“Super Crunching” … making marketing (and other) decisions by the numbers http://ow.ly/4OcUE

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Went to the #Metcom Studios open house. The facility is gorgeous! http://ow.ly/4Jlpe SL Chamber Salt Shakers did a great job with the ribbon cutting.

Just wanted the world to know that I believe in Jesus Christ.  -Nathan

Good to Great Person

May 11, 2006

I've been reading the book "Good to Great" by Jim Collins and so far it has been a very interesting read. Taking a scientific approach Collins first sorts the sheep from the goats in large public companies. Those that are considered great are the companies with sustained much-better-than-market returns over a 30 year period. He and team have then done their best to identify what the differentiating factors in these high performers are.

One of the indicators is a Level 5 leadership. Level 5 means that the manager is extremely humble while being tenaciously devoted to making the company succeed.

I think Collins has uncovered a few of the core characteristics of what makes a great leader. Mia Hamm from the World Champion US Womens Soccer Team is one who is a Level 5 leader. Extremely selfless and at the same time a ferocious competitor. She is self-effacing and a humanitarian. At the same time she has cultivated a killer-instinct on the soccer field that rages. Mia Hamm

Successful entrepreneurs are cut from this type of cloth. They don't thrive on bragadocia but on succeeding and contributing to society. Alan Hall of MarketStar fame appears to be this type of a person. Greg Warnock is another Utah entrepreneur who comes to mind.

Lately I've been telling people that I'm interested in interactive communication. They don't know what that means, or at least what I mean. Here it is: Interactive Communication is mass communication that is responsive on an individual level. It not only allows a user to navigate, but also guides and directs users to help them reach their goals. It applies operations theories to information to efficiently bring understanding to the person interacting. The end goal of this communication should be to connect people with people for business transactions or education or enjoyment. To have guided someone through an E-commerce experience, for example, and then to leave them only the opportunity to say, "I'll trade for that" is to throw away the potential for a customer relationship. Communication should be a two way experience. Input must be received in as human a way as possible. With language, with sound, with video, with expression. The more we can use technology to bring together interested parties the better. The more abject technology makes our experience the quicker we commoditize, and essentially cannibalize, our source of greatest fulfillment in life- the human touch.

What Do You Stand For?

April 12, 2006

Big MooI’ve been reading “The Big Moo” edited by Seth Godin. It’s a “collaboration of 33 of the world’s smartest business thinkers”. The articles are not credited to individual authors so I’m not sure who made this point, but one chapter asks the question, “What do you stand for?” The author sites the example of Bruce Katz who started the walking lifestyle movement. Through standing for something bigger than his product, Rockport shoes, he was able to not only grow to a $200,000,000 company in just a few years- he had a great impact on the healthy lifestyles of a large group of people.

I’ve considered what I think my “big moo” or category altering proposition should be and I think I’ve found it. I am passionate about ‘understanding’. I subtitled my blog with the word ‘truth’ which some may see as a bit wierd. But at a core this is what makes me tick- the pursuit of truth and understanding. Can this go hand in hand with branding and interactive communication? I think it should.

Mountain Goat in a Cloud BankI’m preparing a 15 minute blurb for a sales meeting tomorrow. We’re having trouble getting CSRs to put complete information into the accounting system which makes it hard to do follow-up, billing, and marketing. So I’ve got a little bit of time to impress upon the minds of these people the importance of being thorough when it comes to data collection.

I’ve decided to use a couple of peices in my presentation that were provided during my most recent meeting of the Junto Revolution group. Rob Jeppsen, a very talented salesman and speaker and author, brought these out. Thanks Rob for the insights! I wish I could just replay the entire presentation for them.

This little cartoon illustrates the importance of watching your data. You’ve got to love Gary Larsen.
The meeting will also include a brainstorming session on the different uses of the information we collect. The sales department in particular has by far and away the greatest responsibility in the area of collecting customer data. They need to understand that they are getting this stuff for more than just their own use.

Minimal Processing

March 18, 2006

Sam Brown does a quasi blog of images at explodingdog.com. These are hand drawn sketches that are far from polished. They elicit emotion and express ideas. Minimal process – maximum message.

That’s why I want to blog. I’m tired of reprocessesing every thought that comes out of my head. That’s what you do as a communication professional. You’ve got to take someone elses message and adapt it for the right audience. Well in this case my audience is whoever comes because of what I have to say.

Just spitting it out isn’t easy for me though. I’ve rewritten this post three times already.