Archive for the ‘Events’ Category
I find it entertaining how at every conference, I manage to come home with BAGS full of Online Marketing” SWAG” (Stuff We All Get). Well this time around, in spirit of the elections, I decided to rate all of the SWAG and name a “BEST SWAG AT AD:TECH”. It’s a tough year full of yoyo’s, usb lights, wireless mice and cigars! The winners will be chosen based on the following criteria: Longevity, Practicality, Popularity and Design!
This list will exclude notebooks, pens, gum, sticker, and squishee balls …’cause they suck! Below is a list of the best SWAG and their companies:
- AdManage, Yellow Messenger Bag
- Traffic Marketplace, Tubed Vodka Shots and Thermometer
- Digital Element, Mini BBall Hoop
- Hydra, Metro Trucker Hat
- Zedo, Ski Beanie/Snow Hat
- >ifbyphone, LED YoYo’s and a Cell Phone Holder
- Internet Advertising Group (IAG), USB Laptop Light
- AdOn | Network, Global Clock
- Media Whiz, Plush Slippers
- EliteCommission, Fresh Rolled Cigars, Clippers and Lighters
- Affiliate.com, T-Shirts
- Akamai, Tshirts formed into cool shapes
- EmailDirect, Hilarious TShirts
- interClick, Foam Football
- LinkTrust, Sturdy Messenger Bag/Laptop Case
- Epic Advertising, Bottle Opener
- Batanga, iPod external Speakers
- Tatto Media, USB Wireless Mouse
AND THE WINNER’S ARE:
1st Place – LinkTrust, Sturdy Messenger Bag/Laptop Case
- This is the bag on the right of the picture on top (and NOT the yellow one). A well built product, usable compartments and a padded laptop section, this item was hard to come by. The entire show, people kept asking me “where did you get that bag?” Even my boss was a little jealous. This one takes the cake!
2nd Place – EliteCommission, Fresh Rolled Cigars, Clippers and Lighters
- Originally I was considering giving this 1st place, but there was no practicality here. It was definitely popular and this booth definitely got the most buzz! Also, it’s funny to note the Chief Marketing Officer who decided on the cigars idea is only 16-years-old! And the other staff members were also under age: Rishab Verma (CSO) is 17 and Joe Helewa (Sr. AM) is 16. And the best part? Their booth ended up having a line around the corner for the first few hours of Ad:Tech on Monday. A little ironic that 3 members of their staff aren’t legally allowed to touch their own SWAG! I found an interview with Joshua Kopac: 16-year-old Internet Marketer, which is worth reading. He’s definitely a sharp kid and the company looks like it is doing quite well. Worth keeping an eye on!
3rd Place – Tatto Media, USB Wireless Mouse
- Practically speaking, a wireless mouse makes a great addition to both your laptop and desktop. I was also very surprised to see there was no shortage in supply. I was able to snag 4 of them, without even being questioned. They earned this one!
Article By: Joshua ‘The Red’ Russak (Red@aclion.com)
It is very important to stay up to date on local events if you’re in the Online Marketing space. One of my first jobs since my promotion at AC Lion was to create a targetted, detailed list of new york local and west-coast based events. These sites serve as potential advertising opportunities for events we hosted as well. Here are the best places to source for events if you’re in the Online Marketing & Advertising space:
#1: Gary’s Guide: GarysGuide.org
Garysguide is the #1 Events Calendar for Technology & New Media professionals. Their calendar is a comprehensive edited list of all upcoming events related to technology, web 2.0, social media, online advertising & marketing, software, hardware, digital video, new media, entrepreneurship, startups and much much more. They are currently live in 13 of the top tech hubs in the country including New York, Boston, Washington DC, Chicago, Los Angeles, Austin, San Diego, Denver, Portland, Seattle, Toronto, Las Vegas and the San Francisco Bay Area.
#2: Meetups: Meetup.com
Meetup.com is the world’s largest network of local groups. Meetup makes it easy for anyone to organize a local group or find one of the thousands already meeting up face-to-face. For Online Marketers, there are tons of tech related meetup groups including Online Video, Bloggers, SEO, SEM, Search, Buzz Marketing, Sales Executives, VC Elevator Pitch Groups, etc. They are loads of fun and are usually followed up with a drink.
