Facebook/Google Battle for the Hearts, Minds, + Dough of Skype

A recent Reuters piece points to talks between Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg as possible clues to a potential buyout or partnership between the 500+ million user social network and the Luxembourg-born communications platform.

According to the piece, Facebook isn’t the only caller courting SkypeGoogle is also making a pass (or at least looking for a heavy partnership).

Analysts put a potential Skype + Facebook/Google deal between $3-4 billion based on an expected IPO (maybe still in the second half of 2011?) of about $1 billion.

Read the full Reuter’s article here.

Bank of America Tells WA/ID Customers: “You’re Real People Now”

I’ve been pretty vocal about my disdain for the fact that certain Bank of America features (such as their mobile apps) haven’t been available to residents of WA/ID. To their credit, the people at @BofA_Help have done a great job empathizing, even though they haven’t had a “fix.”

However, I got a response today that made my eyes light up.

Now I can bank on the go (well, in 4-8 weeks)… it is 2011 after all. Hallelujah! Holy shit! Where’s the Tylenol?

They Get It: Cole Haan

I’ll admit it, I’m not above putting something out on Twitter in hopes that a brand sees it and takes action. This isn’t because I think anything is owed to me (heck, I bought the thing now it’s my problem), but because I work in an indsutry where I find it absolutely awesome to see brands out there listening and interacting with their customers.

The other day I put my foot up and noticed a large crack in the rubber part of my Cole Haan boots. Now, these boots are seriously the most comfortable pair of shoes I have right now, so I was a bit sad to see this – especially in puddle-laden Seattle.

Thinking that I’d see if Nordstrom would respond to my Tweet (since that’s where I purchased the boots), I sent this little bit of Twitter pleasure out:

To my surprise, I didn’t hear anything back from Nordstrom (granted, I wasn’t REALLY expecting anything back from them, especially since I didn’t use their Twitter handle). What I did get, though, were a bunch of great reccos from friends of places to take my shoes to get them fixed (including Nordstrom).

Then, when I booted up my PC at work this a.m. I was definitely surprised to see that Cole Haan had responded to my tweet (very thoroughly):


Regardless of what happens now (whether or not I get a new pair or a fixed pair), I’m still definitely going to be singing the praises of Cole Haan’s outreach and customer service on this one!

It just goes to prove that when brands act more like people they can greately change the way consumers think, which is especially useful when consumers often think (and act) with their wallets.



Text/FB/Tweet/Email/Call/Smoke Signal Me

Confession #1: I’m addicted to technology.

Confession #2: I’ve seen “He’s Just Not that Into You” and I liked it.

Confession #3: I need an easier way to communicate with people.

Remember back in the day when you had to convince your parents to get a second land line so that you could stay up at night talking to that special someone? Remember when you used that same tactic to get your parents to let you install that AOL disc you got at Blockbuster video after they drove you there to rent some Pauly Shore comedy? Remember how that was the last time you were able to consistently rely on one form of communication with someone? I do.

Now, let me make it very clear that I’m not trying to be the old fuddy duddy who sits on his porch yelling at kids for their loud music and their internets… I’m really not. I am however, trying to be that guy that watches a chick flick like “He’s Just Not that Into You” and tries to pry some small glimmer of actuality from the movie – here it goes.

Drew Barrymore‘s character Mary spouts off this bit-o-wisdom while shopping with ScarJo’s character:

I had this guy leave me a voicemail at work, so I called him at home, and then he emailed me to my BlackBerry, and so I texted to his cell, and now you just have to go around checking all these different portals just to get rejected by seven different technologies.

Now, I’m normally immune to the “OMG, that’s totally my life they’re talking about” syndrome which many fans of this genre of movies are afflicted with, but I was like “holy Steve Jobs, she’s right.”

It really got me thinking about how I communicate on a day-to-day basis and how I regard those different avenues of communication.

Text – This is my default for my friends, family (those that text – which my mom just now got into), and colleagues. It’s quick, it’s easy, and I can do it while eating. Texting gives me the ability to think before I speak (yay editing!) and make sure my thoughts are well-written.

Phone Calls – I don’t have a land line, so my cell phone is basically my real-time connection to the world. If you’ve got my number, chances are I trust you enough to let you call me in the middle of the night. I’ll admit, I don’t talk to people on the phone much, though. My AT&T call list looks a little sad.

Email – Usually reserved for work, I actually don’t do much emailing with friends or family. Most my sent emails (from my hotmail/gmail) are to craigslist sellers…

IM – Ah, instant message. What once was reserved for late-night chats with my HS girlfriend is now the instant mode of communication with my friends. I use Digsby, so I can talk to my friends on MSN, Facebook Chat, Gchat, AOL Instant Messenger, and probably more… Needless to say, this can become a distraction, so I end up ghosting (appearing offline) a lot.

Twitter DM – Not gonna lie, I’m not a huge fan of the Twitter DM. It isn’t because I don’t find the DM function of Twitter to be useful, but because for me the people that end up sending me a DM also have my cell phone number and could just as easily text me – especially when you consider I get an alert on my cell when I get a DM.

At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter how or where we’re able to communicate, but sometimes I just wish I was using Wuphf .