Tag Archive: Facebook

Get something now, that you’re interested, for a serious discount: but you only have a day to decide!  

Thumbnail: HopScout video for Rivka Kawano

A video my wife made for a daily deal job website (vote for her!)

Sites like LivingSocial.com and Groupon.com have been popular leaders in creating sites that offer specialized, targeted discounts for those wishing to (A) purchase something within a certain niche, at a discount, or (B) promote their business with a special offer or discount.  Now, why would these sites be so popular?

  1. Finding something that people are going to buy anyways, but at a great discount makes perfect sense—and is the one sort of model from which buyer’s will welcome solicitations.
  2. Time-limits are one of the greatest sources of motivation for those considering buying.  This is a subset of the larger issue of scarcity.  If the commodity, product or resource in question is in great abundance (either in plentifulness, or availability throughout time).
  3. There’s a win-win situation involved.  Of course, customers are getting great deals, but sellers are also locking in business that they wouldn’t have had otherwise (and are getting themselves the chance that some of it may be paid for, but may never be claimed before it expires.)
  4. Studies have shown that people who are given more choices are not actually more happy.  Instead, having fewer options seems to allow people greater contentment.  Less buyer’s remorse, perhaps…  At any rate, having a single deal every day, seems to be profitable.

I’ve used daily deal sites a number of times: if the daily commodity is one which you know you’d use (and thus buy) anyways, why wouldn’t you want the chance to get it at a reduced rate?  Perhaps they are the enemy of careful planning—but even that’s a hard one to defend.

Niche daily deal sites are popping up all over. Hopscout.com, for example, promotes daily deals on nostalgic and retro (no battery) toys.  My wife has put together a viral video application to work in a fairly good position (http://apps.facebook.com/involver_krohuevx/feature/1572247/content/231249257) they have to offer.  (The job is nice enough that you can tell the company is doing well).  Make sure to vote, if you see her video!

What have your experiences been with daily deal sites?

[Editor’s Note: This article caused some inappropriate offense when it was written and needs some serious work.  Please check back later for an updated version.]

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A few months ago, I noticed a surge in articles about how Google was cutting down on its special benefits for employees. Even though the level of employee benefits was astronomically out of proportion to working at any other job, it definitely had something going for it.

To these articles (Belt tightening articles about Google) I say:  Cutting perks, how sad.”  I always thought it was cool (as I understood it) that Google took the stance that:

We take care of the employees first and the employees will take care of the customers.

I definitely can see the logic there, and if you have the money to it, then great!  Sounds like they don’t have the money to do it anymore.  But there’s nothing like employee loyalty to really make things work, because having to fight uphill against people who don’t want to be there will always be bad in the end.

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Following (and the recent hullabaloo about WordPress‘ new for-pay “VideoPress” upgrade) yesterday’s blog about some new video-audio sites-services available online, I came across another one.  A friend, colleague and former classmate of mine recommeneded something called Animoto.com, which allows videographers, animaters and the average-joe alike to make something, he said, really quite impressive.

And I’ve really liked the samples I’ve seen (though there’s room for improvement—especially considering the lack of professional human involvement likely in most of them.)

What are these samples, you ask?

Well—basically—the Animoto service (based on free, $5.00 and $30 or something thereabouts fees, I believe, as of the time of writing this) will take your photos from upload (or from Flickr, Facebook, or other social photo sharing site) and incorporate them into a slideshow against your own music—or theirs—whilst analyzing the musics beats and other facets to time the slideshow’s transitions/effects with it. You can, apparently, tweak photos/timing/etc after the fact—and include some video.

So—while I’m not buying taglines this year, such as the “end of slideshows” that this proclaims, I do think that it’s worth taking a peak at if you’re doing slideshows for personal—and maybe professional use.

If you’ve tried this, what do you think?

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The first thing I’ll point out is that video is beginning to become more than just the “hot” new thing; it’s a “keeping up with the Jones’ thing” now for business.  YouTube, I hear, is the second largest search engine—and is used for posting not only video, but audio (without real video with it) or even text-based things (with information textually in the description only).

More and more companies are offering their services for web-based video construction.  Let me highlight a couple.

1. Epipheo Videos

The business creates videos for businesses on the web, using an animation style, and with a focus on a solid-core nugget of an idea.  So much focus is put on this central nugget, that the name of the company is actually an amalgam of video and epiphany.

2. iScript

This one doesn’t rely on voice-synthesizers, but takes your screenplay, and has (real) actors record it into a listen-able mp3 which you can then send to Hollywood script reviewers who will supposedly be more apt to listen to your screenplay than read it (even though the latter is faster) because they’ll take it with them when they go jogging and such.  I’m one to take advantage of spare moments doing menial tasks listening in to podcasts and such, but I really am not sold that “Hollywood is listening” as their tagline asserts.


3. Xtranormal | Text-to-Movie.

This is sort of silly—but it allows users to make movies with pre-made talking avatars, 3D, basically, with ability to create scenes of dialogue, with what look to be pre-defined accents, poses, characters, settings, etc.—all read by a speech synthesizer which shows how technology is becoming uncannily better.  I’ve seen a couple of these before I realized what they were, but first sat up and noticed when this was posted on a friend’s Facebook:

Another funny one on the site, was this movie, about a woman held captive—in a action-movie-style parody.


Unfortunately, I haven’t tried any of these—but just came across them, so don’t consider anything I say an endorsement, or even a critical review: it’s really all just a flag/alert to some interesting new ideas out there.

Flavors.Me diagramA solution for small businesses and the personal brandflavors.me? This personal gateway is a single hub for your social media accounts—Twitter, Facebook, Flickr and more, all displayed in a single page, labelled and branded the way you want it.

As more and more businesses are opening up to the idea of using the Internet, its usually social media—the new path of least resistance—that becomes the first place they’ll start.  Often times companies will be more likely to have Facebook pages or Myspace accounts before they’ll have an actual “official” webpage: one thing that builds on this is the fact that the companies out there that are starting often will begin with something like a Facebook page, simply because this is easier than hiring an XHTML, CSS, JavaScript and Design expert to put together a full-on site.

What this means is that information on Facebook and social media sites is often more likely to be accurate and up to date, than “official news” displayed in (print and even) web. Flavors.me comes forward as a place to aggregate that all into a single customizable front-page, and aggregate all that disparate social sharing (like videos, photos, text updates and more) and then put them together, basically as a (or rather the new breed of) official web-page.

So take a look.  There is a rather inspiring gallery of Flavors on their website that include a number of personal/professional and even a few business entries.  One that caught my eye, was a small restaurant from Toronto that was sharing their menu online as well as updates to their ongoing business life and creative cook-ups.  The restaurant was located in my hometown, and as such, their social media was quite effective—my wife and I have decided to try to visit them next time we’re up that way.

Feel free to leave me comments on my blog with ideas for things you’d like to see articles about, things that are trending or other related points or facets that you are curious about.  Do you have questions about things?  Or technology things that don’t make sense to you —?  Or don’t understand and have questions about—?

Let me look into things for you—so feel free to ask!Questions?

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6 Career-Killing Facebook Mistakes – Investopedia Slideshows.

Heard things about Facebook and how it can damage your career search?  Maybe you have…but have you heard specifically what to avoid?  Here are six things to avoid doing that you don’t want to do with your social media accounts.

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