#3: BtoB Magazine: BtoBOnline Events Calendar
BtoB is the magazine for marketing strategists, Published monthly by Crain Communications Inc. With 45,000+ subscribers, they also provide a detailed list of b2b related events. They currently hold events in New York, Chicago, Boston, and San Francisco. You can aslo opt-in for e-mail notification of future BtoBevents, by e-mailing BtoBevents@crain.com.
#4: MediaPost:Events Listing and Public Directory of Industry Events
A. Events Listing – A list of MediaPost shows in which you will find detailed information on each of their signature events. And don’t forget, as a MediaPost member, you are entitled to a special discounted rate to attend.
B. Public Directory of Industry Events – This is a publically submitted comprehensive calendar of upcoming events around the country. Florida to New York, Chicago to LA, Portland to Seattle…this listing has it all.
#5:Advertising Age (aka: AdAge): Industry Events
Advertising Age (aka: AdAge) is the leading global source of news, intelligence and conversation for marketing and media communities. They host their own events and provide a comprehensive calendar of Industry Events in LA, NYC, Chicago and more.
…The best way to stay on top of these events is by subscribing to their e-mail updates and event RSS feeds. One way that works for me that I use on my personal web site’s events calendar, is to create a Google Calendar and combine all your events RSS feeds into one big mashup. That way you can monitor every event in one AJAX driven and clean looking window.
Good luck and I look forward to seeing you at upcoming events!
Article By: Joshua ‘The Red’ Russak (Red@aclion.com)
I recently attended the Affiliate Summit Social Media Conference in NYC. It took place last Sunday, October 5th at Baruch College. It was a rather small venue compared the Affiliate Summit East in Boston, but their goal was clear: “Social Media Success!” And to be honest, I picked up mixed reviews from the affiliates in the crowd.
The summit started off with Keynote speaker, Don Crowther, Social Media and Blogging Expert. His advice was very effective for Experienced and Beginners alike. In reference to Social Media Marketing: “If you do it wrong in this business, it can be a huge dissadvantage!” He went on to bring quite a few surprising key facts: Facebook almost equals the amount of Google pageviews, Myspace actually got more page views than google last year, YouTube almost doubled Google! Then he went on to discuss strategy. I wasn’t too happy to hear his opinion that Movable Type Publishing was better than WordPress because it had better search engine rankings. When asked why? “B/c it’s paid for”. Unlike WordPress, you pay for MTP which means better quality service. Well – according to everything else he was telling the audience – if you apply these social media tips, it won’t matter which platform you use! “You don’t have to be a rocket scientist, just do it appropriately!” (~Don)
He ran a very interesting test. He took 5,000 of the top terms in Google (Money terms worth 50 cents or more for the #2 spot) and he found that “18% of all first page results were social media – 2 sites per page!” And he showed us quite a few examples where the social media site outranked the actual company. From this he derived that all a company needs is GOOD SEM on one side and SOCIAL MEDIA MARKETING on the other. And here are the tools he referenced: Squidoo, HubPages, WetPaint, Twitter, StomperNet.com, Google Keyword Tool, Last.Fm, Digg, and many more (MANY MORE!). As for Video, you should be doing Video Reviews, Video Blogs, etc. . He referred the audience to Camtasia and Screenflow. It’s the software you use to record your Desktop. Very applicable for training, powerpoints, presentations, etc. Also, bringing in Guest’s for interviewing creates amazing content. Then promote it in one of 2 ways. You CAN go to each video site and upload each video individually or use TubeMogul to do it all in one shot and manage your trafic.
One final warning from Dan. “Follow the Best-Practices: DO NOT USE AUTO-BOOKMARKERS, ONLY BOOKMARK YOUR A+ BEST STUFF, SUBMIT OTHER PEOPLE’S STUFF (6:1 ratio), DON’T COPY AND PASTE THE SAME DESCRIPTIONS”.
In my opinion, I could have easily left at this point feeling accomplished. But there was no way I was going to miss the next session: “Gain Friend and Infuence, With Video – Learn how to leverage video to increase brand engagement, time spent on site, and page views. Explore the tools and techniques to use when testing out video” Totally worth it. The session involved the following:
- Jim Kukral, Owner, ScratchBack.com (Moderator)
- Steve Rosenbaum, CEO and Founder, Magnify.net
- Melissa Salas, Director of Marketing, Buy.com
Not as valuable for me as the first session, but the audience remained hooked and interested as I looked around the room. I particularly enjoyed Melissa’s participation. I knew I recognized her. Besides acting as Director of Marketing for Buy.com, she is also Co-Host of the TV show, BuyTV, that airs weekly on G4. And I’ve seen Steve Rosenbaum at quite a few local events including the most recent Jeff Pulver Breakfast. To properly cover this one, I took down quite a few valuable quotes:
- Steve: “I think you’ll see longer videos as time goes on”
- Steve: “The advantage of short = you leave the audience wanting more”
- Melissa: “If it’s not Rich Media, it’s not interesting!”
