Thursday, December 4, 2014

3 Reasons Why You Should Give Perfumes As Gifts

1. The recipient will remember you every time he/she uses the perfume. Did you ever wonder why certain smells evoke some emotions and bring back old memories to us? Well, there’s a science behind it. A smell travels through the olfactory bulb which is responsible for processing smells. And the olfactory bulb is part of the limbic system, the emotional center of the brain. This is why some smells bring back old memories as well as emotions. Consider this. The moment the person opens the gift and discovers that it is a perfume, there is a fat chance that he/she will try it right away. And guess what’s the last thing on his/her mind before he/she opens it? You. So if you want to make a mark on somebody, consider giving him/her a perfume.

2. Filipinos (among other people in the world) are crazy about perfumes. This one needs no rocket science to confirm. The reason why the perfume business in the Philippines (e.g. Prescripto, Aficionado and the like) is such an awesome industry is because Filipinos like feeling good and smelling good. We are among the races who practically take a bath every day. For us, smelling good is a very basic thing.

3. Perfumes are non-expensive, easy to carry and are considered as luxury items. There are expensive perfumes and there are affordable perfumes. Aside from this, perfumes are very easy to carry so it’s less hassle for you and the one you want to give the perfume too. Also, perfumes are considered as luxury items. Just make sure to pick the good ones.

Hey guys! I’m selling perfumes called Grances. It’s available at 12ml, 30 ml and 60ml. We have gift packs too composed of (a) 2 bottles of 60ml; and (b) 2 bottles of 30ml variants of your choice. You can choose from Green Apple (bestseller), White Lace (bestseller), Rain Kiss Leaf, Dew Happiness, Santorini Blue (Men) and Navy Coast (Men). For orders, please send me, Mark Delgado, a message at 0998-367-0545 or at 0915-339-4455.

Here is the price list:

  • 12ml - P199
  • 30ml - P299
  • 60ml - P399
  • 2 bottles of 30 ml with basket and ribbon - P599
  • 2 bottles of 60ml with basket and ribbon - P799
I have testers. Let's meet up! Just contact me using the numbers above.

Friday, November 7, 2014

3 Reasons To Visit RenewHub Spa in Manila

There is not much clutter inside the spa. It's minimalist.
That's why I like it so much.
1. Away from the action.

I admit it. If you're not from Sta. Mesa, it may be hard for you to find RenewHub Spa. Well not that hard. Because honestly it's just near LRT 2 Pureza Station and then you will have to ride a pedicab to bring you down to Building 28 A-11 GSIS Metrohomes along Anonas Street. It's just that not all pedicab drivers are aware of the whereabouts of the spa. But believe me, it's all worth it when you find it. If you're the type of person who likes nesting in places that are hard to find and away from the hustle and bustle of the city, this spa is the perfect spot for you.

2. Quality service.

This is not a paid post. I am doing this because RenewHub delivers everytime I go there. Everything that they offer is awesome and awesomely priced. I usually go for my pedicure here with the best pedicurist in town, Ate Juliet. She is very detailed and makes sure that my nails are clean before she declares "It's done." She had never let me down. No other pedicurist had done it better than her.

3. Affordable.

Their 1-hour massage is at P299. They also have body scrubs and paraffin treatments. The owner is actually a dermatologist and she has a skin clinic beside the spa. You really just have to go and check out this place.

They are closed every Monday. They open at 2pm and closes at 12mn. Give them a ring at 949-1137 or 0925-473639.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

3 Reasons To Shop At Island Rose

Roses for your Ms. World? No problem. Island Rose is the
official flower sponsor during the Ms. World Philippines
2014 pageant.
1. Quality.

The very website of Island Rose is about quality. (Check it out at It's one of the most navigable e-commerce websites I have ever visited -- no kidding here. It's fast and simple. Less frills. Less clutter. It's ideal for people who know exactly what they want and want it quick -- without sacrificing the quality. Since the first touchpoint of most customers is through online, you can already say a lot how the people behind this business do it. And true enough, as I click through the pages of the website, one thing is impressed on my mind -- Island Rose is about quality. You can say that you can get roses and other gifts anywhere else but there is no denying that it is Island Rose that had perfected the art and science of "delivering fresh roses to the ones you love". And you know too well that when giving to the ones you love, quality is of utmost importance. I believe this is what Island Rose is about.

