Why I Dumped My Old Website (And What I Learned)

It was time for a change. Difficult change, I assure you. Imagine the blow to my heart, my mind and my Blah, Blah, Blah brand when I learned that it is very difficult, practically unheard of, for my site to rank on the first, or even second, page of search engine results. Why? Because of the "dot .us" url.  I could optimize all I wanted for certain keyword phrases, but the odds of being found by anyone who didn't already know how to find me were nil, because of what came after the "dot." Finding a New "Dot Com" for BlahBlahBlah.us With BlahBlahBlah.com already owned by Conde ... read more

Effective Presentations: 7 Tips for Making Any Presentation Anything But Blah

I look at effective presentations this way: whenever you want someone to do, not do or let you do something, I say you’re making a “presentation.” Why not make it an effective presentation? Here are seven tips to make your message come through, as well as to help you be clear, confident and convincing when you deliver it. Effective Presentations Tip #1. Get to the point. Imagine that your meeting is over. You’ve had your say, made your case, closed your computer. Everyone is back to wherever people go after a meeting. Someone who wasn’t there asks someone who was, “What was that ... read more

Database Marketing: Love the One You're With and Grow Your Business

What if I told you the only way you could grow your business in the next 12 months was from your existing pool of clients, customers, members or patients? That’s the question I asked from the stage this month. It made my audiences pause, ponder and even whine a little bit. So I waved the magic wand again and said it would be OK to tap into their database of past/inactive clients as well as prospects who had somehow found their way onto a list. From their expressions, some were pleased by the expanded scope, but by no means was it ... read more

The Importance of Body Language: Stop Spreading This Myth Information

The importance of body language (aka non-verbal communication) has been over rated and misunderstood long enough. The bunk stops here. I’m referring to the oft-cited study that says communication is 93% non-verbal and 7% verbal. Some studies dissect the math and give the importance of body language 55% with tone of voice accounting for 38%. The words you say, the content you include to support your points, the message you so carefully crafted matters only 7% the study says. Really? That’s just crazy talk. If the importance of body language and how you say something trumps the words you choose and what you ... read more

How are you? (What to say that isn't blah.)

“How are you?” Odds are you have asked and been asked that question more than once already today. And I’m betting that most of the answers you heard or gave were either “fine” or “good,” followed by the reciprocal reply, “And you?” Rinse and repeat for another round of “fine” or “good” answers, with an occasional “not bad” thrown in as a synonym for “good.” (Especially if you're asking one of my Minnesotan in-laws.) Although no one really wants to know how the other person is when we ask “How are you?”, we do so anyway. After all, when we do want the ... read more

Super Bowl™ Commercials: How to Watch Them and What You Can Learn (and Use) for Your Own Marketing

I love to watch Super Bowl™ commercials. (Who doesn't?) More specifically, however, I love to watch people watching Super Bowl™ commercials. I also like to watch people not watch them and figure out why. Try it yourself this Sunday. You can learn a lot about what works and what doesn't when it comes to effective marketing--including your own effective marketing--even though you may never run an ad on television, let alone during the Super Bowl™. First things first. Take charge of the remote control. If your game-watching group is anything like the ones I've been a part of, rarely does anyone try and fast forward through ... read more

The Unique Selling Proposition: You Are One of a Kind.

  I spoke in New York City last month and made time to visit the National September 11 Museum. I braced myself for an emotional morning, knowing there would be exhibits I might choose not to experience. (Thankfully, they are clearly identified as such.) I did not expect to find motivation for a newsletter/blog post related to effective communication or marketing. The motivation came in the form of the blue wall, above. Wait. No, maybe it wasn’t a blue wall. As I got closer to the exhibit, I realized it was more of a mosaic. Large, blue tiles, thousands of them assembled ... read more