Monthly Archives: April 2011

Gone too soon

LifeToday I am not going to publish a post on social media or business development. Today I am not sharing a cool video with great insights from a business authority. No. Today I want to write about something that I have been reflecting for the past couple of days. I want to talk about Life.

On April 26th, a friend of mine, Lukasz Willman, suffered a fall during a bike ride in the forrest. As a result of his injuries, he died later that day.

Although we were not close friends, every time we had the opportunity to meet he always had a big smile and a great attitude. We had interesting and meaningful conversations and I enjoyed his company very much. I know he was liked and loved by many people and that he will be terribly missed.

Now …. every death is a tragedy, but knowing that a healthy, kind, friendly, successful, cherished guy in his mid-thirties suddenly dies … well, it is a big wake-up call. His death has affected me and for the past couple days, I have been reflecting on how I’ve lived my life, on all the the things I have done, on all the things I want to accomplish and on the legacy I am building for my two kids.

But also, I have been thinking about the things that I have not done. Things that I thought I was committed to achieve. Things that represent meaningful work and that … well because of different reasons (read excuses) I have “left for later” or categorized as “someday/maybe projects”.

I have been thinking about the concept that I have shared with you in one of my previous posts entitled: “A life-changing principle: Die empty“. In it, Todd Henry shares his idea of working everyday on “emptying yourself”. In other words, to get whatever is in you, out of you to do your daily work. To leave nothing unspoken, uncreated, unwritten, undone. In other words, to divest yourself of whatever is inside of you.

After listening to that podcast and writing that post, I decided to establish the “Die empty” idea as a guide to everything I do. Well, I confess that I have not been consistent. This tragedy has made me get back on track.

I have also been thinking on the story that Benjamin Zander shared in the final moments of his remarkable TED Talk. He told the story of a lady that survived Auschwitz, who told him that when she and her younger brother were in the train going to the concentration camp, she noticed that his shoes were missing. So, she told him “Why you are so stupid? Can’t you keep your things together for goodness sake?” … Unfortunately that is the last thing she said to him, because he did not survived.

After she left Auschwitz she made a vow to “never say anything that could not stand as the last thing I ever say“.

I have watched that TED talk dozens of times and every time I keep reinforcing the idea of applying this into my life. Unfortunately, often I have caught myself not following that commitment. Specially with my kids. I have realized that sometimes I am too strict with them and I overreact. This tragedy has made me realized that I must take this possibility to get back on track.

So this tragedy has really put things in perspective to me. And, well, if I can give you some sort of advice is to live your life fully. Do not take anything for granted. Take chances. Start something meaningful. Go for it. Take that dance lesson you have been wanting to take for so long. Learn that language. Tell your loved ones how much you love them and focus everyday on having a big impact in their lives. Call that person you have been wanting to call … Whatever it is … go for it. Do it. Life is too short …

I wish I had taken the opportunity to get to know him better.

My thoughts and prayers go to his family.

RIP Lukasz Willman (1973 – 2011)

Photo by Konrad Mostert

The future of shopping

Very interesting look into the future of shopping (which as you will see, the future is … now!)



This definitely confirms one of my favorite remarks by Mitch Joel: “Your mobile phone has become the remote control of your life“.

What do you think about this? Have you used applications like the ones described in this video? Any mobile apps you would like to recommend? Please let us know in the comments below.

Have a great day!

You must understand your business before you understand social media

For the past few weeks I have been working on my presentation for the upcoming Chief Marketing Officer Congress, and one of the things I have been thinking about is the fact that I feel that in Poland (where the event is taking place), the speed of adoption and understanding of some of the key concepts I will be talking about, such as the integration of content marketing and social media, is considerably different than what is happening in the US, so I have been working on striking a balance between introducing the audience to some cool ideas and concepts from all over the world, without losing the connection with what is happening now in Poland.

