Monday, June 30, 2014

Is it meaningful?

What you say about your brand.

Your advertising budget. 
How you connect with your consumer.  
Your contest prizes.
Your promotion.
Your price-off.
Your newsletter.
What you post on your social media. 

You get what I mean. 

Meaning before marketability.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Did you write it down?

Write. Write it down. Somewhere. Black ink, white paper. Nothing difficult about it.

Whether it is a brief, a plan or a dream.

If it is not written, it is not counted.

Writing clarifies thoughts. Writing helps you remember. It allows you to revisit. Writing is a commitment. It forces you to say, “Here this is what I think now.”

Writing allows you to see what you think and gives you permission to rearrange the same thoughts in an orderly manner.

Writing grants you the keys to the genealogy of your thoughts as they develop.

What’s with your fear of writing?

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Can you give me your opinion?

Of course I can. But whether I am willing depends on a few things.

Why do you want my opinion? Do you see me as an expert on the subject? How do I add value to the decision you will make? How seriously will you take my opinion?

Does it even matter?

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

What questions do you ask yourself?

What do you know about your brand? Have you written it down somewhere? If it is not written, it doesn’t count.

What is your greatest strength? What do your competitors think is your greatest weakness? What do you think is your greatest weakness? Are there any differences?

What are your brand objectives this year? How do they complement your marketing plan?

What didn’t work last year? How can it be better?

Just some questions considering that it is midyear.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Are they lying to you?

The moment you get paid to do what you love, it becomes a job. When it is a job there are expectations to meet, KPIs to deliver, clients/customers to make happy, suppliers to pay. 

Of course you can get paid doing what you love. Just remember that what you love when you get paid for it comes with pimples, acnes and warts. 

Are you lying to yourself?

Monday, June 23, 2014

How much of a newbie are you?

Not many people will argue if you say that the basics are important.

It is when one talks about ‘advanced’ that people will debate you. Somehow, ‘advanced’ seems to indicate complexity or the need for complexity. 

Being advance in a field can often times mean an even deeper understanding of the basics and how to apply them even in complex situations

Nothing complicated about that.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Do you know how it works?

Sometimes there is so much ‘intellectual dishonesty’ (in this context I am referring to pretending to know what you don’t know or pretending to know a lot of what you know very little of) in the meeting room that it can choke you. Yes, the smog of stupidity and dishonesty can leave you gasping for air. 

It’s easy to expose ‘intellectual dishonesty’ though. Just ask clarifying questions. Like “How does this work?” But intellectual dishonesty is usually met with anger even when the questions themselves seek to clarify and nothing else. Why? Mainly because the weakness is exposed and yes, you did not give ‘face.’ With no answers, the person who fakes capability or knowledge is confronted with a naked intellect. Sometimes they don’t like what they see especially when naked.

What you know and what you think you know are vastly different. Why? It’s easier to talk; you can add management sound bites and claptrap into what you think you know. But when you have to explain it, you have to truly know.

Who are you cheating?

Thursday, June 19, 2014

What’s your stance?

I know friends who will not change their opinions no matter what. Even in the face of new information. Sometimes, these people forget that an opinion about something isn't the same as holding on to principles. 

As my friend Derek Sivers said here in his article “Loving What I Used to Hate”, “We don't need to preserve our first opinions as if they are our pure, untarnished, true nature. They're often just ignorance or inexperience.”

The principle of not changing your opinion even when faced with new information should be questioned.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Is that the right dosage?

You often hear people say, “Something is better than nothing.”

Yes and no. Sure, some exercise is better than no exercise. But if you have already made it a point to put aside x amount of time to exercise, isn’t it better to pick one that gives you the best return on time invested for your goal? Even for exercise (or workouts), there is a specific dose that can best meet your stated goals.

Of course, if you have an ailment you need to cure, the proper dosage of drug is important to rid you off what keeps you in bed.

Advertising is the same. You need the proper dosage of budget to support your campaign goals.

It’s not difficult to understand. Like a patient with his prescription, the challenge is always whether you are compliant.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Are you certified?

You could be certified. But you weren't educated in the process of certification. What’s worse is that the process of certification made you ignorant and arrogant to further education.

Are you educated?

Monday, June 16, 2014

What do you believe in?

“To believe in something, and not to live it, is dishonest.” – Mahatma Gandhi.

Do your consultants do what they tell you to do?

Thursday, June 12, 2014

How stable is your platform?

Marketing and branding principles are just a set of ideas and instructions much like the software in your computer hardware.

This set of marketing instructions and ideas can be used across platforms i.e., organizations and personnel. Given that each platform has its own limitations and capabilities, you get mixed results even though the set of instruction is the same.

When you ask, “How come this isn't working as well with us?” perhaps it is not a software issue.

What operating system do you use?

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

How does your garden grow?

Imagine your brand as a plant in your garden of business. Branding then is the process of nurturing that plant to grow. What you spend time on grows.

If you threw a seed into the garden and expect it to grow, your results may be dismal. But if you spent time understanding the seed, the plant it can grow into and planned well for that growth, perhaps its fruits may turn out to be what you expect.

Is your garden full of weeds? 

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Can you fix your people?

A lot of brands face challenges that are more of a human resource issue than brand issues per se.

You know, people with the wrong aptitude, mismatch of skills, lack of passion, or utter devoid of marketing knowledge. These people sit in a position of power as clients not knowing that they are the cause of the problems to begin with. Sometimes when we consult on a project initiated by the bosses, it is patent that if people issues are fixed, then the brand issues will resolve themselves.

The wrong people in your marketing department is a formula for brand disease. But you already know that. In which case, you have a HR issue. Not a brand issue.

Do you have a human resource problem?

Monday, June 9, 2014

Do you want to build a brand?

If you want to build a brand, start by committing a healthy budget for this purpose Every. Single. Year. And stick to it. 

To many of you this may be a given. But you will be surprised. Committing a budget means spending. Spending is vulgar to a lot of business owners.

Investing behind your brand means spending. Spending demonstrates your commitment. Did I just say the F word? Yes, spend.

How much do you have?

Friday, June 6, 2014

What are you afraid of?

When someone is confronted with new information they do not understand, the easiest thing for them to do is to criticize and condemn.

For bosses, they need to be aware of the Luddite within them. And Luddism that is breeding within the organization.

Are you a Luddite?

Thursday, June 5, 2014

When will the seeds grow?

Experienced sales people know sometimes the harvest may not be good for the day like closing a deal is tougher and there are no solid appointments.

Experienced sales people also know that they should not just measure the success of the day by the fruits they reap. They also measure the success of the day by the seeds they sow.

How’s the harvest today? 

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

What experience do you have?

“I have news for you, son.  Being full of yourself for no reason whatsoever is the ticket to waste your twenties and possibly thirties. In training and in other aspects of your life.” - Pavel Tsatsouline.

What are you full of?

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

How much did you spend?

In terms of your time spent doing what you want to achieve, that is.

Your time investment today will turn into trophies tomorrow or of course the reverse is also true. It might turn into trash

The more time you spend, the higher the chances of you turning in a trophy.

Monday, June 2, 2014

What should you practice?

In every organization, in every marketing program there is something so simple yet sinister that you can focus on to bring the best results.

The challenge is to find the discipline to stick to it for results to happen. I will add the discipline to not question the simplicity but to give it time for results to happen.


What’s your simple and sinister?