Saturday, November 20, 2010

Sparkly Stuff under the Tree

Could it be a diamond?

Jewelers Optimistic About Upcoming Holidays

How will the holiday season be for jewelers this year? Better than expected due to the rising popularity of silver and consumers' penchant for gifts of enduring value, according to Buxbaum Jewelry Advisors.

In a news release issued last week, Buxbaum President Stevan Buxbaum said that today's consumers have an increasing appreciation for items that offer enduring value, unlike "throwaway" imports or nearly instantly obsolete electronics.

"People are using their hard-earned money to buy fewer items," he said. "The dramatic increase in the price of gold has not been lost on them. So there is more respect today for the intrinsic value of jewelry, and that is helpful for jewelers."

But the battle for customers' dollars this holiday season will be fierce, Buxbaum adds. In order to compete, independents need to offer deals but also emphasize their knowledge, experience and customer service. During the holiday season, retailers need to leverage the relationships forged from bridal sales made throughout the year.

"This year, jewelers should promote more than ever," Buxbaum said. "After all, we are already starting to see a barrage of aggressive promotion from department stores, the large chains like Zale and the warehouse stores like Costco and B.J.'s Wholesale Club, which have been doing big business in jewelry lately. The reality is that the promotional landscape will be extremely robust. If you do not join the fray, you will be left behind."

Product-wise, he said silver and beads would be popular in 2010, noting that many jewelers already have wisely expanded their price points with silver. Retailers are offering higher-priced silver products, such as diamond-studded silver bracelets, as well as new products such as Pandora's silver and silver-core Murano-glass beads, which allow consumers flexibility in how much they spend.

"This will be the year of silver and the year of the bead, with many consumers expected to put together their own bracelets," he said. "Maybe dad buys mom the bracelet wire along with a $200 diamond-inset bead that goes with it, and the kids each buy her a $25 or a $50 bead. The next thing you know, mom has five or six beads, and she can go buy herself a bead a month later. It is clever and gives people control over cost."

Buxbaum Jewelry Advisors is comprised of a team of jewelry professionals who have provided financial solutions to retailers and wholesalers for more than 20 years. It is an affiliate of Agoura Hills, Calif.-based Buxbaum Group, a liquidator of consumer products and appraiser of retail and wholesale inventories.

(Source: National Jeweler, 11/12/10)

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Do you know your "generations"?

from Mediapost recently:

Segments And Shifts

In the current marketplace maelstrom, it's a challenge to identify the opportunities from the pitfalls. A natural reaction to chaos is to develop a structured framework that takes messy markets and sweeps them into tidy little piles or segments. Market segmentation is a terrific antidote to the feeling that you can't quite seem to get your arms around something, and dividing the 300 million members of the U.S. population into generational units is a great place to start. According to the work of Howe & Strauss, the six current generations within the U.S. and their birth years are:

The GI Generation: 1901-1924
The Silent Generation: 1925-1942
The Boom Generation (Boomers): 1943-1960
Generation X: 1961-1981
The Millennials (a/k/a Gen Y): 1982-2004, and
The Homeland Generation: 2005-????

The great news is that dividing the entire marketplace into these six distinct and addressable segments is really helpful. Generations share characteristics and attitudes that make them easier to communicate with as well as target.

Generations are not monolithic. My first statistics professor liked to say that while you can accurately describe a lake as having an average depth of three feet, a six-foot man trying to cross it would surely need to swim at some point. There are subtle nuances within a generation that, thankfully, make it necessary to abandon averages and dive into the variation.

The largest shift that we've witnessed within Gen Y is an accelerated use of mobile. In our recent syndicated research on Back to School shopping, we were amazed to see that high school students were twice as likely to have been aware of summer mobile marketing campaigns than college students. They were also much more comfortable making a purchase on their mobile device based on these campaigns.

Just as social networking hit early members of Gen Y at an opportune and impressionable time, mobile capabilities are hitting later members of Gen Y at the early onset of their marketplace consciousness. While Facebook is by no means under siege from any current competitor, its long-term prospects depend entirely upon its ability to get in front of an intra-generational shift to the mobile web.

Another difference between early and late members of Gen Y presented itself to us in the past week as we were studying data that we had collected both before and after the mid-term election on Gen Y's participation and engagement. While political analysis focuses on participation amongst those aged 18+ in general and those registered to vote in particular, we conducted a nearly identical survey among a representative sample of 1,000 members of Gen Y that had reached voting age as well as among more than 300 kids aged 13-17, probing their thoughts on the political landscape.

Here, too, we found a fascinating intra-generational inversion. In answer to the question, "In general, do you approve or disapprove of the job that Barack Obama is doing as president?," a slight majority of Collegians (51%) approved of Obama's job performance, compared to slightly more than a third (35%) of high school students. Similarly, in answer to the question "Do you generally approve or disapprove of the job that Barack Obama is doing in handling the economy?," only two-thirds as many high school students (27%) than collegians (41%) approved of Obama's economic stewardship.