2. Great business idea.
The awesome website of Island Rose.

It was last year when I first heard about Island Rose in a webinar about best practices in e-commerce in the Philippines. When I first heard about it, I knew that it was a great business idea. First, it's unique in its own niche. Before and after I heard about Island Rose, I've never heard of any other business that delivers fresh roses to anyone anywhere which can also be ordered online. There can similar businesses to Island Rose but they haven't reached me yet. Second, it's focused. By its name, you will know already what it's all about -- roses. By focusing on the most popular flower in the market, it has become an excellent business in its own respect. Where there is focus, there is excellence. And third, it's revolutionary. In its website, it was said that in the year 2000 the business sparked a revolution in the Philippine flower industry and e-commerce retailing. This means when I was in Grade 6 and long before Lazada and Zalora, Island Rose is already doing e-commerce. Being a digital marketing consultant myself, this blows my mind incredibly.

3. Love.

A screenshot of their Deals page. My favorite items are
all here especially "Forever" which is found at the
upper right hand corner.
If there is yet another great reason why you should get flowers for your sweetheart from Island Rose, I believe that it is love. You can be a Filipino professional who is working abroad and is looking for a way to send roses to your sweetie-pie here in the Philippines. Or you can just be here looking for a way to make your honey-bunch feel extra special by having her favorite flowers delivered at her office. I believe Island Rose is the one for you.

Check out their website at My favorite item so far is "Forever" which can be found at their Deals page.

Friday, September 19, 2014

7 Personality Types Single Men (Who Are Looking) Should Avoid Becoming

This list is inspired by Pastor Joseph Bonifacio’s talk during the recently concluded Act Like A Man Summit held last September 13, 2014 at Victory Greenhills.

1. Mr. Hindi Ko Na Kaya

Some men confess their feelings to women they like just because they “can’t contain it anymore”. Men, if there’s one important virtue that we must cultivate within ourselves, we know too well that it is self-control. If you’re planning to confess your feelings to the woman you like just because of your uncontrolled emotions, we have a problem. What you should do (and you should know this by now very well) is, first, tell your plans to God. Pray and make sure that this is an act of faith and not just any impulsive reaction to your emotions. Ask God for guidance. The confession must be Spirit-led. After praying, ask for prayer and guidance from your Victory Group leader or from someone who you trust can give you godly counsel. Lastly, have a clear action plan in your mind. What if she says “yes” that you can already pursue her? What if she says “no”? Whatever the outcome is, thank God. But let your confession to the woman you like be not just a mere confession. Have a clear action plan in your mind and let God bless it.

2. Mr. Pa-Bestfriend

Some men intentionally choose the “bestfriend route” just to “test the waters”. While befriending someone you like is permissible for a certain period of time, overly doing this eliminates the opportunity to “walk above the waters”. Men should be clear with their motives and must actively pursue the woman that they like. Tama na ang pa-bestfriend!

And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

Hebrews 11:6

3. Mr. Oversharing

Some men tend to overshare things to the women they like and are friends with as part of their “testing the waters” tactics. They tend to make someone they like prematurely “involved” in their personal lives just to get the “feel” of it. If you have a tendency to do this, beware. You are not doing a great job guarding your heart and also the heart of the woman who had captured yours.

4. Mr. Serial Dater

The rule of thumb is simple. Don’t date her if you don’t have any plans of pursuing her for marriage. Sounds too much? I say, do not be conformed to the pattern of this world (Check out Romans 12:2). While most people in our generation will say that dating is normal and that there’s no need to bother becoming different, I say Joshua Harris did a great job in writing his book entitled, “I Kissed Dating Goodbye”. In his book, he pointed out the importance of keeping away from sin at all cost and also the value of purity. Jumping from one date to another often leads to compromise that it’s not anymore a wonder why pre-marital sex had become a norm in our generation. Even when most people do it and even when it hurts to wait, do not ask her out for a date yet if you don’t have any plans yet of pursuing her for marriage.

5. Mr. Feeling Heartthrob

Some men had become too "handsome" that they had passively forgone the opportunity to pursue someone they really like. Women had become too easy to get for them. Most of the time, relationships that started where men did not exert efforts to pursue the woman do not last long. In his book entitled “Wild At Heart”, John Eldredge said that inside a man’s heart are three important things: a battle to fight, a beauty to rescue and an adventure to live. Zoom in on “a beauty to rescue”. The idea is simple. The woman that a man worked hard to pursue is a woman to be treasured.

