@deanshaw 2013 Twitter Madness Tourney: Round 2 Recap

Round 2 Summary

The competition heated up in round 2 of the 2013 Twitter Madness Tourney as the participants vied for a coveted spot in the Sweet Sixteen.  It was a round full of twist and turns and the first ever “double elimination”.  Yes two competitors were so equally horrible that I eliminated both of them.  To fill the void I made the Twitter Madness: Round 2unprecedented move to grant the much desired spot to a loser in another match-up. They don’t call it Twitter Madness for nothing. Let this be a lesson to the field

of sixteen. If you commit Twitter atrocities during this tournament you not only disrespect me, but you disrespect your country, the Corps, and your Mama.

For the winners, see you in the Sweet Sixteen.  For the Losers, grab your bags and go home!

Featured Match-up: @mental_floss v. @jimsterne

Let’s just get the record straight, you don’t become the Twitter Madness Champion by being some ham ‘n’ egger with a Twitter account. It takes all kind of social savvy and digital acumen to reach the Twitter Madness Tourney mountain top.  So it’s not surprising, that @jimsterne played his second round match-up like a fiddle, nay, a Stradivarius.  So what did he do right this time?

  1. He re-tweeted my wrap-up from Round 1 and acknowledge that in doing so he violated Tweet Type 3 in my List of 27 Tweet Types
  2. He mentioned “poop” in a tweet.
  3. He dropped some of his own content on us with “Analytics Misery Loves Company
  4. And if that wasn’t enough, he re-tweeted a linked to my presentation at the upcoming #eMetrics Conference. I hope I’ll see all of you there!

Jim Sterne Tweets about #emetrics

Winner: @jimsterne

And now let’s take a look at the other exciting match-ups…

@FastCompany v. @spikejones: FastCompany is most certainly a firehouse of great content that they tweet day and night, night and day.  It’s a virtually ongoing education on business, technology…and pandas apparently.  But you know that person you meet at a party that corners you and drones on and on, endlessly about a bunch of shit you just don’t care that much about and you just want to punch him in the face and tell him to shut the fuck up.  That person is FastCompany. They tweeted a total of 134 times in the 2 day match-up with @spikejones.  As for Spike, he tweeted a mere 8 times and said something about zombies and hating you.  Advantage: Spike Jones
Winner: @spikejones

@unmarketing v. @TheFakeESPN: If you’re a sports fan you should definitely be following the always funny @TheFakeESPN. As a bonus they have an picture of bacon on their Twitter page – and nothing scores points in the Twitter Madness Tourney quite like bacon.  On the other side is @unmarketing who is self-admittedly “kind of a big deal on a fairly irrelevant soc media site which inflates his self-importance.”  Bacon wins. Bacon always wins.
Winner: @TheFakeESPN

@adage v. @1918: Phil, why dost thou beseech me?  Last year’s Tournament Cinderella could only muster up a couple tweets in the 2nd round match-up against Ad Age. That was meager enough to hand the win to @adage
Winner: @adage

@ovrdrv v. @TheFakeCNN: I never thought it would be possible for both sides to lose but the performance of @ovrdrv AND @TheFakeESPN was so underwhelming it was impossible to determine a winner.  So, in an unprecedented move the Commissioner has ruled that both will be bounced from the tournament and @unmarketing who lost to a picture of  bacon will be granted a second chance.  The Commissioner also announced that “Raspberry-Frosted Pop-Tarts are friggin’ awesome.” Film at 11.
Winner: @unmarketing

@HubSpot v. @AudienceCreator:  Twitter madness Tourney Rookie tweeted something about “hidden bacteria lurking on your mobile device just as I was taking a big lick off my iPhone. Not cool @AudienceCreator. Not. Cool.
Winner: @HubSpot

@jowyang v. @webby2001: In my Twitter Madness Tourney Rules I forgot to mention one very important point: “not feeling an ounce of guilt for loving Ambrosia” disqualifies you from the competition. Sorry @webby2001, that’s just how much I feel.
Winner: @jowyang

@GinaMcCrae v. @chuckhemann: The brash rookie from Cleveland continued her aggressive play in round two even poking her nose into the @FYeahAnalytics v. @erictpeterson match-up.  But she made an almost fatal mistake late in the match-up when she actually tweeted the term “Mmm duhLISH” sensing she’d really fucked up she quickly followed that up with a tweet about “Pancakewiches” which acted as the antidote to her previous misstep.  As for @chuckhemann, he spent the first part of the match traveling and then pissed me of by tweeting about being at Ruth’s Chris Steak House and eating apple tarts.
Winner: @GinaMcCrae

@frankreed v. @DavidBThomas: Frank started strong out of the gate tweeting about cheese and doughnuts and then gave us the history of Internet Meme’s. As for @DavidBThomas he offered up only a couple tweets during the match-up, but to be honest, he’s at his most brilliant on Facebook, check him out there!
Winner: @frankreed

@JustinKownacki v. @cnmoody:  There are times I wished @JustinKownacki would just wear a GoPro video camera so I could follow him around all day. Granted he uses a lot of fancy words sometimes and is way smarter than me, but the tweets I do understand and his observations on everyday live are pure gold. Nothing wrong with you @cnmoody, you just ran up against a tough Twitter hombre this time  <mental note: ask @JustinKownacki what ‘hombre” means>.
Winner: @JustinKownacki

@SeinfeldToday v. @leeodden: Would 4 measly tweets from the always brilliant @SeinfeldToday be enough to topple the Online Marketing Master?  Not this time Jerry. What is the deal with that?
Winner: @leeodden

@avinash v. @SocialMedia411: @avinash is one of the most renowned practitioners in my field of analytics and I love him like a brother, but following @SocialMedia411 is like getting a free education in new media.
Winner: @SocialMedia411

