Category Archives: MobiM

WORTHY OF AWARDS

The Chicago Innovation Awards – Part 3

John Jonelis

Time Share Gulfstream JetI’ve jumped aboard a Gulfstream G450 to interview the legendary Loren Bukkett. I want his take on the Chicago Innovation Awards. He finally puts away his phone and turns to me. “Okay, let’s talk,” he says.

I take that to mean he’s already finalized all the deals that peaked his interest. Nice to have a large staff to handle the details. But here in the jet cabin, it’s just Loren, his wife Aussy, and me.

Aussy is doing some form of shorthand on a tablet computer. That woman hasn’t spoken since I climbed in the plane. Maybe Loren asked his wife to keep it buttoned. Maybe he wants to control what information gets out. At this point, I’m afraid to ask her a direct question. I even wonder if this is their secret strategy to keep outsiders off balance. If so, it’s working.

They give out so many honors at the Chicago Innovation Awards tonight that I can’t keep it all straight. So much glitz and pizzazz. Jumbo screen. Music. Entertainment. Applause. Streaming internet content. I appreciate the way they present a standardized set of videos to highlight the mission of each winner. A professional job and it moves things along nicely. With sponsors like Disney, Comcast, and Wrigley, they can afford to do it right.

Chicago Innovation Awards

Chicago Innovation Awards – jaj

I pull out my notes. “Let’s do the ‘Up-and-Comer’ category first.” I proceed to read off the list but Loren waves me to a halt.

“We’ll do it my way,” he says. And he goes on to tell me about every company that won an award at that event. He does it in depth. No notes. No prompts. At his age, that kind of memory astounds me.

“Now John, keep in mind that for twelve years, every company with an award from this group is a success. And there are a lot of them. That’s impressive and gives an old investor like me a feeling of confidence. Of course my people check out these companies in depth, but you can’t help but come away with some degree of certainty—a belief deep down that every one of them will find a way to make it.”

“You said they’ll break that perfect record this year.”

“That’s the awards to those two politicos, not the companies. No as I see it, what we have here is a large pool of opportunity. I already set some wheels in motion. Don’t ask me which ones.” He clasps his hands behind his neck and leans back. “When you get to be my age, you either turn into a curmudgeon or you win back some of that idealism you enjoyed as a youth. These days, a big part of my strategy includes companies that are doing-well-by-doing-good. I saw a few tonight. One of them is BriteSeed.

I nod. “I saw them pitch earlier in the year—at BNC I think. They made a big impression on me.” I splash three fingers of his excellent Hennessy into each of our snifters. Maybe the combination of spirits and altitude will keep him loose.

“It’s a hot sector,” he says. “Their SafeSnipstm technology could be life-saving. Imagine it on a large scale. No more surgical accidents. Billions of dollars saved.” He leans toward me and lowers his voice. “Keep your eye on Northwestern Global Health and their rapid HIV diagnosis. And Recall-Connect built an automated system to match defective medical implants with patients. No more wading through reams of paper files. Medline came out with an anti-viral face mask. Preventing disease is real attractive to me, but this one’s a family company, so…”

“No need for investors?”

“We’ll wait and see. My only concern with Feeding America is scalability. But they won the Social Innovator Award so people need to take that group seriously—very seriously. Any way we can fight hunger, we oughta do it.” He gingerly takes a tiny sip of his cognac as if he’s already had enough to drink. “I’m interested in the People’s Choice Awards winner,” he says. A little company, New Futura, wants to help Latinos achieve the American dream. Naturally I’m attracted to those kinda offerings. Then there’s Moneythink helping high school kids with their careers. That’s about it for the do-gooders.”

“What about Belly?”

He pauses a moment, pats his stomach, then grins. “That’s another hot sector. That company is off and running in 10 markets with half a million customers already. I’m sure they’ll do well. But I’m not in the mobile app or social media space.”

“Doesn’t that limit your exposure to startups?”

“That it does, John. That it does.” He takes another tiny sip of cognac. “Anymore,” he says, in his Midwestern idiom, “Anymore there’s so much money chasing mobile. So many new startups and only a few will pay off. The good ones get bid-up. Way too high for my liking. New York, Boston—all those great centers for venture capital are in love with mobile and social media. Maybe it’s good for Silicon Valley but it doesn’t fit my strategy. That’s why I come to Chicago. Of course I make exceptions.”