What's driving these differences is twofold: for high school-aged members of Gen Y, the election of president Obama was a pseudo-event, witnessed on the web and on TV. For those members of Gen Y aged 18 and older in 2008, the Obama campaign was a visceral activity in which they were actively involved. While this heightened level of involvement has made it that much harder for older members of Gen Y to set aside their dreams of hope and change, their disappointment with how little things have changed in the past two years was evident in their lack of participation at the polls.

Another important consideration is that younger members of Gen Y still live at home and are therefore much more influenced by how their parents think and feel. While we can see a slight shift to the right between early versus late members of Gen Y, intra-generational differences quickly evaporated across a number of other issues such as what issues they found most important to them, where they seek out information and how they share that information with others.

One tempting reaction to variance within a generation is to "call a new generation"; however, identifying differences between early versus later members of Gen Y is in no way a repudiation of the integrity of the generational theory that declares those born between 1982 and 2004 to be a distinct unit. In the end, efforts to divide the world into smaller and smaller addressable segments based on common characteristics are an imprecise art and, while one can always find reasons to re-draw the lines on the generational map, moving the goalposts doesn't serve us well as we attempt to understand the markets that we serve.

What is helpful for us as marketers is to understand that new technologies as well as critical events will shape and sometimes redirect the flow of the generational stream. Our jobs would be a lot less interesting if it were otherwise ...

Dan Coates is president of Ypulse, a leading authority on tween, teen, college and young adult insights for marketing, brand and media professionals, providing news, commentary, events, research and strategy. A veteran opinionista, Dan and his Ypulse colleagues tweet an endless stream of Gen Y news, factoids and insights at and can be contacted via email at You can also reach him here.

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From my Sales Tip Archives:

Daily Sales Tip: Customer Relationships are Recession Busters

Your customers are your personal recession buster -- but only if you focus on them more completely, deeply and consistently than ever.

Think about it this way -- your customers are the source of all revenue for your organization; your customers write your paycheck. It makes sense to build and deepen your relationships with them always, but that is never more true than in times where they are buying less and probably distracted by the economy themselves.

Your customers are looking for new solutions. Your customers want help. Your customers need you.

Five Ideas
Here are five ways you can focus on deepening your relationships with your customers, starting right now.

Get in touch. Stop by, make a call, send a handwritten note, send an email (in that order of priority -- the further up this list the more valuable the contact will be). Let them know you care, take the effort to be connected.

Stay in touch. Don't make this contact a one-time event but part of an ongoing process of staying in touch, connected and at the top of mind for your customer.

Ask how you can help them. No strings and no qualifiers. Do you appreciate it when someone offers to help you with something? So will your customers, even if they don't take you up on the offer.

Educate them. Send an article, share an idea. After you know how you can help or what their challenges are, it will be easier to determine the best things to share based on their interests and needs.

Focus on serving, not selling. People buy from those they like, trust and respect. Sales will come. Focus on the person, building the relationship and serving them.

These are just five ideas -- you probably can come up with 55 more. Your challenge is to find ways to be relevant, helpful and available to your customers.

Source: Business consultant/trainer Kevin Eikenberry (

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Friday, November 19, 2010

Friday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Click & Read:

by Karl Greenberg
"It allows us to tell a deeper story you couldn't tell with a brochure," Audi's Jeri Ward tells Marketing Daily. "We have seen study after study that our customers are Internet savvy and technology-rich so communicating about this vehicle on platforms like iPad hits the sweet spot." ...Read the whole story >>
by Tanya Irwin
There is a "clear disconnect" in how pharma companies communicate with their patients, Accenture's Tom Schwenger says. "Companies need to reevaluate their marketing campaigns to ensure they are integrated across all patient touch-points and channels to meet customer demand for health solutions, increase trust and brand loyalty and enhance customer perceptions." ...Read the whole story >>
by Karlene Lukovitz
One current emphasis is on reviving Progresso soup growth -- in part through "taste-focused" consumer marketing, such as the new "You Gotta Taste This Soup" TV campaign showing soup lovers calling Progresso's soup kitchen via soup-can phones. Beefed-up Facebook and other social media efforts, and a recent in-store sampling program, also helped drive a 3% increase in the soup brand's retail sales during the 13 weeks ending Oct. 30. ...Read the whole story >>
by Aaron Baar
Social media are more relationship based. Therefore, they need much more nurturing and personalization than other approaches. "You have to abandon the corporate mentality and approach and think of it as a person and interact with them as a person," Firefly Millward Brown's Rob Hernandez says. "You've got to be interesting and be relevant, with a personal connection with [consumers]." ...Read the whole story >>
by Karl Greenberg
Korean Air marketer Emily Cho was in New York on Thursday to bend an ear about the carrier's first global ad push since 2007. Cho, officially general manager, integrated marketing communications, is also the daughter of Korean Air chairman and CEO Yang Ho Cho. She was also former account executive at the airline's Korea-based ad agency HS Ad. ...Read the whole story >>

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No, you are not Average....

No one is anymore.

From this week:

Why You Can No Longer Sell to the Average American Household

New Census Data Finds No Majority in Household Types but Hints at Housing Growth to Come

What will finally drive some growth in the housing industry? It might be nothing more dramatic than a release of demand that's been pent-up since the start of the recession.

