Category Archives: Reviews

Goodbye 2016 - Welcome 2017

Happy New Year to all.

Today is my first day back into the office since the holidays and I’m getting organized.  I’ve been reviewing my marketing action plans - not so much for my clients - but instead for my own business.

It’s easy to forget about marketing my consulting business when I’m focused on doing the marketing and branding work for the clients.

Each quarter has 3 months, so I’m planning to do one of each of these in each of the quarters:

  • Press release
  • Speaking engagement
  • Workshop

On Friday, I am speaking in Akron about my experiences in writing and publishing my book: Simple Steps, Big Results. I really have not done a lot to promote the book since it was first published because about that same time there were a lot of changes in my business. Perhaps that will change in 2017!

Even after 19 years of business, I still find it the most difficult to promote my company, my services and myself.

I find it much easier to focus on a client;s business!

At the end of 2016, I made it a habit to attend one networking event each week and talk with someone I don’t know.  While I’m not an introvert, I find it much harder to talk with people I don’t really know. There is such a familiarity in sitting near someone you know and having a conversation with them.  Getting out of my comfort zone is a key to growth.

I want to continue that into the new year.

As we usher in 2017, here are a couple of links that I have found interesting and helpful.  I imagine my branding and marketing friends will also enjoy these:

How to make sure that your business shows up on the GPS maps: From INC magazine, written by Anita Campbell from Small Business Trends.  Colors in Marketing: Also from Small Business Trends.

What are you reading that has helped with your marketing? What are you working on in 2017? Are you working on a new action plan for your branding and marketing?

Let me know by leaving a comment below.

Book Review: Star Brands

Star Brands A Brand Managers Guide to Build Manage and Market BrandsCarolina Rogoll’s new book, Star Brands: A Brand Manager’s Guide to Build, Manage & Market Brands is a  great resource for anyone seeking structured guidance on creating a brand plan.

Rogoll presents a five-step practical guide on taking a business and brand from conception… to realization… to success.

I like her five points - They are  very similar to the 4 M’s of Marketing that I use. I would combine point 3 and 4 (Crafting a Communication Strategy and Establishing a Marketing Strategy) into a single point, but a 4 sided star looks a lot more like a rectangle!! So I completely understand why she separates the two.

Carolina Rogoll - from LinkedInShe has a great background - real world experience (her LinkedIn profile says P&G experience since 2003) — combined with working as an educator in branding (School of Visual Arts In NYC.)

I also like that she uses case studies from famous brands, such as Harley Davidson and MasterCard, and  interviews withbusiness school professors, advertising agency leaders and former CEOs.

Star Brands is a practical book that business professionals and entrepreneurs can use as their own brand building “workbook.”

Of course, I can’t let a book review pass without mentioning my book. I wrote it to help the small business owner who wants to brand and market their business: Simple Steps, Big Results. It’s been my experience that learning lessons from big brands is very helpful - especially in theory - but when you’re dealing with a micro budget, sometimes lessons don’t translate from the million dollar brands.

Full Disclosure: While my Amazon link does NOT attach to an affiliate link, nor am I being paid for this review, I did receive the e-book for free in exchange for doing this review.

Malcolm Gladwell Does It Again

David and GoliathOne of my favorite authors, Malcolm Gladwell, is launching a new book on Oct 3. While this early review by Seth Godin doesn’t make the book sound all that great, I have yet to be disappointed by any of Gladwell’s books (Outliers, Blink, The Tipping Point)

David and Goliath: Malcolm Gladwellâs tour de force…

Malcolm Gladwell, the brilliant author of The Tipping Point and Outliers, is out with a new book on October 3rd. Is there a better title for a business book? When I heard what he was up to, I was immediately, insanely jealous. I can think of a hundred auth…

Love the subtitle: Underdogs, Misfits and the Art of Battling Giants

I’m especially interested in this book because there is a saying we have in my company, SMALL, BUT MIGHTY! I’m eager to see how Gladwell’s observations relate to my business!

Marketing with Reviews: Reviewing and Rating Places, Companies and Your Products

Do you use reviews to market your products, services and business?

After a customer or client has said how much they appreciate your business, product or service, ask them to post a review on line with a specific site that will help you. 

For a service professional, it may be LinkedIn recommendations or simply asking for a “LIKE” for your Facebook Fan Page.  For a product or a restaurant, it may be different.

Some of the sites require that your website is registered before anyone can LIKE it, review it, or recommend it… and it is generally the site owner’s responsiblity to register the site. 

Here are some examples of directories with reviewing capabilities or just plain review sites.

It’s takes a little time to register your site, but don’t you think it is better for you as the owner to register your own site, than someone else claiming it, right? If you leave a review, make sure you follow the rules!  It’s very important to make sure that you use full disclosure!

 The revised Guides specify that while decisions will be reached on a case-by-case basis, the post of a blogger who receives cash or in-kind payment to review a product is considered an endorsement. Thus, bloggers who make an endorsement must disclose the material connections they share with the seller of the product or service. Likewise, if a company refers in an advertisement to the findings of a research organization that conducted research sponsored by the company, the advertisement must disclose the connection between the advertiser and the research organization. And a paid endorsement – like any other advertisement – is deceptive if it makes false or misleading claims.

Which crucial site did I miss?

Where are some places for reviews that are appropriate for your business?

Let me know by leaving a comment below!

Photo credit: Kelly Abbott AttributionShare Alike Some rights reserved by Roebot

Event and Retail Marketing: Facebook Places versus Four Square

Foursquare, which was introduced about a year ago, has become one of the best ways for a retail destination establishment to take advantage of social media — (in addition to an enewsletter, a blog, a Twitter program and a Facebook fan page.)

Now Facebook has introduced their own app, called Facebook Places, for consumers to let others know where they’re having coffee, enjoying a beer or real time gathering for a get together.

Facebook is a formidable competitor with 400 million users and provides very strong competition to Foursquare.  But Foursquare has several advantages:

  • Right now Facebook’s Places is only for iPhone, but Ffoursquare funoursquare has apps for the Blackberry and other devices.
  • And it’s only available in the USA.
  • Foursquare has been first to market
  • Foursquare seems more fun… half game.  Just look at the difference in the graphics?!
  • You can already connect Foursquare to Facebook
  • And there’s the foursquare store

But nonetheless, Facebook already has everyone’s friends in place, so the biggest barrier (getting all your friends to join) is already overcome.  Privacy issues?  I expect to hear more about it. 

Only 3 million users are using Foursquare as of August 2010 (today.) I wonder how many people will be using Facebook Places one year from now? (Note to self, come back and check!!)

If I was promoting a restaurant, coffee shop, kickboxing studio, amusement park or destination, you bet I’d be displaying BOTH symbols for my marketing program and offering incentives for everyone who checks in or use both in my marketing bag of tricks!

My bet is on Facebook.

Flickr photo via creative commons Nan Palmero