Last Minute Affiliate Summit Hotels #asw12

If you’re like me, you forget to book things early. I use TripIt and Evernote to keep me organized with travel info (love that you can just forward a travel receipt email to [email protected] and you’re all set), but I always forget to book planes, trains and hotels.

I finally got my flights to and from Vegas for Affiliate Summit all scheduled using Hipmunk on the iPad, which is fantastic and painless last week.

However, I’m still looking for a good hotel room for Affiliate Summit since I waited so long. I might just wait until noon on Saturday the 7th when I fly in now that I’ve found Hotel Tonight…

Hotel Tonight: “Last Minute Deals on Hotels”

Nah, probably not (don’t want to sleep in the desert again). However, next time you get somewhere and need a room (and have an iPhone), this looks like a winner.

My Experiment With Digital Nomadicism

I’m technically on family holiday vacation this week, holed up in a lovely cabin in the mountains north of Asheville.

We have wifi here, but I decided to opt for the Touch and my Blackberry (and Kindle of course) over lugging up the Macbook Pro. I’m actually writing this on the Touch with the fantastic WordPress app. Honestly, it’s pretty smooth and I need to do this more frequently.

What I’ve realized this week is that I can do most everything that I do on my laptop with just the Touch and the Blackberry. Tweeting, reading feeds in Google Rader, answering email, playing in Facebook, and now blogging are almost more enjoyable on the Touch over the laptop.

But what about “business stuff” like checking stats, reading and writing Docs and spreadsheets or FTP’ing into sites? All are (easily) doable and smooth in this sort of a mobile scenario. Actually, I’m really enjoying stretching myself and learning the new skill of mobile aptitude.

Of course, much of the content I create and consume is based in cloud computing rather than relying on a desktop. I make heavy use of all the Google apps. When I have needed a doc, I just access it in either Dropbox or on drop.io since I keep things sync’d on those places anyway. It’s worked out well.

So, my grand experiment in digital nomadicism is going surprisingly well. I could easily see myself just bringing the Touch and Blackberry to Affiliate Summit this month and leaving the Macbook home. 8 of my text books for the coming semester are in the Kindle, so my load for school will def be the Touch (Bible software apps are tremendous), blackberry and Kindle.

Digital nomadicism isn’t for everyone, of course. I unabashedly rely on web and cloud apps over desktop bound software and I’m not tied to an enterprise infrastructure that requires any special software. But a lighter load in a new year is always a good thing!

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Attractive Microblogging for Marketers 301

During my presentation called “Leveraging Social Media” at Affiliate Summit East, I took up most of the allotted hour to discuss tools and strategies that affiliate marketers could use to help them both better monitor and better participate in the increasingly important social networks out there in the wild.

This is an important issue because not only are these networks (in my presentation we touched on Twitter, Friendfeed, Seesmic and Facebook, but there are dozens of others) important for “traffic” but these hubs of communities have become an invaluable source for marketers to find conversions, early adopters and brand evangelists.

The main questions that most people had during, after and in the week since about the presentation pertained to the “how” aspect of using these networks in a responsible manner.

It’s not an easy question to answer since a great deal of operating in the social web is subjective and full of variables associated with individual programs, personalities and the social networks themselves.

At the end of the day, my constant recommendations all went along the lines of “do your homework, know the community and don’t feel obliged to use services such as ping.fm to cover everything.” In fact, I advise marketers to generally stay away from services like ping.fm because the fine line between “participant” and “spammer” is so easy to cross (and so easy to seemed to have crossed).

In other words, be interesting and provide a service (such as pointing to relevant info, even if its yours) in a responsible (whatever that means to you) manner.

DeWitt Clinton gets very geeky and brings in another aspect that you might want to consider if you’re a marketer with a little bit of know-how… attractiveness.

Head over to his blog and read the rest of the entry with the examples he gives. It’s a powerful read that points to the need for both functionality and appeal as you get your messages out there (and aren’t all messages marketing messages?):

Microblogging syndication formats » DeWitt Clinton: “This is just the beginning — I feel I’m only scratching the surface of what can be extracted from existing syndication formats. For example, comment stream aggregation (via the comments element or RFC 4685 autodiscovery) is a great next step after this. And I only call out FriendFeed because they’re the best at aggregating multiple content sources, but these concepts apply to any content aggregator, and finding a way to reuse existing formats like RSS and Atom to create rich presentations automatically will enable us to do more with less manual work between aggregators and publishers.”

While practicality is important to reach, don’t discount the need to reach people through visual appeal!

Affiliate Summit Meet Market Becoming the Place to Be

At the Affiliate Summit West event in Las Vegas in January, the Sunday “Meet Market” took on a whole new dimension. Rather than a cavernous room with sparsely attended tables and a disinterested audience, the the Vegas event launched a Meet Market that was packed and full of considerable buzz about the affiliate industry.

Hopes were high for this week’s Affiliate Summit East Meet Market. And, ASE did not disappoint…

The room in which the Meet Market took place was absolutely packed and every table was surrounded by interested participants.

What makes the Sunday Meet Market different from having a booth in the main exhibition hall on Monday and Tuesday? I asked that question to a number of attendees and most expressed (both on the exhibitor and non-exhibitor side) that the Meet Market allows for more intimacy than having a full fledged booth. Plus, the event happens on the “first” day of the show (even though many attendees are flying in on Friday and early Saturday in order to take advantage of the networking opportunities then), so there is an excited energy that runs throughout the crowded room.

While there are certainly benefits to having a booth (branding, affiliate recruitment, a space to work deals and a way to get your message out), the Meet Market is quickly becoming a can’t miss event at the Summit.