Category Archives: Trends

By Julie Blaustein

The Redwood Room

Back by popular demand! JETLAG, the social club that brings together designer fashion and travel, will be taking off again November 18th. from 9pm to 2am at Clift’s famous Redwood Room, a cherished San Francisco landmark, suffused with glamour, red-wood and Starck’s designer furniture. Trendsetters and world-travelers are invited to the night of Show, Socializing, Good Cause (Carbon Offsetting), and chic denim fashion by G-Star Raw. Dress Code: Tres Chic–Red and Gold. This ultra cool event is invitation only and admission is limited to the first 350 RSVP’s.

Go to Eventbrite and use the password RED for your tickets!

DJ Nadar and Playdoughboy, and DJ Huggie will be spinning the music, Nkechi Live! will cater for an unforgettable soul performance, and chic denim fashion will be provided by G-Star Raw. Sponsors include Arc, Bay Club and RedBull along with Media Partners SFAMA (San Francisco Fashion and Merchandise Alliance), Laura Loves Art, Eclectic a la Mode, 360 Fashion Network, Moda Epidemic and me, Julie Blaustein Photography.

Have you joined JETLAG yet? If not, what are you waiting for? JETLAG is the upscale social events for Trend-Setters, Entrepreneurs and Businesses. Once you join, you will receive invite-only to fun, exclusive events. Join Now!

Trendy Lime is a producer of upscale social and networking events and a social network comprised of “global socialites.” They are setting the standard in classy, exclusive events for Trend-Setters, Entrepreneurs, and Ambitious Professionals in prime venues of San Francisco.

By Julie Blaustein

A company’s failure is something that people don’t usually speak of, as if it were a bad omen or a skeleton in the closet. But, as FailCon ’10 made clear, failure happens to everyone, including those used to always being on top. The conference, held Monday in San Francisco, made failure appear to be a badge of honor. In the world of start-ups, failure is a way for one to learn lessons and to succeed as a result of failing in the past. FailCon ’10, now in its second year, was launched by event planner Cassie Phillipps of WebWallfower Events and took place in the Hotel Kabuki in San Francisco.

Steve Blank of Four Steps to the Epiphany

The opening speaker was serial entrepreneur and business school professor Steve Blank who was also available to sign his book, The Four Steps to the Epiphany. It’s about early stage start-ups and the four stages of growth any start-up goes through in order to become a real company. Right on target with the theme of the conference. His talk was based on the key task of any start-up; creating a working business model. He also provided some practical advice such as, “Don’t expect the VC’s to be lined up waiting for you to hand you money when you get off the plane in Silicon Valley.”

Jay Adelson of Revision3

Blank was soon followed by a number of speakers from very successful companies who spoke about what they learned from their mistakes. The line-up included Chad Dickerson of Etsy, Chrysanthe Tenentes of FourSquare and Cathy Brooks of OtherThanThat, who asked her usual probing questions when interviewing former Digg CEO, Jay Adelson. Adelson did not share too much with the audience that wasn’t already news, such as his departure from Digg as CEO, but he did share his thirst for being a part of the start-up process, whether it is successful or not.

Hotel Kabuki is a convenient venue, not only for its great restaurants in Japantown but ideal for a conference thanks to its numerous rooms that provided both speaker presentations and workshops. How Not to Fail at SEO presented by Vanessa Fox, formerly of Google and now of Nine By Blue, provided a great presentation of do’s and don’ts for SEO that one can find in her book, Marketing in the Age of Google.

The Audience of FailCon '10

A number of start-ups provided demos of their products and services in the “Demo Room” including: Footfeed, Near2There, FoodSprout, Wordchuck, SurfMark, Doochoo, CardMunch,, MogoTix, hiyakoo, MyNextCustomer, R/A Profit$, and Bee.TV. Throughout the day they offered demos of their product or service for those that wandered into the demo room during sessions and breaks. The audience texted their favorite using Poll Everywhere and the three favorites of FailCon were MyNextCustomer, CardMunch and MogoTix. MogoTix, the winner of the popular vote, provides scannable tickets on your mobile phone and for the event organizer, instantaneous viewing of who has arrived. Perhaps they will have some small failures in order to ensure that they will be successful in the end.

