Skip to content

The Industry Review

One Guy's Thoughts On Technology, Social Media, Internet Marketing, Artificial Intelligence, and more

Archive

Tag: ad:tech

Twitter hashtags


Bringing a laptop to a conference is a pretty good idea. Not only it helps summarize notes – I type much faster than I write – but you can also email these notes, share them, post them online, etc.

 
These days it seems every conference – even small ones – have a Twitter Hash tag (and why not? It doesn’t cost anything). What this means is that people can send messages with this tag, and everyone who “listens” to this tag will get it. It’s a bit like group chat. This is one of the things that differentiates Twitter and Facebook (as I mentioned in my one of the first posts in this blog: Explaining Twitter to Facebook Users).

 
This has several effects I didn’t fully grasp until Affiliate Summit East 2009. Motivational, educational, you name it.

 
For starters, days before a conference starts, people already start tweeting using the hash tag (i.e. in Affiliate Summit West 2010 it was #asw10). So even if you’re at home, you’re already starting to feel the ‘vibe’ of the conference, get the excitement. People announce they’ve left their homes, that they’re at the hotel, that they’re checking in, that they’re meeting other participants. Some people even upload photos. And since it is all in real time, you get pulled into it. You feel you’re a part of the conference before it even started.

 
Furthermore, during sessions people constantly tweet about what they listen to. This proves to be extremely useful from several reasons:

 
So my second point: you know who is present. During one session I discovered that two of my Twitter friends (whom I never met in person until then!) were in the room with me. We tweeted each. One even uploaded an image of the speaker (in real time, of course), so I could even tell where he was sitting in the room. Later I went to meet him.

 
Third, people constantly tweet the highlights of a session, the important points. There was one moment where I missed what the speaker said, but knew it was important. I looked at the stream, and multiple people tweeted that point. I just copied this directly into my notes. Moreover, thanks to the Twitter 140 characters limit, the point has to be concise, and this greatly facilitates the transmission of ideas in this context.

 
Fourth, you get to “hear” what’s going on in other sessions as well. So in a sense it allows you to attend multiple sessions at once. I actually took some of the tweets from other sessions as notes, as they were very relevant and interesting.

 
Fifth, one session allowed people to ask questions through Twitter and had its own hash tag. This certainly improves interaction between audience and speaker. Another session I attended had a contest where people suggested ideas and at the end, there was a reward for the best one.

 
Sixth, I tweeted quite a lot of the good highlights from sessions I attended. Some were actually retweeted by people who were NOT at the conference. So this helped spread useful information beyond the conference. In my opinion, this can be said to make Twitter itself a more valuable site. I remember that during Blog World (a conference that took place several months ago and I didn’t attend) there were occasional retweets of highlights from their sessions – some I found fascinating. And I wasn’t even there!

 
Finally, sites and conferences now take this into consideration. For example, the conference I speak at next month, Social Media 201, constantly “listens” and places on its website tweets that use the #sm201 hashtag. Or another example: ad:tech NY had a huge screen which featured select tweets that use the #adtechny hash tag (see the above image).

 
I think what we’ve seen here is a glimpse into the future of education. Where future students will get more and more opportunities to interact with the speakers and each other in real time, as well as potentially virtually “attend” sessions they are not present in. So not only the conference hash tag is great for passing information and ‘bonding’ everyone, but it also contributes a great deal to the effectiveness of taught sessions. I find this fascinating.

 

 Mail this post

Popularity: 5% [?]

Post to Twitter Tweet This Post

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Share/Bookmark

poken3


 
Tomorrow I’m leaving to Affiliate Summit West. I’ve been to Affiliate Summit East (ASE: read about it here), but never been to the Vegas version.

 
Before ASE, a friend told me to bring 200-500 business cards as I will be needing them. I did, and he was right. I also got roughly this number from people I met. Then I got a similar number at ad:tech. I classified them to several groups (companies I’m interested in working with, friends, people I met, etc) but it started becoming unwieldy. With so many business cards lying around, despite my best intentions I started losing some.

