Entrepreneur. Blogger. Analyst. Geek. Half Greek. Woman :-p
Marriage as an institution is the creation of a patriarchal and sexist system. The definition of 'one state' of permitted partnership is illogical. In general, partnerships, are not going out of style (indeed we need them to produce and raise children in most cases). Committed relationships (not necessarily the same thing) are also not. But one man, one woman and fidelity, obedience etc for 60 years, is unrealistic and not suited to today's world. It is a pity therefore that we continue to hammer home to our children through Disney and popular culture, that marriage is the ideal state. Better to support choice and respect for all parties in the configurations they choose to adopt.
10 months, 4 weeks ago on Has Marriage Become Obsolete?
@RichGallagher You mean a great disciple... :) All our consultants are fantastic teachers ;-) @mikemccormac
1 year, 1 month ago on My Secret Sales Weapon
Agreed. Any control and coercion make clients run in the opposite direction. https://www.investment-impact.com/news/day-217-joy-sales
There is a very strong need for humans to identify and be familiar with a brand, a service or the person standing in front of them. It’s what - for all marketing bleats on about price, promotion, placement and product - is the elusive ingredient that converts users and clients into advocates and enthusiasts. Personally, I would take advocates over clients any day. Why?
Scenario 1: Ten clients
No. of Clients (e.g. 10) x No. of products bought (e.g. 1) x price of products (e.g. $1) = $10
Scenario 2: Ten advocates
No. of Advocates (real enthusiasts) (e.g. 10) x No. of people advocated over lifetime (50+) x No of potential clients in that circle e.g. 10 % x No. of products bought (e.g. 1) x price of products (e.g. $1) = $50
We assume that advocates have a regular number of contacts or friends; that may be as low as 10 or as high as 1000....but on average an enthusiast may tell his or her whole circle; and on facebook, twitter and google plus, that means a powerful amount of referrals.
Getting advocates for your business is tricky. It usually requires superb customer/user experience which in turn requires eﬀort, care and money. But more than that, it also requires that your business and brand contains emotion - because at the basest level, humans are unable to feel empathy without also feeling emotion.
1 year, 2 months ago on Avoid Being the Business Booty Call
I've watched this comment thread grow with some great insightful posts but also distaste as posts go past equating looks to so called 'geek' status and or even some who set themselves apart as the geeks (now apparently vastly superior) vs. the cool/popular stuck-in-high-school students.
The bottom line. There's nothing wrong with calling yourself a geek or dead sexy for that matter. But there is something wrong in having to boost your ego by making a relative superior comparison to others. The tribal aspect of our nature to belong, is human for sure. So we can glory in our self definitions. But geek or not, what is truly attractive is that people are comfortable with themselves. That can apply to the sportos, the motorheads,geeks, sluts, bloods, waistoids, dweebies, dickheads... (and I strongly advise seeing Ferris Bueller's day off again which proves the point admirably).
1 year, 2 months ago on There’s Something Dead Sexy About a Geek
@caroljsroth Sure. But I still have every compassion for our humanity....especially when accompanied by humility & honesty.
1 year, 2 months ago on Calling BS on Doing Your Best
@RedheadWriting @RobertBajak Of course you may...but I don't believe in binary child-adult. And certainly not in emotional intelligence. One doesn't simply switch at a given moment despite what the State would have you believe. Plenty of people are grown up without self-awareness and even more perhaps self-aware in one facet and complete denial about others. Your (One's) whole life is about evolution. Part of the fun is uncovering pockets of denial - especially when you get the whole eureka moment ;-)
There's another common aspect to geekdom - exclusion from the herd tends to breed insecurity massive ego and it's flip side jealousy/resentment. Geeks who have gone through the revolution to get past this and accept themselves and others for who they are, I would agree - tremendously sexy! Those who retain a legacy of their insecure inner child, not so sexy...
Best is not absolute. Doing your best to your capacity before insecurity of constant rejection kicks in may be 50 critical emails for one person and 1000 for another - moreover this might even be the same person on two different days/time periods in two different state of minds. Let's be honest, there are always other avenues left to pursue for any endeavor. So the only point here is not to say 'I did my best' but to say ' I made as much effort as I was willing to invest in that particular thing.' thus taking responsibility for the consequences of giving up. And if someone tells me that , I'm okay with it.
@NatalieBlatnick Hi Natalie, I mentioned your campaign on my blog - so feel free to participate in the discussion @ https://www.investment-impact.com/news/day-206-how-get-your-email-opened
As to your question - oh how easy it is to come with criticism and no solution! Our over-riding policy is personlisation and positive emotional response to communication (and we're a rebel brand so it's not as if we are terribly conservative!) Online noise will/has become so deafening, that even segmented push campaigns are far less effective than before - and we predict will become totally ignored by the majority. My suggestions would be to start with granular segmentation of your target markets and tailor accordingly. If you still wanted the WTF campaign, it may not have been suitable for all.
