I can’t believe it’s been over a month since I last wrote an entry! Where did the time go? Things have been so busy at work with preparing for all of our end of the year releases that I haven’t had a chance to spare. I’ve even been getting up in the morning to use the gym instead of waiting until the end of the day when I get home and am exhausted from so much work. So much has happened but one thing I can say is that I’m really excited for the release of New Moon. We’ve all been working so hard to make this movie release a success and after finally seeing the film I’m excited to say that it’s awesome! I can’t wait for everyone to see it and give their feedback!

Check back soon! I’ll write more as soon as I can and will try to write more often. 🙂


Social Media Marketing Meets Huge Growth
‘Digital word of mouth’ changing the face of business

By Cindy Chan
Epoch Times Staff Oct 14, 2009

Twitter co-founder, Biz Stone, at the Twitter Conference in Los Angeles on Sept. 22, 2009. The free social networking and micro-blogging service allows users to post messages of 140 characters or less, known as ‘tweets.’ It has attracted tens of millions of users since its launch in August 2006. (Mark Ralston/AFP/Getty Images)

As the digital age offers burgeoning choices for people to network online, businesses are increasingly turning to social media like Facebook, Twitter, and blogs to do their advertising and marketing.

Combined with or as an alternative to traditional print, radio, and television, social media marketing is “a market that’s in huge growth right now,” said Dan Martell, an award-winning entrepreneur in the field of social networking innovations.

“We call it ‘digital word of mouth,’ because with social media, if you have a compelling message, with the new tools it allows people to share and essentially create a ‘word of quick marketing’ using digital online as a platform.”

Mr. Martell’s expertise has helped his brother’s company in “an industry that’s very old and archaic” thrive in leaps and bounds.

Pierre Martell owns Martell Home Builders, a construction company in Moncton, New Brunswick, that specializes in the promise that it can build a new home in 99 days.

The company is on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube; runs a blog; and lets buyers follow their home construction progress online, get pictures, and post comments.

“Not only has [Pierre] seen amazing results in his ability to engage with his customers in the market, he’s also seen that translate into real dollars and cents where he’s one of the fastest growing homebuilders in Canada right now,” said Mr. Martell.

Social media is changing the way business is done, he said.

Beyond providing one-way information to the public, “it’s created an opportunity for companies that have the right culture and right brand to build a culture of transparency, and communicate at a frequency that’s never been seen before.”

Companies can have personal dialogues with contacts, resolve problems in real time, and improve their services all around.

“It allows people to know, like, and trust them at a faster pace,” he said.

Find the best fit and plan it out

Chris Burdge agrees. The president of BWEST, a Victoria, B.C.-based consulting firm that helps companies market their business using social media, email, and emerging web technology, Mr. Burdge said that for best results, companies must plan their entry into social media carefully, build a strategy, and then dedicate the resources.

“It’s like any other marketing vehicle. You want to figure out ‘who are we talking to,’ ‘where we are best going to reach them,’ ‘how it’s going to be most effective,’ and plan it out.”

While social media is free, an investment of time—and lots of it—is necessary if it’s going to be used as a marketing channel, Mr. Burdge said.

With the vast range of social networking tools and sites available, which one is the most effective?

“You really need to figure out what social platform is best for the characteristic of that person or that business owner,” said Mr. Martell.

He suggests Facebook for people who like to share information about themselves and things that interest them. For example, customers can follow a company’s fan page as it provides daily updates about its business and ways that people can save time and money in that industry.

YouTube would be a good option for those who like to be in front of a camera, he said. Companies can post corporate videos, everything from executive presentations and event highlights to segments for marketing, training, and customer self-help.

Those who like to write may consider setting up a blog or going on Twitter, which allows people to write short messages of up to 140 characters.

Companies can also post audio and video podcasts on their blogs and have updates instantly delivered to subscribers, Mr. Burdge said.

