The Phone is Still King

When was the last time you used the phone… to get transit directions?

And I don’t mean texting or using an app!

I mean actually placing a call and talking to a live agent. 

The other morning, I was taking the bus from downtown to my home office. 

I had been at an early- morning Vancouver Board of Trade event. These events usually start early (around 7:00 am) and finish by 9:00. This particular event featured a BCIT professor speaking on the topic of different generations in the workplace. 

After the event, I jumped on a bus and mulled what I’d learned—while carefully shuffling my feet out of the way of fellow passengers.

How to communicate with your audience
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That Guy in Shorts

The guy at the bus stop wears shorts every day. No matter what!

I pass him in my car two or three days a week, when I drive my teenage son to school. 

It’s not a long drive. Maybe 15 minutes at most, through some of Vancouver’s gently sloping, cherry tree lined streets. (Beautiful in the spring!) 

Our journey intersects with a couple of busy bus routes. We leave around 8:00. By then, many of the bus stops we drive by have small groups of people lulling about as they make their way downtown. 

And almost every morning, we see the same guy at the same bus stop waiting for his bus.

And every time, he’s wearing shorts!

Is that guy in shorts your client?

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Takeaways from Google’s “Marketing in the Age of Assistance”

A couple months ago, I attended the Greater Vancouver Board of Trade event “Marketing in the Age of Assistance.” The guest speaker was Meagan Tanner, Strategic Partner Manager, GMB Americas, Google. 

It was a very pleasant morning of networking, croissants and marketing talk.

And Meagan’s presentation was a good reminder that marketing fundamentals remain just as important today as they were five, ten or twenty years ago. 

Takeaways from Google’s “Marketing in the Age of Assistance”
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Who Are Your Business Competitors, Really?

Many years ago, a client gave me a free ticket to attend a local health food expo. During one of the presentations, the speaker asked the crowd, “Who is McDonald’s biggest competitor?” and promised to give the first person with the right answer $50.

A low rumble arose from the crowd as people tossed out ideas. “Burger King!” “Wendy’s!” “Subway!” “Dominos!” they shouted.

I thought for a moment. I figured that since he was asking the question, the answer was probably something unexpected.

I shouted “grocery stores!”—and pocketed the $50!

business competitors

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Is It Selfish Not to Share? Brian Solis Contemplates a Marketing Mindset Shift

Many of us are familiar with this photo:

marketing mindset
Photo Credit: John Blanding, The Boston Globe

Note the older lady in front. (The one without phone in hand).

When this photo made the rounds of social media in 2015, the reaction was swift and conclusive: It was a sad illustration of society’s phone obsession. It showed our relentless need to capture every minute of life’s special moments.

Have we lost the ability to live in the moment?

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Small Business Internet Marketing: Creating Surveys

Most small business owners find themselves thinking about surveying their customers or target market at some point. Some will use them to get customer feedback on products and/or services. Others will use them as a tool to start conversations with prospects and discover new selling opportunities.

Although most of my business focus is writing and editing web marketing copy, blog posts, newsletter articles and social media content, I do occasionally create or edit surveys for clients.

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