Are you building bridges or moats?

[audio:] photo credit: raindog Look closely at your business and think of each thing you do that interacts with other vendors, competitors, customers, prospects and your community. For each interaction, consider whether it builds a bridge or a moat: A bridge allows someone on one side of a chasm or river to get to the […]

King for a Day: Verizon

[audio:] photo credit: Sister72 I‘d like to introduce a new series called “King for a Day“. For the acronym-challenged, you might see me refer to it as KFAD now and then, so don’t assume I’m talking about a local radio station. King for a Day is a series that will discuss some steps I’d take […]

Boat anchors are bad business. Sharing is good business.

[audio:] photo credit: Robb North Over the last month or so, I’ve been playing phone tag with someone at the local bank’s office. I use this national bank primarily because they offer some electronic banking services that local banks don’t bother to offer (such as a real-time, seamless interface with QuickBooks), despite my repeated “encouragement” […]

Ron Clark: Everything we do is personal

[audio:] photo credit: freeparking As some of you know, my wife is a junior high school teacher. 6th grade to be specific. Know what that means? Hormones. Drama. Lots of change. Who knows what else. People think it’s amazing that I’m a Scoutmaster for a Scout troop, but that’s easy compared to being a teacher. […]

If your entire staff turned over today, would anyone notice?

[audio:] photo credit: llamnudds And would they care? If a long time customer (2 years, 5 years, 25 years, whatever) walked into your business today and all your staff was different from their last visit, would they notice the change? Why do I ask? Engagement. Relationship. Stickiness. IE: Buzzwords that answer the question: “Why the […]

The Cure for “The Culture of Cant”

[audio:] It’s not unusual for small business owners to be involved in community organizations, so in that spirit I have something a little different from our every day discussion here – yet still completely applicable to your business – no matter what that business does. Rather than Friday’s normal Hotseat Radio show, today I had […]

What makes the phone ring in any economy?

[audio:] photo credit: Yogi There are no secrets around here. I am busy as crap. Some weeks, so busy that I’ve had to let the blog slide a bit (Horrors!) I’ve made it quite clear that I expect “well-behaved” readers to be contacting their clients, customers and prospects at least once a month – and […]

Warm chocolate chip cookies and the big difference between you and them

[audio:] photo credit: scubadive67 Almost every day, I stumble upon someone looking for a way to differentiate their business from their competitors’. Far too often, they try to compete almost solely on price. Since I’ve beat the dont-compete-solely-on-price drum in the past (eg: all those WalMart posts), so today we’re going to take a different […]

Competing with Bullwinkle

[audio:] photo credit: FlyNutAA The other day, one of our dogs chased a huge moose out of the yard. Who cares, right? Maybe. Read on. If you haven’t ever seen a moose, they aren’t quite as friendly as Bullwinkle. In fact, they have a reputation for being pretty mean once provoked. Readers of the Gary […]

Even Disney’s doing it – treating customers on their birthday

[audio:] photo credit: Thomas_Jung You know, we’ve talked about this before.  I’m speaking of the marketing value of keeping track of your customers’ birthdays.  I know, I know. People won’t give them to you. If so, it’s because you aren’t asking the right way – or you aren’t making the sale. This is a sale […]