“Do you see a bubble?”

“Well, you always need to keep that in mind. For me it’s more a problem of value.”

Anybody that follows Loren Bukkett knows that deep value is his favorite strategy. Then he shifts gears. “Do you know anything about NuMat Technologies?

That catches me off-guard and I fumble over my words. “Some. I saw them present at another Chicago event–can’t recall where. Seemed like a winner to me but with so many great offerings, the judges at that event looked elsewhere. Do you think the technology is practical? Can they actually store and transport natural gas in bulk the way they suggest?”

“Keep your eye on them,” he says. And suddenly I wish my investment portfolio could stretch that far.

“And Coyote helps trucking avoid dead runs by sharing between companies. That’s the same thinking that put you and me on this beautiful jet. I like that business model.”

He takes more from his snifter and my hopes of getting him to comment on the awards to the governor and mayor are one step closer to reality. “1871,” he says. “That is without a doubt the most significant incubator I’ve come across. They made up their minds to do it right. 50,000 square feet with an option to double. Three universities keep offices there. Venture capitalists too. A successful startup from Northwestern keeps two big rooms to teach folks to code in new languages. Lots and lots of aspiring companies—and you gotta pass their standards to get in! This is one of the new hybrids—part incubator, part accelerator. Most of their companies are outside my investment horizons but every one of them is highly interesting. It must be a great resource for you.”

“Sure, I’ve been there a number of times. They run a lot of events and always invite the community. If they expand, I may take an office there. What’s your opinion on Options City?”

Loren lifts his feet back to the tabletop. “That one hopes to cure a sore point of mine. They want to help the little guy fight back against high frequency trading syndicates. We’re talking trading in-and-out in nanoseconds. Nowadays these guys own 70% or more of the volume on most of the exchanges. And naturally, the exchanges reciprocate by giving them the same privileges as market makers. But they don’t carry any responsibility like market makers. Or risk. They don’t make orderly markets. No, they hit and run. They’re speculators. Why should they get the first look at all the trades?  It’s all driven by greed on the part of the exchanges. I think it should be illegal.”

I’m leaning forward and nodding vigorously. “It’s the High Freaks that changed my approach to trading. I had to slow my timing way down and widen my stops—take on more risk.”

“Well alotta people are going broke because of it. These operations spend upwards of $100,000 a month for the fastest hookup and shortest wire to the exchanges and then run everything by computer algorithm. This new company wants to level the playing field.”

“Can they do it?”

“The jury is still out.”

Loren talks another twenty minutes to cover it all. Food Genius, mentormob, and mobcart, all leverage the Internet to aggregate information and communication. Cummins Allison of all people is selling a document scanner for banks. Borealis makes a light that takes 90% less energy and lasts 30 years.

That leaves Bright Tag, Catamaran, Littelfuse, and SMS Assist.  An impressive event in execution, scope, and promise.  It amazes me that so many fine businesses are right here in Chicago.  All they need to succeed is a boost in the economy. 

We clink glasses. “So Loren, I still want to talk in-depth about the awards to the governor and mayor.”

He flashes me a dirty look.

.

Continue to Part 4

Go back to Part 1

Comment on this article — Your name and email is optional

.

Find Chicago Venture Magazine at www.ChicagoVentureMagazine.com Comments and re-posts are welcomed and encouraged. This is not investment advice – do your own due diligence. I cannot guarantee accuracy but I give you my best.
.

Copyright © 2012 John Jonelis – All Rights Reserved

.

.

6 Comments

Filed under 1871, BNC Venture Capital, Characters, Chicago Innovation Awards, Chicago Venture Magazine, Chicago Ventures, Conflict, Entrepreneur, Entrepreneurship, Entrepreneurship and Politics, Events, Innovation, Innovation and Culture, Internet, Internet Marketing, Invention, Kellogg, Marketing, MIT Enterprise Forum, MITEF, Mobile App, Mobile Marketing, MobiM, Northwestern, Software, University of Chicago

FAIL FAST

Mobile University Part 2

John Jonelis

MobiUHere’s more of the best on MobiU, put on by Heartland Mobile Council with speakers ranging from ESPN to Best Buy, all here to tell us how they do Mobile.

And all these big shots stick around THE WHOLE DAY to take in the conference. That’s something that never happens anywhere. Usually, a speaker does his talk then heads for the airport. Not here. This crowd needs to find out what the others are doing. Nobody really knows what works or why.