 
It is then I remembered the Poken device many people had at ASE. I don’t know how, I think people with Platinum passes got one for free? But all the “cool kids” seemed to have one and I didn’t. I wanted one too – was pretty easy to guess what it does based on how I saw people use it. I know I’m cool, but I wanted to be Cool (capitalized), you know?

 
Therefore, when I saw someone talking about it on Twitter, I bumped in and said “I wish I had a Poken. All the cool kids have it”. To my surprise, someone wrote me – we’ll send one to you so you can be a cool kid too (definitely boosted my ego). Awesome!

 
I got my Poken and have since then been itching to use it. It seems that next week I’ll get plenty of opportunities. Still going to bring my paper business cards as well, but it seems this will greatly help in managing the virtual ones.

 
So what is a Poken?

 
A Poken is a small device that has multiple cute shapes. Mine is the “Voodoo poken”. Using a web interface, you can create your virtual business card with everything you would’ve included on an ordinary one, and much, much more. Take a look at the screenshots I took to see what I mean.

 

poken

 
poken2

The Poken allows you to get other people’s virtual business cards instantly with all the information they include. This can be done simply by “touching” your Poken hand with the other Poken’s hand. Like a handshake :) Later on, you have access to all their information as well as the time line of the connection.

 
Sounds awfully cool to me, and definitely the way of the future. Just like the Kindle (and related devices) will eventually replace paper products, so will Pokens eventually replace business cards. Easier to manage. Easier to customize. Stored permanently – I only see advantages.

 
If you want to get one, just click the banner below. Note that if you use the promo code IndustryReview you get 10% until the end of January.

 
poken4

 

 Mail this post

Popularity: 1% [?]

Post to Twitter Tweet This Post

Technorati Tags: , , , , , ,

  • Share/Bookmark

Twitter Money

 

A conversation I often have with fellow internet marketers who are not in Twitter is: is it worth the time investment from a financial perspective? Usually I am told that this is obviously not the case, and thus, disregarding the fact it’s a good way to befriend people, it’s not a good investment in terms of time and money.

 
Although I know some people who have been monetizing Twitter rather successfully, my answer is: yes, this is right in the short term, but no in the longer term. Yes, I’ve made some money using Twitter with SponsoredTweets and Ad.Ly, as well as the occasional affiliate offer, but overall if one wants to monetize his time, then there are definitely easier to make money online.

 
That being said, every day I meet great people and make many useful business connections. To use one example, if it weren’t for Twitter, I wouldn’t have met the incredible, pancake loving, Darren Williger (@williger) who invited me to participate as a panelist in a webinar series which is not only great fun, but will be monetized soon as well. Nor would I have been invited to ad:tech as press (yes, I came thanks to this blog – but ad:tech heard of my blog through Twitter). Or be invited to the MarketLeverage VIP Yacht Party during Affiliate Summit East (which obviously was an event many would have paid to participate in and was incredible from a networking perspective).

 
Personally, I think this is just the beginning. The more time passes, the more people I know, the greater my online presence and the possible networking that I can do. So judging Twitter just by the immediate ROI is a mistake, in my opinion. Ask me again in 6 to 12 months and I’m confident I will have significantly better examples than the ones I’ve given.

 
This conclusion is emphasized by the fact I’ve been very active on Twitter for a rather short amount of time – only since the end of July 2009 (though I did register in March).

 

 Mail this post

Popularity: 2% [?]

Post to Twitter Tweet This Post

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,

  • Share/Bookmark

Too busy

I know I haven’t been here for a while. Things were incredibly busy for me, and I kept postponing updating my blog. However, when the third person asked me whether I’ve abandoned it, I realized it is time to post something.

 
Unlike other posts, I’ll just write what I’ve been up to. I have several posts I intend to publish soon, but they’ll have to wait a bit.

 
In the past few weeks I’ve:

  1. Finally turned my company, U Labs, into a legal entity. This meant (finally) forming an LLC, getting it a bank account, a credit card, commissioning a logo, commissioning a professional looking website (not that the one I created using Wordpress is bad, but well, it did take me around 30 minutes to make – I want to make a better impression than that). This is still not complete.