Among the numerous social media networks out there, LinkedIn has been around the longest, he noted. Over 45 million people worldwide use LinkedIn to make business contacts, according to its website.

And with a service called, people can create their own Facebook-like social networks for their own business, hobby, or other interests, said Mr. Burdge.

Businesses of all sizes on board

While Canadians are the heaviest users of Facebook per capita, “there’s no more time investment for [someone] to communicate with one customer who is following him on Facebook, or 10,000,” Mr. Martell said.

To incorporate all this information into a company’s or an individual’s knowledge base, Flowtown, a firm that Mr. Martell co-founded, has built a tool for analyzing the emails of contacts so that connections can be automated and relationships further developed.

Last year, at age 28, he was among 12 winners of the Business Development Bank of Canada’s Young Entrepreneur Awards during its annual Small Business Week. This year’s Small Business Week takes place October 18 to 24.

But social media marketing is not only flourishing among small and medium-sized businesses. Big brands and established companies are also using it, such as Dell, General Mills, Ford, Cirque du Soleil, UPS, Home Depot, Coca Cola, Virgin America, and others, offering special deals as well as forums and other channels to interact with their communities.

U.K.-based comScore did a study in May 2009 on the 1.1 billion people age 15 and older in 40 countries who accessed the Internet from a home or work location.

It found that two-thirds visited at least one social networking site that month, and ranked Canada as the third most engaged social networking audience, following Russia and Brazil, with visitors each spending an average of 5.6 hours and viewing 649 pages per month.

I found this excellent article on Mashable that I thought I’d share. I found it especially relevant after reading the book “Appetite for Self Destruction” about the crash of the Music Industry in the Digital Age.


What the news industry is experiencing now, the music industry started dealing with 10 years ago – falling revenue and a migration to digital. Ten years on, the music industry is still coming to grips with the changes. A new force – iTunes – has emerged and with it, the iPod, the MP3 and a shift in consumption that has resulted in 95% of music downloads resulting in no payment to the creators, at least according to IFPI data.

As the news industry faces up to the digital challenge, it’s worth looking at the music industry’s last decade to understand what the news business has coming. Its future success will depend on:

– Its approach to the notion of ‘free’ content.
– Its ability to adapt not just its own process, but that of the ecosystem surrounding it.
– Its willingness to embrace new technology, to experiment and innovate and its openness to the needs of consumers.

What follows is a list of four things the news industry can learn from the music industry’s last decade.

1. Rumors of your death will be greatly exaggerated

The ‘death’ of the music industry has been playing out now for a decade. And yet, millions of people still buy CDs. Even though they’re freely available on P2P networks and cheaper in a digital format, physical CDs still matter to people. Even vinyl still matters to people. It’s safe to say then, that there will be fewer newspapers sold in ten years, but there will not be none.

The music industry exists because people love music. Some businesses in that industry might be less profitable now, but people still love music as much as they ever did. The newspaper business exists because people need news. Profitability is wilting, but in a world overloaded with messaging from all manner of sources, the need for original, exclusive, highly relevant and genuinely useful content has never been greater.

Lesson: Just like people still want music, people still need news. The news industry isn’t dying, but it must evolve to avoid stagnating.

2. The print industry’s brand will suffer

The music industry has copped a beating over the last decade — much of it has been deserved. There are countless examples of insanely disproportionate lawsuits that have outraged reasonable music consumers. Combine this with the lingering notion that major record labels are suit-filled factories with a taste for vulnerable, indie blood and you can start to see why the music industry gets blamed for all of music’s ills.

The print industry might have the same coming. Earlier this year, the Associated Press board voted to “pursue legal and legislative actions” against those using content without permission. Aggregators will be the first targets of these actions. The AP has also committed to a remarkable plan which will see it charge up to $2.50 per word for use of its articles.


