Viral Schwag and the Kodak Zi6

I got a lovely note suggesting that I might enjoy this product. And that I could indulge my love of floating heads…

Also in the package was a Kodak Zi6 HD video camera. It’s a small, lightweight cheap thing that can make videos and take photos. It’s incredibly simple to use. Takes AA batteries and standard SD cards and has a built in flip-out USB connector.

It’s by far the simplest way of getting bits of video into a computer I’ve ever come across (short of using an inbuilt webcam). And because it doesn’t look like a video camera people don’t start playing up to it (or geting shy and nervy) in the normal way. And the quality is totally decent enough for online use. Especially in good-ish light.

I’ll post some samples in a minute so you can see the video quality. But I really wanted to talk about the blogger outreach part of it.

The package was sent to me by a lovely guy called Mike Laurie (we used to work together years and years ago at Oven Digital) – he’s a regular commenter on Crackunit and he sends me great links all the time. You should have a look at his blog especially his monster post on viral(s) which I like a lot (he doesn’t seem to have updated in a while though, come on Mike keep it up. Your blog is ace!)

Importantly I wasn’t the only person at Poke who got one – Nicky who writes the fabbo Monster Munch blog. And the legendary Cookie, who’s still on the road, got one too (for when he gets back).

I just thought that there might be an interesting approach wrapped up in this. If you’re doing blogger outreach why not make a few key bloggers your distributors of the blog schwag? Rather than trying to identify 50 people to send something to why not pick 5 people and give them 10 things each to distribute to 10 people that they know / like / respect. Cuts down your work and makes sure that the approach / messaging is relevant to the recipient. I guess it’s like viral schwag.

Just a thought like.

I don’t think that’s what happened here though, Mike works for a company called JPMH who appear to be running this ‘outreach’ activity.

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.