     

  2. Had to comply with the new FTC regulations regarding affiliates. This meant going one by one to every single site I have and adding certain disclaimers and making changes where this makes sense. Since I have no sponsored posts in this blog, I actually didn’t add any here. I did receive several offers in the past to do so, but I always thought they would stick out and felt I had to reject them. Of course, I’ll be honest, if the price was more, uhm, tempting, I might’ve made a different decision, but for now every single post I have written was initiated by myself – I’ve sponsored nothing here for money.

     

  3. Started participating in a weekly series of webinar events as a panelist. In the past few months I’ve joined a fantastic mastermind group that consists of seasoned internet marketers who share their wisdom in weekly calls. This series of webinars is but one of our joint projects. Last week we had our first (and test) session: despite some technical hiccups, it went extremely well. Our goal is to share our expertise on various subjects. In this session I discussed basic aspects of SEO and intend to do this a lot more in the coming weeks. More information soon. I’ll just say this was phenomenally fun – I had a blast!

     

  4. Started a massive hunt of ad networks. From various reasons, I’m looking for good ad networks, particularly those that provide decent traffic volume, easy to configure campaigns (without requiring to go through an account manager) and (ideally) international traffic as well. Fortunately, ad:tech occurred pretty recently and was a good source of those, so I started going one by one and testing every network I found. In addition, I posted some questions in forums and tried these sources as well. This takes time. Unfortunately, money too – but no pain no gain. Any suggestions would be welcome, by the way!

     

  5. Had my mother as a guest for 10 days. ’nuff said, no? :)

 
I expect to have more time soon and then I’ll return to blogging more consistently.

 

 Mail this post

Popularity: 2% [?]

Post to Twitter Tweet This Post

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Share/Bookmark

ad tech new york 2009

As I wrote in my previous post which dealt with my personal experiences at ad:tech, I set up quite a lot of meetings with companies who contacted me. This turned out to be a very positive experience because many – if not most – would’ve been companies that I would’ve been interested in chatting with anyway, so rather than me having to chase them, a meeting was set up with allocated time. I never played the journalist until this conference but really enjoyed this.

 
Here are some of the companies I met with. The vast majority were very relevant to what I currently do or my background, but not all were. Those I felt I have nothing to write about I omitted.

 
If anyone spots any mistakes I’ve made – which is possible, since I didn’t take notes but rather counted on the brochures I diligently collected, please do let me know!

 
2ergo has a technology that enables conducting marketing campaigns on mobile platforms. Interestingly, this strongly resonates with a session I attended the next day (which I’ll describe in the next post) that says teens prefer SMS texting to any medium, really: email, chat, etc. Although I (currently) don’t do anything that involves mobile advertising I can’t help but think that maybe I can utilize this somehow.

 
BurstMedia: my first question to Jarvis Coffin of BurstMedia is “what does your motto ‘Discover the Long Tail’ mean?”. His response was that they specialize in niche websites – even those that focus on extremely specific subjects. They own a large network of niche sites and enable very targeted advertising on these sites. An example he gave me – and I don’t remember the exact site – was something along the lines of SquirrelRehab.com. Apparently this site, despite the fact it’s extremely nichy, not only gets traffic, but a very respectable amount as well. Quite surprised me! This is useful both for potential publishers as well as potential advertisers.

 
I’m thinking of submitting my, ehm, nichiest site there, which gets very decent traffic but monetizes very poorly.

 
measuring success

 
Elephant Traffic: although I’m very familiar with the concept of domain parking, which refers to domains that are not actively used but rather instead show relevant ads, Elephant Traffic tackles it in a rather unusual method – by simply taking the search query from a search engine and matching it to a parked domain. i.e. if someone searches for “buying toothbrushes” they’ll take him to a domain they park buyingtoothbrushes.com (this is a made up example – I doubt they have this domain). This offers very cheap and yet very targeted traffic – since it is extremely likely that those who type search query this would in fact be interested in buying toothbrushes. Again, very useful for both potential advertisers and publishers.

