28. December 2011 · Comments Off · Categories: Video · Tags: ,

28. April 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Random

Artist Serena Brewer works with dead things. She creates entirely new creatures out of the parts of old ones and sells them! Will wonders never cease? These aren’t really my thing (as my generation says) but it just shows you can sell anything.

The “artist” says, “I consider myself an artist first and a taxidermist second,” says Brewer. “When people ask me what I do, I say sculpture. It’s taxidermy sculpture, it’s just I’m using feather and fur rather than clay or steel.” (weird. makes me think this gal grew up in the Addams Family)

Brewer’s been supporting herself with this work for the past five years (see? there is a market for almost everything. you just have to find it). People fascinated by sideshow art are big fans of hers, she has a list of regular buyers, and she’s quite popular with tattoo parlors (no surprise there).

While the art has a core group of dedicated fans, it has yet to appeal to a broader audience (definitely a niche player). Marbury says many people have a hard time taking humorous art seriously. And many people just aren’t comfortable looking at dead things (no kidding!). The artists say, in a country where the majority of people eat dead things, they find that ironic. (I personally don’t like the head left on my fish at a restaurant)

Your marketing lesson? Anything sells once you find your audience. Have you clearly defined your audience and positioned your product specifically for them?

Work in a Cube, Play in a Cube?

Meet Bob, Joe, Ted and Ann. They work in a cube (maybe like you?) They have little square heads to fit in their little square cubicles and have meaningless titles like “Junior Accounting Analyst”. They capture the drudgery of corporate life but put you in charge. They’re The Cubes!

Made by Washington-based Accoutrements, this new corporate game is only $12.95 a set! Buy one for all your friends! That’s the beauty of this product. When you are selling a product with no major value except humor, price it right for no-brainer decisions by customers. We waste $12.95 pretty easily and for a laugh? Why not?

Is your product priced correctly? Is it competitive? Better make certain for increased sales!

Labor Day Has A Bad Publicist!

I was struck with a thought the other day. (Yes, it did hurt but I survived) We know what most of our welcome holidays stand for. The stories of Memorial Day, Christmas, Easter are all well known to us but what about poor Labor Day?

Labor Day obviously has a bad publicist. Where all the other holidays have a multitude of stories, movies, and websites, it doesn’t! Time to get a publicist who can remind us what we should be celebrating when we take the day off.

In the words of Ronald Reagan, “On this Labor Day, I proudly join my fellow citizens in saluting our Nation’s working men and women. As we celebrate the historic role of our nation’s free labor movement, we are reminded that workers have contributed as much to America’s social greatness as they have to our economic strength… Because of the quality of the goods and services they produce, we enjoy one of the highest standards of living in the world… By shaping a better future for our workers, we can and will assure continued progress and even greater opportunity for all Americans.”

How well are you getting the word out about your company and its stories?

Fast & Easy Sells

Jiffy Lube services over 23 million vehicles a year in their 2200 fast lube oil change stores nationwide. What more can you say? Success or failure is the final judge of your marketing efforts.

Look at your product. Can you make it faster and easier for your customers to do business with you? Does your website have a shopping cart? Do you deliver from your store? Are products bundled and prepackaged for fast access? Do you prompt your customers to reorder on regular purchases?

Time to think like your customer!

Chico’s: Selling Clothes & A Lifestyle

Chico’s ads and their catalogs are things of beauty! Their ads are shot in nature with streams, mountains, expensive log cabins. A lifestyle is being sold along with their clothes. You can “feel” the experience of their clothing.

They have definitely targeted their market. It appears their clothes and marketing are designed to appeal to women of style, who love the outdoors and don’t follow the crowd. Independent women of means permeate their ads.

Their catalog is as much about nature (the photography could win prizes) as it is about the clothes. It is a mini-magazine. It is an excellent example of selling the sizzle, not just the bacon. They create a lifestyle picture and use women of distinction as their models. They definitely appeal to me! (A baby-boomer woman with disposable income who loves traveling in the natural world.) Kudos to Chico’s!

