What a Wonk

Following on from the post about URLs out, searches in.

According to Ad Week: W+K in NY have hired a search dude (By the way I’m not suggesting a causal relation between my blog post and the hiring before anyone thinks I’m being a total knob).

Search is something so deeply ingrained in most peoples’ online experiences that there has to be more interesting and creative ways to use it – over and above what we’ve seen so far. It’ll be interesting to see what happens when you put great search people and creative agencies together. It’s something I’ve always wanted to have a go at…

Back to the article… The closing line has to be one of the best I’ve ever seen:

“He knows the nuts and bolts,” said Gleeson. “You can get him in a room of search wonks and he can more than represent. Beyond that, he’s a good strategist and creative thinker.”

I’d never heard the term wonk before. And I don’t know what it means to ‘more than represent’, but it sounds pretty damn good. So I looked up wonk and found it:

wonk (wongk) noun
An expert who studies a subject or issue thoroughly and excessively.

When I grow up I wanna be a wonk!

Adobe Downloads Cost More Than Boxes – WTF?

I feel bad posting bad stuff about Adobe being as they’ve just launched 2 really cool things:

Buzzword.com is an amazing online word processor (the export functions are dead tight and you could almost survive without MS Word), and Photoshop Express (the free online Photoshop version) is pretty cool as well.

So those are good things. Here’s the bad thing…

I was looking to upgrade Photoshop Elements (on my MacBook I don’t need anything more powerful). When I got to the checkout of the UK online store I selected the ‘download’ option rather than the ‘ship me a box’ option AND THE PRICE WENT UP!

Getting the box sent costs £45…

Downloading it costs £47…

Why on earth would that ever make sense to anyone? It doesn’t make sense to a consumer. It doesn’t make sense to a business surely? And it certainly doesn’t make sense to the planet.

Unless the fundamental laws of atom shifting have changed while I wasn’t looking.

My Balearic Muxtape

Everyone seems to be Muxtaping today.

They’re calling it the easy way to create and share mixtapes. And it is. You just upload your tracks and it puts them together in a nice webpage where people can just click to listen.

They’ve got a blog here: http://muxtape.tumblr.com/.

37 Signals bigged it up so it’s being hammered at the moment (uploading is disabled for the moment as I write this). There’s also obvious issues regarding rights. They do say you should used cleared tracks – but if you look at any of the muxtapes on there most of them aren’t. Including mine (sorry).

My afternoon’s balearic listening can be heard right here: http://baleariciain.muxtape.com/

One of those brilliantly simple sites that does one thing very well.

URLs Out – Searches In

I was watching TV last night and an ad came on for continuing education. It’s one with fingers walking around the place. The ad was OK. I didn’t really pay much attention. But at the end of the ad the call to action was – “search for EMA online”. Not visit direct.gov.uk/ema or what you’d normally get, but just search for EMA online.

So I tried it. And it worked.

On Google both top natural search listing and the sponsored link would have taken me to the right place. On Live search and Yahoo.com the right link was the sponsored top link as well as being number 2 in natural search (not perfect, but good enough).

Then a couple of minutes later I stumbled on this article (via: BoingBoing) about how in Japanese advertising the use of search terms in posters is really kicking off. I quite like how they’re integrating a search box with a suggested search term into their ads.

search_jp2
search_jp

Visit http://www.cabel.name to read the whole thing and see more pictures.

It does seem like a potentially smart way to go now that most of the short and memorable domain names with any meaning have been scooped up. But making sure you’ve got the right people looking after your search engine optimisiation / marketing stuff is EVEN more important than it was yesterday.

Make Mine a Builders – Superb Blogger Relations

Make Mine A Builders (Tea)

In the post the other day I got a package of brilliant stuff. You can see it above.

It contained a pack of “Make Mine a Builders” tea and a stylish silver mug with one of those climbing clippy things (I can never remember their proper name) as a handle.

Make Mine A Builders (Tea)

Why did I get this? Well because I’d said I liked their tea once before on the blog.

It came with a hand-written comp slip that was written just to me. They’d spelled my name right and everything.

But the thing that made it super-special is that it was a total surprise. They’d gone out and done all the legwork themselves. They hadn’t emailed me to ask what my postal address was. They’d gone and figured it all out on their own.

So when it arrived it was a genuine moment of surprise and delight. (In case you’re not a jaded industry hack ‘surprise and delight’ is pretty much the thing that everyone talks about doing to make their customers like them better).

Cynically you might say that they’re just trying to get some more publicity. And maybe they are. But you know what, I don’t care. I’ve got a shiny mug and some splendid tea (it is really good by the way).

Things to learn from this: nice, charming, personal, relevant, free stuff, shiny things, no effort from me.

Oh My Good Lord

Sophie’s brother introduced me to the work of Larry Carlson yesterday. Half of me wishes he hadn’t.

It’s like a portal into a strange dimension that makes you feel kind of odd. But you can’t help sticking around to see what happens next.

The flash animations on his site are absolutely amazing.

oddness

Not sure how safe they are if you’ve got a susceptibility to flashing things – pretty dangerous I’d imagine.

Oh and he’s got other sites too like Medijate which are just as odd/amazing.

He’s obviously been around a while and well covered in some places. But I just had to share it.

Is It Broken?

Brilliantly simple.

We’ve all had those moments when a site’s not working. And you wonder, is it down for everyone or just me? http://downforeveryoneorjustme.com/
answers the question for you.

You enter a URL and it tells you.

Smashing.

I did do a double take on the Google ad served up in the bottom right of the results page though! Yowza!

A Dream Come True (and it’s Only Monday)

Safe falling out of a window

I’ve always wanted to see a safe fall out of a window (like in the cartoons).

This morning as I was walking down Commercial Street I saw a safe lying on the pavement!

A Safe On The Street

I don’t think it can have fallen out of a window. And the pallet sitting next to it would suggest that the safe fell off that somehow. But still in my heart I’m hoping that it fell from here:

Above the Safe

Seeing something this good on the way to work on a Monday must be a good omen for the week.