Sunday, August 26, 2007

SLCC Bussiness Track - Coke Talks!!

I'm blogging this from the Hilton in Chicago while sitting in the Business Track session with panel speaker Michael Donnelly, Marketing Director of The Coca-Cola Company.

My first comment on this is THANK YOU!!!!

Finally a company who gets it. And not only do they get it - they are acting on it. This will hopefully smash the rumor mills and give a big middle finger to the speculators. I'm so glad someone has finally stepped up and said "are experience in Second Lfe was a complete success, we had a clear short term plan and it did not include the purchase of a sim".

Some of the key points in the presentation

1. Community Involvement - Michael literally goes out himself and attends meetups, second life events like slcc, this going over the top and beyond just being involved with social networking etc.

2. The importance of an Integrated Marketing Plan - All I have to say is WooT - this so nicely complements my blog post ranting Chris Anderson's pulling out of SL. As I've said time and time again, and was even taken by Mark from Sentient, "If you can't drive a stick don't blame the car".

3. Long Term Plan - if you don't have one don't buy a sim. Come on folks the "build it and they will come" day is over. It's more then a great build - of course that may help the aesthetics but it can't be your sole project or even the highest on the list.

4. Listen and Communicate with the community, not at them. - This is just great. Getting in and being involved in the discussions. Coke came in and has encouraged the pre-existing merchandise and branding that the community has already brought in. That's viral in the works - don't go in and stop it. Yes I know there are some legal implications to this - but thank you for getting it and letting us continue our creativity and seeing it as a benefit.

5. Strike a balance between Art & Science - Again just great. I've seen amazing work directed from one or the other but the importance of incorporating both is so seeing the bigger picture.

Overall having the largest worldwide brand "get it" is what we need. Thank you Coke for taking the time to step up and say it loud and proud. This may just be the turn around of the Second Life negativity bus. Although in the elevator on my way to the panel I ran into a hotel guest asking me "what is second life"? Before I had a chance to answer her husband spits out "you know the virtual world with the falling economy that's getting all the bad press". Not exactly what you want to hear in the elevator, but I guess it's better then cheesy music. All in bad press is still press.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Sales vs Authenticity??

I've preached the importance of corporate authenticity before but do as I say - not as I do? I think as a sales professional it's hard to have true authenticity. The title of "sales" is holding us back as an industry - it has such a sour connotation. Time for a change - Christina L. Greene - Real Estate Investment Concierge, Purchase Assistant or maybe Home Shopping Expert.

As I get deeper into the new media world I find myself shedding some old habits. Before sales professionals were cheered for having the ability to hold the "game face" throughout a transaction. But now it's more about being authentic, being true to ones self, being comfortable with transparency, presenting the information with facts rather then the 100% opinion (although having an opinion is important - but support it with facts).

It's funny my first line when I take out a new client is "a. I will always be honest and tell you what I think of a property, even if it's bad and b. I drive like a bat out of hell - put on your seat belt". Agents in my office thought I was shooting myself in the foot by being so forward and honest with my clients. But that's just me - I'm forward, funny and even a little bitchy at times.

Secret - *whispers* "try being yourself, it might actually work for you".

About 5 years ago I had a chat with a fellow agent in the office who said my honest approach with buyers was a breach of contract (Massachusetts state law) to the opposing seller and what was the purpose of disclosing so much information if it was going to hinder the transaction and therefore my paycheck.

Are you kidding? Sorry to break the news - but yes many agents think this way.

If I as much as buy a pair of shoes that are defective I want my money back. Hell if I'm going to be liable for the sale of a defective house. It's "disclosure" if I tell you it's broken and you buy it anyway then hey I said my peace - and can get to sleep tonight.

Since buyer agency has become all the rage giving full disclosure to buyers is "sometimes" mandatory now. My approach is catching on, but with horrible discomfort. Brokers are waiting until the end of the transaction to slip a disclosure sheet across the table with a grin "oh by the way" kind of attitude. Then a sheet with $$$$ slips back across the table with the buyer demanding the price be dropped. Consumers are getting smarter folks - it would be good for us to as well.