 
I liked the concept and think I’ll attempt to use it from both ends: both use some of the domains I’m not using with them (unfortunately for me there are about 30 of those!) – and also explore getting some of their traffic for the offers I promote.

 
eZanga is another one of those companies that I would’ve gone to talk to regardless of my being press or not. They are offer a PPC search platform that enables high quality, high volume, traffic for competitive prices. Definitely on my list (for a while, actually) of companies to try.

 
Looksmart is a second tier PPC search engine network that offers competitive prices. Second tier refers to the fact that they are not Google, Yahoo or Bing. I was actually familiar with Looksmart before I spoke to them and heard good things – though I’ve never used them myself. I definitely intend to give them a shot. Until now, the only second tier PPC search engine that I liked has been 7search (and I still want to kick myself for forgetting to visit their booth!)

 
As a side note: From what I heard – and sadly, based on my own experience as well – many of the second tier search engines offer really low quality traffic (and often fraudulent traffic – traffic that never converts).

 
geo targeting

 
MyPRGenie enables submitting your own press releases. The cool thing is they offer many free yet still useful services. There are, of course, paid subscriptions which offer more, but for the starting entrepreneur this could be very useful.

 
Netezza was different from other companies I spoke to in the sense that what they do is not really relevant for me now, but would’ve been tremendously relevant for me in the past. They offer a hardware implementation of a data warehousing relational database (such as Oracle, MS SQL Server, MySQL, Sybase, etc). As you can imagine, this offers a significant performance boost (if I recall correctly – and I may not remember correctly – a boost that offers 100 times speed performance). I was really surprised to hear such a technology existed let alone utilized as this could have been extremely useful for me in my last workplace (I worked at a hedge fund and our major bottleneck was analyzing data – even a 5 time speed boost would’ve been significantly useful for us). I can think of three of my friends that can benefit from this technology and might have not heard of it, so will let them know.

 

 Mail this post

Popularity: 2% [?]

Post to Twitter Tweet This Post

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Share/Bookmark

adtech New York

Although I was not sure I’ll be attending ad:tech NY 2009 until the last moment (because of various family and personal illnesses), I’m certainly glad I did. Overall, I can say it was a blast! Bigger than the last conference I attended, Affiliate Summit East (ASE), but somehow less overwhelming too – perhaps because there were more companies that really did not relate to anything I am doing.

 
After thinking about this for a while, I’ve decided to break my ad:tech summary into three separate posts. One describing my personal experiences, the other describing a few companies I got a chance to talk to, and the last describing the (few) sessions I attended. This is a good point to mention that unlike in ASE, this time I came as press.

 
udi schlessinger's press badge

 

Journalism's very best

Journalism's finest



 
Where shall I begin? Ad:tech took place at the Javits conference center and was enormous. It took me about 15 minutes to just find where I can obtain my press badge. But it was well worth the effort, since after getting it, I saw the monstrous line for ’standard’ passes – there must have been hundreds of people waiting in line!
 
As you can see, it was pretty crowded

As you can see, it was pretty crowded



 
Since this was the first time I came as press, I was very determined to do my job properly. About 1-2 weeks before the conference started, I started getting requests from companies to interview them. Since I got so many, I tried to only pick those that are relevant to me/my background in a way. Despite this filtering I must’ve set meetings with about 15 companies.

 
I started walking the exhibitor booths. The first person I bumped into was Eric Schechter, Clickbooth’s Social Media Manager and a really great guy. I don’t know whether you’re familiar with Eric’s videos (here’s one for example), but he makes the most hilarious videos for Clickbooth. I politely asked him to participate in one of the videos and when he hesitated I resorted to begging. Hopefully I’ll participate in one of those – when crazy is required, I’m always the first to raise my hand ;) .

 
Later I bumped into my ex-boss and CEO from 7 years ago (in my previous career as a technical lead/software architect, I created/redesigned almost all of the company’s products). Since both of us changed industries during this time, we were both quite shocked to see each other. Certainly a surreal experience for me. I also bumped into a friend I haven’t seen since 1992 (another surprising incident). Considering several friends of mine attended ad:tech and I didn’t see them even once since the place was so big, I consider the former occurrences one of those weird coincidences that occasionally happen.