6. Mr. The-Lord-Told-Me

This is an appeal for both men and women. Please. Be careful in using the phrase “The Lord told me…” In the case of a man pursuing someone he likes, using this phrase is a red flag. You can’t ask someone out for a date with you using this phrase as a compelling reason. Be guided.

7. Mr. The Buzz ng Bayan

When you have plans of pursuing someone, do not tell it to everyone. The most that you can do is to ask for prayer and guidance from your Victory Group leader or from someone who you trust can give you godly counsel. Also, stop making “parinig” over social media. Be a real man and tell it straight to her in faith during the right time!

“Do not arouse or awaken love until it so desires.”

Song of Solomon 8:4

Don't have a Victory Group yet? Join us every Saturday, 6PM, at Robinson's Galleria. You may contact me via 0998-367-0545 or 0915-339-4455.

*This post is good for sharing.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

4 Things I Learned About Manhood from Pastor Gilbert Foliente (Act Like A Man Summit 2014)

It was a great honor to be listening again to Pastor Gilbert Foliente during the Act Like A Man Summit held last September 13, 2014 at Victory Greenhills. I won’t forget that he actually is the first pastor I have ever listened to in Victory U-Belt when I was still a college student in UST - still a non-believer during that time. Years had passed and I am a Christian now, he still has the same effect on me. He is still the same witty and funny preacher who is full of wisdom of the Lord. I honor you, Pastor Gilbert!

Below are the 4 things I learned about manhood from Pastor Gilbert during the summit.

Please feel free to share this to all the men in your life.

1. Real men are secure with the Lord.

Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness, so that they may rule over the fish in the sea and the birds in the sky, over the livestock and all the wild animals, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.” So God created mankind in his own image, in the image of God he created them; male and female he created them.

Genesis 1:26-27

Pastor Gilbert reiterated to us the importance of knowing that we are created in the image and likeness of God. He said that this is one of the greatest gifts God has given us – to be created in His own image and likeness.

Perhaps this is also why we, including our bodies, are considered sacred. To add, seeking to destroy someone is considered as a grave sin. Killing someone is tantamount to destroying a creation to whom the very image and likeness of God had been endowed.

Pastor Gilbert told us that our security must come from the Lord. Fundamentally speaking, our self-image must be rooted with the fact that we are created in God’s image and likeness – and not with any superficial and temporal things we can find in this world.

2. Real men provide.

“The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.”

Genesis 2:15

I appreciated it when Pastor Gilbert specifically pointed out that work is not a result of the fall. Even before the fall, God already appointed Adam to become the keeper of the Garden of Eden. We are made for work. Thus, work must not be despised nor be considered as a punishment. It is a gift, a special appointment, from the Lord. Other creations can’t do it – only us.

Years ago, I was able to read a popular book called “Wild At Heart” by John Eldredge. He said that while Eve was created inside the Garden of Eden, Adam was created outside it. For him, this spells a lot of difference. Man is wired to go outside the house, haunt and come back with food for the family. The woman, on the other hand, is intended to be inside the house and become its keeper. Though modern times had tweaked this a bit, I believe we are all still wired in this pattern. This observation by Eldredge, I believe, supports the claim of man being the worker, hunter and provider for the family. With the woman, he forms a wonderful teamwork.

3. Real men protect.

So Boaz said to Ruth, “My daughter, listen to me. Don’t go and glean in another field and don’t go away from here. Stay here with the women who work for me. 9 Watch the field where the men are harvesting, and follow along after the women. I have told the men not to lay a hand on you. And whenever you are thirsty, go and get a drink from the water jars the men have filled.”

Ruth 2:8-9

Don't be confused. Boaz is not Ruth's father. Because of this passage, I was able to get a sneak peek of the love story of Boaz and Ruth. It is one of the greatest love stories in the Bible. Boaz is the man! In this passage, he gave specific instructions to Ruth for her safety.

There’s also a passage in the Bible that talks about a time when Boaz found Ruth sleeping near his bed. But Boaz, being a real gentleman and a man of God, did not take advantage of Ruth. He was after her purity. Real men are protectors – not defilers of women. Aside from this, real men are protectors of his whole family.

4. Real mean lead.

But the Lord God called to the man, “Where are you?”

Genesis 3:9

This is a short but a truly insightful passage. I believe that God knows who ate the forbidden first, being the omniscient God that He is, but why did he ask the man first about it?

