Monthly Archives: August 2010

If you’ll do ANYTHING to make someone happy…

…they will ultimately despise you.  First of all, your happiness in none of my business.  I can do the next right thing, treat you with respect, have your best interest in mind in most of my actions, but I certainly cannot “make “someone happy.  That is on you.  I know people who are content and blissful waiting for a chemo treatment @ Stanford oncology,  and I know people who could snatch misery out of the birth of a child, but I digress.

Have you ever seen the couple where one partner does everything in their power to “make” the other happy?  You want a new car?  Lets make sure it has all leather interior.  We can afford a van, but wouldn’t a new Tahoe just be all the better?   Cabo is pretty affordable, but isn’t the diving soooooo much better in Turks and Caicos.  Let me do the shopping dear.  Oh don’t worry, I’ll get the dishes – never mind that I cooked dinner too…   First of all, I don’t think many people are that obsequious unless they are feeling guilty about something.   Secondly, I don’t think it is ever appreciated.   The recipient of this abundance of attention is probably at least at a sub-conscious level thinking:  what a fool!  How can you have any respect for someone who consistently acts like they worship you when deep down inside you know there is really nothing to worship?!?

The same is true in business.  If you give everything away, you are perceived to have no value.  People expect to pay for something that is worth something to them.  If you jump through hoops every time a customer breathes in your general direction, they end up not only running you ragged but they lose all respect for you.  Great customer service and an honest value for the dollar are the backbone of good business, but for goodness sake don’t get stupid.  They will only hate you for it!


Things are often not what they seem

I had a hard day today: several “planning” meetings trying to re-vamp our training curriculum, methods, and infrastructure. I needed a psychological break. Among my diversions is being the “go to” guy for our little rock band: CRASHING DEATH RUN, a modest outlet for the aggressions of an “integreated” social marketer. After some set list manipulation, I sought to escape the heat and grabbed my watering implements (one doesn’t dare say hose) and spent several glorious moments outside in the 85’ twilight. Upon my return to the workstation, I was faced with a screen displaying the second and third set list for an upcoming gig. I searched for the X in the top right corner to dis this screen and move on to my e-mails. Nothing happened. I began frantically clicking everywhere I could think of, including several Cntrl-Alt-Del strokes, and still, nothing! As my silent curses were developing to a deafening crescendo I had the urge to get physical with the screen. It was a good thing, because I found that I had printed out the set list, and set it in front of my LCD, and that the light emanating though it had made it seem like it was on the screen instead of in front of it. I removed the paper and continued on my journey to check e-mail, slightly daunted by the experience and eminently more humble. Things are often not what they seem.


The 7 Habits of Highly Successful LinkedIn Members –

So what makes a highly successful LinkedIn member? Here is what I have discovered as not only habits, but also “secrets” of the treasure chest on LinkedIn. 1. They invest their time strategically by putting fresh content on LinkedIn when it’s the best time to do so. Let me explain, for me weekends are times to prepare LinkedIn content, but as you will notice most collaboration does not take place on weekends. So hold the great Q/A’s, the awesome discussion topics, or the great status updates until Monday and never late Friday. Think about what your audience is doing and be strategic. 

2. They use their status update to post something new every 24 to 48 hours and 80% of those updates include a link that gives a call to action. Such as signing up for your next webinar, promotions to visit your blog, or visiting your corporate website etc… 

3. They answer target specific questions that are related to their target market. This is great exposure for your business that LinkedIn Pros are doing everyday! 

4. They change their Picture profile every two months. This creates dialogue and interaction with your network. This is another way to keep your brand in front of everyone. Pictures are worth a thousand _ _ _ _ _ (fill in the blank) 

5. They answer every LinkedIn email/in mail. Maybe not timely, but they never waste an opportunity! 

6. They post their company events on the events application provided by LinkedIn and use this as a way to measure interest and involvement for such things as conferences, webinars, or seminars. The events application has only been recently used by LinkedIn Elite, but many are beginning to wise up to its amazing potential. 

7. These highly successful members have identified their target markets on LinkedIn, their goals on LinkedIn, and are executing their plan every single work day. Social Media can be measured, but most don’t understand how to begin measuring their Social Media efforts because they have never identified their goals for using the LinkedIn space. Once you have identified your goals then you can build a measurable matrix to analyze your efforts. 

From Suzie Weitzman –


Keep your eyes on the road, and…

…your hands upon the wheel!  – Jim Morrison (also dead)

Celeb doctor was tweeting about dog before fatal crash : Hot Topics

If I really have to say anything about this, we have a more serious problem than I thought.