Want to show your support to your favourite brand, cause or event? Wish to reward your frequent customers and increase brand loyalty? Find a way to endorse your friends and colleaques?

Don’t worry, there’s a badge for that!

What Foursquare and Gowalla didn’t know, when they first created badges to reward user check-ins, was the massive snowball effect of badges they were about to start, now swiping over the social web like there’s no tomorrow. Everybody’s gotta have one.

Brand Awareness and Loyalty

As Loic Le Meur,  founder and CEO of Seesmic, reminds us, building your online brand is NOT about you, it’s about highlighting others. Badges work as a great vehicle for endorsing and highlighting others, while at the same time strengthening ones own online presence and brand.

Brands are quickly catching up on combining marketing efforts with game mechanics and social networking. One of the interesting companies in the space helping brands to achieve their goals is GetGlue, a social network for entertainment. Users can check-in and rate tv shows, movies, music and books to discover new favorites, see what friends are into, earn badges and even get a free copy of the sticker sent in the mail, for free. In September, over 500 000 users had created 10 million new unique ratings and check-ins, the official and authorized badges coming from major brands like HBO, FOX, Showtime and PBS.

As GetGlue explains it: It’s about emotions, enabling users connecting with the content. Check-in to Mad Men, anyone?

Connect with content, reward engagement and frequent users is also something CNN iReport aims to do by launching “On the campaign trail” badge for those participating in the iReport Election Challenge. More badges and surprises are reported to be released.

Even Q&A service Mahalo Answers has hopped on the train of badges, finding them a great and complementary way to engage and reward its frequent users.

Besides from encouraging user activity and increasing brand loyalty, badges can also be a way to create scarcity around, as to increase search engine ranking, of a brand, company or an organization.

Basno is a new platform that offers authenticated badges either to be sold or given away to users. With help of unique serial numbers, embedding unique invisible watermarks, and creating 2d bar codes for each instance of any badge on the platform, Basno aims to increase the value of digital goods through limited issuance of badges. The badges are stored in a vault, but can be shown on all major social networks.

Social recruiting

As many other industries, recruiting is also being disrupted by the social web, offering new ways to find, refer and match talent with job openings. In addition to competition from professional social network LinkedIn, now listing over 70 million members and one million company profiles, there is an increasing number of niched services like Endorse, helping people connect through friendly recommendations, and Twitter stream filling up with hashtags hunting for talent. How the yet to be launched Work Market, a marketplace for employers and workers with promise to make work work, is to disrupt the recruitment business, remains to be seen.

Founders of Estonian, a social recruiting service expanding the reach of job postings via social networks, are also creators of Talentag, your social CV online. Talentag makes it easy for people in your network, professional or private, to give you career boosting kudos in form of badges and thumbs up. By answering questions and giving thumbs up, or down, a chart with personality traits, such as cheerful, friendly, sophisticated, trustworthy, or giving, gets added to ones profile. Fast, easy, and yes, a playful way to endorse someone in your network. All endorsements can then be displayed and distributed on Facebook. Sign up with your Facebook or Linkedin account and see whether you also are to be endorsed as a Social Media Rockstar?

Talentag also offers event organizers a possibility to let event participants claim and display event badges on their profiles. A quick and visual way of listing my past events from Plancast or LinkedIn, for example.

As a good general rule of thumb when designing to include any type of social endorsements in your service, neither badges nor recommendations are simply just to be given away, they are to be earned.

Paula is online strategist and startup evangelist. She is also a mentor for startups at Seedcamp. She blogs at and here at
Connect with her on Twitter, LinkedIn,
Drop her email at paula.marttila[at]gmail[dot]com

By Julie Blaustein

Don’t miss the Social Email Marketing Event to be held in San Francisco that will bring together marketing experts, email companies and brands to discuss integrated email and social media campaigns. It will be held one day on September 17, 2010 from 9 am to 5:30 pm at Hotel Nikko.

Join our very own Brian Solis and friends for a day of insights into how to integrate social media and email.

This one day conference offers expert-led guidance on how to engage with customers via email and social media, including tips on how to maximize the impact of your campaigns, insights into new tools and services, how to monitor and measure the results, and trends to watch out for. This is the ultimate event for anyone interested in combining email with social media marketing.

Book Tickets here and HURRY as the Early Bird is only available until September 3rd!

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