Is it because Adam is His favorite and that He cared less for Eve? Nah. I believe it’s got to be more than that.

Adam is the one appointed to take care of everything in the Garden of Eden. I believe that means including Eve. Being God’s appointed, it is but just right to ask him first about their whereabouts and what the two of them had done – regardless of who ate the forbidden fruit first. It’s interesting how Adam responded to God’s interrogation afterwards. Here’s Genesis 3:9-12. (Bold, italics and underline mine) Look closely.

He answered, “I heard you in the garden, and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.” And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” The man said, “The woman you put here with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate it.”

God’s query is a simple question answerable by a yes or a no. “Have you eaten from the tree?” Interestingly, the man answered with a statement, which I believe now, even in the present time, which is trillions of years (or more) after the creation, can be described as a statement that is somewhat defensive and passing the blame on others – first on the woman and second on God.

When Adam was expected to take responsibility, he pointed his fingers to Eve and then to God.


Real men are secure with Lord. Real men provide. Real men protect. Real men lead. Thank you very much Pastor Gilbert Foliente for the lessons that you shared to us. Thank you too to Pastor Dennis Sy and his team who are behind the Act Like A Man Summit 2014!


Saturday, August 9, 2014

7 Finger Lickin' Good Things That Happened To Me Today At KFC

I think I am starting to really like KFC that I chose it over Tater's Churkey Burger earlier. Here are the things that happened to me today.

1. Everything I like for only P150.

So I was really hungry earlier. Getting that Zinger Fully Loaded Meal for only P150 wasn't a hard decision to make. In that meal, I had the chicken meal (my excuse for getting the unlimited gravy), macaroni salad (my replacement for coleslaw), Zinger and iced tea. Great bargain!

2. The hint of wasabi in mayo inside my Zinger. 

You can just imagine my hunger earlier. After eating the chicken meal, I munched on my Zinger. It's a great burger. I compare it to Curiosity Burger that we used to eat in Fudan University in Shanghai when I was still studying there. I really like that hint of wasabi in the mayo that they placed inside that sandwich.

3. Zinger's patty is made of 100% whole chicken meat. 

Knowing that there's a claim of having no meat extenders inside my burger appeals to my mind, heart and stomach a lot.

4. Okay taste of the unlimited gravy. 

I like gravy a lot. But, sometimes, KFC's gravy tastes burnt. The other branches should look into this one. But the one in Galleria (where I ate earlier) tastes okay. Not perfect, but okay.

5. The photo of Crispy Cheese Chicken that always make me smile. 

I am not exactly a fan of that meal (the one with Clover Chips) but I am fan of KFC's creativity and innovation. They brought Double Down and now this one. Obviously, the management team is doing their job. And through this blog, I wanna tell them that they are doing it really well. Among all the fastfood chains in the Philippines, I will give them the award for creativity and innovation.

6. The iced tea that confused my taste buds which I like. 

At first, I thought there's a hint of tamarind and peach in KFC's iced tea. But after a few minutes, I thought KFC only used Darjeeling Tea and then sweetened it. I don't know what happened to me earlier but I surely liked that iced tea. 

7. The brilliant Order and Pick Up Counters. 

I am speaking now to the customers like me. The reason why some fastfood chains get orders from people in the middle of the queues is because they simply don't want you to leave the queues. We leave the queues because we want our food fast. Fastfood, right? We don't wanna line up for our food.

KFC in Robinson's Galleria brilliantly solved this by separating the Order Counter from the Pick Up Counter. This means that customers can speedily order and make payments at the Order Counter without waiting for the orders. This also means that the rest of the people in the queue don't have to wait until the orders of the one in front are assembled and brought to the table. I think this is brilliant. Slow clap here.

Disclaimer: I wasn't paid by KFC to do this blog. But if they decide to give me a free Zinger Fully Loaded Meal, I won't decline it.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

8 Things You Need To Consider Before Getting Your Insurance Policy

1. Know that this policy is not only for you but also for the people you love.

One of the primary goals of an insurance policy is to protect the income of the insured. The income of a regular employee usually depletes or totally stops in times of death, disability or disease. When the income of a regular employee depletes or totally stops, the lives of the people around him are affected too. This is what insurance is for. It seeks to assist you and your family in times of great need.

2. We can't choose when should death, disease and disability strike us. But we can choose to be prepared when they come. 

We cannot choose when to die, get sick or become disabled. These things happen even to the healthiest people we know. Instead of ignoring this reality, why don't we choose to find ways to minimize their effects by being financially prepared and protected? Insurance policies have guaranteed ways to provide for you when these events come.