@GinnySkal v. @MicheleJKiss: @GinnySkal (why do I always read that as SkinnyGal?) is a force of nature here in the Triangle but she has two passions I can’t get with, cats and Pat Sajak. Fortunately for @MicheleJKiss she only shares one of those passions…unless she would like to publicly declare her love for Mr. Sajak?????   Barring a last minute admission, the edge here goes to @MicheleJKiss
Winner: @MicheleJKiss

@iowahawkblog v. @kaimac: OK, I’ll be honest here. @kaimac wins because I’m tired of @iowahawkblog’s right wing crap and because Brooklyn Brutus is the wind beneath @kaimac’s wings
Winner: @kaimac

@FYeahAnalytics v. @erictpeterson: In a stunning development, @FYeahAnalytics wins by forfeit as @erictpeterson declares that “Twitter is not a game”
Winner: @FYeahAnalytics

@mitchjoel v. @AndyBeal: I just talked to my Mom on the phone. She said that @AndyBeal is the son she wanted me to be, so I guess he wins this round.  It helps that @mitchjoel only tweeted 3 times during the match-up 😉
Winner: @AndyBeal

So there you have it, the Sweet 16 of the 2013 Twitter Madness Tourney.  Good luck to all and to all a good night!

The @deanshaw 2013 Twitter Madness Tourney Tips Off! Round 1 Coverage

Ya know who should win the @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney this year? Me, that’s who.  I mean this on-going monitoring and analysis of my brackets is a freakin’ pain in the ass.  But alas, I am barred from participating in the event because of my overwhelming advantage.

Round 1So, the 1st round is in the books and as expected there we’re some stunning upsets.  That’s the beauty of this tournament you don’t have to be a “Rock Star” or “Ninja” or even a “Guru”. You can be just a regular old hack like @andybeal and still advance in Twitter Madness.  All you need is some interesting or clever tweets and you can have your own “One Shining Moment”  My GAWD that song is horrible.

Let’s take a look at my in depth analysis that I just wasted 3 hours on and see who’s in and who’s out…

FEATURE MATCH-UP: @chrisbrogan v. @GinaMcCrae 

It always warms the cockles of my heart when I see a virtual unknown embrace the Twitter Madness Tourney and step up to the plate oblivious to the challenge that lay ahead.  Such was the case in the epic 1st Round match-up we saw in McCrae vs. Brogan. In a Titanic upset the wunderkind David from Cleveland upset the Goliath of all things Twitter.  The Tourney newbie seemed un-intimidated and play surprisingly well by mocking my tourney.  A ballsy move by the Twitter Tourney diaper dandy.

Ain't Nobody Got Time Fo Dat

@deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney Gets Mocked

Not to be openly mocked @deanshaw mocks the mocker:

Willy Wonka Mocks the Mocker

@deanshaw Mocks the Mocker

McCrae brilliantly followed my mock of her mock with another mock, pulling off the first ever double-mock meme in the history of the tournament

The Mocker mocks the Mock of the Mockee

As for Chris, he ain’t got time fo dat.
Winner: @GinaMcCrae

And now a summary of the other exciting matchups…
@FastCompany v. @mikewhitmore: Fast Company’s tweet barrage (almost 200 unique in total) was way too much for Former digital anthropologist, entrepreneur, husband, blogger, musician, professional speaker, networker & Nutella lover
Winner @FastCompany

@spikejones v. @jtobin: While Jim brought an interesting NCAA Bracket based on Twitter presence the wily Spike Jones let others do the talking for him while he spoke at some Word of Mouth thingy dingy. Talk about advocacy!
Winner: @spikejones

@unmarketing v. @jamieplesser: Like @spikejones, @unmarketing let his audience speak for him including quoting him on this gem “The difference between a person with 7 years retail experience and 1 year, is the person with 7 years hates people more.” Since I’ll probably shamelessly steal that I may as well give him entre to the next round.
Winner: @unmarketing

@TheFakeESPN v. @SmallsMeasures: Tough matchup for Smalls and @TheFakeESPN didn’t choke it away
Winner: @The FakeESPN

@adage v. @HelenASPopkin: Could Ad Age AND Helen Popkin both forgotten about their matchup?  A decidedly underwhelming performance by both goes to Ad Age for including Oreos and Kit Kats n the same tweet.
Winner: @adage

@unbounce v. @1918: In the best match-up of the day, last year’s tournament darling @1918 stood toe to toe with the Canadian un-bounce advocates. When the match ended in a statistical tie, I had to go to the rules books which clearly states in Rule 219, Article 3 that “in the event of a statistical tie, the win will be awarded to the person who tweets about BBQ the most.”
Winner: @1918

@JudahWorldChamp v. @ovrdrv: Both competitors played sloppy twittering but OverDrive was less bad than Judah.
Winner: @ovrdrv

@TheFakeCNN v. @CoreyCreed: The Fake CNN is just way too funny in thi matchup and beat out the Internet Marketing Guru
Winner: @TheFakeCNN

@HubSpot v. @SquareJawMedia:  SquareJaw can only muscle out 4 tweets and gets buried by an avalanche of HubSpot informational goodness
Winner: @HubSpot

@anjeanettec v. @AudienceCreator: Audience Creator won by default as the comedy of Anjeanette took an unfortunate hiatus during the matchup
Winner: @AudienceCreator

@jowyang v. @digitalalex: Wait, I wonder if Digital Alex was hanging with @anjeanettec the past few days as he was curiously absent from his matchup with @jowyang
Winner: @jowyang

@webby2001 v. @glenngabe: Another close battle, with Webby edging out Gabe because of some original content and I think he said something about brisket.
Winner: @webby2001

