Updates from February, 2007 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Andrew Kordek 10:05 am on February 26, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    Blinkx.com 

    I recently read and article from the New York Times about the site blinkx.com which I guess is a way to search for a ton of videos out there and for it to return all of the instances posted on that particular subject. I did a search for quest.com knowing that there are about 26 or more videos, all tagged on youtube correctly. When I did the search, I ended up with 7 matches, which in my opinion is unacceptable. I know that google returned more searches and even youtubes search engine returned all of the searches.

    Looks like blinkx.com has a ways to go before they make it to my bookmark folder.

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  • Andrew Kordek 10:53 am on February 23, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    Eloqua. Education and thought leadership. 

    Last year we evaluated Eloqua. I really like their application as it really does a ton when it comes to relationship marketing as well as being able to utilize it as a marketing DB to track all sorts of neat things. I recently read a white paper titled “The 10 biggest mistakes that marketers make”from them that I found quite interesting. However, one of the things that rubs me the wrong way is that within an hour or so of downloading the white-paper (which by the way is over 40 pages) I get an email asking about re-engaging with them. Granted, I believe that we have a need, but wouldn’t you think I would contact them if I wanted to re-engage with them? Does downloading a white paper automatically signal to people that I am ready to look at their solutions again?

    I appreciate follow-up from time to time from companies that I deal with, but sometimes you have to let us breathe when we decide to grab a nugget. I think alot of companies suffer from the “if you get something from us, that automatically means you are interested in something” I am a firm believer in education and I often preach to those folks within our own marketing organization, that it sometimes is not all about lead generation and revenue. If you are a true leader in the industry, I believe that there is a certain amount of education that needs to happen to your customers or potential customers to prove to them that you truly care about their needs and wants. If you don’t provide fresh educational content from time to time, you run the risk of being portrayed in the market place as a company who is nothing more than going after the next sale.

    I guess my point in all of this is that sometimes before I come to your party, I want to get to know you better. I want to know what you have to offer other than just a great party (or product in this case) Yes, I can come to your party (if I dont know you well and learn more) but in this case I need to spend money for a cover charge.

    Anyway..its Friday….so have a great weekend.

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    • Garrett Mann 5:01 pm on March 6, 2007 Permalink | Reply

      I totally agree with your point here. There has been a paradigm shift in the balance of power in technology purchasing. Online outlets have equipped buyers with the opportunity to gather and consume a vast amount of information regarding a vendor and vendor’s product without needing to engage that vendor explicitly. These opportunities have subsequently empowered the buyer to exert a choice and preference to when they engage vendors.

      In order to have success in a changing online environment, vendors must recognize and embrace this “don’t call us, we’ll call you” reality. That means making sure that buyers remain engaged after initial contact by giving them the proper incentive – an appropriate follow-up based on interest demonstrated (which to point in your post regarding Eloqua, would have been a useful, educational offer). Being assumptive here runs this risk of losing a downstream customer.

      I just discovered this blog after you had linked to our blog. There is alot of great stuff here. Keep up the great work!

    • thescrappysoftwaremarketer 3:27 pm on March 7, 2007 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for the comment Garrett….I appreciate your feedback.

  • Andrew Kordek 10:19 am on February 22, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    Blogger Outreach Program 

    I was chatting with someone recently who mentioned that they have a blogger outreach program in their organization. I am curious to know if their are companies out there currently who have a full-time person dedicated to blogger outreach and if so describe in detail what exactly they do. (offer incentives, free product for the blogger to try with the hopes of them posting something) Also does this person do anything else in the org, or is it that blogs have become so popular and it really can prove fruitful for your organization.

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  • Andrew Kordek 9:26 am on February 21, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    How to Make Your Technology Brand Famous Via Podcasts, Blogs & Games: 12-Month Viral Marketing Plan 

    I ran across a great article from marketingsherpa.com in their case study section that really sums up what I would like to focus my efforts on at Quest over the next 12-18 months.

    You can find it here:  http://www.marketingsherpa.com/article.html?ident=29871

    I think there is about a week or so left for open access.

     
  • Andrew Kordek 1:57 pm on February 20, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    What happens when I Google you? 

    Found an interesting post on Seth Godin’s blog about a person who did a search on a product and it came up with an error.  One of the things that amaze me is the fact that some pages of software products that I see, have spelling errors, broken links and just general internet no-no’s……

    Have you checked your site lately?

    Seth’s post:  http://sethgodin.typepad.com/seths_blog/2007/02/what_happens_wh.html

     
  • Andrew Kordek 10:43 am on February 15, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    Promoting an internal blog 

    I traveled yesterday to our Columbus office for a series of meetings and other things. I will be here till Friday and really like coming here. People are friendly and they all know me which is great. However, I do have to question the ability for the Columbus folks to remove snow and not go into a snow panic. The have this level 1,2,3 emergency system and it seems that the news was all consumed about this snowstorm they got and managed to shut down the entire city, including our office yesterday. When I arrived there were only 2 brave souls in the office and it seemed like a ghost town. Anyway, I digress….

