The Answer To A Dilution In Attention

06/02/2011

Check this post The Answer To A Dilution In Attention from Six Pixels of Separation – Marketing and Communications Insights – By Mitch Joel at Twist Image:

How much content is too much content?

I am often asked this question (and many like it). From, "how often should I Blog?", "how often should I tweet?" to "how long should a Podcast be?" and "how much time should I spend on Facebook?" Seth Godin often says, "your mileage may vary," (a line I often use and don’t cite back to the source as much as I should) and, as vague of an answer as that it… it’s the perfect answer. Understanding the pulse of your audience is one of the biggest challenges and hurdles those who produce content have to contend with (more on that here: The Pulse Of Your Content). But, there is a bigger issue that seems to be surfacing in many of the Blogs, Twitter feeds and YouTube channels that I frequent. In a world where each and every day many more new (and smart) individuals start publishing content in text, images, audio and video (and those who already do publish content are getting better and better at it), the cluttered world of content in the online channel gets murkier, and those with any semblance of audience are now fighting for attention from more and more content publishers. And as the bar raises, I’m seeing more and more of these individuals publish more frequently. Much more frequently.

Is this just another play on the quality over quantity debate? 

I don’t think so. Something tells me that if you asked some of these content producers why they are suddenly producing double the amount of content when compared to their usual publishing practice, it does seem like they’re doing this to "out-publish" the competition. You have to remember: it’s hard to topple a recognized Blogger when they jump from one post a day to two posts daily. But, the ultimate question is this:

"Does publishing more content double your audience or just maintain it?… and to what end?"

There are some raw truths: many of the web analytics tools do look at metrics like frequency, links and overall activity, so if you want to maintain a level of clout on these lists and through these services, simply doubling down is a very strategic move… if you can, ultimately, deliver at the same level of quality that was happening before.

Sadly, this doesn’t seem to be the case.

As some of these content producers put out two shorter pieces of content or simply double the amount of content they’re producing, I’m noticing a lack in quality that doesn’t happen fifty percent of the time, but an overall drop in the overall quality of the content… and that’s just sad (and yes, there are also exceptions to this). The only true reason to increase your content production is because you have additional content that is of equal to or greater value than your current publishing pace. Beyond that, because people have less time to pay more attention, doubling your content can wind up being too much for their appetite and hinder your overall brand engagement with them. Meaning, people who are overwhelmed don’t naturally retract to their own pace, they wind up dropping you entirely because they do not like to feel like they are falling behind.

What’s my personal answer?

In recent weeks and through discussions with many of my digital peers who I respect as online publishers, I’ve come to the conclusion that perhaps Six Pixels of Separation should not even be considered "Blog" anymore. In fact, looking back at why I first started Blogging, it was because I needed an outlet for my words. As a journalist, a platform to publish for free to the world – and one where I can choose what to fill the blank screen with – is what made me most excited (and still does to this day). If I look at the pulse of this Blog, I like to publish articles. Pieces of new journalism. Yes, some of them may appear more op-ed than reporting on a news item, but that’s the flow and pulse I have nurtured (it’s my style and it’s my art). I don’t think I post like most Bloggers do. I’m not looking for short/catchy headlines to grab attention. I’m definitely not good at sourcing a royalty free image to grab your attention, and I grapple with writing short and snappy posts even though those are the ones that drive the most traffic. I publish articles. I like publishing articles, and I recognize that those who follow, read and comment below are probably doing a lot more work/thinking than they are in other online spaces where you can get in and out in 250 words or less or graze through some kind of "top ten list" for tips and tricks. In the end, this doesn’t feel like a Blog anymore. It feels much more like a publishing platform for my articles.

It makes me wonder if the answer to a dilution in attention is not increasing the frequency but decreasing it in some instances? What do you think?

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The Life And Times Of A Digital Marketing Strategy

06/02/2011

Check this post The Life And Times Of A Digital Marketing Strategy from Six Pixels of Separation – Marketing and Communications Insights – By Mitch Joel at Twist Image:

Episode #238 of Six Pixels of Separation – The Twist Image Podcast is now live and ready for you to listen to. This is also episode #12.20 of Across The Sound.

Joseph Jaffe is widely regarded as one of the top Marketing Bloggers (Jaffe Juice) and Podcasters (both Jaffe Juice in audio and Jaffe Juice TV in video). He is the author of three excellent books (Life After The 30-Second Spot, Join The Conversation and Flip The Funnel). Along with that, he is currently one of the chiefs over at the Social Media Marketing agency, Powered. A long-time friend (and one of the main inspirations behind the Six Pixels of Separation Blog and Podcast), we’ve decided to hold monthly conversations, debates and back-and-forths that will dive a little deeper into the Digital Marketing and Social Media landscape. This is our twelfth conversation (or, as I like to affectionately call it, Across The Sound 12.20), and this one focuses on agencies and their true abilities to deliver a strong digital marketing strategy (and yes, this includes the ability to engage with Social Media as well). 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 #238.

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Music Has a Structure. Your Presentation Should Too.

06/02/2011

Check this post Music Has a Structure. Your Presentation Should Too. from Duarte Blog:



In celebration of what would have been Mozart’s 255 birthday, here’s a look at the sonata form of Eine kleine Nachtmusik visualized.

The sonata form in classical music has a similar structure to the presentation form. A sonata has standard “rules” to follow; yet each sonata sounds unique. Just as the presentation form is a guide, but it pays to be flexible within the form.

You’ll see a clear beginning (exposition), middle (development), and end (recapitulation) in the sonata form. Also, contrast keeps the sonata interesting, just like in a presentation. Sonatas have tonal, dynamic, and textural contrasts, which are labeled along the left-hand side in this visualization, made by my son, Anthony.

Turn up your speakers and enjoy!

Mozart Sparkline from Duarte Design on Vimeo.

As an extra bonus for all the fans of beautifully visualized classical music, I came across this other example of Dubussy’s Arabesque #1, piano solo. Looks pretty similar to the presentation form once again.


Faith in Your Voice – “The King’s Speech”

06/02/2011

Check this post Faith in Your Voice – “The King’s Speech” from Decker Blog:

Communication, leadership and process. Lessons from a great movie.

The King’s Speech is a film relevant to anyone who speaks for a living. (And that’s all of us.) Don’t miss it. It’s an inspiring communication experience, and will probably win several Academy Awards.

But this isn’t a film review here, it’s a communications oriented blog/insight/piece. If you haven’t seen the movie it won’t give anything away, but hopefully get you to go soon. And if you have already seen it, enjoy.

“You must have faith in your voice!”

That’s my favorite line from speech therapist Lionel Logue (brilliantly played by Geoffrey Rush) as he exhorts the soon to be King of England. And that is the single most important principle that any speech coach can tell their client. The fact is we all need to speak – powerfully – if we are to influence and lead. We must have faith in ourselves. And as we learn from the movie, that is particularly important to King George VI if he is to lead in a time of crisis.

The Power of Faith

  • Leaders need faith, in their mission and their team. As the movie trailer says, ‘Some men are born great, others have greatness thrust upon them.’ The latter was the case for King George VI (powerfully played by Colin Firth – Academy Award winning performance.) And the King did not have faith in himself, his leadership, or in his team.
  • Faith in yourself. From the age of 8, Bertie, the Duke of York was a stammerer. It was probably emotionally based, stemming from his autocratic father King George V, who was fond of yelling “Just get it out!” If Bertie ever had faith in himself he sure lost it when he had to speak. Particularly in saying any word with a “K” sound, like King. His journey in building faith and confidence in himself, with a coach who had faith in him, is the story of the movie. 
  • Faith in your support team. He always had great faith in half of his support team – his encouraging wife Elizabeth (who was later the Queen Mother of Queen Elizabeth II.) But he didn’t have the TRUST that is critical in a coach, the other half of Bertie’s support team. Lionel Logue took unusual steps to build that trust, and the movie dramatizes the true story of how the King, through courage and hard work, developed that trust through a coach who had trust in him. And then he went on to be great.

