Monday, September 30, 2013

What do you know?

I am sure you know a marketer who reads all the marketing, branding, advertising books that was ever published.

And I am pretty sure, you know a marketer who can tell you all the techniques and case studies there are in order for your brand to be successful. 

Knowing is the beginning, doing gets you there. Knowing what to ignore focuses you.

“The art of knowing is knowing what to ignore.” - Rumi  

What should you ignore?

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Friday, September 27, 2013

Thursday, September 26, 2013

What are you going after?

While I agree that you should not take your competitors for granted, it is also true that you should not be distracted by each and everything your competitor does.

Truly understand your marketing objectives and how you will get there. Take into consideration things your competitors does that will throw you off your target. And this obviously doesn’t mean everything. So have a way of analyzing things your competitor does. Make a decision and move on. 

"When you are hunting elephants, don’t get distracted chasing rabbits." 
- T. Boone Pickens

Are you easily distracted?

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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

How much can you learn?

Depends on you, really. You know that already but worth repeating.

Doesn’t matter what line you are in – if you want to be a professional, you need to learn to be self-taught. That means taking the initiative to learn things on your own.

You have left school. You cannot be spoon-fed anymore. Even more so if there are training programs where you are and you have a mentor-protégé relationship where you are working now (and consider yourself lucky).

If you are the unlucky one, then you are forced to self-learn - which will lead you to be lucky in getting better than your peers.

Pick things up on your own. Learn to solve problems without being taught. That’s how professionals behave. 

Stop being a student. Start being a professional.

How much should be taught?

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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Is this serious business?

Anytime you pay someone for an opinion, you have to take it seriously. As in decide if it is worth it to pay money for the expert advice. Otherwise, it is better to rethink.

Not just for communications consultant or brand consultants or your ad agency. Think doctors, tax consultants, engineers and the experts you know. If you are willing to part good money to get the opinion, it would stand to reason that it is serious business.

If it is serious business then think about the things you want to do when the advice is given. Not brush it aside.

If you are going to pay the hepatologist, the accountant, the engineer, the architect, the lawyer good money for their advice why brush it aside just because it does not fit what you know or think?

How trivial do you think it is?

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Monday, September 23, 2013

What if you listened?

Here’s a thought - if you have not already thought about it. 

What if you listened to all the complaints about your competitors and structure a plan to address those complains with your brand?

After all, it’s all free for you to access on social media to mine. You will know what their frustrations are and if your competitor even cares about them.

Maybe you will find some treasure there?

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Friday, September 20, 2013

What do you do well?

Nowadays you hear more clients starting their own in-house design team or "internal agencies". Some could be due to cost and others probably because they feel it is faster. 

Cheaper and faster doesn’t mean better. That we all know.

Is it even strategic for your business? You should focus on your business and let the experts help you focus on your business. Like help you strategize and conceptualize. Starting to do everything in-house may give you a sense of control but I liken it to the entrepreneur who wears all the hats in order to save cost. Is It going to be sustainable and how does it add to growing your business?

What business are you in?

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Thursday, September 19, 2013

What did you do recently?

Doesn’t really matter what is it that you want to measure, choose something to measure. If you can choose an aspect of your life to measure some form of achievement, what would it be?

You are forced to do an evaluation every year on your work and you likely struggled through it, thinking of words to use so that it does not sound like last year’s evaluation. Now imagine you have to do one for other parts of your life. Like physically, how have you made yourself healthier? Emotionally and spiritually, how’s that area been lately? 

Chase something that has meaning. And don’t just chase one thing.

How have you been? 

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Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Are you going to be a monk?

There will come a time when you will devour every book on managing skills and leadership principles. Or your time may have passed. You will try to practice everything and get sucked into mindless debates about the differences between a manager and a leader. Chances are it is all in vain to improve your skills as a manager and/or a leader.

I believe regardless of what you want to be or improve, the key is being mindful. Mindful of the “whys” you do the things you do and be truthful to yourself. Mindfulness is the seed of change.

Then be courageous to change those stress causing actions even if your ego is going to take a beating.

If you are mindful of your thoughts, courageous to change your actions, then the lessons will teach you to be a better whatever you want to be.

You won’t need to be a monk. Neither do you have to sell your Ferrari. 

Do you have to sell your Ferrari?

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Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Is your story still good enough?

I am talking about your personal story. Not the story you carve for your brand. We all have our own story. Stories we sell to our peers, bosses, staff and the industry.

The story you told and we bought brought you here. Will it bring you where you want to be? 

I think beyond that you need to look at your own narrative and what is it that you don’t like about it. Or better yet, even your personal evangelist do not like about it.  

There is an opportunity to write a better part of the story there. 

That’s your chance to be better than the you today. 

What are you telling yourself?

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Friday, September 13, 2013

Who do you want to please?

You can’t please everyone - whether you are selling a product, convincing someone with your idea, or spreading your religion.

Knowing this you should know to ignore those who do not matter. Picking those who matter is sometimes challenging, but you will learn once you decide to start choosing some to ignore.

Ignoring them is pain relief.

When will the fun begin?

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Thursday, September 12, 2013

How hungry are you?

A friend of mine who is a medical professor posted the other day that curiosity is the key to a successful medical career. I suspect it works for other fields too.

Curiosity should be your intellectual hunger and thirst. You just have to keep on looking for its food to satisfy that pang.

You will be fat with knowledge and experience.

How do you feed your brain?

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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Who are you talking to?

Sometimes you don’t need focus groups. You just need to focus on a particular group.

Choose a group, make a decision about it and dig every damn insight you can find. 

Focus groups or otherwise, focus on a particular group first. 

How do you get to know them?

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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Monday, September 9, 2013

Who’s teaching you?

What new things are you learning lately? I mean purposeful learning of something you are interested, could help in your work or make you a more interesting person. Not the “Oh, I learned something new today.”

What should you learn?

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