Six Pixels of Separation - The Blog
February 1, 2015 9:51 AM

What Does True Brand Evangelism Look Like?

Episode #447 of Six Pixels of Separation - The Mirum Podcast is now live and ready for you to listen to.

Saul Colt fancies himself as one of the leading word of mouth marketing professionals in the world. At the core of his work, is helping brands find, develop and nurture real brand evangelists. This isn't about making people smile, so that they talk about you on Facebook, it's about finding the right customer for a brand and ensuring that their experience lasts as long as possible. While Saul's work can sometimes be simplistically defined as a stunt, Saul looks at it from a different perspective. From Freshbooks to Zipcar... to his current role as Chief Evangelist at Xero, Saul is always thinking of ways to get consumers to care about the brands that they use. This is how he does it. Enjoy the conversation...  

You can grab the latest episode of Six Pixels of Separation here (or feel free to subscribe via iTunes): Six Pixels of Separation - The Mirum Podcast #447.

By Mitch Joel

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January 31, 2015 9:43 AM

Six Links Worthy Of Your Attention #241

Is there one link, story, picture or thought that you saw online this week that you think somebody you know must see?

My friends: Alistair Croll (BitCurrent, Year One Labs, GigaOM, Human 2.0, Solve For Interesting, the author of Complete Web Monitoring, Managing Bandwidth: Deploying QOS in Enterprise Networks and Lean Analytics), Hugh McGuire (PressBooks, LibriVox, iambik and co-author of Book: A Futurist's Manifesto) and I decided that every week the three of us are going to share one link for one another (for a total of six links) that each individual feels the other person "must see".

Check out these six links that we're recommending to one another:

  • Rabbit And Deer. "This is an amazing, flawlessly executed, and extremely moving animation by Péter Vácz. It's a love story, and an exploration of other dimensions." (Alistair for Hugh).
  • The AI Revolution: The Road to Superintelligence - Wait But Why. "Road to Superintelligence: A clever, clear, approachable explanation of why the future is sentient machines. This is a perfect explainer, which doesn't skip things, but also doesn't condescend and doesn't resort to jargon. Invest twenty minutes in reading it and you'll think about tomorrow differently." (Alistair for Mitch).
  • One Week of Harassment on Twitter - Feminist Frequency. "There has been a lot of talk of rape culture in the last couple of years in particular, with a host of horrible examples to choose from. There are some who seem to deny that this is a problem, but when you see, for example, the interactions with the @femfreq Twitter account, I hope it makes you pause. I wonder, do (heterosexual, white) men ever get this level of sustained, violent hatred directed at them from random strangers? I read one article about a woman who started investigating who was sending these kinds of messages; she soon found that many of them were teen boys. She contacted their mothers. Love that. But... what is going on with how we raise teen boys?" (Hugh for Alistair).   
  • Oof. Heavy. But Brave Response. [Adult] - Elephant Journal. "It amazes me that we can't seem to enact laws that say: 'It is unlawful to publish naked pictures of someone without the express written consent of the subject of those pictures. Anyone who does so, and any website which hosts such pictures, will be subject to [X punishment].'  A Danish women had such photos stolen, and posted all over the place - along with her name, the name of her parents, employers. And, years later, she still gets harassing emails. Here's what she did about it." (Hugh for Mitch).
  • Why Apps for Messaging Are Trending - The New York Times. "It's something to think about. Everyone is still excited about social media, sharing and how technology allows connections. With that, the trend is moving back towards more one-to-one communications. Private stuff. Semi-private stuff. Maybe, in the end, we don't want to share that much publicly. Maybe, in the end, we just want a better way to share with the people who really matter to us, or the ones who share our similar interests. Facebook groups are the one thing that makes Facebook that much more interesting. A better way to message and share with people? Sign me up!" (Mitch for Alistair).
  • Half-Truths, Non-Truths, And Louis C.K. - The New Yorker. "It took me a while to get on the Louis C.K. bandwagon. Well, here I am. Been digging deep into the many hours of stand-up that Louis has done. With that, I have a side - personal - interest in the mechanics of stand-up comedy. I love documentaries about comedians (in fact, I think Jerry Seinfeld's documentary, Comedian, is one of my favorite movies). I feel a kinship to that art form, when I look at public speaking and writing content. That solitary slogging through the work, to then 'put it out there' and see if anyone cares... it's a different kind of grind. This is a great piece about someone who is truly making an impact in a very tough and finicky business." (Mitch for Hugh).

Feel free to share these links and add your picks on Twitter, Facebook, in the comments below or wherever you play.

By Mitch Joel

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January 30, 201510:00 AM

Twist Image Becomes Mirum

You read that right: Twist Image will now be known as Mirum! (And, yes, I'm really excited about this!)

