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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AoC2 Contributors (nice formatting)

A   Adrian Ho, Aki Spicer,
Alex Henault,
Amy Jussel,
Andrew Odom,
Andy Nulman,
Andy Sernovitz,
Andy Whitlock,
Angela Maiers, Ann Handley, Anna Farmery, Armando Alves, Arun Rajagopal, Asi Sharabi

B   Becky Carroll, Becky McCray, Bernie Scheffler, Bill Gammell, Bob LeDrew, Brad Shorr, Brandon Murphy, Branislav Peric, Brent Dixon, Brett Macfarlane, Brian Reich

C   C.C. Chapman, Cam Beck, Casper Willer, Cathleen Rittereiser, Cathryn Hrudicka, Cedric Giorgi, Charles Sipe, Chris Kieff, Chris Cree, Chris Wilson, Christina Kerley (CK), C.B. Whittemore, Chris Brown, Connie Bensen, Connie Reece, Corentin Monot, Craig Wilson

D   Daniel Honigman, Dan Schawbel, Dan Sitter, Daria Radota Rasmussen, Darren Herman, Dave Davison, David Armano, David Berkowitz, David Koopmans, David Meerman Scott, David Petherick, David Reich, David Weinfeld, David Zinger, Deanna Gernert, Deborah Brown, Dennis Price, Derrick Kwa, Dino Demopoulos, Doug Haslam, Doug Meacham,
Doug Mitchell, Douglas Hanna, Douglas Karr, Drew McLellan, Duane Brown, Dustin Jacobsen, Dylan Viner

E   Ed Brenegar, Ed Cotton, Efrain Mendicuti, Ellen Weber, Eric Peterson, Eric Nehrlich, Ernie Mosteller

F   Faris Yakob, Fernanda Romano, Francis Anderson

G Kofi Annan, Gareth Kay,
Gary Cohen, Gaurav Mishra, Gavin Heaton, Geert Desager, George Jenkins, G.L. Hoffman, Gianandrea Facchini, Gordon Whitehead, Greg Verdino, Gretel Going & Kathryn Fleming

H   Hillel Cooperman, Hugh Weber

J   J. Erik Potter, James Gordon-Macintosh, Jamey Shiels, Jasmin Tragas, Jason Oke, Jay Ehret, Jeanne Dininni, Jeff De Cagna, Jeff Gwynne & Todd Cabral, Jeff Noble, Jeff Wallace, Jennifer Warwick, Jenny Meade, Jeremy Fuksa, Jeremy Heilpern, Jeroen Verkroost, Jessica Hagy, Joanna Young, Joe Pulizzi, John Herrington, John Moore, John Rosen, John Todor, Jon Burg, Jon Swanson, Jonathan Trenn, Jordan Behan, Julie Fleischer, Justin Foster

K   Karl Turley, Kate Trgovac, Katie Chatfield, Katie Konrath, Kenny Lauer, Keri Willenborg, Kevin Jessop, Kristin Gorski

L   Lewis Green, Lois Kelly, Lori Magno, Louise Manning, Luc Debaisieux

M   Mario Vellandi, Mark Blair, Mark Earls, Mark Goren, Mark Hancock, Mark Lewis, Mark McGuinness, Matt Dickman, Matt J. McDonald, Matt Moore, Michael Karnjanaprakorn, Michelle Lamar, Mike Arauz, Mike McAllen, Mike Sansone, Mitch Joel

N   Neil Perkin, Nettie Hartsock, Nick Rice

O   Oleksandr Skorokhod, Ozgur Alaz

P   Paul Chaney, Paul Hebert, Paul Isakson, Paul McEnany, Paul Tedesco, Paul Williams, Pet Campbell, Pete Deutschman, Peter Corbett, Phil Gerbyshak, Phil Lewis, Phil Soden, Piet Wulleman

R   Rachel Steiner, Reginald Adkins, Richard Huntington, Rishi Desai, Robert Hruzek, Roberta Rosenberg, Robyn McMaster, Roger von Oech, Rohit Bhargava, Ron Shevlin, Ryan Barrett, Ryan Karpeles, Ryan Rasmussen

