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The Myth of a Salesman

Marketing podcast with Dan Pink My father was a salesman in the classic Willy Loman kind of way, without the sad tragedy part. He got up each week, packed his bags and went on the road to exchange his time and information for the monetary reward of an order. Show More Summary

Building a Business Means Building a Community

A few weeks back, Becky McCray got me thinking about the difference between building a community and building an audience, and the idea that most businesses think they are doing the former when they are really doing the latter. This week, John Jantsch has me thinking about community again and the idea that community may actually be more [...]

Likeable Is Not a Department

Marketing podcast with Dave Kerpen Dave Kerpen had the foresight a few years ago to lock up the term Likeable. It’s the name of his business, Likeable Media, the name of his mega selling book Likeable Social Media and it’s been applied to his latest work, Likeable Business. Show More Summary

Business Insiders

Business Insider EIC Henry Blodget In a previous post, I recounted the myriad conferences one might attend to catch a glimpse of today's media, tech, and marketing punditocracy. While client obligations have forced me to be more judicious...Show More Summary

The Formula for Business Success

As I was preparing to interview EyeTrackShop’s Jeff Bander for this week’s episode of Marketing Smarts, I did what I usually do: I Googled him. And the first result was Jeff’s LinkedIn profile. Now, when I interview folks on Marketing Smarts, although I have generally checked them out on LinkedIn before doing so, I rarely ask [...]

Talking Tech, Media & PR Heads

It's next to impossible to keep track of all the tech, media, advertising and PR industry events that occur during any given month. On the horizon are CES, which continues to reign supreme for consumer tech and electronics buffs, while South By Southwest (SXSW) does the same for interactive, music and film aficionados. Show More Summary

Power Seduction War and Mastery

Marketing podcast with Robert Greene It’s funny how pretty much everything is instructional in one way of another. When Robert Greene published the now cult classic The 48 Laws of Power people were a bit polarized. According to LA Times...Show More Summary

What’s the Difference Between Building a Community and Building an Audience?

It always strikes me as a little misguided to hear marketers talk about their “audience.” First of all, unless you are a performer or an orator, the people to whom you are hawking your wares are not an audience except in a metaphorical sense. Second of all, that metaphorical sense itself betrays a misunderstanding of how marketing [...]

Create More Than Just Community; Create a Scene

When I introduced Boston University’s Dean Kenn Elmore to the folks who joined us in Boston for the live recording of this week’s episode of Marketing Smarts, I said that I wanted to discuss the myriad ways that he had used social media to build community at the university. But when I addressed this with the Dean, he [...]

Reexamining Why You’re In Business

Marketing podcast with Harley Manning (Click to play or right click and “Save As” to download – Subscribe now via iTunes or subscribe via other RSS device (Google Listen) I think most of us would agree that the reason our businesses exist is to exchange value with a customer for payment. Show More Summary

Get Out of Your Bubble and Explore the Larger World

Twice while I was speaking with Rohit Bhargava for this week’s episode of Marketing Smarts, he stressed the importance of getting out of the “bubble.” He mentioned this first when I thanked him for citing the black, lesbian, feminist poet and activist, Audre Lorde, whose work I usually don’t find mentioned in business books. After thanking me [...]

Can We Really Predict Brand Success?

“There’s no secret formula to marketing and to working on strategy.” That’s what branding consultant Laura Ries told me when I interviewed her for the most recent episode of Marketing Smarts, and I absolutely agree with her (though I also thought, “Isn’t that EXACTLY what someone who KNEW the formula would say?”). I believe the same [...]

Business Is Not a Democracy: You Need a Decider

“Everybody should have a voice, but not everybody should have a vote.” That’s what Tom Fishburne told me when I asked him about ways that organizations could harness the creative potential of their teams without getting bogged down or distracted by the wealth of ideas that groups come up with. Fishburne’s view was that, to put it one [...]

How to Grow Giant Prize Winning Pumpkins

Marketing podcast with Mike Michalowicz (Click to play or right click and “Save As” to download – Subscribe now via iTunes or subscribe via other RSS device (Google Listen) Okay, I’ll admit the title of this post is a bit odd for a marketing blog, but it relates specifically to the title of a book [...]Show More Summary

Stop Fussing Over Your Content!

“All is flux.” – Heraclitus Years ago, when the company I was working for was going through yet another website makeover, someone commented that such makeovers were rarely the result of customer feedback. To use a popular meme: “I would do more business with you if you would just change the color palette and font on [...]

Why Social Media Makes Perfect Sense for B2B Companies

“B2B has always been about the relationship sale. What social media does is help scale those relationships.” That’s what Kipp Bodnar told me when I interviewed him for this week’s episode of the Marketing Smarts podcast. His comment got me thinking. As “sexy” as social media is (if it still is sexy; it’s also possible that social media [...]

There’s Never Been a Better Time To Be an Entrepreneur

Marketing podcast with Phil Auerswald (Click to play or right click and “Save As” to download – Subscribe now via iTunes or subscribe via other RSS device (Google Listen) Here’s my take. There is no resource scarcity issue, dependence on oil, shortage of water, climate change, political gridlock or disease treatment that can’t be solved [...]Show More Summary

SAP’s Brenner on Content Strategy and Challenges (and Pay-for-Performance Advertising)

“Brands needs to start delivering effective content to their marketplace,” Michael Brenner, senior director of global marketing and content strategy at SAP, told me during this week’s episode of Marketing Smarts. “Otherwise, they’reShow More Summary

Three Reasons Your Content Is Booooooring (and Ideas for Energizing It)

The long-time slogan of the Swiss publishing house, Diogenes Verlag, was simple and cheeky: Diogenes books are less boring. (Of course, they said it in German, “Diogenes Bücher sind weniger langweilig.”) What I’ve always admired about the slogan was that the company didn’t gild the lily—books ARE boring, everyone know this—but, instead, Diogenes Verlag humbly promised [...]

Best-Practices Are Mythical (but They Do Serve a Purpose)

After interviewing Maddie Grant back in May, I wrote a post that asked, “Are best-practices evil?” I was prompted to ask the question because Maddie and her co-author Jamie Notter had said as much in their book, Humanize. I return to the subject once more because in the new book, The Rebel’s Guide to Email Marketing, [...]

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