What Was Watson Smoking?


The Jeopardy-winning computer from IBM known as Watson is making his computing skills available to the world. Developers are now able to create online apps that use Watson to crunch the numbers in the background. I discovered one of these that compares your Twitter account to those of celebrities and picks the best match.

Such High Praise Cannot Be Ignored

I got the following comment from a spammer on my other blog. How can I ignore such high praise from an anonymous commenter on the internet:

“This website truly has all of the information I wanted about this subject and didn’t know who to ask.”

LinkedIn Helps You to Build a Powerful Internal Network

A few months ago I started working for a new company. A big company. If you are reading this blog post, I’m sure you’ve heard of it. It’s called Oracle. And we have over 135,000 employees. Imagine how big my LinkedIn network would be if I connected with all of them. Or 10% of them. Even 1% of them would significantly grow the reach of my network.

3 Compelling Stats that Make the Case for Social Selling for B2B

Social selling is the latest trend to hit the sales world in years. Or maybe it’s just a new term for how the best salespeople have been selling all along. Or it might even be the hook that finally aligns marketing and sales at B2B companies. Before you can consider implementing it at your organization, you have to understand what it is.

It is no secret that the buyer’s process is changing. Many techniques that used to work no longer do. Let’s look at some statistics that show how it has changed.

I Want to Move to Canada to Vote For Him

Sometimes you see something so absurd that it makes you want to cheer. And want to move to another country just to vote for an independent candidate for Parliament. What’s Parliament again?

h/t: HolyKaw

A Happy Birthday Without Social Media

This year I decided that I did not want to make a big deal about my birthday. It was a milestone birthday that I wasn’t too excited to celebrate. Chronological age is not something that is important to me. I am fit. I am healthy. And it really doesn’t matter how many years ago I arrived on this earth.

I spent my birthday at the beach with my daughter and I was not really interested in checking my phone all day for birthday wishes. I know that most of the wishes from friends are sincere, even though they would not come without Facebook’s reminder. They are certainly more sincere than the birthday emails from my dentist and my insurance agent.

So earlier this week I made my birthday private on Facebook. This way nobody got a reminder about my birthday. I also locked down my Facebook page so nobody could post to my page even if they knew it was my birthday. I treated it like an experiment. Who would contact me on my birthday by means other than Facebook, without a reminder from Facebook?

There are two other factors driving this. The first is that I stopped wishing people happy birthday on Facebook over a year ago. I just didn’t find enough sincerity in it. If I wanted to wish someone happy birthday, even if reminded of the date by Facebook, I did so by text. The other thing influencing this decision is that I have stopped going to Facebook. It is just too big of a time waster for me. Sure, there are pictures I want to see, but there are too many other distractions. Since many of my friends are also in marketing, I do find business relevant posts on Facebook too, but there’s too much chafe and not enough wheat.

So how did my experiment go? It went pretty well. I got a handful of texts and phone calls from close friends and family. I even got a message from a friend from elementary school who remembered my birthday. I did not have to keep checking my phone all day. I could enjoy my time with my daughter. I was not a slave to the red notification dot. I did not need the validation of X number of birthday wishes. I did not need 10% more wishes than last year. I didn’t miss it at all. And I had a happy birthday.

Where do I go from here? I will unlock my page so people can post to it, but I will keep my birthday private. And while I can’t say I won’t go back to Facebook sparingly, if do post something, I will not obsess over my likes and comments. That game is behind me.

There Were Some Good Ideas in There Somewhere

When I was teaching at Ball State, I had lots of ideas that I was trying to convey to the students. There are certainly a lot of threads to pull together in social media, some of which are hard without real business context. At times I even tried to model the real world of social media by overwhelming the students with information and sharing the ever-changing nature of the space. I tell myself that was intentional, and not the by-product of an inexperienced teacher.

I got an email from another former student that makes think I might have been on to something. The subject line was “Thanks.” The email is below.

I just wanted to reach out and say thanks for the very valuable skills you taught me in social media. Little did I know, my job as a sales rep utilizes LinkedIn on a regular basis to make contact and spread our message. Who says you need to be in marketing to utilize social media? I really had a head start over others in my position because my LinkedIn was already set up for success.

My New Favorite Spam Comment

This is an amazing comment that was left on my B2B blog. I wonder what someone was thinking when they left this comment. How could I ever approve this? Except that I might because it is so ridiculous.

You truly live in a fantasy world. This obsession to brainwash humans has gone past its use-by-date. It is no longer fit for human consumption.

When Enterprise Computing and Personal Branding Collide

Anyone who has ever worked for a big company understands how the bureaucracy can sometimes get in your way and be frustrating. But sometimes it makes me smile. Like when colleagues who understand have to explain it to others who may not.

I was copied on the following task request:

Task Description: There are cases where an employee wants his blog byline to be different than his [system login] name. For instance, my colleague Jeff is identified as “Jeff Cohen” within our internal system and in other Oracle systems, but for professional reasons he would prefer to use the full name “Jeffrey L. Cohen” on the Oracle Marketing Cloud blog. Do you have the capability to override the [system login] name in these cases, or is the only option for the employee to change their display name via their [system login]? Thanks.