Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Bloggers as Internet Historians #iblog10 #phnet20

I had the opportunity to present my point of view on how to move forward with the use of the Internet as it turned 20 years old last March 29, 2014 at #phnet20 event. Purposefully focusing on how to use it to build online success. Thankful to TenMinutes.ph for the opportunity. Presented its original form in a JCI Manila learning session last March 25. My calibrated thoughts shared further at the 10th iBlog: The Philippine Blogging Summit #blog10.

As an Internet user, I learned that you need to be willing to stand, speak up for your beliefs, take action, and avoid the "entitlement" mindset.

You can use the Internet as a starting space to build a community and be of relevant service to others. Where your imagination and determination to get things done is your limit.

The Internet has empowered Filipinos by providing a neutral platform where they can realize their potential online.

BLOGGING WILL EVOLVE

In the recent DigitalFilipino Web Awards, I have seen more blogs penetrated the top 500 websites in the Philippines. Bloggers were able to wield influence and particularly attractive to entities who can't afford mainstream advertising. Also relevant in terms of discussing issues and in shaping mindset of their acquired audience.

Although there are also social media influencers, but the changing policies of the platforms popularly used only prove that is important to invest in one's online presence through a blog.

BLOGGERS AS INTERNET HISTORIANS #nethistoryph

When I published the Philippine Internet Review 10 years ago, I was purposeful in getting two writers to focus on writing the timeline as I don't want my being subjective to get in the way with the report.

I remember there was a debate on two persons - one referred to as the "father" while the other is a "grandfather". Then I said, if you are the grandfather, then you are the father. Debate ensues through the years on that topic - even until today. It is subjective indeed.

Part of it is also vindictive. I know the feeling when the hard work you have done was not being recognized by "historians". But in reality, it is unlikely for a person to be on top of everything that is happening.

But moving forward with Philippine Internet history, bloggers have an important role to play in documenting developments and serve as reference later on. More so for bloggers based in the provinces as how the Internet has evolved was hardly known. Although companies, entrepreneurs, social media users can also do this task if they will actively contribute information to these efforts and even write them.

I hope that our country's Internet history and developments in the years to come will be written by bloggers both from a point of view of being knowledgeable on what happened and as a consumer witnessing events as they unfold. Perhaps a good start will be allotting a blog post a month specifically for a documenting Philippine Internet history on your space using the hashtag #nethistoryph


Start-ups will propel e-commerce adoption in the Philippines

The future of e-commerce in the Philippines will be shaped by start-ups. This is the reason why we need more bloggers writing start-up developments. More than just earning from blogging on your own blog, bloggers should also consider being part of a start-up and become technopreneurs.

Be on top of the mobile game

Filipino Internet users are one of the most active users of mobile devices in terms of posting event coverages, photo uploads, video taking, blogging, application testing, among others. Bloggers should actively try new apps, blog about their mobile experiences, and give suggestions on how can it be further improve - from app usage to Internet surfing experience.

Customer relationship is the name of the game

With more entities and entrepreneurs marketing online, it will be quite expensive to keep up in terms of marketing cost. Focus is needed on sustaining and maintaining that tight relationship with the customer. It is easier said than done. But those who will be able to do it well are the ones who will keep on growing without necessarily being noisy online.

Work from home

With transportation, weather, and infrastructure issues we are confronting in metro areas, it is likely that more entrepreneurs and businesses will work with freelancers - doing their work from home. But with more individuals getting into this space, the market becomes competitive too. Focusing on continuously building your skill while providing customer satisfaction will help a great deal in having regular projects.

Government regulation

Filipino Internet users will need to join groups that can allow them to vent their concern on issues such as fair taxation, better Internet connectivity, monitor power rate hikes, improving transportation infrastructure, general elections, lobbying for freedom of information,  and proper implementation of the Cybercrime Law and Data Privacy Act.

E-Learning and Membership sites

I personally believe that the next 10 years of the Internet will lead to more e-learning programs be launched and more of it from various educational institutions. More companies and government offices will also embrace it for internal and external training.

Communities will thrive

The ones that will make a difference are those whose purpose is bigger than themselves. Those who have significant impact to their location, industry, or target market segment.

The most "shareable" wins

Marketing of products and services should be balanced with useful content that has long term value. It should be relevant enough to encourage people to share, write, search, and talk about it.

Diversity wins

If you are working alone, start building a team. Get more stuff done. No matter how good you are, a great team will always perform better than you.

If you are part of a team, work on building your skills, maturity, strength, endurance, speed to contribute significantly to your team. Be an asset rather than a liability.

