Hacking Our Wedding: The Guest List

Well, I got engaged a while ago.

Luckily, I have the coolest fiancée ever and she let me make a blog about our story/engagement/wedding.

Also, in a quest to make getting married easier, I’ve vowed to use technology in any way possible. For me, that started with using Google Docs as a way to share and keep our guest list updated.

The gadget I installed is a pre-made gadget, but is a pretty good reminder for when we get on the doc and want to add people. Don’t worry, though… you made the cut… probably.

Beyond that, you definitely won’t “see” the ways we’re using tech to get hitched – that’s all part of the quest. However, there may or may not be a certain social media flare to our save the dates. However, check back for updates about how we’re using tech to make our wedding day easier (and hopefully more fun).


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?

Facebook Places: It’s All About the Memories

Without saying it explicity, as he was seemingly fighting back tears, Chris Cox (VP or Product Management at Facebook) touched on something mankind has either subconsciously or consciously done since the dawn of time – left behind stories and pictures for those who came after them. That’s exactly what Cox and the Facebook team feel they’ve started in launching Facebook Places. It should come as no surprise really considering the joke made earlier about Facebook employees’ love of sociology.

The example Cox gave was of a son or daughter visiting the spot where their parents, years ealier, had their first kiss. Their magical device would alert them to the story and dislay pictures, text and comments from others. Instantly, in that futuristic example, the son or daughter connects with a storyline played out years before. Sounds kinda cool, right?

This connection to the human pysche is what Facebook has tapped into since its inception. First, they connected students at the place where connections often mean the most – college. Next, in expanding beyond the hallowed halls of academia they provided a wider net for communication and sharing of experiences, adding enhanced photo, video, and interaction capabilities. In recent months you have seen Facebook connect popping up all over the Web, giving access to information from your friends and relatives regardless of what site you’re visiting. Now, with Places, Facebook is taking take connection one step further and letting users tell that story of their life even further – by tagging the places where those events took place.

It’s no giant leap to say eventually the tagging features will come full circle and you’ll not only be able to tag your friends in photos, but the places where those photos were taken, creating a scrap book of the places, people and thing you love most and leaving it behind for your friends and loved ones to find during their own journies.

What’s next? Who knows, but I can’t wait to find out.

Are Businesses Today Learning from the Underpants Gnomes?


I love Southpark. I’ve loved it since the very first episode I saw, which was on VHS. My friend Kyle brought the VHS over and I’m pretty sure we watched “Cartman gets an anal probe” about 30 times.

OK, enough anal probing. The real topic for this post is how businesses are waking up to the reality that they can’t just sit back and throw messages out into the ether anymore aiming at their target audiences and hoping they get the point. They’re moving beyond the easy way of doing business with their snazzy “phase 1: collect underpants… phase 2: ?… phase 3: profit” business model and are figuring out what that second piece really is.

So, what is it? Social media.

Social media, in all its forms (Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, Bebo, YouTube, etc., etc., etc.) offers a real chance to connect and create two-way communication while living in the brand. What’s living in the brand? It’s having a space where lines are blurring between what’s marketing and what’s real social interaction. That’s where today’s decisions are being made.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying that every company out there should be on MySpace and Twitter trying to create these situations… they have to ACTUALLY see the benefit in being in these situations, not creating an air of the situation, get it?

So, which companies do I think are doing this right? Here are a couple that you won’t find profiled on every social media blog:

Get on Twitter and you’ll see these guys. Get on Facebook and you’ll see these guys. Young CEO Derek Johnson (@tatango) and his merry band of plugged-in cohorts (@tatango_alex, @adrianpike, @tatango_amiel, and @tatango_andrew) are out there, every day doing the social media legwork that’s bringing users and coverage to their product. They’re not pushy, they’re real and people can tell that. Check out their awesome tool for group text and voice messaging while you’re at it.

J & D’s Bacon Salt
While it’s not a hard sell to get me to buy something that can make everything taste like bacon, J & D’s Bacon Salt takes it to a new level. When you arrive on their homepage you kind of get this feeling that you know these guys from back in college or maybe even one of them was in your fraternity – that’s what it’s all about. You can connect with them and because of that you listen to what they have to say. Because you listen to what they have to say (on Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, YouTube, etc.) you live in a world where you can make your broccoli taste like bacon, man!

Who do you think is “getting it?” Let me know in the comments or hit me up on any of MY social networks.