By k | February 18, 2015 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

We’ve all done it.
We have a stressful day,
return home,
flop in front of the TV
and watch something brainless
like the Bachelor,
trying to relax.

It doesn’t work.

A study
has now proved this.*

“Spending hours on
mindless TV or video games
to relieve stress
after a long day
may actually accomplish
just the opposite.
A European study
reported in the Journal of Communication
found that watching intellectually stimulating fare
(like TV documentaries
or smart dramas)
or playing logic
or problem-solving games
made subjects feel happy and productive,
but watching junk TV
or playing video games
made them feel down and guilty
because they felt they’d wasted their time
and hadn’t accomplished anything.”

Don’t try to relax
by watching just anything
on TV.
Choose your shows wisely.

*December 2014
Men’s Fitness

If you’re successful,
even a little bit successful,
you’ll receive more opportunities
than you can tackle well.
Because you’ve been ignored
or had to fight for previous opps,
there’s a temptation
to take them,
to stretch yourself too thin.

In December 2014
Men’s Health,
Sons Of Anarchy star
Charlie Hunnam shares
why he turned down
the role of Christian Grey
in Fifty Shades Of Grey

“I was going to finish
playing a psychopath
who’d just lost his wife
[in Sons of Anarchy],
and five days later
I’d be on set playing Christian Grey.
I was like
‘This is going to be
a fucking disaster.’
It was the opposite of how
I’ve tried to ground my career,
not stretch myself too thin,
and always do my homework.”

“There’s a tendency
in this Hollywood machinery
to take on too much.
You end up not being able
to give everything you want.”

In other words,
you produce shit.
You don’t want that.

Be choosy about your opportunities.
Ensure you can deliver.

By k | February 16, 2015 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Seth Godin
has a great post on
how we watch video.

“Forty years ago,
Stanley Kubrick showed us 2001.
The first 90 seconds are
without dialogue and solid black.
It’s hard to imagine
that working as the intro
to a YouTube video today.

our finger is on
the mouse trigger,
ready to leave in a moment.
Not only that,
but instead of leaning forward,
we’ve got our shields set to level 7,
wary of what’s to come.”

This is how we consume

Wonder how readers
moved past the challenged narrative
in Fifty Shades of Grey
(or Twilight or ???)?

They didn’t read it.
Many of the readers I surveyed,
including some self-professed ‘fangirls’,
only read the dialogue.
That’s it.

How your prospects
consume the format
of your marketing
should influence
the design of your marketing.

Produce marketing pieces
that work in today’s world.

By k | February 15, 2015 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Our opportunities are only
as limited
as our thinking.
The issue is…
for many of us,
our thinking is extremely limited.
We can’t see opportunities
so we can’t take advantage of them.

That is why we need people
who suggest the strange,
the bizarre,
the non status quo,
the thinking outside the box.

Because once we’re out of this box,
we can see even more opportunities.

This is true for co-workers,
even customers.

Seth Godin

“But in revolutionary times,
when the number of options
is exploding,
the opportunities go to someone
who can describe something
that’s not in stock,
that perhaps has never
even been described before.

Custom-made does you no good
if you don’t know what you want.”

When you see someone limited
by her thinking,
suggest opportunities
outside of her current world.

By k | February 14, 2015 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Today is Valentine’s Day.

Yes, consumers don’t spend
as much on Valentine’s Day
as they do on Christmas
but that could signal an opportunity
larger companies aren’t focused on.

What are people buying?
52% will buy candy.
37.8% will buy flowers.
35.1% will splurge on a night out
- movies or a restaurant meal.
21.1% will buy jewelry.

Who are they buying for?
91% are treating their significant others.
58.7% will spend on other family members.
21.2% are pampering their pets,
yes, their pets.

Is Valentine’s Day
an opportunity
for your company?

Note: Valentine’s Day themed romance novels
traditionally don’t sell very well.
It is better for writers
to write a non-seasonal romance
and market it during Valentine’s Day.

By k | February 13, 2015 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Bill Maurer*,
director of
University Of California-Irvine’s
Institute for Money, Technology
and Financial Inclusion,

“One strand in today’s payments game
is about replicating
in the physical world
what’s already taken place

Online, Amazon has this sewn up.
They track my purchases
and give me recommendations.
That’s easy on the Internet,
but it’s a big challenge
in the physical world,
and right now,
no one owns the consumer
at the point of sale.”

For large companies,
doing this
is a huge task.
They have thousands of customers,
even more products.

For a small, growing company,
this might be easier to do.
In fact,
some of your salespeople
might be already doing this,
purely by memory.

Consider creating a system
to recommend products
based on your customer’s
purchase history.

*January 2015
Delta Sky

By k | February 12, 2015 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

One of the ‘tricks’
writers use
is deliberately
putting our characters
into very tense, stressful situations.
Why do we do this?
Because who we are
during times of crisis
is often our true selves.

Kenneth Chenault*,
CEO of American Express,

“Leadership reputations
are made or lost
during times of crisis.
And the way you judge
a strong company
is really that company’s ability
to not just survive crisis
but to emerge stronger.”

How can business leaders use this?
Make the interview process
a bit stressful,
a bit uncomfortable.

Crisis reveals character.

*January 2015
Delta Sky

By k | February 11, 2015 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

I strive to learn something new
with every story.
Currently, I’m taking apart
a best selling similar story,
what made this story successful.

Robert Redford*,
and founder of
the Sundance Film Festival,

“I don’t believe
any of us are too successful
or too accomplished
to not be able to
learn something new.”

Have you learned
something new
this week?

* January 2015
Delta Sky

By k | February 10, 2015 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

We’ve all dealt with them
– customer service reps
who can’t handle it
when customers vary
from ‘the script’.
The illusion of being listened to
is shattered.
We realize
we’re being treated
like a product.

Sean MacPherson*,
hotelier and restauranteur,

“Service starts with
people being friendly and
who look to solve problems.
I don’t like service
that is too scripted.”

A script can be a guideline,
a suggestion of appropriate answers.
It shouldn’t be followed
word by word,
with no room
for variation.

*January 2015
Delta Sky

By k | February 9, 2015 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Seth Godin has some great advice
about processing advice

“Here’s a simple way to process advice:
Try it on.

Instead of explaining
to yourself and to your advisor
why an idea is wrong,
impossible or merely difficult,
consider acting out
what it would mean.
Act as if,
talk it through,
follow the trail.
Turn the advice
into a new business plan,
or a presentation
you might give to the board.
Turn the advice
into three scenarios,
try to make the advice even bolder…”

Know, also, how you react to advice.
My first reaction
is rejection
and then anger,
and finally acceptance.
Because I react this way,
I ask for advice
to be given in written form first.
I read it,
walk through the emotional reaction
and then can discuss it rationally
with the adviser.

Anyone who takes the time
to give you advice
Honor that caring
by, at the very least,
considering her advice.