S   Sam Huleatt, Sandy Renshaw, Scott Goodson, Scott Monty, Scott Townsend, Scott White, Sean Howard, Sean Scott, Seni Thomas, Seth Gaffney, Shama Hyder, Sheila Scarborough, Sheryl Steadman, Simon Payn, Sonia Simone, Spike Jones, Sreeraj Menon, Stanley Johnson, Stephen Collins, Stephen Landau, Stephen Smith, Steve Bannister, Steve Hardy, Steve Portigal, Steve Roesler, Steven Verbruggen, Steve Woodruff, Sue Edworthy, Susan Bird, Susan Gunelius, Susan Heywood

T   Tammy Lenski, Terrell Meek, Thomas Clifford, Thomas Knoll, Tim Brunelle, Tim Connor, Tim Jackson, Tim Mannveille, Tim Tyler, Timothy Johnson, Tinu Abayomi-Paul, Toby Bloomberg, Todd Andrlik, Troy Rutter, Troy Worman

U   Uwe Hook

V   Valeria Maltoni, Vandana Ahuja, Vanessa DiMauro, Veronique Rabuteau

W   Wayne Buckhanan, William Azaroff

Y   Yves Van Landeghem

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The Rush is On!

Launch___rush_begins_2  Today we are calling on your efforts to help us push The Age of Conversation, for one day, up the Amazon charts. We are hoping to raise a few more dollars for Variety, the Children’s Charity and at the same time, to generate a wider audience for The Age of Conversation. You will notice (hopefully) a range of blog posts, tweets and diggs from today onwards. You will also now be able to find a reference to the book on Wikipedia courtesy of Chris Kieff.

Chris Wilson has organised this Bum Rush … and here are his recommendations for action:

Plan of Action (for March 29th)

With the infinite amount of social sites and connections on the web, this is a huge undertaking. That is why I came up with this plan of action list with the highest priority items at the top. The idea is to generate as many touch points around the web as possible so that it will be hard not to spot the Age of Conversation activity.

  1. Buy the Book & send others to buy the book. This is the number 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 this affiliate link, which will help us in tracking sales. Remember, all the proceeds from the book sales and referrals will go to charity.  http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1847992994?ie=UTF8&tag= drewmclellan-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325& creativeASIN=1847992994
  2. Blog About It - 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.)
  3. Twitter Commentary - Join Drew and I as we give a Bum Rush play-by-play on Twitter. (Follow us: @Freshpeel, @DrewMcLellan, @Servantofchaos) We also ask that everyone saying anything about the Bum Rush to use the code #AOC so that it can be picked up by Twemes.com
  4. Trackback or Comment on the post that Chris will leave here on March 29th at 12am CST, so that everyone can follow the conversation and help promote exposure on social sites (Digg, StumbleUpon, Del.icio.us, etc.)
  5. Digg the posts listed here & send emails and shouts to friends requesting Diggs.
  6. Stumble the posts listed & tell friends to do the same.
  7. Bookmark your posts on Del.icio.us
  8. Add your post to other social media outlets ( Technorati, Ma.gnolia, Furl, BlinkList, Newsvine, Facebook, etc.)
  9. Send an Old Fashioned email to your friends about the Bum Rush for AoC.
  10. Keep talking – Get on ooVoo, iChat, Aim, or where ever you like to talk, and start talking.

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PodCast with Anna Farmery

Late last year Drew and Gavin were interviewed by Anna Farmery for Show #133 of The Engaging Brand. You can listen to the show in a number of ways:

1) You can listen on your PC now without downloading any software just click here and it will take you to the podcaster news page. Then press the play button!

2) You can subscribe to the show via iTunes or

3) If you use a different podcatcher then you can subscribe using the following  http://www.podcasternews.com/feeds/enbr.xml 

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Marketing eBook Makes Cover Feature

Originally uploaded by servantofchaos

Arun Rajagopal has been a tireless promoter of the Age of Conversation. With the assistance of some friends, he has single handedly run a strong promotional campaign bringing the book to the attention of mainstream media in the Middle East. This weekend, The Age of Conversation is the cover story of the Dubai-based Khaleej Times’ Weekend magazine.

The magazine’s feature writer, Pratibha Umashankar, interviewed both Gavin and Drew and also features Arun, "the blogger in our backyard". Some of the images from our Flickr group were picked up for publication as well.

You can read the feature here or see some scans of the magazine at Arun’s blog.

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The Age of Alien Conversation

One of the prerequisites of the Age of Conversation is a good story. After all, what is it that you will be talking about?

And just when you thought it couldn’t get stranger, it appears that we have been picked up by aliens. That’s right … our very own Luc Debaisieux has lived up to his "mindblob" name and made contact with another species.