Rather than embracing the notion of “do what you do best and link to the rest” and maximizing the value of the link economy, the AP appears to be choosing the litigious route. When the music industry stared down Napster and BitTorrent, it too chose the path of litigation. And while litigation effectively throttled Napster (and a number of subsequent players) it did little to slow the spread of illegal downloads and nothing to engage a generation of consumers embracing a new form of consumption.

The legality of aggregators who reprint an excerpt of text and link to it is a gray area. As the argument over the nature of copyright for print online develops, expect the boundaries of ‘fair use’ to be tested. If we learn from the music industry’s experience, we can expect any fallout from the testing to splash on to the news industry at large.

Lesson: Learn from the mistakes that the music industry has made. The news industry’s brand might suffer, but the decline in public perception can be mitigated by embracing new forms of content distribution.

3. The ecosystem is the problem

Music industry people see the digital opportunity. However, seeing an opportunity and making the most of it are two different things. One of the major issues for the music industry in the last decade has been evolving the music ecosystem away from making, selling and distributing physical CDs and towards new digital distribution models.

Artists, managers, labels, publishers, press, distributors, packagers and producers are all still to some extent entrenched in traditional ways of thinking about the music industry. Innovation has to overcome the combined inertia of all these forces to see the light of day.


The news industry will have the same problem. Anyone who makes a living off the process of supplying, writing, editing, printing and distributing printed piles of paper all over the country will have to be transformed if the news industry is to embrace the digital opportunity. Most importantly, consumers will always prefer free. Regardless of whether its music or news, it’s hard to convince people to pay for something they’re accustomed to getting for free.

There are plenty of smart people in the news business with smart ideas about how to evolve. News Limited’s Australian CEO John Hartigan had this to say:

“How many journalists … have written a story recently that was original, exclusive, highly relevant and genuinely useful to [their] audience? … Fewer papers are being sold and in my view it’s because many of them are largely boring and irrelevant to their readership. Their content is ubiquitous rather than unique.”

Hartigan understands the problem and sees the opportunity to embrace new ideas. But ideas and insight aren’t the issue, execution is.

Lesson: The news industry has great ideas, but execution will remain a problem until it learns to let go of old models of reporting, distribution, and consumption and evolve.

4. This is the end of one-size fits all

It used to be that music fans had one main way to consume musical products – the CD. What the music industry is now learning is that music fans come in all shapes and sizes and are willing to consume all types of musical products, from free to outrageously premium.

News (news) is no different. It’s no longer about one paper for all people. It’s about news distilled from many different sources, delivered many different ways on a range of platforms.


People have shown they will pay for premium products in specific niches. The success of publications like Monocle is testament to that. Best described as the Economist of lifestyle magazines, Monocle isn’t just a magazine, but a multi-platform brand encompassing the magazine, a physical store with Monocle branded merchandise, and a web presence that publishes text, audio and video content. Consumers engaging with Monocle can buy the magazine in stores, they can access content for free online, they can pay to engage online more deeply or they can go to a Monocle store and buy Monocle products.

The news industry is going to have to develop a similar model that matches multiple products, at multiple price points, through the right channels to the right consumer. This is starting to happen, but there’s a long way to travel before people understand that a stand-alone, general news website isn’t a sustainable business model.

Lesson: Independent music artists have found a way to make money by developing new, innovative value-add models — the news industry must follow suit.

A decade ago, the record industry was blindsided by the shift to digital. Analyzing the impact of that change is a worthwhile exercise for anyone with a stake in the future of news. Where do you think the news industry should be heading? Leave your thoughts in the comments.


I recently found a couple of online articles and presentations that I found really interesting and wanted to share them. The first is a look at Online Marketing in the Energy Industry and the second is a look at Social Media in the Arts Industry.

Both present very well rounded approaches to Online Marketing that can be applied to almost any project and both also do an excellent job of weeding through the online landscape to reach the end goal.

