blogitto ergo sum

March 18, 2011

#172 – What iSiT? marketing? PR? is it?

Filed under: business buz,mmmmmmarketing,Opinionated — yael [ya-el] wagner @ 17:10
Tags: , , , , , ,

too often marketing people are teased, criticized, or worse, dismissed for using too many words to say less than little.  sometimes it’s even true.

i do my best to avoid this professional hazard.  i vividly remember when i just joined Sun, one of the engineers

me cutesy? no, thank you

describing my slides as “cutesy”.  i didn’t like it. maybe this is one of the reasons for my growing impatience for extra marketing wording.  enough intro.  to the point!

iSit is a very interesting company, claiming to be a “Web 2.0, Web 3.0 software application”.  Reasons to be proud?  “This highly creative startup idea was judged as the first place winner by Google, IBM and Sun Microsystems at a Startup Weekend Israel competition,” says says David Marcus, CEO of iSiT Ltd.

Positioning: “The iSiT online, fact checking software application is being developed so that people can verify the credibility of online information in real time,” says Marcus.

so far so good, even interesting.  more so since i am pretty sure that this is the David Marcus that was the Legal Counsel of LANNET, my entry company to tech/geek world.  i want him and his company to succeed.

my excitement and hope for their success though are somewhat weakened when i continue to read the press release.

my first press release writing experience took place, as a matter of fact, at LANNET when the VP my boss was out.  the CEO/president called me.  never before i was made more aware of the “weight” of each word.  yes, of course it was  in English and sensitive since we were just getting spun-off.  since then, i gained much comfort and confidence in contributing, reviewing, commenting on press releases.

as i was saying, i was ready to be all excited and supportive for iSiT, until i got to this “shopping around” list paragraph.  i stopped counting at 16, companies that is.

“When potential investors such as Google, Microsoft, Yahoo, AOL, Facebook, HP, SONY, Apple, Amazon, Citrix, Intel, Qualcomm, ARC Angle Fund, Trident Capital, BlackRock, The Blackstone Group, Barclays Global Investors N.A., Lehman Brothers – Wealth and Asset Management Division, Osage Partners, Goldman Sachs, i-Hatch Ventures, Launch Capital, Genacast Ventures, GSA Venture Partners, UBS AG, Barclays Global Investors, State Street Global Advisors, JPMorgan Chase, Chris Dixon, Ron Conway, Reid Hoffman, Esther Dyson, Peter Theil, Marc Andreeson, Arnon Katz, Jeff Bezos, Chris Sacca, Mike Maples, Andy Bechtolsheim and others whose investments are listed on NYSE, NASDAQ and AMEX equity markets are seeking creative consumer Internet, new media, social media, Web 3.0 software applications that could enhance their ROI they become more than eager to share coffee with us.” [from their press release]

Who, in their right mind, would list all these as a proof of [potential] success?   don’t you know that we humans cannot well process lists exceeding 3-7 items?  you may be the Business Development VP trying to prove your value, or maybe the CMO, and you should know better.  pick no more than five to list, and better yet, get a quote…  something that may be perceived as a compliment, sign of interest, endorsement…  nada.

and then you may be the CEO of a start-up that have a firm belief in name dropping.  but are you sure that publicly listing all your potential investors, angels or acquirers is what will get where you want to go?  seriously?

what am i missing? after all, by the time i was done with reading this impressive list, my coffee had gone cold.

good luck.




  1. discussing the blog post over dinner, a possible reason/justification for the extremely long list was offered:
    given that most people do not read press releases to their end, what if the real reason behind it isn’t being less than professional but wanting every search for one of those companies/angels/investors to direct the searcher to this very press release?… was that the reason, Mr. Joel Leyden from
    Leyden Digital PR,SEO,Social Networking Group? please do tell.

    Comment by yael wagner — March 19, 2011 @ 02:03 | Reply

  2. I love the post. Totally agree with it. If the purpose of listing the names was – as you suggest in your follow-on comment – to increase search results, then the boundary between news and SEM is blurred beyond belief. News is news. To pepper a news release with key words is as bad as peppering a tweet with hash tags: the message gets distorted and no longer makes any sense. Rant over 🙂

    Comment by Ruth — March 21, 2011 @ 02:19 | Reply

    • 🙂 we have our share of press releases, don’t we?

      Comment by yael wagner — March 21, 2011 @ 02:33 | Reply

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