Last week the Census Bureau published results from a March survey that found 117.5 million households in the U.S., up a mere 0.3% from 2009. That's about one-third the average annual increase over the past decade. Coming on the heels of an equally meager increase of 400,000 from 2008 to 2009, this suggests a coming wave of new households once the economy loosens.

As of March, 12 million American families are living with 21 million of their adult children, a record high. One fourth of those "kids" are age 25 or older. As the economy improves, most of these adult children will probably (hopefully?) leave the nest and jump start the housing market's recovery.

Other noteworthy trends
The fraction of households that are married couples with children under age 18 is edging ever closer to just one in five households. The number of U.S. married couples with children has not changed in over 40 years. Now, as in 1967, there are 24.6 million of them.

One-person households, at 31.4 million, are significantly more numerous than married couples with children and now make up 27% of all households. The reason: People who live alone (most of whom are women) have more than tripled since 1967, while married couples with children have stagnated. Another reason is the aging population: The average age of people who live alone is 56.6 years old, and among ages 65 or older, almost half of all households (45%) are single individuals.

The number of households in the U.S. by age and type
U.S. Census Bureau
The number of households in the U.S. by age and type (in thousands)

The chart above shows just how segmented U.S. households are by age and type of households. The average American household no longer exists. Even the largest household type, married with no children under age 18 living at home is only 29% of households. All married couples, which used to be the vast majority of households has slipped for the first time to a minority position of only 49.7 percent.

Non-family households with more than one person are almost all made up of two so far unrelated people, some of whom are gay or lesbian couples. They are now just 6% of households, but may diminish if same-sex marriage become more common.

The chart below shows graphically just how segmented US households have become.

Married couples are now less than half of all households in the U.S.
U.S. Census Bureau
Married couples are now less than half of all households in the U.S.

Peter Francese is the founder of American Demographics magazine and is Ogilvy & Mather's demographic-trends analyst.

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What Are You Waiting For?

One thing I've learned from my years in the sales world... If you wait for success, it will never find you. Take the action steps and responsibility for yourself...

from my email:

Daily Sales Tip: Master the Critical Skills

If you're going to sell more every year, you need to get better every year. Let's look at this a different way. If what you are currently doing would produce the results you are looking for, the results should have already shown up.

So what skills should you focus on improving? Start by honestly answering a few of these questions:

-- How much preparation are you putting into each call?
-- Are the questions you ask thought-provoking or mind-numbing?
-- Do your ideas have value for the prospect or do you find yourself just pitching the "latest" widget from the factory?
-- When was the last time you got feedback on your presentation skills?
-- What are the top three obstacles prospects throw at you?
-- How do you clearly and concisely address these obstacles?
-- What are you doing every week to help build better relationships?

It takes courage to admit you could be a better sales rep and confidence to believe you can change. It takes nothing to create excuses.

There is an abundance of sales books, tele-seminars, podcasts, webinars, and sales training programs available today. What are you waiting for?

Source: Sales trainer/consultant Tim Wackel

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Thursday, November 18, 2010

Thursday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Click & Read:

by Karlene Lukovitz
"From an audience standpoint, it's a very competitive time slot, so it will be interesting to see how the ["Undercover Boss"] ratings turn out," Tony Pace, SVP and CMO of the Subway Franchisee Advertising Fund Trust, tells Marketing Daily. On the other hand, CBS will be promoting the show during its own football game coverage earlier in the day -- and being on three different networks simultaneously in prime time would probably sound like a "good problem" to most brands. ...Read the whole story >>
by Karl Greenberg
The more important vehicles getting rolled onto the stage at the show are Nissan's new Quest minivan (Nissan will have a Quest Kids' Fun Zone); Chevrolet Camaro and Volkswagen EOS convertible. And Fiat, whose Chrysler LLC division this week announced a roster of dealers that will sell the Italian brand, is returning to the auto show for the first time in a quarter of a century to show off its Fiat 500-Cinquecento sub-compact. ...Read the whole story >>
by Sarah Mahoney
"We're really seeing the return of the shopper," Ted Vaughan, a partner in BDO's retail and consumer product practice, tells Marketing Daily. "Certainly, there's not going to be an immediate return to pre-recession shopping levels. But we are seeing these slight improvements year over year." ...Read the whole story >>
by Tanya Irwin
Stuart Greif, vice president of the travel practice at J.D. Power and Associates, says of Enterprise: "They actually perform at the top of all six measures that we look at across the rental car customer's experience. Three of their four brands are among the top rankings and clearly that overall management approach seems to have some consistency in terms of performance." ...Read the whole story >>
by Karl Greenberg
"The process of working out the deal is the primary indicator of whether new-vehicle buyers have a satisfactory purchase experience," said Jon Osborn, director of automotive research at J.D. Power and Associates. It is particularly important for retailers to make this process as efficient and collaborative as possible, given its importance to overall satisfaction." ...Read the whole story >>

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The Main Reason I Eat in the Bar

Bratty kids.

Screaming kids.

Out of control kids.

All of my kids are over 21 now.

So we eat where you have to be 21+.

When the grand-kids arrive, we'll go back to the family room.