.

.

MULTIPLE DEVICES - Heartland Mobile Council

MULTIPLE DEVICES – Heartland Mobile Council

I get tagged as a volunteer and can’t cover the event, so I ask my old friend Donatis Ludditis for help. I’m hoping for a man-on-the-street slant on the conference. Can he do it? It’s a long shot. This guy avoids technology like rotten fish.

Ludditis catches me off-guard when he draws two Smartphones from his pockets like pistols. He’s jumping into Mobile with both feet! As he explains in his peculiar blend of Balkan and Chicago dialects: “Is wonderful—no office—no desk. I hate desk. Can talk to grandchildren. No need computer—keep everything on cloud.”

I’m amazed. Here’s this relic from the Lithuanian neighborhood in Chicago, where the Old Language was the Main Language. And he owns two of the slickest new smartphones while I still cling to my antique Palm Pilot. Even at his age he’s full of energy and I don’t think he’ll lose his wild head of Einstein hair if he lives past a hundred. This guy still cracks walnuts with his biceps.

I feed him potato pancakes and sit through a late showing at the theater he wants to see and now it’s the wee hours.  We’re walking a dark street in a part of town where I don’t belong. I’m wanting to call it a day.

“You no like it here, Yon?” Ludditis says, clucking his tongue.

I show him my wristwatch. “It’s three in the morning! Even the muggers are tucked under the sheets.”

Ludditis glances at my phony Rolex. “People still wear such things?”

Photo by Heartland Mobile Council

Photo by Heartland Mobile Council

“I know just what you need.” He nods knowingly. “I fix you up good. He stops walking and peers at one of his smartphones. “There is place open just two blocks away.” He pockets the phone and takes off at a march and as I tag along he says, “No sleep much at my age. No miss much either!”

The place turns out to be a coffee shop. We’re the only customers and grab a booth. Ludditis orders two cups—black coffee—then shoves them both across at me. “You drink, Yonulis—and listen good. I tell about conference just like you ask me to do. First, this Bieber person.”

That wakes me up quicker than the coffee. Ludditis stays current with pop culture at his age? I switch on my MP3 recorder and swallow the black java.

.

Ludditis Reports

“One speaker is Corey Bieber from Blue Cross Blue Shield. Maybe cousin to Justin Bieber. Maybe big joke. I not know. She do project on expectant mothers. Good place to use Mobile App. High-risk group. Lotsa monitoring. Repeat condition. Finite time. Emotional audience. Is perfect. Naturally, their study works out good. App saves the company so much money in claims, they wanna give it away free. That way, even more mothers will use it and company saves even more money. But there is internal obstacle. No real data. With no hard proof, is hard sell to upper management. They still trying.”

Somehow that seems ironic to me.  Ludditis goes on:

“Here is what I think happens. Big shot tycoons—they yusta looking at pretty color graphs. Big numbers game. Millions they spend to tell me what I must buy. No more! All big guessing game now. But they know they must play game to win. So corporations sweat bullets to find out how to get people to pay attention to them. Then they want we should tell our friends on Faceboooke, Tweetter, Leenkedin—whatever. How you predict such things in people? Where you place your million dollar bets? Ha!  Nobody know!” He heaves a sigh and smiles. “It make me feel human again—not number—not no more. Dis I like a lot.

“Then lawyer, David Almeida his name–he show us big legal mess. Old laws like square pegs. Courts shoehorn them into Mobile world. Like Cinderella’s slipper! Lawyers gonna make lotsa money like always.”

I write that one down.

Heartland Mobile

Heartland Mobile

“Two guys from Best Buy–they do case study on young males.  Customer want to know if gizmo in store is a good deal. So customer use Mobile Internet to compare price. This turn whole shopping world upside down.”

“You mean people always shop for the best price.”

Ludditis peers at me from under his heavy eyebrows like I’m some kinda idiot. “Convenience, Yonulis. Is number one today. Yusta go straight to store—see if you like product, then go to other store to check price—take all day. No more! Now people check Internet. Reviews. Ratings. Then go to store—feel product—see it. Check price with Smartphone right there. Nobody will come to store unless you make that all possible. Is new kinda service. Then special sale pops up on Mobile. Maybe even show map of store.  Maybe clerk in store show App to help customer.”