@chuckhemann v. @RudiShumpert: Are you effing kidding me Shumpert? I give you entre into the biggest Twitter Tournament on the planet and you tweet 4 times including a RT and one mentioning Klout? I can’t wait to see you at eMetrics so I can give you a piece of my mind…and a drink…I recall I owe you a drink.
Winner: @chuckhemann

@MarkRaganCEO v. @frankreed: Wait…what??? MarkRaganCEO didn’t even tweet during his matchup?  Are you kidding me? Are you getting your Tourney advice from @RudiShumprt or something???
Winner: @FrankReed

@DavidBThomas v. @Cole_Watts: Dave Thomas started off using the “I’ll just be the scribe for @ToddWheatland” tweet strategy which hasn’t been used in over 45 years, and just when I was about to vanquish him to the loser pile he said something about a coupon for ‘Critter Removal”
Winner: @DavidBThomas

@TheOnion v. @JustinKownacki: I knee jerk reaction was to just give this to @TheOnion, but Justin’s observations on everyday life were just to good…and always are.
Winner: @JustinKownacki

@cnmoody v. @stevehall: Moody plays small but comes up big.  Sometimes less is more.
Winner: @cnmoody

@SeinfeldToday v. @carlsonjill: I guess Jill didn’t want to come out to play. Seinfeld wins by default
Winner: @SeinfeldToday

@leeodden v. @JayDolan: Lee wasn’t at his best but he was good enough to slip by at Jay kid.
Winner: @leeodden

@avinash v. @awarenessinc: Two legendary competitors stumbled during their matchup but @Avinash said something about the snooze button…and I freaking LOVE the snooze button.
Winner: @avinash

@SocialMedia411 v. @mktgdouchebag: Despite passing along a great video with David Bowie and Sonic Youth  and a FREAKING great Social Media Strategy Generator , the Social Media 411 wins based on volume of great content
Winner: @SocialMedia411

@dmscott v. @GinnySkal: In another big upset, @GinnySkal squeaks out a victory over the heavily favored @dmscott despite picking Marquette to go all the way in the NCAA Tournament
Winner: @GinnySkal

@gemise v. @MicheleJKiss: @gemise violated Tweet Type 3 too many times and was disqualified
Winner: @MicheleJKiss

@mental_floss v. @coreyspencer: Apparently @coreyspencer is a Canadian living in Utah who LIKES movies, comic books, video games, digital marketing and analytics, but LOVES his sweet wife and 3 insane little boys but DOESN’T tweet during the Twitter Madness Tourney
Winner: @mental_floss

@jeffreylcohen v. @jimsterne: Last year’s Twitter Madness Tourney Champion wins because if he doesn’t he’ll throw another pox on my house and because I’m scared he’ll beat me up at next month’s eMetrics Conference.
Winner: @jimsterne

@iowahawkblog v. @zachward: Ya know how I said I follow some people cuz they piss me off? @iowahawkblog is one of those people and yet he advances to the next round. WTF is wrong with me?
Winner: @iowahawkblog

@badbanana v. @kaimac: @BadBanana picked the wrong time to be bad. @kaimac advances
Winner: @kaimac

@wwwbigbaldhead v. @FYeahAnalytics: I had high hopes for my favorite zombie killer but apparently slaying the dead doesn’t mean slaying the Twitter competition.
Winner: @FYeahAnalytics

@lruettimann v. @erictpeterson: Eric has blocked me from seeing his Tweets and has disavowed the Twitter Madness Tourney altogether.  A savvy show of reverse psychology if ever I saw one – and for that he advances to the next round.

Eric Peterson is undecided

Eric Peterson is undecided

Eric Peterson is still undecided

Eric Peterson is still undecided

Winner: @erictpeterson

@mitchjoel v. @OMLee: Despite a killer Hot Dog Baseball Salary calculator that @OMLee offered to the world, Mitch wins due to his Canadianess.
Winner: @mitchjoel

@AndyBeal v. @johnlovett: You’re in the Twitter Madness Tourney and you only tweet once??? John you have disrespected your country, the Corps, and your Momma.
Winner: @AndyBeal

Congrats to the winners, you’re on to the 2nd round and even tougher competition.  For the losers, go on home and cry to your Mammys.

To check out the brackets go to: http://challonge.com/TwitterMadness2013

Survey of Super Bowl XLVII Interest

A study commissioned by the @deanshaw Institute indicates that the majority up America couldn’t could less about the outcome of this year’s Super Bowl.  Based on a survey of one respondent the results clearly showed that from coast to coast there was very little interest in who the eventual winner would be. There were three outliers in the data clustered around Maryland and Northern California. There also appeared to be strong interest in Southern Nevada.

In a related study, it was determined that 97% of people would rather pour buffalo wing sauce in their eyes than see Ray Lewis do that stupid dance again. The other 3% classified themselves as legally blind.

 

Super Bowl XLVII Survey

Kristin Stewart: The Greatest Crisis Management Guru of All Time

Kristen Stewart is a TrampireGranted she is just the smokin’ hot young actress from the Twilight series, but if the acting thing doesn’t work out Kristin Stewart might have a career as the world’s great Crisis Management Consultant.  No really, I’m serious about that.  Witness her recent scandal where she was caught canoodling with the very-married and 20 years her senior, director of the Twilight series, Rupert Sanders.

Her response to the allegations were straight from the “Here’s how you handle a crisis” playbook.  Let’s take a look:

On July 17, 2012, the actress was caught by photographers in a series of steamy rendezvous with her Snow White and the Huntsman director, Rupert Sanders, 41 and on July 24th those photos were splashed across the pages of US Weekly.

On July 25, 2012 Stewart issues the following statement to People Magazine:

I’m deeply sorry for the hurt and embarrassment I’ve caused to those close to me and everyone this has affected. This momentary indiscretion has jeopardized the most important thing in my life, the person I love and respect the most, Rob. I love him, I love him, I’m so sorry.

