Category Archives: Market

The worst voice of the brand *is* the brand by Seth Godin

The worst voice of the brand *is* the brand
By Seth Godin
April 3, 2011

We either ignore your brand or we judge it, usually with too little information. And when we judge it, we judge it based on the actions of the loudest, meanest, most selfish member of your tribe.

When a zealot advocates violence, outsiders see all members of his tribe as advocates of violence.

When a doctor rips off Medicare, all doctors are seen as less trustworthy.

When a fundamentalist advocates destruction of outsiders, all members of that organization are seen as intolerant.

When a soldier commits freelance violence, all citizens of his nation are seen as violent.

When a car rental franchise rips off a customer, all outlets of the franchise suffer.

Seems obvious, no? I wonder, then, why loyal and earnest members of the tribe hesitate to discipline, ostracize or expel the negative outliers.

“You’re hurting us, this is wrong, we are expelling you.”

What do you stand for?

Reprinted with permission from the author

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Using “Constant Contact” to Market Abstract Art

Using “Constant Contact” to Market Abstract Art
By Lynne Taetzsch

(Andrew Spriegel) – I asked Lynne to write this article because not only does she create amazing art but she also does a great job at marketing her work.  Her artwork and art books are collected worldwide.  “Constant Contact” is a paid service provider that helps their customers build stronger customer relationships with professional-looking email newsletters.  Lynne uses “Constant Contact” to promote her business.

(Lynne Taetzsch) When I first started accumulating the email addresses of art lovers interested in my abstract paintings, I kept it as a “group” in my email address book.  But of course, as the list grew, there was no way to send a group email without my message being blocked from many mailboxes.  Plus, as I changed computers and software, it was hard to manage that list.

(Andrew Spriegel – I am one of Lynne’s fans and I have the painting below in my law firm.  The photos are great but the don’t give a true perspective of  the amazing textures and vibrancy of the colors in her works)

(Lynne Taetzsch) Constant Contact came to the rescue.  It offers safe emailing to any size group of business prospects.  People who receive Constant Contact email trust their brand and know they can easily opt out of getting any more emails from me if they so choose.

Constant Contact allows me to maintain my email lists on their site, dividing them into any number of specialized groups.  I have one for “art lovers” for example, for those who have expressed an interest in my art; and another for “art collectors,” those who have purchased my art.  I also have a list for “designers & galleries” in case I want to send a special message to the trade.

Once my lists are up to date on Constant Contact, I can easily send a group email, selecting from any number of pre-designed formats including a newsletter or plain business letter.  I can also insert images of my art and links to any number of pages on my website.  Once I’m completely satisfied with the project, I can then select the email groups I want to receive the message and schedule the date and time to send it.

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Innovators and Genius in Ohio: Andrew R. Thomas PhD

Interview with New York Times Best Selling Author Andrew R. Thomas PhD
by Andrew R. Spriegel
January 24, 2010

Where did you receive your PhD?

University of Bucharest, Academy of Economic Studies, in International Business. A substantial portion of the funding was provided by the U.S. State Department under a Fulbright Scholarship.

How did you become an author?

After I left the transportation business, I wrote my first book on global business strategy. I enjoyed the process – as well as having authored – so I wrote another one; and then another, and another…

How many books have you published?

Authored, co-authored, or edited 15.

What awards have you won?

The Berry-AMA Prize for the best book in marketing for 2010 (The Distribution Trap).

In 2008, my book Direct Marketing in Action was a finalist for this same award.

In 2003, The Rise of Women Entrepreneurs: People, Processes, and Global Trends selected as Harvard Business School’s Working Knowledge Recommended Book on Entrepreneurship.

In 2002, Global Manifest Destiny: Growing Your Business in a Borderless Economy selected as Harvard Business School’s Working Knowledge Recommended Book on Global Marketing.

I am most proud that in 2006, I was selected as the Phi Eta Sigma Student’s Choice Award for Favorite Faculty Member at the University of Akron.

What is the American Marketing Association’s Berry Award?

The Berry-AMA Book Prize for the Best Book in Marketing recognizes books whose innovative ideas have had significant impact on marketing and related fields.  Created by distinguished author and professor Leonard L. Berry and his wife Nancy F. Berry through generous contributions to the American Marketing Association Foundation (AMAF), the prize was awarded for the first time in Fall 2002.

