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Loud Net Rep = Ned Poulter. I'm a geek and aspiring digital marketer... This blog is a place where I share my creative exploits as well as putting forward things that I come across that are design, marketing or generally 'geeky' that I feel the need to share with the world...

Friday, 23 April 2010

Geek Art Hits The Mainstream - Round 2

So a while ago I wrote about the increase of infographics being used online, because of the information overload that we all suffer due to the proliferation of articles on the Internet. An interesting thing that I've seen is an increase of is inforgraphics being used to summarise or compare, examples include a showdown between Foursquare and Gowalla on who's winning the geolocation war which I saw after being tweeted by @domrodwell from Manchester's CheethamBell JWT and the Visualizing 6 years of Facebook (taken from Mashable).

Some brilliantly specific infographics (such as the many for
the Beatles) and increasing intricate ones are crawling through the woodwork. After looking and admiring many recently I found my ultimate piece of 'geek art' so far...

(Taken from Information Architects, click on the image to see a higher res version)

The Web Trend 4 infographic is based on the Tokyo subway system, something which I can appreciate as I went there when I was 20, and represents the entire world of online, the key companies and players. What's breathtaking about this also is that the not only is it created based upon the Tokyo subway system, but the layout of each company is representative of the districts in Tokyo too. Personally I learned a lot from looking at this, mainly from discovering sites that I was unaware of to explore more!

If you've seen any infographics that you particularly love then please share them!

I will certainly be ordering this as poster (I'd recommend you do it too!) my bedroom wall will soon be graced by its first piece of geek art. I'll be sure to upload a picture when it has been hung, watch this space...

Thursday, 8 April 2010

The Digital Civilisation is being formed from people congregating in online 'villages', to following the trends of the major online 'cities'

Something that has been of great interest to me over the last year of trying to advance my knowledge of digital marketing in an effort to make myself more employable, whilst also pursuing my geeky nature, has been the real growth of technology within everybody's lives over the past decade. I am very lucky to be a person born exactly in the 'digital age' and can remember using laptops since I was 5, something that I am very proud to say to people and I am very glad that I went to a school that advocated this. This 'digital age' stretches far beyond your mobile phone, your TV and your laptop, to the realization that (for me at least) technology is used so many times throughout my normal day-to-day activities that taking the time to count would strike off an hour everyday at least, so I'll get an app for it ;p

The emergence of this Digital Civilisation is, in fact, groundbreaking but like other major events in history no-one will accurately document the changes that have happened until these events have passed, 20 or 50 years from now. Because of this we are therefore surfing the metaphorical wave of this revolution and whilst we can only keep up with everything. By reading everything we can and 'staying up to date' in any ways that are made available to us (and I'd strongly advise you do) we can put ourselves in the best position to learn and this Digital Civilisation is all about learning.

An interesting article  in The Marketer, deals with this well and along with my undergraduate dissertation, which I have just completed, are what drove me to write this latest post.

This article considers that people now operate online by mostly visiting the 'villages' they are familiar with such as Microsoft, Yahoo!, Google, AOL, Skype, Twitter, Facebook, Amazon, BBC and iPhone. However something I believe is a trend for us geeks is that staying within the metaphorical prose of what I have dubbed in this article as the 'Digital Civilisation', is that we now visit the digital 'cities' to keep up with the latest trends, I'm talking about your Delicious, Reddit, Mashable and your RSS feed news aggregators such as Feeddemon or NetNewsWire; the key here is that these are social; they're what people are talking about. As conversations with consumers are meant to be the future of marketing, then trend creation in the digital 'cities' is definitely the future of knowledge exchange; particularly amongst us geeks!

Online marketing is now overtaking offline marketing spend, the worldwide recession has somewhat served as a catalyst for this change. The amazing thing, which has held me in thorough and incredibly interesting conversations with fellow geeks who work in the digital marketing industry, that I have come across through networking and looking for graduate employment, is that the potential implications of this grow day by day, creating more and more opportunities at an exponential rate. We just need to find the opportunity to tap them. This is something I am very excited about...

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

GaGa a Guilty Pleasure, a Lesson in Social Media Marketing, or Both...?

While to begin with, I was rather reserved at jumping on the Gaga bandwagon when I first heard hits like 'Pokerface' and 'Just Dance, I now have no qualms in defending the fact that I think she is a rather damn good musician, songwriter and a fantastic performer. Not only will I now happily bob along to her music and debate at length the fact that she is the new Madonna, she is more than a pop star, she's a brand; and a bloody good one at that!

Rather than making this a blog post in homage to Miss Gaga, it actually has slightly more relevance to what I normally write about, which is the fact that she is a fantastic lesson in social media marketing too... a great Adage article discusses this and I'd really recommend reading it.

Some key points to take from Gaga's social media impact are:
She boasts 2.8 million Twitter followers and more than 5.2 million Facebook fans.
A comparison between Madonna taking 10 years until her first massive endorsement (from Pepsi in 1989) and Gaga taking just 18 months until Virgin Mobile endorsed her Monster Ball tour and she had "created her own brand of headphones, Hearbeats by Lady Gaga, with record label Interscope; and landed her own (cherry pink) lipstick as a spokeswoman for Mac Cosmetics' Viva Glam, benefiting Mac's AIDS fund." and become Polaroid's creative director...
The release of her Bad Romance video exclusively on the Universal Music Group site caused it to crash it was so popular.
Her online video views surprises further when I glanced at this weeks viral video chart which holds Lady Gaga at positions 3 and 6, with her 'Bad Romance' and 'Telephone' videos, with a colossal total of 40,716,004 and 239,160,207 views respectively... What's more when you see the individual breakdowns of the number of blog posts, Tweets and Facebook shares for 'Telephone' and 'Bad Romance' you can understand their truly viral appeal.

So whether you dislike her music, think she's really a guy or dislike her brand... I'd suggest you sit up and take notice when she engages social media again because I think she offers some lessons for all of us...

SEO Copywriting a Great Introduction & Consideration for my Career...

So after already having one great response from Fluid Creativity regarding employment in the digital/online marketing industry Another great Manchester based company I-Com have also provided some great tips in starting out in SEO copywriting, including some great free guides available on the Internet too!

Out of the points made in the SEO copywriting 101 there are some great links, of particular use to me were:
The link to the SEO Copywriting guide on Copyblogger which, quite frankly, if you're going to read anything on copywriting, I'd make sure it was this!
Other useful pointers such as:
Having a play with Google Analytics (I've attached it to this blog, for instance), Google Insights and Google Adwords: Keyword Tool, if you have an interest into going in to SEO. From many things that I've heard so far from industry professionals is that graduate employers don't expect you to be an SEO whizz just yet, but having played about with the tools that are used as an industry standard, coupled with the willingness to learn, is what really interests employers.
Setting up your own blog, the guys at I-Com recommend Blogger or Wordpress. Personally I would completely agree with this (after all what do you think this blog is for? :) and would really recommend it. In my experience I have had a bit of a play with HTML, been able to integrate some SEO tools with the site and have also gained personal experience in copywriting; even though it is (hopefully) improving as I go along. If you are interested in a job in digital/online marketing then I'd seriously recommend having a play yourself, after all you can't go wrong so there's nothing to lose!