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A Tale of 2 Credit Cards, or What’s Your Edge Over Your Competition?

After reading David Meerman Scott’s blog post on When Newsjacking is in Poor Form and Can Damage Your Brand (alas, I cannot read the original HubSpot post he’s referring to as apparently it was in such poor taste that HubSpot … Continue reading

Is Your Website About You, or Your Potential Customers?

A few months ago, I was drafting a website proposal for a client.  His website was somewhat bloated and unclear, and we had slowly been working on small sections of it and consulting on what could be changed immediately, but … Continue reading

What Marketing Gets You Customers?

Depends on your customers. Or, more specifically, on your potential customers. I know a fitness club whose first location was directly across the street from an elevated subway station platform. 75% of her clientele came from the sign she posted … Continue reading

How Does Your Audience Like Its Content Delivered?

I started thinking about this the other day as I stared at my overwhelmed email inbox. I’m usually pretty good about keeping on top of my inbox, but you know how it goes: You get busy, too busy to read … Continue reading

How to Stand Out From the Competition (Hint: It’s not by lowering your prices)

A lot of businesses, especially during times of economic hardship, tend to keep up with or surpass their competition by slashing their prices and selling more products or services. Don’t do it. For one thing, it will make you angry, … Continue reading

3 Key Ingredients for Product Virality, a la the “Fake Snake Cake”

A few weeks ago, I was scrolling through my Facebook feed when I was stopped by this: Unless you’ve been living in a cave without internet access (because even hermits have the ‘net these days, don’t you know), you recognize … Continue reading

3 Lessons in Storytelling from Apple

Whether you’re a fan of PCs or Macs, there’s one thing everyone can agree on: Steve Jobs could tell a damn good story. Apple has a long history of using story to sell its products. Everyone who was alive at … Continue reading

Twitter: It’s Not About Your Number of Followers

It’s about the conversation. It’s easy, when you first get on Twitter, to obsess over the number of followers you have. I know I did. But it’s pointless. Why? Because your number of followers doesn’t necessarily have anything to do … Continue reading

E-newsletter Management, Networking, Helping People Help You and Marketing Mats. – the Weekly Round-up, August 10, 2012

The Art of Making Things Easier: I just took a live Skillshare class with Scott Britton this past week, where I learned a lot of productivity hacks. His blog is also extremely useful. In this post, Scott illustrates how to … Continue reading

7 Tools You Should Have in Your Networking Swiss Army Knife

Most people think of networking as going to events to meet strangers and leaving with a bunch of business cards taking up space in their wallet. That’s the first part – the preliminary part. But it’s not really networking. What … Continue reading

Branding Police at the London Olympics: Unfair to Small Businesses

Ah, the Olympics. I love watching me some gymnastics, swimming and track (no offense to other sports – these are just the main ones I like watching). But as much as I love watching the Olympics, I don’t think that … Continue reading

How a Potential PR Disaster Was Turned into a Success – Reframing the Story

If there’s one thing I really admire, it’s folks who can take something that really should be a PR disaster and using their creativity, spin it into marketing gold. My favorite example? The Bronx Zoo Cobra. In March of 2011, … Continue reading

Does This Poster Make You Want to Drink This Beer?

I don’t drink beer. I put it down to having a VERY sweet sweet tooth. Because the taste has never appealed to me, no beer ad would probably ever make me want to drink it, so I’m throwing this out … Continue reading

Turning a Sale into an Upsell: 3 Lessons From a Mom and Pop Shop

How a Mom and Pop Shop Got My Friend to Spend Three Times What She Intended So a friend (no, not a “friend,” i.e., me*, an actual friend) had a rough day at work, and decided, on her way home, … Continue reading

Great Speakers, Muppets, Twitter Branding and the Costanza Principle: The Weekly Round-Up, June 22 I went to a few talks at Claudia Chan’s S.H.E. Summit and heard Bryn Johnson’s talk on networking. It was fantastic – informative, authentic and entertaining. And she loves the Muppets. She is also super-friendly and practices what she … Continue reading

15 (Mostly) Free Ways to Successfully Market Your E-book

With all the opportunities in self-publishing these days, it’s like every other person has written an e-book. So I thought I’d put together a quick list of marketing tips. Give your e-book a title that explains what the book will … Continue reading

(Belated) Weekly Round-Up, May 28 – June 1

Yes, here is the belated weekly round-up. I’m happy to say that client work came up and made things a little busier than usual:-)   The Difference Between “Money Work” and “Busy Work” – I’m almost finished reading Chris Guillebeau’s … Continue reading

Throw Out a Good Tagline and Reel ‘Em In

  “Sometimes a Little Prick is a Good Thing.” Last Wednesday, I subbed for a friend at a BNI chapter meeting.  Business Networking International is a formal networking association with chapters around the world. One of the things that BNI … Continue reading

Weekly Round-Up, May 21 – May 25: Multitasking, Networking and Habits

Interesting articles I came across on the web this week: Layering: Multitasking That Actually Works: By this time, we’ve all read about how multitasking isn’t really multitasking but switch-tasking and not terribly productive, etc.  This article combines different tasks where … Continue reading

Features vs. Benefits: Always Connect the Dots for Your Potential Customers

Last weekend I gave a talk on marketing for holistic health practitioners. While I focused the talk towards HHP’s, several of the principles apply regardless of what type of business you run. The main one? Never assume that your potential … Continue reading