Please tell me about your new book “The Distribution Trap”?

The premise is simple: too many inventions today are left in the hands of others to determine their value in the marketplace. This flawed business approach has enabled Mega distributors to rise up in every sector and control those same sectors. This has lead many innovative products and services to become commodities almost overnight.

What does it mean “marketers of innovations should control the channel themselves”?

To create something requires a huge investment in time, money, thought, sweat, and tears. It flies in the face of reason that once the invention is created, control over the sales and distribution of that invention is given over to a third party, which has no stake and very little real interest in whether it succeeds or fails. It is not logical. But it is what the management “gurus”, business professors, and other thought leaders have told inventors they must do to be successful.

I understand you are quite the world traveler.

I’ve been fortunate to have traveled and conducted business in more than 120 countries on all 7 continents.

How much do you use social networking?

Not much. I do have a LinkedIn account and a Facebook account, although I check them every few days. I prefer a personal visit or a phone call.

If you had to live your life over what would you do differently?

I have never had that question asked to me before. And, I’ve never thought about it, until now. I am totally cool with my life and everything that’s happened to me.

The success rate for inventions is estimated to be less than one half of one percent; I attribute that a high percentage of failures can be attributed to poor marketing.  Would you agree?

I would. From my experience, the way an invention is marketed and sold is so often much more important than the quality of the invention itself.

 

Andrew R. Thomas PhD

Title: Assistant Professor of Marketing and International Business
Department: Department of Marketing
Office: CBA 321
Phone: (330)972-7119
Fax: 330-972-5798
Email: art@uakron.edu
Website: http://www.AirRage.org

The Berry-AMA Book Prize recognizes books whose innovative ideas have had significant impact on marketing and related fields.

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Why would you as a firefighter want to use a patent attorney that is a professional fire fighter and an Inventor?

Why would you as a firefighter want to use a patent attorney that is a professional fire fighter and an Inventor?
by Andrew Spriegel
January 12, 2011

Many of the advances made in firefighting and EMS equipment and training have been made by firefighters and paramedics.  So if you are one of the numerous firefighter/EMS inventors, who do you go to write a patent to protect your idea?  Paul Filon, full-time lieutenant and paramedic in the Strongsville Fire Department and a licensed and registered Patent Attorney with the United States Patent and Trademark Office.  Paul works at Spriegel & Associates, LLC (Patent & Trademark Attorneys) in Hudson, Ohio, http://www.Smart2Patent.com.

In addition to working as an EMT/paramedic for 22 years and a firefighter for 16 years, Mr. Filon is also chemistry specialist and Haz-Mat technician for the regional Haz-Mat and bomb teams.  He is experienced in several technical rescue disciplines and teaches a variety of firefighter and EMS classes.

Spriegel & Associates, LLC is gaining a reputation as working with firefighters, Captain Phil McLean is one of their clients and one of those inventor/firefighter types that owns Sensible Products Inc. (www.senpro.net), in Richfield, Ohio.  Phil and his business partner, retired Fire Chief, Russ English are quality manufacturers of unique holders and bracketry for fittings, adapters, brass goods and tools mounted on fire trucks.  Here is what Phil has to say about working with Paul:

I have worked with Paul Filon on several occasions related to product development. With his Fire Service background and knowledge of Emergency Services it made the development and patent process easy for me and my company as we were developing a new product in the business. He is an energetic worker and has a passion for all the work and all of his professions.  His multi-professional experience was and continues to be an asset to our project.

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The Pet Rock was more than a gag or fad it was a brilliant marketing strategy

The Pet Rock was more than a gag or fad it was a brilliant marketing strategy

By Andrew Spriegel
January 16, 2011

Nothing is as easy or as simple as it seems.  How times have you heard someone say “A guy made millions selling pet rocks.”

Marketing, Marketing and More Marketing

In inventing, retail and service businesses, success or failure often depends on marketing.