I have countless letters from clients sent into my corporate office cheering my personality, attitude, and fun nature. How spending time buying or selling their home was fun rather then a chore. Shouldn't it be? Why would anyone want it to be any less?

If you love what you sell this shouldn't be so hard.

Friday, August 17, 2007

Linked In

Ok yes I was originally skeptical. After being orkuted, friendstered, myspaced, facebooked, so on and so on and so on - I wasn't excited to add yet another.




Ok this one rocks!!!! It totally takes the cake, the ice cream, and the cherry on top. (mmmm I'm hungry, time for dessert)

Come join me, I promise it doesn't hurt and I won't bite.

.....setting up my pownce next - i've had the invite for a few weeks =(

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Bloggers Challenge

A challenge of sorts.

In hopes to widen my blogging scope and give myself a lil spice and variety I'm going to add one blog onto my daily readings from each of my friends blogs.

So you know that list of favorites on the side of the blog? I know I haven't compiled my own list yet - but trust me its now in the works.

This is a great way to extend ones degree of separation to the universe. Wouldn't it be fun to map the world via their blog. =)

This will be fun!!!


Monday, August 13, 2007

New Role @ SLNN

My role at SLNN is changing to PR Director. Through the past few months my time has been poorly split between sales, marketing, and pr. So now I can focus my strengths on networking and spreading the slnn love (you know you want some *smiles*).

Although it doesn't take a genius to know I'll still be dipping my sticky fingers in the sales pot from time to time.


Sunday, August 12, 2007

Torely's Urban Classical

This is why I love Torely so much. He's just amazing - his pinkie finger has as much talent as the average person.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Selling in the world of New Media

I'm sitting at work, reading through blog posts, catching up with what my peeps are doing, and I get an e-mail from a prominent SL business owner that he would like help will selling something (vague on purpose sorry). This is actually a common request, am I the only avatar in SL with a sales tag over their head? I don't know. Although he was aware of a recent transaction I brought to the world.

I've debated on multiple occasions of starting a sales consultancy of sorts, not just in SL but in real life too. I get at least 2 phone calls a week for advice on real estate. In this current market buyers and sellers alike are so reluctant to make a decision that they seek 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, etc, opinions (which as a broker working with them is so annoying). The only thing holding me back from doing it - is the rarity of a fee attached to such "advice" and it would be too time consuming to do with the current job. Although I find time to blog - maybe I need to re-hash this.

So after this e-mail I realized the concept of "selling" in the world of New Media is completely lost, the focus hasn't gone past the marketing stage. With the millions/billions of advertisements via blogs, podcasts, and videos out there can you ever really develop a relationship with the individual consumer? Let's say you hit a marketing campaign out of the park, it goes viral, sales are up 20%, whoo hooo. But wait, what are you going to do to retain these new costumers? If the increase in sales is so isolated, is that really a success? How do you develop the long term relationship and commitment to the brand?

It's not about having a website anymore, how many consumers trust the information on a company website? How much control does one have over the consumers actual opinion? How do you get on that personal level with the consumer, get their attention? Then once you do gather their attention how do you "wow" them and make the slam dunk?

It's also not about the sleazy guy in the cheap suit, the "guy" getting in with the boys club and making the locker room close or the sales executive with the flashy business degree and boring sales pitch.

Everything is changing, the new focus can't just be on marketing - that's the first step but once you have their attention you'll need a plan to actually do something? Wow what a concept.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Why he gave up on himself

Just wanted to share my comment posted here:

Rather then giving up on Second Life - he gave up on himself......

my comment:

Welcome to the land of New Media. I'm sorry you didn't get the proper introduction or explanation when you first landed in SL. But like myspace, facebook, etc. Second Life is merely a vehicle into the Metaverse. You and only you alone drive this vehicle - yes you may pick up friends and hitchhikers along the way but still it's you in the driver seat. If you posted a page on myspace what would you have done to get eyes? Network with users, groups interested in your topic/genre, post your page on different sites etc. Second Life acts in the same way. This "build it and they will come" mentality didn't work with web 1.0 and won't work now. Marketers, developers, and content creators in SL fail to realize it's about YOU, not your build and not your fancy cars. It's you the writer behind the avatar we want to know. Great you have a budget and can build something spectacular. After I've been there and seen it, why would I come back again? I find it ironic when the criticisms come only from failed attempts. Don't blame the car because you can't drive a stick shift.