Ludditis waves the waitress down and orders a piece of pie. “You like pecan, Yon?”

I nod and sip more coffee.

“Two–with ice cream,” he tells the waitress, then turns back to me. “Here is message: Mobile Apps—two kinds work best: Time savers I tell you about already. But time wasters work good also.”

Photo by Heartland Mobile

Photo by Heartland Mobile

Time Savers and Time Wasters

He’s lost me completely.  “Give me an example of a time waster.”

“Is games. Kids, they crazy for games. Games drive people to store.”

I see what he means. Two completely divergent strategies. But there must be a common denominator. “So Don, what’s the secret sauce?”

He bursts out in a big smile. “Is easy. How do people use Mobile? You take the time to find out! Then you make good customer experience. Not rocket science.”

I recall hearing the same message in the hall. “Listen Don. Today I ran into to Andrea Leiter. She says Mobile Apps are influencing kids.  She can tell because they’re mentioning brands all the time.”

Ludditis stops in the act of forking in a mouthful of pie. “Smart, that gal—she know what she talk about. I see two young guys from Deloitte show big study. Surprising results. Half of customers use Mobile. A hundred and sixty billion dollars of sales—give or take a couple billion—all connected to Mobile. But these not online sales—these in-store!” He digs out a glob of ice cream and closes his eyes while it melts in his mouth.

“What else do you have?”

Ludditis doesn’t answer right away and I have to admit, pecan pie goes good with vanilla ice cream. I’m just grateful Ludditis didn’t order sour cream like he does with most foods.

He starts up again: “Guy from Apartments Dot Com. Everybody think people use Mobile after work only. Wrong! His study show peak time stretch is from 10am to 10pm. Everybody think GPS biggest thing in Mobile. Wrong! Most important thing is functional App.

.

New Nielsen Ratings

“Then I see Michael Bayle from ESPN. This is television station I watch. Football.  They can send out instant replay on Mobile—seven seconds is all it takes! This I like, too.”

Michael Bayle - ESPN

MICHAEL BAYLE – ESPN – by Ludditis

Ludditis sits back and stretches. “Then Bayle shows Nielsen ratings—numbers never seen by public before. Sports fanatics use Mobile Web more than Mobile Apps. Check scores. Watch replay. But spend time on Apps more than Web. You follow?”

I cock my head and look at him a moment before responding. “You mean they use Mobi more often but when they use an App they stick with it longer. What does he make of that?”

“I let Mr. Bayle scratch his head over that. Then they find out this: Sports nut spend forty percent more time on Internet than regular person does. But on Social Media, not sports. Could be they text with friends while watch game. Give same feel as being in crowd. This I not like.”

Too Much Jargon

Ludditis forks in the last of his pie. “Watch out for one thing, Yon. These people like big words. Not much data yet, but lotsa fancy words. Everybody wanna be scientist.”

I sip at my coffee. “It strikes me that way too. Listen, today I meet this guy named Tim Crawford and he says the jargon level is really high with nothing to back it up. At this point, the research is just in its infancy.”

Ludditis snorts.  “He is right.  Just alotta big talk.”

Tim Crawford

TIM CRAWFORD

“But Crawford has a deeper insight. It’s great to be here while it’s all developing. It’s fascinating to see the evolution take place.”

I sip the dregs of the caffeine. “You have to be in the Mobile space, he says—that’s a given. But lacking adequate data, you need a deep personal understanding. Otherwise you spend a lot of money and fail big. He advocates spending just a little money and failing fast. Be nimble and get on the right track. It’s extremely important to fail fast.”  Ω

.

GO TO – THE TYRANNY OF THE TELEPHONE

.

.

Contacts

Heartland Mobile CouncilHeartland Mobile Council Logo

Online: http://heartlandMobilecouncil.org/

Twitter: #mobiu2012

Facebook: HeartlandMobileCouncil

Photographs and comments used by permission of Hugh Jedwill and Heartland Mobile Council.