- Steve: “There’s an enourmous amount of money out to find quality pre-roll!”
- Steve: “YouTube is a failed Social Network!”
Yea…as you can see, they covered quite a few areas of video. And it was worth getting a picture in with Melissa as you can see in the flickr SlideShow at the top of this post. At this point there was a break for lunch and networking. I met up with Jim Kukral and found that to be quite valuable. He was one of the main reasons I took my blog in a new direction (as you’ll start to see in the coming weeks).
The sessions I attended after lunch included:
- Michael Jenkins, CEO/Founder, MarketLeverage
- Michael Jenkins, CEO/Founder, MarketLeverage
- James Keating, VP of Marketing, ShopWiki
- Jivan Manhas, President, Advaliant, a Division of MediaTrust
- Larry Bailin, CEO, Single Throw Internet Marketing
- Shashi Bellamkonda, Social Media Swami, Network Solutions
- Jay Berkowitz, CEO, Ten Golden Rules
…but at that point, the room was starting to clear out! I mean COME ONNNN, it was a Sunday! Half of the crowd was probably hung over form the night before. All I can say was that from what I attended, it was well worth it in terms of quality training and networking. Check out their next event in Vegas if you can make it!
Web2.0 Expo took place at the Javits Center September 16th-19th and came off as a great success for many of the attendees – myself included! One of the most valuable sessions took place on Thursday: “Starting Up in Silcon Alley”. I only registered for the Expo Hall, but was lucky enough to find my way in using some of my usual event tactics (hint: involves a scanner and photoshop).
The topic covered an important question for VC’s and Tech Entrepenuer’s alike: Where to start up? For the vast majority of the online world, when you hear Silicon Valley you think the heart of everything tech in the US all located in Northern California. But lately entreprenuers, VC’s and tech-startups are beginning to find value in areas outside of NoCal. One Silcon in particalur, Silicon Alley, “is a nickname for an area with a concentration of Internet and new media companies in Manhattan, New York City. Originally, the term referred to the cluster of such companies extending from the Flatiron District down to SoHo and TriBeCa, but as the location of these companies spread out, it became a general term referring to the dot com industry in New York City as a whole” (Wikipedia). And many VC’s and entreprenuer’s alike are beginning to see a lot of value in New York City. This was the topic of discussion for the panel which consisted of….
-Nate Westheimer, BricaBox Founder (Panel Moderator)
-Kevin Ryan, CEO & Co-Founder of AlleyCorp
-Karin Klein, Vice President of Softbank Capital
-David S. Rose, Principal of Rose Tech Ventures
It was a legitimate topic as there are many successful start ups in NYC Silicon Alley. “A couple of years after the internet bust, Silicon Alley began making its comeback with the help of NY Tech meetup and NextNY. Since 2003 Silicon Alley has seen a steady growth in the number of start-ups. As of 2007 Google’s second largest office is located in New York as well as major online advertising and media companies such as Eyeblaster, DoubleClick, Roo and meetup.com” (Wikipedia).
Nate moderated the event and for about a 1/2 hour, conducting a Q&A style panel allowing the audience to ask questions as well (as you’ll see). To best cover this event, here’s a taste of what went on…
Nate: What does it mean to start up in Silicon Alley?
- Kevin: “Great management talent in NY, [...] We still have an undeveloped VC infrastructure…a real lagger in terms of development. [...] I’m extremely Bullish! 10 years from now we’ll stil be smaller than Silicon Valley, but the gap is closing in day by day!”
- Karin: “We are finding many compelling startups in NY. We have the building blocks key resources in NY – customers, partners and financiers. [...] 3 examples of success: BuddyMedia, Thumbplay and Paltalk.”
- David: “This is a very good time to start a company in NYC. The world is changing…what we don’t understand is how rapidly it is changing! The cost of a startup keep decreasing – In 1988 $20million to $2million to $200,000 during Nuclear Winter to now $20,000! You now have the resources!”