The Power of the Coach

  • We are flawed. Although some may be born for greatness, no one gets there without a coach. We all have to overcome barriers, blocks and boulders. Any athlete, any executive, any person of greatness. They all have coaches. It is inspiring to watch the deeply handicapped King succeed by allowing Lionel to be the wind under his wings.
  • Relationships are critical. In our programs it is essential that the program leaders and coaches establish a relationship with each participant, or with a CEO in the Platinum Program. The coach must be a friend and peer – as well as the expert who can help with specialized skills. That was Lionel Logue. The trust that developed with the King was critical to the process.
  • Continuous coaching is essential. Logue and the Duke of York kept at it, for years. They became good friends. The Duke of York/King George VI knew he had to keep his coach engaged, and it wouldn’t have happened without the relationship. It was solely due to this long term relationship that the King could ultimately shout, “Because I have a voice!”

The Power of the Process

  • Mechanics and Psychology, Science and Art. I have never seen a film that so brilliantly travels the fine line of logic and emotion in the process of behavior change. It’s not one or the other, but both. It was interesting that Lionel Logue was not ‘academically’ credentialed, but was experientially expert. He studied and applied new methods based on behavioral principles that he found worked for over 30 years.
  • The recording – the Duke had to hear himself before he could believe. In those days there was no video, so Lionel used a gramophone (recording) to ‘show’ reality to the Duke. Then, breakthrough! Just as we now use video in our programs as an essential and pervasive learning tool, so people can see how they really are, not how they think they are, Lionel used audio on the Duke. Seeing (and hearing) is believing. It was dramatic in reel life, and it is dramatic in real life.
  • The Power of the Pause. The ‘pause’ is a simple mechanical behavioral change that is easy to make, when practiced, and is one of the three major communication differentiators we teach. It paid extra dividends for King George. As a stammerer he could even exaggerate the pause to allow time for his mouth to catch up to his mind.
  • Breaking down barriers. Lionel Logue broke down emotional, psychological and social barriers using a variety of processes in his work with the Duke. If he hadn’t, the process wouldn’t have worked. The Duke might not have been King. And the King might not have spoken to inspire England with his leadership as he did. Who knows what the world would have looked like now? Speaking is powerful.

I could go on, and on. But it’s a blog post, not a book. Suffice it to say, see the movie. Have faith in your voice.


Faith in Your Voice – “The King’s Speech”

06/02/2011

Check this post Faith in Your Voice – “The King’s Speech” from Decker Blog:

Communication, leadership and process. Lessons from a great movie.

The King’s Speech is a film relevant to anyone who speaks for a living. (And that’s all of us.) Don’t miss it. It’s an inspiring communication experience, and will probably win several Academy Awards.

But this isn’t a film review here, it’s a communications oriented blog/insight/piece. If you haven’t seen the movie it won’t give anything away, but hopefully get you to go soon. And if you have already seen it, enjoy.

“You must have faith in your voice!”

That’s my favorite line from speech therapist Lionel Logue (brilliantly played by Geoffrey Rush) as he exhorts the soon to be King of England. And that is the single most important principle that any speech coach can tell their client. The fact is we all need to speak – powerfully – if we are to influence and lead. We must have faith in ourselves. And as we learn from the movie, that is particularly important to King George VI if he is to lead in a time of crisis.

The Power of Faith

  • Leaders need faith, in their mission and their team. As the movie trailer says, ‘Some men are born great, others have greatness thrust upon them.’ The latter was the case for King George VI (powerfully played by Colin Firth – Academy Award winning performance.) And the King did not have faith in himself, his leadership, or in his team.
  • Faith in yourself. From the age of 8, Bertie, the Duke of York was a stammerer. It was probably emotionally based, stemming from his autocratic father King George V, who was fond of yelling “Just get it out!” If Bertie ever had faith in himself he sure lost it when he had to speak. Particularly in saying any word with a “K” sound, like King. His journey in building faith and confidence in himself, with a coach who had faith in him, is the story of the movie. 
  • Faith in your support team. He always had great faith in half of his support team – his encouraging wife Elizabeth (who was later the Queen Mother of Queen Elizabeth II.) But he didn’t have the TRUST that is critical in a coach, the other half of Bertie’s support team. Lionel Logue took unusual steps to build that trust, and the movie dramatizes the true story of how the King, through courage and hard work, developed that trust through a coach who had trust in him. And then he went on to be great.