Catch the full story AND the PDF here.

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The Wired Cover

Wired Hard to believe … only two weeks in and we have sold around 680 books with almost $5,500 raised for Variety, the Children’s Charity. There has been a mountain of online buzz created (see our recent news over at Facebook) and now, unbelievable … the cover of Wired.

Actually, if you want to … you make your own Wired cover as well. Simply go here.

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Day 1 Update

Thanks to the combined efforts of Age of Conversation authors, we have had some excellent press coverage in some very reputable online publications. Over at Business Week, Bruce Nussbaum announced the launch and then asked the question, Are We Communicating Too Much. Be sure to drop by and give Bruce your view!

Nina M Lentini over at MediaPost gives us a good writeup here, using some great snippets from Ed Cotton’s and Julie Fleischer’s chapters (plus there is also a nice brief piece here), and Brian Reich also profiles the launch on Fast Company’s Expert Blogs.

Know of any other coverage? Be sure to drop in the comments for us all!

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Age of Conversation Launches

Age of Conversation
Originally uploaded by servantofchaos

Sydney, Australia; Des Moines, Iowa, USA, July 16, 2007 — In what may be a first-of-its-kind collaboration via the internet, more than 100 marketing professionals have joined together online to write The Age of Conversation, a book that will be published July 16. In addition to the downloadable e-version, the book will be available in limited quantities in hardcover and softcover. All proceeds from sales of the book will be donated to Variety, the Children’s Charity. The proceeds will be earmarked to help children in the authors’ home countries.

The book has an unusual story behind it, involving online connections between people around the world who have never met each other.

Drew McLellan, who heads McLellan Marketing Group, an advertising agency here, has been writing a blog online for since September 2006. His blog, www.DrewsMarketingMinute.com is among the 25 most-read marketing blogs in the world. McLellan’s partner in this adventure is another marketing blogger in the top 25, Gavin Heaton. Heaton is the Interactive Director of one of the world’s leading marketing and promotions agencies, Creata, where he is Director of Interactive. Heaton blogs at www.ServantofChaos.com.

In March, McLellan wrote about Wharton’s effort to create a collaborative book and Heaton commented, “And it sounds like it could be fun … but you know what, Drew? I reckon between a few of us we could knock out a short book and publish it. All we need is a theme and a charity …"

“Three e-mails later, we had named the book and the charity. It just fell into place, McLellan said. “The Age of Conversation was the prefect topic. The marketing industry is abuzz about how the citizen marketers are changing the landscape. This book captures that new phenomenon,” he added.

McLellan and Heaton, through their blogs, invited other marketing professionals and other bloggers to commit to writing an essay about conversation. They set what they thought would be an impossible goal – 100 bloggers. They received commitments from 104 authors in less than 7 days.

“What began as a comment online has grown into a major collaborative effort by marketing professionals from 24 states and nations, beyond the U.S.,” said McLellan. “Gavin and I were overwhelmed with the response.”

“We heard from people, telling us what they planned to write about,” Heaton added. “We’ve been amazed at the variety of approaches that have been taken, and with hardly any duplication or overlap. This book really explores the art of conversation and how that is changing the face of marketing from virtually every angle possible.”

A fellow marketing blogger in New York, Christina Kerley, had just lost her mother and many in the marketing blogging community were looking for a way to comfort her from afar. McLellan and Heaton decided that they would dedicate the book to Sandra Kerley, their colleague’s mother.

The Age of Conversation will be available in all three formats on July 16. Prices will be:
e-book: $9.99 ($7.99 going to charity)
paperback book: $16.95 ($8.10 to charity)
hardback book: $29.99 ($8.55 to charity)

Orders will be taken online at Lulu.com/ageofconversation.

Oh, and you can DIGG THIS here.

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The Word is Out

Adagebookstore In the last 24 hours, Drew and I have both spoken with Matt Kinsey from AdAge … and today The Age of Conversation is featured in the Bookstore. Take a look at the interviews and commentary. There are also a few excerpts from articles by Faris Yakob and Bob Glaza.

I also got a note from Jeremy Geelan to let us know that the book is also being featured by Social Computing Magazine. Make sure you check out both of these pieces, and do let us know when you spy something in the media in your part of the world.

Remember, Monday, 16 July is getting closer … we should have link pages to each of your sites this weekend!

Update: Social Computing Magazine features us again!

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