Archive for March, 2010

Apple iPad Sold Out, Recession Is Over

  • at March 28, 2010
  • by Kroy
  • in apple

As I had pointed out in earlier posts, the Apple marketing machine is on course to ‘do it again’.

According to Apple Insider, Apple has already sold out its initial stock of iPad models via pre-orders. Sure, Apple may purposely have kept its stock fairly low to achieve the “we’re sold out already ‘cuz everybody wants our stuff” – aura. But according to Wall Street Journal sources familiar with this whole gig, well over one million iPads are on track to be sold over the next 3 months.

That’s one million customers spending upwards of $499 for a product they don’t really need.

This is just the latest example of how in this recession there are still plenty of people willing to part with their cash for what they want – as long as the hype is good enough and you can make them think your product/service is what they really want. Again, it’s about wanting, not needing.

I remember when, during the worst of our ‘recession’, the parking lots of upscale fashion malls in Scottsdale and Phoenix were completely full, and folks were still running around with their  shopping bags as usual. The media made it sound like everyone in the country would be living on the streets soon, but then you see this and figure out that just like iPads, a recession is pretty much what you make it appear to be. If you hype it enough, people will ‘buy’ it – regardless of what ‘it’ is.

Except the iPad actually has more naysayers than the recession, as I had pointed out earlier. Everyone ‘accepts’ that there’s a recession. But when the iPad was demo’ed by Steve Jobs, a lot of folks quickly turned to online forums and pointed out the glaring issues (no Flash, no multi-tasking, etc.) It doesn’t matter because those consumers that purchase an iPad right after launch are  generally not the same consumers that find reasonable problems with an item and make a calculated need vs.want/ or cost/benefit analysis. They want it, they buy it. And that’s who you’ll want to market to.

Adobe CS5 to launch April, will be 64bit

  • at March 25, 2010
  • by Kroy
  • in adobe

I’m beyond excited. Today I learned the highly anticipated Adobe Creative Suite 5 will launch in April – and my friend Gary Bettan from VideoGuys ( ) told me he had a dealer seminar today and it was announced that all CS5 programs will be 64bit.

This is huge. I’ve been waiting for this for four years since I’ve migrated all my workstations over to Windows 64bit. Adobe Premiere Pro CS4, while a fantastic, tremendously improved program, is still only 32bit, and so is the encoding software, Adobe Media Encoder.

Having those be 64bit will make a big difference on so many levels.

Adobe CS5 will be officially announced on April 12. If you wish to register for the online  Adobe CS5 launch event seminar you can do so here.

Comments Off on Matt Cutts Discusses How Google Crawls Your Site

Here is an excellent article from In this interview with Google Megalord Matt Cutts we learn how the Big G crawls your site, how the Google bot deals with duplicate content and affiliate links, and much more.

If you are on Cox Communication’s Premier plan and your modem is disconnecting when you try to upload anything all you’ll likely have the D-Link DCM-202.

Yesterday, Cox increased the speeds for Premier plan customers. Upload speeds were increased to 4 or 5 Mbps, downloads increased to about 25Mbps. Unfortunately Cox messed up and didn’t apparently test that their upgrade would work all modems on their approved list. The D-Link DCM-202 has massive problems with uploads on Cox’ new setup – it disconnects if you are trying to upload anything. Once you stop the upload attempt, the modem will reconnect. Downloads should be fine but even those might be affected.

Cox didn’t feel it’s necessary to at least acknowledge this problem on their web site so many customers were, like me, totally caught off-guard about it and have to figure this out on their own. The DCM-202 is one of the most widely used modems so there are probably lots and lots of customers who are undoubtedly freaking out right now. Lovely service, Cox.

Cox’ new infrastructure works best with DOCSIS 3.0 modems. The D-Link DCM-202 and almost all other currently available modems however are only DOCSIS 2.0 compliant. Apparently, D-Link is the only modem manufacturer that currently has these problems on Cox’ new deal. Cox and D-Link supposedly are working together to figure out what the problem is.

Since you’ll likelyneed your internet to actually work right now and not when Cox and D-Link get around to working things out you will need to get a different cable modem. Luckily, you can buy any common cable modem (for example, the Linksys CM-100 you’ll find at Target and Staples works just fine) – just don’t buy another D-Link DCM 202. It just won’t work.

