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Posts from the Marketing Category

Getting “The Word” Out

June 6th, 2007 by Chief Nut

David Meerman Scott, author of my new favorite book on marketing, The New Rules of Marketing and PR, posts a story about Mark Batterson, a church leader in Washington D.C. If Mark can do these AMAZING marketing feats with his idea of what a church could/should be, then certainly every business owner can do the same with their own marketing.

Mikaela Cade MinistriesA new client of ours, Mikaela Cade, is a pastor in Italy. She’s about ready to go live (tomorrow if all goes well) with her new v.1 web site. Most people who build their first web site will create a handful of static pages and quit developing for a year, or more, because of how work intensive it is to create something great. They settle for the online brochure site. Not Mikaela. Her vision was to build a web presence with: a blog, an electronic newsletter, a shopping cart for her books and special reports, an automated online calendar for her webinars and live events, major PR plans, and LOTS of information about her mission and services … really, the works! Without even reading David’s book, she is demonstrating - like Mark Batterson - that getting “the word” out has gone virtual and the new rules of online marketing warrant more than serious consideration. Bravo Mikaela!

FYI, David has extended his offer of a free CD - Online News Releases to Reach Your Buyers Directly - if you purchase his book on Amazon by Friday! That’s a $50 freebie. If you’re a client of mine, PLEEEEEASE buy this book. It’ll give us LOTS to talk about and will support everything Allen and I have been preaching.

The Might of the Micro

May 30th, 2007 by Chief Nut

Lani Voivod, over at Epiphanies, Inc. writes about a visit from a group of Korean Micro Enterprises…. In addition to a Disney quote, Lani also warns us to NOT underestimate the “Might of the Micro.”… Good Advice.

Consider your marketing…. How serious are you about marketing B2B and (specifically) to Micro Enterprises? Those are the folks that are running super small businesses with less than $500K in annual gross revenues and less than 5 employees…. If not, consider how MANY of them are out there…. For example, here in the beautiful State of New Hampshire, a whopping 87% of all businesses in the state qualify as “Micro” Enterprises…. Yes, that was EIGHTY SEVEN percent!!… Yowza!

MicroCredit … MacroEvent

May 10th, 2007 by Chief Nut

Can you believe it? … it’s the middle of May! Soooo, how’s that marketing plan coming along? Hmmm?

If you need a business boost, here’s a tip; MicroCreditNH has opened up their big event … the “Entrepreneurial Exchange Day” … to the general business public! I know I’m going to be enjoying it … I’ll be one of the speakers!! My cohorts include; Judy Carlough, Sandler Sales Training; Steve Forkey (SEO guru), WebAction Group; Christine Halvorson, Halvorson New Media; Debby Hoffman, Positive Results Seminars; Susan O’Neil, @Web Site Publicity; Thom Pollard, Eyes Open Productions; and Lani Voivod (that A-Ha Gal), Epiphanies, Inc.

Here’s the skinny:

Concord, NH, May 1, 2007 - Are you self-employed and seeking fresh marketing, business development and technology strategies to further develop your business? MicroCredit-NH has organized a statewide event dedicated to business development and networking for New Hampshire’s small business owners. “Entrepreneurial Exchange 2007: Reach the Peak” will be held in Concord on Saturday, May 12th from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM. The event will take place at the Grappone Conference Center at the Courtyard Marriott on 70 Constitution Avenue. Entrepreneurial Exchange 2007 is sponsored by PSNH, the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Laconia Savings Bank and First Colebrook Bank.

The Entrepreneurial Exchange will offer participants a choice of four morning workshops to attend. These include: Effective Sales Techniques, covering sales and listening strategies to build rapport with prospects and clients to increase business; Business Development, which will provide participants tools for brainstorming including 50 ways to boost business productivity, visibility and profits; Technology Panel, with three speakers discussing the latest opportunities technology provides to small business owners, including search engine optimization, blogging, and search engine marketing; and Marketing, which will focus on the power and significance of a strong branding strategy.

In addition to the morning workshop tracks, the event will include two hours of facilitated and open networking time and afternoon roundtable discussions facilitated by the workshop presenters. These discussions will cover a variety of business issues and challenges facing the small business owner.

“The Entrepreneurial Exchange is MicroCredit-NH’s premier event of 2007,” explained Rob Riley, Director of MicroCredit-NH. “Our mission is to increase the income and economic stability of New Hampshire’s small businesses, and this event will offer strategies for participants to achieve increased profits through business skill development and networking opportunities. We encourage the self-employed from all corners of the state to join us for this unique day of training and celebration of entrepreneurship.”

Pre-registration is required, as space is limited. The registration fee is $40, which includes lunch. To register and for more information, visit for a live online registration link, or call MicroCredit-NH at 1-800-769-3482.

Hope to see you there!!!

