Archives for : weather


I’m not just talking about the weather.


Thanks to everyone who visits my site today, many for the first time. Please feel free to share this post to “encourage” your friends and relatives to take meaningful action. Rock on. –JR


My First Time-Lapse “Video”

A great deal of last night’s storm took place to the north of our home, so I was able to stand outside with my camera and tripod, photographing the storm for the better part of an hour, and stay perfectly dry. Our view to the North is mostly unobstructed, so I took the opportunity to experiment with some time-lapse photography. These images were not shot at regular intervals. For some of them, I waited for a lightning flash. For others, I would shoot a series as quickly as I could hit the shutter again after an exposure (I used 2.5 second exposures most of the evening.)

While unfortunately I did not catch any actual lightning bolts, the images were fairly dramatic, especially when put into motion.

I took about 250 shots. You’ll see 76 shots from one sequence where I kept the camera in the same position for the longest time, thus providing a rough time lapse appearance. I call it a “video” because I was afraid that calling it “My First Time-Lapse GIF Animation”  would not be as appealing to those less technical among us.

lightning time-lapse

Lightning Time-Lapse 09-05-2014

I used the animation functions of Photoshop to create this animation. It only took about 20 minutes to batch-resize the images, import them as layers, insert them as frames, and export it as an animation. While Photoshop’s Help system did not explain this process as I executed it, I was able to kludge together a couple of other written tutorials that were easy to find via Google.

Enjoy! Tell me what you think in the comments below.


Disaster Recovery Plan(s)?

flashlightI hope that your business was not damaged in the heavy weather yesterday. Damaged or not, you might be thinking what I’m thinking today: “I need disaster recovery plans.”

Plans? Why not “plan”? Because we might lose power for a few hours, or overnight. And we might lose power for 48 hours. Or a week. These various scenarios might all require different strategies for business continuity AND marketing!

Different marketing following a disaster? Absolutely. Let’s say that a large part of the area is affected by a severe weather event, and is without power for several days, but road access is restored. Your marketing can no longer be delivered to a portion of your audience via your website, Facebook, or e-mail (some will have mobile access, but many will not). You might have to rely more heavily on traditional forms such as radio and newspaper.

Action Steps:

A) Meet with your key employees, and maybe your vendor reps as well. Brainstorm ways to anticipate and overcome adversity when disaster A, disaster B, or disaster C strike.

B) Want to make a “brilliant” impression on your  clients right now? Get your top 50 customers a really bright flashlight, complete with a spare set of batteries. Alternatively, get them a weather radio.

Have a safe week. –JR

(I can consult with your business on marketing strategies in good weather or bad. See the “About JR” tab for a million ways to contact me, or just message me here: jr (at) marketingmercenary dot net.)

Daylight Savings Time?


I don't like Daylight Savings Time.

Thanks for letting me get that off my chest. Now, don’t forget to set your clocks ahead (“Spring Forward”) tonight.

Bring On 2013! Tips for Snow Day Success

bring on 2013 - happy new yearYou’ve got little to fear in the face of the developing blizzard in Indiana and the Eastern U.S. states on December 26, 2012…

You’ve already beaten the End of the World predictions based on erroneous interpretations of the Mayan calendar.

You’ve also just come through what’s arguably the most hectic, taxing, financially draining time of the year and had a (hopefully) safe, joyful, and successful Christmas.

Way. To. Go.

In fact, you may have some virtual office time at home, due to the storm. I’m going to take the liberty to make some suggestions for an easy-yet-productive Snow Day to help get your 2013 (snow) ball rolling!

1) Watch the multi-tasking! Freedom can bring the temptation to overdo it.

2) Make a list of the things you would LIKE to accomplish today, and place a star (★) next to the three most important items. Work on those first. Actually, Read the rest of this list first – it will probably give you some task ideas.

3) Recharge needed devices, like your mobile phone, flashlight battery, and laptop. Make any other needed preparations for a potential storm-related power failure, including fresh water.

4) Organize your tax information for 2012. Won’t it feel great to beat the tax deadlines by weeks or months?

5) Clean off your desk.

6) Purchase a training resource that will give you a boost for the start of 2013.

7) Write your thank-you notes for Christmas gifts or other holiday festivities.

