Tuesday, 27 February 2007

Poker

The old cliche says that the two industries profiting the most from the Web are the adult entertainment industry and the gambling one. I am not so sure that this is true - I make quite a decent living out of other things (including AdSense, from which this blog is supported - it would be nice if you'd help us by clicking on the sponsored links!).

However, somewhere in the grey area between gaming and gambling lies poker, and it is hot for several years now. It is so hot, that some have expressed their concerns regarding college students playing poker online.

And indeed, after issues already dealt with here - MySpace, Valentine's Day and the death of Anna Nicole Smith - Poker makes it 4th in Lycos most sought after search terms. And this, for the 371st week in a row!

A Few Links/Answers
* Poker - how to combine tables
* Showing cards in Texas holdem

Friday, 23 February 2007

Michelle Manhart

On the top of Google's Zeitgeist for last week, is (as usual in such cases), Valentines Day. On the second place, a hot news story with something everybody seems to like: nudity, scandal, and uniform.

Michelle Manhart is a former member of the U.S. Air Force, who posed nude for Playboy. Apparently, for the American military establishment, things like nudity are much more of a shame than allegations of torture in prisons (or the mere small issue of violence and death in the force), and Manhart was discharged.

Which could be a great way for people on the force to avoid Iraq. Like those famous PETA campaigns of the 1990s ("I'd rather be nude than wear a fur"), former servicemen and women could appear on nuddies with the sign "I'd rather go nude than kill or torture other people". Nudity and scandals, after all, sell.

Update: I am apparently not the only one who smells a bit of hypocracy:

E. R: Bills, http://www.dissidentvoice.org/Feb07/Bills19.htm

Peter Rost http://www.dissidentvoice.org/Jan07/Rost17.htm

Thursday, 22 February 2007

Introducing BlogPulse

Blogpulse has quite an entertaining tool to follow what they view as blog trend indicator. It is not very accurate (what is?) and is more like Google Trends than anything else (two "terms" compete against each other), but it is still much fun.

We have probably made our share to help the popularity of a certain term in the hottest babes index: as usual, Paris makes most of the waves in the blogosphere, much more than Angelina (although she's on the rise) and the other beauties.

Wednesday, 21 February 2007

Bridget Moynahan

Bridget Moynahan, a model turned actress, is of much fame this week, because she announced she was pregnant. Now, if we were talking about death as promotion, it is also interesting to look at birth...

Last year saw the birth, and intensive interest, of several celebrity babies, including the mysterious Suri, and the less-mysterious Shiloh. Every detail about them has been recorded, from maternity dresses to chosen prams, from the unique place of birth (Namibia) to sales of Vanity Fair issue, where the elusive Suri finally appeared. In the case of Moynahan's expected child, the comparison though might be a bit far-fetched: she is not as famous as the two other examples, and her fame is mostly limited to the United States.

Tuesday, 20 February 2007

Anna Nicole Smith

Anna Nicole Smith joins those who become trendy post-mortem, at least as it is represented in the Wordtracker current list.

This interest in Smith has followed her for the later half of her life, with her large breasts, sensational marriage, widowhood, inheritance trial, reality show, and so on.

She wasn't, however, able to actually generate some positive affect, out of her marketing potential, perhaps because she lacked much sense of humour, or because she took the gossip to heart.

Monday, 12 February 2007

What's Hot on eBay: Nintendo Wii

Nintendo Wii is currently the most sought after item on eBay. The Wii, for those who are not in the know, is a video game console and apparently a very hot thing. In general, consoles and their periphery sell well and a lot, to a certain market (and the companies of course try to lure people outside their typical target group to get hoocked as well). As You can see in this trend analysis for Christmas 2003, this is not a new thing.

Further Links:

http://www.gamedaily.com/nintendo-wii - cheats, articles, etc.

The Nintendo Gossip blog http://www.nintendogossip.com/

Want to try yourself to sell the Wii after buying it through wholesale? The following sites might do:

http://www.toysnjoys.com/welcome.html

http://www.theselect.co.uk/

Also read the eCommerce Guide information about it:

http://www.ecommerce-guide.com/essentials/ebay/article.php/3640551

Wednesday, 7 February 2007

Groundhog Day

Lycos50 includes an entertaining account of why the term "Aqua Teen Hunger Force" is the second in their "Movers and Shakers" list, with the story of a panic caused by an ad campaign for the cartoon in Boston (more at Advertising Age).

However, the first place is taken by Groundhog Day on February 1st, again, a holiday. You don't really need a groundhog to tell you that there will be an early spring this year, you can see it in the very mild winter that we experience.

It would be interesting to compare, actually, the two events. One, something traditional, annual, almost boring, known to the rest of the world mostly because of the movie . The second, a guerilla type marketing that worked (if you have the money that Ted Turner has to pay to the city for the scare caused...) . It really depends on your audience: kids and teachers looking for ideas for Groundhog Day? 15-30 males, who are likely to respond well to the commando tactics?

Monday, 5 February 2007

Hillary is Hot

Hillary Clinton tops Google's search terms for this week. Clinton naturally "stars" because of her news appearances and her campaigning in the DNC right now.

Her official site is carefully designed, with the "right" colours (important in elections campaigning), quick upload, etc. There is also a campagin store.

Her Senate site is also rather appealing and designed to match a certain image.

But in fact, Clinton's web presence is far from being aesthetic. Clinton is a controversial figure - some people in the American Right, especially the Christian Right, would sell T-Shirts labelling her as the anti-Christ.

Her persona also sells other items, e.g. Clintonopoly Board Game
http://cgi.ebay.com/CLINTONOPOLY-Game-Bill-Hillary-Clinton-COMPLETE-NrMint_W0QQitemZ320076559315QQcmdZViewItem

Thursday, 1 February 2007

Cynthia Sommer

On the top of Yahoo! Buzz today is the story of a woman, who allegedly killed her husband by poisoning him, in order to get herself a plastic surgery and luxurious lyfestyle.

In some cases, news is entertainment
It should be noted at this point that terms appearing in trend analysis, and on news reports, don't always represent public agenda and priorities. Take this story, as well as other sensational murder stories in the past several years: there is Court TV, a service which usually airs sensational cases; or crime library, which deals with all kinds of sensational crimes. These are not "real" news, but usually entertainment.

Nevertheless, it is important to acknowledge this trend
For someone in marketing, entrepreneurship or business, it is sometimes important to acknowledge that the tacky sells, and that these cases interest the public, to some extent.

Further Links
* Crime Rant write about Sommers (Mid December)