Can Social Media Save the Art Industry?
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Philadelphia Art Museum, the Brooklyn Museum, The Louvre, the Musee D’Orsay, the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, The Art Institute of Chicago, the list just keeps going…but what’s wrong with this sequence?

With a recession raining down upon us, not many individuals have the time or money to invest in a $20 museum ticket. Cultural past times, such as museums and art centers have taken a massive blow to their internal egos. Around the world, state and government municipalities have sliced budgets, cut staff, and some museums could soon be closing because of a lack of money, interest and more importantly, visitors.

In an effort to revive itself, the arts industry, and most notably, museums, are turning to social media to help boost their fundraising & increase revenue.

Most recently, The Museum of Modern Art, MoMA, launched a new website that completely reconstructs how you take part in art online. The site now offers a variety of social media tools, such as MoMA communities on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, iTunes U, and Flickr. The MoMA is even allowing people to upload their photos they have taken to the MoMA’s Flickr group, which is then featured in a special section on the website, with your name attached to it! All of these community-sharing ideas allow users to take part in the art experience with their friends and more importantly, share it online.

And one of the most notable social features on the new website allows visitors to setup an account online and save or share favorite works of art with others; from paintings, exhibitions, films, and other pieces of the museum. This ‘social bar’, which now rests at the bottom of the page, when clicked, expands to show images and other information that users can ‘collect’ and share. A user then can take those photos and send them to their friends.

The museum never had an ongoing blog, but by using this new approach to the information age by discovering ways to attract and share information with art lovers who may never get to enter the doors of the MoMA – it represents a key tactic in reviving the arts industry.

Artful Thinking…

In a time where social media has become more than just a second thought in many CMO’s plans, social networking, blogs, photo sharing, social bookmarking, videos, and more have allowed online communities to become a much more integral part in a museum’s marketing plan. Places like the Indianapolis Museum of Art, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, and the Brooklyn Museum, all artfully utilize social media in effective and engaging ways.

When it comes to representing a community online, Facebook presents a company with an opportunity to package an idea, and quickly disseminate it among the community for multiple reactions. Creating social channels within the museum’s online environment offers a new means to communicate interactively with an audience and build membership and visitors to a museum.

The Museum of Modern Art’s Fan Page on Facebook has over 60,000 members, the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Fan Page has over 56,000 loyalists – the evidence exists. Museums can utilize their networks through email, wall posts, news feeds, and other interactive elements within the platform – in turn, allowing visitors to respond via comments and wall posts.

Facebook has done the unimaginable, and broken geographical boundaries, creating relationships for people who might have not have met otherwise. The same can be said for businesses that push forth and also take part in the online phenomenon. Some even say it has come to the point where not being on Facebook is similar to being phone-less.

For an artist or even a culture center, such as a museum, creating a social platform enables this connection to exist between artists, museums, critics, and fans so that they can communicate with each other directly, and increase the engagement level between the museum and the fan.

Simply said, creating and marketing this platform properly could create the lasting connection the arts industry is looking to enable, and not only lead to increased engagement digitally, but also lead to something more important – another $20 in the door.


I had the pleasure of attending WWE RAW last Monday night at the Air Canada Centre. Of all of the events I’ve attended in my lifetime I have to give credit to WWE for their massive stage productions, larger than life sound and lights and for their ability to engage the audience in all of their events.

I’ve followed WWE for many years (including back in the days when they were still known at the WWF with stars like Hulk Hogan, Jake The Snake Roberts, The Hart Foundation, and others), but I always enjoy going to their live events. They are always so much fun and it’s entertaining to watch the fans get so into every match.

The WWE have set the bar high as far as their online marketing initiatives are concerned. Their web-site is ranked 553 in the world and is accompanied by a very busy WWE youtube channel and their own social network – WWE Fan Nation. They employ about 560 employees and bring in almost $400 million a year in revenue. They’ve reached into TV, Film, Music, Pay Per View Programming, DVD and Video sales, digital, the internet, mobile, video games, advertising, merchandise and more!