The Power of the Coach

  • We are flawed. Although some may be born for greatness, no one gets there without a coach. We all have to overcome barriers, blocks and boulders. Any athlete, any executive, any person of greatness. They all have coaches. It is inspiring to watch the deeply handicapped King succeed by allowing Lionel to be the wind under his wings.
  • Relationships are critical. In our programs it is essential that the program leaders and coaches establish a relationship with each participant, or with a CEO in the Platinum Program. The coach must be a friend and peer – as well as the expert who can help with specialized skills. That was Lionel Logue. The trust that developed with the King was critical to the process.
  • Continuous coaching is essential. Logue and the Duke of York kept at it, for years. They became good friends. The Duke of York/King George VI knew he had to keep his coach engaged, and it wouldn’t have happened without the relationship. It was solely due to this long term relationship that the King could ultimately shout, “Because I have a voice!”

The Power of the Process

  • Mechanics and Psychology, Science and Art. I have never seen a film that so brilliantly travels the fine line of logic and emotion in the process of behavior change. It’s not one or the other, but both. It was interesting that Lionel Logue was not ‘academically’ credentialed, but was experientially expert. He studied and applied new methods based on behavioral principles that he found worked for over 30 years.
  • The recording – the Duke had to hear himself before he could believe. In those days there was no video, so Lionel used a gramophone (recording) to ‘show’ reality to the Duke. Then, breakthrough! Just as we now use video in our programs as an essential and pervasive learning tool, so people can see how they really are, not how they think they are, Lionel used audio on the Duke. Seeing (and hearing) is believing. It was dramatic in reel life, and it is dramatic in real life.
  • The Power of the Pause. The ‘pause’ is a simple mechanical behavioral change that is easy to make, when practiced, and is one of the three major communication differentiators we teach. It paid extra dividends for King George. As a stammerer he could even exaggerate the pause to allow time for his mouth to catch up to his mind.
  • Breaking down barriers. Lionel Logue broke down emotional, psychological and social barriers using a variety of processes in his work with the Duke. If he hadn’t, the process wouldn’t have worked. The Duke might not have been King. And the King might not have spoken to inspire England with his leadership as he did. Who knows what the world would have looked like now? Speaking is powerful.

I could go on, and on. But it’s a blog post, not a book. Suffice it to say, see the movie. Have faith in your voice.


The role of visual thinking and communication in change management

06/02/2011

Check this post The role of visual thinking and communication in change management from Communication Nation:

Dr. Martin Eppler of the University of St. Gallen interviews me about visual thinking and change.

Yes it’s a bit more formal than I usually get, but I was in Switzerland and they like that kind of thing 🙂


Hagakure: il libro segreto dei Samurai – Il libro di Gennaio 2011

06/02/2011

Check this post Hagakure: il libro segreto dei Samurai – Il libro di Gennaio 2011 from Blog EfficaceMente:

Yamamoto Tsunetomo – Hagakure: il libro segreto dei Samurai.

Si può imparare qualcosa da un temporale. Quando un acquazzone ci sorprende, cerchiamo di non bagnarci affrettando il passo, ma anche tentando di ripararci sotto i cornicioni ci inzuppiamo ugualmente. Se invece, sin dal principio, accettiamo di bagnarci eviteremo ogni incertezza e non per questo ci bagneremo di più. Tale consapevolezza si applica a tutte le cose.

Hagakure (1, 79).

Per diversi giorni sono stato indeciso su quale libro scegliere per il mese di gennaio. L’inizio dell’anno è un periodo spesso carico di significati: nuovi obiettivi, nuove risoluzioni, nuovi cambiamenti.

