Archive for the 'BluePoint' Category

BluePoint of View has a new home!

Santa came early to BluePoint, and we’re excited to share our gift with you!

Check out our brand new website, and new home of the BluePoint of View blog. Please update your bookmarks and RSS feeds to www.bluepointmktg.com/blog moving forward.

Thanks and Happy Holidays!

DEMOfall09: Six Picks

The other day I blogged about some of the really passionate entrepreneurs I met at DEMOfall09 and I referenced the products that caught my eye. While I did not get to dig into all 70 or so companies while I was there, here are a few that I found worth noting:

Waze – This is a way cool, and I think much-needed, application that brings real-time traffic intelligence/information to the masses via the masses (crowd sourcing). The app works on GPS-enabled Smartphones and sends back GPS points as you drive.  The idea is that through the Waze community, traffic, road changes and other information is collected automatically and anonymously. Drivers can also take a more active role by reporting on new situations from their mobile device.   I need this for my suddenly hellish morning commutes and can’t wait to find out when it will work on my Windows Smartphone (they’ve promised Symbian and Win support as of this week). It also supports iPhone and Android.

WhoDoYouKnowAt, LLC – Think of this enterprise app as LinkedIn on Steroids or perhaps more aptly, LinkedIn With Security Layer.  It is a free and private (note: NOT social networking) networking application that allows you to leverage relationships for personal, business or civic gain in a confidential and tiered manner. CEO Lee Blaylock is a guy I’d bet on or want with me in a foxhole.  He developed the application after years working at Oracle, and I think he’s onto something. After all, how many introductions have you ever made or been asked to make via LinkedIn? What makes this app different is a “Levels of Trust” system that allows your online relationships to more accurately reflect those in the real world. With each connection, you can set their “Level of Trust” to reflect your real-life relationship. For example, when sharing a contact’s information with certain contacts, you can choose to remain anonymous. With your more trusted relationships, however, you can choose to share all of your network information.

Traackr – This is a Web 2.0 application for brand marketers, PR and marketing firms and in-house communications professionals. It allows users to harness the gold mine of information in social networks, blogs and Twitter. The application is called “A-list” or “Authority List,” and it helps you identify the people with the most clout so that you can target and track them. The company claims it can provide you a list of the most influential people online for any given subject as measured by the three “Rs” – reach, relevance and resonance. I plan to check it out in more detail soon.

MoLo Rewards, Inc. – This company has developed a wireless coupon application that allows users – via a cell phone – to scan items at the point of sale to instantly redeem coupons or loyalty rewards using either Near Field Communication (NFC) or RFID. MoLo Rewards also will allow consumers to link and join participating retail loyalty programs and earn points for every purchase by simply waving their cell phone in front of the cash register at the time of purchase.  These guys need to lock up some of the top pharmacy chains and then try to tackle the grocery giants. If they succeed, the coupon book goes the way of the daily paper or weekly shopper. CEO Robert Sprogis brought his “A” game to the DEMO stage, which further impressed me.

 

Enthusem – Can direct mail make a comeback? Enthusem is betting it can with a little Web 2.0 assistance. The company has set up an elegant approach to sending very high quality, personalized post cards through an online greeting card site that lets users send personal printed greeting cards that include a URL and a pickup code, which the recipient can type in online to see a custom video, read an extended note, or listen to an mp3 that you uploaded. This is CEO Steve Tingiris’ third company and maybe it will be the charm.

POWR – Believe it or not, these guys are bringing a new hardware solution to market. POWR (Point of Wealth Register) is a kiosk with an ATM-like interface that helps “unbanked” or hourly employees like bartenders, waiters, blackjack dealers, etc. make fast and easy deposits to personal accounts (think 401K or 529)or to make money transfers, pay bills, etc. These guys had a lot of spunk. CEO Doug Lindstrom is a veteran bartender so you know what his “light bulb” moment for his company must have been – many a morning waking up wondering where all of his tips went.  If POWR doesn’t end up getting bought by CoinStar or Western Union, I think they just might succeed on their own.

DotSyntax’s Digsby – If you have not tried it out (I have been using it for about a year), Digsby is an easy-to-use desktop application that helps people save time by managing their IM, email and social network accounts all from one location. DotSyntax unveiled the latest version of its social-media management tool at DEMO, and the new version is geared specifically towards helping solve the Twitter clutter and chaos problem. One of the key new features is a reversal from the Twitter client standard, in which tweet streams are displayed newest first. Digsby shows the oldest first with the logic being that it is easier to read threads from the beginning. I am not sure I agree, and I have yet to check out the new features yet. That’s what weekends are for …

— Posted by Tim Hurley

The Top 10 Ways to Annoy Your Client

1) Make her endure endless weekly status meetings where every member of your team slogs through the minute detail of his/her daily contribution to the account. Make sure to let her know how many calls you made for every pitch.
2) Forward long emails where the key message/action item is buried at the very bottom of several paragraphs of text. “Reply to all” a lot.
3) Cross your fingers and hope your client won’t see the feature article that mentions everyone in the industry but her company. Bad news is best handled with a “wait and see” strategy.
4) Make sure all the files you attach bear the client company name as the first word. I’m sure she doesn’t have many of those in her filing system.
5) Share with your client. She wants to know all about your political affiliations, children, pets etc.
6) Don’t sweat the small stuff:

  • There’s really no difference between who and whom
  • I and me are interchangeable nowadays – myself is a good catch-all.

