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Distraction and the Internet April 17, 2014

Posted by nicholas gill in distraction, internet, productivity, social media, Uncategorized, website, webtrate.
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65% of us get distracted by the Internet. Distracted form doing stuff by doing more stuff like emails, general web surfing and of course, social media. 53% also admitted that the reduction in productivity caused them dissatisfaction and unhappiness.

I can empathise. I’m far too easily distracted at present. I need to switch off. And now you can with Webtrate. Despite the site looking like it’s come from the 90s – deliberate given the context of what they’re trying t do I hope – you sign up and get a number of options to turn off all these distractions and focus. Anything from a simple timer to a complete lock down. Splendid.

Image source.


i like live guy November 24, 2008

Posted by nicholas gill in active branding, blog, brand experience, Dare, digital advertising, facebook, picasa, social media, social networks, twitter, vodafone live guy, web 2.0, website, you tube.
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This is Vodafone Live Guy. Live Guy is visiting 11 cities (well, he’s visited a few last week but I was just OOO for too long to write this) until the end of this week. Each day he’s giving away a Dell pooter. How do you get your paws on one? Find him using all types of web 2.0 wondery-ness. Why do I like this so much and why will it enter my new fangled version of Digital WTF?

1. It’s a great demonstration of a product proposition. Vodafone Live gets you and your pooter live wherever you want to. Rather than a-n-other web site, page, banner ad etc. telling you this, Dare (yes, them again.) created Live Guy to dramatise the live-ness of Live and bring the proposition alive up and down this great nation.

2. It’s beyond the site. It’s a blog, it’s a twitter feed, it’s a you tube channel, it’s a facebook love fest and it’s a picasa picture party with a Google mash-up twist. Multi-channel, multiple touch points. Experience Live Guy how you want. My preference was Twitter and that’s where I found out about him first and enjoy his regular ramblings.

3. Live Guy speaks. In the interweb world we espouse two way communication as the new currency. Interact with your audience. And Live Guy does. I asked him a silly question, he gave me a sensible answer. Made me very happy.


4. It’s not just a blah competition. It’s involving and engaging and there’s 11 chances to win the Dell pooter. Say goodbye to the dull registration form kids.

I could go on but I want to get this out before it’s over. Go find him.

Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn |nr_gill@hotmail.com

[daily dobbie] 12 seconds September 8, 2008

Posted by nicholas gill in 12seconds.tv, content, social media, twitter, user generated content, video, web 2.0, website, you tube.
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12seconds.tv is a bit like the love-child of Twitter and You Tube. What are you doing now style updates using 12 seconds of video only. I like it, but not so much as to port my love to it from Twitter. I am a creature of habit.

Found following @akispicer

Reach out and touch me:

Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn |nr_gill@hotmail.com

myfaveshop.com – a fusion of social networking and online shopping August 7, 2008

Posted by nicholas gill in myfaveshop.com, shopping, social networks, web 2.0, website.

I was recently approached by the people behind myfaveshop.com – a new online shopping site. But rather than clone what’s out there already, myfaveshop taps into the insight that online shopping is a functional, solitary pursuit and are trying to make it a much more social pursuit: think Facebook social networking, commenting and all that gubbins flavoured with the best shopping sites such as Net-A-Porter and ASOS.

Users can create their own dream virtual shop filled with the brands and products they love, get shopping ideas from other users by looking at other virtual shops, check out celebrity ‘wish lists’ and top tips, and look at product reviews left by other shoppers before they decide to buy.

I liked the fresh layout, the high impact graphics, and particularly the ability to get a Firefox toolbar so I can add brands I like on the fly – not unlike the life-changing de.licio.us Firefox extension meaning I don’t have to keep flitting back and for the across the interweb.

I got a little confused when setting up my own shop as there seemed to be a paucity of brands but then accessing the full brands list revealed more brands that seemed to be a little hidden. I was worried that unless I wanted to dress myself in JohnSmedley and Vivienne Westwood I may not need this site. But it’s not just fashion brands either: Molton Brown, Elemis, Mr & Mrs Smith, Heal’s, Smeg, Dyson, Orange, Xbox, and Olympus to name but a few are there.