Dopo un’attenta riflessione ho scelto un libro che a mio avviso rispecchia appieno questo periodo; un libro che non va letto tutto di un fiato per poi essere dimenticato, ma piuttosto un libro che va consultato giorno dopo giorno, una pagina al giorno, magari come primo gesto del mattino.

Per il mese di gennaio ho scelto l’Hagakure: Il libro Segreto dei Samurai di Yamamoto Tsunetomo.

L’autore

Yamamoto Tsunetomo vissuto tra il 1659 ed il 1721 è stato un militare e filosofo giapponese, ma è stato soprattutto un vero e proprio Samurai della prefettura di Saga nella provincia di Hizen, al servizio del Daimyo Mitsushige Nabeshima, al cui servizio era entrato all’età di soli 9 anni.

A vent’anni conobbe prima Tannen, un monaco Zen che aveva lasciato il tempio locale in segno di protesta per la condanna di un altro monaco, e Ishida Ittei, un letterato confuciano consigliere di Nabeshima esiliato per più di 8 anni per essersi opposto alla decisione di un daimyo. Quando il suo patrono morì nel 1700, Tsunetomo ebbe alcuni screzi con il successore di Nabeshima e decise pertanto di prendere i voti buddhisti con il nome Jōchō e di ritirarsi in un eremo sulle montagne.

Ormai vecchio, tra il 1709 e 1716 raccontò i suoi pensieri a un altro samurai, Tsuramoto Tashiro; molti di questi riguardavano il padre e il nonno del suo patrono, il bushidō e la decadenza della casta samurai nel pacifico periodo Edo. Tashiro non pubblicò il contenuto delle conversazioni avute con Tsunetomo che molti anni più tardi, con il nome collettivo di Hagakure (葉隱 o 葉隠, Hagakure, ovvero “All’ombra delle foglie”).

La trama

Pubblicato per la prima volta nel 1906, ma composto due secoli prima, Hagakure è una delle opere più famose e controverse tramandateci dalla letteratura giapponese. Esso racchiude l’antica saggezza dei samurai sotto forma di brevi aforismi. L’autore, Yamamoto Tsunetomo, vissuto in un’epoca di pace e di conseguente decadenza della figura del samurai, si chiuse in un monastero buddhista, dove per sette anni ammaestrò all’antico codice d’onore il giovane Tashiro Tsuramoto. L’allievo trascrisse le conversazioni avute con il maestro e le raccolse negli undici volumi che compongono “Hagakure”, preziosa testimonianza di un pensiero complesso e positivo, ben diverso dallo stereotipo del kamikaze votato all’annullamento di sé ancora vivo nell’immaginario occidentale. La scelta di aforismi operata dalle curatrici di questo volume mira a far conoscere al pubblico italiano l’attualità e l’universalità dell’etica samurai, e vuole essere un invito alla riflessione e uno strumento per la ricerca interiore.

Come già detto, il modo migliore per leggere questo libro è quello di sfogliarlo una pagina al giorno, nella quiete del mattino e riflettere il resto della giornata su quanto letto. Il libro infatti non ha trama, ma è una collezione di vere e proprie perle della cultura samurai.

Perché dovresti leggerlo

Che tu sia appassionato o meno dalla figura del Samurai, gli aforismi contenuti all’interno dell’Hagakure saranno in grado di trasmetterti ogni giorno un’intensa carica di determinazione, motivazione ed energia.

Alcune delle considerazioni contenute nel libro ti appariranno estreme, ma dopo un’attenta riflessione sarai in grado di apprezzarne la profonda saggezza.

Per me, leggere ogni mattina una pagina dell’Hagakure è stata un’enorme fonte di ispirazione per numerosi anni.

Ps. Se il libro dovesse appassionarti, ti consiglio di guardare il film Ghost Dog, inspirato ad un moderno samurai metropolitano guidato dalle antiche lezioni dell’Hagakure.

Ps. Se stai cercando altri libri di crescita personale li puoi trovare nella sezione Libri del Blog EfficaceMente.

Foto tratta da internet

Finito? Perché non…

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