Marktplein DM: quality above quantity


At Friday October 19th and Saturday 20th I was host at Marktplein DM. This was the fifth time the event took place. It was my third time as a host. Earlier I already attended as a speaker. In total I visited Maastricht almost annually for direct marketing related events for about 17 years now! That makes me part of the ‘old chaps network’ that was causing a bit of a stir (later on this more).
For now please feel free to download the presentations of the speakers here.

iPhone arrived!

Earlier I blogged about the iPhone I ordered via eBay. The first seller didn’t deliver. But because of PayPal’s Buyer’s Protection I was credited for the amount spent. Luckily the offerings on iPhones on eBay is plenty. So, I ordered another one. This time from Florida. The phone arrived in 11 days (USPS advertises 5 days!) but probably Dutch customs kept the package a bit longer before handing it over to TNT Express. Anyhow: the thing arrived in good shape and that evening I spent two hours hacking the gadget in order to get it working with my T-Mobile SIM.
This was an anxious operation but all went fairly well. Now I’m really enjoying this übergadget. The screen especially is great. It is fun to read mail and watch websites. Zooming in on Google Maps is great also. There are some glitches however: text input is not that simple (compared to my HTC).
It’s also funny to see how many iPhones are already going round in The Netherlands. The next day mine was delivered a co-worker went out to buy one. And during my gig at the Marktplein DM, speakers Peter Dörr (former UPC) and Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten (known iPhone aficionado) where in Maastricht with their iPhone. Estimates are that 15% of iPhones sold are for hacking… The restrictions Apple put on the selling of iPhones is also a hint in that direction.

Mobilizing bloggers worldwide


Blog Action Day is an initiative in which bloggers all over the world are asked to blog on a specific day (October 15th) on just one issue/subject: the environment. I enlisted with DR | ADV already and now I’m part of a (growing) network of 9.203 blogs (and counting…). In total these blogs reach the stunning amount of 6,796,283 persons.

I really like this initiative. Because it shows the longtail-effect of blogging in such a clear way. Also because I’m very curious HOW all these bloggers are going to write about the subject. Will they integrate it in their blog’s editorial framework? Or will they – just on this day – ignore their format? I choose the first option. There is plenty of time to thing on a subject. But please be my guest and let me know how you would link the environment with Direct Response Advertising. Watch the video on Blog Action Day here.

Update: Oops… October 15th gone by and I didn’t even notice it. So much for this nice initiative. But I think I’ve got an item up my sleeve. And what the heck: this issue is too important to just stick it to one specific day! Don’t you agree?

Digital development in Kenya


Personalizing direct mailings is thé thing for many years. The more personal you can get, the better the results. New technology is in place to make it possible to create handwritten messages (or other representations) including a person’s name. But this initiative of is very low-tech. And charming nonetheless. How it works? Via the (Dutch) website of you can order a photograph of someone’s first name handwritten in the sand of Bamburi Beach at Mombasa (Kenya). This writing is done by Moses Onoo and his family. In total 8 families profit from this initiative by Dutchman Pim Bottenberg. During a visit he facilitated them with a camera and teached them how to photograph and use the PC in a nearby internetcafé. For 10 euro you can get this personalized piece. Now that is what you can call digital development!

source: NRC.Next – Olga van Ditzhuijzen

Photoblog completely redone


The last few days I was ill. Nothing serious, but a rather severe case of sinusitis. While laying in bed, I remade my photoblog SilentShutter. Instead of using MovableType as CMS, I switched to PixelPost. The latter is more focussed on publishing photos. Also the amount of comment-spam I received with MT was that bad that I switched off the option of commenting. But I started SilentShutter (also) in order to receive comment, so this was a bad situation… I tweaked an existing template (changed some things in the CSS-files) and loaded some old and newer photos. It is up and running now and I am happy with it. Some more work need to be done, but this will probably need to wait for another illness ;-)

Het Gesprek is starting


The new Dutch television (and online) broadcaster ‘Het Gesprek‘ (‘The Conversation’) is starting today! Last week we did our first gig that went very well. Tomorrow we are going live at 20.00 hour! Exiting. The format of the sender is to bring out 24×7 talk-television. And because of the length of the programs more in-depth interviews should be possible. The people behind Het Gesprek (HG) all earned their laureates in the genre: Ruud Hendriks, Frits Barend and Derk Sauer.
Ronnie Overgoor transferred his PitchTalk.TV to Het Gesprek. He asked me to join him weekly for the ‘news of the week before’. Then the conversations with two guests start. The first shoot was really fun to do: three slightly nervous presenters (yes! stage freight…) a nice crew, Ruud Hendriks stopping by and encouraging everybody, and two very interesting talks (Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten and Arjan Snijders). More to come!

photo from left to right: Ronnie Overgoor, me, Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten, Edwin Valent and Arjan Snijders. Credits: Jochem van Apeldoorn.