Thursday, July 31, 2008

fusedlogic is on the Twitter Brand Index

Johnathan over at Fluent Simplicity was kind enough to add fusedlogic to his Twitter Brand Index. We thank him kindly for that and I think you'll find it interesting to see all the various brands currently on Twitter, I mean beyond us of course. No doubt you'll recognize many of them.

Also, stay tuned, I'm currently writing a series of (3) articles on social media for Troy Media's technology beat news. Troy Media has well over a hundred thousand subscribers with the overwhelming majority being media and journalists of all shapes and sizes throughout North America...

To that end, as recently as this morning, I finished a phone interview with a world renowned author and entrepreneur...this is going to be a great story.

My next interview is with yet another world renowned author and entrepreneur on this becomes an even bigger story, if that's possible. (Tooot, there goes my horn!!!) Toss in a top business executive from a large enterprise in my home province of Alberta possibly and a couple of bloggers and we've got ourselves a ball game.

I feel especially blessed today to say the least...

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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Twitter, LA earthquake and my family...

A few days ago I commented here on a blog post related to the fact that people on a plane in Bangalore were using Twitter to communicate about what was happening to their plane. I was a taken aback by the near real time reporting of something like that.

Well, I'm working today and I see someone mention an earthquake in LA on Twitter. My wife and daughter and other family members are in LA today. They were in fact at Disneyland at the time of the quake. My wife and sister-in-law were in line at Space Mountain when the quake hit. My daughter was with her grandmother in line to see Goofy. She, thankfully doesn't know what happened being only 3 yrs old, she moved on to the next ride she wanted to go on pretty quickly as I understand it...the evacuation shut that down of course.

I was attempting to get in touch with my wife while watching the various "tweets" on Twitter about the quake.

I've officially lived through a world event on Twitter today where my family was directly involved...quite an experience. Social media has all sorts of benefits to it and there are drawbacks too but in this case I was happy to be able to ascertain the severity of what happened in near real time and without a CNN producer deciding what was being told. Further, I was able to combine both CNN coverage with Twitter to get a more complete picture.

The great news is basically everyone in LA is ok, including in this case, MY FAMILY and that's the main thing. A pretty nerve racking hour to say the least...

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Jeremiah Owyang and a proper thank-you...

Yesterday, I complimented Jeremiah Owyang on his blog post by providing my own post here and also publicly on Twitter, he responded with a "Thank-you."

We're all busy and still, I believe that's no excuse for poor manners. Jeremiah demonstrated that even though he has thousands of followers collectively in "his" community on Twitter and elsewhere online, he is still able to take the time to thank someone specifically for something they've said or done.

Like my wife and I say to our daughter, "manners never go on a holiday."

Of course, we all get to choose who, how and if we want to respond to someone online or offline. That said, I believe that just like a general lack of ability to effectively and properly follow-up in a business context when opportunity knocks, there also seems to be a general lack of "manners," on the Internet today as well.

Call me "old-fashioned" if you like but I believe it proper to "thank" people when they take the time to respond to anything I've done, regardless of the intent or comment being good or bad. This is especially tough when someone is saying something less than positive about you, your company or the work you're doing. This is the true test of the Internet today. We continue to see large companies running and hiding because they don't want to stand up to the scrutiny.

Welcome to a general test of our morals, philosophy and character, how we respond or don't respond says something about us as human beings. To me this is at the core of who I am, it guides me and my business dealings every single day and I don't ever waver from it.

So to everyone who cares to make contact with me or my company, know that I will always "thank-you" for your time and comment regardless of its content, as long as, you're being respectable. I respect your opinion, I may not always agree with it and I understand that you are entitled to it. The fact that you took some of your valuable time on this planet to communicate with me in general says something positive about me and/or my company.

Thank-you for reading this post and I hope you have a profitable day.

Friday, July 25, 2008

The power of Twitter - Bangalore

I was at the Edmonton Indy today and had a great time. Took some great video track-side and met some great people too. That said, today's post from Jeremiah Owyang is today....more important!

Just read this!

Not on Twitter yet? Start by following me.

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Thursday, July 24, 2008

Business on a silver platter...(shakes head)

One thing that really annoys me is when I attempt to land quality business right on the doorstep of others and they don't even acknowledge the email, tweet, plurk, or phone message I may leave or a combination thereof in some cases...

Yes it's true, I may smell...

