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Archive for January, 2011

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All Blacks Plane…

Very cool. 

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Quora War Breaks Out

Love this quote:

our new policy on self-promoting “social media experts” is to just kill them all, and let God sort it out. – Quora User (name redacted)

Saying that, it seems a little ridiculous that Scoble can’t comment on the functioning of a community that he is a member of, in the same way any other member can.

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Does Online Advertising Work?

In my role as a marketer, I get to see mountains of data. Online advertising does work, but its incredibly inefficient. Chris Anderson – the TED guy – has some interesting ideas as to why it is so ineffective. It’s a must watch for any marketer. He notes:

  • the advertising value associated with one hour of an Internet user’s time is less than $.10 and one third of that goes to Google. This number is low even compared to the challenged performance of television which comes to $.25 and print which is $1.00.
  • current solutions, to impose a 15 or 30 second ad in the form of a video segment, is designed to engender frustration and even hatred, worse than pop up ads

One reason he cites is a preoccupation with reach and attention with little consideration with intensity. In other words, we do little to engage and create a relationship, instead favoring the impression or opportunity to see. And he is right.

Great ads tend to still be measured on their ability to secure attention – through creativity – rather than build a relationship through engagement. He has thoughts on how to solve this – and Aker expands on this over on his blog:

  • Become part of the community rather than transmitting to it.
  • Embrace radical openness – just like you see at TED conferences. While the conferences only touch 800 members twice a year by putting them online the talks engage more than 320 million viewers. I like his idea that firms have employees talk about their values and experiences, to let the audience inside. Tony Hsieh of may be a role model.
  • Recognize why people attend to stimuli and are motivated to pass it on. Within our tech communities at Dell, for people to engage they have to be motivated to showcase their knowledge and smarts. Small rewards help with that. But the real driver is the simplicity and transparency of the tools.

For me it’s less a question of whether online advertising works or not, it is a question of how efficient it is.

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Information Overload

Always-on environments are killing productivity and creativity. They confuse rate of response with quality of response and creative thinking. We urgently need to address this in all workplaces. McKinsey Quarterly has great ideas on how to tackle this and observations worth noting.

The first book they reference was the first I read on this; Peter Drucker’s 1967 classic, The Effective Executive,1 which emphasized that “most of the tasks of the executive require, for minimum effectiveness, a fairly large quantum of time.”

“Drucker’s solutions for fragmented executives—reserve large blocks of time on your calendar, don’t answer the phone, and return calls in short bursts once or twice a day—sound remarkably like the ones offered up by today’s time- and information-management experts.2

Some great comments on productivity:

We tend to believe that by doing several things at the same time we can better handle the information rushing toward us and get more done. What’s more, multitasking—interrupting one task with another—can sometimes be fun. Each vibration of our favorite high-tech e-mail device carries the promise of potential rewards. Checking it may provide a welcome distraction from more difficult and challenging tasks. It helps us feel, at least briefly, that we’ve accomplished something—even if only pruning our e-mail in-boxes. Unfortunately, current research indicates the opposite: multitasking unequivocally damages productivity

For us to solve this, as leaders, we need to develop new communications protocols and filtering strategies. This is worth a read.

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Interesting Read On Google Strategy

This is worth a read – and reveals how focused Google’s strategy is on mobile. Great quote from Schmidt.

"We envision literally a billion people getting inexpensive, browser-based touchscreen phones over the next few years," wrote Schmidt. "Can you imagine how this will change their awareness of local and global information and their notion of education? And that will be just the start."

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