For us (EU), most noticeably, we get different responses from different cultures (am sure this may also apply within the US as different States also have different attitudes). For example a suggestion from our community says that in Italy 'We want you to delete this email you you think it can't help (build you business/reduce your costs etc).' the reason being that people there would be surprised enough by the invitation to delete to open the email.
Whilst *you* say that WTF raises eyebrows, I am British - and for me it was more than eyebrow raising (although I do like being challenged!) and for some, might provoke the reaction 'ignorant and crass'. The question is, will it lead more people to think that you are unprofessional and ignorant than it will gain you profitable customers! Only you can know.
NB. If your campaigns were regularly going to be shocking, I would think about aligning your brand more with your communications. With Harley Davidson one expects and applauds the shock factor. Even when they go very far with their advertising to the extent of 'Thou shalt have no other gods above me' it is not out of keeping with their image, but is still very daring.
1 year, 2 months ago on How to Write Email Subject Lines and the WTF Case Study
NatalieBlatnick Natalie, interesting and daring campaign. You open yourself up to feedback which is good. I agree with you that polarizing is better than middle of the road blah, but would suggest that your campaign should have been in line with your brand personality. Your website represents a completely mainstream proposition and that means your campaign wasn't in keeping with your company image. Congratulations anyway on taking a jump. All too rare in these days.
1 year, 3 months ago on How to Write Email Subject Lines and the WTF Case Study
caroljsroth Yes and No. On the whole time is money issue: https://www.investment-impact.com/news/day-127-youre-wrong-mr-franklin (feel free to erase it after).
1 year, 4 months ago on On Branding: Is Branding Useless for Service Providers?
caroljsrothLiz Radzickknowlersmoneydecisions I think time and money are two different things. Time input is exceedingly valuable to clarify your thoughts and gut feel around your brand personality (no one is saying that you have to stop all other activity); whereas money paid to someone else to define your brand is a waste.
I feel that you mistake brand for brand logo, tagline and colors. Your brand is not your 'branding'! These are important and sure, spending money on them may be necessary in the final analysis. But doing a logo is supposed to represent what you already know, not define it for you. That's why the company you mention wasted so much money, because they had no idea of their brand so they spent a lot of money on trying to find themselves with a branding exercise.
So basically I would advise not spending ANY money until you know in your gut how you want to be perceived by your clients. It's the amount of thought that is important not the amount of money you put in.Once you know your what your brand represents, it is soooo very easy to pick out images from corbis/istock or get a designer to a logo it for 1000 dollars or less (I know some who work online) - because you have a very good idea of what you want but lack the graphic skills to draw/design it.
Carol has a very strong brand personality (in effect she is her brand) without the need even for a logo. She sits in the Explorer/Ruler archetype categories I think - characteristics - innovative, edgy, enterprising, powerful, although I haven't done an analysis on her. Of course I don't know the woman behind the brand. And she may not be the same - but I feel not! You can be a strong brand also without a logo, but I think branding is useful to reinforce the brand (although in the case you mention it appeared to undermine it!).
Although I am loathe to hijack blog comments to tout business (it feels quite cheap - especially on Carol's excellent site - and for an opinion which seems to contradicts her own), we do actually have a free download on this very subject (it's called Creating Brand Love). You can contact me privately as I think we've said enough in the comment section!
Good luck figuring out who you want to be!
I truly believe that all companies will have a personality, because they all have certain ways of working and are made up of people! And I believe that this is applicable whether they are product or service providers.
The worst case is that their personality is bland - forgettable - or even has the negative traits we never like to see mirrored. What we buy - both products and services is an extension of ourselves and how we identify with the world. And it's becoming more important as online/offline noise clamors for our attention. The facelessness of the internet makes it very important for companies to demonstrate the personality behind the service.
I like the sound of a Cali Dude ;-)
Interesting point of view based on the premise that brand refers to logo, tag line and color. But these are simply the outward signals of an internal company personality, an archetype which resonates with the customer instilling a sense of familiarity to mirror facets of their own personality or aspirations.
No one loves Apple because they're called Apple or their logo is white, or even that their tagline is 'Think Different'. However the Apple is a basic symbol of creativity (think womb), a representation of knowledge (garden of Eden) and Apple is emblematic of the powerful magic of predicting the future. A truly powerful Sage brand if ever there was one, 'Gandalf' at his finest. And branding in this sense will help you stick out from the crowd. If you want a guest blog on this topic, we'd be happy to oblige.