That said however, it may be likely that "they" are the ones smelling up the joint. Smelling of arrogance, rudeness and possibly incompetence. There's no doubt I'm better off, I certainly wouldn't want to put my clients within a country mile of someone so ignorant. In this day and age of multiple ways of communication and notification...there's simply no excuse.

I was just chatting with a client about how brutal some business people have become at actually following up.

So, the status of which firm will be getting the video/portal/seo work on one of my projects is, simple. That nice piece of business will now be directed to a competitor.

Want more business? Learn to be nice and to follow-up effectively...

What's the point of using micro-blogging, if when someone reaches out to do business, you ignore them to talk about BS instead? It makes little sense to me...

Acknowledging me would have taken 3 seconds on Twitter...this girl is well-known on Twitter and Plurk and else where...even Guy Kawasaki and the gazillion emails he gets has returned my emails...class act.

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Saturday, July 19, 2008

When will social media be profitable?

In many boardrooms, top exec's are struggling with questions around social media and Web 2.0, at least that's what I'm being told...if, and if so, how, why and what to implement are questions of the day.

The tendency to jump in with both feet as part of being a forward thinking organization (or at least to have the appearance as such) is great and why not? After all, there is potential value everywhere. Research, ability to respond to, and engage with, customers, innovate regarding products and services, shift markets with new strategies, the opportunities for value generation are immense.

Unfortunately, quite often the wrong questions are being asked. In the context of a large organization that can be really scary and expensive. For example: When trying to justify the investment of a social media strategy, its development and implementation, a CEO might ask.

"When will this social media initiative be profitable?"

Not an entirely unreasonable question in many cases, however, CEO's and their executive teams need to understand something fundamental about this entire space, culture and community. This isn't a new marketing event. Social media success is a long-term immersing of cultures. The corporate culture with that of the Web 2.0 or social media culture. Clearly most are starting at an obvious disconnect if you consider the question stated above. This will eventually permeate throughout the organization if it's not addressed early.

Social media and Web 2.0 IS innovation. It's innovation related to how we communicate with our customers, innovation in how we engage in commerce related activities with our customers, how we build and grow business models, in this case highly focused on our customers.

For example, micro-hacking sessions are going on as we speak and will be done in an hour or two from now, and as a result, large amounts of caffeine and/or pizza will be consumed. I'm also willing to bet innovation has taken place and a new micro-app will have been launched. The Internet is the raw and real "focus group" of today, if the app is spreads, if it isn't cool the team will know quickly. No discussion about profitability or break-even points, no business plan constructed or spreadsheets compiled. Talk about innovation on the fly. Now do you have to take into consider the legal ramifications of these moves, in some cases, more than others the answer is yes.

So, how does a slow moving oil tanker of an organization react to that mentality? Should they? Ahh, YES! Large industries are being impacted one micro-app at a time and many of them have no idea at this point. For example, micro-financing. The rumor is that Twitter will soon integrate a micro-finance application called Is the banking industry aware of the potential impact here? Maybe. We'll see.

The overwhelming majority of CEOs and execs have yet to experience this and still these situations are producing new opportunities for business (it certainly has for my company). Social media is changing the way people are living, growing, engaging and yes "profiting" within the social media and general business spaces.

So where am I going with this? Simple. CEO's and their exec's need to answer their own question regarding the potential profitability of a social media strategy. They need to better understand what the experience is like at least from an observation perspective and when they've done that, their question most likely won't be...

"When will this be profitable?" Rather, "how can we continue to effectively immerse our divisions in this new customer centric philosophy and continue to have more 'meaningful' customer conversations and engagements from which to learn from?"

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Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Bank of America fails at social media.

As a thunderstorm pounds away this morning, I have to admit that I've not been to my Flickr account in sometime. I mostly share pictures on Facebook these days and Flickr was really not about business for me. Sure there are a few shots of business stuff, like travel. That said, it certainly wasn't designed to be a component of any particular event, just a visual representation of activities in my life and that of my family.

I frankly haven't had the time to express my passion for amateur photography lately. You know, the kind of shots you take early on a weekend morning when the lighting is just right and you have no other place to be at that moment in time.

That said, I was looking at how brands are using Flickr. I came across some interesting groups, one that struck me as orphaned was the Bank of America photostream. When you dig deeper you see that they've started a promotion to coincide with the Beijing Olympics called It's clear this is about getting people to sign-up for a high-interest Visa to support the team.

Now at first glance, one could argue that this is maybe a decent idea to many mainstream corporate types. Unfortunately from my perspective this needs to be chalked up as a miss. A clear lack of commitment and understanding, even down to the Flickr profile thumbnail icon being blank.