It’s the end of the “job” as we know it…

…and I feel fine. I just emailed an outline of what I consider my “marketing universe” to a new friend. He responded with “taking a quick look, it seems almost impossible that one person would be skilled or knowledgeable enough to be good or effective at all of them (the channels).” The fact is that even massive corporations have trouble covering all the bases at all, let alone well. Traditional marketers don’t mix well with internet marketers, and the communication is almost non-existent. Hence the evolution of Integrated marketing: Instead of a “job” and a staff, I envision a “manager” coordinating a vast stable of contributors, whether free-lance contractors, associates, or whatever you want to call them, and matching their skills and efforts to a series of concurrent projects. The sporadic nature of the marketing demands and projects leads itself to a more fluid structure. Not so good news for the 40 hour a week employee, but probably more realistic for the worker bees that are struggling to bill 1000 hours a year and still afford their own health care.


If you want photos of horses without saddles, don’t just Google “bareback.”

I am a simple, if not entirely old-fashioned man.  My father grew up on a cattle ranch in Montana.  These two facts may seem irrelevant to our friends at Google, but I kind of feel like part of me got lost somewhere in the world of twisted meanings.  Maybe the medium is getting to be the message again.

I was doing some photo shopping for a client and wanted a photo of a horse to plop a (fully clothed thank you) photo of my friend on the horse.  Let’s just say that on the first page in Google Images (hate the new format with all the click-throughs) there were fewer horses than anything else.  It’s not just that some of the images were slightly offensive, which they were, it’s just that everything on the net is becoming so bloody commercialized you have to go through a mountain of crap to get any content.  I would have been better off going to Web-shots.  The Google search-thought police will probably drop me from their engine for this, but this afternoon I couldn’t care less.


The barking dog

About two or three weeks ago some neighbors moved in. I didn’t know it at the time. They were down the end of the cul-de-sac, across a yard or two and several fences. Actually they were on a separate street altogether. I would probably never have noticed them were it not for their incessantly barking little yap dog. It is one of these high-pitched little shrieks that cuts through any sensibilities whatsoever and sends chills up my spine.
I immediately set out to find said annoyance, to somehow with sheer will and determination cause it to be silent. Tracing the affronting sound by triangulation I homed in on a tenement home that looked like it’s lawn would be a perfect parking spot for a semi truck. I pounced on the first visible human, a boy of about 10 and he said that the dog was barking because “he sees us.” His mom was emptying groceries from the car, and immediately forgot how to speak English. She smiled up and simply said “I don’t know.” Although it did occur to me that if the barking was caused by the sight of the family inside, that wouldn’t explain the barking all day when they were away, Short of requesting that they become invisible so that the dog wouldn’t see them I felt that my presence there was of little value.
The dog barks on (even as I write) and no-one else in the neighborhood seems to have a problem with it. I have had it. I must dutifully adopt my zen state and be one with the barking until it bothers me no longer. It is not acceptable for me to be the only one getting irritated. This really seems messed up to me, but damned if I’m going to let my shorts get all in a knot if no-one else is.
Ever have an employee in a nearby cubicle or office that talks through walls? Talks to themselves, and insists on using speaker on the phone at the top of their lungs? If you let them bother you, you can find barking dogs anywhere.


The worth of a treasure


We’ve all had a favorite.  It might be the first love, first car, best employee… whatever.  The question eventually arises, when to let go.  I went to Germany in 1985 and purchased a mint condition BMW from a lot in Frankfurt.  After all the mêlée involved in getting my “baby” back to the states and made legal I was hooked.  After having several company cars and storing the Beemer in the garage for years it was still in Bristol condition, except for the accessories.  Sun roof handle broke off, muffler rattles, dashboard starts to crack, etc..  There came a time when I had to admit that I was prizing my memories more than being present with what was.

In any entrepreneurial environment we have “champions” who have been with us from the start that we consider invaluable.  It’s a hard thing to know when they have outlived their service and need to be replaced.

The person that bought my “baby” ended up smashing it beyond recognition before paying me the balance of what was owed.  I have also seen out-dated employees “rule the roost” to the demise of their benefactors.

What has your experience been?


Get out of your own way

Our 88-year-old gardener recently retired after being with my family for as long as I can remember.  The yard around my Triplex isn’t huge, so I never bothered to replace him.  I figured the gardening is a bit of exercise and lots of therapy so I’d take it on myself.  I got the lawns mowed and trimmed early in the week and blew off the sidewalks quickly into the gutters, figuring that I would finish the job this weekend. 

All that remains is to blow out the gutters and pick up the pile. Only problem was that on Sat. morning there was a car parked right in the spot I use to assemble the leaves to pick them up.  It is possible to work around it, but not preferable.  I’ll wait.  Sat. afternoon arrives and same deal, the car is still there.  Sunday morning, same car.  This is getting on my nerves by Sunday afternoon so I started complaining to my wife. Being the straightforward oracle that she is, she just looked up me and said words I shall not soon forget:  “Why don’t you just move your car?”

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