Virtual Greats | Virtual Goods

Submitted by Sam Moore on

Here's a link to Virtual Greats, with a blurb about the company:

Virtual goods represent a $1.5 billion global market. Virtual Greats is the first company to create a platform to bring high-value, copyrighted material into virtual worlds and social networks. We are the world's leading virtual goods sales and distribution system, connecting celebrities, artists and content creators with a new generation of fans through the online trade of likenesses, fashion, catchphrases, and other virtual representations of real-world talent.

These folks came to my attention because of a post on the Millions Of Us blog. I'm quoting this extensively because the link from my reader is returning a 404:

Virtual Greats launches Snoop Dogg/ Tila Tequila Virtual Goods with Rockyou’s Super Pets in Myspace and Facebook
from Millions of Us by Reuben

I am so excited about this news from our sister company Virtual Greats for a number of reasons. First and foremost, it is the first time we’ve extended premium virtual goods into virtual worlds running within the world’s largest social networks.

For those of you not up to speed, Super Pets is a virtual pet experience that allows you to adopt a pet, train it and battle it against your friends’ pets. Within Facebook, Super Pets has 417, 000 monthly Active Users and within Myspace, it has 4.5 million monthly Active Users. One of the challenges brands had in being sucessful in Second Life was that while the monthly active population was large (and the time per user, enormous), there was no good way to get in front of all those users. Well, in Facebook with Superpets we’re now in front of an audience half as large as Second Life, and in Myspace, in front of one 4.5 times bigger than Second Life.

As for what we’re selling, we’re starting simple with items like winter hoodies for your pet that say Snoop’s cathcphrase, “Drop It Like it’s Hot” (you can see one on my avatar below, styled as a raccoon as a nod of the hat to my man Loic LeMeur and his Seesmic Logo.

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So now I'm wondering - is Millions of Us moving away from being a mostly Second Life oriented shop?

LinkedIn's Company Buzz application - see who's saying what

Submitted by Sam Moore on

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Here's a convenient little app from LinkedIn - it watches Twitter and catches tweets referencing keywords associated with your profile (companies, schools, etc.)

Company Buzz is an application that allows you to see what people are saying about companies and topics you care about. Company Buzz uses information from your profile such as companies and schools to find relevant discussions on twitter. Company buzz also shows you how frequently your company or topic has been mentioned and the top words associated with your company and the topic. You may add new topics and customize existing topics with new search terms to get just the results you are interested in.

(Marginally) more info here.

The marketer's attitude

Submitted by Sam Moore on

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Over at Seth Godin's always-insightful blog, there's this great list of attributes essential to a successful marketer (now, how many of these are applicable to the leaders of your enterprise?):

The marketer's attitude

Traditional job requirements: show up, sober. Listen to the boss, lift heavy objects.

Here's what I'd want if I were hiring a marketer:

  • You're relentlessly positive. You can visualize complex projects and imagine alternative possible outcomes. It's one thing to talk about thinking outside the box, it's quite another to have a long history of doing it successfully. You can ride a unicycle, or can read ancient Greek.
  • Show me that you've taken on and completed audacious projects, and run them as the lead, not as a hanger on. I'm interested in whether you've become the best in the world at something, and completely unimpressed that you are good at following instructions (playing Little League baseball is worth far less than organizing a non-profit organization).
  • You have charisma in that you easily engage with strangers and actually enjoy selling ideas to others. You are comfortable with ambiguity, and rarely ask for detail or permission. Test, measure, repeat and go work just fine for you.
  • You like to tell stories and you're good at it. You're good at listening to stories, and using them to change your mind.
  • I'd prefer to hire someone who is largely self-motivated, who finds satisfaction in reaching self-imposed goals, and is willing to regularly raise the bar on those goals.
  • You're intellectually restless. You care enough about new ideas to read plenty of blogs and books, and you're curious enough about your own ideas that you blog or publish your thoughts for others to react to. You're an engaging writer and speaker and you can demonstrate how the right visuals can change your story.
  • And you understand that the system is intertwined, that your actions have side effects and you not only care about them but work to make those side effects good ones.

