business associates, people who’ve considered hiring Outsource Marketing, and everyone else in my Gmail address book that didn’t have a Facebook account yet. I’m not talking about Facebook application developers making it next […]

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Is Belkin’s apology for astroturfing enough?

First, what’s “astroturfing?” Roughly, it’s when formal political, advertising, or public relations campaigns seek to create the impression of spontaneous “grassroots” behavior, hence the reference to the artificial grass, AstroTurf.* On Friday, The Daily Background Blog revealed that a Belkin employee was doing just that: Paying 65 cents for perfect reviews on Buy.com, NewEgg.com and […]

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If you can’t beat ’em, sponsor ’em

With nearly 109,650,000 views-to-date, Judson Laipply‘s Evolution of Dance is the most popular video in YouTube history. He’s back with the official sequel, Evolution of Dance 2—this time presented by Saveology.com and powered by PeopleJam.com. I’d never heard of PeopleJam or Saveology before today. My bet is you never have, either. Considering most viral videos […]

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10 of my favorite lists from 2008

Happy New Year! I know. I’ve ranted about lists before, but to start off 2009, one of my resolutions is to lighten up (a little) about lists. Here’s a list of 10 of my favorite lists from last year, in no particular order: The 10 most admired companies of 2008 Fortune Magazine 50 ideas on […]

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Why you can’t trust anyone in marketing

In The Night After Christmas, Jonathan Salem Baskin waxes poetic about the excuses marketers will make when retailers realize their marketing efforts (especially their holiday sales) weren’t what they hoped for this year: The marketing had failed, the sales not triumphant, The guy sneaking away was the company’s consultant. More rapid than eagles his course […]

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Motrin feels the pain of a social media mommy mob

You might have heard about the recent uproar over a new Motrin ad targeting mothers. If you have already formed an opinion on the topic, skip the video below. Otherwise, take a look, and try to be as objective as possible. View this video on YouTube The response Paul Banas estimated that in 48 hours […]

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Can you market as well as a state agency?

Some of the best marketing today is being done by groups typically considered boring and safe. You know—state agencies. Battling preconceptions to market employment office services to employers A few years back, Outsource Marketing helped a consortium of seven U.S. states whose charter was to find effective new ways to market state one-stop services to […]

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Marketing lessons from Barack Obama

Whether you are red or blue, you can’t deny Barack Obama’s marketing prowess. Here are a few lessons every organization should consider when they are seeking ‘votes’ from prospects: Develop strategies based on consumer insights. The Obama campaign clearly understood where America was hurting most, and developed strategies in response. Build an organization that can […]

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Northwest Tweetup today in Seattle

The Northwest Tweetup is shaping up nicely, with 38 confirmed guests and 50 maybes as of this moment. If you aren’t using Twitter, check out How I use Twitter, and you? by Jeremiah Owyang at Forrester, and Twitter me this: Is it time to tweet? by me. Also, here’s my growing list of Twitter links […]

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To blog or not to blog?

Blogs help humanize companies, improve authenticity, create valuable feedback loops and may help drive significant traffic to your company website. So it’s no wonder one of questions I’m most often asked is, “should my company consider blogging?” After asking a few questions, I’m able to give a definitive “yes” or “no” answer, but I’ve never […]

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10 marketing mistakes to avoid now

The financial crisis has everyone on edge, myself included. I lost my bank, and I’m not sure who’s next. Should I put my money in coffee cans and bury it in the backyard? When people are on edge, sometimes they do things they normally wouldn’t do. Same goes for businesses. Here are a 10 things […]

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Two Seattle Tweetups in October

I’ve spoken about he benefits of Twitter countless times. I’ve met some of the smartest people I know there and found great inspiration for a number of my posts. If you aren’t using Twitter, you should give it a try. I was reluctant at first, but someone urged me to give it a few weeks […]

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Are you looking for love in all the wrong places?

I wish people didn’t call it “new media” anymore. It’s just media. But unlike television, radio and print, this media is created by you, me, your co-workers—maybe even your mom. It’s a conversation that brings you closer to the customer than ever before at a time when recent research has shown that 86% of consumers […]

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How to use social media to create social good

Social media can be an incredible force for doing good. I’ve spoken about it a bit lately, sharing some real world examples in the deck below: Examples don’t necessarily explain how to do it, so here’s a simple, grassroots way I used social media to raise $1,250 for the Muscular Dystrophy Association just yesterday. Here’s […]

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Bite-sized Friday: The Network Effect

You’ve heard of the network effect before, haven’t you? It’s defined as “the phenomenon whereby a service becomes more valuable as more people use it, thereby encouraging ever-increasing numbers of adopters.” For example, the telephone wasn’t particularly valuable until several people you knew had one. Same thing with email. Here are a few topics relative […]

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Let’s fight vanity scams together

I’ve been intrigued by the legs Awards for sale: Not a rewarding experience has had since I posted it on July 22nd, just under a month ago. The Ballard Agency received an award from the U.S. Local Business Association that was clearly a deceptive marketing tactic similar to the phony domain name and Yellow Pages […]

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AMEX does good with the ’08 Members Project

Have you heard about the Members Project from American Express? It’s a social good promotion built to encourage people to “come together to achieve something amazing.” Card members are invited to submit ideas for projects in the areas of arts and culture, community development, education, environment and wildlife, and health. Anyone, including non-cardmembers, can discuss, […]

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Vote for the dumbest viral marketing campaign

A few weeks ago, I chatted with Dan Tynan regarding an article he was writing for PC World about the dumbest viral marketing campaigns of all time. I shared a few of my faves and it appears most landed on his list, with the Jawbone viral campaign landing at #3. Check out Lame and lamer: […]

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