Six Ways to Market Ahead of a Recession

Recessions happen.  And while no one knows when, or how severe, one thing is certain — there’s one on the horizon in the next few years.  So how are you marketing now to minimize its impact when it lands? First of all, understand how a recession will impact your customers — and by extension, your Read More

Your Mission Statement Is Broken.

Do you have a mission statement. If you do, why? Seriously. Let’s be honest. Mission statements are pretty useless. They’re labored over and argued about. They’re revisited and revised. They almost always grow longer over time. They’re put on walls and websites. And then mostly forgotten. Don’t believe it? Take a walk. Ask the first five team members you see to tell you the Read More

Bend It Like Bezos

In his terrific book, Marketing Rebellion: The Most Human Company Wins, writer Mark Schaefer points out something that might surprise you. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos believes that focusing on change can be less important than thinking about what isn’t changing. Bezos points out that people will always want a low price. They’ll always prefer a wide selection. And they’ll Read More

Why Marketing Fails

Marketing works. Except when it doesn’t. So when you miss your marketing goals, it pays to dig into the real reasons behind the shortfall. (Hint: it’s almost never that the goals were too aggressive.) Here are five ways marketing can go sideways on you. UntargetedUnless you have unlimited resources, you have to focus on your best and most likely Read More

Time to Retire Your SWOT Team?

It’s a fixture in strategic planning sessions and retreats. It consumes much of the planning time. And it may be time to retire it. SWOT (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis makes perfect sense on paper. But that rarely translates into real forward motion for an organization. Here’s why. First — and this is huge — there are rarely Read More

Five Social Media Pitfalls to Avoid

There are a lot of great reasons to invest in social media. It can be inexpensive. It’s immediate and instantaneous. It invites interaction. It can get shared and even go viral. If all that’s true, then why do so many businesses feel they don’t get the return they hoped for from social media? Here are five possible culprits 1. Failure Read More

Fear Cripples a Brand

You probably believe (or at least hope) that your company has a vibrant brand — a position in the market that you can call your own. But a true brand is really hard to build. And of all the things that can cripple or even kill a brand, fear tops the list. Fear chokes off a brand’s power Read More

A Perfect TV Commercial

It hasn’t played during the Superbowl — and it never will. It won’t show up on any “people’s choice” lists. But there is a perfect TV commercial airing right now. And you should pay attention to it. It’s a template for how to get your message across in 30 seconds in a way that sticks and sells.It’s the new Read More

Get Annoyed

Do you want a truly unique and powerful brand? One sure approach is to solve a problem that none of your competitors have solved for customers of your industry. The first step? Figuring out what that problem is. That seems to be the insurmountable stumbling block for most businesses. It’s just hard to look at Read More

What’s Free AND Makes Your Brand Stronger?

It turns out that simply being nice to customers can actually make them…better customers. In Compassionomics: The Revolutionary Scientific Evidence that Caring Makes a Difference, physician scientists Stephen Trzeciak and Anthony Mazzarelli make the case that being treated nicely has a measurable physical impact. Extensive research compiled by the authors reveals that compassion has a Read More