Families Return to Restaurants

Families with kids visited restaurants in slightly greater numbers this summer, ending a three-year downward trend, the NPD Group said last week.

For the August-ended quarter, restaurant visits by parties with kids increased 1 percent over the year-ago period, according to the NPD Group's data.

Bonnie Riggs, restaurant-industry analyst for the Chicago-based market research company, said the uptick in restaurant visits suggests that many families have become "recession-weary."

"They need to get out of the house a bit," she said. "(Restaurant dining) is a relatively inexpensive treat compared to taking the family to a sporting event or the theater or to the movies, because that's gotten very costly."

Riggs said the 1-percent rise in restaurant visits by families with kids in the summer followed flat traffic trends in the spring quarter and a 7-percent decline in last year's June-to-August period.

"That's a positive sign, but we have to keep in mind that we are going against very weak trends a year ago," she said.

Even though families with kids have cut back on dining out for much of the past three years, they still represent a sizeable market for the industry, accounting for 14 billion meals and snacks and $70 billion in sales in 2009, according to the NPD Group.

About 36 percent of all visits to restaurants are made by parties with kids, Riggs said. Of those visits, 81 percent are made to quick-service restaurants, 9 percent to family-dining eateries, and 10 percent to casual-dining concepts.

Operators can capitalize on the changing pattern, Riggs suggested, by targeting parties with kids with promotions, especially those that recognize families' financial concerns. For example, she pointed to the "kids-eat-free" promotions that many family-dining chains have offered over the past year.

"I think that has resonated with consumers, because if you look at casual-dining for the same time period they are still struggling in terms of parties with kids," Riggs said.

Riggs warned that municipal regulations, such as restrictions on toys in kids' meals, will be an issue to watch.

San Francisco's Board of Supervisors recently gave final approval to an ordinance that would prohibit the use of toys and other incentives in restaurant kids' meals that fail to meet certain nutritional requirements. Supervisors in the nearby California county of Santa Clara passed a similar measure in April.

(Source: Nation's Restaurant News, 11/10/10)

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New Ad Campaigns

Amy's at it again....

Gaming goes mainstream. With a name like Effen Vodka, you have to expect ads laden with double entendres. Let's launch!

1Kahlúa goes back to its roots of Veracruz, Mexico in a series of "Delicioso" TV and print ads. Mexican actress Ana de la Reguera stars in the TV spots, which are offbeat and entertaining. "Unexpectedly Delicioso" combines things that shouldn't mesh well together, like a radio that's also a toaster, a couch situated in a field or Kahlua combined with dark coffee. See it here. "Spanish Intrigue" proves that anything sounds sexy when said in Spanish. Stapler, shoes and the name Robert are excellent examples. Piano, which sounds the same in Spanish and English, not so much. Watch it here. Print ads, running in Cosmopolitan, InStyle, People, GQ and Esquire, illustrate Kahlua-based drinks alongside ingredients and mixing instructions. See the ads here, here and here. TBWA/Chiat/Day New York created the campaign.

1 You can have your brownie and chocolate-chip cookies -- and eat them, too, in a print campaign for Sugar In The Raw and its zero-calorie sibling, Stevia Extract In The Raw. "It's Only Natural" offers a variation of recipes for cookies, brownies, hot chocolate, apple cider and iced coffee, depending on whether you're watching your weight or splurging. Print ads will run nationally through 2011. The copy is sharp. My favorite is the intro for making brownies: "Cocoa brownies to heal a heart broken by a man who promises it wasn't you, it was him, and by him he means a girl named Stacey Lee. Count the years you dated. If it exceeds five, double the recipe." See ads here, here, here, here and here, created by Mother New York

1Zugara, using its ZugMO motion-capture augmented reality software, launched a fun AR game for Nestlé's Nesquik drink. Remember, you need a webcam to play along. Participants take on the role of new employee at Nesquik's drink factory. The object of the game is to fill the right Nesquik bottle with its matching Nesquik flavor. The higher the level, the harder the game becomes. Players can also post their results to their Facebook profile. Click here to see a demo.

1Activision launched a great TV spot promoting its latest game, "Call of Duty Black Ops," proving that gaming is played by men and women of all ages. Not to mention a pair of celebrities. "There's a soldier in all of us" takes place in a war zone, where women rock machine guns and business attire, a short-order cook packs grease and guns for each hand, Jimmy Kimmel launches a missile and Kobe Bryant keeps cool under pressure. See it here, created by TBWA/Chiat/Day Los Angeles.

1[yellow tail] wine gave me a bird, alright, in a Thanksgiving TV ad called "Gobble it Up." Just not the one I was expecting. The 15-second spot consists of gobbling wine bottles scurrying about until they come together and form a turkey. Only problem is, the first two times I watched the ad, I thought the turkey was giving me the finger. Watch the ad here and let me know if you agree with me. The BurnsGroup created the ad, running on TLC, A&E, TNT, USA, Food Network and TBS.

