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@PaulChato ha! Thanks Paul. I write in fear of you unsubscribing :) Glad to hear it resonated. This is one of my mantras for 2014.
3 weeks, 1 day ago on Stop Marketing, Start Selling
@JoelUngar Domenic said their customers have the same reaction. At first they can't believe their getting the call, but once they overcome the shock they're very open with their impressions. The program has been so successful their outbound call center is growing rapidly (which is very unusual for a pizza chain to even have an outbound call center.)
3 weeks, 4 days ago on Pizza Nova: Always About Quality
@JoelUngar agreed. Pizza Nova has a very focused approach. My favorite part is the feedback loop. It's one thing to say you're delivering quality, but it's another thing to have it verified. The feedback loop is a powerful innovation.
@JoelUngar glad to hear the article resonated Joel. I agree, the story is in the results.
1 month ago on Another Way To Say “One Stop Shop”
@Raleigh Leslie Thanks for sharing Raleigh. I have found with clear guidelines and strict moderation the spam issue can be managed. We have significantly curbed the Sticky Branding group's spam problem since I wrote this article. Yes, the group still receives a lot of blog submissions, but they're all filtered into the promotions tab. The engaged users have noticed the change, and adhere to the policy. Other users have modified their behavior, and the problem users get whittled out of the group. I'm largely of the opinion that the LinkedIn Spam issues fall to the group owners. It's their choice whether it's going to be a problem or not.
1 month ago on LinkedIn Groups: Cans of Spam
@JoelUngar Thanks Joel. I was drinking from the referral Kool Aid forever too, but an analysis of a client's business showed me the underside. They're not achieving their potential, because they're not reaching beyond a select audience of referrals. It was an eye opener.
1 month, 1 week ago on The Downside of Word of Mouth Marketing
@Complex2Clear thanks Paul! Happy New Year to you too. Building an effective metrics system takes time and discipline. Capturing the data is one thing, but using it is where the rubber hits the road. Choose one to three metrics to start with and work to institutionalize them. Once you're gaining value from those metrics you can add or adjust them.
2 months ago on 6 Brand Metrics To Drive Sales
@Opal Gamble thanks Opal! It will save me a cold call :)
2 months, 3 weeks ago on I Hate Cold Calling, But I Still Do It
@Complex2Clear Thanks Paul. Great point. You can't grow a brand without focus and sacrifice.
2 months, 4 weeks ago on Alpha Poly Packaging: Easy In, Impossible Out
@Janet Huey it's a techie phrase, but it fits :)
4 months ago on Skura Corporation: Overcoming A Paradigm Shift
@Paul Emond Thanks Paul. You have a great story to share, and it's impressive to see how Versature is growing. Vonage demonstrated that slick marketing isn't enough. It takes a company with a clear commitment to the technology, customer service and owning the category to win. Great job.
5 months ago on Challenging Giants
@Complex2Clear Thanks Paul. Good think the Sticky Branding Stories are for mid-market, private companies vs. the faceless monoliths :)
You raise a very valid point. The way a mid-market grows a brand and a big company maintains a brand are very different. A business owner has to make purposeful investments to challenge the status quo to stand out and differentiate the company. Where as a big brand works to control input costs and maintain the status quo as the market leader.
Mike's approach to staffing is inline with a mid-market company challenging the faceless brand model of the big box retailers. And it works so well that the big boxes avoid entering his territory, because he has such a strong presence and community engagement.
5 months, 3 weeks ago on The Personal Touch Counts
@Debbie Ouellet Thanks Debbie. That's a great question. It can lead in so many directions. Do you have a favourite story you've received from the question?
6 months ago on Purdy’s Chocolates: A Culture Of Curiosity
@Complex2Clear Thanks Paul. I definitely agree with your second point. I focus on 4-5 streams at a time. I can't handle much more than that. Since time and budget is limited, I have to be very selective where I invest my time to deliver the best lead generation results.
6 months ago on 100 Ways To Generate 1 Customer
@PaulChato every company has the ability to differentiate and create a unique brand. The company may not be able to differentiate on the products/services they sell, but they can differentiate on their personality and point of view.
An interesting Toronto example in the news right now is Honest Ed's. You can get the same products at any Wal-Mart or Dollar Store, but Honest Ed's is an experience unto iteself. From the gaudiness of the storefront, to their turkey drive, to how their founder was a showman.
Growing a unique brand is a choice. Some companies make that choice and take the necessary risks, and other's don't and wind up being zombies (brains!!!)
7 months, 3 weeks ago on Showcase Your Brand Personality
@Complex2Clear thanks Paul. You raise an interesting point. It's like companies are getting caught up in perpetual navel gazing, and losing sight of what's really important -- their customers.
7 months, 3 weeks ago on The Central Group: It’s Not What You Sell. It’s What You Deliver
@jbarnet thanks Jim. A big part of DECO's success is location. Alberta has the 2nd highest incidents per capita of windshield damage in North America. They are only slightly behind Denver. In Ontario a driver may go years without a chip or cracked windshield, but in Alberta you're lucky to go 3 months unscathed.
This high frequency of incidents means consumers in Western Canada value convenience. I spoke with a colleague in Edmonton, and she loved that she could get her windshield repaired while grocery shopping.
As you point out, it's about servicing your ideal customer (and knowing what your ideal customer needs).
8 months ago on DECO Windshield Repair: First They Ignore You, Then You Win
@Colin Joseph thanks Colin
8 months, 1 week ago on DECO Windshield Repair: First They Ignore You, Then You Win
@Ed Ross thanks Ed. You raise a very valid point. Education builds upon itself, and we definitely don't forget the history.
Are you finding any institutions or researchers that are re-evaluating the sales reserach, and updating it for 2013? I am seeing some activity from Cranfiled School of Management in the UK, which was featured in the Harvard Business Review in 2010.
But in general, the research seems stunted and slow to adapt to the major structural forces brought on by the major advances in globalization, telecommunications and social media over the past decade.
8 months, 3 weeks ago on Sales Training Programs Are Outdated
@jbarnet I dunno Jim. I'm pretty sure T-Rex is a raspberry aficionado. Those short arms and big mouth made it genetically predisposed to raspberry greatness.
I agree with you. Brand trumps distribution. If a sales person doesn't have the right value proposition, it doesn't matter how they introduce their services.
I also think you're pointing out the heart of the cold calling debate. The firms that are drawn to this form of lead generation are lacking a well defined value proposition. They need to get in front of a prospect and pontificate, because nothing else is working.
So I claim, "voice of reason." :)
9 months ago on Cold Calling Is Still Dead