Weekly Round-up, May 14 – 18

Some interesting articles and posts I came across this week: Uncover and Manipulate Your Triggers to Optimize Your Work and Life  – Especially good for folks who own their own businesses/work from home (meaning more control over environment and schedule) … Continue reading

Weekly Round-Up

Some interesting articles and stories I came across this past week: The 13-year-old CEO Who Invented a Cure for Hiccups – I guess it shouldn’t be a surprise that CEO’s are following the trend of all other occupations, with the … Continue reading

The Freedom of Limits

It sounds paradoxical, but there is a freedom and even a power that can come from setting limits. I discovered this after I started working with Ari Meisel. Ari is officially self-titled an “Achievement Architect.” He helps people achieve things … Continue reading

Is Your Business a “Benchmark Brand?”

Are you brand loyal? Think hard about this one: Do you buy a particular brand of anything because you consciously like it and choose it, or just out of habit, or because you/your family/your friends have always used it? I … Continue reading

Don’t Say What You Do – Say What You Can Do For Your Clients

I was at a marketing seminar recently where we were told that the amount of time we have to make an impression on a potential customer coming across our website is literally the blink of an eye (yes, she actually … Continue reading

Make Sure the Marketing Plan Fits the Product

I recently volunteered to assist with marketing for a theatre group that has an event coming up in about a month. While brainstorming during a conference call, one of the other volunteers suggested doing some behind the scenes videos. I … Continue reading

Technology Isn’t Going Anywhere (Except Forward): Don’t Get Left Behind

I was talking to a potential client who needed help marketing a mobile app for hotels, or, more to the point, a mobile app for hotel customers that hotels can offer. It allows the customer to check in and out, … Continue reading

Are You Designing Your Online Presence with Mobile Technology in Mind?

Though I’m a writer, I can’t ignore the fact that when it comes to marketing, writing is only half the job. I can write the most brilliant copy, but if it’s not easily accessible, it may as well be lining … Continue reading

The “Small” in Small Business: Use it to Your Advantage

Recent story from a fellow small business owner: He is a subscriber to a certain service that gives him the ability to write and distribute press releases. He has been a package subscriber for about three months and hasn’t been … Continue reading

The Best Use of Twitter by a Small Business: The Big Gay Ice Cream Shop

  I think this might be the most brilliant use of Twitter by a business owner that I’ve seen. The Big Gay Ice Cream Shop was once The Big Gay Ice Cream Truck (the truck still exists, but doesn’t roam … Continue reading

Starting a Business? Make Sure That Your Target Market Can Pay You

It seems obvious that a business owner should be interested in doing business with people who can pay him or her, but it’s amazing how many business owners think they’ve found the perfect service or product for the perfect target … Continue reading

What Problem Are You Solving?

If you follow me on Twitter, you may remember this article on Wisebread that I tweeted: My Pumpkin Lady’s Secret to Business Success. In it, the author describes that the reason why the “pumpkin lady” at her farmers’ market was … Continue reading

The Survey Says…Customers Need Incentives to Answer Them

How many times, when you’ve been at work on something on the web, have you brushed aside those annoying little boxes that pop-up requesting “just 5 minutes of your time” to fill out a survey that will supposedly help provide … Continue reading

How to Contact People You Don’t Know Personally on Linked In

As someone who is a LION (Linked In Open Networker) meaning that pretty much anyone can see my profile and request me to join their network, I’m often astonished at how many people whom I’ve never met request me and: … Continue reading

Network Where You Feel Most Comfortable

I was talking to a client recently, a woman who just started up her own business, and we were talking about her dislike of networking and tooting her own horn. I don’t blame her. I’m kind of shy myself, and … Continue reading

Online or Offline, Go Where Your Target Market Hangs Out (AKA Ignore Social Media at Your Peril)

Once upon a time perhaps five or six years ago, in a place not too far from here, I worked for a subscriber-based theater company. Now, if you know anything about theater companies, you may be aware of these three … Continue reading

The Business Card: Not Dead Yet, So Make It Count

Lately, it seems like everyone wants to jump on the bandwagon to declare something dead. The resume (depends on the situation), e-mail (huh?) and the business card are just a few examples. Let’s just look at the business card for … Continue reading

What’s in a (Business) Name? Tips for Naming Your Business

Starting your own business? I bet you’re thinking of a name, if you don’t have one already. Some tips for choosing a name for your business:   Make sure that no one else already has that name (even if it’s … Continue reading

Networking: When in Doubt, Don’t Let It Out

We’ve all had moments of foot-in-mouth-itis, where we’ve said the wrong thing at the wrong time. The worst place that this disease can strike you is when you’re at a networking function. I was at a networking event a couple … Continue reading

How a Business Owner Made an Unconventional Location Her Best Advertisement

Even in the current economy, the one thing that hasn’t changed for brick-and-mortar businesses is the old real estate mantra of “location, location, location.” In the case of one business owner, her unusual location is not only good business, it … Continue reading

Why You Should Include Your Photo on Your Linked In Profile

One day while I was browsing the various marketing/copywriting groups I belong to on Linked In, I came across the following post: “Would you do business with an individual who has NO photo on [sic] LinkedIn profile? Yes/No? Please let … Continue reading