As Evolven’s marketing director since 2010, I directed all phases of both the creative and technical elements of marketing initiatives including event planning and organization, brand creation, print/Web collateral development, channel partner cultivation, lead generation, as well as running webinars.

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Email: martinperlin@yahoo.com



Google 'Psycho' Analytics

When our online world crosses with reality, can we use our online marketing indexes for gauging progress in our real life?


Food trays and plastic cups littered the floor. An easel with a blank canvas stood in the middle of the small studio apartment. Mid-day light flooded the room through the window. Frank slowly opened his eyes, and rubbed his stubbly face. In the bathroom, he splashed some water on his face. He looked at the calendar. It was Thursday, and the day was circled in pencil scratches. The phone rang.
"Hey Frank! It's Pat, what's going on," the friend said.
"Pretty good, you know, same old same old."
"You sure? How come you don't return calls?"
"You called?"
"Three times today."
"Guess I missed the phone."
"Do you read emails anymore? Are you even online."
"You bet. You don't exist if you're not online."
"Why don't you answer my messages?"
"Ok," Frank relented, "look Pat, I've been under a lot of pressure lately. You know, rent, food, basic survival. Sorry I just have had other priorities."
"No problem, brothah, I'm here for ya."
"OK, maybe I'll catch up with you later."
Frank put down the phone and turned to take a long hard look at the blank canvas now bathed in sunlight.

Frank rode train into the city. The car was mostly empty. In his notepad, he sketched the windows, and the shadows on the ground. The train pulled to a stop and he put his drawing pen in his shirt pocket, barely jumping out the closing doors. Rising up from the subway system, he was in midtown Manhattan, and walked over to an astute building with a doorman. The doorman knodded at him, and Frank took the elevator to the 4th floor. Exiting the elevator, he walked down a long, cooly lit hallway to a glass door. The sign on the door read: Dr. Mortimor Pressinger, Personal Therapy and Psycholoanalytics.

The waiting room was empty. Frank slumped into a stiff chair and stared at the tropical fish floating back and forth. The secretaries desk was empty. The door to Dr. Pressinger's office opened, and the therapist walked out, checked on the waiting room. Seeing Frank, he closed the waiting room door and bid farewell to his previous client.