J C Penney: Back To School Without A Clue

Have you seen the back to school ads from JC Penney? They are rappin their little hearts out for sales. So, why isn’t this smart?

First, they haven’t identified their customer. Is their customer really the eight to twelve year old they are targeting with their ad, or their parent you will pay for the clothes?

Second, once the ad motivates the kids to bug the heck out of their parent to take them to JC Penneys, doesn’t the store fall way short of expectations? It is, after all, a store my grandmother would love (and I’m old myself!)

Marketing Déjà Vu: Decide who your paying customer is. Then direct every ad and the look of your store (website) to that customer. It isn’t that hard people!

02. April 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Apartments

I know there are a lot of amazingly talented young people out there. My own daughter draws cartoons of a character she created…just for fun! She didn’t get that talent from me, since my own drawings resemble something you’d find in a cave…prehistoric style.

The Gallery Collection, which is a major publisher of Christmas cards for business use, as well as other professional cards, is running a great contest for talented young artists. To enter, you must be an artist in high school or college. You can submit your original artwork, photo, or computer graphic online, and if selected, it will be made into a greeting card available for purchase at the site. In return, the artist will win a $10,000 scholarship! Wouldn’t it be amazing to send our professional Christmas cards with artwork that your child created on it? The contest runs until January 15th, 2008, so budding artists have plenty of time to wait to be struck by inspiration.

I’ll have to check back to see when the winner is announced – I order Christmas cards like this to send to my business contacts, and I’d love to support the winner of the contest by sending that card out to my associates.

We had to go to Wal-Mart today. I hate that store! My husband needed new tires for his car though, and they were the cheapest in town, and the only place that could do the job tonight. After waiting way too long in line, we finally dropped off his vehicle at 5pm, and it was only after we got back on the road that it occurred to us to find out what time we should come back to pick the car up. It was then that they said, oh, we close at 7pm! They’d have the vehicle done, but it sure would have been nice to know that going into the deal. We had to race through dinner to get back there in time, but Jim is now the proud owner of 4 new, shiny, lots of tread left on ‘em tires. Thanks to Doug from Miami Furnished Apartments for the awesome hook-up.

My girls are getting older, and the older girls get, the harder it becomes to shop for them. It used to be that I could buy them clothes, or a new doll, and they’d be pleased as punch. Now that my daughters are 10 and 11, they’ve got their own taste in clothes, and they don’t want anything to do with dolls. I came across this site with Message Jewelry and it’s a unique gift idea for someone who can be tricky to buy for. You can choose any word…a name…even a motto or a short saying with special meaning. These aren’t costume pieces – they’re made out of platinum, gold, or silver! It’s the kind of thing that can be worn for a lifetime. If you can’t decide on a saying or message, their Chinese symbol jewelry line offers over 160 Chinese characters on a pendant or charm.

11. March 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Miami Real Estate

For years I’ve purchased large bottles of Diet Pepsi and Diet Coke (depending on my mood). Little did I know what kind of destruction one could cause. And, you think I’m kidding! I’m not!

Last night while my husband and I were watching the Eagles Farewell One Tour on TV (Yes, we’ve already established I’m old. And, yes, the Eagles are the best band ever…but I digress) we heard a LOUD explosion. My husband assumed it was a shotgun blast (We do live in the boonies) but it was a Diet Pepsi Lime bottle! The entire bottom blew out of it!

What a joy to see two liters of Diet Pepsi Lime all over the wall, ceiling and floor. Thank goodness, it was in the laundry room/pantry! Don’t you think if a product can explode on your shelf, the manufacturer should provide a warning label? I can’t be the only one this has ever happened to, can I?

Marketing Tip: Warn your customers about the adverse effects of your product before they learn the hard way. I now store the Diet Pepsi under a pine tree outside until it’s time for the refrigerator.
Posted by michele in Strategies at 10:30 | Comments (4) | Trackbacks (0)

If you’re already in the real estate market as a corporate landlord, or agent, chances are you will already have your own website. If you’re new to corporate letting and have a single property to let, is having a site worth it?

