07 Apr

“The Age of Conversation” mark II: Why don’t people get it?

Writing a book with 103 people from all over the world is a pretty interesting thing to do. That was “The Age of Conversation” and I enjoyed participating last year with my contributing chapter, “The voice of the CEO”.

Drew and Gavin (who had the idea, edited and co-authored the book) put an enormous amount of work into that project but that clearly didn’t scare them off; they are now coordinating the next edition, “The Age of Conversation: Why don’t people get it?”

Again, the book is created online, from start to finish. Again, all the proceeds go to charity. Again, the authors come from all corners of the world, but this time there are not 103, but 276, including me.

Some of the authors are people who have already gained a lot recognition for their work, some are lesser known online authors. The fact is, with that many different voices, it is bound to be worth the investment.

One area of improvement in this edition is that the book is now structured into topic-specific sections:

  • Manifestos – Declarations, up front, on the Age of  Conversation and why don’t people ‘get it’
  • Keeping Secrets in the Age of Conversation – With  everyone talking so much, why do we need secrets and what is the role of privacy?
  • Moving from Conversation to Action – The practical steps that businesses and brands can take  to move from conversation to something more valuable to their business
  • The Accidental Marketer – What is the attraction of marketing and are there company’s or brands that happen into marketing success?
  • A New Brand of Creative – With the changes in the way  that people communicate and collaborate online, marketing and advertising  companies are needing to reach out and work with a new type of creative team.  What do these “creatives” look like and what are the challenges that they face?
  • My Marketing Tragedy – covering projects that have failed and what was learnt from the failure?
  • Business Model Evolution – Just as the markets and  people are changing, so too are the business models around both clients and  agencies – this chapter will explore the implications of the new business model
  • Life in the Conversation Lane – Bringing it all back to  the individual and  how is life in a digitally connected, social world impacting us all?

Get to know the authors!

