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Sam Fiorella
Sam Fiorella is a Partner at Sensei Marketing, a customer experience consultancy with offices in Toronto and New York. Sam is the co-author of Influence Marketing: How to Create, Manage and Measure Brand Influencers, which presents a new model for influence marketing that moves the conversation beyond the current social scoring trend. Sam is also the creator and moderator of the #bizforum Twitter debate, where for the past 2 years business professionals discuss the pros and cons of trending business-related topics each Wednesday night. Follow Sam on Twitter or connect with him on LinkedIn or on Google+.

Entries by Sam Fiorella

Klout Pivots, Embraces Content Aggregation

(2) Comments | Posted February 14, 2014 | 1:37 PM

The recent news that Klout, one of many social scoring companies, is being sold to the social media company Lithium Technologies, for $100 million has overshadowed the pivot it made in an attempt to remain relevant.

Klout will still rank people based on their social engagement, but...

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Airline Passengers Aren't Guests, They're Cargo

(2) Comments | Posted January 28, 2014 | 11:50 AM

Think back to the 1960s when customer service and satisfaction were something businesses took pride in. Consider how airlines built economy class seating in a 747 in the 1960s, and then compare that vision to what economy class travellers experience today.


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The Insidiousness of Facebook Messenger's Mobile App Terms of Service

(52) Comments | Posted December 1, 2013 | 5:15 PM

How much access to your (and your friends') personal data are you prepared to share for access to free mobile apps? I suspect the amount is significantly less than that which you actually agreed to share when blindly accepting the Terms of Service.

Case in point: Facebook's Messenger App,...

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Starbucks Enters Same-Sex Marriage Boycott Wars

(6) Comments | Posted November 5, 2013 | 11:19 AM

Mega coffee chain Starbucks has once again inserted its brand into the social and political arena. This time, its CEO Howard Schultz has taken a public stand on same sex marriage by telling an anti-gay investor that he's not welcomed.

Starbucks, already known for its support of gay rights,...

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Cyber-Bullying, Social Media, and Parental Responsibility

(10) Comments | Posted October 18, 2013 | 12:31 PM

The issue of bullying has been thrust into the national spotlight once again thanks to a rash of new teen bullying stories making the news. This despite the abundance of celebrity public service announcements, documentaries on the subject, and the so-called "zero-tolerance" policies adopted by many school boards.

The sad...

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Is Toronto Ready To Be Accessible?

(0) Comments | Posted October 7, 2013 | 4:53 PM

The 2015 Pan Am and Para-Pan Am Games are fast approaching. Is Toronto ready? A recent blog written by Paralympic athlete and Canadian wheelchair tennis champion Joel Dembe suggests there is reason for concern.

Dembe points to the lack of accessible transportation in Toronto, both public (subways,...

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Purpose-Built Accessible Vehicles Re-Introduced to Canadian Marketplace

(2) Comments | Posted September 17, 2013 | 12:07 PM

Earlier this summer, a wave of anxiety spread across the community of people with disabilities and their caregivers. VPG Autos, the creator of the MV-1, the world's first vehicle designed and built to standards for wheelchair accessibility, reported it ceased operations.

The MV-1 debuted in Canada at the Canadian...

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Miley Cyrus, Syria's Chemical Weapons, and the Business of News

(10) Comments | Posted August 29, 2013 | 6:26 PM

This has been an interesting news week. Well, maybe interesting isn't the right word. Troubling, confusing or even downright weird might sum it up better. Whichever you might be feeling, the end result is that we've learned (or possibly re-learned) a valuable lesson about the business of news.


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Social Media Authenticity and Other Lies

(13) Comments | Posted August 12, 2013 | 12:18 PM


Authenticity, one of the most overused words in social media publishing, is promoted as a key tenet of social media engagement for individuals and businesses alike. There's no disputing the mass adoption of social media for information gathering, information sharing, or just plain networking and communications by people around...

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Netflix Is the New Apple

(18) Comments | Posted July 17, 2013 | 4:12 PM

In a press release on June 27, 2013, Netflix reported that Orange is the New Black, the latest in its offering of original programming, will be renewed for a second season. This really isn't extraordinary news, except that the decision and announcement were made before the premiere of season one...

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Paula Deen and the Dilemma of Celebrity Endorsements

(66) Comments | Posted June 30, 2013 | 12:03 PM

I, along with most North Americans, have been following the Paula Deen story these past few weeks with morbid curiosity. For those of you who've been living under a rock this past week, it's the story of Lance Armstrong or Tiger Woods all over again. Celebrities are created or hired...

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The Sanctity of LinkedIn Contacts

(6) Comments | Posted June 14, 2013 | 2:33 PM

As a business professional, what is your most valuable asset: Your MBA, your years of experience or the awards on your shelf? Or maybe it's the profit your business made last quarter or the last successful projected you delivered? Each of these is important and each is valuable, yet none...

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The Intersection of News and Social Conversation

(6) Comments | Posted May 13, 2013 | 4:22 PM

The proliferation of Web-based devices such as smartphones and tablets, and the social media that they connect us to, has dramatically changed the way we communicate and exchange information. Their effect on interpersonal and brand-consumer communications is well-documented, yet continues to evolve. Nowhere has this change been more dramatic than...

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The Social Media Borg: A Culture of Likes

(14) Comments | Posted April 29, 2013 | 11:48 AM

As social media emerges out if its infancy, we are starting to get a sense of its personality and characteristics, what it will look like when it grows up. We're seeing early signs that the promised democratization of information and the ability to seek and engage in open dialogue might...

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How Journalists Spun RBC

(23) Comments | Posted April 16, 2013 | 8:18 AM

Last week, CBC News broke a story reporting that "dozens of employees at Canada's largest bank [RBC] are losing their jobs to temporary foreign workers, who are in Canada to take over the work of their department." The story was based on the statements of Dave...

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Google and Apple Join Ford as Key Influencers in the Auto Industry

(0) Comments | Posted April 1, 2013 | 2:24 PM

Ask average consumers or marketers who is most influential in the automotive sector and their response would most likely be Scott Monty of Ford or Ralph Paglia from Automotive Marketing Group (AMG). Alternatively, they may point to popular industry publications such as CAR and...

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Ignore Happy Customers At Your Peril

(7) Comments | Posted March 21, 2013 | 10:52 AM

This past week, along with family and friends, I made my annual pilgrimage to the craziness that is Orlando, Florida during spring break. It's not the long lines at Walt Disney World or the hectic Orlando International Airport that I dread; I don't look forward to flying an American airline...

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Exposing Cyber Shills and Social Media's Underworld

(10) Comments | Posted March 7, 2013 | 4:32 PM

It's been said that the Internet is the "great equalizer" because it provides the infrastructure for a small businesses to successfully compete with larger competitors. Enterprising and resourceful entrepreneurs can create an online presence that provides similar pricing, delivery and service with a lot less overhead than brick-and-mortar stores. The...

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The Addiction and Cost of Social Media

(23) Comments | Posted February 24, 2013 | 5:52 PM

Have you ever found yourself asking, "Where did the last hour go?" when connecting with friends or colleagues in social networks? Social media is like a drug; just a little taste and we can't help but want more. Social networks are the drug dealers; they facilitate our addiction to this...

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Critics Eating Crow: Google+ Becomes Second Largest Social Platform

(37) Comments | Posted January 27, 2013 | 4:28 PM

I wonder how many bloggers and journalists are eating crow this week after GlobalWebIndex released its GWI.8 (Q4 2012) study? The big story to come out of the report's findings is that while Twitter, the current darling of social media networks, continues to attract active users, Google+ surpassed...

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