3. If you get critically sick or disabled, the same policy can never be offered to you. Worse, you may never be able to get any insurance policy at all.

Some clients delay getting insurance policies with the thought that they can get it anytime they want. But this is not true. When you get critically sick or disabled, it will be more difficult for you to get a policy. Worse, you may never be able to get one at all for the rest of your life.

4. If you get the policy at a much later time, the higher fees you'll need to pay. Invest while you are still young.

Before investing on anything else, invest on protection first.

The younger you are, the lower the cost of premium that you'll need to pay. This is because there is less risk for younger people. The best time get an insurance policy is now.

5. Invest on protection first before you invest on properties.

Have you heard about the Pyramid of Investment? Any financial planner will tell you that before you invest on properties, you must invest on protection first. Protection comes in the form of insurance policies.

6. If you dream of sending your children (or godchildren, nephews or nieces) to big colleges and universities, know that a few years from now the tuition fees for 4-year courses will start to reach millions of pesos. You know you can't just settle for less for your children.

Education is said to be the greatest inheritance that parents can pass on to their children. In the Philippines, parents will do anything just to send their children to the best schools. The best time to prepare for that time is while you are still single. You don't have to wait until your married life to invest for your children's education.

To get a more detailed projection of the tuition fees of various colleges and universities in the Philippines, please contact me via 0917-838-7545.

7. Remind yourself that retirement age in the Philippines is 60 years old. While it is a blessing to live beyond this age, it also requires financial preparation. 

We all want to live long. But while living long is considered as a blessing, this also entails financial obligation. With old age comes our inability to work and provide for ourselves. Most of us will become reliant on our children (or nephews or nieces) when that time comes. Is there a way to change this pattern? By preparing early for your retirement, you can have the assurance that you can live long with grace.

8. If you are saving money for your big dreams (e.g. house, car, travel and etc.), let it be known that hoarding your money can only get you so far. Investing your money for a much greater return is the better way to go.

People save for their big dreams. This is why they need to save for a very long time. What if there is a way for you to grow your money at a much shorter time? Insurance policies with investment components can help you do just that.

I am a licensed Financial Consultant who has the mission of protecting the income of the Filipino family. Let me know how can I be of help to you. Contact me via 0998-367-0545.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

7 Things I Like About the New Mobile Game Epic Paint Adventure

Today, March 20, 2014, Kuyi Mobile launched their new mobile game called Epic Paint Adventure. Honestly, I am not really much of a gamer and there are only a few games that I really like, the reason for which is because I only appreciate the “ideation” of the games. The games on my list include the phenomenal Flappy Bird, Plants vs. Zombies and Bejeweled. There is something common among these three games and I believe that it is what made them popular.

Today, I am writing about yet another genius work. Allow me to enumerate the 7 things I like about the new mobile game Epic Paint Adventure.

1. Colorful design. Epic Paint Adventure is about painting. The gamer’s task is to help painters get colors so that they can complete their paintings. There is no doing away with colors here and this is one of the things that I like about this new work by Kuyi Mobile. It was impressive the way they visually designed the whole game.

2. Cute chibi characters. I like the cute chibi characters that they created for the game. By the look of it, you will know that Kuyi Mobile really worked hard in designing each and every one of them. The characters are famous painters. There is even one wearing the Philippine National Costume for men, Barong Tagalog, and I am yet to find out who he is. Juan Luna, perhaps? The one who created Spoliarium? Growing up, my favorite games are Mario Brothers (I mean, during my age, who doesn’t?) and Pocket Fighter by Nintendo. These games all used cute chibi characters so when I saw Epic Paint Adventure used chibis too, it was a plus point.

3. Music. Music is important that I did not skip it in this review. I just know that Kuyi Mobile really meticulously chose the right tune for the game and they did not just settle for mediocre sounds just to finish it. Thumbs up to the developers!

4. Challenging task. Okay, the task is really simple. All you have to do is to gather colors for the painters and to do that you have to “assemble” the colors in a playing board that has some obstacles. It might sound simple but it wasn’t that easy, that as of writing I am still stuck at Level 3! And yes, I won’t explain everything here. You really have to try it! It is really fun!

