Getting Blogging: Customers Trust Transparent Experts

Every year Edelman releases its Trust Barometer report (Executive Summary) to measure consumer confidence in business and, if we’re taking a cue from Chris Brogan and Julien Smith, identify the biggest ‘trust agents’ helping them to make their decisions. This year the findings are getting some people wondering about the overall impact on social media.blogging

Social media has always ‘worked’ because people trusted the advice and recommendations of people ‘like them’ over the cold marketing they were accustomed to. They trusted that their friends and people who valued the same things were better able to help them make decisions than the absent CEO or marketing department of a company. However, thanks to the flood of noise and the emergence of large, impersonal social networks, people are losing trust in social connections and those ‘like them’. Instead, they’re leaning more towards experts, with a strong rise in the transparent CEO. Continue reading Getting Blogging: Customers Trust Transparent Experts

What Makes a Great Ad?

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What Makes a Great Ad?
Get the Most From Advertising in Local Publications

So you want to run an ad in your local newspaper or regional magazine? Either way, you’re spending from hundreds to thousands of dollars in what amounts to a marketing Hail Mary pass.

Think about it. You hope that people who have a need for your services will a) read the publication, b) notice your ad, c) read it, and d) actually call you. No matter how good your ad is, the chances of all this happening are microscopic, which is why corporations advertise in multiple publications. You don’t have that luxury, so how do you get the most from your ad and avoid wasting your money? Continue reading What Makes a Great Ad?

Five Green Business Trends For 2010

Five Green Business Trends For 2010Small businesses are no longer cutting edge by calling themselves ‘green.’ Big corporations like Wal-Mart and Nike down to the corner café are cultivating a greener image as consumer demand for environmentally responsible products and operations quickly goes mainstream.

What this means:  Businesses genuinely trying to limit their environmental toll must now work harder to authenticate their green practices and convince consumers they’re for real – not just throwing around green lingo.

The next phase of green business evolution will focus on businesses being more earnest an all-encompassing about their environmental sustainability practices and marketing. Here, then, are some green trends to pay attention to in 2010. Continue reading Five Green Business Trends For 2010

Will 2010 be the year of Start-Up America?

Will 2010 be the year of Start-Up America?On January 24th 2010, New York Times Columnist Thomas L. Friedman wrote an op-ed piece titled, ‘More (Steve) Jobs, Jobs, Jobs, Jobs,’ which gave advice to President Obama as he puts the finishing touches on this week’s State of the Union speech.

He wrote ‘We need to make 2010 what Obama should have made 2009: the year of innovation, the year of making our pie bigger, the year of ‘Start-Up America.’

He went on further to say, ’Obama should make the centerpiece of his presidency (this year) mobilizing a million new start-up companies that won’t just give us temporary highway jobs, but lasting good jobs that keep America on the cutting edge.’

Well Mr. Friedman, I believe you are spot on. While your editorial largely focused on exposing youth to entrepreneurship, which is absolutely needed, I think there should be a two-pronged approach with a focus on working professionals and academic innovators who are ready to start businesses right now. Continue reading Will 2010 be the year of Start-Up America?

Growing into Greatness: Defining the domain for your Personal Brand.

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Growing into Greatness
Defining the domain for your Personal Brand.

Your Personal Brand isn’t designed for an “audience.” It’s designed for a domain, or sphere of influence – a group of people, organizations or companies with a common connection or focus.

The Domain Difference
An audience is everyone who is aware of your Personal Brand. A domain represents the people you want to reach with your Personal Brand – people who would have direct interest in your skills and services. Marketing your Personal Brand to a domain helps you capture greater market share, spend Personal Marketing dollars more efficiently, and make more money servicing fewer clients. Continue reading Growing into Greatness: Defining the domain for your Personal Brand.

Make ‘Slow Times’, ‘Grow Times’: Use your Personal Brand to thrive in a tough market.

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Make “Slow Times”, “Grow Times”:
Use your Personal Brand to thrive in a tough market.

Does a bear market directly affect your career? Depending on your line of work, it might determine your income. In uncertain times, your Personal Branding and Marketing may make the difference between starving and surviving.

Let’s discuss the Bear Necessities – the actions you must take to continue to grow and maintain your business. In a bull market, you need good marketing to grow. In a bear market, you’re going to need great marketing to survive. Continue reading Make ‘Slow Times’, ‘Grow Times’: Use your Personal Brand to thrive in a tough market.

The Nuts & Bolts of Online Personal Branding

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Marketing yourself based the products and services you sell might seem like the most logical approach in the world, but consumers do not make buying decisions based on logic. People hire professionals who they like and can relate to, not portfolios of products and/or services. To generate better results and greater profits from your branding, you’ve got to make that personal connection. Nothing achieves it more effectively than Personal Branding. Continue reading The Nuts & Bolts of Online Personal Branding