1Blast Radius created a Twitter campaign and Web site for Movember, a moustache-growing campaign that takes place every November to raise funds and awareness for prostate cancer. culls together a live feed of Movember pictures uploaded to Twitter. Users can browse pictures from a variety of moustache categories, including biker, pornstar, FuManchu, Zappa and Dali, among others. Check out the growth progress, now at the halfway point!

1T-Mobile 4G allows users to video-chat without needing WiFi. Take that, iPhone. "Piggyback" pokes fun at Apple's popular "Mac Vs PC" campaign by showing a T-Mobile user next to an iPhone user, who's carrying the weight of AT&T on his back. He's heavy. The ad, seen here, is running on ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC and TNT. Publicis Seattle created the ad.

1I'm usually quite the fan of double entendres, but these are too much, even for me. EFFEN Vodka launched "Provocatively Premium," a print campaign depicting a bellhop, snow bunny and flight attendant attempting to sound risqué when namedropping EFFEN. "Nothing warms me up like EFFEN by the fire," says the snow bunny. The flight attendant finds "nothing more satisfying than EFFEN on a plane." I bet you saw that coming, though. See the ads here, here and here. Euro RSCG Chicago created the campaign and Starcom handled the media buy.

1Random iPhone App of the week: We're effin sticking with EFFEN Vodka. The brand recently launched an iPhone app, dubbed the "EFFEN Bar Locator." Also created by Euro RSCG Chicago, the app locates the nearest bars and restaurants that serve EFFEN. The app uses augmented reality technology that combines with GPS, a live camera feed and compass to create an image of directions to bars and restaurants carrying EFFEN. The App is free from the App Store.

Be the first of your friends to "like" this.

Amy Corr is managing editor, online newsletters for MediaPost. She can be reached at

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More on Closing

from my email:

Daily Sales Tip: The Trial Close

There comes a point when salespeople need to determine whether or not they're better off walking away from a sale.

One way top negotiators draw the line is by using a trial close. If the prospect is putting off signing a contract and requests another concession, the salesperson can regain control by asking:

"If I can get approval for this one final detail, do you see anything else that would keep us from doing business together?"

It's a question that lets the prospect know they'll work hard to get the details squared away. But at the same time, it puts prospects in a position to make a verbal commitment pending the one final condition being met.

Source: Professional negotiator Michael Soon Lee

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Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Wednesday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Click & Read:

by Sarah Mahoney
"When the economy was at its worst, there were a lot of recession refugees shopping at Walmart," brand strategist Adam Hanft tells Marketing Daily. "And the question always was, 'What kind of job will Walmart do keeping those shoppers when the economy recovers?' And people were not happy with the experience they had there." ...Read the whole story >>
by Karl Greenberg
The Gran Tourism 5 game is the right sort of starting point for the competition, Nissan's Erich Marx tells Marketing Daily, because it is so realistic. "It really does serve as a viable filter for those who have the instincts and capability to turn it into real racing." Participants can't have raced professionally. ...Read the whole story >>
by Aaron Baar
"We can all think of situations where you can't plug in a phone," Lauren Curler, marketing and communications manager for SLANT Media, the agency behind the campaign, tells Marketing Daily. "We wanted to flesh that out a bit." ...Read the whole story >>
by Karlene Lukovitz
Importantly, the food manufacturing industry is far from alone in seeing some overall decline in customer satisfaction. Among the four non-durable manufacturing industries covered in this new annual report, only apparel saw an improvement: up 1%, for an average industry score of 83. ...Read the whole story >>
by Karl Greenberg
Via Santa Monica-based RPA -- which became AOR in 2007 -- it comprises five 30-second television spots starring the actress. The company says the ads are rolling out in the next few months. In one of the unscripted spots, Shields talks about her own childhood and how everyone she knew had a La-Z-Boy recliner. ...Read the whole story >>
by Tanya Irwin
This year's spot generated a 500% increase in consumer visits to the company's site and 1 million incremental page views in a 24-hour period right after the game, according to Brian Sharples, founder and chief executive officer of HomeAway. ...Read the whole story >>
by Aaron Baar
"We looked at our 3D product, and it's such a unique stand-alone product today in the marketplace," Ron Gazzola, vice president of marketing and operations for the company's electronic imaging division, tells Marketing Daily. "3D as a medium is such a hot word with audiences and consumer electronics manufacturers, we felt it was important to get one of our leading products in front of the audience." ...Read the whole story >>

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Social Media Myth: No Reason to Buy Advertising

I'll let the words of John Jantsch of Duct Tape Marketing handle this one, from his blog:

5 Reasons Why You Must Advertise

Sending email is free, creating a Facebook page is free, Twitter outreach is free, cold-calling is free, publicity is free, referrals are free, and advertising costs money.

So why is it that even with all of these wonderfully low cost and free ways to promote your business I contend that you must make advertising one of your core lead generation tactics? (Actually one could argue if anything is free, but the items listed above don’t come with a direct cost.)

Advertising is in fact one of the marketing tactics that comes with an invoice. You must write a check to run ads or send direct mail, often before seeing any results. In my experience people shy away from advertising, not because of the cost, because they don’t know how to get results and they don’t understand the long-term residual effects. Think about it, if you knew that for every $100 you spent you could produce $200, you would get out your check book and spend away, right?

