August 2009 Posts

What Should Sports Legends Challenge Do Now? (or “How Do You Recover From Complete and Total Social Media Disaster?”)

BREAKING NEWS: They made Spam better.
Creative Commons License photo credit: brownpau

Last month, I laid out the massive unethical social media and online community marketing campaign being executed by Sports Legends Challenge, an upcoming poker tournament that has major athletes (like Jim Brown, Joe Namath, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Troy Aikman and Tony Hawk) and sponsors (like JetBlue, Fox Sports Radio and the Visa Black Card) associated with it.

I’m not going to rehash the gory details here – please read the original post for all of the information. From spamming hundreds of forums and social sites to intimidation via Twitter and deceptive marketing – it’s all there.

Since it was published, I’ve received a lot of traffic to the post from the Atlanta area, where the company is based, including someone who was searching for my home address. I had a phone conversation with Bruce Bibbero, the CEO of the company, that was mixed at best. Though he suggested it would be investigated, I’ve heard and seen nothing of this. In fact, just the opposite. The past damage remains and new damage continues to be made. Just on Friday, I (of all people in the world – me) received an unsolicited e-mail advertisement from the company (screenshot).

So, I got to thinking. If I was Sports Legends Challenge or, better yet, I was someone that Sports Legends Challenge turned to, to clean up this mess, what would I do? For added perspective beyond my own, I reached out to a few friends who I knew would be able to provide me with valuable insight.

They are Brandon Eley, Interactive Director at Kelsey Advertising  & Design, founder of online shoe retailer and co-author of “Online Marketing Inside Out”; Jeremy Wright, CEO at digital strategy agency netmobs, co-founder of b5media and author of “Blog Marketing”; Jason Falls, principal at Social Media Explorer and Martin Reed of community management blog Community Spark and the administrator of the, Female Forum and Soap Forum communities.

I’m Speaking at Social Media Business Forum in Durham, North Carolina on October 23

Social Media Business ForumShortly after I get back from Blog World Expo 2009, I’ll be heading to Durham, North Carolina for the Social Media Business Forum at the North Carolina Central University School of Education. It’s being organized by Kipp Bodnar of Howard, Merrell & Partners, Wayne Sutton of OurHashtag, Ryan Boyles of IBM and Jeff Cohen of OurHashtag.

My specific presentation(s) are not yet set, but the speaking lineup looks really cool and includes people like Jason Falls of Social Media Explorer, Wayne, Kipp, Jason Keath of Social Fresh, Angela Benton of, Laurie Smithwick of kirtsy and others.

If you’re interested in attending, the early bird registration of $125 runs through September 18. After that, it’ll be $250. I look forward to seeing you there.

For Your Consideration: My South by Southwest Interactive (SXSW) Session/Panel Proposals

It’s that time of the year again! The SXSW 2010 PanelPicker has opened and, with it, 2,219 proposals are up for consideration for the Interactive portion of the conference. I am on 7 (yes, feel free to giggle) of these.

Online voting accounts for 30% of the decision making process (30% goes to the SXSW staff and 40% to an advisory board). Anyone can vote and registration is required. I would appreciate any and all consideration and, if you feel any of my sessions are worthy, your vote. I have spoken at South by Southwest twice, but both were solo book based presentations. I’ve never been on a panel or done a normal solo presentation. I’m hoping this is the year I can break in, with your help and I appreciate your support.

Here are the proposed sessions that I am a part of, along with a description and my fellow panelists on each (click on the title to vote):

I’m Speaking at Blog World Expo 2009!

Back in June, I mentioned how I had submitted or was included in a few proposals for Blog World Expo 2009. Today, they released the schedule and I’m happy to say that I will be speaking at the even (I’ll be doing a book signing for “Managing Online Forums,” as well, but that is not yet scheduled).

On Friday, October 16 at 5 PM in Room 288, I’ll be participating in the “Social Media: What’s Not to Like” panel, which also features Amber Naslund; Director of Community at Radian6 and blogger at Altitude Branding, Wayne Sutton; Partner at OurHashtag and blogger at and Robert Scoble; Managing Director at at Rackspace and blogger at Scobleizer.

Here is the description we came up with: We love social media. It’s helped us meet new people, to further our careers and even to speak at this conference. But, that doesn’t mean it’s all sunshine and roses, either. There are tactics and social trends that, frankly, worry us because we want social media to grow and for more people and companies to participate.

Beyond just worrying us, though, they can hurt your brand, scare people away and damage your relationships. From the mob mentality to self entitlement, we’ll tackle some of the most troubling and how you can avoid them.

And the takeaway: A better understanding of the social media landscape and how to participate with respect toward others, while also having a beneficial experience, both personally and professionally.

A big thank you to everyone at Blog World (Rick Calvert, Dave Cynkin, Jim Turner, others) for having me. It should be a ton of fun. If you want to come, you can use the discount code IFROGGYVIP for 20% off. I look forward to seeing you there.

Friends Making Moves (Oh, Yeah… I’m Back)

I took some time off and got away for a while, so that’s why it’s been really quiet around here. But, I’m back now. It was good to get a break and now I’m working on the pile that amassed in my absence.

Between now and the time I left, a trio of good friends of mine have made some professional life changes that I wanted to highlight, in order to congratulate them. Two are headed out of corporate life – one is headed into it.

Jeremy Wright left his CEO post at b5media, and has started netmobs, where he’ll work with clients, helping them to grow their business.

Jonathan Bailey has joined and he’ll work full-time for the content protection company. He’s leaving his independent consulting business behind, but will continue to author the excellent Plagiarism Today and co-host the Copyright 2.0 Show alongside yours truly.

Finally, Jason Falls has started his own communications consultancy, after over 3 years at Doe-Anderson. Like Jeremy, he’ll be helping his own clients now, but more on the social media, PR, marketing end of things.

I think extraordinarily highly of all three men. I’m thrilled for them and wish them endless amounts of success!