The cool thing about this list is that it's not dependent on what you were born with or who you know. Or how much you can lift.

Link

45 Drupal Sites Which You May Not Have Known Were Drupal Based | Social CMS Buzz

Submitted by Sam Moore on

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Over at Social CMS Buzz, there's an intriguing list of sites built on Drupal - some of which I wouldn't have guessed (Mission Metallica? Looks like custom Flash all the way to my eyes).
Social CMS Buzz article

Here's a link to Drupal founder Dries Buytaert's more extensive - and more informative - list.

Barcode Scanner Apps for Android - price check in shopper's hands?

Submitted by Sam Moore on

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AppVee has video reviews of two new apps for Google's Android phone platform - bar code scanners that use your phone's camera for image capture. (see YouTube links at bottom).
From MIT's Ad Lab article:

These applications seem to be among the few with one or two natural business models built into them from the start. Placing contextual recommendations next to price look-up results is one; powering branded wishlists and registries is another.

MIT Ad Lab article about the apps

Previous MIT Ad Lab article about Instant price Checking at retail

YouTube videos:


URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t2zMPbVFIYE



URL: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IZkxkvWq9zE

How to Captivate an Audience

Submitted by Sam Moore on

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Guy Kawasaki has an interview with Nancy Duarte here.

Excerpt:

Question: Why do most presentations suck?

Answer: Most presentations suck because:

  • The presenter has not given the audience any idea why they are there or what the content means to them; messages are disorganized and there’s no unifying story line.
  • The presenter uses the slides as a document or teleprompter and reads their slides with his/her back to the audience. This makes the audience feel like the presenter is slow or not very smart.
  • The presenter is not passionate or inspired and has not connected to the audience in a uniquely human way.

Did you notice that presentations suck solely because of the presenter? Great speakers like you can get by without much visual support. Emotive qualities are the greatest assets in a live performance.


Guy's Article

Duarte Design

Soon, Your Mayonnaise Label May Have Sight, Sound, Video

Submitted by Sam Moore on

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Last month Esquire dropped the first magazine cover to incorporate e-ink technology. While the creative was underwhelming, the execution sure generated a lot of buzz.

Looks like in-store POP is next, followed one presumes by packaging (I'm betting on cereal boxes, but we'll see).

Quote:

Henkel's Right Guard is testing use of printed electronics to power flashing lights in corrugated in-store displays at Walgreens stores in the Chicago area, a first step for a technology from Arizona start-up company Nth Degree that could eventually bring low-cost streaming video to printed displays, packaging, direct mail or magazine inserts.


Link

Case Study: Burger King's Advergames

Submitted by Sam Moore on

MIT Advertising Lab has interesting commentary on Burger King's use of video games. Here's a quote:

Burger King ... made the decision to sell the games at $3.99, an extremely low price for disc-based (as opposed to downloadable) Xbox games but, as it turned out, a potentially much better price than “free.”
By choosing to charge even a small sum, Burger King seems to have sent a message to consumers that its games had real value, unlike other advergames they might have played and been disappointed by in the past. Burger King further supported the games with a strong marketing campaign that included advertisements shown during Saturday Night Live and during NFL games. All this sent a very clear message to consumers: “There is something of value waiting for you at Burger King.”

This is actually one of a series of articles abstracting the book Changing the Game: How Video Games Are Transforming the Future of Business

MIT AdLab article Part 1
Part 2
Part 3

Flash-based clipboard hijack exploit

Submitted by Sam Moore on

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Here's a post on Flash banner ads that hijack your clipboard, and won't let go until you've restarted your browser (or your OS, depending on who's talking...): http://blogs.zdnet.com/security/?p=1733

And here's the thread on Apple's support boards - seems the first user to publicize this was on a Mac:
http://discussions.apple.com/thread.jspa?messageID=7768848

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