Boom!

So what did she do right?

1. She responded quickly.  Rather than let the media or tabloids (are they the same things?) drive the narrative, she immediately responded to the allegations. By owning the story you own the direction it takes.  Typically, companies will adopt the “close your eyes and cover your ears” response and hope it will all go away.  As John Edwards will tell you, it doesn’t always happen that way

2. She told the truth – Many crisis experts will recite the adage “it’s not the crime, it’s the cover-up.” Isn’t that right President Nixon? Rather than to the typical knee jerk “The allegations are totally false and I will work aggressively to clear my name” routine, Stewart admitted to the affair and in doing so neutered the story in its tracks.  Is any of this making any sense to you U.S. Representative Anthony Weiner?

3. Her statement was brief and to the point. Rather than write a soliloquy explaining herself she stuck with a simple, matter of fact admission. No excuses. No detailed explanation. This is in contrast to the epic Tiger Woods’ explanation of his sordid affairs which almost needed commercial break s it was so long.

4. She apologized – There was no finger pointing, no scapegoating, just a simple admission and apology. She didn’t even name her canoodling partner. Is this making any sense Time magazine writer, Washington Post columnist, and CNN host Fareed Zakaria?

5. She was sincere – Her statement is an obvious heartfelt apology.  This wasn’t something run through her publicists or legal team and it shows. Any of this sinking in Rush Limbaugh?

Of course, her perfect response to the allegation put her “team” into panic mode as they worked to downplay and even deny the affair, which only served to bring focus back on the rumors when Stewart had effectively squashed the story.  This brings us to another rule of crisis management:

6. Manage the crisis through a clear and consistent message – preferably through a designated spokesperson. In this case Stewart was that spokesperson.  By contradicting her statement they have only reignited the scandal and begged the media to wonder what really happened. Way to go overzealous publicist people.

Has she taking her lumps? Of course she has and so will you. But she minimized the damage by following a perfectly executed crisis management plan. And if losing that douchebag Robert Pattinson is part of the punishment then I would say she’s already way ahead!

So say what you will about Kristen Stewart’s acting chops, but if you’re ever in need of a good Crisis Communication Consultant give the Trampire a call because she probably handled her crisis better than you’ll handle yours.

LinkedIn and When “Free” is not “Free”

I drank a fucking boatload of Jack Daniel’s. To the point where they sent me a deed for one square foot of land in Tennessee so that I could officially be a Tennessee squire. I offered to do an ad for them after that, and I got a very nice letter back saying, “Bill, we love you, but this shit sells itself.  – Bill Maher

A couple days ago I got an email from LinkedIn offering a ‘Free Month of LinkedIn Premium’.  Hmm, I thought, LinkedIn is really the shit when is come to getting found by employers.  I can honestly say that absolutely every opportunity brought to me in the last couple years has come through LinkedIn.  More interestingly, in every occasion, it was the actual employer, not a headhunter that contacted me.

<SIDENOTE: This is bad news if you’re a headhunter or monster.com)

All of this exposure came through a regular LinkedIn profile and without any active outreach on my part.  I’m actually quite content where I’m at.  So before I get on my rant about LinkedIn, first let me say this: If you don’t have a complete profile set-up on LinkedIn, stop reading this now and go do it.

Now!

I’m Serious.

I’ll stop typing until you get back…

See wasn’t that easy?

Ok, here’s the rant I promised and if you listen close there’s a lesson here for all Marketers.

So I got this email from LinkedIn…

 

Notice the call to action…

Free is sometimes not free

Wow! Personalized and everything! It’s like they said “Dean we know you like us and we like you too. And since we like each other so much we’re gonna do you a favor.”  So with the bait set, I started thinking that as good a LinkedIn has been, maybe I could get even more from it with LinkedIn Premium.  I knew there were other paid versions of LinkedIn, but hadn’t thought too much about it until this email arrived.  Bravo LinkedIn Email team.  I’ll bite and give you a click-through.  Nothing to lose right?

So what do I see next?

LinkedIn Premium Options

Ok, this is good; it’s clearly spelling out the differences between the various levels of LinkedIn accounts.  I can clearly see what I have, and what I’m missing out on.  I’m still in your web LinkedIn!  Great job so far.  Let’s get that “Free” trial….

There's no such thing as a free lunch

Wait…what the f#&K is this??? It’s like, a checkout page, with like, credit card info and shit.  I thought this was free?  I mean it said “free” all over the place?  When does “free” mean “give us your credit card info?”  The answer of course is “free” means give us your credit card when it’s not an offer to try a solution more so than an offer to test your memory.

It’s at that point I notice the subtle reminder…

Linkedin Fine Print

Well LinkedIn, this is where I jump off.  Geez and you were so close.

I wish us Marketing folks would quit it with these shady tricks (that’s all they are – tricks).  You see,

“Free” is “Free”.

“Free” is not surcharges, hidden fees, shipping & handling, fine print.

“Free” is “Free”.

“Free” is not “Free*”

* Discount applies to the promotional period only. Your card will start being charged when the promotional period has ended.

“Free” is “Free”

“Free” is not “Hey we’ll let you try it but not before you give us your credit card info so we can unscrupulously charge you in 30 days because by then you’ve forgotten about even signing up for the trial and our research department said that while 38% of you will be pissed off and call us to bitch and complain causing some bad PR that we’ll smooth over with a slick social media camnpaign, 62% of you won’t even notice the charge and it will be a revenue windfall for us which is important cuz we’re a public company and need to grow revenue so our shareholders will be happy.”

 ###

As a Marketer I want to offer a good product at a fair price with great service and support.  As a consumer I want the same things.  As a Marketer if I have to employ “tricks” to sell my product, it means that my product can’t stand on its own.  As a Marketer, it also means that I’m lazy and resorting the same bag of tricks that I detest as a consumer.

