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YouTube Symphony Orchestra : Building a symphony online

YouTube + Google have launched the YouTube Symphony, a place where anyone can audition for Carnegie Hall.

A few other places (including the New York Times) are talking about it:

I initially read it on Andrew Taylor’s blog, The Artful Manager, but there are many other blogs talking about this great contest.
So what is it? According to Jaime Weinman
musicians make videos of themselves playing a particular part in a short piece by the composer Tan Dun. They also make a more standard audition video of themselves playing their usual repertoire. They submit their videos by January 28, and the judges pick the winners. Then YouTube creates a mashup where they combine the winning parts into an “online orchestra,” and then the winners are flown to New York to do a live performance at Carnegie Hall in April under veteran conductor Michael Tilson Thomas.
How did this idea happen? Greg Sandow wrote an interesting article on this and gives us a quick summary:
Two guys at Google came up with the idea (Google owns YouTube), and pitched it to the rest of the company. The rest of the company liked it, so Google went ahead, and found classical music partners to join in the fun.Â
This Washington Post article also gives a nice overview of the contest.
Is this a good idea? Will this water down classical music while bringing it to larger audience? Or will it be a great success?

Setting up Facebook Ads: Part 1

This past month, I setup a facebook ad campaign for a company. There are many who say that facebook ads do not work. For the purpose of this article, I will disagree with them. The goal for the campaign was to generate awareness about the company on facebook, and it worked.  I was able to target my ad according to age, demographics, interest, price, and schedule. I was also able to track the results of the ad in real time.  

For this test campaign, I budgeted $20/day. As I stated above, my main goals were simply to build awareness of the company, and drive traffic to their facebook page and promote their event on facebook. In a matter of days, the ad appeared on facebook over 300,000 times. 107 people clicked on the ad. In terms of clicks, this is wildly disproportionate to other ad networks like Google. Nonetheless, there was a small, but extremely relevant increase in participation.  Here’s a breakdown of stats

 

Impressions: 328,307 Clicks: 107 Click through rate: 0.03%     total spent: $64.01

I knew the benefit of setting up a campaign on facebook would be the targeting that facebook provides. For example, if I wanted to reach people who are interested in Aerosmith, The Who, and/or The Daily Show, I had the option of doing so. And my ad also appeared ALOT.

If you’re looking for impressions (awareness), facebook is a good platform. If you’re looking for direct conversions (leading to purchases), I would still consider it. However, I would strongly consider running a google adwords campaign at the same time to compare results.

For those interested in running a campaign, I’ve attached some visuals.

Below are a few screenshots of what the ad setup process looks like on facebook. 

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If you’ve run a facebook ad, or are thinking of doing it, let me know. I would love to hear your thoughts, comments, and questions. What are you looking to advertise? What are your expectations for setting up the ad? What do you want your audience to do?  What kind of results do you expect?

Strategy versus Tactics

Kendall Allen writes :

On our best game, we plan for business and get to market; we move with clarity from strategy to plan to brass tacks. It all ties together. But, given the potential to miss the mark and disconnect horribly, there is an open, perpetual conversation about strategy vs. tactics. In almost any business circle, it buzzes. You can jump in on this confab almost any given day of the week. What is the talk?

Well, I’m sure you’ve noticed that some people truly cannot distinguish between strategy and tactics; it’s all a blur, or they just flat-out jump right into the weeds and operate more as tacticians than critical thinkers. Many of those either lazy or clueless go as far as to say, “Strategy and tactics, one and the same.” So, we talk about them. There’s a collective guffaw among the righteous — and the conversation that extols the difference goes from there. Seriously — just think how many opinion pieces you have seen on whether people — marketers, agencies, media companies — get it or not. It even extends to the world at large –other sectors and even presidential debates. Strategy vs. tactics — what’s the difference? We love this topic.

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