Integrated, Schmintegrated

April 27th, 2007 by Chief Nut

What do these things have in common?:

  • Your web activity logs
  • Your last direct mail postcard
  • Your last advertisement
  • Google analytics
  • A landing page on your web site

Give up? Answer: They’re all small pieces of your marketing mix but you’ve probably not integrated any two of them together!

Hugh Bishop (Chairman of British Direct Mail powerhouse agency Meteorite) commented in a Marketing Week article that the amount of data that is available, or can be collected (willingly) from the consumer, dramatically changes how marketing can be performed. He says:

With this knowledge comes the power, not only to find potential new customers but also to take them on a personal journey delivering the right messages at the right time, via the most appropriate media. And thanks to the new digital channel, all of this can be delivered in more cost-effective ways than ever before.

Unlike “pure” digital, the [Direct Marketing] industry can fuse who brands want to talk to, what they want to say and where and when it is best to communicate with consumers. This in turn enables the [Direct Marketing] agency to deliver individual and effective customer journeys.

So, it’s NOT about creating single point campaigns designed to sell or “pull.” It’s more about discovering who your audience is … using objective data … and then offering up an experience. Build a relationship with your audience members and you’ll be able to create evangelists, not just one-time buyers.

Lowe and Estevez were Buzzworthy

April 13th, 2007 by Chief Nut

Two years after the movie St. Elmo’s Fire came out (holy cow, that was 1987), I was visiting a friend of mine at Pepperdine University. We were walking from the dorms across campus and something was happening. You could feel the buzz in the air. People were walking faster. People were whispering to each other. Complete strangers were talking to each other in an odd way. Then, we became part of the wave…. some girl, all a titter, told us that Rob Lowe and Emilio Estevez were on the campus, but she didn’t know where they were. Just the idea that they were on campus was worthy of buzz. A few minutes later, as we were walking by the track and field area, GUESS who we ran into?! We introduced ourselves, they introduced themselves (as if we didn’t know), we chatted a bit and we went along our merry way.

OK, I told you that story so I could tell you this one…

In Seth’s recent post he share’s his view about “worldviews” and how they impact our internal filtering mechanisms and daily actions. He’s referencing a Washington Post article about a test. One where world class violinist Josh Bell - and his priceless musical instrument - played outside of a D.C. subway station to see if anyone would take notice. Would thousands of people pass up the opportunity of experiencing genius simply because they didn’t recognize what was in front of them? You should read the story yourself. It’s a fascinating social experiment.

Here’s a snippet from Seth’s post:

If your worldview is that music in the subway isn’t worth your time, you’re not going to notice when the music is better than usual (or when a famous violinist is playing). It doesn’t match the story you tell yourself, so you ignore it. Without permission to get through to you, the marketer/violinist is invisible.

HEAR, HEAR! So, what’s the difference between the two stories? Both involve something out of the ordinary suddenly appearing out of normal context, in public. The first story involved SOMEbody recognizing the situation and starting some buzz. The second story didn’t.

Lesson for business owners; When it comes to marketing your product or service, the presentation, the context, the quality, the features, the benefits … they ALL matter very little UNLESS you can connect with people. Like with Josh Bell, although he was “giving away a free world-class performance, it didn’t matter to people because they had put up their blinders. Their anti-spam filters were so heavily set on “high”, there wasn’t a way for them to recognize what was happening right in front of them.

So let’s try to predict what would happen if we combine these two stories. If, in front of the subway station, as part of the social experiment, we planted a couple of evangelists … people who would go around to just a couple of other people around them and whisper to them “Hey, that’s Josh Bell playing on a priceless Stradivarius”. How quickly would that next person’s paradigm shift? How quickly would the filters be turned off? Bottom line; How quickly would they then stop to make note of what was in front of them? Possibly more important is the question, how quickly would the buzz spread through the crowd??

Business marketing is NOT about showing people your features or quality. It’s about connecting with them first … THEN you can talk about your features and benefits. Show your features before you connect and you won’t be able to penetrate the filters, just like Josh Bell … except he owns a Stradivarius and you don’t.

Flash Me Your Virality

February 22nd, 2007 by Chief Nut

Interactive, Flash-based animations have been around for years. Turning them into viral marketing fun and having a creative idea explode onto the world of the consumer is a recent thing.

This past holiday season we had Office Max’s “Go Elf Yourself” video (sadly, no longer available). And, now we have the Guinness Beer “A Short Film Called Hands“. VERY soon the quirky fun of these little ditties will wear off and we’ll all need to take it up a notch. Until then, let your hands fiddle.

Marketing tip: Can YOU think of a viral idea that can be spun into a cute little interactive game like this? If so, you’d better do it SOON before the wave passes you by.

