By k | December 31, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in Corporate Games

I’ve had some idiotic bosses,
bosses who snagged their jobs
by being related to the owner,
sucking up to the right people
or other iffy means.

But I didn’t badmouth them
(at work)
because, hey, I was the idiot
working for the idiot.

As Annie McKee,
coauthor of Primal Leadership,
shares

“You need to be respectful.
If you badmouth your manager,
it’s going to reflect badly on you.
People notice and
worry you’ll talk about them
the same way.”

Don’t badmouth your boss.

By k | December 30, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

There has never been
a product launch
with zero risk.
Never.
It doesn’t matter
how much data we have,
how much research we do,
how closely we mirror
a previous launch,
we don’t know
how the product will perform.

Why?

Roger Martin
shares

“As the clever
early 20th century American
pragmatist philosopher
Charles Sanders Peirce
pointed out —
not about business
but about the world in general —
it is not possible to prove analytically
that a new idea is
a good one in advance.
Why?
It’s pretty simple
when you think about it.
There is no data
about how a genuinely new idea
will interact with the world
in advance of said new idea
actually interacting with the world.
Therefore there is no way
to prove it will work in advance.”

The only way
to prove
your product will be successful
is to launch it.
Pull the trigger.

By k | December 29, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

When I started in business,
25 years ago,
we were told
prospects had to see
our marketing messages
3 times
before making a decision.

After blogging
yet before Facebook,
that number increased
to 8 times.

Now, with social media,
that number is 20 times.

Gini Dietrich
shares

“It used to be that
a prospect had to see
a message about you,
your product or your service
three times
before making a decision
to do business with you.
Today,
because there’s so much content
available at our fingertips,
that number has swelled
to 20 times or more.”

Are you reaching your prospects
20 time or more?

By k | December 28, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Writers have it easy
in one way.
We ARE our brands.
Our social media accounts
are set up
under our pen names.

What happens
when your brand name
and your name
are different?
Which identity
should you use
on social media?

Brinn Sanders and Jimmy Hang
from Twitter
share

“If you run
a professional services company
and you are your own brand,
it could make sense to Tweet
from a personal username.
However,
if your business sells a product,
or if you run an online store
or company,
it would likely make more sense
to Tweet from a business username.”

Use the correct identity
for your business
on social media.

By k | December 27, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Entrepreneurs tend to be optimistic.
We have to believe
our companies and products will work
or we’d never launch them.

Top managers of established companies
tend to be pessimistic.

Frank Gruber,
cofounder and CEO of Tech Cocktail,
shares

“Positive psychology researchers
have found that
people in top managerial positions
are often pessimistic by nature,
trained to see the risks
and worst-case outcomes
in any situation.
While that can be beneficial
to the company,
it’s not the best attitude
when innovation is your goal.
If you’re pessimistic,
try to break out of that mental habit
and deliberately question your assumptions.
What evidence is there
that things will go horribly wrong?
What is the most likely result?
What could we gain by trying?”

If you’re dealing with a top manager
at a large organization,
realize she is likely
to be a pessimist.
Adapt your pitching style
to incorporate this.

By k | December 26, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

A buddy was grumbling
that a loved one
wanted her to go on a trip.
She told him
she wasn’t interested,
but the loved one was insisting.
It was causing huge problems
in their relationship.

I asked “Why does he want you to go?”
She said “He needs someone to go with.”
My reply?
“He has plenty of other someones
he could ask
and plenty of other places
he could travel to.
Why you, why there, and why now?”

She asked him.
It turned out
there was a significant
heart wrenching reason
why he wanted this trip to happen.
Once she uncovered this why,
she agreed to go with him.

If you want something to happen,
explain why.
If someone else wants you to do something,
ask why.
Why is very powerful.
Use it.

By k | December 25, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

We, entrepreneurs, talk a lot
about valuing our business partners,
our customers, our employees.
We discuss ways
to show these important people
that we care and appreciate them.

The members of our families
ARE business partners.
They might not have invested cash
(though many of them do,
working steady jobs
while we ride the entrepreneurial roller coaster).
They might not work directly
on our businesses.

But they do support us emotionally.
They’re there for us.
They help in a million different ways
that we don’t even notice.

Today, if you can,
thank them
by unplugging for one day,
by giving them ALL of your focus,
by reassuring them
that you’re there for them
as they are there for you.

(If you have a business
that serves customers today,
choose another day.)

Give them the gift of time.

By k | December 24, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Every entrepreneur knows
she’ll be working crazy long days
when she starts her business.

But how long can we expect
to work these endless hours?

Phaedra Hise
advises

“If you’re still working
a 16-hour day
five years
after starting your business,
then you’re either
a control freak
or you haven’t hired the right staff.”

I would also add
“or you don’t have a viable business”
and I would amend this to
“If you still HAVE to work”.
I love writing.
I doubt I’ll ever treat this business
as a 9 to 5 job.
I’d happily spend
every moment I can
writing.

Have you been working too hard
for too long
on your business?
Then it is time to reevaluate
your situation.

By k | December 23, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

If you’re like me,
you’re rushing
to schedule social media content
for over the holidays.

The good news is…
You don’t have to
write all of this content yourself.

Convince and Convert
shares

“Companies that link
to third-party websites
(content curation)
75 percent of the time or more
generate a lot of clicks
but few conversions.
This makes sense,
since conversions happen
on your own website.

Companies that link
to third-party sites
between 50 and 75 percent
of the time
have fewer clicks per post
but realize higher conversion rates.

Companies that link
to their own content
50 percent of the time or more
experience a negative impact
on clicks-per-post (engagement),
but they don’t realize greater conversions
than companies
with a more balanced mix
of owned versus curated content.”

What does this mean?
You only have to make up
your own sh*t
50 percent of the time.
The rest can be shares or retweets
or forwards
(with a reason why you’re doing this).

Share the love.

By k | December 22, 2014 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Romance writers know
that the more
a character is on the page,
the more readers care
about this character.
The reader could love the character
or hate the character
but she will be invested
in what happens to the character.

THIS is what marketing is.
The more a brand is seen,
is part of our lives,
even in the smallest of ways,
the more we care about
this brand.
Again, we could love the brand
or we could hate the brand
but we’ll be invested
in what this brand does.

Once we’re emotionally invested,
we are more likely
to buy this brand.
We might even actively seek
more exposure to this brand.

Make your product or brand
part of your target consumers’
lives.