Branding is Dead; Long Live Branding.

Branding is Dead; Long Live BrandingI recently came across a couple of online articles touting the demise of branding, which prompted this post. The title, of course, is a play on the traditional proclamation made upon the death of a monarch to announce the ascension of the heir to the throne. So … is branding dead??

A recent LinkedIn survey revealed that 37% of small to medium sized businesses still view the company logo as the main focus of the company brand. And 32% see branding as relevant only to large businesses. Wow.

With such a narrow view of branding, it’s understandable that roughly one-third of small and medium sized businesses might think branding is dead. (more…)

12 Things You Can Count on in 2012

  1. 12 Things You Can Count on in 2012Social media is not going away
  2. Inbound marketing will continue growing, as the marketing strategy that engages rather than interrupts the prospect
  3. There will be more social media platforms coming online, and no one knows which will take off and which will fizzle
  4. Ignore online networking at your peril
  5. The watchword in social media – as in all online marketing – will be “make it personal”
  6. Auto-tweeting and autoresponders and “auto-anything” are going to have to evolve in order to engage
  7. Having an online marketing strategy is more important than simply executing tactics
  8. Getting clear on your target audience is the very first step to online success
  9. Marketing, in and of itself, is not the objective; it is the means to an end
  10. Having a step-by-step program in place for effectively reaching and resonating with your ideal customer or client is Job 1
  11. Not only can you blog, you MUST blog
  12. Marketing your business requires time, effort and money; only the proportions are in question. If you want to spend less money, be prepared to spend more of your time and effort on marketing. If you want to devote less time and effort to marketing (and concentrate on serving your customers and clients), you will need to invest more money in your marketing efforts.

Things That Make Me Go “AARRGGHH!!”

If you are a friend / fan / follower of mine on Facebook or Twitter, you know I’m a Late Night with Jimmy Fallon fan. I think he’s one of the most talented and genuinely nice people in television today. Whether he’s acting, singing, playing guitar, or doing amazing impressions (especially of rock stars), he’s just genuinely funny without ever being mean-spirited or crude.

He’s also a great interviewer because he’s still such a fan himself; he’s somehow managed to avoid becoming jaded by his own success. (I’d better stop now; I sound like a groupie!)

Anyway, one of his signature bits on Late Night – the “Thank You Notes” segment – is exactly what it sounds like – Jimmy writing notes to a mix of news stories that have given his show the most material over the past week, as well as silly jokes about people and objects that he thinks deserve a nod.

Well, I know we’re supposed to be in full-on “thankful” mode, this being the week of Thanksgiving and all, so here are my own tongue-in-cheek thank-yous to some of the businesses I’ve had to deal with in the last couple of weeks that just made me want to go “aarrgghh!!” There are lessons here for all of us. Cue the background music … 🙂 (more…)