The Artist’s Way

February 11th, 2007 by Chief Nut

A good friend told me about a 12 week study course called The Artist’s Way, by Julia Cameron. I’ve just started it and I can already tell it’s going to be one of those life-changing, earth moving, mind-bending, paradigm altering affairs.

Friday evening I read a little tid-bit in the book’s early pages how you should focus your efforts on things you’re drawn to AS WELL AS those things you find you’re shying away from. The “neutral” things in life, you’ve likely got covered. The ones that you’re attracted to indicate where your passions lie and the one’s you’re avoiding are likely things you need to address. Simple idea … BIG impact.

In just two days, I’m amazed at how relevant this one idea is to being productive and keeping me focused on the important tasks in my schedule.

Are YOU resisting anything in your business development? … in your marketing plan? If so, take it as a sign that these things need to be done first! Simply dive in … the water’s warm.


January 24th, 2007 by Chief Nut

It’s a quarter to one IN THE A.M. and I just got home from work. Do I relish having to get up in just a few hours to head on back to the grind? Nope. So WHY in the HECK am I up blogging at this early hour?!?! Let me explain…

I just completed a marathon session of audio recording with Content Strategist Allen Voivod of Epiphanies, Inc. We’re co-authoring a series of products to assist business owners in a number of aspects of their marketing. Cooooool. What’s amazing to me … in this exact moment … is how inspired and UN-tired I am right now. Creating a new and exciting product is totally energizing!

This is what Allen and his business partner (and lovely wife) teach to all of their clients. How to create “bold insight and joy-filled action” in your business! They call it “A-Ha-ing” yourself.

If this is how a business owner can feel after a 17 hour day, then COUNT ME IN EVERY DAY. Well, not for the 17 hour part. You know what I mean! Have you A-Ha’d yourself lately??

43 Things to do in 2007

January 8th, 2007 by Chief Nut

While reading “Eat That Frog” last night, I committed to doing a better job of putting my goals in writing. I’ve always valued the act of doing so but have typically fallen short on the task. This commitment is not necessarily based on a “New Years Resolution” per se, but there are A LOT of people out there in the middle of trying to stick to new resolutions made in the past week. Because 2007 is going to be THE year for a social networking expolsion (it began a while ago), I thought I’d pass this tip along…

Put your goals in writing and make your commitment to the rest of the world. Don’t do this anonymously, however, make sure somebody you know sees it!

Check out 43 Things. It’s a social networking site where you can interact with others who are trying to attain the same goals as you. Cooool.

GO NUTS in 2007!

December 28th, 2006 by Chief Nut

Here’s a press release from Acorn Creative and Epiphanies, Inc………

Local Companies Partner to Help Small Businesses and Service Professionals Sharpen Their Marketing in 2007

The New Year offers small businesses a chance to refresh their focus, correct past mistakes, and set a bold new course to improve their performance. Two local companies, Acorn Creative of Laconia and Epiphanies, Inc. of Gilford, recently partnered up to help businesses start 2007 on the right track.

The result of their collaboration debuted Tuesday, December 19th. “The Secret to Making Your Business Go Nuts in 2007″ is a free special report offered by the two companies as a PDF download from their website,

“A lot of small businesses told us 2006 didn’t go as well as they’d hoped,” said Lani Voivod of Epiphanies, Inc. “Now that 2007’s right on top of us, we wanted to help business owners and solo professionals get off to a great start.”

Acorn and Epiphanies combined their complementary skills and service offerings to create the special report. Acorn performs brand consulting, graphic design, and website development. Epiphanies specializes in idea generation, information product creation, and integrated marketing strategies.

“When businesses come to us for a new website, a new brochure, or a new direct mail piece, we like to step back and look at the bigger picture,” said Kevin Skarritt of Acorn Creative. “If the company isn’t making a real connection with their target market, it doesn’t matter how well-designed their new website or print piece is, or how many more people hear about the company because of a new marketing element.

“If the company fails to build a consistent identity over time, the company is bound to fail. We don’t want that to happen. That’s why we step back and make sure the foundation is in place, and that’s what the ‘Go Nuts’ special report is really about.”

“We’re not exactly ‘quick fix’ people,” added Allen Voivod, also with Epiphanies, Inc. “Great business stories have three success factors in common: Building audience relationships, expert reputations, and client bases. None of that happens overnight.”

Because of their similar approaches to business development, Acorn and Epiphanies chose to focus on tactics for improving those success factors in their report. At the same time, they also lay out the underlying strategy behind Acorn’s design process … a strategy that’s helped Acorn win “Best of the Web” honors from Forbes magazine for the last six years.

“The Secret to Making Your Business Go Nuts in 2007″ free special report, which explains the fundamental ideas behind Acorn’s business development strategy and seven ways a business can put those ideas into action for themselves, is available online through January 31st, 2007.

To access the report, and for instructions on how to secure one of 60 free consultations being offered by Acorn Creative in January 2007, go to