Archive for 2016

Quietly marketing

Marketing is not talking.

Marketing is not the ability to talk a lot.

Marketing, if you are doing it right, is about communicating effectively.

And sometimes, communicating effectively means being very quiet and let someone else talk.

Persuasive context

Persuasion is contextual.

I might try and persuade you to buy this tiny automobile safety hammer from me but you’re not interested.

Tomorrow you’re trapped in a car flooding with ice cold water. Suddenly I can be very persuasive.

Today I cannot persuade you to hire my services or buy my product.

But tomorrow, I can persuade you to listen and open your wallet.

I just need to be patient and persistent.

Does anybody need a box of 1,000 tiny automobile safety hammers? I seem to have an excess of them on my hands.

Mistaken permission

Some of the best work I have ever done for clients was when they gave me permission to make mistakes.

Value is contextual

If I cannot trust you with something as cheap as my email address, why would I trust you with something as valuable as my attention?


If you send me a cold email and all you did was insert my name in to your generic spiel, I am going to be hitting that DELETE button faster than you hit the SEND button.

Unbidden Newsletters

When we connected on LinkedIn, I made a statement in my connection request message that I realized your time was valuable and I would not waste it.

Please do not disrespect my time by automatically adding me to your newsletter/spam email list, unbidden and un-asked for.

Cold targets

Cold emails should never start with “To Whom It May Concern” or “Dear Sir/Madam.”

Seriously, just don’t.

Did I attach the attachment before pressing send?

Before you send out a cold email, read it aloud, and then ask yourself this: Would I want to have a chat over lunch with the person who sent this email?

If the answer is “No”, don’t send the email.

Edit, change and fix as necessary.

Unfortunately this “stop, read, think, edit, send” process is only ever applied by the clue-ful, so stating it is redundant.

Everybody else will just hit send.

Mislabeled expectations

When the label doesn’t match the expectation.

I was sat in one of my favourite coffee shops on Monday morning chatting with a few entrepreneurs when we overheard a heated exchange between a customer and the barista.

The customer asked for “a latte without milk.”

The barista looked at her quizzically and said “You mean an espresso?”

“NO! I mean a latte, but without the milk.”

The barista dutifully pulled an espresso shot, “Is this what you mean?” he asks proffering the cup to her.

“Yes, that’s it! Perfect.”

Prepackaged journey

We can all agree that packaging science is a mature art.

But it is also expensive to do right. And most companies think that the experience ends at the checkout screen or the cash register.

Apple, ColorWare Inc, and even Microsoft (with their Surface 3), get it.

Your sale doesn’t end when you take the customer’s money.

Your sale ends when the customer returns to your store to buy a second one, or a third, or a replacement, or something else entirely different because they loved the journey that YOU took them on when they purchased from you.

Personal Commodity

Important work is personal.

To you.

To me.

To the person doing the work.

To the person receiving the work.

Important work is flawed and imperfect but immensely valuable. Commodity work is impersonal. We only care about commodity work when it is not done to expectation.

What Exactly Is “Real Work?”

“Yeah, but marketing and meeting with clients. That’s not like actual, ‘real’ work.” said the engineer who was being paid by my efforts at marketing too and meeting with clients.

Acknowledgement Autopilot



Businesses with only automated acknowledgement systems only have half of the equation that drives customers to return, unfortunately.

Inbound Marketing

“Questioner: ‘Hey Justin, how do you get so many inbound connections on LinkedIn per day?’
Me: ‘How do you think I get so many inbound connections each day?'” —

Giving away the farm

Giving away deep value to your audience is the single best way to remove doubt from your audience’s mind that you can add new value and more value to their business.

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