Friday, October 2, 2015

Discrimination: How to Make It Work for You

Discrimination doesn’t have to be a bad thing.

A while ago, I wrote about what My Socks Made Me Think about Discrimination.

In that post, I mention how I sort my socks.  I find the ones that are more different than any of the others.  In other words, I try to find the socks that are easier for me to notice.

Let’s pay attention to that last part of the sentence, “easier for me to notice.”

When you’re the different one

Over the years, I’ve made an observation from my own experiences.

Monday, July 6, 2015

Prediction: Minions Brand Will Spike…Then Spiral

I have a prediction.  In the short-term, the brand surrounding the Minions will spike, but in the long-term, it will drop…quickly and to great depths.  It will become a fad that will become laughable.

It doesn’t have to be this way, but it will be.  However, ultimately, this new Movie “Minions” will kill the brand.  That’s my prediction!

Trailer: New Movie: Minions (Prequel to Despicable Me)

As I write this today, the Minions have an AWESOME brand.

Unless you’ve been living underneath a rock, you’ve heard of those adorable Minion creatures.  Heck, even if you DO live underneath a rock, you’ve probably heard of them…and most likely seen something with them in it.

Those adorable tiny yellow Minions were introduced to us via a couple of hit movies: “Despicable Me” and its sequel “Despicable Me 2.”

Those movies were great, and they’ve done a lot for the Minions brand.

Still, I predict that their brand will plummet, but it doesn’t have to be this way.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

The Way We Learn vs. The Way We Teach

Many people get really frustrated when others “don’t get it.”

“I TOLD him (or her), already, but he (or she) just doesn’t listen!”

While there are some people that aren’t born with much common sense and would fail to understand fire if it burned them, most people prefer to “get it.”  Amazingly, many don’t.

I know this, because I’ve been this person many more times than I care to relive in my mind.

I think I know the main reason why many people don’t “get it.”

Monday, April 13, 2015

9 Reasons FaceBook Might Get You Fired

For quite a while, human resource workers and hiring managers have been digging dirt on prospective candidates by looking at their social media posts, like FaceBook and Twitter.  Who knows how many people lost on an otherwise great job opportunity simply because of using poor discretion with things they post for the entire world to see.

Not only do people lose on job opportunities, some people have been FIRED because of things they posted on FaceBook or some other social media site.  There are things that seem evident to me, but I hear about things people do on there (I try to avoid FaceBook, myself!) that just plainly baffle me.

Honestly, from things I hear, I’m surprised even more people aren’t fired.

Just in case you need it, here is a quick list of reasons I might fire you (or your friend) based on FaceBook posts.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Business Feature: Anna Lynn’s Bakery & Chocolates - Metro Detroit – Lynn Montry

Continuing my series of interviewing businesses to hear from the owners directly, I interviewed someone I met at a networking event over a year ago.  She caught my attention since I love nearly anything sweet.  (I know that they are not good for me, but this is not a blog about nutrition.) She has a unique angle, because she not only makes things edible that taste good, but she is an artist.  So these look as good as they taste.

This Week’s Featured Business: Anna Lynn’s Bakery & Chocolates (Westland, MI)

Lynn Montry moved to Michigan from California, and she learned the hard way that her California business was not going to work in the Metro Detroit Area of Michigan.  So she changed her business into selling cakes and chocolates, but these are different.  She stayed true to her artist’s roots, but today she creates edible art.

If you would rather read than watch a video, below I provide some of her background and summarize the notes I took during my interview with her.  She works full-time; so she has some unique challenges and insight.

An Introduction to Anna Lynn’s Bakery & Chocolates

Sunday, March 15, 2015

7 Reasons Why You’re Being Lazy

Believe it or not, MOST of us really don’t want to do a bad job.  We’d prefer to do a good job.  Not everybody but most of us want to do well, but…

Have you ever felt lazy?

Are you someone who people do not characterize as being lazy but find yourself being lazy, anyway?

I think I have a few explanations about why this happens.

See Also: 3 Ways to be Intelligently Lazy with Marketing Your Business

It’s true that some people will be lazy, no matter what, and without any doubt there are people who are more ambitious than others.  However, there are sometimes when all of us are lazy, no exceptions as far as I can see.

Many times, I’ve described myself as the hardest working lazy person on the planet.  (Yeah, you read that correctly!)  While there is some truth to this, most of the time, I notice that I’m lazy for one of these reasons.  I bet you are, too, even the most ambitious of you.  (You ordinarily ambitious folks might not ADMIT it, but I bet you’ll read this and identify with it.)

Here are seven (7) reasons you’re (probably) being lazy:

1. You aren’t properly trained.
2. You don’t have enough resources.
3. You’re not working efficiently.
4. You know it’s busy (useless) work.
5. You’re not a natural fit.
6. Your vision is not clear enough.
7. You’re not properly rested.

If you’re curious, let’s take a closer look at each one of these (if you’re not too lazy).