    In between the series of meetings and such, I have made it my personal mission to promote our own internal blog to the marketing folks here in the office. I have resorted to putting things in their mailboxes and little cutouts on their keyboards while they were out of the their offices and cubicles. Let see if it works because my entire team has worked on the internal blog alot and I really want it to gain some traction. The adaptation of our marketing group to blogging has been less than stellar, but I am here to turn it around. Lets see if my ancient 80′s style guerrilla marketing technique works.

    As always…let me know what you think.

     
  • Andrew Kordek 4:02 pm on February 14, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    Insight24.com 

    Recently we were approached by insight24.com to post our webcasts, podcasts, and videos on their site for free. The site is like a YouTube for the techical/software audience. The site doesn’t look complete, so I was skeptical at first. In general, there are hundreds of sites out there that serve the same need; I tend to look at sites that have graphics or have a professional feel. If you click around a little, you see several large companies with information listed. I am curious to know if they the company posted the video or if insight24 went to the company’s site and downloaded it.

    Does the design of a site determine if you continue to use it?

    Do you see the value in a site like insight24?

     
    • js 6:09 pm on February 28, 2007 Permalink | Reply

      Looks pretty professional to me http://www.insight24.com

    • thescrappysoftwaremarketer 3:39 pm on March 1, 2007 Permalink | Reply

      Thanks for the comment, but you might want to mask your IP address next time…especially if you want to do an anonymous post

      In addition I also encourage you to read this about having ethical contact with bloggers: http://www.womma.org/blogger/read/

    • Tom 8:57 pm on March 14, 2007 Permalink | Reply

      We have recently upgraded the Insight24 website to include more graphics and thumbnails, per your and others’ feedback. We have also added “mousover” abstracts, which allow viewers to obtain an overview of the content prior to viewing it. We believe these changes have greatly improved the interface and usability of the site.

      With respect to content, the webcasts, podcasts, videos, and demos on Insight24 have been approved for publishing by their content owners. All of the content on Insight24 is rich media.

  • Andrew Kordek 8:56 am on February 13, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    Shame on you Volvo…. 

    My wife and I have watch alot of HGTV lately. Perhaps its because we are addicted to home improvement or real estate, but one thing we have noticed lately is that they keep replaying the same Volvo commercial for the new S80. I don’t know if you have seen this particular one, but it involves a couple driving their new S80 at 1:52 in the morning, speeding thru city streets in order to get to what appears is their favorite restaurant/cafe in time before it closes. It shows them flying around construction points and coming very close to what appears to be a newspaper truck when suddenly the sensors in there new S80 indicate both verbally and visually that there is an object close to them and they must swerve to get out of the way. They dramatically make it to there cafe in time, stop the car suddenly and then dash out to get into it on time.

    Call me old fashioned, call me an idiot, but this type of commercial really changes the way I think about Volvos. While I am sure that they are great cars and handle very well, I think they are sending the wrong message about their vehicle. Yes, they have the standard “Professional driver on closed course” pasted in arial 4 point font at the bottom, but no where do they really say, “please don’t drive like this, fictitious situation only” or something like that. To me, they give the perception that even on a closed course, its ok to drive like an idiot to make it to your restaurant on time. Granted, they have that nifty software that powers that sensor, but is it really necessary to portray this image of the vehicles performance. I have long thought that Volvo’s premise/mantra was safety and performance and by the looks of this commercial it appears that they no longer want to portray that.

    Either fire your ad agency or change the way you think about your cars.

    Shame on you Volvo….I am disappointed.

    Here is a link to YouTube for the video…I wont embed the video itself simply because of my opinion on this. See for yourself and let me know what you think.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f2Ki0dE9IP0

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  • Andrew Kordek 12:27 pm on February 12, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    8 Ways The Internet Changed Software Marketing 

    I just started to read John Millers blog about modern B2B marketing and ran across a great post about 8 ways the Internet has changed software marketing. Its a great read.

    http://blog.marketo.com/blog/2007/02/8_ways_the_inte.html

     
  • Andrew Kordek 11:13 am on February 9, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    oddcast day 1 and 2 

    As I posted yesterday, I am evaluating oddcast/sitepal.  In day 1 of my testing, the UI is pretty user friendly to create characters and such. I can add in custom backgrounds and add any sort of voice/audio I want.  The only thing I dont see that I can do, and I will be contacting support on this is that I need to create a custom character based off an image I have stored on my computer. It seems as if I can morph their standard characters to wear anything or age them etc..but I need to create a totally new character look.  Also, during the audio portion, I do note some lag on the actual audio vs. the lips moving of the character.

