Quick Thoughts on Obama's State of the Union

People who know me would know that I'm not too big on political commentary. I don't like to talk about politics, and I would like to keep it that way. Therefore, I'm just going to give a few thoughts on this blog of what I saw in the State of the Union yesterday. So, when I say "quick" I really mean quick.

I will admit, I didn't watch the whole SOTU address. I was switching in between watching this, and the Washington Capitals vs Anaheim Ducks hockey game. But, as soon as the Caps scored 3 goals in under 3 minutes in the 3rd period, the game wasn't competitive anymore, so I decided to check out what the Prez had to say...

I have tons of respect for Obama. He is a huge inspiration to many in this country (including myself) because he's the first black president, he's a great speaker, and he has lots of great plans. And even though I am registered to vote as a Republican, I voted for him in '08. And, from listening to some of his speech yesterday, he seems like he has lots of great plans to turn around the economy, healthcare, the environment, etc. But having a plan, and talking about a plan is one thing... actually getting it done is another. I know that the last administration put him so far down a hole that it's gonna be hard to dig out of, but since we live in a "microwave society" where we have to get everything right now... Americans have already gotten impatient. And, unless he can really convince people that this country really is improving... his chances of a re-election in 2012 is going to be highly damaged... so much so, that not even his good public speaking skills can save him. People voted for him in '08 because through him, he has offered hope and inspiration to millions. But things are so bad in America right now, that most people would rather see things getting done rather than hearing great oratory.

I'm gonna end it right there. (I did say this was gonna be short). I know millions already feel like this about Obama, but I just thought I'd let everyone know where I stand regarding it. And since he gave his first SOTU yesterday, I thought this would the perfect time to do it. I can talk about this more, but like I said, I honestly don't like to get all touchy-touchy political on people, since politics is always a highly sensitive subject matter. Therefore, I'll just leave it at that.

Honestly, if I'm not talking about motivation and business, I'd rather talk about doing pushups, the Superbowl, or other sports... Hey, maybe I will! (Keep an eye out for future posts).



OUTRAGEOUS Advertising and Marketing 101

I went to Orlando last weekend to attend Bill Glazer's Outrageous Academy and Workshop. I was invited to this workshop because I entered Bill's YouTube contest, and won 2nd place. I accepted the invitation, and definitely decided to check out what the Glazer-Kennedy experience is about. It's rare that people get this opportunity to learn from renowned experts in such a great value, so I decided to take it (I still had to pay for room and travel, but that in itself wasn't bad, since I bundle-booked them...).

But, to get back to the story... before I headed to the Workshop, I decided to read Bill's book "Outrageous Advertising that's Outrageously Successful". It had a lot of ground breaking ideas that a lot of business owners can use, most especially in direct marketing. Bill definitely gave a lot of great examples to capture the attention of the customer, in many facets of business, such as when it comes to sending your mailer, how to write your advertising, etc. I was surprised what he put in that book, because a lot of his techniques are unconventional techniques that rarely many people use, and the fact that he shared them in a $20 book was rather odd. But, I'm grateful to him that he shared it. :-)

Now on to the Workshop. I would say that it was definitely worthwhile. I was grateful that I got invited to this, because there was such a wealth of information in that whole weekend. I particularly enjoyed the first two days, in which Bill and his partner Dan Kennedy did most of the teaching, where he showcases lots of his OUTRAGEOUS examples first hand. And as far as advertising, they really are pretty outrageous. Everyone who knows me knows I'm usually the one to think of "out-of-the-box" ideas, even I was pretty impressed with what they taught. In fact, during the weekend, I came up with a whole new idea that was spawned by a couple of their ideas that may really capture the attention of the college market, through mail. (And my fellow speaker colleagues in the college market know exactly how hard it is to capture the college market today with ordinary direct mail and brochures). And, I have a good feeling that my idea will work, because it's so crazy different and just totally stands out that it just might be crazy enough to work. Not to mention, it's related to one of the things in college that most college students love (or should I say, eat). I'm not gonna tell exactly what my "idea" is in this entry because it's still in it's "development" stage, so I'll blog about this in a future entry. Although, I will say that did send a "prototype" of this idea on Tuesday to Bill to immediately show him the idea.

But, those beginning days of the seminar were pretty good, because it was content rich! The rest of the seminar brought in other speakers so they can either entertain, tell about their experiences with Glazer-Kennedy, hock their wares, or all of the above. But all in all, it was a great weekend.

The best part is, that a lot of the stuff that was taught can be applied to ANY business. Most in attendance were insurance salesman, retail managers, online marketers, etc. I'm in the speaking business, and I've gotten a few ideas on how to help myself in my current business. But, if in the small chance that what I'm doing now, simply doesn't happen to work out (which I'm not counting on), I know for sure that I can apply some of this stuff to whatever field I'll transition to. So, it's definitely great that I went to this. And for those of you who are have a chance to get Bill's book, or attend a Glazer-Kennedy event, I say you go for it!

