Insights from Nebo

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May 30, 2013

Corporate Catfishing: How Brands Exaggerate, Bend the Truth & Flat Out Lie to Consumers

People have been lying to each other for thousands and thousands of years—before we could speak words to each other, even.

But, “A-ooga, a-ooga!” you say.

You really expect me to believe that?

The problem is that lying for kids today is so damn easy, what with all the social media and whatnot. I remember when you used to have to actually look someone in the eyes when you lied to them (uphill both ways!). It used to take serious stones to purposefully deceive someone, especially someone you cared about.

Not anymore! Nowadays it takes a computer savvy fibber about 5 minutes to fabricate an entire online identity, through which they can spew falsehoods toward anyone who will hear them with very little risk of discovery or backlash. It’s become so easy, in fact, to ensnare people in romantic trysts with your online alter ego that it almost seems crazy NOT to.

It’s called Catfishing, and now it’s not just antisocial weirdos who are creating digital personas in an attempt to lure in people who would otherwise never associate with them. Brands and businesses are joining in on the fun.

How? Read on.

May 24, 2013

The Arrogance & Influence of Alexey Brodovitch

Photographer Irving Penn had heard that his friend, mentor and father figure, Alexey Brodovitch, was on his deathbed. Years of drinking and chain smoking had caught up with the Russian aristocrat, and everyone believed he was down to his last days. However, when Penn arrived at the hospital for one last visit, he was met with another surprise.

“Thanks for sending me a copy of your book, but, frankly, I must tell you its terrible,” said Brodovitch from his hospital bed. Penn was startled. Would these really be the last words he would ever hear from Brodovitch? Would this be how he would remember the man who influenced and transformed his work, who made him the photographer he is today? Then it hit him. If the man was still filled with this much acid, he was surely going to be ok.

You see, Alexey Brodovitch, one of the greatest and most influential art directors of the 20th century, wasn’t known for his tenderness. He wasn’t known for being supportive. He wasn’t known for being a happy man.

Brodovitch was known for introducing America to European modernism and revolutionizing magazine design. He was known for exposing us to new talents such as Salvadore Dali and Herbert Bayer, and teaching great photographers such as Frank Roberts and Richard Avedon. He was known as the father of modern art direction, using unconventional and experimental designs that are common practice today. He was known for a lack of sympathy, decisive action, chain-smoking, and for being a drunk and a bit of a hard ass.

And the worlds of design, illustration, photography and art direction are better for it.

May 22, 2013

Good vs. Great Marketers

There is no bigger difference than the difference between being good and being great. It’s easy to go from being mediocre to being good, but going from good to great? That’s a huge jump.

It’s easy enough to be good at your job. A strong work ethic and dedication will get you pretty far in life; but to be great is something special.

I’ve been fortunate to meet many people who are great at their jobs. Luckier still, I get the chance to work with people every single day who are truly great digital marketers. I’ve often tried to put my finger on just what it is that makes these people great, and of course, it’s impossible. If greatness could be boiled down to a few characteristics and copied, everyone would be great, and we all know that is not the case. However, while there is always an undeniable “X Factor” that can’t be duplicated, great digital marketers do have many of the same traits in common.

May 20, 2013

Signing Tebow: Brilliant Marketing Move or Bad Football Decision?

Everyone wants to know what’s next for the ever-divisive Tim Tebow, who is now a free-agent after a disappointing and drama-filled season with the New York Jets. It seems like just yesterday that Tebow was launching an overtime touchdown pass to Demaryius Thomas to beat the Steelers in the 2011 Wild Card playoff game. Now the poor guy can’t buy a roster spot.

Some say he’ll be scooped up by an NFL team before training camp. Others expect him to take a job in the CFL or Arena League or leave football behind all together and pursue a career with the church. As of this writing, Tebow remains in limbo while media around the country speculate as to whether their local teams should sign him. 

May 14, 2013

Facebook Graph Search Deconstructed

1 billion people. 240 billion photos. 1 trillion connections.

Facebook helps us stay connected to the people, places and things we love. However, the social network is pushing us to open up our world and do more. It wants us to not only connect to our friends, but to use our personal stories and experiences to help us answer life’s most pressing questions, like:

Where can I find a vegan restaurant in Mobile, Alabama?

Facebook’s new Graph Search will help us do just that by using our friends’ likes and interests to personalize search results. Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, you’ve probably heard of Graph Search but, unless you’re one of the lucky few who made it into the product’s beta testing, you probably haven’t used it.

We’ve created a breakdown to outline how Graph Search works based on information we received from Facebook Project Manager, Loren Cheng, along with some recent developments we’ve learned about since the product launched early this year.