Monthly Archives: December 2006

To the power of Z

Even though one of the “A-listers” recently corrupted the meme, the Z-list has had an amazing effect (for me anyway)

Rising 70,000 spots in a few weeks makes you dizzy. After rising so quickly, I may get the bends.

But it is artificial since my traffic and RSS subscriptions have only increased slightly over the same timeframe…proving one of the things that Mack intended…Technorati is not the best measure of a blog’s worth. You are. (with apologies to Time)

It’ll be interesting to see what happens to the Z-list 180 days from now.


Make them Hate you

While the common marketer is making great strides to have the customer LOVE the product and company, the sly cunning marketer knows that an alternate strategy is to make them hate you.

It worked for Phillip Morris aka Altria. Click on the player below to see a “Philip Morris marketing consultant” work to reposition the Wallstrip v-log.
And if you’re not a regular viewer of the Wallstrip v-log with Lindsay Campbell, you should be. It’s great info wrapped up daily in a very entertaining package. My biggest client has even integrated it into their web product.

Best of 2006

NOTICE: All the links in this post go to the old blogspot location. If you’d like to read these posts, please browse the best of 2006 tag. Thanks.

Last year around this time, I posted the “Best of 2005” posts here on the Shotgun Marketing Blog. And once you start something like that…it never stops.

The rationale for what’s on the 2006 list? These are posts that got lots of feedback from readers…became mini-ideaviruses around the web…or are just posts that I like alot.

And as I said last year, thank you so much for being a reader, thinking that some of this stuff is worthwhile, and spreading the word….

And now, roll the year-end tribute reel….

Problems and Solutions
Figure out the marketing problem BEFORE the solution

Your Account is Currently Overdue
Spend millions on marketing…and then have it crushed with 39 cents.

Changing Words – Changing Brands and follow-up
To change a brand…change the experience…not just the words.

New Business Strategy
I spread knowledge to millions of Russians in three paragraphs.

Lies, Damned Lies, and Statistics and follow-up
When you publish numbers, they become real.

Who’s in Charge Here?
Sounds personal.

Marketing a Start-Up
Marketing is best built in…not slapped on.

Planetary Branding
Before you go “re-branding”, ask yourself if Pluto is a planet.

Published :: A Marketer’s Guide to HIPAA
The culmination of my “year of HIPAA. My name will forever be tied to ISBN# 1578398754

State of the “Un-Blogosphere
Surprise! There’s a whole world out there.

Users First
Your customers are what “monetize” a business. Stop developing short term strategies that kill long term gains.



Prediction: Time Magazine’s announcement of “You” as Person of the Year will be greeted this week in 2 ways…

1) Here in the blogosphere, on You Tube, in WikiPedia, etc…there will be great fanfare that social media has hit the tipping point.

2) The majority of the public will say…”What’s a blog?….”What’s a YouTube?”…”Wiki-what?”

Don’t believe me? Ask the lady behind you in line at the grocery if she’s ever edited a Wikipedia article.


Pyramid Z List

Hey! I’m at the center of a blogger meme. (and at the top of a pyramid scheme!)

Mack over at the Viral Garden thinks some of the “Z-listers” are getting messed over by the insane way that Technorati ranks “authority”. (Read his original post here)

Mack was kind enough to recognize this blog as one that needs more attention paid to it (frankly, I feel the same way). So, I’m paying the “link love” forward…

Here’s Mack’s original list…
Shotgun Marketing Blog
Customers Rock!
Being Peter Kim
And here are the ones I think are unrecognized…
Presentation Zen
Dmitry Linkov
John Wagner

Copy/paste the above list and add yours in a blog post.

Since Mack posted this list…about 12 people have linked to me.
And my Technorati rank? It hasn’t moved even though all the new posts are listed. How sad that Technorati is the best tool we have for measuring blogs.

And another huge thanks to Mack for thinking the drivel I throw up here is worth spreading.


Users First

There’s been quite a bit of talk over the past few days about some remarks that Jim Buckmaster, an executive at Craigslist, made at a media conference in New York last Thursday.

It seems that Buckmaster stated that he has no intentions of “monetizing” his online classifieds service with any sort of advertising. The room full of ad and media folks apparently looked at him like he had a second head.

Why no ads? Get this….It seems that Craigslist’s users haven’t expressed an interest in seeing ads…..Mmmm.

First off, they ARE making money…( a few million a year). They just aren’t doing it with “ads”. Craigslist does a fabulous job of hitting the sweet spot on pricing. The rates they charge for job and for-rent ads in a few of the many cities they serve are high enough to pay the bills, keep other sections and cities free, and still make a very respectable profit…but the price is low enough that competitors can’t keep up.

And that may be one ulterior reason that Craigslist is still ad free. Their success is coming out of what used to be spent in newspaper and other print classifieds. Craigslist may be handing out the free classified smack to get people addicted. When the local newspapers decide that the classifieds aren’t worth the dead trees and ink, the papers will discontinue their classified business. At that point, Craigslist may suddenly decide to monetize their monopolistic position with ads or other items.

But there may be a more pure motive.

Maybe they understand that the user/consumer/reader is what “monetizes” the business. Maybe they see that the most effective long term marketing strategy is to grow a base of dedicated loyal users.

Maybe they realize that a clean uncluttered useful page invites people to return and build loyalty to a site. They see that the customer (the single most important element of a business)should not be harassed by pop-ups & pop-unders, irrelevant email, interstitial ads, floating & expanding ads, trick banners, and everything else that webmasters slap onto a website to make a dollar today…only to cost them $100 dollars tomorrow. They see that you can train a customer to mistrust ALL the content on your page because you’ve tricked them too many times into clicking.

Maybe Craigslist sees that simply because you CAN place an ad on a web property (or any place), doesn’t mean that you SHOULD.

It’s a lot like the story of the goose that laid the golden eggs. The biggest mistake that alot of today’s web (and brick&mortar) businesses are making is developing short term strategies that kill long term gains.

But why worry about tomorrow…when you can make 58 cents today off an AdSense sidebar?


From all of us to all of you

Ahh….the snow….the decorations….the wasted advertising dollars.

It’s the time of year that salespeople go out and bilk unsuspecting small business owners into wasting their “advertising dollars” for holiday greetings. In case you’re thinking of buying, here’s some ready-made copy…

Shotgun Concepts
12/1 – 12/25
(mx fade in)
Everyone here at Shotgun Concepts wishes you and yours the very very best of the (blank). At this time of year, it’s important to remember (blank). And Danny, Frank, Lorita, Consuela, Bobbi Jo, and all the guys down in the warehouse wish you the very best of this holiday season and the happiest of new years.
(Insert recordings of owners’ kids and grandkids here)
Remember, that this is the only time we’ve advertised all year…and we’ve only mentioned the name of the business once…and you still have no idea what we do.
From all of us to all of you, Happy Holidays to you and yours and mine and his….
(long mx fade out)

Nothing like placing generic wallpaper advertising on the air during one of the most ad cluttered times of the year for great ROI.
If you’re lucky, it may beat the return on that yearbook ad you bought last April.