Find Chicago Venture Magazine at www.ChicagoVentureMagazine.com Comments and re-posts are welcomed and encouraged. This is not investment advice – do your own due diligence. I cannot guarantee accuracy but I give you my best.
Copyright © 2012 John Jonelis – All Rights Reserved

1 Comment

Filed under App, Characters, Chicago Venture Magazine, Heartland Mobile Council, Internet, Internet Marketing, Marketing, Mobile, Mobile App, Mobile Marketing, MobiM, mobiU, Social Media

THE AMAZING MobiU

Mobile University Part 1

John Jonelis

MobiUHow do Social Networks, the Mobile Internet, and Mobile Apps get put to profitable use by Big Corporate Marketing?   I’m at MobiU to find out.  And the big companies are here to tell us about it – Anheuser-Busch, ESPN, United Airlines, Encyclopaedia Brittanica, Walgreens, Blue Cross Blue Shield, Pepsico, Best Buy, Deloitte Consulting, Kimberly-Clark, and many others.  This is the annual Mobile University Conference with speakers on multiple stages at the same time.  Heartland Mobile Council puts on this event at the Microsoft Innovation Center in Chicago.

The Tektite Group’s Jean Pickering runs the volunteers here and she puts the arm on me.  So, how am I gonna cover thisTektite Group event?  I already scheduled the article in Chicago Venture Magazine. 

Then something happens that seems like providence.  I run into Donatis Ludditis.  Good old Don!  Always ready to lend a guy a helping hand!  And a good head on his shoulders, too.  Robust–that’s what I’d call him.  White hair—kinda like Einstein.  Age doesn’t seem to phase him. 

“Don!” I shout, “Don, I need your help!”

He scowls, suddenly guarded. “What you want I should do?” he asks in his mix of Baltic and Chicago dialects.  “I too old for that no more.  I legit. Lawyer say I legit.”

“Just gimme your personal impressions on the talks.  And take some photos—here’s my camera.  Meet me at the old place afterwards.  I’m buyin’.”

“No break nobody’s legs?”  He grins.  “Okay!”  He says it with enthusiasm and grins some more.  “You buy I talk!”  But he hands back my camera.  “I no work dis kinda contraption.”

Smartphones - Photo by Gilly Berlin

SMARTPHONES – Photo by Gilly Berlin

I shrug and pocket my camera.  We shake hands and go our separate ways.  I should’ve known he’d refuse to use a digital camera.  Explaining technology to Ludditis is like talking to a caveman.  This is the guy that labeled the VCR the work of the devil.  I happen to know he never owned a computer in his life.  So what’s he doing here?  But here he is—here in this world of Social Networks and Mobile Internet Marketing—some of the most confounding stuff happening outside of particle physics.  Now, while Jean keeps me busy, I’m counting on Ludditis to give me the man-on-the-street slant on mobile tech.   And I’m worried.  Can he do it?

The Lithuanian Cathedral

The Lithuanian Cathedral

Ludditis is one of the few left from the old days when Lithuanian was the primary language in Chicago’s Marquette Park neighborhood.  He knew my relatives Father Stanley, Father Johnny, Sister Clarita.  He actually attended the old Lithuanian Cathedral.  He’s up there in years but you’re not gonna mess with this guy.  He’s stocky with huge biceps that he uses to crack walnuts.  And even at his age, he still looks plenty dangerous.

At the Diner

The day goes by in a blur and it’s 10pm when I walk into Ludditis’ favorite diner in the old neighborhood.  I find him at table, slowly pouring beer in a glass intended for milk or juice.  That’s the only kind of glass you get in this place. 

The Lithuanian Plaza - Chicago

The Lithuanian Plaza – Chicago

Three empty bottles already stand on the table—labels I can’t read but recognize as Lithuanian.  “I want potato pancakes,” I say as I take a chair.”

“Already order.  You buy dem, we eat dem.” 

I wonder what Donatis Ludditis can possibly know about Big Corporate Mobile Marketing.  I want to understand how they do it and what it means to Startups.  Thirty years back, when Don gave up the noble profession of bouncer (some say enforcer) he bought a tavern of his own, under the ‘L’ tracks.  Paid cash.  Calls it ‘Luddites Shots ‘n Beer.’  Why didn’t we meet there?

The waitress materializes from nowhere lugging two heavy plates.  Ludditis says something to her in Lugan and she comes back with a beer for each of us.  In his robust way he offers cheers.  “Sveikas!” he says as a toast and we clink bottles.  He still talks like an immigrant and he’s not gonna change, even if he makes it past a hundred. 

The beer goes down good.  The thing I like about potato pancakes at this place is they crunch when you chew and now I remember with all my senses why this little diner is the place to be.  “So Don,” I say. “How’d you get mixed up in a Mobile Internet conference?  I’d expect you to curse it as some kinda sin.”

