I’ve tried Seesmic and Hootsuite when unable to use Tweetdeck and find the former two totally lacking. I like that Hootsuite is in the cloud, but it’s the little things that count. I.e., when I type @, I want the system to pop a window where I can insert followers by typing the first letter(s) of their name. The search box on Hootsuite is also annoying- I much prefer Tweetdeck’s QuickFollow, which allows me to find a user and see their profile and tweets without having to navigate within a tiny popup box. Tweetdeck’s editable search columns are also more user-friendly. As you can tell, I’ve used Hootsuite more than Seesmic. It’s better. Seesmic’s entire layout, color scheme, fonts, and overall feel are just too clunky and grungy somehow. It’s like the WordPress theme Grunge was applied to a Twitter client in an ugly way.
Anyway check out the blog and try out SocialOomph.com.
I had my first Serenbe experience last week, attending the opening of a Lew Oliver housing development called The Nest.
The cottages are fully self-sustaining and use solar panels. The tour we took inside the model Nest reminded me of a prairie cottage with slanted roofs- with more children than bedrooms and I kept thinking about Abraham Lincoln’s childhood shack, but turned modern and green. The theme kept reappearing- this place aims to depart from society and civilization as we know it; as we suffer it. Pollution and gluttony and filth of urban life. Lack of recycling bins. Etc. I think it’s all meant to be a giant circle- agricultural revolution –> industrial revolution –> mass commercialization and consumerism –> wealth established by few –> culture dictates the trendiness of (once counter-culture) green living –> the affluent afford to abandon the dirty consumerist city and move to Stepfordbe where eggs are fresh and granite is passe. The trend is remarkably cyclical…
Chef’s nickname for Serenbe was apt. Idyllic and pristine, set 25 miles south of Atlanta in a rural area, Serenbe is a sustainable, green community that appears to be like any other small farm town from the outside. But inside the two square miles, neatly laid roads and brand new buildings with a couple shops, bakeries, and restaurants are populated by some hybrid form of a Lululemon Buckhead Betty turned Berkeley, CA and transplanted into Georgia. They are thin, wealthy proprietors of upcycled furniture shops featured in Architectural Digest, and clothing/jewelry boutiques, whose 450% markups on Turkish costume jewelry and tattered, mis-sized frocks caused me to actually LOL. (Note: My uncontrollable spurt of laughter at the $250 price tag on a ring I swear I bought at Claire’s in seventh grade would have been gauche only if said blonde storeowner and her small, dark, frumpy assistant had been fully checked in. Instead, my overt, indelicate reaction practically whizzed over their wined- / pilled-out heads.) I was overall amused.
For the serious inquiring reader: Here is an urbanexus blog post about Serenbe with more pix and info.
The Hil served one of the five best restaurant meals I have ever eaten. Impeccable service. Ingredients are local and organic- they even have a small farm and garden outside the place, where I was forced to “pet” (read: gawk/coo over) the picturesque livestock by my animal-loving cohorts. When a three-inch spider was discovered in my nest (hair on head), and the donkeys, though cute, depressed me at their lack of water or caretakers anywhere to be found, I simply wanted to eat indoors and stop interacting with my dinner, so to speak.
Maybe this return to simpler life is too abrupt. It is certainly for the elite. Re: poor city people eat cheap unhealthy food –> obesity, and being green is expensive (at least in Atlanta, we must pay to recycle, only some afford Whole Foods vs. McDonalds). Except for public transportation vs. driving your own car– this is an inexpensive way to be green, accessible to all, but still stigmatized and arguably culturally humiliating, as Ludacris memorably explains in Crash. I think everyone in Serenbe drove…
Instead of complaining about the sublime ineptitude of BP and the unfathomable, astronomical damage this spill is causing each day, I will attempt to heed the words of Mother Teresa as per The Secret and the Law of Attraction: “I was once asked why I don’t participate in anti-war demonstrations. I said that I will never do that, but as soon as you have a pro-peace rally, I’ll be there.” Yes, let’s all try to attract positive energy and not marinate in this catastrophe which affects many things including… (since I must relate my rant to food for this blog) the seafood industry! I don’t want crude in my shrimp gumbo! According to the NY Times Diners Journal blog, many are worried about the havoc on our seafood…
Think of a brand to which you are loyal, or better yet, for which you are an advocate. Toilet paper, automobile make, shampoo, yogurt… etc. Why are you fascinated by this brand’s advertising or image?
I just listened to Wayne Hurlbert’s Blog Business Success May 7, 2010 podcast, in which he interviewed Sally Hogshead. It only took about twenty minutes of listening for me to be not only fascinated by her work, but eager to share the revelations with others. Hogshead’s book, Fascinate, is based on three years of researching thousands of people to find out what makes a person or a brand fascinating. People who work in marketing will find her ideas useful because consumers have what Hogshead accurately pegs, “the attention span of a goldfish.”
The premise of the F Score Test is that you are fascinating, but how? Hogshead has identified seven universal Triggers of fascination:
Power- Why we focus on people and things that control us
Lust- Why we’re seduced by the anticipation of pleasure
Mystique- Why we are intrigued by unanswered questions
Prestige- Why we fixate on rank and respect
Alarm- Why we take action at the threat of negative consequences
Vice- Why we’re tempted by “forbidden fruit”
Trust- Why we’re loyal to reliable options
Note: Fascination is not synonymous with respect, popularity, reverence, or even liking. Fascination is just about captivation and not being able to ignore the subject. We each have a primary, secondary, and dormant trigger we project to the world everyday.
Hogshead gives corporate brand examples in her interview with Zane Safrit:
Primary trigger: Lust
Godiva. We developed a drink called Chocolixier. There was a whole sensory experience that lets the consumer relate.
Apple does this as well. You are able to be a part of the brand. It is about an openness and availability. You create a space where people want to draw closer. Brands are incorporating more of the Lust trigger.
I took the test and so enjoyed reading my results… incredibly accurate. I recommend at least taking the free 28 question online test on her site. Very quick and so useful. The results identify how you fascinate others (when you do fascinate them) and what you might do to round out your fascinating self (I.e., activating your dormant trigger. Mine happens to be mystique- so I would do well to hold back some information now and again.)
About Hogshead: Sally’s work and insights have been profiled by The New York Times, NBC, ABC, CBS and MSNBC. She’s been described by the press as “intrepid” and an “advertising mastermind…” And I love this: “When not writing and speaking, Sally campaigns to bring back the ‘hogshead’ as a unit of popular measurement in the U.S.” (A hogshead is a barrel that holds 62 gallons.)