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With Jim Collins

Best-selling author of Good to Great

With Jack Welch

Former CEO of General Electric and best-selling author

With Patrick Lencioni

Best-selling author of the Five Dysfunctions of a Team and other leading management books.

George Levy featured in Computer World magazine.

George Levy Speaking at World Innovation Forum

With Miguel Bose

International Spanish music superstar

With Calvin Klein

Fashion designer and CEO – Creator of one of the world’s leading fashion empires.

I attended an online marketing webinar on Tuesday called “The Science of Timing: When to Do Anything” featuring Dan Zarrella, Social Media Scientist for HubSpot.

As a current HubSpot client with HSM and the lead person involved in working with their tools, I can vouch for the fact that the folks at HubSpot know what they are talking about.

For anyone interested in picking some of these strategies up, I also personally recommend their Inbound Marketing University program.

Anyway, returning to today’s webinar, there were over 23K registered participants (pretty massive for a webinar) and given that Dan provided a Twitter Hashtag #TimeSci – there was just as much action going on inside the webinar as outside in the Twittersphere.

The focus of the session was to present the results of a large body of research conducted by Dan on the effects of timing different marketing actions and their impact on the measurable results (open rates, clickthroughs, shares, etc.)

Should you wish to see the slides presented, here is a link to the presentation:


The premise of the presentation is that improving the performance of marketing actions many times consists of “Contra-Competitive Timing.”

The essence of Contra-Competitive Timing is to execute your marketing actions at times which will not compete with as many other similar actions from your competition. ie. You do not want to send out your marketing campaign, post your blogs or Tweets at the same time as your competitors.

Some interesting elements I took away from today’s presentation include the following:

On Twitter:

  • To get the most Retweets, send your Tweets later in the day, from 1pm all the way to 2am.
  • Best results from Tweeting comes from Tweeting around 22-25 times a day.

On Facebook:

  • On Facebook pages, posting status updates once every 2 days provides the most likes and least unsubscribes.
  • Sharing on Facebook is most effective on Saturday, followed by Sunday.

On Email:

  • 80% of people have only 1 email for both personal & business, not 2 separate accounts.
  • Social/eMail marketing communications should be on a 7 day week schedule – highest open and click rate for email communications takes place on weekends and in the morning.
  • Only downside of sending emails on weekends – it also increases the number of SPAM complaints. (Makes sense as the field is not as crowded with other business related emails)
  • Sending out more emails per month does not have an increased impact on the unsubscribe rate. (Note from personal experience: People who opt out from your list are doing you a favor as they are not interested… Trust me, you don’t need them lowering your list performance and you’d much rather they unsubscribe than mark you as SPAM or permanently ignore your emails.)

The webinar was filled with valuable information and with such a massive audience Tweeting under the hashtag #TimeSci, it felt like a huge party (complete with DJ mixed On Hold music [download the playlist here] and a Twitter After-Party.)

Overall, Dan and the folks at HubSpot delivered a great event and I feel that attending was definitely time well-invested.

What do you think about this “Science of Timing”?

Do you agree with Dan’s observations?


Music video by Quietdrive performing Time After Time. (C) 2006 SONY BMG MUSIC ENTERTAINMENT
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My friend and fellow blogger Paul Dunay Tweeted today a link to a Blog posting by Column Five Media titled “Do You Need a Social Media Detox?”

The post featured the following infographic which lists symptoms of “Social Media Addiction.

Personally… I never have thought of myself as an addict of anything but after reviewing the list below, I’m not so sure anymore. (Click on the image to see a larger version.)


What about you? Do you show any of the tell-tale signs?

Do You Need a Social Media Detox?







Music video by Millencolin performing Detox. (C) 2008 Epitaph Records

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Sharper Image Superwave OvenI just purchased a Sharper Image Superwave Oven from an infomercial.

That is approximately my 387th unnecessary impulse purchase from a TV infomercial.

You see, as a Web guy, I’m usually on the web while watching TV. I also hate picking up the phone and talking to a sales rep who is gonna pitch me to upgrade and spend more…

So, of course, I immediately go directly to the advertised website, no hunting around to find the best deal and I click on buy. (Infomercial advertisers, please do not take this as a sign to market to me more aggressively… You’re already doing a spectacular job 🙂 )

The wonderful thing about the Sharper Image Superwave Oven TV infomercial purchase process is that I walked in with a price in mind of $119.85 and somehow walked out with a bunch of other things and a final purchase of over $185. Best of all – I’m happy with my purchase.

Pure magic!

What fascinates me about the “TV Infomercial purchase process” is that a lot of the money is made in the backend. In other words, the initial purchase is just part of the amount the producers of the spot expect to finally earn out of each sale.