Let’s be better than that.  Let’s promote our products and services the way we would want them promoted to us.  Let’s forget that 3 pt. font exists and stop it with the fine print.  Let’s stop thinking about fooling the customer and think about how to provide value to the customer.

In the end, LinkedIn, a service I love, missed an opportunity to give me a taste of LinkedIn Premium with no-strings attached.  They could have given me the upgrade “truly free” for 30 days, shown me value, and then pitched me.   Instead, they gambled, asked for credit card info and hoped I’d forget the ticking clock of the trial and somehow not notice the recurring charges.  And that hurts my heart.

Message:

To LinkedIn: Your product is better than that, you don’t need to resort to “Trick Marketing”

To Marketers: If you need to resort to “Trick Marketing” to sell your product, try instead to make your product so good it doesn’t need tricks.  Or as wise old Jack Daniels might say: “Make the shit sell itself”.

Digital Marketing Buzzword BINGO: 2012 Edition

Hey folks, chances are you are headed to the latest greatest new media/social media/digital marketing conference sometime soon where gurus, ninjas, rock stars, and mavens of the industry will tell you the same bullshit they told you last year. But to make everything sound new they are going to wrap that same old shit in brand new monikers. And let’s face it, if you don’t know the lingo, your peers are going to laugh at you, and your chances to be taken seriously will be greatly impaired. So, after weeks of research I have assembled the definitive list of terms to look out for in 2012, while you traverse the country attending these various wastes of time valuable events. And in order to make it interesting for you I have assembled all these terms on a convenient and fun to play BINGO card.

So be sure to bring this along to your next conference. The rules are easy, the more terms you cross-off at your next conference as they are mentioned, the more bullshit you’re being bamboozled with. If, by chance, you should happen to fill in the entire card, well, then you’re probably at SXSW.

Digital Marketing Buzzword Bingo

Communication and the Art of Not Communicating

Men don’t care what’s on TV. They only care what else is on TV. – Jerry Seinfeld

Recently Jeremiah Owyang (@jowyang) tweeted a photo from the stage of his panel at SXSWi. His intent was to show the throng of people who had showed up for his early morning panel. I’d like to discuss how attending a 9:30 a.m. panel classifies one as a “morning bird”, but that post is for another day. What struck me about his picture is the fact that not one, let me repeat that, “NOT ONE” of the people pictured in his audience is in a conversation with their neighbor. Seriously, look. Everyone’s attention is focused on whatever is happening on their mobile device. Here we are at SXSWi – the “i” stands for “Interactive” by the way – and there isn’t one person “interacting”. An entire conference focused on how to engage with people, communicate your message, develop your digital listening skills, and we have an audience doing none of that…

Communication?

I’ll admit that I am being hypocritical here, and I am as fused to my phone as anyone. Hell, I’m not even paying attention to myself as I write this because I’m more curious as to what’s going on in my Facebook news stream. But this photo is stunning to me. When did we become so adept and aware of the importance of communication yet completely lose the ability to communicate?

Everywhere I go, I see the scene in Jeremiah’s audience playing out. In airports, malls, family gatherings, and most frighteningly, behind the wheel of cars!!! We have become so consumed with consuming the world within our mobile devices that we no longer notice the real world go on around us.

Technology allows us to do magical things that we couldn’t have dreamt about even 10 years ago. And that is a good thing. But it has also made us slaves to those things. Paraphrasing Seinfeld, we don’t want to know what’s going on around us; we want to know what’s else is going on.

I got an idea. Let’s take some time everyday and look for opportunities to engage with the people around us, you know, like in the olden days before iphones, when we really communicated with each other. Next time you’re in the audience at an event, waiting for Jeremiah (or whomever) to tell you how important it is to communicate with your audience…communicate with your audience – those people around you – ya, that guy sitting right next to you. Stop tweeting, stop checking in, stop posting, stop texting, and stop browsing because that guy right next to you has a fascinating story to share, and so do you.

The Championship of the 2012 @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney

As a boy growing up in Winnipeg, Manitoba, I had dreams. Dreams of scoring the winning goal in the Stanley Cup finals, dreams of one day walking on the moon, dreams of starring alongside Goldie Hawn in a badly producedThe Twitter Madness Championship Trophy romantic comedy, and dreams of one day winning the @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney. But alas those dreams were derailed by poor skating skills, a moth-balled space program, a shortcoming in Hollywood good-looks, and ineligibility to participate in my own Twitter Tourney. Just as the stars aligned against me, they shot beacons of hope to 64 competitors in this year’s tournament. One by one those stars dimmed until there were just two remaining challengers for this year’s crown.

The last Tweeters standing are @jowyang and @jimsterne. They both showed the mettle, endurance, and acumen over each of their opponents to meet here in the Twitter Madness Final. As legends in their respective fields this promised to be a rock ‘em sock ‘em final. Let’s go to the action shall we?

Tale of the Tape

Tale of the Tape

Color Commentary: @jowyang
Jeremiah showed his usual consistency during the final, bringing the noise AND the funk. He appeared to say “This is who I am, take me or leave me” This was a surprisingly courageous strategy given that this was likely the most important two days of tweeting in his life. But he showed amazing poise as he offered up some great tweets including:

Worst URLs Ever!

Which revealed some amazingly funny (and real) corporate URLs like:

* Experts Exchange, a knowledge base where programmers can exchange advice and views at http://www.expertsexchange.com

* Looking for a pen? Look no further than Pen Island at http://www.penisland.net

* Then of course, there’s the Italian Power Generator company… http://www.powergenitalia.com

The snarky but insightful:

Jowyang Facebook

And alerting us to a new search engine that no one will ever use:

Duck Duck Go

He was really focused and effective until…

iPhone bug
iPhone Bug
iPhone Bug

In a jaw-dropping twitter meltdown, Jeremiah became distracted by an iPhone glitch that derailed the intense focus that had become his hallmark. By the time the issue was resolved, the buzzer had sounded on his Twitter Madness Championship. But did he do enough to win?

