You Can Find Me in the Cloud with HubStor

It’s funny. The last thing I posted here was on January 1st. In it, I mentioned that 2019 had been a hard year. How foolish I was before 2020 came into its own…

In the midst of whatever all of 2020 will continue to bring, I’m pleased to be able to report some good news. I’m employed again — much faster than I was during my either of my last two rounds of job searching. In all, one month passed from the day I was informed that my position had been re-organized out of existence to my first day at the new job. Continue reading

Mixed Message Monday: Kevin Hart and Kickstart

Mixed Message Mondays are my foray into marketing commentary, focused on marketing attempts that must have seemed like a good idea to someone, but have somehow managed to lose the intended message…

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but it feels like Kevin Hart is everywhere lately. He’s doing TV shows, movies, guest appearances, commercials, etc. To that, I say, “Good for you Kevin. Cash in on it while you can.”

But then, I saw a particularly disturbing commercial for Mountain Dew Kickstart.

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An Addendum to My Open Letter

[NOTE: This post might make more sense if you’ve already read my Open Letter to Influence Marketers, but I think it also might work standalone. Your individual mileage may vary.]

After I published my “Open Letter” post on Friday, I had a conversation with Kate Hutchinson, a colleague and friend for whom I have a lot of respect. During that conversation, she very gently reminded me that I dislike it when people complain about something without offering any constructive alternative.

I’ll admit, that once I got the point she was driving at, it stung a little, but that was entirely my fault, not hers. I had done the very thing that I dislike.

I’ll demonstrate with two examples: Continue reading

An Open Letter to Influence Marketers

[UPDATE: I’ve posted an Addendum to this Open Letter. After you read this, be sure to check that out, too.]

Dear Vendor Marketers,

I love being invited to your technical briefings. I can’t emphasize this enough. They’re awesome. They’re filled with useful and interesting information that I’m more than happy to spend my own personal time writing blog posts about, adding my personal analysis and thoughts. With 30 years’ experience in the IT industry, I think that analysis and those thoughts have some value.

Plus, it means a lot to have you trust me with NDA and/or embargoed information. Again, I can’t emphasize this enough. It makes me feel like you truly consider me a valued partner in your success, and that you respect the value of what I can provide.

However, Continue reading

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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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

Mixed Message Monday: Little Caesar’s Thinks You’re an Idiot

Pizza(Think of “Mixed Message Monday” as “GeekFluent Hits Back at Marketing Gone Wrong”. I feature advertisements or marketing campaigns where the message that’s actually delivered is (hopefully) not the one the folks who paid for the ad intended.)

Since my last Mixed Message Monday focused on Domino’s, I thought I’d take a look at another pizza vendor, Little Caesar’s.

Lately, Little Caesar’s has been running a series of commercials about their “Hot and Ready” pizzas. These commercial annoy me immensely. Continue reading

Mixed Message Monday: Domino’s Wants You to Pay to Train Their Employees

PizzaSince some of what I do for a living can be classified as Technical Marketing, every now and then I like to do a post that is more about the marketing than the tech. Mixed Message Monday is my series on Marketing campaigns that have gone wrong — you can see what message the advertiser was hoping you’d take way, but the message they actually delivered is a different one.

Today, I take a look at a Domino’s Pizza ad that’s been playing on TV here in the States recently. Continue reading

Achievement Unlocked: Certification Quest

If you follow me on Twitter, you may have caught some of the story of chasing certifications in October and how the best-laid plans meant nothing to Hurricane Sandy. Despite the obstacles thrown in our way, my teammates and I charged ahead and succeeded in the Bold Plan that was Certification Quest, wherein 6 people achieved 10 EMC certifications in 3.5 weeks (I got 4 of them, taking 4 exams over a 2-day period).

Now that’s it’s over and we’ve had the chance to relax a little, I thought I’d pull together some of my thoughts about the whole process. Continue reading

Introducing Mixed Message Mondays

Some of my hybrid job description covers Marketing and Marketing-related work, so I thought it only appropriate that I blog about marketing occasionally.

With that idea in mind, I’m introducing a new feature on GeekFluent: Mixed Message Mondays.  Each Mixed Message Monday (MMM) post will feature an ad or a marketing campaign where the message gets muddied, lost, or even completely negated by the way someone chose to deliver the message.

You can probably think of a couple examples off the top of your head (frighteningly, they’re everywhere), but just in case you can’t, I’m introducing this feature by focusing on one of the finer examples of this mixed messaging.

Continue reading