Friday, March 14, 2014

CIM Technologies at WORLDBEX 2014

CIM Technologies participated in WORLDBEX or The Philippine World Building and Construction
(L-R) Yours truly with CIM Technologies officers,
Ms. Leizel Ubalde (Marketing Manager) and
Mr. Mike Munoz (Bus. Dev. Officer)
Exposition last March 12-16, 2014 at the World Trade Center in Manila. WORLDBEX is dubbed as Asia’s most attended construction exposition with a visitor profile of more than 150,000 per year. The event is also known for putting together over 500 exhIbiting companies ranging from building materials equipment services, construction design and development.

CIM Technologies Inc. is in partnership with the world-leading IT companies namely: Autodesk, Siemens, Microsoft, Oracle, 3D Systems, HP and Apple. With its commitment to share the knowledge of technology, CIM conducts a series of events nationwide like campus tours, workshops, seminars and tradeshows to showcase the integrated solutions for design and innovation catered to the architecture, engineering, construction and manufacturing industries.

Top 3 Important Discoveries During the CIM Technologies Bloggers Day

Last February 21, 2014 at AIM Conference Center, I was very privileged to become part of the CIM Technologies Bloggers Day. It was organized by CIM Technologies, the country’s pioneer in providing technology solutions for design and innovation. It was also the company that brought to the country the products of 3D Systems Corporation, the market leader in the 3D Printing Industry. Below are my top 3 important discoveries during the event.
A product of 3D Printing exhibited during the event

1. 3D Printing is going to take the country by storm soon.
3D Printing is abuzz nowadays but still, not too many suppliers of such equipment are present in the country. But in the other countries, it was a booming industry. In fact, I got so curious about 3D Printing when I saw a section in my favorite website template portal that is dedicated to it. The portal offers templates for 3D Printing too. What is 3D Printing?

3D Printing, also known as Additive Manufacturing, is the production of 3-dimensional solid objects directly from a digital plan, where the material is printed layer by layer in variations until it gets form. Materials such as PLA plastics, clays, waxes and wood-based filament nylons are being used in 3D Printing.

I believe that it will take the country by storm soon. In other countries, it was already being used in industries such as aerospace, architecture, toys, fashion, arts, medical, education, automotive, electrical and consumer products.

2. 3D Printing can now be brought home.
3D Printing ongoing. They are printing a toy robot
made of white plastic.

When I heard about 3D Printing, I thought of big machines that are only seen in big companies. I was wrong. Actually, 3D Printing can now be brought home. Thanks to the innovative ideas of 3D Systems Corporation. Architecture and design students may now create their own mock-ups at their comforts of their own homes or classrooms. Regular hobbyists may now be able to create their own toys using their very own designs. Even dads may now be able to manufacture parts of appliances at home that can’t easily be found anywhere.

3D Systems' personal 3D printer brands are named Cube and CubeX. Cube is the one marketed for home use while CubeX is targeted for professionals and educators.

3. We are approaching the age of mass customization.
From mass production, we are now approaching the age of mass customization. As a marketer, I feel the need to become abreast in what’s happening now in the market. I sincerely believe that this phenomenon called “age of mass customization” is already taking place. I saw it the way companies Starbucks, Burger King, Globe Telecom and others customize their products and services for their customers. Though they do not manufacture for only one customer at a time, their products and services may be customized in order to fit the preferences of individuals. I believe 3D Printing is going to be at the forefront of this phenomenon.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

40 Day Project

40 day project
(Feel free to use this Facebook Photo for your own
Days before I lost my 3-month old Samsung Mega, the most reliable object that I have on Earth next to my laptop, I discovered about the #100happydays. I have seen this hashtag being used by my friends on Facebook and Instagram. I got curious so I Googled it. Apparently, it was a campaign to post on social media photos of anything that made the participants happy for 100 straight days. The campaign resulted to many good things as shared by the participants who joined. Some of the benefits include being in a better mood every day, starting receiving more compliments from other people, becoming more optimistic and even falling in love.

I thought it was great. Actually, two things popped into my head, when I saw it. First is The Happiness Project book by Gretchen Book, which I wasn’t able to finish reading. And second, the movie Julie & Julia. The movie is about the young New Yorker Julie Powell, played by Amy Adams, who aspired to cook for 365 days the 524 recipes of Julia Child, played by the awesome Meryl Streep. Julie documented her progress in her blog, which became popular.