Color Commentary: @jimsterne
Unlike Jeremiah, Jim took an opposite tact for the final, and in chameleon-like fashion departed from his normal web/social media measurement focus to go “all in” on the Twitter Madness Tourney. At much risk to his legion of Twitter followers, who undoubtedly thought Jim had fallen off the Tweet wagon, Jim mixed in a heavy dose of content targeting the championship that he knew was needed to win the competition and gain true social media credibility.

So in addition to his normal tweet programming, Jim surgically addressed my blog post “The Complete List of 25 Tweet Types” posting examples of each type of tweet douchebaggery with amazing accuracy.

A sampling of 25 Tweet Types

So it would seem obvious that this would cement a victory for the metrics man right? Well, actually not really. How’s that for suspense?

Final Analysis:
Ok, ya see folks, the thing with this Twitter stuff is that it’s all really just an endless stream of blather with a shelf life of about 10 sec. before it evaporates into the digital ether. You can talk about “influence” and “engagement”, and God forbid, “Klout” all you want, but in the end all that stuff is just bullshit. “Real” engagement doesn’t happen here in the digital world – it happens at your work, on your campus, on the field, in the grocery store, and at home. That’s were real connections are made. So put down your laptop, your phone, your Twitter, your Facebook, and go talk to someone, you know, someone non-digital, and go have a real conversation.

And without further ado (drum roll please…or rim shot….your choice) the winner of the 2012 @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tournament is:

@jimsterne

Listen, I think all of the people I follow on Twitter are great, especially those who made it in this year’s tourney. You keep me informed, make me laugh, often ruin my productivity, and make life a little more interesting. For that, I thank you all!

But what separated Jim this year was the fact that the tournament started with me being an absolute unknown in his world. As the tournament progressed and Jim moved along in it, we interacted (digitally) about the tournament. At some point we inspired each other to create blog posts. Me in a post called ‘Social Media; Influence, Engagement and the Elusive ROI’ (For what it’s worth Jim told me I was wrong and threw a pox on my house) and Jim in a post entitled ‘Social Intercourse: How to Score Online

Eventually, however, the “digital” became “human” and ended on the patio of a Starbucks in North Carolina, where Jim and I traded wild and woolly stories from the world of analytics. The vapor of Twitter had turned into the caramel macchiato of real conversation. And that, my friend, is “engagement”.

@deanshaw and @jimsterne chillin'

Congratulations Jim!

So there you have it. The 2102 @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney.

Congratulation to the runner-up @jowyang who will assume the crown should @jimsterne be unable to fulfill the requirements of champion. Odds are 50/50 on that.

Finally, congratulations to all tourney participants, who all bring value to my twitterstream every day.

See you all again in 2013.

@deanshaw

Now back to my regularly scheduled and woefully backlogged blog posts

To check out the final brackets go to @deanshaw Twitter Madness 2012 Brackets
For more info on the tourney check out my 2012 Twitter Madness Tourney Page

The Big Dance – 2012 @deanshaw Twitter Madness Championship Set

@deanshaw 2012 Twitter Madness Tourney - Final Four

Phil Buckley (@1918) made this & I am shamelessly using it Goddamit.

It was just a few weeks ago that 64 hopefuls enter the arena of Twitter competition in the 2012 @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney. From longshots to titans, from locals to global icons, each held of dream of walking away with the prestigious title of Twitter Madness Champion. This honor sits alongside the Green Jacket, the Oscar, and a Nobel Peace Prize as one of the world’s most revered honors. Last year, a country bumpkin named @spikejones from Austin came from virtual obscurity to become the competition’s first champion. On Wednesday (or whenever I can get to the results – I’m friggin’ busy people), a new champion will join him.

And who will vie for this most cherished title? Well, let’s take a look at the final four matchups…

@jimsterne v. @1918: Phil (@1918) Buckley continued his unlikely and inspired run into his Final 4 matchup against web analytics wonderman @jimsterne. Phil ignored the Las Vegas bookies, who offered him at a bazillion to 1 odds, and powered his way into the Final 4 doing what he does best; offering a mix of compelling SEO-focused marketing links, original content on his blog, and promoting and engaging with local social media birds of a feather. Ya see Phil doesn’t pine to be a small fish in a big pond, preferring to be a quite massive fish in our humble Raleigh-Durham pond. I swear there isn’t a marketing related event in the Triangle that Phil isn’t smack dab in the middle of. I heard he’ll even venture to Carrboro if the hippie tree-huggers promise not to hound him for autographs.

Perhaps the most steady-eddie competitor in this year’s Tourney, Phil stuck with his tried and true game plan starting with cordial note to his adversary @jimsterne. Frankly I would have preferred some good old-fashioned trash talk but Phil always takes the high road on these types of interactions. He followed up with some of his usual high quality SEO content but lest you thought he was a one trick pony also added some mad design skillz to the competition, designing the Final Four image you see here. I’m pretty sure it was Phil’s way of saying “Dean, your images suck, get a load of this”, but I’m not gonna take that personal (cough…..point deductions…cough). Finally, he was able to slip in the word ‘bacon’ in a couple tweets scoring him a quick 76.24 Twitter Madness points. In short, Phil put up a great score and dared @jimsterne to beat it.

That brings us to @jimsterne. The heavy favorite coming into the matchup, Jim came out swinging starting with a congenial acknowledgement of his opponent Phil, scoring major points by sharing a link to Phil’s blog, despite the increased visibility and influence it was sure to afford Phil with the Sterne followers. In addition to his regular sharing of web analytic content (this hits the bulls-eye of my professional heart and soul) he tweeted some things he probably wasn’t even aware would contribute to his Final Four success.

