Chevrolet & Nintendo; Two Brands Getting Social Engagement Right

Nov 9, 2010 by

This past weekend in Dallas was an active one when it came to being a blogger and working with internationally recognized brands Chevrolet and Nintendo.

Through the power of Twitter, over the past two years now I’ve developed an online friendship with Donna McLallen of Chevrolet.  You might know her at @GMTexas and now @DrivePower on Twitter.  (If you don’t, I encourage you to reach out to her.)

As you will recall, back in April I went out to Texas Motor Speedway for the first time in living in the DFW area for almost 10 years.  It rained that weekend so the races ultimately were run on the weekdays, but there came the promise from Donna that I’d be invited back in November.

Well, the weather Saturday was perfect.  I received tickets to go to the special tented area Chevrolet had set up at the track.  I got to take a pit tour.  And then I got to drive one of about 50 Silverados around the track with a driver standing up in the back.   Then I got to go to great seats in the grandstand and watch the race.

But in the midst of all that was the subtle exposure to the new like of Chevrolet cars and trucks.  We all know I’m a huge fan of the Traverse (see

It was a completely positive experience.  There was no push.  There’s not even a push to write this post.  It was that comfortable of an event.


Sunday afternoon proved to be a great experience with Nintendo and their partnership with the American Heart Association.  At the Four Seasons in Irving, I got the opportunity to meet new people, check out the Wii Sports Resort product, and then have a very nice, (and healthy) lunch, and hear from inspirational speaker Hank Wasiak, and three health panelists from the DFW area. (I’m reading Wasiak’s book Change The Way You See Everything now and a review shall follow shortly.)

After a question and answer session, we were invited back down to the display room and were free to play some more before being given a goodie bag filled with a Wasiak’s book, a Nintendo shirt, and a copy of Wii Sports Resort.

Again, the push wasn’t on the products being sold.  The push was on having fun getting fit and a focus on the seven things you can do to get your body healthy that are recommended by the AHA.

Before leaving, we all were encouraged to write a letter to ourselves that will be mailed to us at some future date.  In my letter to me, I encouraged myself to keep moving forward, to keep my focus, and to keep working hard to eat better, exercise and hopefully, live a while longer as a result of doing such.


I provided some clues as to what about all this really worked for me, but I’ll refresh.

1) These brands were featuring their products, but there was no heavy-handed “car salesman” push to get me to buy anything.  That makes the experience less stressful.

2) The events were fun and positive experiences.  One got me outdoors and walking (From my Nintendo PT Walking pedometer I walked about 6.5 miles on Saturday at TMS), and the other got me doing interactive exercises in my living room, and provided me with a stimulating, self-motivating book, which is just the sort of thing I read, re-read and then apply.

3) They provided me with new contacts, gave me an opportunity to meet new bloggers and friends, and already have led to some very promising business opportunities.

Over on my business site, we talk about the social impact, innovation and invention tactics we use to help clients expand their reach and build strong communities around their products and services.

From the activities this past weekend, I have two new and incredible examples of brands that are getting it right.

Disclosure: I received access into TMS, a Chevrolet t-shirt, was fed and drove around the TMS track one lap while at the TMS event.  Through the Nintendo event, which was arranged by Brand About Town in LA, a contact I made through the Modern Media Man Summit, I received a lunch at the Irving, Texas Four Seasons, a copy of Hank Wasiak’s book, a copy of Wii Sports Resort, and a Nintendo shirt.  I have not been paid in cash by either of these companies to write this piece.

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@GMTexas, The Beginning of our Traverse Adventure–We got the car!

Jun 21, 2010 by

UPDATE: We’ve got the car!

It’s 9:03 a.m. and the girls and I now have everything packed.  We’re waiting on arrival of our 2010 Chevy Traverse that’s being loaned to us until June 30.

As soon as we get the car this morning, we’ll load it up, load a few pics, and get on the road, headed toward Northern Indiana.   We won’t make it today.  But we’ll put a lot of distance between us and Dallas.

More information will be posted on  And an added surprise, my daughter, Chandler is going to be tweeting, too!

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What do @Twitter @SnickersIceCrm @GaryVee @M3Summit @GMTexas Have in Common?

Jun 3, 2010 by

As noted in this space many, many times, I’m a big fan of Gary Vaynerchuk and his book Crush It! My copy of the book is covered in as much self-applied ink as what the publisher printed.  As a man/dad blogger, I’ve really stepped up my social media presence in 2010 thanks to reading and re-reading Crush It! and other noted books, and the results are really beginning to show.

One of the primary points we’re trying to make to men/dad bloggers through the Modern Media Man Summit is that besides the great one like GaryVee, women and moms aren’t the only ones who can do social media and do it successfully.  And wisely, in the blog world we’re beginning to see brands begin to better recognize that we men/dads are out here wanting to do good things with our social media presence and do something quid pro quo as well.