These things amazed me. There was something in documenting someone’s progress in a specific measure of time that made me drawn to these materials. As a blogger, I have dreamed of starting a project similar to what Julie had – involves blogging and is time-bound. This is actually one of my motivations in buying The Happiness Project.

But who got time to read a book?

Monday, January 20, 2014

Of Death and Blogs

Coy posted this on his Wall last November 12, 2013.
I was encouraged to know that he was reading the Word
a few weeks before his passing.
I never really had so much close encounters with Coy Caballes when I was still in Globe. In fact, I only remember having a short conversation with him during the launching of iPhone 5 in Glorietta. But when I heard about his passing, a wave of mixed shock and sorrow hit me for a moment. I realized, knowing a person only for a short while doesn’t really matter in the face of death. Knowing that you have met the person and was able to talk to him while he was still alive, and then suddenly he was declared lifeless, is actually both saddening and paralyzing.

When I heard about Coy’s passing, I immediately buzzed the people who knew him to tell them about the news. Our reactions are the same. Sad and shocked. Death brings both, I realized. Truly, it was like a thief in the night. You won’t know when it will come.

Death, no matter how certain, is something that not too many people will talk about nor prepare for. It was so sad just thinking about it. But I also believe that thinking about death, as much as life, is brave and wise. Again, death is certain. Knowing that it can strike you anytime, there’s no point not reflecting about it.

Coy’s sudden death brought about too many realizations to me. Through his passing, I was able to think more about death and was also, to my surprise, did not feel uneasy about it anymore, unlike before. I am very thankful that I was able to meet the Savior around 2 years ago and after that, death wasn’t a scary topic anymore. In fact, that day, I decided to look at it closer and observe what will happen while it’s in the air.

There are 3 things that I’d like to write about in this blog post. These are the things that I have observed from the day of Coy’s passing until now.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

7 Things the Bible, LOTR and other Books Taught Me About Life, Friendship and Adventure

I woke up tonight, around 6:00pm, seeing visions of some scenes in the Lord of the Rings movies. The visions went along with mixed feelings of deep sorrow for some people who are special to me but I’ve lost along the way, and also a deep feeling of gratitude towards God for the gift of life that is full of adventure. Afterwards, I found myself writing a prayer enumerating the reasons why I am so thankful for this life. My first few words are “mountains to climb” and “seas to cross”. The next second, I was brought to thinking about the book entitled “Wild at Heart” written by John Eldredge, which I read around 3 year ago. In that book, he said that in every man’s heart is a battle to fight, a beauty to rescue and an adventure to live.

The Bible, Tolkien’s works, the movie adaptations of them, Eldredge’s book and Coelho’s The Alchemist are my inspirations in writing this blog post. I really believe that life is a great adventure and I am more than thankful that the God that we have is a God who gave us the freedom to write the chapter of our lives. With His guidance, I hope that we’ll be able to write a great story out of it.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

5 Important Lessons in Subtle Marketing and Video Ads

Samsung S4 Companion Stories Life Companion Broadridge1. Subtle marketing is the way to go.

During the most recent Metro Manila Film Festival 2013, I have seen how a movie was criticized for being a successful product placement rather than a movie. Now, product placements in movies are cute sometimes. But if product placements already found their ways to the movie reviews, then that’s a different story. When it was supposed to be a subtle form of marketing, it had successfully defeated itself by getting the “marketing” noticed. What’s supposed to be a smart and tasteful advertising done within a movie turned out to be blatant and offensive. Companies won’t want that for their brands.

But I commend the makers of the new Samsung S4 ad featuring the Broadridge Education Centre in Thailand built by Trisha Silvers. She built the school in memory of her husband who died during the tsunami that devastated Thailand in 2004. When I saw the ad, I was just looking for some live Ed Sheeran videos on YouTube, but when the ad played, I did not skip the ad (one thing I normally do by the way).

I was caught by its good sounds, good cinematography, good narration and good subject. The product placement waited very very patiently until the end and it was done very very tastefully. 

I wasn’t offended at all. 

In fact, I did love it and that’s why I am writing this blog review right now, out of the blue, this one hot afternoon, without anyone, not even a sponsor, telling me to do so.

2. Even from miles away, people can already detect if you will be selling to them. There’s absolutely no need to push your ads down their throats.