Nate: Do you have an “only in New York” story?
- Kevin: “Being near the advertising community was an enormous advantage. So you have to be here!”
Nate: Do/would you ever request anyone that you invested in to come to New York?
- Karin: “Associated Content was based in Colorado, and they needed to be closer to advertisers. Also, retention of teams is easier.”
- David: “Angel investors offer more than just $$money$$. We offer our offices, incites, and much much more. So it’s a benefit for them to be here.”
- Kevin: “Staffing opportunity is definitely a plus. Also, to say Real Estate here is more expensive makes no sense. We determined our costs were $5,000 per person per year at DoubleClick and compared to other cities that cost only $1,000 less, that’s not so significant.”
Nate: Where do you see things going in Silicon Alley?
- Kevin: “Rate of growth is going to slow down. It doesn’t have to do with the economy. It’s just that the rate-of-change is slowing down”
- David: “I challenge that…the rate-of-change is accelerating. Anyone who says they know where the world is going is FULL OF SH*T!”
- Karin: “The entrepreneur’s now are really committed and have strong conviction. I’d much rather back someone in this environment.”
- Kevin: “Here’s some great advice for the future: Start when the wave starts! [...] If you want to start video now, it might be a little late.”
- David: “248 Venture Backed IPOs in ’99…0 Venture-Backed IPOs in Q2 2008?.” <-[A statistic I heard just a week earlier at the E-Marketing Breakfast at the Harvard Club NYC, found in the article “The Future of Search” over a bagel ‘n cream cheese!]
…at this point Adeo Ressi, Founding Member and CEO for TheFunded.com challenged the panel. With a smile on his face, he walked up to the audience mic and, quoting him as accurately as possible, he said…
- Adeo Ressi: “Silicon Valley kicks New York’s BUTT! There is 10x everything in the Valley!”
Adeo was an early pioneer in the growth of the World Wide Web and has been a successful entrepenuer over and over (GameTrust Inc, Total New York, etc.) He started his company, TheFunded.com started in NYC, but he moved it to Silicon Valley and off of that he made many good points. To further support him, “despite the development of other high-tech economic centers throughout the United States, Silicon Valley continues to be the leading high-tech hub because of its large number of engineers and venture capitalists” (Wikipedia) It definitely stirred up the panel and it was all in good fun, but at the same a reality check. David obviously was the first to challenge him and the audience definitely enjoyed the panels overal reaction.
After the conference, I took my picture with the panel (as seen at the beginning of this blog-most), then everyone made their way upstairs for a Lunch Session headed up by David Rose. It was very personable and David really pumped up the audience in terms of all the stages of starting up (concepts, funding, etc). A lot of individuals there wanted to pitch David which is why he continuously made this point over and over: “Only 1.32% of all Companies that pitch VC’s get funding.” I’m not sure if he was referring to here in NYC, or in the US, but either way that is a statistic you should NOT ignore as an entrepreneur.
David instructed entrepreneurs to create a working product, get users/consumers, show some profitability and then come to the VC’s! He also made another great point saying that “The most important person in the management team is the entrepreneur. We’d rather bet on a jockey than the horse!”
Afterward, there was another chance for Q&A and I had the chance to pop out my question…
Red: Kevin, you mentioned a great tip: Start when the wave starts! What do you see as the next big wave?
The whole team responded, but it was hard to pinpoint a single response. Kevin said once again that things were slowing down and there’s no wave at this moment. He also mentioned “mobile” but he was a skeptic with the iPhone. David obviously challenged him saying this space was “accelerating, but at a granule level.” Karin jumped in to point out that for “Video & Social Media, there was still good money to be made. [People just need to start] innovating these areas.”
Either way, they spent a good 10 minutes covering that topic before moving on. It’s good to see David and Kevin go head to head. I don’t know about the rest of the audience, but I was really fired up to be in the same room as 4 successful entrepreneurs and to actually engage in a discussion with them.
Web2.0 Expo was a success ! Keep on top of my calendar because there are still a few good events ahead in Q4 of 2008. And remember…Keep an eye for the “Red-Hair” at future events!
To end off here is a fun fact for you: For a list of other places with the “Silicon” name: Click Here.
