Monthly Archives: March 2011

You Must Remove the Head…


One of my favorite business phrases comes from David Gammel, it deals with the concept that ideas live and breathe as soon as we start working on them and putting resources into them. But that they also die and unfortunately some turn into Sacred Zombie Cows!

I think its the visual as much as anything that attracts me to the phrase, regardless, the idea that projects can become half-ton, four legged,  resource sucking zombies is an important one to think about. They key ofcourse to the concept of the sacred zombie cow is the sacred part. Its not just that the project/idea is dead, that happens all the time. We start something, it fails, we move on. But then there are those few ideas that just don’t go away after they have died, instead we keep feeding them, keeping them warm, even talking to them oblivious to the fact that they are zombies.

Recently I was reminded of the zombie cow while listening to NPR discuss yet more issues that are being had with the musical, Spiderman. Now, I’m not one to keep up on entertainment news so I actually thought this musical had come run its course and already left again. As it turns out, the thing hasn’t even started and doesn’t plan to do so for weeks or months longer. Listening to the  commentary on the many plights of this musical no phrase rang more true than, “Kill the sacred zombie cow.”

A quick search reveals pages and pages articles written about the failure of this show prior to its even opening. From injuries, to bad reviews, to a new plan that involves significant changes to the cast and script, it is obvious to almost everyone that this project has been killed, many times over. The fact that this dead project continues to drain resources from its supporters, who refuse to acknowledge its death, is what makes it a perfect example of a zombie cow.

As is the case with all zombies, Sacred Zombie Cows, do eventually perish as well. The worse case scenario is when a zombie cow is so sacred that no one ever shoots it in the head and it eventually eats the brains of every person in its path. An example of this would be fossil fuel consumption. Thankfully most zombies aren’t nearly that sacred and at some point it becomes clear to all that they are dead and the proper actions are taken.

The struggle is to identify zombie cows before they have the chance to take anyone else or any other living ideas/projects with them. While this may seem simple it can be considerably more difficult than you would think.

So, Have you killed your sacred zombie cow today?


Marketing Tips to Remember


Its ALL About Connecting

A while back Kreeer published a blog about titled “Everything You Do Should Be Tweetable!” In addition to some great information about revising the way your approach your daily tasks/work to be more accommodating to the world of social networking, the blog focuses on the single principle that all social interactions on the web are really about one thing: creating meaningful connections.

Hanging On To The Long Tail

If you’re a business person then you probably are very familiar with the concept of the long tail. If however you’re like me, then this might be a new idea but one that is very much worth checking out. In short, the idea demonstrates that there is a greater chance of conversion success by going after the HUGE number of people that are searching for less popular terms then there is by fighting tooth and nail to get a top rank on a really popular search term.

Consistency is Key

For many people that live mostly IRL (in real life) it can be difficult and even at times a pain to get online and interact with twitter, feeds, blogs and other marketing tools.  While not every person has to be on the internet every day to be effective you do need to come up with a schedule. Think of it almost like book-keeping. If you prefer to write multiple blogs on one day and publish throughout the week that’s fine. This technique doesn’t work as well for other mediums (such as twitter that require more interaction). Whatever you chose as your schedule stick to it! Nothing will drive readers and followers away faster than if you disappear for weeks at a time or bombard them with info for three days straight.

Your Voice Matters

While much of the advice you receive for social marketing revolves around publishing its important to remember that what you write/say matters too. People want to connect with other people, sure they want information and whatnot but they go to blogs for experiences, accounts and anecdotes… not just information. This is why some bloggers are wildly popular and others seem to constantly struggle to maintain readers. When a blogger sounds too much like an authority they cease to be relatable and fun, at the same time the musings of a novice are only really interesting to friends and family.