MOBILE DEVICES – Heartland Mobile Council

The Convert

“No, no, is wonderful—so small—carry in trousers.”  He produces a huge Samsung Galaxy in one hand and an iPhone in the other. 

I drop my jaw.  Then, as Ludditis goes on, I take the opportunity to shovel in more potato pancakes and sour cream

“Fit in pocket, see.”  And he slips them away like a gunslinger holstering two six shooters. “They say it soon be part of clothes.”  He talks between bites of food.  “Maybe even put in body—in bloodstream!  No lug around heavy bag.  Is beautiful thing!” 

“It’s technology, Don.”

He shrugs.  “Friends all use it.”

“But you hate technology.”

“Is progress.  Cannot fight such things.  Besides—” He turns over a hand. “Is so easy to talk to a person.  And not stuck at desk.  I hate desk.”

Without warning, he pulls out the iPhone and goes silent.  He bows over the thing and then utters a healthy laugh.  “Is Mary—you know Mary, my great granddaughter,” he says after typing something with his big thumbs.  “She finally get that bum to marry her.  She want I tell her best place for wedding.  Monastero’s is place to go.  Best food.  Best service.  Best price.  So I text her.” 

He texts too?  I shake my head.  “Don, that’s a Sicilian place.”

“So what?”  All kind of people make up city.  Even old neighborhood not same no more.  Not so many speak the language.  New generations take place of old.  People move around.  He points the huge Galaxy phone at me and I see an image of a beautiful ballroom dominated with huge candelabra that look like bouquets of flowers.  “Nice place, you agree?”

In nod and he smiles.  Then he empties the remaining beer from his juice glass in one gulp.  “Look.”  He runs through a series of pictures taken at the MobiU event that day. Nice photography–I have to admit it.  Did he really take those with a phone? 

“What your email address?” he says.  “I send pictures to you.”

I stutter and then tell it to him.

Engaging Your Audience

ENGAGE YOUR AUDIENCE – Heartland Mobile Council

Now he gets out the other phone.  “Manager give two beer if we Like dis place.  You like dis place, Yon?  If you do, I press dis icon.  I no say–you say only.” 

“Yeah, I like it.  Plenty.  Call me John.”

He touches the screen and then thumbs the virtual keyboard and more beers arrive almost immediately.    

“Don, let’s get down to business.  What can you tell me about the conference?  Start from the beginning.”

HUGH JEDWILL – by Ludditis

“Well, that gonna be Hugh Jedwill.  He good boy.  Heartland Mobile Council – it his outfit.  No profit – not never.”

“Non-profit?”

“That what I just say.   Hey, you take notes Yanulis!  I say these things one time only!”  

I pull out an MP3 recorder and switch it on while he forks another glob of potato pancakes. “Their mission, Hugh call it—Change industry.  Do things the right way—not like dot com bomb.”

Not the Dot Com Bomb

“’Scuse me a sec, Don, but whadaya know about big business?”

Ludditis seems genuinely hurt.  “What—you think I no buy stocks?  No do research?  Am I crazy old man and let money rot in bank?”  He strokes the Galaxy and shows me the charts of a couple big tech companies. 

“Sorry.”

“Is okay.”  He brightens and I know the anger is instantly gone.  “Chicago—” Ludditis thumps the table with a meaty Heartland Mobile Council Logoforefinger.  “Chicago is best place to put on dis—dis MobiU.  People come from all over country.  It hub for airlines.  Railroad all pass through here.  Interstate squeeze through.  Dat mean trucks.  Is commodity capital of world.  Chokepoint for Internet.  Lotsa huge consumer brands in town.” 

“Okay, I get it.  Just like the ancient camel route that built Petra in the wilderness.”

He ignores that and goes on. 

No Force Feeding

“After Hugh, I hear Steve Surman from Anheuser-Busch.  He tell us, Do not be needle in haystack.  Dis is big company make Budweiser and he say that.  Old ideas, they no work, he say.  Used to be, ‘Buy me, I’mwhatever’—you fill in blank.  Everything brand-focused.  Nothing for people to say or do.  That is old way.  No good.”

I stare at him, amazed.  There’s really something here—something powerful enough to bring Donatis Ludditis out of a lifelong anti-technology shell.  And I marvel at his sturdy intellect.  I start taking notes like he told me to do. 