Interestingly enough (let’s talk about great timing), as I am working on this, this morning I bumped into Olivier Blanchard’s YouTube Channel and in it I found a very cool short video in which he shares very interesting insights on the speed of social media adoption across different cultures and on what is the first thing you should do before diving into using all the different social media platforms available.



Here are some of my favorite key points from this video:

- Different countries, cultures, markets adapt at different rates and on different ways.

- People will reach social media adoption/social media fluency when they are good and ready.

- It isn’t so much on focus on learning how to use Twitter or Facebook or whatever platforms you want to use, the point is to go back to understanding your business, understanding what is your role, what makes you different, what are your objectives and your goals and also what is it that your customers want to accomplish.

- Understand your business before you understand social media. Therefore, focus on the tools last.

Great stuff!

So, here you have my suggestions for today. Three steps:

1. I strongly recommend you to connect with Olivier
2. Check out and read regularly his fantastic blog: The Brand Builder, and …
3. Read … no … study his remarkable book Social Media ROI: Managing and Measuring Social Media Efforts in Your Organization (Amazon affiliate link).

Olivier is a very gifted person when it comes down to explaining complex concepts clearly and concisely. I am sure you will learn a lot by connecting and following Olivier’s great work.

Speaking at the Chief Marketing Officer Congress

Are you heading to Sopot, Poland for the Chief Marketing Officer Congress from May 30th to June 3rd? Well, me too!

During the second day of the event, I will be speaking about Inbound Marketing and would love to see you there.

With more than 70 speakers this is for sure one of the most important business events in the region and represents a great opportunity to learn more about the current trends in marketing and to meet and interact with great people.

I really hope to see you there!

Visit the Congress’ website for more information or to register

Social media is a big opportunity

A lot of people are still debating about the impact that social media can have on their businesses and are failing to understand that this represents a huge opportunity.



Related posts:

1. Gary Vaynerchuk on how businesses must adapt to social media
2. Understanding social media in 14 minutes
3. Experiment with Social Media
4. The best explanation of how social media works

Quote of the week

The problem with the rat race is that even if you win you are still a rat.”
Lilly Tomlin

Gary Vaynerchuk on how businesses must adapt to social media

I have been a big fan of Gary Vaynerchuk for a long time. I have been following his work for couple of years already and I can say that his passion, work ethics and specially his philosophy about business has been very inspiring for me.

I have watched dozens of his videos, listen to many of the podcasts in which he has been a guest, connected with him on Twitter, read his two remarkable business books and honestly, I cannot have enough of this guy.

Today I want to share with you a short video of a presentation he gave a few months ago, in which he talks about how business must adapt to social media. His message is very clear and to the point, and in just 10 minutes you will get many valuable lessons that have a huge impact in business worldwide.

So, here is my suggestion for today. Two steps:

1. Watch this video. And right after watching it …
2. Get his remarkable new book The Thank You Economy (Amazon affiliate link). Trust me, this is an important book that you have to read if you want to be relevant on business from now on. There is no turning back. The Thank You Economy is here to stay, so either take action and adapt or get ready to suffer the consequences.



Related posts:

1. Understanding social media in 14 minutes
2. Mitch Joel on the future of the web
3. Reinventing social media
4. Conversations on social media
5. The best explanation of how social media works

Understanding social media in 14 minutes

Today is my pleasure to share with you a great video with Mitch Joel, President of Twist Image and best selling author of the outstanding Six Pixels of Separation: Everyone Is Connected. Connect Your Business to Everyone. (Amazon affiliate link), in which he talks about many key concepts connected with social media that are vital for you and your organization to understand.

In this excellent video he talks about:

- the volume of group expression
- the relationship between transparency and credibility
- having the right attitude to succeed in social media
- managing technology
- privacy
- living in a world where we are all connected
- the role of technology facilitating human relationships



Related posts:

1. Mitch Joel on the future of the web
2. Reinventing social media
3. Conversations on social media
4. The best explanation of how social media works

10 remarkable TED Talks you should watch

Quoting Britney … “Oops I did it again”. Just like with my previous posts in the “10 remarkable …” series, I got myself in a tough situation. Choosing 10 remarkable TED Talks you should watch out of the over 900 remarkable presentations in the TED archives was a big challenge.

