Write Me a Guest Post

Over the years I have had a few people write guest posts here, but it is not something that I have pushed. Recently I thought it might be an interesting experiment – so I asked some folks on Twitter and received positive feedback.

What got me excited about the idea was sharing in your creativity. Like a zombie, I am interested in your brains.

But then it got me thinking … how do I brief a guest blogger? What do they need to know about www.servantofchaos.com and how can they make sure that their writing and interests are a good match?

So – if you ARE interested in writing a guest post, here’s some things you should know:

  1. This is a marketing and branding blog. There’s a lot of information about social media here, but it is in the context of the business of marketing. Don’t send me posts on using social media without a serious business context. My readers are also interested in your brains
  2. About 32% of the web readership is from the USA with a slightly smaller percentage coming from Australia. The UK accounts for about 10% of the traffic, with Canada, India and Germany rounding out the top five. Make sure your topic has an international flavour
  3. In addition to the web traffic, there are about 135,000 subscribers per month – make sure you link back to your own site to benefit from the interest
  4. Much of the content here focuses on thought leadership rather than “how to” information. Challenge me with your ideas or explain a new way of doing the same old thing
  5. Twitter only generates about 5% of my inbound traffic. More than 20% of web traffic is direct and Google delivers about 30% so make sure you write good headlines
  6. No pitching. If you represent a brand or a product etc, write about the problem that you are trying to solve rather than about your “stuff”. And write it like a real person. If you send me a brochure I will ignore it
  7. If you DO have something funky that you’d like to share with my audience, don’t pitch it. Instead, tell me the story of why YOU love it and do what you do. Make it real. Maybe then I’ll take it

Now, if you are still interested in writing a guest post, leave me a comment below, or send me an email to outline your thoughts. I’m keen to feast upon your brains!

Are You Contagious?


Each year, Contagious Magazine take a look at the top trends, most popular products, experiences, slick style-focused devices and all the other virtual and tangible accoutrements that help us define our lives. The Most Contagious 2010 is the place where you can download the report or just browse through the site, catching a nuevo-retro glimpse into the just exhaled creativity of entrepreneurs, activists, designers and yes, marketers of all shapes and sizes.

My favourite would have to be The Wilderness Downtown from the experience section. I loved it when I checked it out, and I’m pleased to see it hits the mark with the Contagious folks too. But, I have to ask … what did you love this year? Do tell.

Complex Problems? Join the Bucket Brigade

Over the last few months I have been on an adventure. More precisely, I’ve taken a seat on an adventurous journey. Our guide into the unknown is Bud Caddell who is not only driving the bus – he’s building it from the wheels up as we go along.

What does it look like?

Well, there are a bunch of emails, some discussions, input, thinking and creative stimulation. And at the end of this process, Bud’s turning it all into a book. We’re called the Bucket Brigade. Some of us read, comment and argue. Some of us just read and cogitate. It’s a fascinating journey on the way to solving one of the grand complex problems – how to involve an editorial committee in the writing of a book.

Interestingly enough, it looks like this book may well be the by product – and that the true nature of this endeavour, this journey, is to transform the very nature of what, how and why we come together to create business, solve problems and make the world a better place. Sound interesting? You’re invited too.

Maybe it’s time to get onboard.

Age of Conversation 3: From Social Media Theory to Social Media Practice

We have seen an incredible shift in the role of social media over the past three years. It has moved from an outlier in the marketing mix to one of the strategic pillars of any corporate marketing or branding exercise: 
— Drew McLellan.


Three years ago, I began a conversation with Drew McLellan on the topic of social media and crowdsourcing. Thousands of book sales and downloads, two editions and hundreds of collaborators later, we are pleased to announce that the Age of Conversation 3 is now available.

It all started when Drew blogged about a similar collaborative book effort and I suggested we get a few fellow bloggers to produce a marketing book in the same vain. Three emails later, and we had named the book and set what we thought would be an impossible goal: 100 bloggers. Within seven days we had commitments from 103 authors from over a dozen countries.

