the grass is greener on the internet

I Twitter or We Twitter
December 15, 2008, 1:18 am
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Can a brand blog? That’s the question which is being heavily debated, especially when it comes to that celebrity of the microblogging world, Twitter.

Just read a mashable article on the topic which argues that it should not be the brands but the people who control them that broadcast. On the whole, most people suggest that nobody wants to hear from, say, Microsoft – they want to hear from Bill Gates or someone working at Microsoft.

I’m currently trying to get a online strategy going for an SME though and I’m not so sure that going for a personal tack is the best way to go for all brands.

I keep hearing that it’s all about having a personality that you can interact with, and nobody wants to hear a brand just talk about itself.

But what about brand personality?

I really believe that there’s no blanket rule on this.

I wouldn’t want to hear Microsoft just talking about their new products. But I WOULD want to hear McKinsey talk about their work and the latest tips for good business.

I would prefer to hear from a dynamic personality which forms the guts of a small business but if they could infuse a business Twitter account with a personality of its own that reflects the core values of their business it would be an even more powerful statement.

It wouldn’t be easy, but it would be effective.


Real UGC. + Demystifying ‘conversations’.
November 4, 2008, 10:08 pm
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I hate using Apple as an example of great branding.

I’m going to anyway.

There’s a lot of talk about user-generated content. When it works it’s amazing for a brand. When it doesn’t it can be a complete PR disaster. High risk, high gain.

The problem I see, is that UGC is seen as an advertising tactic and not a branding issue.

You don’t get a positive answer just because you ask a question. You get feedback when you’re doing something great.

If you want people to have conversations about you, give them something to talk about.

Apple has a well-designed product that works. It’s distinctive without being wacky.

For me, real UGC is the fact that 80% of the time you see a computer in TV shows, it’s a Mac.

Sometimes we believe that just because we’re marketers, the ‘conversations’ we have don’t follow the normal social rules. They do. A conversation isn’t a wacko theoretical concept that takes years to understand. Stop thinking about it as some mystical tactic – brands should practically interact like people. They don’t call it brand personality for nothing.