First, he tweeted this:
'Nothing happens until someone gets pissed off' - Tom Peters

Two things stuck out here:
1. @mktgdouchebag was actually a competitor in last year’s @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney Final Four, seeing his name come up at this point in the competition reminded me of the excitement of last year’s tourney as well as just how small this social media world is.
2. I LOVE that freakin quote cuz I think its soooooo true. Let’s get pissed off America and make sh*t happen!

Next, he tweeted this:

Little did Jim know that I spent 12 years of my life in T.O. (as us Torontonians call it) and the image of that skyline reminded me of how much I love that city. Seriously folks, if you’re on the fence about this emetrics thing, just go. It’s in freakin’ Toronto. And stop by Lee’s Palace and watch some sweaty, local alternative rock. They may say something about me skippin’ out on a tab but they’re definitely talking about a different Dean Shaw.

I heart you Toronto

I heart you Toronto

Then he tweeted:

Why yes I do call myself an analyst and yes I did buy 10 lottery tickets. Eff you @jimsterne!
(Note: I’ll be at work Monday so it’s fair to assume that I didn’t win the lottery and Jim “may” get the last laugh here)

Mega Lottery Loser

Running scared from @1918’s stellar performance and continuing his Venn diagram fascination he threw this is the ring:

deanjshaw.com venn diagram

and so as not to look like he was pandering to the judge, he then offered a candid and telling opinion of my tweeting prowess:

(p.s. they turned down my order explaining my tweets weren’t worthy of such fine parchment)

Not content with questioning my acumen, he once again poked ‘retargeting’ fun at himself:

Oooh la la

Spanx Jim???? I’m blushing for you.

Finally, in an attempt to bring some culture to this sordid event, he offered up his prose in the form of a limerick:

Wow! This is horrible!

Sadly, he lost 746 points for this as it was quite simply HORRIBLE, and embarrassed leprechauns everywhere.

In the end @1918 was very strong, but @jimsterne was stronger. But be warned 2013 Twitter Madness Tourney competitors, the secret is out and look for @1918 to be a favorite in next year’s spectacle

Winner: @jimsterne

===============

@jowyang v. @kaimac: It’s obvious @kaimac wasn’t listening to the sage counseling I gave @RudiShumpert at the conclusion of Elite 8 matchups so let me freakin’ repeat….

“Folks, let me be clear on something. When you get to the Elite 8 of the @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney and you don’t tweet on the first day of the matchup you disrespect me. But you not only disrespect me, you also disrespect your country, the Corps, and your Mama.”

I don’t know how clearer I could have been on this. I mean anyone who speaks English could not….wait a minute…@kaimac is Irish. I mean right off the boat smelling of beer and potatoes Irish.* Could it be that writing these posts in English as opposed to @kaimac’s native Gaelic has caused confusion for the young lad? If that’s the case, then I offer this to @kaimac:

Cad é na fuck cearr le fear agat? Ná tuigeann tú go bhfuil tú i @deanshaw Tourney Twitter Madness Final Four? Cuir síos ar an Guiness agus do cheann a fháil ar an Mick cluiche!

I’m glad I cleared that up.

On a positive note he did come strong on day 2 with a tweet offering last year’s champ @spikejones advice on serving me with a restraining order. I need that kind of discipline now and again.

As for @jowyang he seemed to find his groove with a variety of Twitter goodness including (but not limited to):

Comparing Apple fanboys to potato crazy Japanese monkeys.
Genetically modified goats mutated with Spider DNA to create spider webs in milk.
• Theorizing that our grandkids will laugh at our ‘paper’ and ‘metal’ system of currency
• A cute and boyishly naïve belief that Google+ has a hope in Hell (even though his own blog has no +1 capabilities)

* I don’t know this to be fact and it may be a gross mischaracterization and stereotyping of @kaimac and Irish people everywhere. Then again my Irish friend ‘Gus-Boy’ has been in America for almost 20 years and does, in fact, still smell of beer and potatoes.

Winner: @jowyang

===============

So there you have it, 64 competitors whittled down to 2 battle worthy competitors. To quote Denver Bronco quarterback Peyton Manning (ok that sounds weird), “IT’S ON LIKE DONKEY KONG!

Let’s have at it boys!

As for @kaimac and @1918, you have inspired a nation gentleman…ok…probably not…now shoo.

To check out the brackets go to @deanshaw Twitter Madness 2012 Brackets
For more info on the tourney check out my 2012 Twitter Madness Tourney Page

@deanshaw 2012 Twitter Madness Tourney: Elite 8 Edition

2012 Twitter Madness Tourney: Elite 8 Wrap Up
2012 Round Elite 8 Wrap Up

I believe it was Walt Whitman who said “Damn, the @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney is off the chain, dawg”  Truer words were never spoken as the 2012 Edition of the Tournament was proving to be the most unpredictable and exciting in the 112 year history of the event. From grizzled veterans, to renowned celebrities, to local phenoms, the event has been one cliffhanger after another.  So captivating has been the tournament that I got a call from Steven Spielberg yesterday who wanted to option the event for a movie.  Well, I’m pretty sure it was Spielberg. I didn’t actually pick up the call and he didn’t leave a message, but c’mon, this tournament has been so spectacular why wouldn’t he yearn to base a movie on it?  Anyway, I’m sure he’ll call back and if he doesn’t I’ll let Quentin Terantino do the movie cuz I know he’s gonna call.

But enough of my name-dropping Hollywood exploits, let’s see what happened in the Elite 8…

@jimsterne v. @frankreed: Frank made a Cinderella run in this year’s tournament but this time the clock struck 12 on this Marketing Pilgrim and his golden carriage turned into a pumpkin. So what went wrong? Well not much really, this is just a case of running into the Twitter Buzzsaw that is @JimSterne.  So what did Jim do that was so special? Let me summarize.

