Sunday Herald Digital Futures Debate: ‘Transsexual bodybuilders living a lie’

Scotland needs to change its business culture to embrace risk, encourage ideas and get the most from its workers, according to the second of the Sunday Herald debates on the future of digital in Scotland.

Gordon Thomson, Operations Director of Cisco Scotland and Ireland, saw a gap between invention and sales. He said that there was a need for collaboration between different companies and bodies to bridge this gap.

Raymond O’Hare, Regional Direcotr of Microsoft Scotland, emphasised that while the climate seemed right for innovation to flourish , it seemed like something was missing. He felt there was a need to intensively push those with ideas.

Then Steven Thurlow, Technical Director of Graham Technology, called for a greater appreciation of the power of risk in innovation, using the example of the 39 products that failed before WD40 became a success.

Taking a different tack, Stewart Kirkpatrick, Content Marketing Director of w00tonomy (yay!), said that in order to reach customers all companies, organisations and public bodies had to understand that anyone trying to attract attention on the web was a content publisher because of the nature of the online landscape. Scotland had failed in this respect, he claimed, adding that Scottish organisations and companies (even ones dealing in content) had yet to produce truly great online properties that made effective use of targeted content and the online innovations that engage the user/customer. (An honourable exception is Rockstar North, which produces the insanely successful Grand Theft Auto games.)

All four speakers all emphasised that Scotland needed a change in culture to embrace innovation – a point that was also raised from the floor, along with observations about the need to involve more young people in the debate.

The event was fronted by hyperenergetc ringmaster Iain S Bruce, who characterised the format as being like Kilroy, hence his frequent references to “transsexual bodybuilders living a lie“. However, his mind may have been wandering to the trip to Amsterdam he was going to embark on immediately after the debate ended.

(In terms on “content people”, the event could have been better attended. But it was good to see Alistair Brown, who – given his record at scotsman.com – is about to do exciting things at STV and Shaun Milne, whose knowledge about journalism and digital media far outweighs his understanding of football.)

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Sunday Herald Digital Futures Debate: ‘Transsexual bodybuilders living a lie’

Scotland needs to change its business culture to embrace risk, encourage ideas and get the most from its workers, according to the second of the Sunday Herald debates on the future of digital in Scotland.

Gordon Thomson, Operations Director of Cisco Scotland and Ireland, saw a gap between invention and sales. He said that there was a need for collaboration between different companies and bodies to bridge this gap.

Raymond O’Hare, Regional Direcotr of Microsoft Scotland, emphasised that while the climate seemed right for innovation to flourish , it seemed like something was missing. He felt there was a need to intensively push those with ideas.

Then Steven Thurlow, Technical Director of Graham Technology, called for a greater appreciation of the power of risk in innovation, using the example of the 39 products that failed before WD40 became a success.

Taking a different tack, Stewart Kirkpatrick, Content Marketing Director of w00tonomy (yay!), said that in order to reach customers all companies, organisations and public bodies had to understand that anyone trying to attract attention on the web was a content publisher because of the nature of the online landscape. Scotland had failed in this respect, he claimed, adding that Scottish organisations and companies (even ones dealing in content) had yet to produce truly great online properties that made effective use of targeted content and the online innovations that engage the user/customer. (An honourable exception is Rockstar North, which produces the insanely successful Grand Theft Auto games.)

All four speakers all emphasised that Scotland needed a change in culture to embrace innovation – a point that was also raised from the floor, along with observations about the need to involve more young people in the debate.

The event was fronted by hyperenergetc ringmaster Iain S Bruce, who characterised the format as being like Kilroy, hence his frequent references to “transsexual bodybuilders living a lie“. However, his mind may have been wandering to the trip to Amsterdam he was going to embark on immediately after the debate ended.

(In terms on “content people”, the event could have been better attended. But it was good to see Alistair Brown, who – given his record at scotsman.com – is about to do exciting things at STV and Shaun Milne, whose knowledge about journalism and digital media far outweighs his understanding of football.)

Content = prosperity

You might be thinking, what a lot of w00t. These w00tonomers are w00ting, whittering, even twittering. Where’s the beef?

Well, ok – follow the money!

Businesses prepare to spend nearly $5 billion by 2013 on social networking tools, according to Forrester research. Social networks will attract the greatest levels of investment.

The old monolithic marketing models are rusting like an old Trabant. For social networks you need marketable content: content to interest, amuse, intrigue, empower your audience – and yourselves.

w00tonomy speaks!

David Petherick has done an interview with our very own Tony Purcell. In it you can hear Tony’s soothing Irish brogue explain how our content marketing approach increases traffic for our clients online messages. David has a number of other very interesting interviews, including one with Werner Vogels (or is it Verner Wogels) of Amazon.

Listen in, and find out a little more about content marketing in the social media sphere.

w00tonomy director relentlessly delivers nauseating self promotion

Stewart Kirkpatrick, our Content Marketing Director, has induced a bout of vomiting at w00tonomy with this self-serving communique:

“I have been elected to the New Media Industry Council of the National Union of Journalists (in a jobshare with Euan Williamson of Imagineering). Like nearly every large body, the NUJ has struggled with what the web means for today and tomorrow. I am delighted to have this opportunity to help guide its thinking.”

Stewart will also be speaking at the Sunday Herald’s Shaping Scotland’s Digital Future event – at 9am on 24 April at The Teacher Building, St Enoch Square, Glasgow – where he will be tarred and feathered by the rest of w00tonomy if he comes out with anything similar in tone to the above statement.

RIP the page view: not so sadly missed

Those who have worked in evaluating the success of online marketing campaigns will not be surprised to hear of the death of the page view – after a long illness.

After its final death throes, the page view’s demise was confirmed by Nielsen/NetRatings in an announcement in July 2007, where it said that it was no longer using the page impression as the primary metric for comparing websites. Culprits in the shuffling off of the PV’s mortal coil include:

  • The increasing use of AJAX which can refresh content without a page reload
  • The increasing use of video.

Nielsen believes that these trends will continue with technology supporting more in-page viewing. This has led to them to use time on site as the comparison metric since it at least demonstrates the value to the customer of on-site content.

The reality is that this reflects a deeper shift in the world of online measurement, as analysts try to get to grips with the impact of Web 2.0 technology such as blogging, user generated content, social networks and widgets. Page views clearly do not give insight into the level of audience engagement and although time on site is a step in the right direction, we don’t believe you can rely on it as a single site metric.

What you want to know is whether your content engaged with the audience or not. No one single metric will ever satisfy that question. Comparison decisions will be hard particularly for advertisers. New metrics must be considered such as the number of ratings, number of comments, which parts of videos people watched/shared. And to give you a fuller picture of your audience motives qualitative collection through surveys is also required to support the decision making process.

Whichever way Web Analytics 2.0 goes certain rules will still apply

  • It’s about intelligence not data
  • The 10/90 rule still applies
  • Good marketing is about using the insight tools provide us to drive decisions and actions that effect business bottom lines
  • And finally: You live or die by the quality of your content. No matter what business you are in you are in the content business.

Analytics guru on intelligence, not numbers

Analytics guru Avinash Kaushik describes how companies large and small can get the most value from web analytics. And it is all about intelligence rather than rows and rows of numbers.