So, what's going on? Last May, I announced that Twist Image had been acquired by WPP. A lot of people have been asking me about this experience and how it has been. So far, it has been great (and, I'm fully aware that we are still in the honeymoon phase). I explained the rationale in a blog post titled, Why Did I Sell Twist Image (And Other Questions)?. Since then, we have had a lot of interesting moments. We were able to win our first North American piece of business in Treasury Wine Estates and shortly after that, we announced Jon Finkelstein as our new Executive Creative Director. Over the past few months, we decided that it would be in our best interest to join a group within the WPP network that had similar goals, skills, culture and entrepreneurial spirit. Over the course of several months of meetings, we wound up meeting and connecting with other digital marketing agencies that had been acquired through JWT (now known - again - as J. Walter Thompson) who were extremely similar to us, but occupied different geographic regions. There were conversations about pulling all of these agencies together to unite and create a brand-new global digital marketing agency. It was a great opportunity for us to get in on the ground floor and build something new, so we decided to become a founding partner of this new global digital marketing agency.

Welcome to Mirum.

The word Mirum means "amazing" and "wonder" in Latin. So, what does this really mean? Mirum is now in 17 countries, with 40 offices in places like New York, San Diego, London, Paris, Mexico, South Africa, Australia, Saudi Arabia, Dubai, Brazil, Singapore, Thailand, Indonesia, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Sweden, Finland, India and - of course - Toronto and Montreal. We employ over 2000 amazing digital marketing professionals. The nine agencies that are rebranding, like Twist Image, to Mirum are: Digitaria (US), XM (Asia Pacific), Casa (Brazil) Activeark (Finland, Sweden and India), Lunchbox (Los Angeles), i-Cherry (Brazil), HeathWallace (London), and Quirk (South Africa). Clarus (Mexico) and X-Prime (France) will also join Mirum, but will not be changing their names. The process to get all of our brands aligned (including websites and social media spaces) from our current brands to Mirum will take place over the next few weeks, as we edge closer to launching the official website (and more).

How does this affect you and the Six Pixels of Separation community?

It doesn't. If anything, this blog, the Six Pixels podcast, the two business books (Six Pixels of Separation and CTRL ALT Delete), my contributions to places like Huffington Post, Harvard Business Review and Inc. Magazine have all put my thinking (and what Twist Image is all about) on a global stage (which I am forever thankful for). Speaking events brought me all over the world for the past decade. The challenge that we had - as a digital marketing agency - was convincing brands that we can work on the same global platform that our content delivered on. Now, it can. Now, it will. My role stays the same. It will be augmented with some kind of global position around digital strategy and thought leadership, which only makes me hungrier to create more compelling and interesting content for you. So, I hope you will come along for the ride! Ultimately, Mirum was created to ensure that we can serve our clients better, and ensure that they are leading the way in digital marketing.

Day One. Day One.

You can read the full press release here: Introducing Mirum: A Modern Global Company.

By Mitch Joel

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January 25, 2015 9:37 AM

Real Brand Storytelling

Episode #446 of Six Pixels of Separation - The Twist Image Podcast is now live and ready for you to listen to.

I have known Bryan Eisenberg forever. Back when I first started publishing music  magazines on the Internet (in the mid-nineties), there were few people writing about the power of the Internet from a business and marketing perspective. There were message boards and email lists... and that's where I first started reading the work of Bryan. Now, Bryan Eisenberg is the co-author (along with his brother, Jeffrey Eisenberg) of the bestselling books, Call to Action, Waiting For Your Cat to Bark? and Always Be Testing. We have also shared the stage on numerous occasions, because Bryan is a professional marketing keynote speaker as well. He's done much than that. He is also the co-founder of the Web Analytics Association (now the Digital Analytics Association), serves as an advisory board member of Search Engine Strategies, the eMetrics Marketing Optimization Summit and several venture capital backed startup companies (like Bazaarvoice, Monetate, Nomi, TagMan, and more). Most recently, he launched a new startup called, IdealSpot, and a fascinating new book called, Buyer Legends - The Executive Storyteller's Guide. Enjoy the conversation... 

You can grab the latest episode of Six Pixels of Separation here (or feel free to subscribe via iTunes): Six Pixels of Separation - The Twist Image Podcast #446.

By Mitch Joel

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January 24, 2015 9:10 AM

Six Links Worthy Of Your Attention #240

Is there one link, story, picture or thought that you saw online this week that you think somebody you know must see?

My friends: Alistair Croll (BitCurrent, Year One Labs, GigaOM, Human 2.0, Solve For Interesting, the author of Complete Web Monitoring, Managing Bandwidth: Deploying QOS in Enterprise Networks and Lean Analytics), Hugh McGuire (PressBooks, LibriVox, iambik and co-author of Book: A Futurist's Manifesto) and I decided that every week the three of us are going to share one link for one another (for a total of six links) that each individual feels the other person "must see".

