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Open Letter

An Open Letter to AOL

An Open Letter to AOL


Dear America Online…I mean AOL,

This is one of those letters that I never thought I would write. I don’t mean this in a bad way. I actually shock myself when I say, “It is a good thing that I am writing this letter.” Let me back up and explain what this letter is all about.

As a young man growing up in the 1980s and becoming a young adult in the 1990s you, AOL, have touched and effected my life on many levels. If it was not for the hundreds of discs you mailed me, my college apartment in Chico would not have had any coasters for beers. If it was not for you, AOL, I would never had played the beer drinking game “AOL Card House.” When we couldn’t find playing cards, we built a house of AOL discs. If it was not for you, AOL, I never would have entered that chat room and met that 22-year-old Swedish fashion model, with whom I had adult conversations (I wonder if she ever received that cashier’s check I sent her for that investment?) And, I should go on record that if it were not for you, I would not be where I am today.

Truly, I mean it. It was with you that I first got online, found content, and became networked.

Then you and I, AOL, went our separate ways. You wanting me to just spend time with you and your own content, making me dial in. You tried to keep me trapped. I was not ready for a serious, committed relationship. I had to learn that another whole online world was out there… DSL, websites, content from other places. I had to end our relationship and go on without you. I had to find myself.

At this juncture of my life, though, something has happened. I didn’t really realize it until this past month. It seems we have started to reconnect. But I didn’t know it was you, AOL! Maybe it was the work you had done, the new style, the midlife changes you’ve made. The bottom line is this: you have changed. Maybe you’ve even grown up. Today, we have a new relationship!. Because people like lists, here’s my take on our new life together:

  • You are going places and putting yourself out there. It seems you have an iPad application called Editions. I really like it, and I’m using it daily.
  • You listen to me now. I emailed your Editions peeps and Sol L. responded to me directly. On a Saturday!
  • You seem to communicate better. Sol L. actually emailed me to let me know Editions was back up.
  • You care about my family and friends. It’s just not all about you anymore. I find myself reading my local San Carlos and Redwood City Patch. It seems Patch is owned by AOL.
  • You take interest in what I like. You even own the Huffington Post now.

So, let me continue to be honest. I still make jokes at your expense when you’re not around. This said, I have a new respect for you. I just hope your attempt at trying to save our relationship is not just a little too late.

I want you to know that I’m willing to work on it…if you are.

Hugs,
Dave

 

 

August 22, 2011 By : Category : Featured News Open Letter Tags:, , , , ,
2 Comments

An Open Letter To Pizza Hut

An Open Letter To Pizza Hut

Dear Pizza Hut,

I like Pizza. My 5 kids like Pizza. Pizza is good.  Getting the right experience is good. That being said, you have really let me and my kids down recently.

Let me back up and tell you the story.

Recently, my twins had their 5th birthday party.  We had about a dozen 5 year olds over for a party with a bounce house. Oh how they loved the bounce house.  Per my kids request I ordered Pizza Hut, not my choice of Domino’s ,because they like the stuffed crust. (Hey I like the crust to, but feel loyal to Dominos, plus they have a great social marking)

Being the tech savvy guy I am, I ordered my pies via your website, it was a very easy experience. So, far so good right? Well then the pizzas arrived. They were wrong., well 2 of them were. The other 4 were fine. We quickly adapted to the problem and moved on.

Then the following week my family wanted more Pizza Hut. One look from those kids and I gave in. Ordering pizza again via your Iphone app.  I went to pick up the pizzas and again, they were wrong. I worked it out with the person at the counter.

Now, being the calm cool guy I am I posted this:

To your credit your responded with:

and this:

I was impressed! I had thought, wow you really care! You listen! You monitor conversations on twitter. Also, I figured you must of saw these tweets:

So, I quickly sent you a direct message as you requested. Yes, I follow directions well. So that is where I think you really dropped the ball with the @pizzahut. See, I have not heard back from you in 2 days. Are you done with me? What was the point in having me contact you directly? I am just wondering. I would think you would want to respond to me, have me write a blog post about how you hit a home run with your use of social media. I would tweet about it and others would Retweet it. There would be great buzz on twitter about it.

Sincerely,
Dave (the guy whose family likes stuffed crust)

July 21, 2010 By : Category : Featured News Open Letter Tags:, , , ,
14 Comments

An Open Letter To Fast Company

An Open Letter To Fast Company

Dear Fast Company,

First, let me congratulate you on your monthly magazine. It is a magazine, I still look forward to getting every month (along with my bible, Entertainment Weekly). It is great to get a magazine that has reviews, comment and articles about people I actual know instead of, say, Spencer and Heidi.

I am writing you this letter because you, well, do not get it.

You put out this well-done resource with articles about new technology, design, leadership, blah, blah, blah. It was something that told me, “Fast Company is a resource that is creditable and a good source for things in the Social Media/Online area.” That was until yesterday, when I got invited to take part in your  “Influence Project.”  See, first I got this teaser email back in June:

Hi Dave, it’s Rebecca from Fast Company and I want to share with you a very new, soon-to-be launched project.

