Thursday, 11 June 2009


Those new to online video might be forgiven for thinking this vlog is nothing more than the fanciful ramblings of a sadly deluded individual. But they would be wrong. I've watched Peter's story unfold, from his 'First Try' video and the ensuing media storm that surrounded him. His story is truly inspirational. It also teaches us an important lesson about social media.

People are only too old to engage with social media if they think they are too old.

It is a mistake to assume all new technology based communication is automatically the exclusive presereve of the hip and the young. Peter also stands as a fantastic case study of how starting with what you can do can open doors to unimaginable opportunities. He says his viewing figures are going down but I'll contend that his influence continues to rise. And yet some of you reading this are already making a list of reasons why it worked for him and wouldn't work for you. Why not stop making that list and make a YouTube video instead!

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Creative Cravings?!

‘Creative Cravings’: really not the most compelling name I’ve come across; however, CafePress are based in the States and we are not. I was searching for UK-based company that provides a similar type of service. So, cringe-worthy name notwithstanding, we’ll give them a go. On the plus side the fact I created an online shop, designed and ordered WeDoAdventure merchandise to be delivered to our UK address all from the other side of Europe, and without any human interaction, must almost certainly be chalked up as progress! I guess wisdom says wait to confirm the quality of the finished products before starting to shout about it. So watch this space...!

Monday, 1 June 2009


‘Bing’ just opened itself a window as I launched Internet Explorer. Rather than click the ‘x’ in disgust I decided to put it to the ultimate test, what would under other circumstances be called ‘Googling oneself’! ‘Binging’ doesn’t sound too healthy when used in that context so I’ll refrain from attempting to coin a phrase. I typed in ‘Matt Hellyer’ and hit the magnifying glass. The ‘real me’ took the top four places and six out of the top ten, the first page of results.

What were those searchable online references to my good self? First was my Myspace profile page, even thought this lays mostly dormant these days. Next was a YouTube video on my talk74 channel, one that wouldn’t make my top ten most viewed. Novi Most, the charity I work with, took third place with their Bosnian website and my talk74 channel page took fourth. My previous employer’s dot com came in seventh and rounding off the page was a published comment from the Times Online.

Search is one of the most powerful drivers of internet traffic. Twitter, and similar services, are boosting the power of recommendation to generate interest but anyone wanting to be found online should still be bothered about search. So am I happy with Bing’s performance? In truth it doesn’t tell me too much. My experiment was flawed in that I searched for my name; only people who already know me can do that. To be truly discoverable online I need to turn up in results to searches for things people are actually looking for!