Archive for June, 2013

How Do You Find and Target the Right Customers

Thursday, June 27th, 2013

We sponsor, and I present a session on marketing at, the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire’s Entrepreneurial Training Program; my session is on marketing. When I first spoke with the program’s director about the program he pointed out that one of the major missteps that he saw from participants was that they too broadly defined their target audiences. They generally felt that their products or services appealed to “everyone.” He was right. (more…)

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Narrowing Your Audience: Be Clear to Connect

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013

One of the key decisions that communicators must make is how to segment their audience. Segmenting is basically dividing the overall audience into groups–or segments–that share commonalities so that they can be targeted more specifically. For instance, if you’re a health care organization, you could segment your audience into: women and men. You might further segment the women into audiences of: women of child-bearing age, pre-menopausal women, menopausal women, elderly women. Even among these audiences there might be some need to further segment.

There are (at least) two key points to consider about segmentation:
(more…)

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LinkedIn Best Practices

Thursday, June 20th, 2013

For B2B (business to business) marketers, as well as job seekers, LinkedIn remains the most viable option when attempting to select the social media tools that will help generate the best results. Since we work exclusively with B2B marketers (most in the healthcare and not-for-profit arenas), LinkedIn is the tool we use most often and we’ve become very familiar with it and the ways it can be used to leverage online awareness and build connections to build reputation and generate inquiries and sales.

If you’re a B2B marketer, a business person hoping to build credibility and reputation online, or a job seekers, here are some tips that can help you best leverage the benefits of LinkedIn: (more…)

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Common Online Marketing Mistakes

Tuesday, June 18th, 2013

It seems that interest in online marketing is hotter than ever; every week it seems we get more questions from reporters, prospects and clients about do’s, don’ts and best practices of online communications. Last week we received a question about what we would view as the “Big 3” online marketing mistakes that we see businesses make, especially small businesses. (more…)

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Special Challenges for Service-Oriented Brands: It’s All About the People!

Tuesday, June 11th, 2013

Much of my work over the years has been with “service brands”–brands that are not tied to a particular product, but to the delivery of some type of service, like health care, legal services, educational services, energy services, engineering services, consulting services, etc.

Developing and maintaining a strong brand for a service organization is, in my opinion, significantly more challenging than developing and maintaining a strong brand for a product. Why? Because a service is less tangible, more ephemeral–and often involves multiple “touchpoints” that really determine the “brand experience.”

What makes a strong brand? (more…)

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Is Facebook Fading Away? Why Continually Monitoring All Communication Options is Important

Thursday, June 6th, 2013

Once upon a time, many, many years ago, advertising on network television was all the rage. That’s where the big brands connected with consumers and drove sales. And then the landscape became fractured. Cable networking emerged, offering a wide range of new opportunities for advertisers to reach more narrowly segmented markets. The same thing was happening in the print environment. And then, of course, the Internet emerged and the rest is history.

But what’s happening today in the communication world will also, ultimately, be history. And recent reports (more…)

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Does Thinking Outside the Box Require Being Outside the Box? Yes – An Outside Perspective Breeds Innovation

Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

Daniel Pink, one of the leading modern thinkers about work and the business environment, and the author of several books including, most recently, Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us, suggests in a recent The Telegraph article that we are more creative when solving other peoples’ problems. He presents the results of a very interesting experiment that demonstrates that a group of people working on a problem on behalf of someone else do far better than a group of people working on what they are told is their own problem.

Fascinating, but upon reflection, not all that surprising. In fact, (more…)

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