Check out these six links that we're recommending to one another:

  • Death By Robot - The New York Times. "Asimov cooked up three laws of robotics that governed how robots would behave. Turns out they were pretty smart laws: don't kill humans, do what they say, that kind of thing. But nobody's suddenly building a fully-formed, anthropomorphic robot today. Instead we're surrounded by dozens of special-purpose robots, without much of Asimov's conscience. When robots are charged with everything from ending lives to saving them to extending them, it's high time for some ethics." (Alistair for Hugh).
  • Ai Weiwei is Living in Our Future - Medium"Over the holidays, someone joked that Santa Claus was the perfect model for government surveillance -- he knows when you're bad, after all -- and that the Elf on the Shelf was training us for growing up in the Panopticon. Here's what it means to live under permanent surveillance. And as this long, packed piece demonstrates, that future is about to happen to all of us." (Alistair for Mitch).
  • If every Norwegian's a millionaire, why's Alberta in hock? - Canadian Dimension. "Diffrent strokes for different folks, I guess. Norway seems to manage its oil wealth prudently. Canada, not so much." (Hugh for Alistair).
  • In Your Wildest Schemes - The Nib. "A great - what do we call this? 'Graphic essay'? 'Long-form comic' ? - piece on climate change, and the failure of our current political/social machinery to grapple with the problem in a sensible way. Medium really is becoming the medium for long-form stuff, isn't it?" (Hugh for Mitch).
  • Researchers create 'self-aware' Super Mario with artificial intelligence - Mashable. "In case you didn't know, Elon Musk believes that robots will become smarter than human beings... and that they will eventually kill us all. Not a joke. Not a plot from a science fiction movie. He just put ten million towards the Future of Life Institute, which is working to keep artificial intelligence safe. So, that's a headline that has been capturing a lot of media attention. Then, I see this article on Mashable. It turns out that the next version of Super Mario may not require you to play at all... instead, you will be able to watch Mario learn, grown and - potentially - become even smarter than you... maybe even kill you?" (Mitch for Alistair).
  • Facebook report says it adds more than $200 billion to global economy - Reuters. "On Monday, I will be in Toronto for Advertising Week. As a part of the event, I will be taking part in a live debate with Andrew Keen (moderated by Mathew Ingram) about the future of the Internet in our lives. I actually believe that Keen's voice needs to be heard. I have often wondered what will happen to us, in a world where companies like Facebook can grow to their current size and revenues with so few people, compared to the generations before us. That is a lot of wealth in very few hands, and not a lot of jobs for the rest of us. While this could be a very self-serving report, Facebook makes the case that they have contributed over $200 billion to the global economy and 4.5 million jobs. 'The report looks at the businesses that maintain pages on Facebook as well as the mobile apps and games that consumers play on Facebook and measures all the economic activity that result. It also considers the demand for gadgets and online connectivity services that are generated by Facebook.' So, should we stop looking at just how many people companies like this directly employ, and start trying to figure out how many people are making a living because of it?" (Mitch for Hugh).

Feel free to share these links and add your picks on Twitter, Facebook, in the comments below or wherever you play.

By Mitch Joel

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January 21, 2015 7:14 PM

Find Your Brand Expression

Marketing is a game of differentiation. Some might (fairly) argue that a brand's true "win" happens when they're so unique, that the marketing is baked right into the product and service. It's a high bar to set for most, especially... Read more

By Mitch Joel

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January 19, 2015 9:14 AM

Google Glass Isn't Dead... And Other Digital News To Know This Week

Every Monday morning at 7:10 am, I am a guest contributor on CHOM 97.7 FM radio broadcasting out of Montreal (home base). It's not a long segment - about 5 to 10 minutes every week - about everything that is... Read more

By Mitch Joel

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January 18, 2015 9:28 AM

The Internet Is The Answer

Episode #445 of Six Pixels of Separation - The Twist Image Podcast is now live and ready for you to listen to. Don Tapscott could well be an international treasure when it comes to the Internet and the digital economy.... Read more

By Mitch Joel

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January 17, 201510:39 AM

Six Links Worthy Of Your Attention #239

Is there one link, story, picture or thought that you saw online this week that you think somebody you know must see? My friends: Alistair Croll (BitCurrent, Year One Labs, GigaOM, Human 2.0, Solve For Interesting, the author of Complete... Read more

By Mitch Joel

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January 16, 201511:21 PM

What Really Happened At CES... And Does It Matter For Marketers?

Do you wish that you could go to CES in Las Vegas? For many marketers, going to the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas is one of those bucketlist items. It's miles - and miles - of the latest, greatest... Read more

By Mitch Joel

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