Marketing Lesson From The Beatles

    As part of their marketing plan, many of our clients do public seminars. Occasionally, out of a set of three seminars, one will have a very light registration, say, one or two attendees. In those circumstances our clients will often ask, "Should we just cancel?" And I always respond with a resounding "NO!".
Images_12    There are several reasons. First, you just never know who those one or two people might be, or how motivated they are. One of our clients once had a seminar with only five attendees. All five signed up and became clients, generating immediate fees of about $25,000. Another of our clients had a business planning seminar scheduled and only one person registered. At my urging, the client (and his partner) went to the seminar (grumbling). The one attendee turned out to be a CPA who represented 20 contruction firms. It became a huge account for my clients.
    There’s an old sports saying, "you always dress for the game." And that is what I believe. You will never be able to guess which event, or which person, will turn out to be extraordinary. The only way to make sure you don’t miss out is to be absolutely consistent, to always dress for the game, and always make your best effort, no matter how unlikely the prospects.
    Recently, I read The Beatles: The Biography by Bob Spitz. One of the stories that struck me was that of Dick Rowe, the head of A&R (sort of the chief talent scout) for Decca Records.

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Trick Question

Which is the greater? Spending on ads for the ABC, CBS, and NBC TV networks, or spending on Internet advertsing, including Pay Per Click? A PricewaterhouseCoopers study estimated that ’05 Internet ad spending could reach $12 bil, up from $9.6 bil last year. By contrast, combined ad revenue for the ABC, CBS and NBC TV networks fell 21.5% in Q3 vs. a year ago to $2.2 bil, according to an industry trade group. What percentage of your own marketing dollars are going to the Internet? Time to re-think?

Conservatorships: It’s Not All Good

Diedre_2Smart Marketing client Diedre Wachbrit points, in her weblawg, to an interesting investigative series in the L.A. Times about conservatorships (called guardianships in most parts of the country). Seems that not all the proceedings, which take away an adult person’s legal right to manage his or her own affairs and gives that right to a conservator appointed by the court, are accomplishing the goal of putting these seniors in the control of those who love them.

Letter to my son, Max, on his 13th birthday

My beloved boy,
    Let me continue to call you that for a while, before I have to call you a young man.
    I want you to know what a gift you have been to me. From the day you were born, and every single day of Dscn0447_1_2your life, you have filled me with joy. There has not been a day when I wished I wasn’t a parent; not a day when I did not count myself lucky to have you; not a day when you did not make me smile.
       
    All my adult friends have warned me about the terrors of adolescence still to come. I don’t doubt them. I remember my own teenage years and wonder how anyone put up with me. But it’s hard for me to imagine these things for you, because you have always been, in my eyes, perfect.

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One Good Joe

The Smart Marketing staff received a visit from long-time client and special friend Joe Strazzeri of the law Dscn0493_1firm of Strazzeri Mancini LLP and the Laureate in Wealth Strategies Program. After an office tour and a demonstration of all the new projects and products at Smart Marketing, Joe took the entire staff (minus Zach Katkin and Michael Lasalandra, who could not attend) out to lunch at Bayside restaurant in Naples. You can click on the photo to enlarge: (l-r) Nichole Vanas, Harry Casimir, Diane Scire, Julia DaRocha, Joe Strazzeri, Marcia Albert, Lesley Blaine, Sarah Marshall.

Marketing Lesson From A Panhandler

    So I’m walking down the street in Boston this morning, and I’m accosted by a panhandler.
    "Hey," the guy says, "can you spare twenty bucks?"
    I looked at him with what I’m sure was horror etched on my face.
    "Just kidding!" the guy says. "But I do accept Mastercard and Visa."
    By this time, I was laughing so hard, I gave him five bucks.