So… The way it goes is:

I watch the TV spot and run to their website… I go into their infomercial buying process website and agree to purchase the product (call it Snuggie, Yoshi Blade, Oxy Clean, Pasta Boat, Slap Chop, Magic Bullet, Chef Basket, Shake Weight, ShamWow, I can keep on going… I’ve got ’em all trust me.)

Anyway, you start the purchase process and insert your credit card.

That’s just the beginning of the whole sale… After filling in the initial credit card and contact form and clicking next, you are presented with a series of upgrades and additional options which are not mentioned on the TV spot. All this happens and you still haven’t received a confirmation of purchase process, but suddenly you simply cannot live without this stuff and since you already whipped out your credit card, you say “ah… what the heck, what’s a few bucks more?”

So, what started as a $119.85  purchase suddenly climbs an additional $65.00 and you have no idea what just happened.

Afterwards, I’m just sitting there with a grin on my face because I bought the fun thing on TV and I’m soon gonna be able to play with it just like the happy, smiling people on the infomercial.

Sadly, the food I will cook in it will probably never look like the one on TV and I may wind up tossing it out (happened before with the Magic Bullet, but maybe THIS time, will be different.)

So… Going back to the actual sale.

The Online Marketing lesson here is that a website sales process can be designed to be as effective as a live sales person in upgrading any purchase and making the customer spend more with every sale.

Think how McDonalds would go about selling you a burger online, “would you like Fries and a Coke with that?” Sure… Why not. Ka-ching!

Now, about that Sharper Image Superwave Oven with the deluxe accessory upgrade I just bought… I can  just hear my wife saying “Here you go again, I hope it’s at least good enough to boil water and make Pop-Corn.”




Music video by Whitesnake performing Here I Go Again. (C) 1987 Geffen Records

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I am currently working with the HSM speakers and content team on completing the full calendar of HSM Online Seminars for 2011, many of which are offered for free to interested attendees from anywhere in the world.

One of my personal goals and visions within HSM ever since I joined in 2008, has been to bring all the valuable lessons and insights from their in-person events to a worldwide audience over the Internet.

What is presented at these live conferences and seminars is simply priceless… But in the past, not everyone has had access or the opportunity to get this valuable information.

To put things into context, HSM has been known worldwide for over 20 years as a leader for their in-person events such as World Business Forum, World Innovation Forum and ExpoManagement among others. Each of these events can have thousands of attendees and yet – there’s a potential worldwide audience, many times larger, which simply cannot make it in person (and if they did, quite frankly there would not be an arena big enough to fit them all.)

So by leveraging the Internet and opening these events to a webcast, I am now able to deliver a polished, virtual event experience that lets participants view all the action that takes place on stage from their own computers, regardless of where they may be in the world.

Add to that the capability to view these Webcasts in an On Demand basis, not just during the live broadcast, and you open up a whole range of additional new possibilities and markets including other countries with very different time zones from the USA such as Australia, Europe and Asia.

Now, I have to admit, although the current technology does a great job of transmitting video and audio, it still cannot match the experience of attending in person.

For starters, there are things you cannot transmit over the web such as face-to-face networking, the chance to catch all that happens off the stage such as in side workshops or sharing a drink with a new potential client, and the opportunity to meet and interact in person with the featured speakers. It does have its limitations…

Then again, in comparison, most people who watch the Super Bowl around the world are not physically at the game and they still get to catch the action and enjoy the experience.

In the same vein, for people who are interested in participating in HSM’s events from halfway around the world, without needing to travel and having the option to view the material when it is most convenient for them, there is nothing like webcasting to bring them so close to the action while still being so far.

Music video by Hoobastank performing So Close, So Far. (C) 2009 The Island Def Jam Music Group

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SXSW 2011 is currently in full effect and I’m following all the action via the web and the Blogosphere.

One of the things that most caught my attention from this year’s SXSW is the new “Third Man Records Rolling Record Store” which is basically a big yellow bus with records for sale and sound equipment to allow for live performances.

The Rolling record store was created by Jack White, front man for the now disbanded group The White Stripes.

Jack’s idea is that even with the disruption the Internet has created in the music industry and the fact that standalone record stores are practically gone, there is still room to have a store that exclusively sells records.

I’ve included below two videos, the first describing the Third Man Rolling Record Store concept and the second showing Jack playing at SXSW using the sound equipment built into the bus.

Rolling Record Store

Jack Jamming at SXSW 2011

What do you think about Jack’s Magic Bus? Do you think it can bring back the “standalone record store?”

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About Levy
George Levy is an award-winning digital marketing and CRM expert with more than 15 years of experience creating and executing online and mobile strategies.
He is the former Vice President of Online Marketing for World Business Forum (WOBI) and a co-founding team member of Yupi.com, an Internet startup acquired by Microsoft Corporation to become what is now MSN Latino. Continue Reading ...

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