You’ve Been Trumped

American tycoon Donald Trump has hit the first ball on his new Scottish golf course on Tuesday.

The building of Trump International Golf Links in Aberdeenshire has been controversial, with environmental campaigners opposing the construction of the course on protected sand dunes and Mr Trump himself complaining about a potential offshore wind farm being built near the site.

The course will open to the public on Sunday July 15 with a series of private events being held this week.

The businessman cut a ribbon on the first tee on Tuesday to mark the opening and hit the first balls with former Ryder Cup captain Colin Montgomerie and 1999 Open champion Paul Lawrie.

More than £100m has been spent on the course and the clubhouse, but further plans for a hotel and homes in the area have been put on hold until a final decision is made on the offshore wind farm proposal.

Trump International said 160 jobs have been created so far with positions in management, catering and course maintenance.

Work on the course began in July 2010 after the tycoon won planning permission to start work on the construction four years after plan were first put forward.

By way of a topical look at the development, take a look at the trailer for the movie “You’ve Been Trumped” released in 2011 (links to the full film are available…).

What Are The Odds?

Author: Eilidh Donaldson @ Tweetsport (@tweetsportcouk)

Eh, no you don’t…

Football is a funny old game but Arsene Wenger isn’t laughing. More later.

The end of the football season 2011-12 was spectacular. Man City won the Premiership with the last kick of the game and Chelsea’s 10 man defence claimed the Champion’s League against a shell shocked Bayern to prove anything is possible.

The Euros may have had a predictable conclusion, with the ‘boring’ Spain lifting the trophy, but there was at least one surprising moment.  The invisible Nicklas Bendtner can apparently play and he’s actually quite good (!) but only in a Danish shirt and with Paddy on his pants.

Maybe Arsene can get that passed by the EPL? No? Ok.

There has barely been a chance to breathe before UK football kicked off again. Not on the pitch obviously and this is where Arsene ears prick up.

In an amazing 72 hours football has been turned on its head. None were total shocks maybe but good and bad things happen in threes and these are three whoppers!

Rangers are doooooomed

I’ll admit to kind of losing the thread of this story but essentially the 11 other SPL teams don’t want to play anymore, whatever Rangers are calling themselves these days, and they have taken away the ball.

So will there be room at the Inn in a lower division or will Rangers disappear? One of the legendary teams in world football -unthinkable. Turkeys voted for Christmas.

Paddy Power are offering odds of 1-50 on Celtic to win the league next year.

The Resurrection of AVB

Its lucky Harry Redknapp had his heart fixed at the start of a busy year as it’s been a rollercoaster since then. In court for tax evasion, crowned England Manager, watched Muamba collapse, oversaw Spurs spectacular slump, snubbed by the FA, shoved by Levy and stood down from BBC commentating at the Euros. Wow!

The final straw – being replaced by AVB, the man not good enough to last a season at rivals Chelsea. That’s not to say that Andre Villas-Boas isn’t in good company, the list of ex-Chelsea managers is full of legends of the game but if even one of the stories of what the players did is true he isn’t one to keep the dressing room happy. He’s picked the spot for his portacabin already.

He’s 8-1 to leave White Hart Lane in 2012.

RVP walks

Arsene might want to look away now.

History repeats itself. Its summer, it’s raining and the top Arsenal player wants to leave. Gooner’s fans take to Twitter but there appears to be no surprise but is there a glimmer of blame for Arsene. Asleep at the wheel again?

Calls for Guardiola to get himself over to London have started and how things have worked out in 2012 so far. I wouldn’t bet against it.

Hey Paddy, what are the odds?

Tweetsport is a real-time sports site covering football news and other things which involve balls and scores. Created by a girl. Who knew?

Ten Tips For Using LinkedIn

Whether you’re new to LinkedIn or have only just signed up, here are a few basics tips to bring yourself up to speed.  

1. Invest time in creating a complete profile

Complete means filling in every single section: skills and expertise, career history, adding an appropriate photo, a link to your company website and recommendations from the people who know you and your work best. Import your email contacts. This will help you to build your immediate network quickly and with relevant, interested people.

2. Join groups based on your interests.

If you are like me, try these three for starters: The Sports Business Exchange, World Sports Forum and Ecommerce and Online Marketing Experts. Post a discussion topic in each of these groups, whether it’s asking for advice for a problem you need help with, or some best practice from your job that you would like to share with others. When people respond, make sure you acknowledge their replies, and if you could be useful to one another in the future then send a connection request.   Assuming you got this far, there are other ways that you can really get the benefit of having an active and engaging LinkedIn profile. You need to learn how to build networks that deliver more value – and how you can become a more useful connection to others.

