3 reasons why every marketeer should be blogging – RIGHT NOW!



You are already an expert!  You are uniquely qualified to talk about something that you are passionate about… it could really be anything… or even your everyday life.  Pick something you’re passionate about (e.g. hobby, interest, pets, sports, whatever).  Because you are passionate about that topic, you likely are very good at it.  Share your passion with the world!

I recently read “The Go-Giver” a book that talks about adding value to every relationship in your life, all the time, and in return you will receive multi-fold value.  Blogging is the same way.  It gives back to you.

Here are some of my personal examples: 

In the short time of this blog, I’ve helped some students answer some basic marketing questions and offered career advice…  Why?  Somebody, somewhere along my life, did that for me – blogging is way to participate in the circle of life. 

Two months ago I was approached to do some marketing consulting, which I past up to an unemployed friend…. who is monetizing on his expertise and perhaps thinking of joining the start up company. 

You’d be surprised who reads your blog… a reputable recruiter picked up my postings and introduced me to two great contacts…. Who knew J

Yes, like everything else in life, at first it takes time and effort, but it’s worth your while.   Read on.


There’s a wise saying that goes something like “if you want to get good at something, teach it.”  Blogging is like teaching.  So, you can elevate your passion to the next level through this medium. 

At first, blogging takes some getting used to… but eventually you learn to make it part of your life… you learn to

Seth on Blogging: "do it for the meta cognition that comes with it"

process your blog topics and content on your unconscious mind as you live your life.  That’s yet another reason why I suggest you blog about something you’re passionate about – because it will come natural to you.

The other thing is that it brings some humility… just when you think you know something, you’re reminded that others know more.  And that is very healthy.  Most of my blog posts are also found in industry LinkedIn groups, where very smart people challenge my thoughts and opinions… some of my postings have received tough criticism… but guess what, it makes me better! 


A confession: I started blogging later than I should have.

Over the last couple years I was tempted.  I started dabbling on LinkedIn postings… did some tweeting… but I was a bit hesitant to jump on the phenomenon.  A few barriers for me where:

1.      No time!

2.      Not sure anyone will want to read.

3.      How do you sustain it?

4.      Since it’s going on the web… do I really want to put my thoughts out there?

YADA, YADA, YADA…  All valid points but they kept me from moving forward.  At last, I jumped on board and the experience is FREEING! 

1.      Guess what, I still don’t have time, but I fit it in when I can (even at 3 am) because it is a topic I’m passionate about. 

2.      Seth says “who cares if no one reads it, do it for yourself.”  Totally agree!

3.      I’m not sure how long I can sustain it… or if I will… then again I don’t know if I’ll be alive tomorrow – so why worry!

4.      On #4, use your best judgment.  If your passion is not digestible for the general public, blog under an alias using alternative information – people only care about the topic, not you or me.

“No single thing in the last 15 years - professionally - has been more important to my life than blogging… it’s the best d--- thing in marketing” – Tom Peters

So… hopefully I’ve convinced you to keep blogging, or to start blogging… or even to consider it further…

If you need any help, reach out to me, I’ll do what I can to get you going.

Good marketing!





S I M P L E Marketing

Target audience
too many messages

Your target audience is being bombarded with messages!  Vendors, your competitors and other priorities are all battling for share of mind.  Everyone wants a piece of share, no matter how brief and we ALL understand the reach + frequency game, so we ALL play to win!


Social media has not only changed the business rules, but also all communication vehicles.  This has given businesses new ways to market, instantly, personally and 24×7.  Single person organizations are now able to compete with corporate giants, lowering traditional barriers for mass advertising

More than ever, I propose, it is time for you to make all your marketing efforts   S   I   M   P   L   E.


As a society, we grew up with a few misunderstandings:

§         The more complex, the more authoritative

§         Completeness is more informative

§         The use of bigger words shows a higher level of education

§         The list could go on…

In marketing, I would argue that all of these are wrong.  Perhaps in the “catalog” days these would play… or in a scientific journal… or in a User’s Manual… but in today’s marketing, there’s no room for this.

1988 campaign

Stop and think of the most memorable message’s you’ve retained (we’re all consumers)… I think of:

1.      Just do it – Nike

2.      Live Strong – Lance Armstrong’s cancer campaign

3.      The real thing – Coca Cola

Now, I realize these are all slogans… and I realize that I’m not the smartest guy in the world… but that’s really all that fits in my mind.  And yes, they do shape my buying decisions.  Even as I’m conscious of the intent and vehicles to influence me!


There’s an incredible surge in video marketing.  Research shows that this wave will turn into a full-blown tsunami in the next 3 years.  By now, all major brands have YouTube videos peddling their products. 