7) If a client isn’t available to review/approve, make sure you cover your ass with an email and move on to the next thing.
8) Clients love PR speak! Terms like “secure coverage”, “moving forward”, and “out-of-pocket” make them feel like you really know what you are talking about.
9) Clients also love a clever and original turn-of-phrase. Use the following terms liberally in all client communications and press releases, too:

  • Under the radar
  • Stealth mode
  • View from 40,000 feet
  • Best-in-class
  • World-class
  • Cutting-edge

10) Always be sure show up at the clients’ offices in droves. The more the merrier. Fly in the night before, stay at an expensive hotel, heck, might as well go out for that steak dinner you’ve been hankering for. Be sure to bring the intern.

— Posted by Alison Moore

About those resolutions…

As we dive right into another year, I’ll be doing my best to keep my 2009 resolutions. These fall into two categories – personal resolutions (less salt! better posture!) and professional resolutions (blog more!).

With the latter in mind, I finally jumped on the twitter bandwagon. I honestly didn’t think it was going to be worth my while or something I’d enjoy, much less be active in. I had brushed it aside as yet one more thing I’d need to keep up with in my busy life. But, I can admit when I’m wrong! I lost my twitter virginity a week ago, and I’m totally hooked.

I can follow all the bloggers and reporters that I try to read each day, but much more efficiently. I can make new connections. I can share interesting news. I can see what other marketers are trying out. But what I like best so far is the instant feedback I can get from peers.

Case in point…I recently tweeted “what’s going to be the BIG thing for B2B marketers in 2009?” and within a few moments I had some great thoughts back from fellow tweeters (or is it twitterers?):

  • @ardath421: content publishing for increased engagement in 2009
  • @smersy_genius: Sales 2.0 gains more traction and B2B Marketers learn to directly increase sales productivity.  http://is.gd/eEfS
  • @joemktg: Toss-up between PURLs for all communications, and optimizing landing pages and web sites to squeeze every bit of $$ from clicks
  • @stevewoods: my vote is for lead scoring and closer alignment with sales. In a resource constrained environment, marketing for results wins

Have something to add? Follow me at @MelissaBP and let me know. Happy New Year, and hope to “tweet” you soon!

— Posted by Melissa Coyle

Cupcakes, Roses, Facebook Posts … One of These Things Is not Like the Other

Today I celebrated an event that happens every year, yet never ceases to amaze me … my birthday. It is a day that I thank my mother for having me and take time to appreciate all of those who care for me.

My colleagues sang, my manager satisfied my sweet tooth with decadent cupcakes, my husband sent roses, my friends and family mailed cards … and my Facebook following sent wall posts. So many wall posts, in fact, that I don’t know if I actually saw them all.

Don’t get me wrong, I love the sentiment. Their well wishes floored me. But then, they just kept coming and coming. It made me wonder why they sent them and if they even really cared that it was my birthday. Maybe they simply didn’t want to be left out of the mass birthday cheer!

Social media has changed the game for our clients and for our own personal milestones in so many ways already. There were no voicemails blinking red on my office phone, and only one musical e-card in my inbox. Could it be that the more “social” we become, the less we actually take the time to truly interact?

I can’t help but wonder what it will be like next year. Until then … I think it’s time for another cupcake.

— Posted by Erica Camilo

The Time (To Get To Work) Is Now!

No matter how you voted, no matter what you thought of Obama and McCain’s campaign strategies and tactics, no matter the color of your skin or your state and no matter how you are feeling this morning about whether “your guy” won or lost, you have to feel energized, excited and blessed about being part of history last night. Not since 9/11 have we witnessed such patriotism and pride among our people.

Here’s hoping for a few things.

1) That race relations can take a quantum leap forward under the Obama administration.
2) That the leaders – and the common men and women – of this country can be galvanized and that America once again find its sense of urgency to win and regain and retain its position of global leadership.
3) That the engine that drives not only the U.S. economy, but the entire world will get a boost, not for a few hours or days but for the foreseeable future.
4) That the sense of fear, uncertainty and doubt – and paralysis –that has gripped this great nation the past few months will be swept away by this New Day in America.

There’s no doubt that many serious social, political and economic challenges remain, but if last night’s election tells us anything, with a lot of faith, commitment and hard work they can be overcome. Onward!

Moving Forward

It’s been a scary couple of weeks. The Wall Street roller coaster continues. Pink slips are being issued at Yahoo and countless others in the media world. Job losses at the big financial services firms will dwarf those in tech. Even B2B and consumer tech stalwarts like SAP and Apple are starting to talk about “poor visibility” in the quarters ahead. Here at BluePoint we’re not naïve to think that we won’t see the impact of the larger economic downturn. At the same time, we are optimistic (notice I did not say cautiously) about where we are headed, but having been through a few other “dips” in the past couple of decades, we aren’t delusional about what 2009 will bring. We’re fortunate to be working with some really solid clients and since we know we need to prove our worth every day, we’re hardly standing still. In fact, we’re adding to our team. Just this week we welcome Manager of Account Services Liz Moise to the fold. We’re really excited to be adding someone of Liz’s caliber and background. She has really diverse skill set that we know will be a big addition to our current marketing, PR and social media expertise. Even better, Liz brings a design background, including some great experience in art direction- both in-house and on her own. She comes to BluePoint from the open innovation company, InnoCentive, which is a crowd sourcing play. As Marketing Communications and PR Manager, Liz and her team did some great work with national media, social media and bloggers and built up an amazing community of “Solvers” to tackle global design, manufacturing and engineering challenges in the areas of science, IT, clean tech and healthcare. She also launched and maintained their first corporate blog as well as engaging their Solvers through twitter and Facebook. Liz also has some excellent mobile experience. She spent two years art directing and account managing at Nokia Interactive Advertising (formerly Enpocket) for mobile clients including Verizon, Ford, Pepsi and others.

Welcome to the team Liz. Looking forward to your contributions to BluePoint and our clients!


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BluePoint provides a comprehensive range of consulting, marketing and public relations services to global technology and professional services companies.

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