3. Build contacts through LinkedIn Signal  

LinkedIn Signal can help you build new contacts with shared interests. Change the search box option from ‘People’ to ‘Updates’ and type in “Sports Marketing” to find out who else shares views on that topic – equally, search whatever topic is of interest and relevance to you.

4. Have a voice.  

Regularly commenting on and sharing interesting and useful updates helps you keep in touch and be useful. Doing the same with second and third connections will help you engage and build new contacts in no time. When you’ve joined a discussion, share that with your LinkedIn contacts too.

5. Use the ‘People-you-may-know’ feature.

Click the ‘See more’ tab and seek introductions to relevant connections through your network. Be absolutely clear about why you would like to be introduced and what added value you bring by being part of their contact group.

6. Earn credibility by sharing your knowledge.

LinkedIn Answers is a good way of building credibility with new connections. Change the search box option from ‘People’ to ‘Answers’, enter keywords such as ecommerce and see if there are any questions posed which you feel you can answer. The person asking the question gets to vote on the best answer; if this is you, that’s also highlighted on your profile.

7. Make announcements through your status bar.

When you are going to an industry event, announce it on LinkedIn. Ask who else is going, arrange to meet up at the event and remember to add these new connections to your network for future reference.

8. Share content quickly using LinkedIn today.

Use LinkedIn Today to read the latest news relevant to your specific interests. This is a surefire way of sharing content from a rich variety of sources, which will position you as a more interesting connection to your network.

9. Personalise your LinkedIn address.  

Make the link to your profile more memorable by personalising it. Click on ‘Edit profile’, scroll down to public profile section and insert your name for a link which is now easier for people you meet to remember.

10. Research your industry.  

If you are looking for a career move, it’s a great idea to use LinkedIn to research organisations you have applied to and look at the skills and experience of the people that they recruit. Follow the company to receive company updates and news feeds and use your network to get introduced to connections who can give you a personal insight into what it’s like to work there.

Spain: Best Team of All Time?

Spain thrashed Italy 4-0 in the final of Euro 2012 in Kiev on Sunday to win their third major tournament in a row. Vicente del Bosque led his side to an emphatic victory in Ukraine to become the first coach to win a World Cup, a European Championship and a Champions League title.

Spain have now won the last two European Championships and the last World Cup in South Africa. So are they the best national side to play the game?

BBC Sport looks at the contenders and asks the experts for their views. Who do you think is the best team?

Spain 2008-12
BBC chief football writer Phil McNulty

The debate began long before Spain’s goalkeeper and captain Iker Casillas lifted the trophy at the end of the Euro 2012 final. In fact the debate began long before the end of the tournament in Poland and Ukraine.

Such was the scale and artistry of their 4-0 win against Italy that they staked the most eloquent claim to be the greatest international team in history.

When the template for the all-time great sides is assembled, Brazil’s legendary World Cup-winning side in Mexico in 1970 is invariably used. It was built around legends like Pele, Tostao, Jairzinho, Rivelinho and Gerson – and many more besides in a marriage of team work and individual brilliance.

Martin Keown – Football Analyst

“Spain are going to dominate for years to come. They have to be the best side ever. I can’t see any other team getting near this. Spain have really set the bar high and they have time on their side. They’re beautiful to watch and there’s something extra special about this team. They’re a group of winners.”

Germany have had great sides through the ages and Argentina won World Cups in relatively quick succession in 1978 and 1986 – but has anyone ever had a tighter stranglehold on the world game than Spain?

They have now been untouchable in three major competitions and already few would back against them in South America when the World Cup goes to Brazil in 2014.

They are the ultimate combination of silk and steel. They conceded one goal in Euro 2012 and have the Barcelona “carousel” of Xavi and Andres Iniesta augmented by Real Madrid’s Xabi Alonso in midfield.

Del Bosque felt confident enough in this brilliant side to ignore the claims of a conventional striker such as Fernando Torres, although he made a devastating late contribution against Italy.

David Silva and Cesc Fabregas more than compensated – and it was all done without their great goalscorer David Villa and iconic defender Carles Puyol.

The greatest? It would have to be a very powerful argument against Spain.