Ideally you’ll purchase Motorola’s SB6120 modem though – it’s the only DOCSIS 3.0 compliant modem Cox can work with (disregard the Cisco modem they have on their list – according to a rep I spoke to, that one is not supported right now either). The Motorola SB 6120 also one of the few DOCSIS 3.0 modems currently available on the market. But you might need to order that one online – I was unable to get one at any of the Fry’s Electronic stores or three other electronic places I went to. It’s sold out everywhere apparently, at least at the time of this writing.

So summary: if you’re on Cox Premier and have the D-Link DCM-202 go out right now and buy a different cable modem. I hope this helps you and saves you hours on the phone with tech support and running around town trying to find the SB6120.

If you are the lucky owner of a Canon 5 D Mark II you may have heard that Canon finally released a firmware upgrade to allow your baby to record in 24p mode. It’ll also allow your 5D to record at 29.97 fps rather than the cumbersome 30p.

This video was created by the creators of Magic Lantern, which you can think of as open source software improvements to your 5D. It adds useful stuff such as zebra patterns and audio meters to your Canon 5D. It’s free and still in beta but it might be worth a shot if you are using your 5D to shoot movies. If you want to install Magic Lantern on your 5D make sure you read the entire wiki page (link above) before you do.

The Canon firmware upgrade should be available sometime in March on Canon’s DSLR site.

Comments Off on Lady Gaga: Product Placement, Pantyhose, Oh My!

Production/Editing tip:

When you watch a music video from a top shelf act, nothing is an accident. Nothing. Every little product placement, fetish item, gesture, look etc. is planned and usually has a reason for being there. “Sex sells” is a truism, but that’s not the full story. There’s some off-the-wall, even kinky stuff that just stands out. It’s meant to shock. Lady Gaga videos (and her appearances) might be some of the more obvious examples. Think the fact she is wearing pantyhose (really, all kinds of hosiery) in nearly every appearance is an accident (think ‘Love Game‘) ? No. She (and/ or her producers/PR team) understand the power of fetish.

Pay close attention and you notice some subtle audio ‘easter eggs’. People love easter eggs. And if you do ’em right they will help you sell better. Remember: your viewer’s subconscious is always on. You have to sell to it, too.

People LOVE pop culture references. This video has tons of them. Do you ever do that?

Notice how her branded earphones make an appearance? How about the ‘Beats Br Dr Dre‘ logo? How about the Virgin Mobile logo? Wonderbread? The product placement in this video is not very subtle, but it can work. Even if you don’t do product placement, there are lots and lots of other aspects you should study. Lady Gaga/Beyonce’s Telephone video isn’t the only video that incorporates symbolism, fetish visuals, product placement, etc of course. It’s just recent example with some obvious stuff happening. So even if you’re not very good at spotting these things yet, this video will be a wonderful training guide for you.

If you are shooting porn you may think this doesn’t apply to you. What does a top act’s music video have to do with your work, right? No, it’s much deeper than that. For right now, forget about anything but ‘getting into the consumer’s head”. Think subtle, even subconscious symbolism. Think about the way you shoot/edit and the way they shoot/edit. Think about how fetish items (in Lady Gaga’s case, pantyhose, piercings, latex etc) are introduced in an almost teasing manner. It certainly draws attention. Think about those barely audible audio easter eggs. Some naughty stuff is going on there. If your conscious mind doesn’t hear it, your sub-conscious mind does.

Think about…well, you get the point. Now think about  your trailers.

How can you make your trailers be more appealing? Stand out? Be remarkable? Entice without giving everything away? I’m not saying every one of your movies or trailers needs to be a overly complicated piece of avantgarde video art. Far from it. Even if the source material isn’t totally off the wall, your editing can make a huge difference. You can take vanilla material and make it sizzle. You can make people click through to the join page after seeing your trailer, and they don’t even know why. Your viewers should have images from your movie/trailer in their head when they’ve already moved on from your site. Which might make them come back. Believe it, I’m doing this every day. It is possible.

Watch Lady Gaga and Beyonce’s Telephone video for some inspiration.

Comments Off on 6 things about porn that are kind of gay when you think about it

Today’s shooting tips…

Here are 6 things about porn that are kind of gay when you think about it. As Seinfeld would say “(gay)…not that there’s anything wrong with it…”. Of course there’s nothing wrong with being gay. But if you shoot porn for straight consumers you should watch out for some stuff – like the following six ‘gay’ things. If you don’t think of them as gay, you’ll probably agree that they could be considered ‘gross’ or at least ‘not visually appealing to most male consumers’. Just because your competitors can’t be bothered to watch out for this doesn’t mean you should be like that too. Personally I’m always amazed how this doesn’t seem to bother a lot of shooters/editors. They figure, ‘well, it sells anyways’ so that’s good enough then apparently. No, it’s not. Not anymore. Oh you’re just doing your job? Your boss didn’t tell you specifically about this and you just want this to be done with? Well, that’s a valid excuse then. For those who wish to grow, and strive in this market, let’s ponder some things:

Six gay/gross/unappealing things:

1) More naked guys than girls. Gangbangs are the worst. One tiny porn girl and five huge sweaty fat guys covering her up for the entire scene. Yuck!

2) Guy jerking off for an hour standing over/next to the female talent before he can jizz over her face. Editors, please start noticing this stuff. Consumers do not like it.

3) POV-guy behind the camera somehow manages to include the phrase “my COCK!” every ten seconds.

4) Double Penetration scenes (DP) with one dick constantly brushing up on the other guy. Ewwww! I know, hard to avoid but please fucking TRY.

5) Cutting away from the girl and doing a closeup of guy’s face when he “orgams” (usually a pick-up shot). Instant boner loss.

6) Not really gay, but excessively long “man blanket” shots. (Man blanket = male talent covering up girl with his body)

Am I being petty? I don’t think so. My most successful content is that where I (or my content producing client) is careful about not having ‘too much man’ in the picture. Some of the best selling content doesn’t even show the male talent’s face or most of his body much at all. Might not always work for you depending on your style but try it.

Quick side note, I’m certainly aware that there are  shooters who incorporate this type of stuff on purpose to appeal to the hidden homo-erotic fantasies of  straight consumers.But if you aren’t doing this on purpose, and you are supposed to be shooting/editing with as little “dude stuff” in front of the lens as possible, then take those points above to heart and try some different angles and approaches. Yes, it might mean you’ll actually have to start thinking about shit on set again but hey, wouldn’t making more appealing content be worth it?

And yes, I’m writing this somewhat tongue in cheek. Having been a shooter and editor myself I understand that sometimes you just don’t have the time or attention to notice  these things. Or you get just a little too comfortable, especially if you’ve been shooting/editing for a while. After all, the “other guys” are doing it that way too, right? Or maybe you want your male talent to be as comfortable as possible so you let them run the show. And who knows, maybe there’s actually a big percentage of straight consumers who like watching that type of stuff, right? Well, don’t bank on it. Consumers have become more vocal over the past few years. Read their comments on review sites, or (gasp!!) tube sites and you’ll notice trends. More and more of your potential customers are basically telling you what they don’t like. This type of  insight into consumer preferences is unprecedented and something we couldn’t have dreamed of just a few years ago. You just have to pay attention now. If you want every edge possible then start seeing those trends and do your research – or be left behind.

Steve Jobs iPad

Update 03/12

Looks like I wasn’t as clever as I thought with the “shrinking Steve Jobs” thing – Rocket Fuel apparently thought of this gag before I did. Well, it is kinda obvious. Regardless, the actual point of this post still stands:

Marketing Tip: Selling Mediocre Stuff

Seth Godin, who (rightfully) says that one needs to have something truly remarkable in order to strive in today’s markets, is gonna hate this but here it goes…

You know, while the iPad has garnered some of the most negative views I’ve ever read from folks on forums and gadget comment sections, you have to remember that marketing is where it’s at.

Mediocre, crippled shit doesn’t sell – unless you’re Steve Jobs. I truly consider Steve Jobs one of the greatest marketers of all time (caveat below…). Steve can present a card board box  and we all think we can’t live without it. He is a master at ‘locking in’ customers. Everything Apple makes is ‘ground breaking’ and ‘revolutionary’, even though almost everything they’ve come out with had already been done in one form or another.

Reasonable, well informed people know this. But most consumers are neither reasonable nor well informed it seems. So you need to take this into consideration if you market something mediocre.
But Apple knows how to pull in the masses with the right words, the right design, the right hype, and fostering a cult following second to none in the gadget world. Steve Jobs is a marketing god – which is why even the iPad will sell well. Regardless of how you feel about Apple products, you should study the man.

Here is the problem: you are not Steve Jobs. So mediocre don’t cut it. Seth Godin is right after all…

Seth Godin is one of the most prolific marketers of our time. I have been devouring everything this man has published since Idea Virus and a lot of my marketing incorporates his ideas in some form. Any serious marketer needs to stock up on his books, especially All Marketers Are Liars,  and Purple Cow, and check out his blog musings on a regular basis.

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