Sunday, September 12, 2010

Think Like a Consumer

Businesses have to think like consumers when it comes to gaining search rankings.

One thing I've learned from my experience is that when businesses start out a pay per click or SEO campaign, they like to list all their business terms when coming up with target keywords, which effectively loses sight of the consumer.

You as a business must learn to separate marketing terms from consumer terms. Successful SEO and PPC require targeting of consumer terms.

An example is targeting the keyword "affordable" which is a marketing term. Consumers don't search "affordable", they search "cheap".

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Beatles Limited Edition Stereo USB released by Apple and EMI

Here's a neat package. The Beatles and EMI are releasing a Limited Edition USB shaped like an apple and loaded with the remastered audio for 14 stereo Beatles titles and 13 mini-documentary films.

The 16 GB USB holds music formats in FLAC 44.1 Khz 24 bit and 320 kbps mp3 formats.

Since there are only 30,000 units of this limited edition, I suppose the $270 they are charging will attract the true Beatles fans.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Adam Samberg - I Threw it on the Ground

I love this video! Instant Classic! "Happy Birthday to the Ground!"

Friday, October 16, 2009

JetBlue spammed me

Dear JetBlue,

On May 21, 2008, I searched for flights to Florida on which referred me to JetBlue's website. I signed up using jetblue@( as a trick I learned during my online marketing career.

July 4, 2008 I received a registration confirmation for my upcoming flight (July 26, 2008).

July 15, 2008 I received the following spam from "" sent to jetblue@(

A Google search for "jetblue doyouhaveasecret" brings up the following cached result. Someone else on Twitter experienced this same spam and knew it was from JetBlue. Very few people track and identify how spammers got their email address.

If you want further proof, here is the raw text format of the email.

I presented this evidence to JetBlue but I haven't gotten any admittance of guilt -- That's all I'm looking for at this point. I'm not saying that I believe a publicly traded corporation would intentionally spam customers this junk. This was probably done by some IT employee with access to the entire JetBlue customer database and either sold the list or used it to promote his or her own crappy business.

Dear Nicholas,

Thank you for contacting JetBlue Airways regarding your TrueBlue account email. We are grateful for the opportunity to address your concern.

In viewing your TrueBlue account you are set to receive promotions and emails regarding current sales. We are unable to explain the possibility of spam being sent to this address as only JetBlue emails are routed to it. We can only suggest you contact your internet provider with any further questions. If you would no longer like to receive promotions please contact us at 1-800-JETBLUE (5388-2583) and we can further assist you.

We are grateful to have you as a member of our TrueBlue family and look forward to welcoming you onboard JetBlue for future jetting!


TrueBlue Customer Service Crew
JetBlue Airways
Crewmember 25211

Telling me to contact my internet provider is a pretty weak response. Here's another response:
Dear Mr. Lee,

Thank you for your patience as we looked into your claim. We regret any thing may have given you the impression that your unique email has been shared inappropriately or sold by JetBlue. We realize your privacy is of great concern to you.

We have researched your claim and found that we have only passed this to our internal automatic contact system for sending an itineraries and your TrueBlue statements to you. We show that you completed your TrueBlue registration on July 4, 2008 and at that time indicated you wanted to receive promotional offers.

We have also noted that you booked a reservation on May 8, 2008 with KAYAK services and at that time, this same unique email address was submitted as a contact by you. We cannot track what KAYAK has done with this information.

Although we understand and sympathize with your situation, we feel we have kept our word in maintaining the privacy of your contact information and respectfully deny any request or compensation.

We welcome you to our TrueBlue membership and look forward to welcoming you onboard many flights in the future.


Shauna Seymour
Specialist, Customer Feedback
JetBlue Airways

Pointing the finger at is quite ridiculous. If you understand how Kayak works it simply redirects you to the airline company's website after selecting your flight. No registration information is given to JetBlue's complete denial despite being caught red-handed is appalling.

This is a vulnerability any company, small or large, faces when handling customer data. Businesses have a legal responsibility such that each employee who is exposed to confidential data must sign a confidentiality agreement. At best it acts as a deterrent and most employees won't risk losing their job over it. Basically stealing company emails is theft and for those employees who have this level of access, it's as easy as stealing office supplies.

The curious thing in this specific incident is that after I notified JetBlue about this problem, I haven't received any further emails from even though I didn't "unsubscribe". Spammers don't stop emailing you or selling to other spammers once they have your email. Perhaps my issue caused a stir internally leading to the employee quietly removing my email from the spam list? It seems likely.

Please, JetBlue, do the right thing and apologize and admit that there was a possible breach of privacy.


Saturday, October 10, 2009

Photoshop Hand Tool stuck

When working in Photoshop I would frequently get stuck on the hand tool and it would not change no matter which tool I selected. Some searching on Google gave the advice to restart Photoshop but that did not work. Sometimes it would go away on it's own if I did something else. I have now discovered that all you have to do is press the space bar. I'm using CS3 and it's been mentioned that it occurs in CS2 as well. Let me know if this happens to any CS4 users. By the way, I'm looking forward to CS5! Maybe I will get a copy :)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Dammit, I should have moved to Cityplace.

With a fibre optic network going directly into the building, at every third floor, more or less and then being distributed by ethernet, this is the fastest residential Internet access at 100mbps (50 times faster than cable and 2,000 times faster than a 56k modem).

It's the most technologically advanced Digital Neighbourhood in Canada with $30 million spent on a high-capacity fibre-optic network.

If I had just known this two weeks ago, I would have moved to Cityplace!

Here is another great blog about it along with great comments.

Here's why you need to hate Bell. They are ruining the internet. Thanks to CRTC for increasing the stranglehold that the monopoly has on Canadian internet.