I will say, that I did have a slight disappointment about the Glazer-Kennedy experience. I was hoping that they would also show the "Rhymes Altering Perception" (R.A.P.) video that won 2nd in their YouTube contest. It was pretty outrageous, with a pretty nice rap that ethically promoted my stuff, while at the same time, carefully alluded and made fun of a lot of things, so I was rather disappointed that it wasn't given a chance to be shown. It would have definitely helped me sell a few CDs and books I'm sure, and get my message out there. But, in case you haven't seen my video, definitely check it out below...

But congrats to my Aussie buddy Greg Gillespie for winning the contest. Can't say he didn't deserve it (because he did). He used Google/Search Engine Optimization to get more hits than me, so he won. You can check out his video (as well as the other "Outrageous" videos) in the Glazer-Kennedy YouTube page (under "Favorites").

So in conclusion, I do recommend this workshop, as well as Bill's book. Like I said, it has a lot of outrageous and advanced marketing techniques that are so out there, that they are just crazy enough to work.


R.I.P. MySpace

I have to admit, I have really neglected this blog during the past few months. When I started this blog last August, I posted dozens of posts in that month, and afterward, I have just seemed to have gotten a little negligent. Well, those days are going to change. It's not likely that I am going to post as much as I did at that August, but I do promise to post a little bit more than I have been. And it all starts right now...

As I said, I haven't been posting much, but when I have been posting, it has mostly been to eulogize some of the notable people that have died at that time (such as Ted Kennedy, Abe Polin, etc). And this particular post will continue in that tradition, and will be to eulogize something else... which is MySpace.com.

I know that I might be a little bit late in saying this, but during the past few months, I personally experienced how far down MySpace has fallen...

In the mid 00s, MySpace was the biggest thing going in Social Networking, beating out the likes of Friendster, AsianAvenue, BlackPlanet, Bebo, and whatever else was out there (even Facebook, when they were strictly just for schools, colleges, and alumni). I started a myspace personal account in 2005 to connect with some of my friends in high school, and some other people I've connected with on the Internet, and thought it was pretty cool. About more than a year later, I started a music profile to promote my motivational CD "The ULTIMATE Crash Course". I was able to build the network in that particular profile to an astounding 25,000+. And from there, I was able to let people listen to snippets of my CD, promote some of my motivational pieces/videos, do a R.A.P., and even sell a few CDs here and there. What I thought was cool about myspace, was that I found a way (using a friendbot) to greet everyone a happy birthday the Monday before there special day. And with that, I gained a lot of appreciative "friends" who truly wanted to connect with me.

But herein lies the problem. MySpace had a flaw in their system, which made it easy for people, hackers, and advertisers to put viruses in your computer (whether knowingly or unknowingly) through scripts, and other technical jargon I don't understand. People started getting abusive. Therefore, MySpace had to make drastic changes to their system so people who abused it can't get as much out of it anymore. Problem is, they took away a lot of what some of us law-abiding users deemed beneficial. For example, people with more than 5000 friends can't view the birthdays anymore, so not only can the friendbot that I used pull out who has a birthday in a week, but I (the human being) can't even see who has a birthday anymore. This, among a lot of the other things (like the fact that a lot of their "new(er) stuff" like application integration, status feeds, and "the lite version", was late to the party and discovered by Facebook months beforehand) made people not really care about their site anymore. Personally, I've only logged onto myspace twice THIS MONTH. I used to log into it everyday. And, when I do log into myspace, all I get in my inbox are hundreds of event invites to events that I'm not going to, ingenuine messages that I can't read, as well as spam that everybody (including myspace themselves) send out. Arrgh! I used to get tons of meaningful messages everyday from people thanking me for what I've done, and I don't even get those anymore... because I couldn't really give them a reason to.

Not to mention, MySpace is too commercialized now. Even more-so when Rupert Murdoch bought it. Facebook is commercialized too, but all these pop-ups and blatant sponsorship ads in videos and music players on myspace totally get in the way and take away from the experience. In Facebook, most of the ads that lag your computer are in the applications. And, you don't have to add those if you don't want to.

It's really a shame that MySpace fell as far as it did. Don't get me wrong, people are still using it, and it's still ranked pretty high in alexa.com (with a ranking of 17). But, twitter has now officially passed it (with a ranking of 12), and Facebook is destroying it (with a ranking of 2, only behind Google)! It stinks too... because like I said, I have built a 25,000+ following on myspace because it was the next big thing in 2006. But, since nobody really cares about myspace anymore, and not as many people log into it... it doesn't matter as much. You can't really connect with people as well on there anymore.

In closing... I just wanted to say R.I.P. Myspace. Kind of makes me wonder if MySpace inventor Tom has a Facebook.

(Feel free to add me on the other social networking sites out there...)
Facebook: http://facebook.com/Obedoza
Twitter: http://twitter.com/ObeCorp
LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/john-obedoza/19/742/ba0