“Mobile,” he goes on, “It is big change in way people use tecnostuff.  Everybody want a say.  A say in what they buy.  Brands yusta ram message down your throat.  No more.”  Don squeezes his eyes closed.  “I memorize quote for you:  Surman say, ‘Intense expectation of engagement.’  That is it—exact words.  World not dis way—not for many, many years—such long time you do not even remember!”  He sits back and beams.  “So today, Mobile Contraptions bring back past.  Now we have job for brand and also job for buyer—just like old days when we haggle at market.  Dis I like.” 

I’m in awe.  Ludditis is telling me the same thing Google’s brain trust predicted.  They call it
The Zero Moment of Truth.

Now Ludditis is fooling around with one of his phones again.  “Good movie tonight.  You like movies, Yon?”

“Sure, what’s playing?”

He works his thumbs and then pockets the phone.  “Hugo.  I get bargain.” 

That raises a laugh from me.  “So that’s how you finally fall in love with technology?  The cheapskate in you is overcoming the barriers?”

Ludditis flashes a stern look.  “Smart guy.”  He holds his stare and I shut my trap.  “Is completely different, this Mobile Internet.  No need office.  No need computer.  No file cabinets.  No paper.  Store it all on cloud.  No lug briefcase like some bean counter.  Do anything anywhere.  No lose track of family.  It make me happy.” 

No Sex

“Yon, I think you not see how this make huge change–change in way companies do business,” he says. “This force new kinda advertising on Madison Avenue sharks.  Surman say old crutches no work on Mobile.  Yusta be sex, sex, sex!  Sex sell soap.  Sex sell beer.  Now people with these gizmos say sex get in way.”

“You mean to say sex is a distraction for Mobile users?”

“You no listen?  Here.  The app—she must be practical.  She must function.  And direct—easy to use.  Not just sex.”  He straightens in his chair.  “Dis I like also.”

So the old crutches don’t work in Mobile advertising?  I ponder whether that’s really true but Ludditis moves on and doesn’t give me time to consider it. 

Gatorade and Pandora

GATORADE and PANDORA – by Ludditis

Let me give you the short version of what Don tells me:  He sees Kim Luegers from Gatorade together with Sarah Bild from Pandora Radio.  Pandora’s got a teenage audience.  80% of these kids own smartphones and use the mobile Internet.  75% of their radio gets heard on mobile devices.  These kids pay attention to Mobile Ads.  80% tell friends about what they buy on social media.  They crave it.  And pretty soon they’re gonna be adults. 

We clink bottles again in a toast and I decide to test Ludditis.  “Can you define social media?”

The table immediately sags in the middle from the impact of his fist.  “Shuttup ‘n’ listen, Yonulis.  You think I make this stuff up?”

I show him both palms.  He continues more calmly.  “Turns out,” he says, “Gatorade choose special types to match music on Pandora.  They got active audience.  Kids like brand.  Gatorade does not tell them what to do—no, they listen to customer and talk to them.

They listen.  Of course—that’s the key to it all.  It’s no longer a one-way feed. 

Microsoft Innovation Center

I push away my plate and stretch my legs.  My gut is full and I’m feeling a little sloppy from all the beer.  I wave for the bill.  On the way out the door, Ludditis says, “Yon, you still want see movie?”  He sounds kinda eager, so what the heck.

“Yeah sure,” I say as we walk the dark empty street. 

Ludditis grins.  “I give you rest of the story after de show.”

.

GO TO – FAIL FAST
.

.

Contacts

Heartland Mobile Council:

Online: http://heartlandmobilecouncil.org/

Twitter: #mobiu2012

Facebook: HeartlandMobileCouncil

The Tektite Grouphttp://tektitegroup.wordpress.com/

Photographs and comments used by permission of Hugh Jedwill and Heartland Mobile Council.

.
Find Chicago Venture Magazine at www.ChicagoVentureMagazine.com Comments and re-posts are welcomed and encouraged. This is not investment advice – do your own due diligence. I cannot guarantee accuracy but I give you my best.
Copyright © 2012 John Jonelis – All Rights Reserved

16 Comments

Filed under Chicago Venture Magazine, Conflict, Heartland Mobile Council, Innovation, Innovation and Culture, Invention, Mobile, Mobile App, Mobile Marketing, MobiM, mobiU, Social Media, Tektite