Things Marketers Need to Just STOP Doing

In general, Marketing is a Good ThingTM. It’s how we learn about new products. It’s where we get info on how to differentiate between products. It can help us decide a particular product’s suitability for specific purposes.

The folks in Marketing in the IT industry often take a lot of flak. There are several reasons for this.

IT is, by its very nature, technical. The vast majority of folks in Marketing don’t have technical backgrounds. Also, many Marketing folks have never been the customer for the product they’re marketing. This creates two hurdles when trying to market to technical customers.

Also, I’ll admit it — technical folks tend to be picky, sometimes even nit-picky.

I’ve always said that I brought two big advantages to any Marketing-type position:

  1. I have a technical, not a Marketing, background.
  2. I have been a customer.

So, while IT-related Marketing sometimes takes the blame for things that aren’t their fault, sometimes they do things that really are their fault. Below, I’ll cover the five things that Marketers need to just STOP right freaking now.

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VMware Announces vExperts for 2017

Yesterday, VMware announced their list of 2017 vExperts. The vExpert program is VMware’s way of recognizing those people who have made valuable contributions to the overall VMware and virtualization community.

The program was started several years ago as a way of extending appreciation and recognition to those folks who were going above and beyond their job descriptions in finding ways to share knowledge and contribute to the community.

To quote VMware:

Each of these vExperts have demonstrated significant contributions to the community and a willingness to share their expertise with others. Contributing is not always blogging or Twitter as there are many public speakers, book authors, CloudCred task writing, script writers, VMUG leaders, VMTN community moderators and internal champions among this group.

…a “vExpert” is not a technical certification or even a general measure of VMware expertise. The judges selected people who were particularly engaged with their community and who had developed a substantial personal platform of influence in those communities.

I feel simultaneously pleased and honored to be included among those selected as a 2017 vExpert. This is my sixth year in a row receiving this designation. It’s been great to be part of this active community of knowledgeable people who are motivated by sharing that knowledge with others.

Congratulations and thanks to all the returning vExperts, and a special congratulations to the first-time vExperts out there. Keep up the good work.

You can see the full list of VMware’s 2017 vExperts in the official announcement.

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Cisco Announces Champions for 2017

Today, Cisco started sending out “Welcome” emails to folks they’ve named as Cisco Champions for 2017.

The Cisco Champions program is a community recognition program. It’s intended to recognize people who are making valuable contributions to the IT community through knowledge sharing. Unlike some other similar programs, Cisco’s own employees are not eligible to be Champions.

What makes a Champion? To quote Cisco:

Cisco Champions is a global group of highly influential IT technical experts who enjoy sharing their knowledge, expertise, and thoughts across the social web and with Cisco. The Cisco Champions program encompasses people with interests across Cisco’s technology portfolio, including Data Center, IoT, Enterprise Networks, Collaboration, and Security.

I’m honored to add that I received my own 2107 “Welcome” email earlier today, naming me a Cisco Champion for Data Center for the fourth year in a row. It’s been both humbling and helpful to be part of this community. Often, seeing how much the other members contribute has been the motivation for me to sit down and do the work to convert an idea into an actual blog post.

I’m proud to be part of this community, and look forward to meeting other Champions at event.

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My Interview with Geek Whisperers on Being a Technical Generalist

I had the honor (and fun) of being the guest on the most recent episode of the Geek Whisperers podcast (Episode 129).

I know this will cause my long-time readers to immediately ask two questions:

  1. How is it, exactly, that these folks have managed to do 128 episodes without having you as a guest before now?
  2. Isn’t this episode incredibly timely given your current job search?

I’ll attempt to answer these questions as best I can. Continue reading

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Pure Storage’s FlashBlade is now GA

Pure Storage logoToday, Pure Storage, an All-Flash storage vendor, announced the General Availability (GA) of their FlashBlade, a scalable, All-Flash, NFS storage platform, as well as the GA of version 1.2 of Elasticity, the software that runs the FlashBlade.

I wrote about FlashBlade when it was first announced in 2016. At the time I was very excited about the possibilities of this platform. I wasn’t able to get hands-on with the platform. The closest I got was being able to hold and examine one of the blades — encased in a Lucite box. (Really. They handed it to me all boxed up. I was tempted to use my multitool to open the box up to conduct a more-thorough examination, but not only did it feel like it would be rude, they also seemed to always make sure I was within arms-reach of at least three Pure employees at any point the blade was within arms-reach of me… (Kudos to them on having done their advance research.))

At that time, not all of the specifications had been solidified, but those details are available now. Continue reading

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Mixed Message Monday: Flonase Thinks You’re a Drooling Moron

Time for another Mixed Message Monday, where I point out marketing that sends a different message than the intended one. At least, I hope the message delivered was different than they intended…

This time I take a look at an allergy medicine commercial for the brand Flonase.

The commercial comes out with a great message on the value of their brand: Continue reading

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HPE Acquiring SimpliVity for a Bargain Basement Price

Yesterday, Hewlett Packard Enterprise announced that they had entered into an agreement to acquire hyperconverged infrastructure vendor SimpliVity for $650 Million in cash. This number comes in significantly lower than the rumors that had been going around, valuing SimpliVity as an acquisition target at as high as $3.9 Billion.

Long-time readers already know I’m a long-time fan of SimpliVity (in fact, they’re one place I had contacted as part of my current job search). I’d been rooting for them to make it to the IPO stage. Continue reading

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Job Search Mode: Engaged!

After five very happy years, I find myself back on the job market. Instead of attempting to take on a new job search entirely on my own (which is exactly what I would have done in the past), I’m looking to grow my “ask for help” muscles by, well, asking for help.

Besides, other folks have a different perspective on both me and the job market than I do — if only because they’re standing somewhere different than I am. Having additional viewpoints might help me find an fantastic opportunity that I might not have otherwise heard of, or might not have considered.

What Happened

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State of the Blog Report: 2016

New Year’s Day. Today we find ourselves breathing a sigh of relief that we actually made it through the year that was 2016. It’s also a time to look forward with a mixture of hope and dread at the year that will be 2017.

This post focuses on looking back at how GeekFluent did during 2016.

With a total of 36,720 views, 2016 was the blog’s second-biggest year, coming in at 99.5% of 2014’s total of 36,900 views. A more detailed look follows below. Continue reading

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Report on GeekFluent’s Predictions for 2016 — How’d I Do?

report-cardLast year I did my first “Predictions for Next Year” post. I see a lot of these kinds of posts near the end of the year. I wanted to take things a step further and look back to see how well I did.

It is, of course, difficult for any of us to be completely objective about ourselves, so to help keep me honest, I’ll spell out the scoring methodology I’m using to rate the accuracy of my predictions. Additionally, I’m explicitly soliciting feedback. If you think I’ve scored myself in any of the categories incorrectly (either too high or too low), make your case in the comments.  If your reasoning is sound, I’ll adjust the score.

Scoring Methodology

I made predictions on four distinct topics. To rate my predictions’ overall accuracy on a scale of 0 to 100, I’ll rate the predictions for each topic on a 0 to 25, with 0 points if I was completely off-base, and 25 if I was completely dead-on accurate.

So, without further ado, let’s see how I did: Continue reading

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