Notes from the Road: Day 2 (or "I talk too much")

By: Richard Brewer-Hay

I talk too much. That much is evident after another day on the road. Anyone that has met me knows this already but you know it’s bad when I actually notice it too.

eBay Germany

I started the day at 8:30 this morning, moving from the internal communications group, where I spent the majority of my day yesterday, to the corporate (external) communications group for the day. Today was their team meeting that included brief presentations by PR representatives from all the different groups within the eBay German office and I presented an overview of Ink to a room of about 15 people. The meeting was scheduled from 9:30 – 11am. I was added to the agenda and was invited to go first. When I looked up at the clock after my 6-page preso, a run-through of Ink, and a following Q&A, it was 10:30 and there were only 30 minutes for everyone else to go through their updates. Like I said, I talk too much.

One thing we did discuss was the possibility of having regular blog posts – like once a month – written in German on Ink with translated posts in English immediately below. Initially I’m thinking it would only be for posts that directly involve, or are targeted at, the German market but in the future who knows? Logistically tough I grant you but certainly worth looking into for all markets.

eBay Magazines
I discovered today that there are some pretty cool magazines distributed in Germany focused solely on eBay. (I say “pretty cool” but I have no idea what the specific copy of any of them is because they’re written entirely in German – I’m talking more about the fact that they exist at all). The first, eBay Magazine, is a publication that can be purchased at any newsstand in Germany and is an independent publication from a publishing house. It is geared toward “eBay Lifestyle” and promotes any and all things eBay with tips, hints, etc. on how to sell and buy on eBay.

The second, published by eBay, is eBay Katalog and is a quarterly publication targeted at top buyers in Germany with a highlight of specific items and deals heading into each period of the year.

The third, and most impressive in my opinion, is the eBay Seller magazine. Published by eBay, this magazine is sent to approximately 12,000 commercial sellers on eBay in Germany and includes 4 pages of personalized content, specifically targeted at the seller receiving the magazine. A break down of their selling stats and individual information makes the publication extremely unique and it has won a number of industry awards for its attention to detail.

European Team Brief
As I already stated, I was pretty impressed with the weekly team brief that the UK team conducts in-person in their Richmond office. eBay Europe conducts a similar team brief but because it has to go to so many different regions in Europe, it is sent via email. The email typically includes a link to a video in what is called the “Meet the Team” segment. Tobias invited yours truly to be the “Meet the Team” guest this week. We must have shot the take about four times. It turns out that the video needs to be about 1-2 minutes in length. Like I said before, I talk too much and we couldn’t keep it below 4. Apologies to Tobias for the editing job he has now. When I get a copy of it, I’ll put in the Ink video feed. But like I said, it’s pretty brief so no promises.

I finished the day meeting 1:1 with Maike Fuest who works in the Corp Comms team focused on Trust & Safety. Like the US, and everywhere else for that matter right now, counterfeit items and e-commerce fraud are hot topics in Germany and with the recent rulings of L’Oreal, LVMH and Tiffany, anyone working in communications around T&S has their hands full. Maike is no exception. It was great to get her input on Ink and we talked about future opportunities writing blog posts for Ink. (I’ll write more on online safety tomorrow).

Speaking of tomorrow. Meetings include presenting Ink to the Internet Marketing team, Internal Comms team and some Customer Service folks. I also am getting a chance to sit down with the new VP of Customer Service for Marketplaces in Europe and to discuss with individuals about how I can make Ink a better platform for international markets to converse with their constituents the way we do in the US.

Looking back at this post, I have proven the point of my first sentence. I talk too much.

Until tomorrow…

Cheers,
RBH