Very similar to first life it's about networking, meeting the right people, sharing your experiences, and learning from others. Now yes you're thinking I can do that in real life. At what point did someone say second life is a replacement of real life? It's a way to compliment your marketing needs, not be the sole provider.

The best advertisement in web 2.0 right now is viral. If you network and meet the right people they will do the rest for you. Good luck.

In addition...

In the case of companies, it's the actual brand we want to learn about. Maybe we're looking for the inside scoop on a new product? Maybe we're looking to find some trash talk about why the CEO made a certain decision, or maybe we come to test your product. In the end our curiosity of your company pulls us in.

It's funny how developers talk about not throwing the brand out in front. Not pushing the logo and banners. HELLO? Dude I came to your event, party, sim, whatever because I heard it was by Playboy - bring on the bunnies. (Just a note marc @ green grotto did and continues to do an amazing job marketing playboy. He was smart - he used the brand to get attention.) When I attend an event I expect to interact with the host.

The developers that can pull this off for their clients will have constant repeat visitors to each and every event. If you can feed me my fill, I'll come back for more - girl likes to eat. If not I'll just go eat at the other developers buffet.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

SL Stock Exchanges asking for security?

I've been following an interesting conversation via the comments on the this SLNN article:

Are the SL Stock exchanges unconsciously asking for more security? This buyout of the AVIX exchange is huge in my mind. I never personally trusted Investor Allen - not only did he come in with a load of speculation, but he never answered to it. And my contact with him didn't lead me to believe he was anything more then what everyone else thought (nothing personal I'm sure you may in fact be a great person).

Is Second Life more then a game? If facebook took a dose of steroids and went 3D would it be a game? I don't know......

But know I won't be investing serious rl dollars into the stocks anytime soon.

Should Linden Lab put restrictions on the stock exchanges? At least restrictions put some security in the investments made, although pissing some off I'm sure. If there are no restrictions what makes it different then online gambling?

Still too many questions.........

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

New Vaio Campaign - Remix Your Life

How many eyes do you think Sony lost in the first 2+ minutes it takes to load the flash page? I'm posting this while I'm waiting and it's still not done.



Still Waiting.........

uh oh I hear sound

wow that's a lot of waiting for?

let me try the next one

more waiting.......

i should be doing something productive while i wait. it's 2:30am, i can't sleep, i'm a little hungry,

i wonder if i could grab a snack while i wait? brb

*munching* still waiting......

so i wonder what the weather is going to be like tomorrow? knowing boston it'll just change every few hours anyways.

waiting......hmm let me go check on it

nope not done, waiting........

yea they've lost interest by now for sure, maybe my connection is slow - but i got fios - eh

oh i hear something

huh, not so bad - wait isn't there some advertising law that the black guy is supposed to be the sporty one not the smart one? (i'm black so i have the card to say that - i think, wait let me check)

is it worth trying to watch the 3rd set?

hmmm.....yea i'm thirsty brb

back and still waiting.......

so i'm out of the sitcom tv loop, anything interesting going on these days? i miss my sex in the city *sad face* only so many times you can watch it on dvd

so i wonder what the percentage of viewers that actually stayed to watch all three sets, just me?

still waiting.......

i feel like i'm writing a bad ellen degenerus skit - wait let me check the spelling on her name brb

i was close degeneres

oh i hear something

not bad - her beats were a bit off - did i ever say that i was a music major at BU?

huh i should have timed that, around 10 minutes?

Monday, August 6, 2007

Productive Day

Today was one of those days you end in a complete mind meld of confusion yet excitement. I apologize if this post is confusing, has too many thoughts, or is just random - but that's how things are flowin'. Stream of Consciousness begins now.

My morning started by chatting with CC Chapman - if you don't know who he is then you must be in some dark cave on a deserted island, or part of the non blogging and podcasting culture that is coming close to extinction. I would help you out by giving you a brief description but I fear I'd give it no justice so check him out here

The conversation was light, ended with some real estate chatter, as do the majority of my chats.

Quick story - I had jury duty a few years back, high profile murder case in Boston (which I believe I'm ok to talk about now) where a guy, in full daylight, walked into a shop, scouted his victim out through the staff, shot him in the chest emptying a full round, then stabbed him through every major artery, and ended the murder (in front of witnesses non the less) by jumping on the him before he took off on foot all bloody. One would think this was a open and shut case - they even had the bloody clothes he took to the dry cleaners and the gun. But as all in the world that involves human decision we had a hung jury for about a week. At the beginning of the case we went around the jury room and introduced ourselves briefly. The moment everyone found out i was a real estate agent on came the questions, "what do you think of our market", "how long will it take to sell my house", "can i sell it on my own" etc etc etc. So I hate to admit, but during our hung jury time - when no one else was allowed in the room it usually consisted of me giving real estate lectures on Boston trends. But hey I got a few clients afterwards. *smiles* That's what I call using your time wisely.

Anywho......that conversation, combined with the "sales roundup" podcast I caught first thing this morning, left me with a sales brain buzz on the current market, my experiences, the future, etc. One thing I can say now looking back over my years in sales is you better damn well love what you're selling if you plan on being successful. Anyone can fake it for a little while - but long term success is found in the heart and passion of the salesperson - not to sound cheesy. One thing I heard early on in my career that has stuck to me like glue is "a good salesperson will find strength in the rejection by having the passion to see the next sale". Well that and "fake it until you make it" - which is partially true, but wouldn't it be great to just "make it" from the start. Your passions can change, don't be afraid of change, if you embrace and accept change early on in the game you'll have a larger more successful outcome. For anyone in this stage I recommend a short, cute and helpful book, "Who Moved My Cheese" by Spencer Johnson.

This is where I am now in my career. I've had a very successful 5+ years, but I'm bored, tired of it, and this market is frustrating beyond belief. Am I selfish to want more? I'm watching seasoned veterans throw in the towel, rookies leave after a few months, and everyone just generally confused. Although I have the absolute ability to rack it in on these agents discarded scraps (which any smart agent is taking advantage of now, feast or famine folks) i don't have the desire to. I'm off buzzing about new media, second life, twitter, someone needs to slap some sense into me - but hey that's where my passion lies. I'm still on the fence whether I want to blog about my career progressions and the companies I'm speaking with.

With all this said I finally decided I'm going to start writing my first book on selling to the sexes. I've been debating on writing this for some time. The concept of selling to a sex hit me like a ton of bricks a few years ago. This will not only be a guide of sorts for sales professionals, but hopefully a general good read for anyone. I admit in my first few years of sales I did not sell anything to a woman - nothing, nada, zilch. I had absolutely zero closing skills with women. Sadly that didn't affect my numbers (girls why aren't we buying things other then shoes? kinda kidding, I own a ton myself) but I would quickly pass off any woman interested in my services to another sales agent and gladly accept a referral fee - wouldn't even waste my time with chitchat. Currently, on the side, I work in an industry where I only sell to women. It's amazing how fast you adapt when you're forced to. In my time here I've noticed the nuances of selling to men vs. women. This may not sound too interesting to some but you fail to realize sales happen every day in your life, even if you're not consciously aware. You're arguing with your spouse, you sell your side of the debate. Maybe your discussing the pros of your company with a friend/coworker/client, you're selling the company. Playing a game of Risk? hello you're selling the importance of owning Russia over Switzerland. Or hell I'm fighting with my mother over why she still doesn't have a grand child, I'm selling her on the fact shes not getting one for a while (sorry ma) - although the sperm before baby selling point is quite conclusive. *smiles* It should be an interesting read for anyone - stay tuned on that.