Social Ad Summit was last week and it was a great event. Hats off to Nick ONeil and company for running a classy event in its initial iteration. The venue was great, the food was superb! Honestly the PM cocktail was replete with open bar great sushi, lamb, huge cheese display, it was really off the hook! But to more critical initiatives it was the constancy of the audience and energy that was most notable. EVERYONE was working on something exciting. Dynamism was the word for the day and the audience was very very collaborative. As a recruiter we are always looking to gain a pulse on the market and try to be a few steps ahead of it. I, personally, was most struck by metrics behind the network models leveraging social environments for impressions on branding campaigns, or lead acquisition via virtual cash. As always, most San Fran based companies recognize that they need a sales presence here in NYC and that agencies are the last link to advertising dollars. OK nothing new there but I am wondering if there are more marketer direct opportunities for more traditional interactive platforms then are available to newer social platforms.
It was a great show – I shot a note to Nick O’Neil afterward thanking/congratulating him and strongly suggesting he keep it just at small (300 pp) next year.
Here I am chatting with Brian August of Plentitude. He is at the very beginning of what could be a heck of a ride – Plentitude has a very ambitious plan!
Off to more follow – up
It’s a fact, I am “obsessed” with Online Marketing Expo/Conference SWAG. Some are ashamed, other makes fun, but quoting Tech Crunch Article, TechCrunch50 swag bag: Room for improvement “there’s nothing wrong with a good tchotchke, and this stuff is kind of fun to give out to kids, and useful if you need clothes for changing the oil or painting a room”.
Now for all of you who do not know what SWAG is let me inform you. Not to be confused with a “cheap purchase during your high-school days” SWAG, as defined by UrbanDictionary.com: “Stuff/Sh*t We All Get – Relating to the trade show convention industry, where exhibitors hand out “free stuff” to visitors. Most of the time these items are purely promotional materials, and are fairly worthless. ie. pencils, mugs, and mouse pads. [...] SWAG always has the company name, logo, slogan, product, service, and contact information clearly printed somewhere on the item/s. Some convention goers have made a hobby of collecting as much swag as possible, and compete with others at the show.”
As Used in Conversation…
-”The online gaming booth is handing out swag demo disks.”
-”That beats my swag bag of stationary!”
Awards: Recognition merchandise given to acclaim superior performance or service. Awards should be gifted in a way that publicly acknowledges the achievement.
Business Gifts: Merchandise given by a company to its employees, customers or any person with whom it wants to enhance a relationship. Business gifts are given in goodwill without obligation to or from the recipient.
Commemoratives: Merchandise used to mark a ceremony, anniversary, event or milestone.
Incentives and Premiums: Something the recipient can’t buy at any price, but must take some specific action to obtain: such as making a purchase, exceeding a sales quota or accomplishing specific company goals. Popular examples are: Safety Incentives, Wellness Incentives, Dealer Incentives, Direct Premiums, Referral Premiums and Sales Incentives. Incentive programs typically involve gifts given in sequence to keep people interested and involved in the program.
Lumpy Mail: Also known as a dimensional mail, lumpy mail is a promotional product sent via direct mail. Lumpy mail should be creatively designed to cut through the clutter and deliver a specific marketing message to a specific target audience.
Prizes: Reward given to winner in a contest, sweepstakes or lottery. Prizes may be used as bait to generate leads, opt-ins for future communication or answers to a survey. Technology gifts are popular prizes.
Promotional Giveaway: Direct premium given free of charge or obligation to generate awareness and/or goodwill. For maximum effectiveness the item should be useful or meaningful to the recipient and also tie in with the goals and objectives of the advertiser.
Traffic Builder: A promotional product designed to boost traffic at a retail store or booth at a trade show/job fair. Items should have lasting value to the recipient so the message is carried long after the event is over.
Gotham Media Ventures recently hosted “Digital Media, Advertising: The E-Marketing Breakfast“, sponsored by Gridley and Company LLC, one event of a series of breakfasts that will take place over the next few weeks/months. The topic of this breakfast was laoded one – Searching for Dollars: The Future of Search Opportunities and Investment. The venue – Harvard Club of NY….
…at this point it becomes clear: Not a casual event! Unfortunately I didn’t think to wear a suit. I came expecting marketing executives and ended up finding a mixed, well-dressed crowd of VC’s, AE’s, CEO’s and SEM Guru’s. I was just happy I didn’t go with the Pink Polo. Either way, it was definitely a step up from the casual networking and entrepreneur events I’m used to attending. And I’m happy to say the panel was exceptional.