 
Although I had a press pass and was really eager to attend some of the sessions, I spent the entire first day almost exclusively running from one meeting to another. Almost surprisingly, this was actually a lot of fun! My first instinct was to ‘pat myself on the shoulder’ for setting meetings with so many companies that are truly interesting and relevant for me, but after talking to several company executives, I realize that the filtering was mutual: it seems many – if not all – contacted me because my background was relevant to them. Most were familiar with my blog and background.

 
I’ll describe those companies in the next post.

 
Although I did get to attend a few sessions, I simply didn’t have enough time to attend as many as I wanted. Fortunately the third day consisted only of sessions, and most people were gone by then (no more exhibitors).

 
In addition I spent a lot of time talking to the various companies – there were just so many! Interesting how my focus changed in the past few months. In ASE I was primarily interesting in finding unique affiliate offers, so had a lot of conversations with both large and small affiliate networks. But now my hands are pretty full in this respect, so this time I was more interested in finding interesting/cheap/unique traffic sources, so primarily was talking to ad networks and other companies that offer equivalent services.

 
During the day I met many friends I know from the NY affilate meetups, from ASE as well as some of my affiliate managers from some networks that I have not met in person until now. It was great seeing Casan Van Langen, my affiliate manager from AzoogleAds, and finally meeting Melissa Emmett, my affiliate manager from MarketLeverage.

 
Also great to meet friends I know, such as Dina Riccobono (from MarketLeverage), Heather Smith, Miki Rapoport (see his picture below closing a 7 figure deal – a moment I was lucky to capture in real time), Ian Fernando, Ken Chen, Steve Fulop, and many more.

 
Miki closing a big deal

Miki closing a big deal



 
I also had a fantastic meeting with Richard Young (from Arcamax publishing). Just like the last time we have met, we had an absolutely great conversation. I wouldn’t have met him if it weren’t for the yacht party in ASE!

 
One fun thing about ad:tech was the Twitter board. There were a few of those, and they included tweets that mentioned the #adtechny hashtag. I think this was moderated, because I found myself talking to a guy next to it and neither of us saw our tweets on the board. Though eventually I did manage to get one in ;)

 
The full Twitter board

The full Twitter board



 
My tweeted message

My tweeted message



 

Parties

A major aspect of these conferences is the after hours parties. Irritatingly – but understandably – they all took place on the first day. I’ve been invited to six separate parties on Wednesday, and planned to attend three. Unfortunately, I forgot to RSVP one (Clickbooth’s). I went to Azoogleleads’ heaven and hell’s themed party which was awesome (and really embarrassed my wife when I wore the glowing red horns, unlike the standard ‘cloth’ ones, during the entire time. Hey, what’s wrong with some attention? :P ). Unfortunately I can’t provide a picture (believe me, I want to!) because the photographer seems to have omitted it from his website, and did not respond to my email…

 
heavenandhell

 
Later I went to the VIP Mix+Mingle event (organized by Advertise.com, Adknowledge and GenieKnows) – which was tons of fun as well. Still need to find my picture which was taken there somehow.

 
I felt kind of stupid when I saw Clickbooth’s party was right across the street from the VIP Mix+Mingle event, and I couldn’t go because I didn’t RSVP… Eric later chastised me for not calling him (I didn’t have his number!).. next time.

 
I also had to miss the BlogUp, an event organized on the second day that aimed bloggers to meet other bloggers – since by then I started feeling unwell again. Based on what I heard, it was a big success and a lot of fun.

 

 Mail this post

Popularity: 3% [?]

Post to Twitter Tweet This Post

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  • Share/Bookmark

ad tech


 
Tomorrow ad:tech NY begins. I will definitely be attending, and am very excited about it (it’s my first ad:tech!). More importantly, I’ll share anything interesting I see and hear there with my readers.

 
If you’re in the area and feel like meeting, please send me a quick note – it’ll be great to meet!

 Mail this post

Popularity: 1% [?]

Post to Twitter Tweet This Post

Technorati Tags: ,

  • Share/Bookmark
Get Adobe Flash playerPlugin by wpburn.com wordpress themes