The project? It’s a fun experiment called The Influence Project that will visualize and track how active influence spreads, the reach of people’s social graph, plus it will map degrees of separation, etc. By participating in the program, you can more accurately measure your active influence on your networks.  Everyone’s photo will land in the pages of Fast Company plus interesting stories from the program will also be covered by the magazine as well as online.

We’ll ping you Wednesday with more detailed info. And for being one of the first to jump in, we’d like to give you something back. We’ll email you the link to the site the eve prior to launch to check it out.

Looking forward to seeing you in The Influence Project and feel free to get in touch anytime.

Best,
Rebecca

The Influence Project :: Fast Company

I thought, “Cool, I am looking forward to this amazing metric, new technology  and new way to measure influence. Wow, maybe they will give Klout a run for their money.”

Then I got this email:

Dave,

Thank you for participating in Fast Company’s The Influence Project.
You’re about to find out how influential you really are.

Your unique, personalized ‘influencer’ URL is:

http://fcinf.com/v/ase7/welcome

Click on the above link, and start influencing!

Remember:
1) You can use any means to spread your unique link to your online network.
We shortened it for you so you can share on Twitter and Facebook.
2) Your goal is to influence as many people to click on it as possible.
3) You want those people to sign up as well, since they will be spreading
your influence along with their own.
4) You can track how your influence has grown, where it’s lead, and where
you stand at any time on the site.
5) Your picture is going to be in the November issue of Fast Company
magazine, where we’ll reveal the most influential person online!

Thank you,
The Fast Company team


Ummmm…a link? You’re measuring influence by the number of people I get to click on a link? A lousy link? Are you kidding me? Is this a joke? I know — you’re punking me right? Where is Ashton Kutcher?

Oh, you’re serious… this is your great project?  Well, I  hate to break it to you. It’s flawed.  No, really, it is. See look…

If I have a network of 100 people and I get 100 people to click the “link,” but there is another person that has a network of say 100,000 people and gets 1,000 to click it, they have more influence? I am far from being a math wiz, but I do not see how that person has more “influence.” They have a larger network, but a smaller success rate.

Also, you are looking at influence being based on clicking a link? Did I mention that? I promise you that somewhere right now, someone is setting up a contest that says “Wanna have  a chance at winning $1,000? Just click this link.” Oh, and that link would be the influence project link. So they get to buy influence, kinda like Bernie Madoff.

Bottom line, you’re measuring influence on getting people to click a link. You are way off base.

Well, thanks for reading my letter.  I appreciate it.  Also, I was looking to renew my subscription and wondering if I can get the Fast Company clock radio this year instead of the blanket? Is that okay? I mean, I do not want to influence you into doing it…

July 7, 2010 By : Category : Featured News Open Letter Tags:, ,
19 Comments

An Open Letter To CNN About The Nashville Floods & Social Media

An Open Letter To CNN About The Nashville Floods & Social Media

Dear CNN,

I have a good friend, who for some reason about 10 years ago decided to leave lovely California and move to, Nashville.  Yes, he did it for a woman. No, they are no longer together. Today, he is happily married with kids, and owns a Smoothie King.

He has been updating his Facebook status with info on the flooding in his area.  I had heard in passing about the flooding but did not really pay attention. That was until he started updating his Facebook status with links to videos and websites.

I thought, I should go check what was happening and get more info. I went to CNN.com and saw this:

Where were the amazing links that my friend had? Where was info on the flooding? I could find info on:

-Porn Director Seeks Office

-3-D Gaming

-Photographer Captures Arctic

..and then yes  I saw it  small references to the flooding in Nashville. With boring articles.

Here is my point, wouldn’t the page have more impact, more information and be more informative if they used things like YouTube and Twitter? Things my friend had been posting?

Here let me list some of them for you, people like lists:

Amazing right? Wouldn’t these videos grab you more and heck, be more informative? More “WOW” factor! More “POP”

Then you have Twitter, where there are real time updates and comments by people. Why is there no feed up? Here is a sample..

Again, comments from real people being shared by real people. I know you have that Ireport thing and your trying, but well.. try a little harder. Okay?

Seems to me your  missing the mark here.

Gee,   I cant imagine why traditional media is having problems… ;)

What are your thoughts?
Sincerely,

Dave Peck

May 5, 2010 By : Category : Open Letter Tags:, , ,
5 Comments

An Open Letter To Sony Regarding Social Media.

An Open Letter To Sony Regarding Social Media.

webbie

Dear Sony,

First, I wanted to make sure everything is good with you. I know its been a while since we have chatted. Actually, we have really never chatted. Though you did have Technorati reach out to me  in early March 2009. It was just before SXSW 2009. You probably don’t remember, I know your a really busy company. Well with E3, your Samsung LCD venture, and of course that exciting announcement that Sade has an album coming out for the first time in like 9 years No offense but waiting 30 years for that album would of been better.(I’m just saying.)

