Direct Mail Email Marketing Lead Generation Productivity Buster

Poisioned by Your Own Dogfood

I don’t know if any other industries use this phrase, but it’s very common in software to talk about “Eating Your Own Dogfood” – in other words: Using the products that you make. You’d think this is basic “support the home team” kind of thing, but it doesn’t always happen, and when the word gets out it is usually a big PR problem.

Now you can get the punchline when I tell you that we use the software development tool that we sell at work, and the server name is Alpo.

This does lead to an interesting situation I’ve only seen twice, and the second time was last week. I get forwarded emails on a regular basis from companies that sell leads and other information, and occasionally from firm that append data.

A data appending service will take your existing lists, and then try and fill in the blanks. This can be very helpful if you have a list of emails and are looking for mailing addresses, or vice versa. There are different methods to do this, ranging from fully automated (we know that HugeCorp uses first initial last name @ for email, so just do that – and come on people! You can do that with excel yourself, for the love of god!), to completely manual – a team of callers updates and refreshes info.

Be careful of these services to confirm that they don’t use your data to clean up everyone else’s…

So my co-worker David (name changed to protect everyone involved), forwarded me a message from a data appending service.

The email starts “Dear Deborah,”

Productivity Buster

Addicted to AdRants

I really don’t have time to write tonight so this is a good chance for me to cop out by mentioning my latest productivity buster – AdRants. I’ve been subscribed for over a year but it continues to get more addictive as you read it more frequently. The problem is that you start with one interesting story and they do a great job of linking to another, and another, and another.

Check it out, but don’t blame me if you look up and 20 minutes have vanished from your day…

Back to working on the new project – a New Podcast to be announced at Podcamp NYC.

Geek Stuff Podcasting Productivity Buster The Marketeer

M Show Receives A-List Nomination Paperwork

I got a package in the mail from Jason Calacanis asking me to fill out the application for the A-List. It’s pretty straightforward, you send them $1,095 and that gets things rolling. If you blog daily for 3 years at the end of your probation they flip a switch and you get your choice of a job at Edelman, Crayon or Sequoia plus a guaranteed 250k visitors per month.

Plus once you’re in the circle you get stuff like cars, houses, laptops, etc. for free (as long as you blog about them of course).

They have a special meeting annually where they talk about and laugh at the D-Listers who wreck blogger meetups just by showing up and they also review the B-List to see who’s eligible to get off the farm team. I think Chris Pirillo (dude, THIS is funny) has something to do with it because it’s codenamed Smurfdex. Obviously I’m ecstatic about the chance at the big show, don’t worry, I won’t forget all the little people. I’d promise to blog all about it if/when I make it, but of course the first rule of A-List is “Never talk about A-List”.

Ok, that’s the best I’ve got for you for April Fools. There’s some other funny stuff (better than my lame attempt) such as Seth Godin’s Captain Danger Stunt Monkey Baby Chute (I need to do a radio spot for that), Google hits twice with Toilet based WiFi, and GMail Paper services. Please feel free to add links to any other good pranks in your comments.

And it’s Sunday, that means a new episode of the Best Business Podcast, The M Show, including an interview with the Author of The Strategy Paradox. This week’s show is out early because we may be putting an offer in on a home today. More to follow…

Brain Buster Productivity Buster The Marketeer


I thought this was cool:


Daily Life Productivity Buster

About that TPS Report…

One of the laws of thermodynamics can be summed up as: Entropy Builds.

I realized that today while doing my “short monthly update” that gets forwarded up the org chart. What started as a paragraph now involves about 3 spreadsheets pulling data from 4 sources and takes at least an hour to do. The worst part is that I see no effective way around this and have to give up and call it the price of organizational growth. Every other month there’s another stat worth tracking and that’s another straw to hoist up on to the camel.

I have no conclusion about this.

Daily Life Productivity Buster

Busy, so check out Free Hugs

Sorry but today I’m catching up, more tonight. Too keep yourself entertained check out the Free Hugs campaign that I saw this weekend (I know, old news but new to me, and perhaps to you). Chris Brogan had a Free Hugs shirt on at Podcamp and Mitch Joel had the clip in his presentation. Check out the story of Juan Mann

Productivity Buster

Webinar Crash

Either a windows update or something in Windows Media Player killed my webinar yesterday. The attendees were able to view my desktop but not the media file as it was playing. GoTo Meeting had the fix – there’s a random setting buried in Windows Media Player where you can set the degree of hardware acceleration. Turn it all the way down and my player crashes, turn it up and attendees can’t see the video. Put it in the middle position (I guess the technical term for that is “Juuuust Right”) and it’s fine.

So we have the makeup session today. I’ve also got a video I’m going to drop in here as soon as YouTube gets done, more later!

Productivity Buster The Marketeer

Microsoft Crayonville Connection Uncovered

You heard it here first. Last week I was trying to compile my results from my HTML vs. text email test and having some trouble with a SQL query (I have to use the Access tool, I only write SQL code as comic relief for the true developers I work with). While trolling the Microsoft help center I came across this page showing an official Microsoft phonebook. In the event that the absurd traffic that this scoop generates brings that page down, I’ve done a screen cap of the book for your convenience:

MS Phonebook As you can see they have Jaffe not once but twice! They must be using “Jo” as either a feminine disguise or reference to the Curry “Bend over b!tich” scandal.

The feminine disguise theory could also mean that Holly Holt is a cover for Shel Holtz, and I’ve been told on good authority that Wei Yu loosely translates to “C.C. Chapman“.
You heard it here first.

Disclaimer: It seems like people occasionally have trouble with this stuff, so to be clear – this is a joke. I have no idea if there is a connection or not, but since you have hit my link bait perhaps you’d be interested in some other posts if any of the categories on the right catch your attention. Or better yet, listen to The M Show! More news as it happens.

Geek Stuff Productivity Buster

Burden of a Geek

Happy Thanksgiving!

The blog has arrived. I really wanted to go with “Adventures in Marketing” but the URL was gone and it didn’t sound that cool, and wasn’t too search engine friendly. After much thought I am excited to announce Ronin Marketeer!

Ok… you’d think I could turn the spinometer down for at least a day like today… guess not.

I am deep in my holiday tradition of providing tech support for my relatives while I’m at home. Adam Curry once said something along the lines of “As a geek it’s your duty to keep your friends and families machines going”, and I’ve always kind of liked that line. Perhaps describing it as a duty makes it sound more romantic than getting the spyware gunk out of the machines my nephews have played with.

That said, I’m thankful for family, friends and all the blessings I have. This is going to be another exciting year and I’m looking forward to seeing how many people we can bring along on the ride. Enjoy the turkey!

Geek Stuff Podcasting Productivity Buster The Marketeer

The Marketeer at Podcamp Pittsburgh

I got to meet the most famous videobloggers of all time… The stars of TikiBarTV
podcamp pittsburgh