The short answer is yes, definitely.

As a corporate landlord, you won’t be trying to compete with the big boys. You will be concentrating on carving your individual niche within which you can extoll the virtues of your property and get clients into it.

A website is the simplest, most effective form of marketing there is right now. A decent website, written well and publicized properly is a 24/7 window to the world. It can answer questions, promote your corporate property, take bookings and show off all day, every day.

A marketing website for your corporate property is a great first contact for potential clients. It can entice them with great descriptions, photographs and even virtual video tours. If you do it right, the website can offer an experience almost as good as actually being there. If you don’t believe that, visit any good realtor’s website and see for yourself.

It can also give information about the local area, neighborhood, towns and cities as well as recreational activities and amenities around the property.

By offering rich resources, local information and anything else relevant, you remove barriers between the potential client and the booking. Going the extra mile and offering value-add features to the site will give the appearance of someone who cares about their tenants and their property. That still makes a difference in the eyes of many businesses.

Costs of Having Your Own Site

By having your own website, you save money on having your advertisement hosted somewhere else. A large part of being a landlord is marketing. Getting tenants into properties is hard work, and requires a lot of effort. Advertising will take up a large proportion of your day and having a website will offset much of that.

It won’t eradicate it altogether as you have to promote the site, but it makes the job an awful lot easier.

It doesn’t have to cost a fortune to have a website designed. You could even learn how to do it yourself. Use a platform like WordPress and much of the hard work is done for you. You can also buy a ready-made template which you can just modify to suit your needs. It doesn’t have to be flash, or technically advanced, it just needs to be clear, attractive and allow visitors to explore freely, check availability and be able to contact you quickly.

Any real estate agent will tell you, half of doing business in the corporate rentals market is getting the right clients. To get them you have to market and advertise in the right places. Having your own website is the least of these things, but it’s also the cheapest, and the easiest to implement.

Fort Lauderdale & Miami Roofer

Roofing is a major task both when building a new home and while renovating your old house. Choosing the right roofing contractor is critical to success. As you are going to make a sizable investment in financial terms, it is best to search around for the right company.

Roofing might seem an easy job but it isn’t in reality. The job requires expertise and above all a contractor that understands your particular needs and is able to translate those requirements into a finished piece of work. Thus it is advisable to spend some time to choose the ideal contractor. You will be glad you did later.

An unprofessional roofing company is likely to botch up the roof laying job thus leading to increased stress along with financial losses incurred as a result of the low quality work that will likely require extensive repairs.

A qualified and experienced contractor will take his time to analyze what the nature of the job is and act accordingly. He will not only give you an accurate estimate of the costs involved but also provide you with a precise timeframe in which the roofing task can be satisfactorily completed. A house is quite likely to be one of your biggest investments and you should employ the most profession contractors to take care of the roofing structure.

The roof serves not only as the protection from external weather threats but as it is the topmost part of the structure; it also serves as the centerpiece of the house. It adds character and beauty to the house by virtue of its design and flair. Thus a roof is an integral part of the overall aesthetic appeal of a house.

Thus the roofing structure should be designed as the perfect amalgamation of form and function. The ideal roofing contractor is one who is privy to all this and uses materials that achieve both these objectives simultaneously. A high quality roof is sure to increase the value of your home and add to its character.

There are many types of materials used in construction of a roof depending on the look one is going for. Many people use ceramic tiles while lately there has been a move towards metallic roofing. This is most certainly a move towards more modern looking housing with clean sleek lines and shiny surfaces.

A good contractor can be found with careful research. The first step is to decide upon the nature of job. This includes the type of roof you require with the decision depending largely on the location and style of your home and your budget. The most common roofs are made from asphalt shingles of which there is a wide variety available. Slightly more expensive type of materials consists of wood, slate tiles or metal.

It is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the process beforehand so that you are in a better position to evaluate potential roofing contractors. Make sure he contractor you choose is aware of potential problems related to water damage, rust and the like and offers practical solutions to avoid such issues.