Great insights in this piece from Pete.  I feel so far away from these folks, but at the same time it seems like only yesterday….

I can definitely relate to that strange cat John in HBO’s new series “John From Cincinnati” when he mutters, “There are some things I know, and some things I don’t.”

This is reinforced every summer when an intern (usually from Cincinnati) arrives at my desk. I get that anxious, insecure feeling that I’m not moving fast enough, not digesting enough technology, and beginning to drift toward Planet Irrelevance.

Chandler From Cincinnati…and His Insights

Here’s what the little punk has taught me so far:

  • Google rocks and scares at the same time. Like so many others, Chandler seems tortured over Google. “Google keeps coming out with extremely useful tools but is walking a very fine line between evolutionary corporation and Big Brother,” he says.
  • Facebook trumps MySpace. As far as Chandler’s concerned, “the end is near” for MySpace. Not sure I entirely agree, but here’s his rationale: “The cluttered, spam-filled, and teenager-controlled world of MySpace has been unable to keep up with the nonexclusive version of Facebook, which also has a cleaner interface and controlled ads (no pop-ups!), is organized around real-world communities, and most recently has shown an active ability to continue evolving with its launch of an integrated third-party development platform.” As he sees it, Facebook has successfully built on MySpace’s early foundations to take social networking to the next credible level.
  • Friends are social currency. Friends, Chandler insists, are your social currency and the key to your reputation.
  • Reputation is earned, never assumed. True online street cred must be earned, says Chandler. “If it happened yesterday and you post it, you’re a little behind the curve. If it happened a week ago and you post it, you’ll lose your readers and be run off the Internet,” he says.
  • Simple packaging really matters. College kids seek order, not clutter. “Where do folks find time to do all this stuff?” Web 2.0, at its core, is an organizing principle.
  • Your life is your résumé. In the Internet dominated world, Chandler insists your résumé’s always in play, even when you don’t know it. 
  • A fine conversational bloom must be groomed. “Always keep the conversation well-managed and fluid,” says Chandler, “and don’t kill the bloom.”

Ten Great Marketing Insights From My Summer Intern