Here's where I think they're going wrong.

  1. Clear lack of commitment overall - Their photostream is left for weeks at a time...the Olympics are just around the corner are they not? More activity, engagement and discussion is needed as part of a larger strategy online. This still feels like a big bank going "here you go little minions, have fun..." at least to me.
  2. Who are the Bank of America customers brand evangelists online and are they involved in the campaign? It doesn't appear so to me.
  3. Sure people are cheering for the U.S. team, but does anybody really "love" the Bank of America?
This is more about B-o-A pushing as a faceless corporation. The real human aspect of this frankly is the profile of the group's contact. Photo's of a happy family, NOT a faceless corporation allowed me to feel positive about something related to this discussion and it had little to do with the bank...that's the richness that the campaign is lacking in my opinion.

I believe Bank of America could have went further with a more complete overall strategy...that said it's probably a good thing they didn't since this small effort is dismal at best. Oh well, another case study to use and teach others with...

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Is Guy Kawasaki/Alltop about "meaning" or "money?"

Back in February, Jeremiah Owyang updated (he called it an analysis, and as you'll read in his post, even Forrester Research analysts make mistakes like the rest of us) he had previously written about Guy Kawasaki's new (in his words - "gimmick" site) The overall reviews from Owyang's twitter followers (follow me here) of Guy's site were mixed at best. was criticized for being a non-innovative "clone" of existing sites like popurls, Many did compliment Guy (including Owyang) on his ability to market the site (the Influence model). Citing for example his leveraging of existing "A-listers" in his ego topic section for example to garner attention for Alltop. Further, that "Techcrunch took the bait." Many concluded the attention was really more for Guy, than Alltop.

However, some time has passed now and we all recognize Guy's motivation here is to like most other sites make money. I know that many of you have seen Guy talk ( in person or on video) about his preference for sites or businesses that are about "making meaning "as their core purpose as being the ones that win over those who just want to grow and be acquired from the outset.

So my question to the readers of this post is. If you could only pick one answer: Do you think is about "making meaning" or "making money?"

A second question may be: Has Guy won you over with Alltop yet? It seems that if you search those who have made one of his various lists, that seems to be a proud moment for most... How about you "B-listers" out there...does making an Alltop topic list make a difference? Enquiring minds at fusedlogic want to know...

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Distributed Social Networking

Here's a great article explaining something I personally believe cannot happen fast enough "distributed social networking"...being able to take your profile, contacts and information with you from one social network to another, something that really works for me...

Friendfeed is an aggregator, so is of these types of consolidation technologies will become more prevalent...there are people watching these sites and services closely and designing better ways to get the job done. Specifically, listening to the audiences and learning about the good and the bad of each service, there's a lot of these statements being made today on twitter, plurk, identi, friendfeed and elsewhere...usually that means that you and I win because competition breeds innovation.

The next three years will see this trend towards aggregation, mobility and being able to see entire personal social network connections at a glance continue to advance...I suspect that today's leaders in this space will be the hot acquisition targets with strong communities in the near future having finally worked out all the kinks...

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Human nature at work on Twitter and Plurk

So as you can see to the right of this post I've added something called the "Plurk Timeline," this is in addition to my twitter account and account, I'm fusedlogic there too.

Anyway, this is part of my research on micro-blogging and how people use it. For example, Guy Kawasaki, provides regular updates regarding his site, the new topics he's added and requests for feeds to add from the twitter community. Such as his most recent question.

"I want to build the equivalent of for Friend
Feed. Does anyone have a good starting list?"

Others such as lead strategist Jeremiah Owyang, Forrester Research uses Twitter to keep people thinking about the social web in general. He directs people to new "lists" on his blog, new trends he sees happening, events he's attending and articles where he's quoted, typically in the San Francisco Gate...

Many others use twitter as a way to engage in conversations related to their business interests, some still just let us all know about their favorite foods and the activities they're doing at that very moment in time...

Out of all of these various content entries, I most enjoy those that drive the conversation to innovate. Guy Kawasaki is looking for a list for his new topic on because of a suggestion made on twitter by Christine Lu, someone who has collaborated with Guy on

Frankly, the twitter community in many ways is building, as Guy listens engages and asks questions...the "twitter crowd" is responding through ideas, traffic and objections from time to Guy doesn't take every piece of advice or suggestion, that's not feasible and he's stated in an interview with Christine Lu that all he's looking to do is make $750K a year from and keep things simple...

That's obviously a great plan and there's no doubt that he'll easily achieve that.