As long as you have one goal and one dream, celebrate and embrace your differences. Diversity wins!



Thursday, March 13, 2014

Embracing your Uniqueness

Nike Running badge given last
Chinese New Year
For the past two weeks, I find myself in a situation sharing my point of view about the Cybercrime Law and online taxation. The cybercrime topic was tough as I hardly knew or heard of a private sector publicly that shares the same point of view I have. By focusing on being informative and factual has allowed me to glide through this topic without getting into any heated debate from those who look at the said policy otherwise.

In the case of online taxation, it seems very few are open in sharing their thoughts on the topic for fear of being harassed by the Bureau of Internal Revenue and have been warned repetitively about the risk I am taking. 

But I always believe in the element of good faith. That all of us - no matter how different our opinions are - act in good faith. 

Our realities are shaped by experiences and what we are exposed to. We just need to accept the fact that we can always learn something new from another person and realize sometimes - that some of what we know all along was right - may also be wrong.

Pursuing such type of humility while mustering courage to take ownership on insights requires balance. But if you learn to embrace early on what makes you different, unique, and interesting for people to listen - the more you can use it to standout and in building relationship with others.

Speaking up on issues is equally important as ignoring or playing on the safe side of things does not resonate well in real life.

Be memorable

I have been speaking in events since 1995 and doing such to pursue my e-commerce advocacy. Through the years, I have met many speakers and most of them I could hardly recall what and how they present.

I noticed, the most memorable speakers are those who are able to give life-changing insights. Those that puts you in a moment of epiphany. 

Although there are those who made us laugh and feel good for the moment. But those that stayed on are the most genuine, real, and was able to influence our ideas - one way or another. 

Building the Connection

Follow-through is equally important. Few will invite you to connect with them, build relationship gradually, and make them part of your journey. Those who sees you as a hero in the making rather than a person where one can profit from in the future.

Be Real

To build that connection requires being real about who you are. Bloggers have used their blog and social media to share their personal side. There is that temptation to over-project or make yourself larger than life. But then again, I feel it is better to be real and true to who you are.

Use your uniqueness

Who you are is that unique you. It is not perfect. Not everyone will like it. But if you use it to serve or delight others consistently, I am certain that those who were able to resonate and benefit from you will remember, prefer, and recommend you to others.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Winner: #CBSME Pitching Contest

Many thanks to the following who joined our #CBSME Pitching Contest.

1. Christian Melanie Lee
2. Ariel Licas
3. Hana Kirstie SM Abello
4. Maria Cristine Pre
5. Nehemiah Lopez
6. Aya John Miller T. Perez
7. Monnel Espiritu
8. Beth Vargas
9. Peter James Escobar
10. Herald C. Bebis
11. Martney Acha

All non-winners will get a 15% discount in the Certified Blog and Social Media Entrepreneur Program. They are also entitled to attend one (1) face-to-face session on any topic of their choice at this coming Digital Marketing Entrepreneur Program (not transferable).


According our #CBSME graduates and judges (Ted Vicente, Abby Luz, and Vanj Padilla) whom we requested to review the above entries, the chosen #CBSME scholar is Herald C. Bebis.

Congratulations Herald!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Join the #CBSME Pitching Contest

The Certified Blog and Social Media Entrepreneur Program will have its next batch start this January 25, 2014. In the spirit of giving, we decided to give one scholarship slot to a person who will win this pitching competition. Here are the details:

Objective: 

To give the winner with a great idea a scholarship slot in the Certified Blog and Social Media Entrepreneur Program.


Who can join:

1. Anyone in the Philippines can join.
2. Participant must be 18 years old and above.


Mechanics:

1. Create a presentation, no more than 20 slides, as your entry for this contest.
2. The presentation should have the following covered: (not necessarily according to this order)

  • Information about you
  • What is your passion? (or what are you passionate about?)
  • What is your project idea? (can be for yourself, for someone else such as person / product / company, or advocacy) 
  • How can the #CBSME program help you?
  • Why do you want to become a Certified Blog and Social Media Entrepreneur?
3. Upload your presentation on Slideshare. Participant can also create a blog post and / or video to supplement the entry.
5. Three (3) judges will review all entries. They are #CBSME graduates Abby Luz, Ted Vicente, and Vanj Padilla.

Judging will be based on the following:
  • Project idea - 25%
  • Impact potential - 25%
  • Clarity of passion and purpose - 25%
  • Creativity - 25%


Winner announcement

The winner will be announced on January 12, 2014. Non-winners will be entitled to 15% discount should they decide to continue pursuing the #CBSME program.