At this particular RAW event they included a Toronto angle by bringing back Trish Stratus to not only host but wrestle! She definitely has star power and it was interesting to hear some of the things that she’s been doing since leave the WWE like opening a yoga studio and staring in her own travel tv show!

I took some pretty awesome videos and pics from the show Monday night. Here they are… Enjoy!

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TIFF is always a busy time of the year for film companies in general – but especially for film companies in Toronto. We were especially busy this year for weeks up to and during the festival.

Since my role in New Media is new to the film division of the company I work for, I was particularly busy creating various new media initiatives and especially supporting publicity in their busy role during the festival. One way that we worked with the media to support their needs was by taking any EPKs that we received for films, extracting the clips, trailers, interviews, high-res photos and various new media content from the discs they provided us with and uploading the content to our ftp in a web friendly format (with a secure login just for TIFF media). We found this to be so successful that our clips went viral VERY quickly! It also helped television media to know what clips we had available so that they could request specific videos rather than an entire digi-beta of all clips and video elements for a film which takes them time to go through and is also quite costly for us to produce on an as-needed basis.

As someone in a new role in the company, I was particularly pleased at how successful our initiatives were due to the good use we made of the resources provided to us by the film makers themselves.

Not only did I assist from a new media stand-point, but I also made use of the software on my company to make a TIFF DVD Reel that publicity could show in their suite at the festival.

Below is a copy of the TIFF DVD Reel I created. Enjoy!


Aside from my career in Online Marketing and Social Media, some of you may not be aware that I am also a DJ.

In the DJing world equipment is pretty standard… turntables, cd players, a mixer, amp, speakers, headphones, turntable needles and you are pretty much set.

Lately I’ve been using Serato to DJ out live at clubs, bars, raves and events and as much as I love that I don’t have to lug hundreds of records around with me anymore and have the convenience of having my entire music library on my laptop, with Serato there tends to be issues with unplugging and plugging in equipment in order to connect Serato to the system.

Pioneer announced that they have come out with a new CDJ turntable that blows away the competition and will also make it a lot easier to DJ live… in some cases with only a memory stick! This delightful innovation is called the CDJ 2000!

Check out this demonstration! 🙂



I don’t know if it’s because we went on a vacation recently, or if it’s because we’ve has such terrible weather all summer but recently we’ve been venturing out as tourists in Toronto to explore the area and see what this big beautiful city has to offer.

With our travels we’ve discovered that Steam Whistle Brewery serves free beer! All you have to do is walk in the door and they give you a couple of free coupons for 2 glasses of beer at their brewery!

We also ventured over to the new “Urban” Leon’s to look around. It’s a nice place – especially since it caters to us Condo folk. 🙂

We also went over to Centre Island and even rented a quad-ricycle! Winston, Kenny and I peddled around the island and saw some of the sights we haven’t been able to see this summer because of the City workers strike.

Here are some of the photos we took on our journey to the island! You’ll also see some photos of the crazy storm that hit about an hour after we got home!

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I’ve waited my entire adult life to see one band – and that band came to Koolhaus on Wednesday  12, 2009! The band I’m talking about – UNDERWORLD!

Instead of talking about how amazing it was. I thought I’d show you. I took photos and vidoes of every song at the concert… except for the encore. The hardest part about doing this was trying not to dance… which proved to be impossible. 🙂

Enjoy! And thank you Underworld for such an amazing show!

Here is the setlist:

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Kenny and I finally had the chance to get away for a holiday recently. We went to Bermuda to visit his friends George and Sandy and had an amazing time.  We saw so many things and did so much! It’s really had to describe all that we saw so I’ll post our photos instead. You can see from them just how beautiful Bermuda is and I can’t wait to go back!

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  • profileLisa Bassett is a Digital Marketing and Social Media professional from Toronto, Canada.