The problem with some companies is that when they want to create ads, all they think about is making money. They have forgotten that the people who they want to talk to, before seeing their ads, had already been preoccupied by the thousands of ads they have heard over the radio when they woke up, seen on TV while having their breakfasts, passed by posted on billboards on the way to work and stumbled upon while playing with their favorite mobile app. Now, if you are the advertiser, what made you think that your let’s-make-more-money ad will stand out from the many ads that your target audience had already seen past yours?

The truth is, people are smarter nowadays. They can already smell, even from miles away, if someone wants to sell something to them. But being smart doesn’t mean being snob. People did not necessarily become more snobbish by becoming smarter. They will still want to listen to you, talk to you and ask you questions. But you have to be worth their very very limited time and attention. You have to be credible, creative and authentic. Remember that three.

This may be the reason why I watched the Samsung S4 ad from start to finish. The story wasn’t about the phone, with which I won’t be able to relate to, not yet, not right away. But I will be able to relate to Trisha Silvers. Her story wasn’t so different from the stories of my fellow Filipinos who survived the devastation brought about by the super typhoon Yolanda, also known as Haiyan.

Some of my important lessons in online video marketing, I learned through this Samsung S4 ad, and are hereby encapsulated by the three statements below.
  • Share a story that your target audience will be able to relate to.
  • Focus on that story, not on your product.
  • Patiently wait for the time when you shall reveal your product. Do not overexpose.

3. Too much marketing (like in all other things) is bad marketing.

A new day has come. 

Finally, subtle marketing is taking over the other traditional ways to advertise a brand. Also, a new breed of ad-sensitive but still the same story-loving people is here to stay. Will this give birth to better advertisers too?

That will depend on how sensitive advertisers will want to be in the coming days. Will they listen solely to their annual profitability goals or will they listen to their audience? Or will they find a way to do both?

In my humble opinion, advertisers should be great storytellers, first and foremost. And great storytellers should have a deep sense of what’s enough for the story and what’s overdoing it. For video ads that involve subtle product placements, please listen to the storytellers and not the Chief Financial Officer. The former will most likely know the way.

4. If people like it, they will search for it. If they are not yet looking for it, create a demand by targeting the emotions in an almost invisible way.

Okay, I really like the Samsung S4 Trisha Silvers video ad. Hands down. But there’s a loophole in the campaign. When the ad ended, I wanted to see the ad again. However, YouTube has no replay ad button. So I Googled the ad. The result? Nada. I tried the website. And then? Disappointing. I tried Facebook. Well, it wasn’t easy but I found it eventually. But let me say that it took me ages. But I still took the hassle of looking it up because I was truly impressed by the ad that I want to write about it. But what if I am just a regular guy who still want to replay the ad but doesn’t have the time or wasn’t persistent enough?

Okay, my point is, the “way back” to the ad must not be that difficult to find. You place a really good ad for a few seconds on YouTube, you make sure people will be able to find it again easily. Samsung S4 can make use of their current website or maybe even create a separate microsite for this. I did not find the Trisha Silvers ad easily on their website that’s why I got a bit disappointed. But one thing I learned is that, in looking for something, especially when I already know what brand I am looking for, my initial instinct is to look at the website, and then Facebook. Sadly, the ad wasn’t on the website. I found it on Facebook, which loads slowly by the way, and the resolution of the video, smaller.

On its Facebook page, I found out that Trisha Silver’s story is just one of stories under the campaign entitled, “Companion Stories”. There is one story by Grandma Mary and the other by Richy Carrasco. I will check them out later.

To summarize my whole point, I just want to say that this Companion Stories campaign must be easily searchable by fans like me. Without a good and sustainable call to action or follow through, the life of a video ad (just like any other online ad) stops.

By the way, I remember posting about 2014 being the year of storytellers. When I saw this campaign by Samsung S4, I got the chills.

5. Your ads shall target the emotion. Your website and social media pages will feed the mind afterwards.

The emotions, the irrational ones, the feelings. These are the initial targets. When you got your audience curious, you lead them to your website and social media pages to feed their convictions, their rational sides, their minds. This is why product features and benefits must only be revealed detail by detail in the website, not in the video ads. It’s all about using all these online touchpoints smartly and strategically.

Again, kudos to the team behind the Companion Stories campaign. If you guys decide to send me an S4 to my doorsteps, I will never decline it. Haha! :)) Thank you for sharing the story of Trisha Silvers and for this beautiful campaign. May my inputs be of help.

Of course, you may want to check out the video that made me write all these things above. The video that started it all. So here you go guys, click play!

For more Companion Stories, please visit Samsung will love it.