8) Update your Internet browser or any other software, if needed.

9) Make a plan for a healthier lifestyle in 2013, including exercise, diet, and relaxation. Why wait until New Years?

10) Read your Bible.

11) Search YouTube for a business topic in which you’ve been wanting to make improvements. Watch one video, and bookmark two more.

Many of these have probably been on your “mental list” for a while. Now they’re on your paper list. What other items are you considering that will help you get a great start on 2013?

Feel free to contact JR, the Marketing Mercenary, for help with your 2013 marketing calendar: Thank you for reading my blog in 2012, and have a blessed and safe New Year.


Local Fireworks Displays for 2012

Fireworks from Tipton, IN 2011

Fireworks from the 2011 Tipton, Indiana display

I’ve been doing a some quick research on local fireworks displays for today, July 4th, 2012.

From the chairperson for Walton‘s annual display:

Just so everyone knows………WALTON will have their Fireworks on July 4th. Festivities include Parade at 2pm, Booths DT Walton open at 11am, 4pm Car Show registration at Vol. Fire Dept, Fish Fry at Vol. Fire Dept. & Fireworks at Dusk. Hope to see everyone here!

Sounds like a great time in Walton tonight!

I was told recently by one of the Greentown Lions Club members that they will be having their annual fireworks display at the Howard County Fairgrounds tonight at dusk.  I’m trying to get a confirmation directly from the Lions Club, and any additional information. I’ll update this post when appropriate.

Fireworks are also banned inside the city limits of Kokomo, but the rest of Howard County may use consumer fireworks.

Miami County is still under a fireworks ban at the present time. According to WISH-TV, Peru, Indiana’s display has been postponed until Labor Day.

Tipton’s annual display has been cancelled, also according to WISH-TV in Indianapolis. has a lengthy list of Indiana towns and counties that have announced their plans to cancel or continue. It can be found here.

Be safe, and enjoy your Independence Day celebration!



HOT HOT HOT – Quick Marketing Ideas for Today

[warning]Record-setting heat is expected across the Plains today. Is your business taking advantage, with a fun weather-themed promotion? Consider these easy-to-implement ideas.[/warning]HOT HOT HOT

OFFER 10% off everything, PLUS another 10% off one item for EVERY DEGREE ABOVE 100! You think people would never root for a 106 degree day? Wrong. (Sorry, friends in Dallas, Texas.)

“Hotter Than Hell” Open House. This is for the business that can get away with something more edgy. Offer visitors Devil’s Food cake and ice water. And, of course, great specials and prizes.

Serve free ice cream and popsicles. That’s it – just be a good neighbor. Thank people for coming in, and ask them to please be careful today. Hand them an ice-cold bottled water on the way out. Just show people that you care.

What are your ideas for a HOT HOT HOT day? Note them here, or e-mail Marketing Mercenary ( to bounce your ideas around with someone.

The Wind Can Blow

The Wind Can Blow

The Wind

We are grateful for the things for which we have worked hard, fought, struggled.

We give thanks for the people and possessions that deep down, we feel we could someday lose.

In your life, what are you taking for granted? Think about something you never think about losing.

Give thanks for that today.


Top 4 Things You Might Read Here

Ja, det er jo ikke det værste sted at holde pa...

More content is coming soon, that fits one or more of the following categories:

  • fun
  • useful
  • inspiring
  • ridiculous

I just want you to know that I haven’t quit on my blog. I’ve been mighty busy with numerous projects (grateful to God for that), but haven’t spent any of my free time right here. Feel free to post any comment you like. (Please keep it clean.) Thanks for reading! –JR

Mid-Week Reload: A Flood of Productivity?

MM Mid-Week Reload

Mid-Week Reload #1

Welcome to the new “Mid-Week Reload!” Marketing Mercenary found the Monday Morning posts difficult to do “regularly,” so I’m moving the post to mid-week. In addition, I’m refocusing on articles that are hopefully helpful to your work, rather than topics that are merely interesting to discuss.

Lately, I’ve been thinking about all the rain we’ve had.  It’s quite evident that there are portions of some area farm fields in which the crops have been drown out. However, it’s also easy to see that the grass, trees, and the remaining crops are growing like mad!

What does this have to do with productivity?

Continue Reading >>