Moderating the event was Stan Sandberg, Principal at Gridley & Company LLC, the events sponsor. The panelists were as follows:
Stan began his introduction with a lengthy happy birthday wish to search giant Google, though I’m not sure today was the right day as I discussed in my previous article Google’s 10th Birthday! (But what day?). He mentioned 3 solid facts: Internet Marketing is growing fast (22.8%), Search is the biggest and fastest growing sector, and most shockingly in “99 was thr cup of the .com boom…99 was the breakout year. 248 IPOs in 99…0 Venture-Backed IPOs in Q2 2008″, (a point continuously repeated during Web2.0 Expo Panel “Starting up in Silicon Alley”, which I will blog about tomorrow).
On that note, the panel began. There were many great points made covering a number of important areas in Online Marketing. To get them all out, I will format the rest in Q&A form:
Stan: Your thoughts on the future of Search & Search Budgets?
- Aimee: “Much longer investments in strategic planning.”
- Adam: “A lot of growth in analytics in order to create value.”
- Sarah: “There will always be more money in search because it is measurable.”
- Kevin: “Data-mining is absolutely mission critical.”
Stan: Role of the Search Agency today?
- Aimee: “There is a change in process of how agencies are approaching companies.”
- Adam: “Definitely interested in brand building with companies that have offline” (mentioning the possibility of partnering up with the offline agency the company chooses.
- Sarah: “A lot more contingent on the marketer and collaborative efforts…collective brainstorming.”
- Kevin: “The reality is – it is driven by the client. Agencies are driven by the P&L in the end of the day…the client has to drive it.”
Stan: What are you seeing in terms of keyword trends and ROI?
- Kevin: “Two issues -> Minimum click costs continue to increase & media channels are deciding whether or not your site is worthy and that is a BIG problem.
Stan: Google = Better Results…your thoughts?
- Kevin: “70% of search in the US is Google…90% in Western Europe”. Keep in mind geo-location.
- Aimee: “Be aware of the other search engines and how they work. [...] Google drives volume, but other sites can drive better conversions.”
- Adam: “The volume is on Google. It has been a disappointing competition to watch…I am hoping somebody can compete with Google.”
- Kevin: “Google Properties will eventual equal Government Intervention.” In reference to Chrome, “Google terms & conditions are crap”, but he finished off by saying “…maybe we would be better of joining Google.”
Stan: Innovation – Where will it come from?
- Kevin: “Cuil was the worst piece of sh*t search engine. What we saw at the end of that was VCs are now questioning ex-google employees. The press is second guessing the ex-googlers as well. [...] The same journalists who said Cuil was big, also say Yahoo is going down”
- Aimee: “Digital out of home is going to be huge…mobile, video online…also marketing tools”
- Adam: “We need to use 3rd party analytics companies in order to make sense of it all”.
- Sarah: “Google – they got the eyeballs”
- Sarah: “There are cases where search makes no-sense!“
- Aimee: “1+1=3″
- Kevin: “We have to be careful how we use the word Study today” (referring to stats and case-studies).
- Adam: The trend and timelines is as follows “Offline -> Website -> Mobile & E-mail”.
The conference ended on a great note, and overall I feel the crowd was pleased.
Article By: Joshua ‘The Red’ Russak (Red@aclion.com)
Web2.0 Expo was fully packed with good swag, give aways and presentations…ALL FOR THE SAKE OF LEAD-GEN! Each booth would trade SWAG for a simple bar-code scan so they could follow up with you after the show. I particularly enjoyed Axiom Software Inc’s approach to lead-gen. Their booth offered a Flip video camera if you entered your contact info and explained “How has Web2.0 Expo effected your business?”
Here’s AC Lions very own Managing Director, Dan Goldsmith, offering his opinion….
For those of you looking for a group of entrepreneurs who help each other launch successful tech ventures, then Ultra Light Startups (TM) is the place to be. The group was founded by Graham Lawlor in New York City, with contributors and viewers all over the world. Ultra Light Startups meets on the first Thursday of every month, hosted by Rose Technology Ventures in New York.
last week I attended the largest meetup in Ultra Light history with 40+ attending. The panel discussion of the night – “Monetization through Online Advertising” might have been the reason for the size of the crowd. As you’ll see from the presenters bios (included below), the speakers at this event may have contributed to those numbers as well.