To get results from advertising today you must

  • Be laser focused on a specific ideal client
  • Create awareness for valuable content with a call to action
  • Measure leads and conversion fanatically

But, that’s a topic for another post, today I want to first get the leverage to help you understand why you must add advertising to mix and then we can start to talk about how.

When done effectively advertising is an essential part of mix because:

  1. Advertising is the only medium you can control – if you want your message to hit on the day a product launches or event is about to happen, this is the only vehicle you control completely.
  2. Advertising allows you to target ideal customers only – when you match a very personal message to a very select audience you get far greater connection.
  3. Advertising creates awareness for your content – The force that drives a great deal of conversion and trust building these days is educational content – ebooks, seminars and blog posts – advertising is a great way to help get that content found and consumed once you’ve gone to the effort to produce it.
  4. Advertising adds credibility to your message – Don’t ask me why this is exactly, but every time I run advertising people comment that business must be going well. The perception that you can afford advertising is often enough to sell and resell prospects and customers alike and makes it easier to get attention for your entire message.
  5. Advertising amplifies everything else you’re doing – When you are using advertising to create awareness for your content you automatically create more awareness for everything you are doing. Journalists find companies that advertise, referral sources remember companies that advertise, people fan and follow and friend from ads, and employees can point to well-placed ads as a source of pride in place they work.

And for your information, I work in the traditional media and advertising world with 4 Radio Stations in Fort Wayne, along with a Hispanic Newspaper, Advertising & Media Consulting, Social Media Training and I serve on the board of Directors of the Fort Wayne Chapter of the American Advertising Federation.

Need some help? Contact me by clicking here:

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The 7 Minute Presentation

from Jill Konrath's blog & email:

How to Give a Quick Presentation—That's Effective!

Posted: 08 Nov 2010 05:32 PM PST

7-min I just came across this ebook, How to Create a Seven-Minute Rifle-Shot Presentation, by Joey Asher. It's excerpted from 15 Minutes Including Q&A, his new book.

It's excellent. Definitely worth your time to download it. It starts out with this:

For most people, requiring that they give their presentation in seven minutes or less will seem absurd. "How can I do that? I've spent a month on this project! Now you want me to say everything in seven minutes? Impossible!"

But it's not that hard if you keep a simple principle in mind. Your goal isn't to tell everything you did. It's to help your listeners with their lives...

Start your presentation by putting your finger on the key issue or question that your audience cares about. Then detail how you plan to help them with that issue...

If you'd like to find out how to do that simply and elegant, click here to download your copy now.

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Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Tuesday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Click & Read:

by Karl Greenberg
"We've spent the last year redefining and building the Dodge brand," says Ralph Gilles, whom the company calls "president and CEO" of the Dodge brand. "Now we're going to show customers what the future of Dodge will look like." The lineup includes a new Durango that has three rows of seats, a new version of the Charger, Avenger and Challenger, and new versions of the Journey crossover and Grand Caravan minivan. ...Read the whole story >>
by Sarah Mahoney
Phil Rist, BIGresearch's EVP, which conducted the survey for the NRF, tells Marketing Daily, "After years of practicality, Americans are getting more excited about buying special gifts for the people they love. And because people are aware that this will be a very promotional holiday period, they know they can do both." ...Read the whole story >>
by Karlene Lukovitz
Many frozen categories and products have been negatively affected by the continually growing variety of fresh prepared foods offered by food retailers (who have more to gain from these than from the limited frozen private label segment) -- as well as by consumers' perception that frozen products are less fresh, more expensive alternatives to cooking from scratch, points out Packaged Facts. ...Read the whole story >>
Financial Services
by Tanya Irwin
A lack of trust continues to be a challenge for financial institutions, as only 28% of Mintel respondents say they trust the financial services industry in general and 43% trust their bank to do what is best for their customers. Since consumers are wary of the motives of these companies, much of the trust that many brands enjoyed over decades has eroded and that will have to be re-earned. ...Read the whole story >>
by Sarah Mahoney
The stores will carry an assortment of national men's brands, as well as private-label clothing. Big and tall men now account for 50% of the population, it says, spending some $6 billion annually. And, thanks to America's weight problem, it's one of the fastest-growing segments out there. ...Read the whole story >>
by Karl Greenberg
The campaign, via Boston-based Arnold Worldwide, which also did Legacy's "Truth" campaign, spotlights the pulmonary hazards of working in the restaurant and bar industries. It does so with ironic ads that apply clichés about quitting smoking with the exigencies of work. The new spots -- three print and two radio -- reiterate how many workers, needing a job, simply have no choice in the matter. < ...Read the whole story >>
by Sarah Mahoney
Since 1924, Macy's has commandeered Broadway for its own glory, creating its own treasure trove of Americana, from Felix the Cat to Olive Oyl. Marketing Daily caught up with Amy Kule, just promoted to the role of executive producer of both the parade and the Fourth of July fireworks, to ask about what the parade lends to the Macy's brand. ...Read the whole story >>

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The Fallacy of Research

First off, I'm not against getting quality information before you take action.