The shop has a 3D interface and some funky graphics which make it feel premium and boutique and quite different to what’s out there. And differentiation is going to be important with 20% of all retail purchases soon to be undertaken online by 2010 (source: IMRG). You also get: personal profiles and messaging; comment functionality and reviews; customisable personal shopping directories; brand, friend and product search functionality; the latest news from favoured brands; the best shop highlights, celebrity ‘wish lists’ and top tips.

But, seeing as I’m not a massive fashionista, I thought I’d ask some colleagues. Here’s what Katie, Kate and Carrie had to say:

Could do with being clearer on the home page exactly what the site is about and what the benefits are of using it – for me, I have a clear repertoire of websites that I use for internet shopping and each are clearly defined and branded websites that I love and visit because of the value-add, so I don’t really see how this concept would benefit me. Seems to be a weird hybrid between a social networking website and a portal – it jars with me a little bit because when I shop online it is very transactional, I have a clear product in mind that I need to purchase and visit a relevant site to carry out the transaction – the inspiration side comes before, usually from offline publications or more specific websites specifically tailored to the product I’m researching… this seems to be for people who just fancy spending some money on stuff – there is perhaps too broad a range of brands and products, could do with being segmented more clearly.

It looks fab if you are the sort of person with a high disposable income and a lot of time on their hands – maybe an AB possibly C1 stay-at-home mother who doesn’t do the FB thing? TBH I just can’t be arsed to join another social networking site AND spend time on it! But looks really, really good if I had more time and money. I am not sure if it is possible, but would be excellent if you could set up birthday/wedding lists on it, so that people can browse and order stuff for you, like a wish list.

It’s a bit dull in the colour department. Looks like the Vodafone site. Look at stylehive – they do a similar thing with more charisma.

So, not entirely positive from my colleagues but I liked it and will see how I get on with it in the coming months, especially if they do baby stuff. What do you think?

inspiration anyone? June 12, 2008

Posted by nicholas gill in blog, brand, bring the love back, digital advertising, microsoft, user generated content, web 2.0, website.

inspiration, anyone

Just over a year ago, Microsoft released “Bring the Love Back” and received great acclaim. A year later, here’s the follow up.

Microsoft are looking to move beyond just the film and:

…we want to try and create an online marketing community and bring as much inspiration as possible to marketers and everybody in the marketing, advertising and publishing business, whether they are marketers, designers or developers.

The ambition is great. Here’s the site where it will come to life. In a bit of second album syndrome, the video itself is not quite as compelling as the original but then it’s just not about the movie this time. But it still has some amusing anecdotes that we’ve all suffered as digital marketers fighting the good fight.

dark or pure or just plain rubbish? May 19, 2008

Posted by nicholas gill in active branding, brand, brand experience, dark or pure, ghd, website.


I’m pure. Suspiciously so. Or at least so say the folks at ghd on their new dark or pure site. What sounded like an interesting ploy turned out to be a tiresome exercise that took forever to load as the site was so flash heavy although as the content didn’t actually do much I have no idea why. The “are you dark or pure” submission was salacious only in the first question which asked whether I’d ever cracked the whip. The rest of it was a bit tame. And then when you expect an instant answer (after all, digital has created real-time expectations), you have to wait 4 days to be told whether you’re dark or pure. Why?  And it went to junk mail. And then a few days after that you get an exclusive preview of… the new hair tongs!

OK, I knew ghd was about hair products. And OK, I know it’s aimed at girls so the hair straighteners were never going to appeal but the site experience and the brand experience wasn’t dark or pure. Just crap. Grey text on black background? Contrast, people, contrast. Pretty much no content of any use? A real shame as they have a point of difference in their brand expression everywhere else, especially their tone. An example of how not to do this thing called digital.

The only slight bit of redemption is the dark or pure models. Look closely, they both have the flash loading icon. Why? It’s a static image! And, breathe…

pure girldark girl

stuff and things 18.03.08 March 18, 2008

Posted by nicholas gill in adidas, blog, corporate blog, data, design, diesel, digital advertising, flash, futurology, my space, questions, travel, twitter, website.
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adidas diesel

Diesel & Adidas bring you 83 ways to waste your time (via Damiano on Twitter)

best sites

International web design and flash showcase

Times article on how to make the most of a corporate blog with lots of links for examples and reports.

quaker blog

Quaker Oats join the digital conversation

Cyberpsychology and Behaviour research paper entitled “Distress, Coping, and Blogging: Comparing New MySpace Users by Their Intention to Blog” via Bnox

HD video in ads

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