A bleary-eyed blogger on Wall Street: more thoughts from a week in NYC and the Syndicate conference
The second installment of a journalist-blogger's somewhat patchy recollections of a hectic week in New York.
The trouble with Thursday last week was that my Wednesday was still going strong. The Syndicate conference finished Wednesday, and somehow afterwards I got caught up with a motley crew of RSS company execs and an investment banker or two.
I seem to remember it was all Bill Flitter's fault. Bill is the chief marketing officer of Pheedo, which serves ads on RSS feeds and also offers behavioral marketing services and analytics. Bill is a big fan of SiliconValleyWatcher and so is his friend, Tom O'Neill, managing director at Summit Private Capital Group. Bill invited me to join his merry band for a meal and a drink. Little did I know it would be 5am before my head hit the pillow.
A fun time was had by all - thanks Bill! Also, I must mention Rok Hrastnik, who by midnight had been dubbed “The Rok of Slovenia.” Rok, just 23 years old, is an astounding character and already a seasoned entrepreneur. He is an expert in online marketing techniques as E-commerce Manager at Studio Moderna in Slovenia.
By 10.45am Thursday I was finally awake, and realized I had to be downtown at noon at Financial Dynamics to talk to this large Wall Street PR firm about blogging. Financial Dynamics is where my friend Lauren Stein works as Assistant Vice President. Lauren had asked me to come in and chat to her colleagues about blogging and how companies are looking to use it in marketing/promotional activities.
I have been doing a lot of these types of meetings, sharing what I've learned so far, talking about some of the questions that blogging creates, and discussing how there are so many answers that we don't know yet. That's what makes it interesting. I also pointed out that Silicon Valley companies are not ahead of the rest in using these technologies; this is still very early days for everyone.
I said that blogging doesn't allow for spin. If you can't walk the walk, then however much you talk your talk, you will not be read. Marketing speak doesn't fly in this world. But if you give as much value as much as you can, the world will beat a path to your door. For that reason, blogging is the best form of promotion bar none.
A pleasant walk amid unpleasant memories
I then spend a pleasant afternoon wandering alone along the waterfront parks and observing the rebuilding of the devastated WTC site. I remember how different it looked when I was here just five days after the attack, helping out my colleagues in the Financial Times New York HQ.
The ruins were still smoking and the downtown area was covered in several inches of powdery ash, as people shuffled stunned and silent through the narrow streets. Throughout Manhattan, the fire stations were covered in messages and flowers.
Walking along a street you would suddenly come across candle-lit shrines to the fallen, walls covered in fliers with photos of lost family and friends, asking if anyone had seen them. Those photos and descriptions of the missing personalized the tragedy like nothing else.
Now, the district is sunny, bright, and new, and multiple memorials are there. But the walls of chiseled names don't hold the same emotional impact as did those missing person fliers taped to the walls.
The Flickricious Wists.com
I head over to my buddy David Galbraith's place, just off Wall Street, where I'm staying the night. Dave shows me some of the enhancements he's made to Wists.com, a very clever, slick but simple way to create visual bookmarks of favorite things. Dave has been adding more features such as an easy way to add images to blog posts and publish in just a few clicks. Dave could be onto a winner here and he already has Gawker Media using it and quite a few others sniffing around.
Find out what happened the day before in Part Three: Wednesday--Moderating the mother of all panels at Syndicate (guess how many daily feeds uber-blogger Robert Scoble reads? 1340!)
Find out what happened the next day in Part One: