16Oct10
Give the Gift of Water this Blog Action Day #BAD10

Today is Blog Action Day, a day where bloggers from around the world come together to support a single cause. This year’s cause is water.

Right now, almost a billion people on the planet don’t have access to clean, safe drinking water. That’s one in eight of us.

Unsafe water and lack of basic sanitation cause 80% of diseases and kill more people every year than all forms of violence, including war. Children are especially vulnerable, as their bodies aren’t strong enough to fight diarrhoea, dysentery and other illnesses. The UN predicts that one tenth of the global disease burden can be prevented simply by improving water supply and sanitation.

And you can make a change in this situation.

For the Age of Conversation 3, we have partnered with charity: water – one of the non-profit partners associated with Blog Action Day. This means that the profit from every book purchase will support the UN’s effort to bring clean, safe water to millions of people.

So what can you do?

  1. Buy a copy of Age of Conversation 3 for each of your customers – they’ll love it and they’ll love you:
  2. Make an additional donation at our charity: water page
  3. Insert the Blog Action Day widget on your blog

Don’t forget to become a Fan of the Age of Conversation on Facebook.

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9Oct10
What You Can Do on Blog Action Day – Join the Age of Conversation Bum Rush

I know some of you will have already purchased a copy of Age of Conversation 3: It’s Time to Get Busy – and I do thank you for that. But I have new news for you, and an idea I’d like you to action. And for those of you who work for agencies or who clients you need year-end gifts for, listen up!

The Age of Conversation Official Charity – charity: water

The first piece of news is to confirm that the charity that benefits from each and every sale of each and every book, is charity: water. charity: water is a non-profit organization bringing clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations. 100% of public donations directly fund water projects.

Amazingly, just $20 can give one person clean water for 20 years. An average water project costs $5,000 and can serve 250 people with clean, safe water – so purchasing a copy of the Age of Conversation 3 really can make a difference to someone’s life!

An AoC3 Bum Rush for Blog Action Day, October 15

As you probably know, the upcoming Blog Action Day is October 15 – and this year’s focus for Blog Action Day is water. To participate in Blog Action Day, you simply register your blog and then write a post. BUT what can you write about? Here’s where Age of Conversation comes in!

Charity Water is one of the participating partners for Blog Action Day. So what I’d like you to do is to help us with a Bum Rush on the Amazon charts – generate sales for AoC3 and raise money for charity: water.

The step-by-step is as follows:

  1. Buy the Book and send others to buy the book. If you work in an agency, get your agency to purchase multiple copies and give them out as year end gifts. This is the #1 call to action, because this is where we want to see the most impact. NOTE: Please buy 1 copy at a time because Amazon counts bulk orders once, and please use these affiliate links, which will help us in tracking sales. Remember, all the proceeds from the book sales and referrals will go to charity water:
  2. Register with Blog Action Day – Help raise the profile and participate in a huge global effort around water by registering for Blog Action Day.
  3. Blog About Blog Action Day, focusing on AoC3 - Make sure you have a prominent link to the Amazon listing so that readers can easily purchase the book. (Remember to use the affiliate link above. All of these earnings will go to charity as well.)
  4. Twitter Commentary - Join the other authors as we give a Bum Rush play-by-play on Twitter. We also ask that everyone saying anything about the Bum Rush to use the code #aoc3 so that it can be picked up by What The Hashtag.
  5. Trackback or Comment on the post that I will leave here on October 15, so that everyone can follow the conversation and help promote exposure on social sites (Digg, StumbleUpon, Del.icio.us, etc.)
  6. Digg the posts listed here and send emails and shouts to friends requesting Diggs.
  7. Stumble the posts listed and tell friends to do the same.
  8. Bookmark your posts on Del.icio.us
  9. Don’t forget Facebook – Make sure to become a Fan of AoC3 and to contribute to our wall
  10. Send an Old Fashioned email to your friends about the Bum Rush for AoC.

Oh, and if you have any others ideas, I’d love to hear them. Feel free to leave a comment below or over on the Age of Conversation fan page.

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26May10
171 Authors Take the Online Marketing Conversation to Print

New York, NY (May 07, 2010)—Almost three years ago, an online conversation between two marketing pros—an American and an Australian—evolved into a collaborative writing effort by more than 100 bloggers from nine countries, and was aptly titled The Age of Conversation. Fast forward to today and the abstract experiment is now a concrete treatise on the state of social media and marketing best practices as a whole. With Drew McLellan and Gavin Heaton still firmly at the helm, the third book in the Age of Conversation series has become a veritable “who’s who” of the world’s leading marketing bloggers. Age of Conversation 3 (202 pages; hardcover; paperback; Kindle; ePub) was published by new digital publishing company Channel V Books (www.ChannelVBooks.com), and is now available through all major online retailers, as a Kindle e-book, and will soon be available as an ePub for other digital readers.

Age of Conversation 3 captures the distinct shift from social media as a hypothetical consumer loyalty tool, as it was considered only a little more than a year ago, to its current state as a staple in the modern marketing toolbox. Although the book covers more than just social media, the topic is ubiquitous among the book’s 10 sections: At the Coalface; Identities, Friends and Trusted Strangers; Conversational Branding; Measurement; Corporate Conversations; In the Boardroom; Innovation and Execution; Influence; Getting to Work; and Pitching Social Media.

“We have seen an incredible shift in the role of social media over the past three years. It has moved from an outlier in the marketing mix to one of the strategic pillars of any corporate marketing or branding exercise,” said Drew McLellan. “And it doesn’t end there,” adds Gavin Heaton. “As the many authors of this new book explain, the focus may be on conversation, but you can’t participate in a conversation from the sidelines. It’s all about participation. And this book provides you with 171 lessons in this new art”.

The genesis for the series itself has all the makings of a thrilling read: regular correspondence between people around the world; a proactive collaboration between 15 countries; and two marketing professionals who have never met each other face to face, scrambling to learn how to publish a book from the ground up.

It all started when McLellan blogged about a similar collaborative book effort and Heaton wrote to him to suggest they get a few fellow bloggers to produce a marketing book in the same vain. Three emails later, and they had named the book and set what they thought would be an impossible goal: 100 bloggers. Within seven days they had commitments from 103. Back then, the marketing industry was abuzz about how citizen marketers were changing the landscape, whereas the second two editions have revolved primarily around the growing field of social media and how its methodologies have affected marketing as a whole. What all three books have in common is that they each capture a uniquely global vantage point.

The first Age of Conversation raised nearly $15,000 for Variety, the international children’s charity, and the Age of Conversation 2 raised a further $10,000 for Variety. This year’s proceeds will be donated to an international children’s charity of our authors’ choosing.

McLellan, who heads McLellan Marketing Group, a Des Moines, Iowa advertising agency, has been writing DrewsMarketingMinute.com for several years. Heaton, who works for global software giant, SAP, writes ServantofChaos.com from Sydney, Australia. McLellan and Heaton have used their blogs to promote each book’s crop of contributors.

Needless to say, an ambitious online marketing book will be paired with an ambitious online marketing campaign. All 171 bloggers will use their respective online platforms—their blogs, Twitter, Facebook and other social media profiles, and websites—to promote their co-authors and book sales.

To request a review copy of Age of Conversation 3, please contact Gretel Going at gretel@channelvmedia.com or 212.680.0179.

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26Mar10
Meet Our Publisher – Channel V Books

Finally, we get to tell you the good news about our publishing partners.

But first, some brief background.  As you may know, we are not book publishers.   When we got the idea for the first Age of Conversation — it was our original intention just to do an e-book.  But the authors really, really wanted a “real” book they could hold, give away to clients and put on their coffee table.

So naturally — we punted our way through the first Age of Conversation and Age of Conversation 2.  We won’t go into detail about all the challenges but they were many.  Some involved blood loss — but we got it done.

When we announced Age of Conversation 3 — we got an e-mail from two of the authors from the second book — Gretel Going & Kate Fleming.  Unbeknownst to us, they had started a publishing company called Channel V Books and they wanted to help us.  Please be clear … help us = do it all for free in the total spirit of the books!!

As contributing authors, Gretel/Kate and her team were familiar with our past struggles getting this book out through various self-publishing avenues. They were in a position to provide us with a fast turnaround time and broad distribution for the book without the hassles we’ve faced in the past. So, rather than deal with all the publishing nuances and details as we had in the past, we took them up on their offer and have benefited from an all-inclusive model that provides the flexibility and freedom of self-publishing but the comprehensive, turnkey services of a traditional publishing house.

Although we didn’t take them up on all of their services due to the nature of this project, I can share the key differentiators between CVB and a service like Lulu.com for those of you who have some interest or may be thinking of publishing your own book.

In particular, their in-house management of the entire publishing and marketing processes from start to finish (often working with the author from the beginning to shape the manuscript for his/her audience and create their platforms), and their seamless connection to major online retail distribution channels such as Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Finally, they handle all royalty and online distribution/fulfillment, which allows authors to focus on personal goals and business objectives, rather than on the business of their book.

Here’s my shameless plug for these really talented and smart folks:

They work with business thought leaders who need to publish books in order to promote themselves and their businesses, solidify their credibility and attract new opportunities—but don’t have the time (or desire) to learn and manage the intricacies of the publishing business in the process. Channel V Books bridges the gap between self-publishing and traditional publishing by offering the best of both worlds: the highest production quality, distribution channels, visibility, creative flexibility, ease and, most importantly, profitability.  To learn more about Channel V Books, visit  their website.

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