Tag Archives: Marni Wandner

Mobile phones everywhere and no (free) public wi-fi!

No public wi-fi? For shame! For shame!

Last week, I wrote a post about how annoying it is to attend a ‘digital’ function, where there is no public wi-fi to jump on.

Equally frustrating is when you attend a function, where the conveners publish their Twitter handles or event hashtags, but leave attendees to their own devices to wade their way through spotty and/or inaccessible cellular signals to post updates to their social media accounts.

I’ve been feeling this frustration for some time now, as evidenced by this unpublished rant from Social Media Week 2010:

“Sitting at the Bands and Fans panel hosted by CMJ at Social Media Week and I’m pissed!

Why? You ask. Because there’s no wifi!

WTF!? How can we be sitting talking about the value of Tweeting and staying connected, when there is no f*#king internet connection?!

AARRGH!

I’m just saying. AT&T’s network is crap and I can’t flex on my iPad the way I had intended!

Hootsuite is unresponsive.

Twitter feels like swimming through molasses.

Facebook is kaput!

I am ashamed to be a part of this right now. Ashamed.

Red Bull Space – you should have shame too!

All this great info from J Sider, Marni Wandner, Robbie Mackey and Ariel Hyatt and no wifi!

Booo!”

Needless to say, almost two years later and not much has changed.

Businesses have not adopted offering free wi-fi as a standard.

Even if (as my good friend Rob Underwood noted in my rant last week about the NYC DMC event) the reason for a private wi-fi or an unpublished password is security, when you host one of these functions, setting up a temporary wi-fi network and/or password is a sensible thing to do.

With municipalities across the country looking at implementing free public wi-fi, shouldn’t businesses, retail establishments, cafes, bars and restaurants also look to do the same thing?

How many of we entrepreneurs select meeting spots bases on the availability of wi-fi?

Starbucks has undoubtedly made a butt-load of cash off of folks using their wi-fi (because we know their coffee is…how do you say…crap!)

Anyway, perhaps I’m all sour grapes because I’m on AT&T and their 3G network isn’t worth the technology it’s built on (damn you FCC for interfering with the acquisition of TMobile!!)

Or perhaps, rather, wi-fi is a really important element towards achieving a broader network of connected users and devices.

Whatever the case for adopting a free wi-fi solution may be, know that if I’m coming to an event, and it’s not popping, I’m putting you on full blast!

I feel better.

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Filed under digital advocacy, opinion, rant, Smack talking, technology

Brands, Bands, Fans and Mobile (updated)

I’ve been on one of my extended working hiatuses, so this will be one of my catch-all posts.

KiwiTech. Think Global. Act Mobile.

As a few of you may know, I’ve recently accepted a position with KiwiTech, a mobile application development company, as their Director, Strategic Partnerships.

I’m charged with identifying and forming partnerships with brands and businesses interested in implementing a mobile app strategy.

So far, I’ve roped a few brands in my web, including Morgan 4 Congress, Bang! Boxing, and MyBrownBaby.com. I’ve got a few more in my sights, including Marcus Samuelsson, Rodney Jerkins, and the Red Hot Boyz (out of St. Louis).

A few weeks ago, I was a panelist at Winter Music Conference at a session titled, Get Synched: Alternative Revenue. The panel, which was moderated by Jed Carlson, co-founder of ReverbNation, included Alan Jurivstovski, CEO and Co-Founder of MetroLeap, Angela Rose White, of David Rose Publishing, Dusko Justic, Director of Global Marketing of Sony Music, J. Read Fasse, founder of Honor Roll Music, Timothy Lincoln, Senior Catalogue Director at Music Dealers, Shane German, artist manager at SoundExchange, and Ivan Alvarez, co-founder of CdA Group.

During my part of the session, I talked about the increasing importance of a mobile strategy to help artists promote, monetize and distribute their content. Artists need to take advantage of the growing number of mobile devices capable of interacting with rich media applications, such as music videos, movies, HD audio and video, games and social media games.  The one piece of advice, that resonated most deeply with the audience, was the long term utility artists could derive from mobile apps, which, once they’re on a user’s device, can be used repeatedly to drive future messaging, content, updates and alerts.

Last month, I attended Social Media Week, where I spoke on Personal and Professional Branding to the Linkedin Group, Network 4 Net Worth. If you caught my post, I offered the attendees some practical branding advice, as well as extolled the virtues of mobile, which this generation is abundantly more familiar and conversant with. Their adoption and use of technology is virtually second nature, and brands need to prepared themselves to interact with a buying demographic that in inherently more technologically savvy and discerning than they have previously encountered.

I also attended a few sessions, including Bands & Fans: How Indie Artists and Baby Bands Can Use Social Media To Get Noticed, Get Gigs and Build a Fan Base, hosted by CMJ. The session included panelists Ariel Hyatt, President, CYBER PR and Ariel Publicity,  Robbie Mackey, Senior Manager, The Orchard, J Slider, Founder/CEO, Root Music, and Marni Wandner, President, Sneak Attack Media.

One of the takeaways from  the session was the growing relevance of mobile and social media for bands looking to attract and grow their audience base. Significant attention was devoted to the concept of the mobile device as the ‘first screen,’ and the importance of developing marketing and promotional strategies that factor mobile as an integral (as opposed to ancillary) part of the overall plan. Artists, like Lady Gaga, T Pain and Soldier Boy, who have effectively leverage the power of mobile apps to enhance their brands were discussed, alongside new and emerging artists, who were using mobile as an entry point into the music marketplace.

In May, I’ll be attending the Cannes Film Festival, hoping the convert the attendees, producers, directors and production companies to mobile disciples.  My primary goal is to convince them that, in addition to selling their films in multiple language markets, mobile as the next platform to promote, monetize and deliver their content.

With major motion picture studios developing ancillary channels for their content, such as all the bonus features found on DVDs, mobile represents a very real way to engage with consumers, beyond movie trailers and clips. Mobile represents a very real way of identifying and targeting audiences, in unprecedented geo-, device- and content-specific ways.

Cannes is just one of many destinations for 2011, that will have your’s truly evangelizing the virtues of mobile (and technology) to all who will listen.

And somewhere in there, I’m going to try to schedule more time to blog, so I can keep you updated as to my progress in real-time.

Dare to dream.

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Filed under branding