Connecting ‘social’ and ‘media’

An Ossning Social

I recently had lunch with a client and a guru. 

The client has made a name for himself in PR with the introduction of the most successful business PR campaign of the past 30 years, Watson Competes on Jeopardy!.   All those appearances made by Watson on Today, GMA, CNN, etc.; that was my friend (and his team). The Nova special, the New York Times Magazine, the Andy Richter’s wife having an affair…  I think everyone would agree the whole thing wouldn’t have happened without him.

And the guru is a semi-retired Ad guy who happened to work in St. Louis for a while, helping to launch a little campaign called, ‘This Bud’s for You’.  After 35 years in advertising, of late as an acknowledged ‘pundit’, our friend contributes to AdWeek and AdAge, popping up on panels and on TV as well.  We met him at the antique place he and his wife run while shooting a Research video (Precision Agriculture) at the farm on that property, Sun Dial.

The best part is, neither are the kind of guys you think of when you think of Advertising and PR types. There’s no trace of MadMen here. There’s no pretense or entitlement.  One thing that does connect them both is music.  They both play guitar, one still dabbling, the other feeling he’s still got the chops.  We just scratched the surface of the musical connections, but the initial jamming has begun.

There’s also an appreciation for architecture.  Both are huge Saarinen fans, with the PR guy working in one of his greatest legacy buildings, Watson Labratories, and the other having a set of six Eames chairs for sale.

I’m psyched that the two have talked about getting together soon without me, so the Ad guy can sit in the library surrounded by ‘the most comfortable chairs ever made.’

We formed a little club that we determined should meet once a month as able.  One initiative is to jam on creative for pro-active development of viral videos for beverage company targets.  Stay tuned!

The Bay Area Media Consortium

Earlier that week, I flew out to San Francisco on a mission to strengthen and define Green Ink’s Bay Area consortium.   I had lunch with representatives of a San Rafael production agency who have agreed (in principle) to become one of the first Green Ink Affiliates.  As IBM acquired our new client, DemandTec, this agency’s client of five years, I recognized that a strong, long term relationship was being disrupted. It would have taken the local company years to become an approved IBM supplier. What would the client want?  They’d want that supplier if possible.  Well, why can’t we be that supplier?  Literally.  We have one new project already that will allow our two teams to work together.

And then, I met the DemandTec clients and introduced them to our long term Bay Area partner-resource. The goal is to bring the strengths of these two suppliers together with another local partner, a legacy Coremetrics supplier, to create a full-service capability to support corporate marketing communications – locally, but with global reach.

After the shoot, I had beers and wings with my videographer buddy and an IBM Research client with whom I worked this year on a well-received, high visibility video: Cognitive Computing.  We talked about doing more projects like this in the future, showcasing not only the Almaden lab more, but IBM’s labs globally.

And then I returned the rental and made the red eye back to JFK.  Nice day.

As the Green Ink global network is further defined and strengthened, affiliates and clients can take advantage of a globally distributed capability, one that is cloud-like in its flexibility and ease-of-access, but that allows for local points of entry.  Our resources have become empowered reps.

So how do you put something like that together and launch it to the world as a definition of the brand?  Stay tuned!

We’re developing the press release.  My Business Partner wanted to know where the ‘news’ is here.

How’s this:

Green Ink Announces Bay Area Consortium

as media Companies define new business models

to best support customer desire for ‘locally grown’. 

With this farm to fork in 50 miles movement, maybe it could go in the ‘restaurant’ section?  Flexible menu:  a la carte, prix fix, or buffet style?

So is that the ‘sizzle’ or might there be an acronym…?  Anyone like the idea of a ‘GIANT’ network?  or maybe GIGANTE?