But I work with a number of advertising agencies who place media buys on my radio stations and sometimes what they do is pretty stupid.

I've tried to teach some of these media buyers how to place commercials for their clients that will get better results than the schedules these folks have been trained to do based on formulas (and not common sense).

For more on the Dangers of Demographics, look at what I wrote here:

And check out what Pat McGraw says too:

Data is Over-rated, Mine for Gold

Posted: 15 Nov 2010 06:00 AM PST

You have too much data – too much stuff floating around, distracting you.

What you really need is information. Actionable information. The kind of information you can use to make well informed decisions.

Then you need to act. You need to take the appropriate steps necessary to bring that opportunity to life.

And in order to prove to all those doubters that you made the right decision, you need to have a clearly defined goal that signifies success combined with a clear, accurate way to measure and report on how your actions delivered specific results.

For most of us, data is noise that distracts, annoys. Information and insight is what we seek – and that takes a plan for quickly, accurately sifting through all that data so you can find the nuggets of gold.

So, do you need to capture more data? Or do you need to figure out how to turn data into insightful information so you can make better informed decisions?

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Early At 'Em

Not everyone is aware of this sales tip, from my email:

Daily Sales Tip: Get An Early Start

Many decision-makers get to the office early before strategic gate-keepers are in place.

They might just pick up their phone or answer the door if a salesperson calls early. They also have more time to listen to a sales presentation before the constant interruptions that may occur later in the day.

Source: Adapted from Selling When No One is Buying, by sales consultant Stephan Schiffman

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Monday, November 15, 2010

Monday Night Marketing News from Mediapost

Click & Read:

by Tanya Irwin
"Of course, the net effect is still negative, but not as negative as it might have been," consultant Peter M. Sandman tells Marketing Daily. "It's the nature of journalism that reporters are going to look for somebody to say it was awful and somebody else to say it wasn't that bad. Poor crisis communication is when the company is saying it wasn't that bad. Extraordinary crisis communication is when the company is the one saying it was awful." ...Read the whole story >>
by Sarah Mahoney
The report says that consumers continue to shift more of their purchases online, with 37% of survey respondents planning to make an online purchase, up from 30% last year. And the Cambridge, Mass.-based consulting firm says that in November and December, online shoppers are likely to spend $338 this year, up from $303 in 2009. ...Read the whole story >>
Food and Beverages
by Karlene Lukovitz
MillerCoors and Naked Juice are launching eco-educational initiatives through a new "Learn & Earn" platform offered by RecycleBank, the for-profit that rewards consumers and communities for activities that contribute to sustainability. Procter & Gamble was the first company to begin using the platform, which was introduced last month. ...Read the whole story >>
by Karl Greenberg
"When most people are given a price from a dealer, they tend to call two or three other dealers to triangulate. We have found that about 95% of these people are trying to make sure they are not getting screwed. And when someone is looking for price confidence, it's one of the strongest indicators of in-marketness. It's one of the last indicators before purchase." ...Read the whole story >>
Financial Services
by Tanya Irwin
"All of us with expertise and an interest in the outcome -- from investment providers to plan sponsors to financial professional to the personal finance media -- must do a better job of focusing people on the important impact of their retirement plan elections and arming them to make better decisions," says ING Insurance U.S. CEO Rob Leary. ...Read the whole story >>

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Love, Love, Love

Great advice from Drew:

Marketing tip #1: Create a love affair with your customers

Posted: 01 Nov 2010 09:42 AM PDT

96360627 Satisfaction is nice. Loyalty is good. Repeat business is dandy.

But none of that is love. And if you really want to get and keep a customer for life -- you have to be willing to stick your neck out and love them. You need to put your heart on your sleeve and woo them.

You need to create a love affair
with your customers.

Why? Let me give you 5 good reasons.

It feels good: No matter what you sell -- it feels better to serve people you care about. It's easier to go the extra mile for customers that are special. It helps elevate your work to noble work. As my friend Steve Farber says..."do what you love in the service of people who love what you do."

It's easier to sell more to a current customer who loves you, than a new customer: In fact, recent studies show that it 6-7 times more costly to acquire a new customer than it is to retain an old (in love) one.

It's more profitable: Boosting your customer retention up by as little as 5% can elevate your profits by 5-95%. New customers are more price sensitive and require a huge amount of up front time, even after you've closed the deal.

It generates word of mouth: When a customer loves you, they can't help but talk about you to others. When you make them feel special and go out of your way to love them -- they will be your most powerful marketing tool -- advocates who spread word of mouth.

It's incredible for employee retention: Who doesn't want to work at a place that gives them permission to be incredibly kind and considerate? Who wouldn't love to hear customers rave about them? Who isn't looking for a way to put more meaning into their work? Why not make it a labor of love!

Is there a business who has created a love affair with you? How does it feel to be on the receiving end of that kind of attention?

The real question in my mind is -- why wouldn't you create a love affair with your customers?

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Don't say this

from Jim Meisenheimer:

I Think Maybe I Can

I probably know what you're thinking, who would ever say something
like, "I think maybe I can?"

Well, I actually heard a sales representative say these words
during a sales call.

I was totally flabbergasted at what I heard.