  1. He freakin’ brought Venn Diagrams to the party. This hasn’t been seen since the ’54 Twitter Madness Tourney and Jim’s retro strategy was well timed.
  2. He pointed out his shortcomings. This is the first time in the history of Twitter that this has ever been done and Jim showed true courage in being the trailblazer of this type of humility.Male Pattern Baldness Rocks!
  1. He’s bringing his case for Twitter supremacy to the source. And I suspect I can con him into paying for the coffee as well.

Winner: @JimSterne

 

@TheOnion v. @1918: In a true David vs. Goliath matchup, local upstart Phil Buckley (aka @1918) tried to stop the undeniable force of @TheOnion. First, some background. according to his website 1918.com his twitter handle and seemingly his whole existence is predicated around the Boston Red Sox, and in its incarnation his Suck it Bostonweb presence was to honor the year of that team’s last World Series Championship (1918).  A worthy tribute I suppose but I am going to be perfectly honest with you, I hate the Red Sox, in fact there’s not much I like about Boston except for Bobby Orr, chowder, and the band.  As far as the Red Sox go, I’ll never forgive them for poaching Pedro Martinez from my beloved Montreal Expos, which proved to be the final death nail in the downward spiral of the franchise.

But this isn’t about grudges right? So let me put away my well ingrained hatred for the city and baseball team I loathe the most and focus on the man himself, and his performance. I noticed that he secured a new gig which has to be attributed to his run in the Twitter Madness Tourney. I mean that’s the kind of power this event has…it catapults careers!  To his credit he put on another successful #SEOMeetUp here in Raleigh (in an Irish Pub no less) featuring a guy making mad cash doing a web show called Freezerburns which Phil deftly promoted on Twitter with great skill. On the downside I noticed that he referenced the term “awesome sauce” which deducted 2.74 point from his score.

Now, how about @TheOnion.  @TheOnion was Jon Stewart before Jon Stewart was Jon Stewart. If that kind of humor floats your boat than there’s no one better feed to follow than @TheOnion. But during the matchup with Phil, there just seemed to be something missing in the normal stellar Onion reporting. I can’t really put my finger on it but can’t help but think they were overlooking @1918.  In fact, I detected some subtle sarcasm pointed towards Phil in one of their tweets:

I heart @TheOnion

So the question is, how much equity do I allow @The Onion, who is consistently the go-to Twitter account for all the fake news that’s fit to print.  The answer: “none Goddammit”. This is the freakin’ @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney and you better show up ready to play when the bell sounds.  So as the Onion might say:

@deanshaw : A Legend in his own mind

Winner: @1918

 

@RudiShumpert v. @jowyang: A great matchup between the Sr. Director- Technology of Keystone Solutions  and Jeremiah “Don’t call me Jow Yang” Owyang, Industry Wonk to the stars at Altimeter Group.  Jeremiah came out of the gates strong with his mix of shared and original content.  This is where Jeremiah really excels.  Rather than just use Twitter as a glorified Mashable link feeder, he throws in some of his own content.  Imagine that, a guy creating his own content and not RTing the same shit that’s been RTed a bazillion times by everyone else.  He did make a huge mistake however when he Tweeted a link that was via him. What the fuck is up with that.  As anyone familiar with my list of 25 Tweet Types will tell you, this is a clear violation of Tweet Type 3, and actually might be a new strain of Tweet, the “I RT my own Tweets” Tweet.  With a Douchebag Scale Ranking of 8 this really hurt his score and could have been fatal.

Caution: Douchy Tweet Ahead!

As for Rudi, well he inexplicitly posted no tweets on the first day of the matchup.  Folks, let me be clear on something. When you get to the Elite 8 of the @deanshaw Twitter Madness Tourney and you don’t tweet on the first day of the matchup, you disrespect me. But you not only disrespect me, you also disrespect your country, the Corps, and your Mama.  Needless to say, that despite his faux pas Jeremiah was enough of a hare to beat Rudi’s tortoise to the finish line

Winner: @jowang

 

@kaimac v. @AndyBeal: So @kaimac said somethin’ about ‘Titantic’ and then @andybeal said somethin’ about ‘Cinderella’ and then @kaimac said somethin’ about ‘Brooklyn’ and then @andybeal said somethin’ about ‘tru dat’ and then @kaimac said somethin’ about ‘Irish beer’ and then @andybeal said somethin’ about ‘trakur’  and then @kaimac said somethin’ about ‘potatoes’ and then @andybeal said somethin’ about ‘being sexy and he knows it’ and then @kaimac said somethin’ about ‘Amazon closing at 7pm’ and then @andybeal said somethin’ about an ‘Android condom phone’ and then @kaimac said somethin’ about ‘US Soccer’ and then @andybeal said somethin’ about ‘ukeleles’ and then @kaimac said somethin’ about ‘WTF’ and then @andybeal said somethin’ about ‘lol’ and then @kaimac said somethin’ about ‘grrrr’ and then @andybeal said somethin’ about ‘OMG!’ and then @kaimac said somethin’ about ‘Pie’ and then @andybeal said….wait…what??? @kaimac said something about ‘Irish Beer’, ‘potatoes’ and ‘pie’????? Ladies and gentleman, what you have witnessed here is the first culinary trifecta in Twitter Madness history. And then @deanshaw said somethin’ about ‘Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!’

Winner: @kaimac

 

To the Winners – Welcome to the Final Four!

To the Losers – Well, no one likes a loser…scram!

To check out the brackets go to @deanshaw Twitter Madness 2012 Brackets
For more info on the tourney check out my 2012 Twitter Madness Tourney Page