Guy Kawasaki Fireside Chat With Chris Brogan

March 11, 2009
By Lisa Barone in Internet Marketing Conferences

Well this should be romantic! We’re kicking off PubCon South in style with a swoon-worthy fireside chat between Guy Kawasaki and Chris Brogan. Michael Gray is seated to my left and already talking about chilled chocolate bars. Mmm, chocolate.

[On a side note, I just geeked out over how cool it’d be to have Guy’s domain. I know. I live a sad life. But you love me. Guy probably doesn’t after my Bruce Clay drama.]

Anyway…let’s go!

Brett introduces our two rock stars: Guy Kawasaki and Chris Brogan. W00t! Did you know Guy is on PubCon’s advisory board? I did not. That’s awesome.

Chris says this was labeled a fireside chat so he pulls out an “authentic” fire on his laptop. Hee.

Chris: Who would have thought that this blogging thing would have been so cool? What happened?

Guy: It surprises him too. He started blogging a few years ago. He resisted blogging for its first four years of existence because he thought it was inherently arrogant. It was all about the blogger and usually you could give a rats ass what they thought about.  So he stayed away. But he kept getting requests from people to start blogging. His first year of blogging was quite easy because he just restated everything he said before. Then it got harder because he ran out of stuff to talk about.    That’s when he started tweeting.

Guy says he was born to tweet. [Me too!]  He says he tweets about 150 times a day. He thinks all email should only be 140 characters with no attachments.

Chris: Those 150 tweets, that’s a lot of conversation and back and forth…

Guy: Twitter is a weapon. It’s a tool. He’s not trying to become social. It’s a weapon for him to promote alltop. He believes he has to tweet very high quality links that point people to very interesting news. It has to be high value so that people will tolerate his alltop promotion (promotion, spam, same thing) between those tweets. His mental model is PBS combined with QVC.  [I am completely rolling my eyes. I detest how Guy uses Twitter.]

Chris:  Are there other hints or tips you’ve learned?

Guy:  The moment you go to and you type in your name, your company name, etc, you find the people who are having conversations about you. If you’re a headhunter, you search for [resume] or [career] and you see people who are asking questions related to you.  You can answer those questions and develop a following that knows you as an expert in your niche.

He also talks about Tweetdeck. It allows you to keep permanent searches. He uses it to monitor his name and AllTop. His next layer of Twitter was when he discovered TwitterHawk.

TwitterHawk allows you to do these searches and then do automatic tweets that respond to them.  There’s an option where it can be automatically sent or you can choose whether or not to send.  If someone says celebrities are a waste of time, you don’t want to automatically send them a tweet about your celebrity site. It can become the ultimate spam tool. It costs a nickle for each automatic tweet.

He calls TwitterHawk an amazing tool.  He talks about a guy who sells vintage Camaro parts. You can set up TwitterHawk to monitor people talking about Camaros. When someone mentions it, you can send them a tweet about your service.  He knows a brake guy that closes 10 percent of those situations. That’s pretty sweet.

Chris: Isn’t that spamming?

Guy: If I do it, it’s good marketing. If someone does it to me, it’s spam. [giggle] He has 80,000 followers. If 5 a day get pissed off at him…that’s a lot of days. On any given day, someone will be pissed off at you on Twitter. If you’re Mother Teresa, someone will say you’re not Catholic enough. You can’t let it get to you. You have to keep doing what you want to do. If you’re transparent and you don’t make excuses, they’ll back down.

He coined the term UFM. It stands for ‘unfollow me’. If you don’t like what he’s doing, unfollow him.  Already have, Guy.

Twitter spam is an oxymoron because you voluntary follow someone. It’s like complaining that QVC is only advertising. You put it on. Change the channel.

Chris: Every conversation seems to fall back on to Twitter. Why is that?

Guy: I don’t know. The companies that succeed are things you never would have imagined. He never would have funded Twitter. It’s a stupid idea and it already existed through text messages.  If two people had come in and say they needed unlimited bandwidth and server space so people could upload ripped off content, he wouldn’t have funded it. And that’s YouTube.

Chris: Any idea I’ve ever thought was stupid, has made money.  Let’s talk about dumb ideas! You’ve had a lot of interesting jobs.

Guy: [he talks about how AllTop and Truemers were both formed. Unfortunately it was really impressive and I stopped blogging to really listen. You should have been here. ;)]

Chris: Speaking of reusing content — Reality Check: I got this book to review. I started reading it and realized I had already read most of it elsewhere.

Guy: Reality Check is the compilation of everything he’s ever written. Most business books are one idea stretched to 200 pages. That’s not what Reality Check is. Reality Check is 200 ideas, two or three pages each.

Very few people take the Chicago Manual of Style to the beach and read it cover to cover. It’s just not that interesting. [Lies!] But there will be a day when you’ll really need to know how to do something, so you’ll go to the Chicago Manual of Style and it’ll tell you what to do. That’s what Reality Check hopes to be.

The most sincere form of flattery in social media is how often your tweets are retweeted. That’s how he measures his happiness for the day. He uses Most ReTweeted.

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