Well, its new to me anyway eventhough The Persuaders is Ireland's longest running business radio show and celebrates its sixth birthday this May. Apparently its broadcast weekly on Dublin City 's Anna Livia FM 103.2 but this culchie never even realized that the Floozy in the Jacuzzi had given her name to a radio station.
Anyway The Persuaders...
... addresses topical issues from the world of marketing, advertising and public relations. Each show featured interviews with top Irish and international experts, and offers an independent perspective from presenter Alex Gibson, who is a senior lecturer in marketing at the Dublin Institute of Technology. You can sign up to receive weekly programme notification from the show's weblog.
Open Irish Directory -> News & Media -> Podcasting - The Persuaders
Isn't that a handy way of sampling a new show! I'll take in a few episodes before I offer a review.
Absolutely - “Use the card as a marketing tool to sell"
Not at all - "Nobody ever remembers who sent them, except in those cases where they are embarrassed to get one from someone they have forgotten to include in their own list."
It just depends on who you read.
Six Apart's troubles with their TypePad blogging service have been well documented over the last few weeks including their frank and gracious acknowledgement of the issues on their own blogs. They took their customer care standard to an even higher level today though when I received an email asking me to choose what level of compensation I deemed appropriate. The choices were -
While the performance issues caused me some inconvenience I mainly found the service acceptable last month.
Give me 15 free days of TypePad.
The performance issues made it very difficult for me to use the service on multiple occasions during the month.
Give me 30 free days of TypePad.
The performance issues affected me greatly, making my experience unacceptable for most of the month.
Give me 45 free days of TypePad.
I really wasn't affected and feel I got the great service I paid for last month.
Thank you for the offer, but please don't credit my account.
I chose the first because I wasn't badly effected overall. I really have to admire Six Apart for this exemplary initiative and I hope their customers don't take advantage of them on this offer.
I was a fan of Pandora, the music discovery service which created such buzz recently, and used it quite a bit during my free trial but still didn't think it worth the price of subscription when that trial ended. But I received an email this morning which began thus -
"This email arrives at your doorstep after much internal debate at Pandora. We were torn between abiding by our earlier promise to never email you again, while also wanting to at least let you know about a very significant change in our service. We hope you don't mind."
Well I don't really, not too much anyway, considering you didn't charge me previously for a useful service. But what irks me a little is that you broke your promise and it immediately smacks of desperation. Don't you think I'd have heard the great news you want to tell me from other sources, like the blogosphere, especially seeing as most of your early users would have been early adopters anyway.
"Thanks in large part to all of the great feedback we received during the preview, we have had an incredibly successful public launch. The sheer volume of new listeners has led us to accelerate our timetable and release Pandora Version 2 today."
I'm sorry but there's a really hollow ring to this. If everything is so hunky dory for you then why are you breaking promises and sending me a desparation email? Would it be cynical of me to suggest that you're full of BS and never got the number of subscribers you expected so now you have to stoop to this kind of tactic to peddle your wares?
"In addition to many new features (bookmarking, station editing, playlist improvements, etc.), Pandora v2.0 includes a free, ad-supported version. Listeners have the choice to subscribe and stay clear of ads, or use the free service, which will gradually incorporate advertising. What does this mean for you? You can now come back and listen to Pandora as much as you'd like for free--and all the stations you've created remain intact."
Right, so I was only one of a multitude who balked at your paid service so now you're going the ad-supported model because even Microsoft is after endorsing that in Live and their recently leaked memos. Hmmm...
Ok, having said all that I'll give you the benefit of the doubt on this occasion but you've got to realise what a bad taste it leaves to break a promise and then try to justify it. A promise is a promise and if you couldn't keep that one then why should I trust you to keep any more? Can I trust you with my credit card details? Can I trust you when you promise not to share my email address with spammers?
And for godness sake hire a decent PR person who doesn't write such transparent claptrap which so obviously treats your (potential) customers like fools.
Julian Ellison has been making interesting observations about the use of a Google AdWords campaign in marketing a new software product - Tablane. I see that Google still wonders if you meant 'table' and two Irish furniture stores therefore show up in the AdWords sidebar sandwiching Julian's cleverly worded - "No, not like Flock" slogan. Well that answers my question anway ;-)
Great use of the AdWord to specify that a third beta is on the way tomorrow - afterall anyone searching for 'Tablane' right now is likely to be an early adopter, who already has an idea of what the software does and doesn't need to be told in an ad but does want to know when the next version is available to play around with. Interesting to see that they've also used the same wording for a search on "Flock".
So Alan O'Rourke is dropping more hints as to what the Spoilt Child is up to (love that name). This is clever, drip feed marketing, teasing potential customers, dramatizing their progress, making you subscribe to the RSS feed just so that you don't miss an 'episode'.
The best podcasters and bloggers dramatize their lives, intertwine the personal with the professional, the human with the technological. That's what keeps us interested. As Hugh says you've got to create a story that people want to follow themselves and to relate to others. That's why any entrepreneur who isn't yet blogging needs to hop on the Cluetrain.
After seeing the snazzy product demo for Brugo coffee travel mugs I can't help but want one. Visit the site to see how Flash can be exploited to add that elusive cool factor to a well designed and innovative gizmo.
I was lucky enough yesterday to be treated to an evening out at the Mustard Seed Restaurant in Ballingarry, Co. Limeick. And it was the first time I can truly say that I came face to face with The Experience Economy in a restaurant.
Pine, et al. write in their book -
"Those businesses that relegate themselves to the diminishing world of goods and services will be rendered irrelevant. To avoid this fate, you must learn to stage a rich, compelling experience."
Well, a rich and compelling experience is precisely what proprietar Dan Mullane stages at his restaurant and lodge, nestled in the picturesque setting of a slyvan Co. Limerick hillside. From the moment we stepped inside the door of the beautiful old Victorian country residence we knew this was going to be something very special. We were invited into the 'drawing room' for an apéritif on sumptous sofa before a large open hearth fire. The aroma of burning turf reinforced the feeling of authenticity but the atmosphere was never stuffy - instead our hosts were down to earth and warm as the fire. As for the meal... well, without hesitation I can honestly say that it was the best I've ever had.
I'm no foodie but I'm left with a lasting memory of last evening that goes beyond the culinary aspect - it was a wonderful night out in the company of friends, a truly great experience.
The obvious corollary to Seth Godin's proposition that "All Marketers are Liars" is that All Consumers are Suckers. And may I humbly hold myself up as a prime example of consumer gullibility
Guinness: Yes, I'm a sucker for the black stuff but it wasn't always that way. My introduction to the demon drink was the friday evening, after-match (indoor soccer) pub-crawl and I vividly remember my choice of beer frequently being the fly in the alcohol as regards the potential for a drunken rendition of "10 black pints sitting on a table". I proudly procalimed that there was always one white sheep!
But resistance was futile and I was quickly assimilated, largely as Godin would explain, because the Irish stout fits my world view and tells a consistent story. I like the taste, admire the authenticity and feel a certain amount of national pride as I experience the dry roasted bitterness.
As a consumer, what are you a sucker for?