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Mark Maupin: How to Use Firefox to Get True Search Results on Google – Not Misleading SERPs

Here is a really cool trick using Firefox if you want to track your SEO campaign.

Mark Maupin is the marketing director of Right Now Marketing Group, and he has many clients throughout the United States.  The vast majority of his business clients represent service-related industries.

Google is the search engine most often used, and at well over 60% of all searches second place is not even close.

So for many businesses, it is important to rank well on Google, which the vast majority of business owners realize that today, but THERE IS SOMETHING THAT MANY PEOPLE DO NOT REALIZE:

Key Issue: You might think that your business is ranking well on Google, but in reality no one really sees it, except you!

What you see on your Google search results (SERPs) is not always the same as what other people are seeing.  That can create problems for company marketers and business owners.

Even if you type in a search phrase and see your own business ranking well on Google, it’s possible that nobody else can really see it.  There is a way to change that, though, so you can see how well you’re REALLY ranking:

In this quick video, Mark shows us a couple of tricks:

Summary of Steps

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Business Feature: Chris Tellis – Southfield-Based HVAC

As part of something I’m doing to feature different businesses and help provide additional sources of business tips from multiple perspectives, I’m featuring different companies or organizations.  This time, I interviewed a friend of mine who owns a heating and cooling (HVAC) business.  Not only is he a smart guy, but he has been in business for 19 years.  So he definitely has some wisdom to share.

This Week’s Featured Business: Chris Tellis, Owner of HVAC Business (Southfield, MI)

If you live anywhere near Metro Detroit, Chris Tellis might be the guy you call when you need to fix your heating or cooling.  Tellis did not begin owning his own business.  He worked as a Sales Manager for an ABC Warehouse store, but he discovered that he could make more money by owning and operating his own business.

He has a story to tell, and there are things we can learn from him, especially if we own a business or are interested in starting one.

Before starting his company, he worked in retail sales at Fretter and ABC Warehouse.

An Introduction to Chris Tellis and his HVAC Business

Sunday, March 8, 2015

A New, Easy On-Page SEO Marketing Idea (Borrowed from an Old Idea)

By accident, I found something valuable.

There is an older online marketing technique that offers quite a few benefits, and recently I found a way to extend that strategy: RSS Feeds.

RSS stands for Real Simple Syndication.  Operationally, it works two (2) ways.

Example of RSS Feed on my Blog Site: My site shows the most recent posts on the Social Media Examiner website. It's material not only shows on its site, but it syndicates on my site, too.

#1: RSS Feed: From You to Me: You can write something on a blog, article, news, or video site (or any other publishing site), and I can install an RSS Gadget/Widget showing your most recent posts that shows the titles, for sure, and maybe even the first sentence or two of each post.  Most RSS Feed gadgets show the last three (3) to seven (7) posts.

What is the benefit of putting RSS Feed from someone else on your site?

You get “free” information on your site.  Your site gets automatic updates, even if you never change YOUR information on your site.  Plus, if you show RSS Feed from sites that relate to your website, it makes your site more relevant.
#2: RSS Feed: From Me to You: The other direction is having YOUR RSS Feed on other people’s sites.  This means that people visiting other sites will see YOUR most recent blog, article, video, etc. titles (and possibly even a sentence or two) of what you post on your site.

How do you benefit from this?

Other people might come to your site after visiting other people’s sites.

There are many benefits to using RSS Feeds, but in this post, I want to discuss one specific SEO benefit.

When someone does a search on Google, often they are looking for someone to answer to a question.  (In fact, technical people use the word “query” instead of an internet or keyword search, meaning they are actually asking the search engine a question when they type in a search term.)

RSS Feeds: On-Page SEO Benefit

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

Mark Maupin: Dominating Local Searches for Service-Related Businesses

Mark Maupin is the marketing director of Right Now Marketing Group, and he has many clients throughout the United States.  The vast majority of his business clients represent service-related industries.

Regardless whether they hire him, Mark thinks all service businesses should know what he demonstrates here.

Mark did a screencast for us, and in this video, he walks through the mindset of a potential customer for someone looking to replace a window in the Metro Detroit Area, specifically Bloomfield Township.  He identifies ways people are searching for services they need (or want) and things businesses should do to check whether they are likely to be found by these people.

Here are my notes:

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Business Feature: Sam’s Automotive Waterford - Sam Hanna

As part of something I’m doing to feature different businesses and help provide additional sources of business tips from multiple perspectives, I’m featuring different companies or organizations.  This time, I interviewed my auto mechanic.  Not only  is he a nice guy, but his business is really successful.  Speaking (or writing) as his customer, I understand why.

This Week’s Featured Business: Sam Hanna of Sam’s Automotive (Waterford, MI)

Sam Hanna is from Iraq, and he is the face of Sam’s Automotive in Waterford (MI), and he runs a successful auto repair shop.

If you would rather read than watch a video, below I provide some of her background and summarize the notes I took from that interview at his shop.  Technically, it was after hours, but you’d never know it, as people still kept coming inside and making appointments.  So he’s doing something right, and I decided to take time to ask him.