The night started off with “Introductions by elevator pitch”, where everyone in attendance participated in pitching their companies in 60 seconds or less. Companies ranging in all sizes from fresh start-ups to fully-staffed and successful companies were present. I was a little turned off by some of the pitch’s because of their lack of “enthusiasm”. But that’s why it was important for them to be there that night. They needed to learn from what other people did well. (Kudos to Guilherme Cunha of YellowVertical.com, for a memorable pitch!)
“Pizza and networking” was supposed to follow the elevator pitch’s, but unfortunately the Pizza was a tad late so we got started on the panel “pre-pizza”. First of foremost, the Moderator, Ronald Bradford, Principal of 42SQL. I’ve seen him around the city at different events and every time he has made himself known. A very smart, sharp and “in-the-know” individual…and kept the panel running smoothly and on-time.
The panelists of the night were…
…Alex Baydin, Founder and CEO of PerformLine
…Derek Lee, Founder and CEO of SocialDough (in the works)
…Noah Robinson, Owner at Mercenary International (his blog here)
…Max Ramirez, Head of online ad sales for blinkx.com
Each were very knowledgeable in their own space, and contributed very well to the topic at hand. I took the liberty of jotting down some highlights. Derek Lee seemed to be very clear that “if this is your life’s work, build your business for 5 years from now, not today. [...] You need to know a site is going to make money first, then make it scalable (not the other way around)”.
Alex Baydin stayed closest to the topic at hand pushing CPI, CPC and CPA for best methods of monetization. “CPA is great for a publisher with a small budget” and “CPC is good for contextual targetting”.
Next up was Max Ramirez, who took a different approach with pushing video content. “Right Now is the time to go after video and don’t be shy to call the NBC’s of this world”. Obviously he has the chihulees to call those companies and break deals, but his point was clear…”VIDEO CONTENT = $$”.
Moving into a more brand-aware direction, Noah Robinson’s approach was simple: “WEAR A PINK SHIRT AND GET NOTICED!!” (…with his hat that night, I imagine he got his point across). He also made 2 other good points: “Don’t waste time with branded ads” and “Data is everything”.
The discussions went on and the panelists contintued on. Around 9pm the panel ended and everybody headed over for a few drinks at Dewey’s Flatiorn! Overall, it was a great event and definitely worth the $5 fee! The September 4th Ultra Light Startups event was their biggest and best yet. The addition of an interactive panel discussion rather than a single speaker helped boost attendance and I’m interested to see what they do next.
For those of you interested in finding more info on the group, check out their Facebook Group, LinkedIn Group (new), or Mailing List to be sure you receive announcements.
Article By: Joshua ‘The Red’ Russak (Red@aclion.com)
I was looking for a healthy post and noticed the word FREE on one of my favorite blog’s “AlleyInsider“. Posted by Eric Krangel at 8am today, the article titled Free Pass To Web 2.0 Expo, Get It Here writes about how you can easily gain free access to the Web2.0 Expo/Conference in September (which, if you’re reading this blog, you BETTER be going.) I’m still getting over my surgery and a bit loopy from the pain med’s so I’ll simply “quote” the blog-post and you can go ahead and get yourself some FREE passes:
We know: your company is a labor of love. But let’s be serious. It’s also a labor of capitalism. And at some point you’re going to want to turn that labor into wealth. Dividends? Sale? IPO? Henry Blodget and our expert panel will reveal the secrets to cashing out.
Want to hear this and other Web 2.0 speakers including Arianna Huffington of the Huffington Post, Marc Benioff of Salesforce.com and Tim O’Reilly of O’Reilly Media? We have a pass to the event, valued at $1095 a pop.
Leave a comment on this post, telling us you want in. (Be sure to register for a Silicon Alley Insider account with your email, which gives you an alleyinsider.com URL with all of your comments in one place, as well as more nifty things to come). At 5:00 pm EST on August 1, we’ll pick a number between 1 and the total number of comments. If it’s your number, you win.
Feel free to comment as many times as you like. But if you don’t win, you can at least get $100 off your Web 2.0 Expo registration with code “webny08bm7.”
So what are you waiting for? Head over to AlleyInsider now, and as they mentioned – “if you don’t win, you can at least get $100 off your Web 2.0 Expo registration with code webny08bm7.”