Yes, you will notice that I did not include the “most viewed” or “most popular” presentations, including some of my favorite TED Talks, such as Sir Ken Robinson’s classic “Do schools kill creativity?” talk, or Jill Bolte Taylor’s powerful “How it feels to have a stroke“. The reason is simple. If you are a fan of TED, chances are that you have already watched them, so instead here you have other 10 remarkable presentations that may not have millions of views (yet) but that are most definitely full of extremely valuable insights.

Note 1: The list is not organized in order of importance. Each presentation focuses on different topics and each is remarkable on its own way.

Note 2: In some of my previous posts I have already included many remarkable TED Talks. As I did not wanted to repeat any of the presentations previously shared on this blog, all the Talks listed below have not been shared previously here. You are more than welcome to check out those other remarkable TED and TEDx Talks.


1. Morgan Spurlock: The greatest TED Talk ever sold
Morgan Spurlock dives into the hidden but influential world of brand marketing, on his quest to make a completely sponsored film about sponsorship. And yes, this talk was sponsored too.

2. Benjamin Zander: Classical music with shining eyes
Benjamin Zander has two infectious passions: classical music, and helping us all realize our untapped love for it — and by extension, our untapped love for all new possibilities, new experiences, new connections.

3. Simon Sinek: How great leaders inspire action
Simon Sinek has a simple but powerful model for inspirational leadership all starting with a golden circle and the question “Why?”

4. Alain de Botton: A kinder, gentler philosophy of success
Alain de Botton examines our ideas of success and failure — and questions the assumptions underlying these two judgments. Is success always earned? Is failure? He makes an eloquent, witty case to move beyond snobbery to find true pleasure in our work.

5. Rory Sutherland: Life lessons from an ad man
Advertising adds value to a product by changing our perception, rather than the product itself. Rory Sutherland makes the daring assertion that a change in perceived value can be just as satisfying as what we consider real value — and his conclusion has interesting consequences for how we look at life.

6. Aimee Mullins: The opportunity of adversity
The thesaurus might equate “disabled” with synonyms like “useless” and “mutilated,” but ground-breaking runner Aimee Mullins is out to redefine the word. Defying these associations, she hows how adversity — in her case, being born without shinbones — actually opens the door for human potential.

7. Seth Godin: Sliced bread and other marketing delights
In a world of too many options and too little time, our obvious choice is to just ignore the ordinary stuff. Marketing guru Seth Godin spells out why, when it comes to getting our attention, bad or bizarre ideas are more successful than boring ones.

8. Dan Pink: The surprising science of motivation
Dan Pink examines the puzzle of motivation, starting with a fact that social scientists know but most managers don’t: Traditional rewards aren’t always as effective as we think. Listen for illuminating stories — and maybe, a way forward.

9. Mark Bezos: A life lesson from a volunteer firefighter
Volunteer firefighter Mark Bezos tells a story of an act of heroism that didn’t go quite as expected — but that taught him a big lesson: Don’t wait to be a hero.

10. The LXD: In the Internet age, dance evolves …
The LXD (the Legion of Extraordinary Dancers) electrify the TED2010 stage with an emerging global street-dance culture, revved up by the Internet. In a preview of Jon Chus upcoming Web series, this astonishing troupe show off their superpowers.


Do you have any favorite TED Talks?. If you do, please go ahead and share them with us in the comments below!

Related posts:

1. 10 remarkable blogs you should read
2. 10 remarkable YouTube channels you should subscribe
3. 10 remarkable podcasts you should listen to
4. 10 remarkable ChangeThis manifestos you should read

Quote of the week

“There are two kinds of people, those who work and those who take the credit. Try to be in the first group, there is less competition there.”
Indira Gandhi