Last Thursday morning before Mom and I headed out the door to go to on our adventure trip for the Taste of Creede, CO for the weekend, I stumbled upon the mouth-watering taste at the thought of  Snicker’s Ice Cream brand’s Twitter account and sent them the following tweet:

@SnickersIceCrm: I’ll bet with lots of dry ice & some ingenuity I could sample some samples & tell the world how good your product is!

Their almost immediate response was simple and to the point:

Ha! How about I send you some coupons!

With a follow up DM of my mailing address, I smiled, told mom how cool that was and we walked out the door on our trip.


Today, June 3, a week later, I received in the mail 6 coupons:  Three for $1 off the Snicker’s Ice Cream product lines and three coupons for FREE boxes of their product lines. 

Feast your mouth-watering eyes on this: The coupons are good for “Any one MULTI PACK: DOVEBAR Brand 3 Pack, DOVEBAR Miniatures, DOVE Brand Packaged Ice Cream, TWIX Ice Cream Bar 6 Pack, M&M’s Brand Cookie Ice Cream Cone 6 Pack, SNICKER’S Ice Cream Cone 6 Pack, SNICKER’S Ice Cream Bar 6 Pack, SNICKER’S Ice Cream Bar Miniatures.

Until I just typed that, I didn’t know there was a Twix Ice Cream Bar, and to know that there are six of them in a pack, well, I’m all that about that. (Just don’t tell my EA SPORTS Active friends!)

You see, the other great thing about all this is that I did this as a man blogger/dad blogger!  Yes, even with testosterone in my system, I’m able to reach out to brands, make contacts, offer to do something positive for their company, and reap incredible rewards because of it.

Hey, and now I also get to enjoy SIX TWIX Ice Cream Bars that I won’t be telling my DDs that I have!  Sorry girls, I don’t know where they went…..


If you ever watched the 1994 movie “Speechless” with Michael Keaton and Geena Davis, you will recall that Keaton said at the end of a good story, there’s a “YaSeeTimmy,” just like in Lassie when they always said, “You see Timmy ….” and passed on an important lesson from the episode.

The Ya See Tim,/Jim/Gary/Chuck/Don, of this lesson is two-fold:

  1. Brands want to have relationships with men/dad bloggers. At the present, it’s sort of a challenge for them to find us.  Without parsing any words, it’s been a Mom Blogger World for far too long.  Moms do a lot of the buying in a household, but so do we men/dads. Reaching out to brands and connecting with them can be a positive experience.  There needs to be a system for helping brands find dads.  I know some peeps who are working on just that!
  2. Men/Dads, we need to do a better job of reaching out to brands. They’re not going to come looking for us.  Well, they’re kind of having to, but it makes it a challenge for them when they can find 500 mom bloggers at the click of an enter button on Google and they can’t do that when they go looking for us.  We must step up our efforts to present ourselves to brands online, to build positive mutually-beneficial relationships with the brand managers, and then do honest and positive things to support that relationship.

There is an ever-increasing role in the blogosphere for men/dads.  There are some great pioneers in this field–e.g. Gary Vaynerchuk, etc.  but there are more of us still standing around on the shoulder of the information highway wishing we had the courage or knew the right way to stop a top brand coming down the expressway.


I can’t give a better current example of the benefits of a quid pro quo men/dad blogger exchange than my relationship with Donna M. from @GMTexas. Our connectivity began through her own Twitter account and then through the corporate account.

I’ve been invited to three events with GM now in the past two months and been in town to enjoy two of them.  While I was savoring the thought of eating the Snicker’s Ice Cream bars, I received a phone call on behalf of GM.  From roughly noon June 21, 2010 to noon June 28, 2010, I’ll be the driver of a 2010 Chevy Traverse LTZ, complete with OnStar, XM Radio and free to go anywhere I want to with it during those seven days.

The girls and I are planning an adventure for that week.  As a matter of fact, you already can go to and find yourself right back here at  Just wait, in a few days, there will be a specific page set up just so you can find out great things about this new product from GM.

And that, my friends, makes all this even better than the convertible roadster Keaton was driving Davis around in Speechless.

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Me in a 2010 Corvette, yes, I know, I do look good in that car

Apr 21, 2010 by

Saturday, courtesy of GM Texas, I was invited to the Texas Motor Speedway as a blogging dad to check out the new products GM has on the market.  I've already noted how impressed I was with the Chevy Traverse.

Here's a complimentary photo they took of me in the 2010 silver convertible Corvette.  I had a nice time in this ride.  And there's also a funny video to go along with it.

(Photo by AEJE Event Photography)

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