Back then, the marketing industry was abuzz about how citizen marketers were changing the landscape, whereas the second two editions have revolved primarily around the growing field of social media and how its methodologies have affected marketing as a whole. What all three books have in common is that they each capture a uniquely global vantage point.

The first Age of Conversation raised nearly $15,000 for Variety, the international children's charity, and the Age of Conversation 2 raised a further $10,000 for Variety. This year’s proceeds will be donated to an international children’s charity of the authors’ choosing.

It’s available in a sexy hardcover, softcover and even a Kindle version.

As the many authors of this new book explain, the focus may be on conversation, but you can’t participate in a conversation from the sidelines. It’s all about participation. And this book provides you with 171 lessons in this new art.

Get the inside running on how you turn social media theory into practice with the Age of Conversation 3 – it’s essential reading.

Social Media is Like Whack-a-Mole

Social media is a world of open doors. Wherever you look, you will see opportunity, challenge and a rush to fill the empty space. Sure you can plug the gap with a Facebook page, a Twitter account or even a blog. But in reality, social media shifts and changes with a surprising velocity. No sooner do you get a fix on the latest suite of applications, tools or approaches than something new pops its shiny head up, grabbing your attention. Meanwhile your recent favourite disappears from view. How quickly can you move? How do you respond? And where do you focus your attention?

In this way, social media is like a game of Whack-a-Mole.

The thing is, when it comes to business, you are approaching social media with a certain agenda. No matter whether your goals or objectives and business strategy direct your focus towards sales, brand building, HR or customer service (or many other touchpoints), you will want to be investing your precious time in a way that delivers against these objectives. This is true – even if one of your objectives is to experiment.

For me, even experimentation is foreplay for a form of operationalisation. I am always thinking, “where does this go next”, or “how can we make this work beyond me – and how do we transfer it to a team”.

But what do you need to consider when it comes to operationalising social media? Well, as promised, Valeria Maltoni has made available her eBook looking through the year ahead. Called Marketing in 2010, this free eBook brings a bunch of leading social media thinkers together to think through what it takes to go from idea to making social media work over and over again. Download the free Marketing in 2010 eBook here.

My chapter is entitled “Social Media is Like Water”, but there is plenty of great thinking, advice and detailed instruction from Jason Baer, Olivier Blanchard, Danny Brown, Mark Earls, Rachel Happe, Jackie Huba, Jonathan MacDonald, Amber Naslund and Shannon Paul. Hope you enjoy it!

Where I Will Be – Creative Sydney

cs_promoimg_3-web Over the next few months I will be speaking at and attending a number of events. Some of these are formal, some informal. It promises to be a very busy, but exciting time! I will be putting up a full list soon (and of course, you can always find me at the Sydney Coffee Morning).

But one event I am particularly excited about is Creative Sydney:

Creative Sydney is a festival celebrating the wealth and diversity of the city’s creative talents from May 27- June 12. In its inaugural year, Creative Sydney will feature a provocative talks program and event series at the Museum of Contemporary Art and The Roxy, Paramatta, as well as the launch ofCreative Catalysts – a list of Sydney’s creative pioneers.

Joining me on the panel for Come Together: the New Creative Networks on Wednesday 10 June, 6pm will be:

Tickets are FREE but we are limited to 250 seats, so please make sure you book your seat early.

Image: Amelia Tovey, Shoot The Player (Photography by Cara Stricker)

A Passion for Business

Some time ago, Sean Howard invited me to contribute to a group writing project. Inspired by Saul Kaplin, the idea was to gather a bunch of folks to write about The Passion Economy – what it means to us personally and professionally.

I am in excellent company, with Scott Suthren, Ellen Di Resta, Charles Frith, Mike Wagner, Mack Collier, Mike Arauz, Katie Chatfield, Alan Wolk, Peter Flaschner and Matthew Milan all contributing as well.

You can download the eBook from Sean’s site, or view it on Scribd. I hope you enjoy it!