    Overall, I like the software, but I would need to have the ability to create my own custom character if I were to consider purchasing it.

     
    • Vanessa 3:50 pm on February 15, 2007 Permalink | Reply

      Hi Andrew –I’m Vanessa from SitePal. I just randomly came across your blog and wanted to let you know that we do offer a custom character that can be created based on your own digital picture or image. For more info about custom models, you can visit us at: http://www.sitepal.com/custommodels

      Thanks for trying SitePal!

    • Randy Poole 12:53 pm on May 2, 2007 Permalink | Reply

      If you want to use this type of technology , we just launched NOAH, the next generation of web-based talking animated character technology. NOAH will allow the web site or E-Learning application to present a much higher engagement and interactivity opportunity to the user as compared to the other web based solutions. Our system also does not need constant connectivity to the internet so it is very useful in CD based and E-Learning projects. You can see NOAH in action at http://noahx.com.

      Any feedback on our system would be greatly appreciated.

  • Andrew Kordek 11:13 am on February 8, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    oddcast.com 

    I am starting an eval today using oddcast.com characters with the hopes that we would incorporate the customized character into various parts of our internet marketing campaigns.  Curious to know if people out there have had any dealings with them on the technical side or who use this service currently.

     
  • Andrew Kordek 9:52 am on February 7, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    Web 2.0 … The Machine is Us/ing Us 

    This video was passed to me earlier today and thought I would feature it. This is truly a killer vid.

     
  • Andrew Kordek 12:56 pm on February 6, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    Whats the worst piece of email marketing you have ever received? 

    I was in receipt today of an email piece that was really boarder-line horrible.  It had spelling mistakes, wrong dates, a weird call to action.  It was from a legitimate company, with great products, so at first I thought it was a joke, but it was no joke.  When I clicked on the link to do the call to action, the landing page was fine and everything was smooth.

    However, the body of the piece looked like it was done or written by a group of caged monkeys on speed.  Anyway curious to know of any email horror stories.

     
  • Andrew Kordek 12:09 pm on February 5, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    Is your email marketing a “10″ 

    I just read a post on the marketingsherpa.com blog by Anne Holland about companies ranking their own email marketing.  There was not one company that ranked themselves a 10,9 or even 8.  In fact, Anne rated marketingsherpa’s efforts a 3.5.  The posting is a great posting for all of us who engage in email marketing and it outlines some of the common barriers or hurdles that we as professional marketers have when it comes to email marketing.  Quest does engage in quite a bit of email marketing and I would rank us a 3 out of 10.  We like some of these other companies face similar challenges with IT, deliverability, integration with our CRM and web analytics.  However, I and a handful of others are the only ones that see the issues.  To some, things are just great due to the results that my team produces.  Again, email marketing is judged not by the metrics or analysis or integration with certain systems yet we are judged by the end results (white paper registrations, event registrations etc..)

    My mission in 2007 is to educate, educate and educate along with the constant push to increase and make our efforts better.  Curious as to how you would rank your email marketing efforts.  Drop me a line and let me know.

     
    • Tamara Gielen 12:55 pm on February 5, 2007 Permalink | Reply

      I’d rate my company a 3 as well. I put up a poll on my blog to see how others rate their programs. You’re welcome to vote!

  • Andrew Kordek 9:33 am on February 2, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    The Buzz Challenge. 

    I just began to read Ron McDaniels blog and noticed that Matt Heinz has taken up his buzz challenge

    Go for it Matt, I wish you all the luck.  In thinking about it, I may take up his challenge as well, although I would love to read the book and get pumped up to do it.  I would also need to find a way to incorporte most of the challenge to software since thats what I do.  :-)  Right now, the buzznoodle buzzmarketing book is third on my list to read….so I should get to it sometime in 2008….kidding.

    I am always up for a challenge and love the friendly internal competition my psychy produces.

    As a final note for today, I would be remiss if I did not mention that there is a certain Chicago team with a certain type of mentality playing in a certain type of game this weekend……DA Bears……

    Go Bears.

     
  • Andrew Kordek 12:03 pm on February 1, 2007 Permalink | Reply  

    Shycast…..thoughts? 

    My director came to me today asking me the opinion of shycast.  I am wondering if anyone of you have ever had any dealings or heard of them.  We run some internal contests at Quest and judging by what they do “Shycast is a community of people and brands, working together to make great new things happen in the world of social marketing.” – lifted from their site, I am wondering how good this would be either for software or just running something internally.

    The site looks pretty cool and am excited to learn more about them as I think they have a pretty good thing going there in the way of a concept.  Let me know if you have an opinion either way on the concept or site.

     
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