Adam Crowe, Adrian Ho, Aki Spicer, Alex Henault, Amy Jussel, Andrew Odom, Andy Nulman, Andy Sernovitz, Andy Whitlock, Angela Maiers, Ann Handley, Anna Farmery, Armando Alves, Arun Rajagopal, Asi Sharabi, Becky Carroll, Becky McCray, Bernie Scheffler, Bill Gammell, Bob Carlton, Bob LeDrew, Brad Shorr, Bradley Spitzer, Brandon Murphy, Branislav Peric, Brent Dixon, Brett Macfarlane, Brian Reich, C.C. Chapman, Cam Beck, Casper Willer, Cathleen Rittereiser, Cathryn Hrudicka, Cedric Giorgi, Charles Sipe, Chris Kieff, Chris Cree, Chris Wilson, Christina Kerley (CK), C.B. Whittemore, Clay Parker Jones, Chris Brown, Colin McKay, Connie Bensen, Connie Reece, Cord Silverstein, Corentin Monot, Craig Wilson, Daniel Honigman, Dan Goldstein, Dan Schawbel, Dana VanDen Heuvel, Dan Sitter, Daria Radota Rasmussen, Darren Herman, Darryl Patterson, Dave Davison, Dave Origano, David Armano, David Bausola, David Berkowitz, David Brazeal, David Koopmans, David Meerman Scott, David Petherick, David Reich, David Weinfeld, David Zinger, Deanna Gernert, Deborah Brown, Dennis Price, Derrick Kwa, Dino Demopoulos, Doug Haslam, Doug Meacham, Doug Mitchell, Douglas Hanna, Douglas Karr, Drew McLellan, Duane Brown, Dustin Jacobsen, Dylan Viner, Ed Brenegar, Ed Cotton, Efrain Mendicuti, Ellen Weber, Emily Reed, Eric Peterson, Eric Nehrlich, Ernie Mosteller, Faris Yakob, Fernanda Romano, Francis Anderson, G. Kofi Annan, Gareth Kay, Gary Cohen, Gaurav Mishra, Gavin Heaton, Geert Desager, George Jenkins, G.L. Hoffman, Gianandrea Facchini, Gordon Whitehead, Graham Hill, Greg Verdino, Gretel Going & Kathryn Fleming, Hillel Cooperman, Hugh Weber, J. Erik Potter, J.C. Hutchins, James Gordon-Macintosh, Jamey Shiels, Jasmin Tragas, Jason Oke, Jay Ehret, Jeanne Dininni, Jeff De Cagna, Jeff Gwynne, Jeff Noble, Jeff Wallace, Jennifer Warwick, Jenny Meade, Jeremy Fuksa, Jeremy Heilpern, Jeremy Middleton, Jeroen Verkroost, Jessica Hagy, Joanna Young, Joe Pulizzi, Joe Talbott, John Herrington, John Jantsch, John Moore, John Rosen, John Todor, Jon Burg, Jon Swanson, Jonathan Trenn, Jordan Behan, Julie Fleischer, Justin Flowers, Justin Foster, Karl Turley, Kate Trgovac, Katie Chatfield, Katie Konrath, Kenny Lauer, Keri Willenborg, Kevin Jessop, Kris Hoet, Krishna De, Kristin Gorski, Laura Fitton, Laurence Helene Borei, Lewis Green, Lois Kelly, Lori Magno, Louise Barnes-Johnston, Louise Mangan, Louise Manning, Luc Debaisieux, Marcus Brown, Mario Vellandi, Mark Blair, Mark Earls, Mark Goren, Mark Hancock, Mark Lewis, Mark McGuinness, Mark McSpadden, Matt Dickman, Matt J. McDonald, Matt Moore, Michael Hawkins, Michael Karnjanaprakorn, Michelle Lamar, Mike Arauz, Mike McAllen, Mike Sansone, Mitch Joel, Monica Wright, Nathan Gilliatt, Nathan Snell, Neil Perkin, Nettie Hartsock, Nick Rice, Oleksandr Skorokhod, Ozgur Alaz, Paul Chaney, Paul Hebert, Paul Isakson, Paul Marobella, Paul McEnany, Paul Tedesco, Paul Williams, Pet Campbell, Pete Deutschman, Peter Corbett, Phil Gerbyshak, Phil Lewis, Phil Soden, Piet Wulleman, Rachel Steiner, Sreeraj Menon, Reginald Adkins, Richard Huntington, Rishi Desai, Beeker Northam, Rob Mortimer, Robert Hruzek, Roberta Rosenberg, Robyn McMaster, Roger von Oech, Rohit Bhargava, Ron Shevlin, Ryan Barrett, Ryan Karpeles, Ryan Rasmussen, Sam Huleatt, Sandy Renshaw, Scott Goodson, Scott Monty, Scott Townsend, Scott White, Sean Howard, Sean Scott, Seni Thomas, Seth Gaffney, Shama Hyder, Sheila Scarborough, Sheryl Steadman, Simon Payn, Sonia Simone, Spike Jones, Stanley Johnson, Stephen Collins, Stephen Cribbett, Stephen Landau, Stephen Smith, Steve Bannister, Steve Hardy, Steve Portigal, Steve Roesler, Steven Verbruggen, Steve Woodruff, Sue Edworthy, Susan Bird, Susan Gunelius, Susan Heywood, Tammy Lenski, Terrell Meek, Thomas Clifford, Thomas Knoll, Tiffany Kenyon, Tim Brunelle, Tim Buesing, Tim Connor, Tim Jackson, Tim Longhurst, Tim Mannveille, Tim Tyler, Timothy Johnson, Tinu Abayomi-Paul, Toby Bloomberg, Todd Andrlik, Troy Rutter, Troy Worman, Uwe Hook, Valeria Maltoni, Vandana Ahuja, Vanessa DiMauro, Veronique Rabuteau, Wayne Buckhanan, William Azaroff, Yves Van Landeghem

04 Apr

Gordon Ramsay’s Marketing Nightmare

Gordon RamsayNot sure if you watch Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen Nightmare, (or if it is broadcast in your part of the world) but I’m a little hooked.  There is plenty not to like about the show, in particular his tendency to humiliate people to get a point across. What there is to like is that every episode is a marketing and branding case study.

Every episode starts with an audit – he assesses the look of the place as he walks in and sits down, reviews the menu and has a meal in the place. He reviews the service and the management.

Nine times out of ten the mistakes are the same.

The quality of food is often poor; no care, no passion. There is no positioning; the menu is confused or bland. The service delivery is chaotic. But one thing stands out: they see the world through their own rather than their customers’ eyes. They live in a vacuum.

The next thing he does is walk the local streets. He checks out the competition, looking for a niche, chats to people in the street to find out what the restaurants’ brand reputation is. He talks to local suppliers and generally gets a feel for the specific environment he is in.

So he looks at the restaurant through the eyes of the customers.  Brand: “The company seen through the eyes of the customer”. Mostly, he comes back with an idea of how to position the restaurant; a signature dish or direction  for the menu that will uniquely position the restaurant. Because he knows his environment he positions away from competitors and ensures that the positioning is relevant to the target market: If he is on the coast it’s about fresh fish, if it is in the heart of the US it is about steak.

He does a local launch promotion with only one purpose; generate word of mouth. He doesn’t start promoting before the house is (more or less) in order though. Now I’ve never eaten in Gordon’s restaurant and although it makes great television, I don’t like his style. But he truly understands marketing and branding.