Most of these are incredibly entertaining and funny.  The best of these, I forward to my friends for a kick.  But, have we gone too far down the creativity line? 

I think so… entertainment is not the goal of advertising, it is influence.  Out of the hundreds of videos that I’ve absorbed, I don’t think one has influenced me to actually purchase a product – even a .99 cent product.  What about you, has a video made you buy a product recently?


I see our challenge as the ability to influence through simpler creative executions.  A picture says a 1,000 words… a video should only deliver a simple story… there’s really not much room for more.  Even looking back at the 1984 Apple ad, it reminds me of the simple – yet difficult – responsibility of a marketer.

Finally it all needs to fit tightly and simply in the medium you’re using.  Earlier I wrote a blog on advertising, those rules apply in your search for simplicity. 

beautifully simple


One word of warning: in your quest for simplicity you will be going against the grain so be ready to be criticized.

Good Marketing!


4 Marketing Pillars of GR8 Print Advertising

Recommendations from a practicing marketeer


In  2010 I’m kicking off my New Year with a new advertising campaign.  It starts with the focus of a print ad, to be placed in journals.  As I embark on this process, I thought I’d write about the practical considerations of developing an ad. These recommendations may be part of the creative brief or even an evaluation scorecard. 

For reference, I’ll use an Ad that I developed last year – and later leveraged into a comprehensive marketing campaign. 

1. Identify a clear objective & target

It all starts with the goal of the advertisement.  Depending on your product lifecycle and strategic business plan, you should have ONE clear goal.  At the onset of this ad, we sought to introduce a new product into the market.  As example, the main goal of the sample ad the was introduction of the a new offering.  Therefore the copy leads as “Introducing…”

Other potential advertising goals for consideration: switch from competitors, grow a class (good examples in pharmaceutical ads) or announce a promotion.  Personally I’m not a big fan of advertising just for SOV, but in some categories it makes sense – and billions of dollars are spent on this objective.

As you’re creating your ad, consider the target audience you’re attempting to appeal to.  What is the segment?  What are the buying behaviors?  Who makes the decision?  What are their “pain points” (in their language)?  The more detailed, the


Next, create a Creative Brief that outlines your strategy, objectives, customer insights and communication goals.  Debrief with your agency or creative team & writers to make sure all key components are clearly understood.  Then, get out of the way and let them work on creating break-through copy and visuals. 

Once you’ve generated an ad to meet this target audience, move to testing.  Test, test, test.  Do it with a random sample of your target audience.  Listen… you’ll have your biases… your superiors will have their biases… the creatives will have their biases… let the customer decide for you.  Test a broad range of creative, from the truly innovative to the image/language that you feel truly captures your brand essence.  

Back to the example, this was originally not my favorite concept, but testing over-road my bias as our customers dictated the final direction.

2. “STOPability


The number one criteria for success in your ad will be STOPability – the power to make your target audience stop whatever they are doing to read more about your offering.  If they’re not stopping your audience, you lost, nothing else matters.  Also consider the targeted publications where you’ll be placing the ad and avoid the same old tired graphics, colors, pictures, etc…

In this ad we used a combination of picture and graphics to illustrate the “bottleneck” concept. 

As soon the audience stops, the next important thing is the headline.  Spend time on the development of this critical component.  Warning: avoid cheesy proverbs or common sayings – unless they apply to your overall scheme.  Original content that connects with your target audience will provide a closer connection with your brand.

3. Message clarity


After your image and headline, focus on the content.  Remember your medium.  If it’s a one-page magazine, write accordingly… if it’s a web page, write accordingly.  Your message must strike the balance of relevant, informative and memorable.

End your message by proposing a call to action.  We used a web site on our ad, but you can use: “call 1-800” or “click here” or “write to” – no matter what, so long as it is appropriate for your audience, based on the medium.  Your call to action should tie back to your objective (what are you attempting to accomplish).

4. Target audience validation


As you look to validate your ad, it’s important to analyze feedback from your target audience testing.  What is the message they recall?  What was the call to action?  Does the ad compel them to move along the buying cycle?  Is the ad differentiated to others in the class?

Note: Differentiation is a topic that volumes have been written on, and rightly so… for reference see Al Ries & Jack Trout’s Differentiate or Die, worth every dime.


These are 4 Pillars for GR8 advertising.  I’ve seen more complicated models, but these are the essentials.  These are, like a recipe, must ingredients; the rest is practice, practice, and practice.


I welcome your additions to these pillars or feedback and insights on the blog or sample ad… good or bad… I simply cannot disclose proprietary information, but happy to discuss the proposed pillars and ad structure.

Good marketing!