The waiting room door opened again. "Come Frank, let's talk."
Frank followed Dr. Pressinger into his office. Dr. Pressinger was of moderate height, thin and pale looking. The office was wood panelled and carpetted, yet minimally decorated. A laptop computer was on the desk.
Frank sunk into a big, puffy easy chair. Dr. Pressinger sat on the other side of the room.
"So Frank, how've you been?"
"Uh, not bad, gettin by."
"How's your painting coming," the therapist asked, leaning forward.
"I think I'm making progress."
"Hmm, that's an interesting answer, I thought I was supposed to make the psychological assessments."
"Ok, ok. I got the canvas set up, you know, like we talked about. But I haven't been able to go further. It's like, it's like I'm, well I'm just stuck."
Dr. Pressinger squinted his eyes. "Who do you paint for?"
"Who do I, uh, well, myself. I want to paint for myself."
Dr. Pressinger noted something in his notebook. "So let me ask you again, how's the painting coming?"
"It's hard, I'm just not connecting, like I have no energy for it. I'm tired. I sleep in, and barely can move myself to clean or take care of myself."
A smile cracked across the therapist's thin lips. "I know."
"You know? What do you mean, you know?"
Dr. Pressinger leaned over and turned the laptop around. "Look Frank, you inner self is reflected in many things around you - your style of dress, your occupation, your level of tidiness and - the performance of your website.
"Look at this, according to Google Analytics, over the last few weeks traffic to your website has dropped tremendously. Last week it flatlined for 3 days. And you've barely made a Tweet on Twitter since last month."
"What are you saying?"
"What I'm saying is that you've hit a slump."
"Well, uh, what should I do? Meditation? Positive Reinforcement?"
"You've got to improve your presence on the web and get greater exposure to the Google search spiders, that way you can raise your placement in the organic search results and have a better chance of improving traffic to your site!"
"Maybe I need prozac. Something to pull me out of the pits."
"No, you need to be more active in Flickr. Add more images, join more groups get your online presence to more active." He handed Frank an article about Online Marketing Growth and Flickr.
"Geez. It looks like a lot of work," Frank snickered, flipping through the 25 page guide.
"It's worth it. It's the fastest way to push your portfolio to the widest audience."
"What if no one notices?"
"Then start Tweeting. Your last Twitter post was 'Ronnie Lee Gardner to be executed by firing squad in 20 minutes'"
"I know, I was feeling kind of in the dumps that day, maybe I was jealous. It was a Twitter trending topic at the time."
"That's terrible!"
"I know, I know I should be more positive."
"No! You need to at least have a couple keywords! And you'll be found faster if you hashtag the keywords."
Frank sat up in the puffy chair. "So what should I be aiming for, painting"
Dr. Pressinger shook his head, and pulled at his hair. "Painting? Painting?! Do you have any idea of how competitive those keywords are? You'll be a drop in the ocean. Niche, Frank. Niche! You've got to focus on a niche audience, like 'flower oil painting' or 'fruit acrylic painting'."
"You mean in the text of my website?"
"Text? Frank, how long have we been meeting. What will it take to get through to you. Google doesn't see your site like we do. The spiders go into the code.
Text is the least of your issues. You need metatags! And title tags for links, and alt tags for images. Tags! Frank. Where are your tags?"
"Ok, yeah, I remember now, we talked about it a few months ago. That was when I first told you about my father breaking a shovel while trying to get me to clear the snow from our driveway."
"And what have you done since. Look at your Google site ranking. It's barely moved. Frank you're not going anywhere!"
Frank stared at the Google Analytics dashboard in despair and just shook his head. "It's hard having a mirror so sharp put in front of you."
Dr. Pressinger leaned forward. "OK, so what about what we talked about last week. Hmm?"
"Um, you mean, signing up on Wikipedia?"
"Yes, well, anything?"
"Uh, yeah, well, I posted an article about my artwork, but uh, the Wiki editor took it down, said it violated Wiki rules and didn't have widespread public significance."
"Did you write it like we discussed?"
"Uh, I didn't really understand, so I put up the ad to my last gallery exhibition. That's a no-no right? No self-promotion?"
The therapist rolled his eyes upward. Dr. Pressinger pulled the laptop back, and clicked on some more links. "And what is this, Frank?!"
A large picture of a dead, rotting rat filled the screen. Small flies were crawling across the carcass.
"Yeah, that's the latest thing in my portfolio. I saw it in an alley and took the picture with my cell phone camera. I liked the way the light fell across the body. I know it's kind of morbid."
"No Frank. No! Do you know the significance of this?"
"I guess it was a cry for help?"
Dr. Pressinger looked down, and slapped his thigh. "Frank! It's in Flash!"
"Oh yeah, that, I thought it would be cool to have a portfolio section in Flash. It has smoother transitions."
"Frank don't you know the meaning of this?"
"My mother didn't breastfeed me?"
"Flash can't be seen on the iPhone or iPad, and is virtually invisible to Google spiders. Your portfolio is a big hole."
Frank just shrugged. "So what should I do Dr. Pressinger? Do we need to meet twice a week?"
"Frank you need to get your act together. Start updating your LinkedIn status, check the keyword density on your site, get on Orkut, use StumbleUpon, and you have to begin to use Digg for all your latest updates."
"Latest updates, you mean like what we talk about, um, like when I apologized to my mother for saying I never liked her cooking?"
"No, I mean a blog. You have to start keeping a blog, and updating it regularly. Only original content, updated on a regular basis will keep you relevant on Google. That's it. That's all that matters."
"Being relevant on Google?"
"Yes. That's all that matters now."

The alarm went off and Frank reached out from his bed and slammed it off. It was still dark outside, and clock said 5:15. Frank clicked on the lamp next to his bed, and rubbed his hand across his face. His hair was trimmed and short, and his face was smooth and shaven. He walked over to the canvas on the easel and took a moment to breathe in the painting on the canvas. It was still life of fruit across a table. The fruit were layed casually next to each other. The bright colors of the different fruits jumped off the canvas, even the subtle hues of the shadows were filled with pastel colors. Frank took a few steps into his kitchen and stated heating hot water in his kettle. As the water percolated, he sat down in front of his laptop. After checking his email, he opened

Twitter. He tweeted that he would be appearing at the Danum Gallery in Soho tonight - free wine and cheese. He opened another tab on his browser, and went into his Google Analytics account. The water in the kettle bubbled. He went into the Google Analytics dashboard and saw that his traffic and steadily grown in the past weeks, doubling from the previous month. His traffic sources were even more varied, and the searched-for keywords were broader and less specific to just his name or website address. A smile grew across his face. The boiling kettle started to whistle.

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