So..... let's see, Jeffrey Lipsky, better known as Filthy Fluno in SL, stopped by my house to hang this afternoon. I'm helping him with a new marketing campaign, etc. If anyone is going to pick your brain, pull out every last drop and throw it all on the floor (to see it's artistic flare no doubt) it's him. I swear he just inspires greatness within everyone he reaches. We sat down for about 4 hours? 6 hours? and knocked out piece by piece of designs for his campaign. Working next to someone that just gets your vibe and can say "god Carlie that just sucks" without me slapping him is impressive. His current site is, but keep an eye out because that will be getting revamped in the coming weeks.

All in all a great day. Now if I can only slow my brain down and get to sleep - it'll be even better.


Saturday, August 4, 2007

Cheating the twitter system?

Is this cheating?

JT Financial buys out AVIX stock exchange

All I have to say to this is THANK GOD - or the higher sl linden lab goddess??

I trust Arbitrage way more then Investor Allen. No offense but the way things started with him being under the magnifying glass spooked me out. But hell he's getting 8 mil L out of the deal - so I guess this is the legit way to run off with all the L.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Hells Kitchen

And no I'm not referring to the place in New York or the combat sim in SL. But the current temperature in my house - since my ac has of course decided to break on the hottest day this season in Boston. And yes it's Friday night so no ac until sometime Monday.

While surfing through my daily blog spots, podcasts, etc.... I stumbled upon this episode of Fearless Cooking, which is just so perfect. (brb) I'm getting a cold drink.

Although I wouldn't recommend putting the innards of a jalapeno in your mouth, or even handling them with your bare hands, check this out.....

Why would you want jalapeno on a hot day??? But gimme the frozen watermelon anytime.

SL Companies vs RL Responsibility

I want to throw this out there. I've been speaking with colleagues on the topic and it seems everyone really has a different opinion.

In the wake of last weeks stock exchange crisis, yet again another shake up of stolen money, the question that needs to be asked is at what point do SL companies and business owners need to receive real life checks and balances, or do they? Is this truly a "game" where all investments are seen as "fun" and for recreation? And if it's recreation is it then considered gambling? Which as you all know has just been banned from SL.

I've found on the smaller scale of things sl residents tend to be very generous and kind. For example I bought a cute top (hey I'm still a chick with a shopping habit) and when it didn't appear in my inventory the owner personally sent it to me and quite a few others. For content creators I don't only see these types of acts good business practice but also reputation control. But on the larger scale, where it really financially matters, who is watching out for the consumer?

If one puts money into a holding "for fun" with the hopes of getting out a big return, and has no general control over that holding or it's outcome, does that differ from gambling?

I'm interested in getting others feedback on this.

Opening Post

This is just my way to add to the blog world with my random opinions. As the marketing and sales manager for Second Life News Network - SLNN - - I get to network with some of the greats in New Media, so this is going to be a fun way of sharing my experiences and thoughts with whom ever cares to know.

Currently SLNN is about to publish our first print magazine @ SLCC in Chicago.

This has turned out to be an amazing opportunity for us. After Chicago we will be traveling the Second Life world conference roller coaster for the next few months.

Our current media sponsorship schedule:

SLCC2007 - Chicago (August 24 - 26)

SLCC - Dusseldorf (September 21 - 23)

IQPC Achieving Real Business Growth through SL - London (September 25 - 26)

Virtual Worlds – San Jose (October 10 -11)

Also possible sponsorship with:
Second Life Conference 2007 - Berlin (September 16 - 18)

QPC Second Life Marketing 2007 - New York (September 24 - 26)

Metaverse '07 - Munich (November 19 - 20)

I know what a crazy few months. I will personally be at most of these - so I'd love to meet anyone and everyone.

As I'm currently juggling my work with SLNN with my full time sales gig in Boston, I may not get to post as frequently as I'd like. But please feel free to email me anytime @

Stay tuned to my coming podcast (sooner rather then later hopefully).