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RIP Greg Giraldo

greg_giraldo

I first met Greg Giraldo when I was just starting out in stand-up, and was so impressed by how gracious and encouraging he was.  He’s been one of my favorite comedians, and I had always planned to reverse engineer his first Comedy Central Presents show — it was technically perfect.  Oh, and hilarious.  (and not as angry as his more recent work.)

What I also loved about this guy is that even though he nailed a near perfect score on the LSAT and a cush job with a swanky NYC law firm, after his first stand-up performance, he quit his job the following day to pursue what he loved.  RIP brother.

Greg Giraldo – Homeless Guy
comedians.comedycentral.com

Comedy & Cheeseburger blog series

My doctor told me to cut back on dairy and red meat, which in layman’s terms means “write a blog about cheeseburgers.”  I’m no food critic, and a pretty simple man in general, so most burgers will score a 10.  This purpose of the series is not to offer useful information on where to find the best patty in NYC.  It’s to provide a structure for sharing stories about the pursuit of comedy in Gotham, and  a justification for the increased dining-out expense.  My wife is a former Deloitte accountant, so I get audited every fiscal quarter.

I’ll date back to the New York Comedy Festival to mark the official birth of this series, giving me an excuse  to re-post my photo with Ricky Gervais.   Before the show, Ian Berger, producer for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, and I grabbed dinner at the Redeye Grill.  The venue is not on my list, but Ian picked it for proximity  as it’s directly across 7th Ave from Carnegie Hall.  about a 60 second commute.  Or approximately 90 secs in traffic.  It was a little on the swanky side for my liking, but the burger was very good.

Ricky Gervais backstage at Carnegie Hall

After a hilarious one-hour set which included an Elmo cameo, we went backstage to give Ricky a few notes on his Noah bit; chatted with the opener  Todd Barry, also Janeane Garofalo, then headed off to the afterparty at the Empire Hotel rooftop bar, where they served some amazing Kobe beef mini-burgers that tasted even better than our dinner.

After much internal debate  over the burger critique, I decided to give the Redeye Grill  a 10.

Redeye Grill
890 Seventh Ave. @  56th St.
(212) 541-9000

See reviews from Zagat and Yelp

NYCF Afterparty at Empire Hotel Rooftop bar

Here’s one of Ian’s field pieces, “Borderline Cops”

The Daily Show With Jon Stewart Mon – Thurs 11p / 10c
Borderline Cops
www.thedailyshow.com

The Business Case for Nonsense

I went to Harvard Business School.

But it was only for one evening.  Last Thursday, I was invited to present a case study on using comedy in corporate YouTube videos, and shared “Mainframe: The Art of the Sale.”  This video series we published in August 2006 continues to be discussed, simply because it’s funny.  It’s listed as a case study in the second edition of bestseller  The New Rules of Marketing and PR by David Meerman Scott, published this month.  (Congrats, David!)

Comedy done well has the power to cut through clutter and to influence, and that’s helped me get an honorable mention on Click-Z’s Social Media All-Stars list.  My thanks to Erik Qualman, author of Socialnomics.

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic

Here’s my presentation:The Business Case for Nonsense: IBM Social Media

View more presentations from Tim Washer.

Best practices for creating B2B marketing videos

Interview with David Meerman Scott on producing comedy videos for the corporate world.  Thanks to Matt Kaplan and the folks at VisibleGains.

Advertising Age: IBM’s Zany Viral Video Chief

Earlier this week AdAge reported on the case study I discussed on the use of humor in corporate web video.  I showed a few clips including one from our Smarter Planet campaign.  “Mainframe: The Art of the Sale” earned some great press coverage.  The San Francisco Chronicle blog “What are They Drinking in Armonk,” ZDNet compared it favorably against Microsoft’s broadcast ads with Jerry Seinfeld and Bill Gates, industry luminary James Governor blogged “Selling big iron the David Brent way,” and Comedy Central selected it as a finalist in its Test Pilot’s contest.

Case study presentation from the BDI Conference:

View all six videos in the Art of the Sale series here.