Brazil 1958
Tim Vickery, South American football expert

“Brazil 1970 are usually wheeled out when the debate gets going on the best international side of all time. But take away the advantage of television – Mexico 70 was the first World Cup screened all over the globe – and their predecessors from 12 years earlier have a much better claim.

On a man-for-man basis it is a no contest. It is hard to think of anyone from the 1970 side who would have walked in to the 58 team. And Brazil of 1958 had so much that was new. Their pioneering use of a back four gave them defensive cover – Brazil did not let in a goal until the semi-final, where they beat France 5-2.”

Alan Shearer – BBC Sport

“This Spain team is the best ever. We mention the Brazil sides with Pele but this is absolutely unbelievable what they have achieved.”

There were attacking full-backs and dangerous free-kicks. Their preparation – with physical specialists, doctors, dentists and even a premature experiment with a sports psychologist – broke new ground. And with the collective side of their game right, the individual talent could flourish. While Pele and Garrincha were both on the field, Brazil never lost a game.

They were the first Brazilian winners of the World Cup – and remain the only South American side to have lifted the trophy in Europe. And they also kept on winning. Only a controversial last-minute refereeing decision prevented them claiming the 1959 Copa America, and they successfully defended their title in the 1962 World Cup, despite losing Pele, then at the peak of his powers, in the second game.

They beat Spain on the way – it would be fascinating to see them up against the Spain of today.”

France 1998-2000
French football journalist Matt Spiro

“France’s crowning moment came when they won the 1998 World Cup on home soil, yet the team that clinched the European crown two years later was a far more complete side and is widely regarded as the nation’s best ever.

Use accessible player and disable flyout menusEuro 2000: France victorious over Italy
While goalkeeper Fabien Barthez and the powerful back four of Lilian Thuram, Laurent Blanc, Marcel Desailly and Bixente Lizarazu were imperious in both competitions, Roger Lemerre’s team also displayed an enviable attacking swagger.

Patrick Vieira excelled in midfield in 2000, adding steel alongside canny skipper Didier Deschamps, and the inimitable Zinedine Zidane was by then established as the world’s leading player. The schemer’s mesmerising performance against Portugal in the semi-final remains one of the most stylish in the competition’s history.

Alan Hansen – Football Analyst

“The first-half performance by Spain in the final was superlative and they should go down as the best team in history. Their technical ability is better than anyone we’ve seen.

“We will be talking about that first-half display for 30 or 40 years.”

In attack, Les Bleus were blessed with a deadly cocktail of talent. The speed and skill of Thierry Henry and Nicolas Anelka, David Trezeguet’s potency, Youri Djorkaeff’s trickery, and the guile of Christophe Dugarry invariably left opponents floundering as 13 goals were plundered in six games – one more than Spain this year.

Like Vicente del Bosque’s current Spain team, France had extraordinary depth – as the final victory over Italy demonstrated.

They were on the verge of defeat when substitute Sylvain Wiltord struck a late leveller. In extra-time, two more players sent on by Lemerre – Robert Pires and Trezeguet – combined to conjure a sublime golden goal.

It was a fitting way for this incredibly tough, gifted and ruthless team to sign off.”

Do you have anything to add? Please leave a comment below:

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Traditional CRM vs Social CRM

Author: Luke Brynley-Jones @ Econsultancy

Over the past two years Our Social Times has hosted social CRM conferences in London, New York and Paris.

It’s a fast-growing industry with many specialist themes, but the first question the speakers always get asked is: “How does social CRM differ from traditional CRM?”

With social CRM events in Frankfurt, Brussels and Paris looming, we’ve set out to pre-empt the “traditional vs social” question by publishing our answer in advance in infographic form (below).

Inevitably, this is a simplistic representation of a complex issue, but it’s also a good starting point for organisations seeking to integrate social media into their customer and stakeholder management processes.

Within the four uses of social CRM we’ve highlighted, Marketing, Sales, Feedback and Service & Support, the shift in thinking and approach required to capitalise on recent developments in customer behaviour (and expectations) is marked.

That said, best practices are emerging. American Airlines has a highly developed social CRM strategy and is implementing it effectively both for marketing and customer service. I’ve also seen excellent case studies from VistaPrint, Peugeot, Everything Everywhere, Citibank and SNCF.

Examples like these are deepening our collective knowledge and encouraging more brands to shift from traditional to social CRM.