Plaxo is not Unyk

UnykLogo2008In my last post I quoted Shelly Palmer as saying “So the Internet allows you to create value quickly, but direct translation into wealth is astoundingly elusive to most people.”

This reminded me of an email I received last week from Plaxo. I have been using Plaxo for over two years to provide among other things a free back up of my Outlook contacts. Since I have been using LinkedIn I have not used it to build my network as I had but all the same a very useful free tool.

But now Plaxo plan to charge for the features I use most. They have offered a free month trial of this version which also includes other interesting features. But before I could sign on for the trail I received an invite to join UNYK a free service (can’t be that new – more than 15 million users and 784, 867, 362 contacts managed) that provides all the features that Plaxo offered plus the ability to sync with my mobile … and much more.

As such I have installed UNYK and ignored the offer from Plaxo. I guess that tells me two things – I am a typical Net user … I expect everything for nothing … and the moment one company has a model in place to make money someone comes along and offers what they have invested money and time in for nothing.

So yes it is astoundingly difficult to make money developing tools and services for the online market (like me!!) … but harnessing those tools to build a Tribe of support is where the profits are to be found.

Once I have used UNYK for a while I will provide my views but in the meantime give it a go … it looks good!!

Marketing in complete turmoil

marketing mag_coverRecently in Marketing Magazine publshed a special issue “Brave New World,” aimed at helping marketers navigate the rapidly changing digital landscape. There are some insightful features, profiles and case studies offering strategies and solutions to help marketers thrive in a challenging new age by capitalizing on the endless opportunities it presents.

The article “Talkin about a revolution”  features a round-table discussion with 4 of my favorite new marketing gurus. They focus on the major shift in the digital age and why marketers must heed the old adage “Adapt or Die”

Seth Godin who has authored 10 best selling marketing books

Charlene Li who co-authored Groundswell and is a former VP at Forrester Research

Shelly Palmer who hosts Media Bytes a daily news show about technology, media and entertainment

David Weinberger who co-authored The Cluetrain Manifesto and other definitive books on “new marketing”.

The best way to sum up what they have to say is in the form of some very powerful quotes

Weinberger

“Some of the most important changes are the ones we already take for granted . Retail sites now routinely put up spaces for uncensored, unfiltered reviews by customers.

A huge shift in how retailers think about their markets.  Networked markets are more trustworthy sources of information about companies than the companies themselves is a transformative idea that we now take for granted.

One of the big principles that has changes is the one to one; its actually many to many.

The changes are so profound that some companies are just never going to be able to make the change.”

Li

“This is causing a lot of turmoil and pain because the way most marketers traditionally do marketing isn’t working anymore.”

“I admire what Proctor and Gamble has done. This is one company that is absolutely focused on it, primarily because they know the power of a company like Wallmart, being the last person in the chain. So they want to have a direct relationship with their customers. They see that to sustain that brand they cant rely on traditional media, they cant rely on relationships with people they sell through.”

“The most important thing is to get your hands dirty and actually experience it. It’s not enough to look over your teenagers shoulder to experience the new digital experience that’s out there. You have to live it, you have to make it personal, so you can actually sit in the shoes of your customers because they’re the ones engaging in this new medium. They want to engage with you as a marketer. And how you can begin a dialogue with them in this space if you don’t know how to talk to them.”

Godin

“Most organisations insist the Internet must bend to their will instead of the other way round.”

Referring to the changes that he believes companies like Porctor and Gamble must make   “The need to say “How do we use our chemists, our distribution, our insight, and our emotional connections to build new stuff., new processes, new distribution models and new relationships that make money from what’s happening.” as opposed to “How do we play defence?”

Palmer

“We’re in the middle of a transition that is unprecedented in our history. We’re leaving the industrial age and we’re fully racing into the information age and there’s not a whole hell of a lot  anyone can do about it right now.”

“You’re going to see 150 TV stations change hands in the next 90 days.”  “This is unprecedented.”

“no  corporate that’s publicly traded  gets rewarded gets rewarded for innovation.”

“Twitter is a great example of creating value in the new world without any way to translate that value into wealth. So the Internet allows you to create value quickly, but direct translation into wealth is astoundingly elusive to most people.”