An Introduction to Sam of Sam’s Automotive

Sunday, March 1, 2015

3 Ways to be Intelligently Lazy with Marketing Your Business

Few people really want to be described as “being lazy,” but there are sometimes it’s actually a smart thing to do.

It is NOT a good idea to be lazy if nothing is getting accomplished in the process.  Sometimes, we feel burnout and need to recharge our internal batteries.  When we’re feeling drained, this might be okay, but if we’re not drained and still not getting things done, that’s L-A-Z-Y in entirely the wrong way.

However, there is another way that many people are lazy but will almost never get that label.  These are the “hard workers.”  People who work hard complete a lot of activity, but they are only sometimes as productive as they could be.

Suggestion: Never be lazy about evaluating and focusing on your goal(s).

Maybe the only way to accomplish this is to keep doing exactly what you’re doing and work hard, but as a marketing guy, I have a few other ideas that you might want to consider…at least as far as marketing your business.

1. Hire (or Recruit) People to Help You
2. Testing & Tracking Data
3. Center of Influence Marketing

Let’s take a closer look at each of these.

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Mark Maupin: Getting Started in a Service-Related Business

Mark Maupin of Right Now Marketing Group provided some an important marketing tip for businesses that service clients at their locations within a service area.  Mark has given talks about online marketing, led workshops, and has been a sponsored speaker at national conventions.

He also created and sold a business using the techniques he suggests here within this video.

Goal: Discuss where you (or other service companies) should start marketing your business:

Mark’s Recent Internet Marketing Success Story

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Business Feature: DnV Jamaican Seasonings - Delphine Drake

I am trying to take part of an idea I got from Jeremy Miller’s blog format where he puts a business in the spotlight.  Jeremy Miller of Sticky Branding tends to target larger companies than I do, but I think it’s a great idea.

This Week’s Featured Business: Delphine Drake of DnV Jamaican Seasonings

Delphine Drake is from Jamaica, and she owns DnV Jamaican Seasonings.

If you like to get an authentic taste of Jamaica, you might be interested in how she got started and some business and marketing tips from her perspective.

If you would rather read than watch a video, below I provide some of her background and summarize the notes I took from that interview at her booth at Detroit’s Eastern Market.  (She even has that cool Jamaican accent!)

An Introduction to Delphine of DnV Jamaican Seasonings

Sunday, February 22, 2015

How a Great Marketing Campaign Worked for the Wrong Company

Burger King is a great company, but they might be making a mistake.

Most of the time, companies want to use an advertising campaign to drive traffic to their store.

Let it be known that I like plenty of things at Burger King, and I am not trying to start any debate about which fast food tastes the best.  Let’s face it; we’re not really picking ANY of them as our choice for our “Last Supper.”
Burger King is running a great ad campaign that could backfire.

Burger King is doing a lot of things right with one of its current marketing campaigns, but the company’s marketers overlooked one of the basic principles of business.

Currently, they have a really good deal: $1.49 for 10 chicken nuggets.

While I don’t work for Burger King’s headquarters or even at one of its many franchise locations, I’m pretty sure they are not selling their nuggets for a profit with this deal.

So why are they doing this?

I don’t know, for sure, but I speculate that this is a loss leader for them.

Burger King is really good at making its chicken nuggets look really tasty in its commercials, and they are running several different ads to promote this.  Plus, they are running this ad all of the time.

So they make something that looks really good for a really good price, and they’re making sure that people know about it.

Yeah, I agree.  That is definitely going to bring people into their stores.  Yes, they might not make a profit on selling THOSE nuggets (and might even lose a little, hence the term “loss leader”), but many people coming into Burger King stores to buy those nuggets will order other things that tend to generate much higher profit margins for them, like soda pop and fries.

So what’s wrong with this campaign?

Sunday, February 15, 2015

1 Ironic Thing about SEO Marketing Companies

SEO marketing companies play a strong role, but I noticed something really ironic about them…or I mean “us.”

It’s not my only business, but for years, I touted online marketing SEO service as a main part of my business.  After all, Google provides so much traffic for many businesses, and truthfully, while it has plenty of flaws, it’s a great model.

How many of us turn to the Internet to find someone who can do certain types of stuff for us?

It’s a great system, and it’s always a good idea to get in places where there is a lot of traffic.

So what’s the ironic part of SEO businesses?

Sunday, February 8, 2015

Directory Site Listings: A Recent Trend in Google for Services (Ignore at Your Own Risk!)

I spend a lot of time online paying attention to things people search, but I spend even more time checking out things that are ranking on Google.

NOTE: At the time I’m writing this, more people use Google to search than any other search engine, and #2 isn’t even close.  So I only really pay attention to Google.

I’m noticing a new trend.  When I use Google to search for services, I’m noticing a new business model.  Well, actually it’s an old business model with a modernized approach.

What is that trend?