Colors of Amsterdam
> In 2010, Tony Judt warned, not long before his death, that the traditional way of doing politics in the West—through “mass movements, communities organized around an ideology, even religious or political ideas, trade unions and political parties”—had become dangerously extinct. There were, Judt wrote, “no external inputs, no new kinds of people, only the political class breeding itself.” Trump emerged six years later, channelling an iconoclastic fury at this inbred ruling class and its cherished monuments.
> But the problem of political representation in a polarized, unequal, and now economically debilitated society remains treacherously unresolved.
🔗 [What Are the Cultural Revolution’s Lessons for Our Current Moment?](https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2021/02/01/what-are-the-cultural-revolutions-lessons-for-our-current-moment)
Only a few of them are wrong. Of note: this doesn’t seem to cover the UK.
🔗 [Things That Are Different in Europe](https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2021/02/01/things-that-are-different-in-europe)
🔗 [The Conundrum of “Conundrum”](https://www.theparisreview.org/blog/2021/01/29/the-conundrum-of-conundrum/)
Looking at four months of numbers, here’s my theories of how to get more attention for my enterprise tech videos:
I do a lot of videos for my work – selling kubernetes and appdev stacks for enterprises, along with the services/consulting that go with it (hey! VMWARE TANZUUUUUU!). Over the past two months I shifted from longer form vidoes (30-50 minutes) to tiny ones.
Sort of counter-intuitively, tiny videos take just as much work as long ones – lots and lots of editing, making subtitles, making zaney thumbnails, and all the usual uploading posting around. Sometimes tony videos take more work than just uploading longer, 45 uncut minutes.
The results are dramatic though: the shorter videos I do get a lot more views and “engagement” than the longer ones. This fits common SEO, social/influencer hustler folklore: no one likes long form content. After over 15 years of podcasting and presenting and blogging, I know that folklore isn’t, you know, universally true.
The following tables are incomplete, it focuses on the tiny videos. See the taller table that follows for the numbers for the longer videos. (Click for the larger version of each chart.)
Table 01 shows the Dec 2020 and Jan 2021 tiny videos I did. I’ve been very time constraint of late (we have to – er, get to – home school a seven and ten year old, and also need to watch a 10 month old), so I’ve shifted to doing these small videos in the time I can find, often when I’m taking my baby daughter on a walk and she finally falls asleep:
Table 01: Tanzu Talk tiny videos (and some long), Dec 2020 to Jan 2020.
Table 02 shows the tiny videos I did back in the Spring (2020). I was similarly time-constrained – technically (and, mostly – hey, my therapist has helped me recognize that I’m a workaholic, but, like, the content I produce for work is my passion – my work isn’t just yelling at supply chain people and arts and crafting PowerPoint slides and pivot-tables…OK…I’ll take a breath…) I was on paternity leave, so I had to snatch the times I could. I uploaded these videos to my personal YouTube site (the Dec/Jan ones are on the VMware Tanzu channel), so their YouTube views are shit:
Table 02: cote.pizza tiny videos, Spring 2020.
I call these “cote.pizza” videos because that’s the URL for a CTA I had.
Then, for comparison, Table 03 the views for all the Tanzu Talk videos – most of them are long form and were only hustled with YouTube links in Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.:
Table 03: All Tanzu Talk videos, tiny and long, 2020
There are some key findings:
The major component I’m missing is following what happens when people click a CTA link. I encoded most all links I use for attribution to me, but I, of course, didn’t tell any of our web-funnel acquisition people this, so I don’t know how get those numbers. This would be extremely valuable info.
On the other hand, the price range of software and services (six to seven figure deals) I help sell is so high that having just one click, or just someone having seen and been influenced by my video evne though clicked nothing trackable.
Also, I’m concerned about echo chambers. Many of the “engagements” (likes and stuff) I get are from co-workers, which I value tremendously! There are, though, a sort of knowable set of “customers” who also engage. I need more insight into how far out of the echo chamber I’m reaching.
Let me state this clearly: I have no idea if all of this is helping the business. BUT IT SURE IS FUN TO DO!
All of that aside, let me tell you a (depressing?) secret: the only thing people care about are raw views. There may be some quibbling about completion rates, CTA following, etc.: but at the end, people will just remember the raw numbers. (Still, I’d like to have more visibility into the money I’m helping bring in and retain, but, hey, as I like to say, “I get paid either way.”)
Some additional notes as I think of them:
> Even actors don’t
> exactly love the spotlight they move through,
> as your sister, the actor,
> has told us; they just need to be lit
> for narrative motion
> to have meaning.
From “You’re the One I Wanna Watch the Last Ships Go Down With,” Brian Tierney
🔗 [Just add narrative motion for meaning](https://www.theparisreview.org/poetry/7618/youre-the-one-i-wanna-watch-the-last-ships-go-down-with-brian-tierney)
> Apple Watch owners are meant to feel like they’re walking right alongside the celebrity sharing their Time to Walk story, and stories are punctuated by the ambient sounds like birds, footsteps, breathing, and other people in the area. After a story has finished, each speaker provides three songs to listen to that are related.
Back to business, marketing:
> Apple is hoping that Time to Walk might serve as a gateway to getting people more involved with Apple Fitness+, which has been designed to be welcoming to people of all skill levels. Apple launched Apple Fitness+ last month, and the service offers workouts across a wide range of categories from dance and yoga to cycling, running, and HIIT.
🔗 [Hands-On With the New Apple Fitness+ ‘Time to Walk’ Feature](https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.macrumors.com/2021/01/25/time-to-walk-hands-on/amp/)
If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe. Carl Sagan.
In most enterprise tech marketing copy, it’s an anti-pattern to do the whole “you must first invent the universe” thing. Buyers and curious people already know that there’s market headwinds, things change faster than ever, new technologies, etc. They want to know exactly how you solve the problem, not that it exists.
Don’t confront me with my failures
I had not forgotten them. Jackson Browne.
Pranksters, nihilists, asshole trolls, concern trolls etc. – those who are doing it for the luls, likes, memes, and to entertain themselves. It can be in generic culture, in Wall Street stuff, and definitely in politics and culture war/criticism.
To some extent: “people as they’ve mostly always existed,” but, now, taking advantage of zero-cost and friction publishing and awareness building (“eyeballs”).
If it allows you to add a zaney thumbnail, it might be interesting. What I’ve found is that including links to YouTube in other channels doesn’t result in much traffic/views: people don’t follow the link to YouTube. Instead, posting your video natively in Twitter (2m20s max length) and LinkedIn (10m max length) works better – and, sure Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook, but my b2b stuff doesn’t work well there, wrong forum.
🔗 [YouTube is testing clips on live streams and VODs](https://www.theverge.com/2021/1/28/22254528/youtube-clips-alpha-twitch-mixer-facebook-livestreaming?scrolla=5eb6d68b7fedc32c19ef33b4)
This is like _Wow in the World_ except for…finance news? [overcast.fm](https://overcast.fm/+Ys-4s2P8Q)
How many hours a day do you put in at the desk?
Two hours in the late morning, two in the early afternoon, followed by a walk along the river to think over the next day. Then at six, Scotch and soda, and oblivion.
From Paris Review – The Art of Fiction No. 85, 1984.
Instagram, TikTok, Twitter – all these things – focus in just one thing, a photo, a tiny video, a sentence. That’s fine, often good. But you’re not given the chance to experience a whole thing, rather a multiparty thing – a complex thing. That’s an often missing form, “art” even.
Imagine zooming back to a year’s worth of Instagram photos. What would that be?
Extracting text, results from Scan Thing app:
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