Insights from Nebo

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November 3, 2014

Do What You Love, And Make a Difference Doing It

Lately, it seems like we’ve been bombarded by terrible news. Every time I turn on the TV or even glance at Twitter, there’s a barrage of horrifying stories. UVA student Hannah Graham went missing, and last week they found her remains. ISIS continues to terrorize innocent people. Violence rages on in Syria.

It’s like a constant gut punch, and I shouldn’t even be surprised that it’s coming. But I am. Every time, I am.

I can’t escape it, and I can’t change it.

October 29, 2014

The Case Against Collaboration

For the longest time, I had no idea what the Director of a movie actually does.

Think about it. He doesn’t come up with the story (that’s the Screenwriter). He doesn’t operate the camera (that’s the Director of Photography or one of his crew). He doesn’t go into the raw footage and edit himself (that’s the Editor). He doesn’t hold the boom mic (that’s the guy that holds the boom mic). Sure, in some cases, the Director is the screenwriter, or the DP, or the editor, but typically, he delegates the majority of these tasks. 

So what DOES he do? And why does he get all the credit when the film wins awards? Why does he take the fall when it flops?

The answer, it turns out, is because he or she is actually the most important person on set.

October 23, 2014

What Fantasy Football Can Teach Us About Research

Fall is well upon us, which means one thing:

Fantasy Football.

Despite being a huge football fan, I never understood the appeal of the Fantasy phenomenon. “Wait, you play a virtual game with NFL players… you mean like The Sims?”

Yet every year, I felt like I was missing out. Something huge was happening that I wasn’t a part of and I wanted in. So this season, I joined a random Yahoo league, named a team, and boom! I’ve become part of the craze.

Turns out, everything I thought about Fantasy Football was wrong. Sure it’s like The Sims…. The Sims on steroids.

October 21, 2014

SEO & The Internet of Things

Imagine 10 years ago, leaving the airport at 2 AM in a new city with no contacts and no plans. The idea that you could use your phone to find and book a nearby hotel (based on ratings and reviews), request and pay for a ride (and get an arrival estimate), and make breakfast plans - all while messaging friends across the country - was thought to be incredible. “Blue sky” thinking, they called it.

And yet, now it’s all here. It’s amazing, but also completely normal. Marketing is different. SEO is certainly different. But in many ways it’s still the same. Like we outlined in our new definition of SEO, it’s still about Solving Problems, Engaging Audiences, and Optimizing Everything.

The new “blue sky” thinking in 2014 is about the Internet of Things—the shift to assigning every single thing an IP address and connecting it to the Internet.

October 15, 2014

The Problem with Championing Individuality

When we think about success and growth within a community or organization, two groups stand out to me most: Individualism, which is defined as the “moral stance, political philosophy, ideology or social outlook that emphasizes the moral worth of the individual” and conformism, or collectivism, which is “an ideology that emphasizes the interdependence of every human”.

Working in digital, we hear buzzwords like “innovator”, “visionary”, “revolutionary” and “thought leader”, and we think those words represent the best qualities in people who have made or will make a difference in this world. We tend to consider those who are considered original, extreme, no-nonsense and bold as the leaders who stand out most to us in our fields, right?

October 9, 2014

The Fallacy of the Funnel: How to Leverage the New Buyer Journey

If you were to play buzzword bingo at a marketing conference this year, “the funnel” would be a guaranteed get.

It’s a buzzword now, but the concept of a buyer funnel is not new. Back in 1898, a man named E. St. Elmo Lewis was credited (though not definitively) to have developed the first idea of a purchase funnel.  He defined the stages of the buying funnel as follows:

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