In future posts I'll talk about how the "twitterati," or in other words (in many cases, not all but many...) the "unapproachable snobby elite," think very highly of themselves.

You can always tell who they are because when on twitter if you direct a comment or question to them they selectively decide whether you as a little twitter nobody deserve a direct response... This is an interesting experiment in watching human nature...sure we're all busy but some of us respect human beings and others....not so much.

As my Canadian social media strategy company fusedlogic continues its modest growth globally...I will always continue to approach business like
"The Great One, Wayne Gretzky" treats others, fans, players etc... No matter how successful you always needs to respect other human beings regardless of their status in life.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Enhanced Aboriginal Education

Here's a PR from one of long standing my clients today...


CONTACT: Randy Morse, CEO (250) 353-2011 (office); (503) 545-8930 (mobile)


Siksika First Nation, Siksika, Alberta, July 7, 2008 –

The Indigenous Learning Company (ILC) announced today that it is committing to assist British Columbia school districts, First Nations, and other Aboriginal groups in bridging the learning gap, promoting cultural and linguistic pride among Aboriginal students, and ensuring that B.C.’s non-Aboriginal students gain a positive new understanding of the histories, cultures and contributions of B.C.’s Aboriginal peoples.

To-date over 40 B.C. school districts have joined with B.C. First Nations and other Aboriginal groups, and the Ministry of Education in signing Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreements, designed to help the province’s Aboriginal students succeed academically, taking into account the importance of traditional languages and cultures in ensuring student success in the classroom. The Agreements also call for programs and materials that will assist B.C.’s non-Aboriginal students in better appreciating the cultures and contributions of the province’s Aboriginal peoples.

ILC is Canada’s first, and perhaps only, Aboriginally owned and operated, fully professional web-based educational publishing company. ILC intends to draw upon its extensive experience in working with indigenous communities and educators elsewhere in Canada and around the world to bear on the educational challenges facing all British Columbians. The company intends to work closely with B.C. First Nations and other Aboriginal organizations, school districts, and the Ministry to build unique Aboriginally-focused, web-based educational learning materials that fully support the educational and cultural goals of existing and future Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreements.

“B.C. can and should be a world leader in developing educationally rigorous, culturally appropriate, 21st century learning solutions for its K-12 students – all its students, Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal alike. The world will be increasingly focusing its attention on our province as 2010 approaches,” said ILC CEO Randy Morse. “We want to work with our Aboriginal and educational partners to showcase the advancements called for in the Education Enhancement Agreements by the start of the 2010 Winter Games, to the ultimate benefit of all British Columbians,” Morse concluded.

About ILC

The Indigenous Learning Company is a Canadian corporation, with offices on the Siksika First Nation, Alberta, in Kaslo, British Columbia, and in Airway Heights, on Kalispel Tribe of Indians land in Washington State. ILC’s purpose is to deliver leading edge, culturally appropriate, curriculum-specific, web-based K-12 learning materials to Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal students & teachers in B.C., across Canada, and around the world.


Friday, July 04, 2008

When big brands miss, they miss big...

More and more large brands are taking on the social net and more and more brands are missing their targets...and some are winning and exceeding expectations, (low or cautious expectations I suspect).

When a large brand spends cash in the online world it's typically enough to buy a small country with a two-bit dictator. So missing the point in this arena hurts. Central to the problem is strategy or lack thereof and approach.

Complex organization + Old Marketing Attitude + New Social Media = Complex Expensive Failure

Understanding the social animals and online society or "creative class," "digital generation," "generation now" can be daunting. So seek first to listen, learn and participate by adding value...not ad dollars...

Using analytics to target demographics and audiences is fine to a point, but typically it doesn't tell the whole story. I think it's important to analyze online behaviors, living breathing trends, attitudes, needs...and combine that with understanding who's influencing the discussion. Having the proper strategy is absolutely key.

Just ask GM about whether they like Youtube or not...I talk about this in my presentations all the's the core to everything else...

Does your brand actually matter?

So...does anyone actually care about your brand? What is the relevance of your brand? Could your brand change the world? If so, are you?

Is your brand growing in terms of reach? Sure you're spending all this time and money, how are you measuring your reach and success. Do you have a methodology for measuring this success? If so how accurate is it? How does your brand currently affect the hiring of top talent? In this age of the "creative class," is your brand communicating in the right language?

This is a common story today...these questions although common also are often overlooked...

That said, I mostly just wanted to ask brand questions today...

Why not hold a "listening lab" and go find out what your customers think of your brand...