I just couldn't believe he just said what he just said!

This is more common than you might imagine.

Stop and think for a minute. What's going on in your mind during
a sales call?

You're either talking or listening - probably talking, and
probably talking too much.

You're trying to cover all the bases.

If it's your first sales call to a sales prospect you're
definitely trying to create a favorable first impression.

You're also trying to anticipate objections.

You're also thinking about defending your price.

You're probably talking fast because you know your sales
prospect is a busy guy and won't be giving you all the time
you need.

Look, you're on the firing line. If you're like most salespeople
you can and do improvise what you say most of the time.

Unless you have prepared and practiced in advance, certain
elements of the sales call, what else can you do but improvise?

And when you improvise guess what happens?

What happens is you're likely to say things you don't remember

Just like the poor chap I was working with who said, "I think
maybe I can."

When the sales rep and I got back to his car and I asked him,
"What prompted you to say, I think maybe I can?"

He looked at me as though I had just threw a bucket of ice cold
water at him.

He said, "I said that?"

Of course, I had to say, "Yup!"

It was like he was, "Bewitched, bothered, and bewildered."

He just couldn't believe he said, "I think maybe I can" - but
he did.

Imagine - if you heard these words from:

Your surgeon says, "I think maybe I can do this operation for

Your dentist says, "I think maybe I can extract this tooth for

Your airline pilot says, "I think maybe I can get you to Chicago

Your golf pro says, "I think maybe I can improve your golf game."

Certainly, if you heard someone say this to you, your first
instinct would be to skedaddle out of there immediately.

The way I see it if you're a professional sales representative
you shouldn't be saying something like this.

The bigger problem, however,is not realizing that you said it.

How many other things are you saying unconsciously?

Wouldn't you like to know for sure? Of course!

Most salespeople are optimists by nature and I know that.

And I also know that most of you reading this article truly
believe you're not saying things like this.

Well, you probably are!

I put together a collection of 31 pathetic phrases like, "I think
maybe I can."

There's a good chance you're saying some of these things you
shouldn't be saying when you're talking to your sales prospects
and customers.

I put them all in a Webinar titled, "How To Avoid Sounding
Pathetic During A Sales Call."

The Webinar is scheduled for December 9th.

You're either saying these things or you're not saying these
things and there's really only one way to find out.

Please keep reading . . .


How To Avoid Sounding Pathetic
During Your Sales Calls

Mark your calendars - December 9th at 4 PM.

Check it out here:


Sales Trailblazer Lessons

Salespeople want to know what they're getting before they buy

Nothing wrong with that!

If you haven't already signed up to become a Sales Trailblazer
you probably don't know that there are 24 weekly lessons.

Here's what you get in the first five lessons:

1. Dream Big

2. Becoming The Best You Can Be

3. The A-B-C's Of Effective Goal Setting

4. How To Find Time For Yourself, Protect Your Sanity, Stay
Balanced, And Sell More

5. How To Avoid Making The Biggest Mistakes Most Salespeople
Make Part I

I'm ready when you are!


If Your Sales Manager Wants
To Become More Effective Please
Forward This Link To Him/Her

Learn what you need to know to be more effective:


Stop Singing The Blues

Like you, I'm optimistic about most things.

We haven't slain the Dragon called Recession yet.

The tide is turning and I'm very optimistic that things in our
country, the things that matter most, are starting to improve.

I live in the Sarasota area and here's some of what I'm seeing.

Last month, Pat Neil - a local builder, sold 39 new homes. He's
been in business 40 years and it was his best month ever.

Automobile sales are improving nationwide. And I'm doing my
part - I bought a new one yesterday.

Barry, a friend of mine, told me he could not get into any of
the nine movies playing last weekend, because they were all
sold out.

During the last three weeks, every restaurant we went to had
a waiting line.

Things run in cycles. The US economy has been down. Okay, stop
and think for a minute, where do you think it's headed now? Yup!

I'm getting calls asking about when I'm scheduling my next
No-Brainer Selling Skills Boot Camp.

So I'm biting the bullet, booked the hotel yesterday, and pleased
to let you know that my 16th No-Brainer Selling Skills Boot Camp
is scheduled for April 13-14, 2011.

Naturally, I'm offering once again an early-bird registration fee.

If you want to make 2011 your best year in sales ever, why don't
you sign-up today for this unique sales training experience.

Please go here for details:


Favorite Quote

Aristotle was asked, "What is the difference between an educated and uneducated man?" He replied, "The same difference as between being alive and being dead."



Let's go sell something by focusing on value - not price . . .

Jim Meisenheimer

22 years . . .

529 customers . . .

72.7% repeat business . . .

P.S. - You should know by now that Sales Trailblazers aren't
born, they're made.

Lao-tzu, a Chinese Philosopher (604 BC - 521 BC) once said,
"A journey of 1000 miles begins with a single step."

To become a Sales Trailblazer you must take a single step.

Please forward this Newsletter to someone else who
could benefit from these sales tips and selling strategies -
they'll thank you for it and of course so will I!

Jim Meisenheimer. 13506 Blythefield. Lakewood Ranch. FL. 34202

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