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Archives for : April2011

MMMM Food For Thought – Respond Quickly

Respond Quickly

Food For Thought

It’s Marketing Mercenary’s Monday Morning, and here’s what I’m chewing on.

Danny O’Malia, customer service expert and former head of O’Malia Foods, spoke at the Rainmakers Kokomo Biz2Biz event last Thursday. He told us that one of his favorite customer service recommendations is this: “Respond unbelievably fast.”

This kind of approach shows customers and others just how important they are to you.

Simple and powerful. Just what I need! Have a great Monday.

Mr. Omalia can be reached via IndysTrustedServant.com.

Productivity Getting In The Way

Cubs Game Interrupts Productivity Interrupts Cubs Game

Cubs Game Interrupts Productivity Interrupts Cubs Game

Actually, it’s the Chicago Cubs game. I’ve started on my Saturday errands and work around the house. BUT the Cubs game starts in just a little while, and I’ve got a lot to do yet. A list of personal and professional tasks await.

I hate when that happens. Well, I’ll just have to be productive for a few more minutes, and see what the day brings. GO CUBS GO! Have a great Saturday.

(BTW, that’s my photo, not some “Google Images” download.)

Michael Kelsey Performs in Kokomo – Photo Gallery

Michael Kelsey performs in Kokomo

Michael Kelsey at Oakbrook Church

Around 300 folks gathered at Oakbrook Church Friday night. Three aspects made this an usual group to attend a concert by a solo guitar player and singer:

The age group – from under 7 years old, all the way up to the senior years.

The broad response – everyone I could see was enthralled, from the kids’ participation, to the whoops of enjoyment from an older fellow sitting near me.

The dedication – it was my first time for this artist, and I was strongly in the minority.

I’m going to cut to the chase here – I was impressed, enraptured, overjoyed, and will definitely see him again.

You might have guessed that, from the number of photos, or just from the fact that I’m writing about Kelsey’s show. I might be just trying to avoid the part of this review that will prove the most difficult: describing Kelsey’s performance.

His only instruments were his acoustic guitar and voice. To be truthful, he occasionally used an electronic drum pad as well. He also employed a number of electronic gizmos that “looped” the percussive sounds, music, and acoustic textures, and provided reverb, echo, and other effects. But this was not a celebration of technology. Far from it.

He built and morphed and evolved layers and beats and his voice in an extremely organic and acoustic-sounding stew…yes, it seemed more like cooking…or did it? Perhaps I could describe it as a tapestry that doesn’t reveal it’s pattern until it’s finished. No, still not right. I think the musical experience was more like a kinetic sand painting, where the artist develops one image seemingly from nowhere, then uses parts of that image to make the next image in a story he develops as it moves and grows. *Whew!*

But wait – the show was not just sonic textures and rhythms. Sometimes, Kelsey crafted a rhythm section out of vocal samples, thumps and notes on his guitar, and used it as accompaniment. In other segments, he built an orchestra that swirled and danced with his arms, head and legs – he was physically involved in every way – to tell a sound story that he used to touch the minds and hearts of his audience.

After opening with a sensitive cover of Peter Gabriel’s “In Your Eyes,” his song selection was mostly original. Other compelling covers were “While My Guitar Gently Weeps,” and “Everybody Wants to Rule the World.” All though these songs were extremely good, his original material was most gratifying. My personal favorite was “Bus Driver,”

MMMM Food for Thought – Your Cape

MMMM Your Cape

Food for Thought

It’s Marketing Mercenary’s Monday Morning, and this is what I’m chewing on.

I read something online a few days ago, and it keeps coming back to haunt me:

“You can’t just put on a cape and expect to fly.”

Have I done that? Are there skills or qualities that I have tried to acquire,  just make me “cool” or fit in with the movers and shakers better?

Perhaps I don’t have any real aptitude for that thing – much less have the passion it would take to excel with it.

I’m not saying you shouldn’t try to reach higher every day. You must. I’m saying, “be true to yourself.”

What’s your superhero “cape”?

Shadows Reaching

Shadows Reaching

Shadows Reaching

Hi! I captured an interesting shadow pattern when shooting a 360-degree virtual tour photo recently, and I thought I would share it with you. What do you think of this? Have you ever discovered that you accidentally shot something great-looking or visually striking without planning that type of shot?

MMMM Food for Thought – Blessed

Blessed

Food For Thought

It’s (a little later than) Marketing Mercenary’s Monday Morning, and this is what I’m chewing on.

This afternoon, I was working in my home office. Looking past the top of my laptop, I can see out the window next to my desk. The view reaches across the short distance from the back yard to the farm field behind the house, then all the way to the back of the field, to the woods, over 1/4 of a mile away. Throughout most of the day, it’s been cloudy and drizzling rain. I was wishing for some sun!

Then, I remembered how I sat in a windowless video studio or basement office for the entire 17 years that I worked at a large local company. And, even though that job was more lucrative in many ways than being an independent marketing specialist…

I am blessed. I have the freedom that comes with being my own boss. The stress level is minimal in comparison. I am able to spend more time with my family. And I can look out the window, or go outdoors, any time I want.

Thank you, Dear Lord. Bring the sun in Your good time.

Desert Deep

Desert Layers

Desert Layers

While in Phoenix, Arizona last month, I enjoyed shooting desert landscapes. For one thing, I had never experienced the American Southwest before. And, since there was often interest at various distances from the camera, the images seem to bring depth to the flat computer screen. I hope you enjoy this one! Thanks for dropping by. –JR

MMMM Food for Thought – Smooth

It’s Marketing Mercenary’s Monday Morning, and this is what I’m chewing on.

MMMM - smooth

Food for Thought

Today, I was remembering how I have worked with clients on their branding. When we discuss their marketing message, they had difficulty expressing what their main marketing message or target demographic was. These were not folks that were new to small business or to marketing. However, no one had ever (or recently) pushed the issues with them:

What is your main marketing message?

To whom are you trying to communicate that message?

Then, in trying to carve out these important matters, another challenge appears:

How do you make it “smooth?”

How do you make your marketing message easy to convey, and easy for the first person that hears it (reads it, eats it, whatever) to pass it on to the next and the next and the next?

Thanks to Seth Godin for the ideas behind the term “smooth.” from his book, Unleashing the Ideavirus.