So what I wanted to share with you is an update on the partnership you did with Technorati just before the SXSW 2009. I know with everything going on you don’t remember it. Let me try to jog your memory.

You were kind enough to send myself and 9 other bloggers these really kick ass Webbie HD video cameras. All you asked is when we use it at the conference was to tag photos and pics with the hashtag #webbiesxsw. How could any of us say no? (Look we both know Julia Roy sure wouldn’t! I think she tried to steal mine, so she could have two.) So with my trusty Webbie HD I mad amazing, educational, social media  videos like this:

Pretty great huh? Fine, I suck at video taping. I get it. Okay, so Sony you may wonder, “why is this guy writing this letter to us almost 4 months after the fact? We aren’t sending you another free camera and you cant have a free PS3 either, so move along.”  Do not worry. I do  not want any free stuff, though if I were to hit you up for something it would be the PS3 Slim.

So back to my point of this letter. It must of taking some good faith in Social Media for a big company like you to the Webbie SXSW/blogger promotion. Not being able to directly measure the ROI for this campaign. Not knowing if it helped sell these devices. No doubt you could see the chatter on Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, and the other thousands of social networking sites. Yet, it is hard to measure if that chatter turned into sales.

Well, I have some good news for you. Social Media works. What you did worked. Let me give you some examples. I will do it in list form. People like lists!

-In the past 30 days 5. Yes, 5 families have bought the Webbie because they have seen me using at my kids school. Scary part is they all got the same color as me. So, now I have to put my initials on the bottom of it.

-At least 8  people have emailed me directly in the last 90 days to ask me about what video camera I use.  Of that I know of 4 people who have bought the camera.

-Facebook..where do I start. When I upload a video it has that HD logo in the corner. The number of people who have commented on the quality of the video and sound is crazy. I can not say I know exactly how many people have bought the Webbie. I do know that there have been a lot of comments and questions about it on my profile page and fanpage.(yes, I have a facebook fanpage stop laughing at me.) Done laughing? Here is a Facebook video example that got the parents fired up about the Webbie:

So, there you go. I can confirm at least 14 sales of the webbie as well as several more potential sales coming your way!! That is not a bad ROI for sending a blogger a $200.00 video camera. We do not even know how many sales the other 9 bloggers generated.  This is what I would call a success story, as well as a great case study showing that Social Media and Word of Mouth marketing do work.

Oh in case anyone at Sony sees this or who knows, maybe even reads my blog. No, I was not paid to do this. Yes, I got a free Webbie from Sony. There is your full disclosure at work!

Sincerely,

Dave Peck

Social Media Strategist

LSF Interactive

June 2, 2009 By : Category : Blog Off Subject Open Letter Tags:, , , , , , ,
0 Comment

An Open Letter to KTVU..My Local Fox Affilate

An Open Letter to KTVU..My Local Fox Affilate

Dear KTVU,
First I need you to know, I have been watching Channel 2 since I was like 5. Heck I remember the old theme song you know “There is only one..two!”, hear I don’t sing well, listen to it yourself:

Boy that was catchy back in the day. You ought to think about bring… sorry I am off on a tagent.

Look I am sending you this letter, not because I hate you, dislike you..though it would be nice if you played more MASH reruns, I do like MASH… sorry back to the point. In this day of people watching less tv, reading less newspapers, companies like you need to do whatever you can to stay current and go where the people are. I get that. So I was thrilled when I found out KTVU was on Twitter!

I thought how cool! I can send messages to the newsroom, get interesting info about stories your working on, what Ross is up to. I did love him on People Are Talking  back on KPIX.

Whatever happened to Ann anyway?

So imagine my dismay when I went to your Twitter page and saw this:

ktvu

It is just links to videos. I can see this on your site or heck the 10:00 news. It is well..boring. There is nothing interesting here.  No, there is no rule that you have to be intresting or exciting, you can do what you want on Twitter, as Eric Rice kindly points out. Let me give you a few pointers though. I will do in in list form as people like lists:

-Do not just post links it well to quote Mike Mcallen it is “spammy”

-Give us some behind the scenes information, stories your working on. Funny things going on. Tell us something we can not see on the broadcast

-This is important, interact with other twitter followers. I said “Hi” to you yesterday and you never replied. Heck DarthVader says Hi, and he is a Sith Lord.

-Learn from NBC’s Today Show mistakes on Twitter. They did exactly what you did with nothing but links, now check it out. They answer peoples questions on Twitter and interact, heck they make funny comments and everything!

-Act like your part of the community. See NBC’s Today Show above.

-Try getting Twitter involved with your news team. Ask for leads, read users responses online. Take polls. The Twitterverse is yours for the taking.

So please dont take this the wrong way, I am on your side. I just want to help you with the learning curve! I know you can do it.. cause well there is only one two.. ;)

Hope to see you on Facebook!

Dave

January 6, 2009 By : Category : Blog Open Letter Tags:, , , , , , ,
0 Comment