Gary Dahl, a Los Gatos, California advertising professional was in a bar in 1975 with his friends who were complaining about their pets.   Dahl, as a joke told his friends that he considered dogs, cats, birds, and fish messy, not well-behaved and they cost too much money,  he had a pet rock.  His “pet” was clean, well-mannered, easy to care for, required no expensive foods required no feeding, bathing, walking, grooming, was well-behaved, had an even temperament, would not grow elderly or pass away or become sick.  They were the perfect pets, and Gary joked about it with his friends.  However, he soon took the idea seriously, and went home and started to write an instruction manual for a pet rock.  The manual was full of jokes and gags that referred to the inanimate rock as a pet.

Dahl quit his job to launch Rock Bottom Productions, the company that sold the pet rocks for $3.95 per “pet”.   Marketing, packaging and shipping the pet rock like live pets, in cardboard, pet carrier boxes, with straw for the rock to rest on and breathing holes.  Large volume sales only lasted about six months, however sales made Dahl a millionaire.

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Innovators and Genius in Ohio – Daniel Moneypenny

Innovators and Genius in Ohio – Daniel Moneypenny
Daniel Moneypenny
by Andrew R. Spriegel
January 14, 2011

Daniel Moneypenny has transformed the English language into a revenue proposition, and he has done so on behalf of some of the world’s most powerful corporations. Daniel is a master of positioning statements, tagline, corporate & product naming, ad campaign development, along with his full spectrum ideation services for Fortune 50 & 100 clients.

Daniel is President and Chief Creative Officer of his branding/ideation firm, Emaginit that he founded over 25 years ago. Countless clients worldwide rely on emaginit for Moneypenny’s unique branding, potent phraseologies, and marketing stratagems. On any given day, he can create 100-200 branding entities for a specific client. These C-Suite clients have provided hundreds of written testaments to the effectiveness of his unconventional approach – from Dow AgroSciences and Pepsi to Time Warner.

Daniel has traveled far and wide developing branding & ideation elements. Exxon says he’s “extraordinarily gifted in turning a phrase into a great advantage.” Citicorp calls him a “man of ambition and integrity.” Procter & Gamble calls him the “Swiss Army Knife” of creative consultants.” Daniel cuts through immense information clutter to reach targeted audiences with a keen ability to connect viable words/phrases to products and new companies. In an over-communicated marketplace, his has an extraordinary skill, one that virtually ensures market share. He led Diebold’s ATM hardware and software branding launches across 26 countries. In addition to spearheading Amway’s branding efforts by developing 47 consecutive successful branding assignments throughout Europe, Japan and domestically. Emaginit continues to build its vast database, that currently holds in excess of 1,000,000 branding entities. He believes that intellectual property will become the new currency. So much so, emaginit is launching its own IP division to insure conception to consumption continuity.

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Pricing a Business for Sale Opportunity

by Kipp Krukowski
January 03, 2011

Pricing a small business for sale opportunity is something that needs to be carefully considered.  Some business owners believe that the best method to maximize their price is to start high and then lower the price if it doesn’t get enough activity.  In theory, this sounds like a good idea…because why would you want to sell a business for less money than what someone is willing to pay?  However, this is not a good strategy at all when it comes to selling a business.

I like to equate pricing a business for sale opportunity to the “dating scene”.  When you are single and looking to find a connection with someone, you may only have one opportunity to impress the “right one”.  If you mess up the opportunity to connect with the individual when you have the opportunity, they may never cross your path again and might even connect with someone else.

Picture a situation where a seller offers the business at an inflated price.  When buyers are looking on the internet for business for sale opportunities and see that the price is not realistic, they will likely not inquire on the business.  Others may inquire but then as they start to review the information, they will realize that the seller is not realistic in their expectations and move on.  Some buyers may even go as far as putting in an offer on the business with the hopes that the seller will become more realistic during negotiations, only to become frustrated with the results.  In all three of these cases, the “right one” may slip through and not purchase the business.

Fast forwarding the example, after months or even years without getting a buyer to the closing table, the seller decides to reduce the price to a more realistic price.  At that time, the seller may have exhausted a number of the best prospects. Some are not interested in returning to look at the opportunity because they wasted time, and possibly money, on pursuing it in the past. Others may have found another business opportunity that suited them better since they were able to work out a deal with a realistic, motivated seller.

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