Advertising

Small Businesses: Beware of Online Marketing Offers from Your Local Paper

Posted on April 28, 2011. Filed under: Advertising, Blogs, Jazz, Marketing, Media, Newspapers, SEO | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , |

This is longer than most of my posts. But I’m really het up! Music-wise, no relevance. I just picked something that always makes me feel happy and relaxed – Flor de Lis by Djavan.

These days, when you’re convinced you should be advertising in your local paper, your newspaper ad rep will likely be trying to sell you an array of online services. Some – like Hearst Media CT — will even offer you a dollar for dollar match of print advertising for every dollar you spend in online advertising. Sounds great, right? Now my $10,000 budget just became worth $20,000. Yes, but by what metrics do you determine the value of this offer. Right off the bat, the offer implies that the print publications are worth zero.

I am all for effective integration of online/offline marketing. However I’m finding that as traditional media – especially newspapers – transition their businesses online, there are some big pitfalls for unwary advertisers.

Case in point: I recently launched a new medical practice that draws from a pretty local market. We built a website and carefully optimized it for organic search. We registered the site in the key local search directories – Google, Yahoo! And Bing and quickly began coming up #1 on page 1 for our important terms.

The partners in the practice wanted to launch with some local traditional advertising as well. We canvassed the local media for print and online ad rates. In our area – Fairfield County, Connecticut — Hearst Media now owns four daily papers in all but one of the biggest cities and a time-honored chain of weeklies that covers some of the key smaller towns.

Hearst said to us: Whatever your ad spend online and in a targeted bi-monthly health/lifestyle magazine, we’ll give you a 100%, dollar for dollar match in print advertising in our other publications.

Here’s the rub. What is the online ad spend really worth. The promise is that there’s lots of analytic data to evaluate the online ROI, but the reports are a real disappointment. We bought visibility on three daily paper websites with geo-targeting to three local weeklies. The problem is that Hearst can’t break out the geo-targeting.

The rates are based on CPM – how many impressions – not click throughs. Unfortunately the sales staff is not well-informed and the analytics not precise enough to offer any advice on placement, aggregate analysis of what constitutes a good CTR, or anything that can be helpful to a marketer trying to get value for a client.

Then there are deceptive ‘SEO’ programs that are sold as collaborations with Google and other search engines to get you to come up higher in search rankings. No one at Hearst could really explain the program to us. The best we got was that you get a landing page on the back end of their site. Does it have a backlink to our site? I asked. Yes I think so.

Here’s what the SEO program turned out to be.

Hearst set up a landing page optimized with the same search terms we used on our site. They grabbed copy from our website, cobbled it together, wrote and added some factually incorrect copy that they never submitted for approval. They established a tracking phone number that pointed to the client’s phone number. The tracking number’s reason for existence was to prove to us that Hearst had pointed calls to us from this landing page. A visitor who was interested but not ready to call might write this number down and if they called it two months later when we were no longer advertising with Hearst, they would certainly think we were no longer in business.

The more agregious thing that Hearst did was to steal our entire website code and recreate the site under a new url – the same as my client’s but with a 1 added to it. They changed the phone number on every page of that site to their tracking number. The bogus site was optimized with the same search terms as our original site to drive traffic for our terms to the Hearst websites. So basically, they put us in competition with ourselves in organic search. They took the video we supplied them for the landing page and uploaded it to a YouTube account that used the client’s name and again pointed those who clicked to their site – not ours.

Worse yet they were charging us to put us in a situation where Google could demote our legitimate search engine rankings for duplicate content.

Who are they designing this for? Maybe if you’re a very small local business and you have no website or web presence, Hearst and others providing similar products – the other daily in our area The Hour has something similar – might help you establish some online reach that you wouldn’t otherwise have. But if you’re a small business that has invested in your own website, SEO and online reach – do not, I repeat DO NOT buy such a service. Take the money and create a blog, hire a good, local SEO consultant to optimize your site. (BTW – you can’t come up on page one for $35 per month for any really meaningful search terms.)

Maybe you’d be better off buying a banner ad on the newspaper’s site with a link to your site or see if you can get them to give you a direct back link from their site via some content you provide – which could be worth a lot to you. But in my experience you can’t really get meaningful reporting to help justify the investment in these programs. These new newspaper offerings are not malicious, just part of an evolution in marketing. But they are potentially damaging, nonetheless. Get yourself up to speed and be part of moving media toward truly mutually beneficial solutions.

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How the Worm is Turning for Newspapers

Posted on March 18, 2011. Filed under: Advertising, Content, Jazz, Marketing, Media, Newspapers | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

This post is about the continuing – and increasing pace of – the evolution of print newspapers into online entities. The musical post is not directly related. It’s a tribute to Joe Morello, the iconic drummer of the 1950s and ‘60s Dave Brubeck Quartet whose solo on Take Five is a jazz classic. We lost Joe this past week.

Joe Morello with Dave Brubeck Quartet

If there’s a thematic connection, it’s in the idea of evolution. Joe Morello helped evolve the way we think about rhythm. Listen to his killer technique on Far More Drums (in 5/4 time) from the album Time Further Out. Other personnel are Brubeck, piano, Paul Desmond, sax, Eugene Wright, bass.

Three things came to my attention this week that magnify the rapid move of newspapers away from a print platform. Two of them were widely reported.
• The L.A. times reported results of a study that show for the first time that online readership surpassed print readership by 46% to 40%.
• The New York Times announced it will erect its online subscription paywall on March 28.

I learned of the third thing as I worked with a client launching a new kind of medical practice who wanted to do some local print advertising here in the Fairfield County, Connecticut market. Over the past few years, Hearst Media has acquired all but one of the major dailies in the county, as well as a well-read chain of weekly community papers. I asked our sales rep for her help in putting together a three-month advertising plan in three of their community weeklies.

She proceeded to explain that for every dollar my client spent advertising online – which would include visibility on three major dailies and geo-targeting to the weeklies – and in a health and fitness-related magazine title, Hearst would match the spend 100% – dollar for dollar — in newspaper print advertising. That meant that a $10,000 budget, for example, would have a $20,000 equivalency.

It was a no-brainer for the client to cover both traditional and online bases for its original budget. And it made an enormous statement about the value being placed on print newspapers by the publisher. Even though the online advertising might be a bit pricey, we’ll know if it’s worth it when we get the traffic, page view and click-thru reports. There was no contract required so opting out is no problem.

A newspaper publisher giving away print to build online ad spends. Time was – til recently – that it was the other way around. The worm is most definitely turning!!

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Letting it go: Accepting that we only control so much

Posted on December 23, 2010. Filed under: Advertising, Blogging, Communications, Content, ecommerce, Human Business, Inbound Marketing, Jazz, Marketing, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , |

snOMG - Blizzard of 2010 - Baltimore, MDTo accompany a holiday-time post about accepting what’s out of our control in order to live productively, enjoy listening to jazz pianist Oscar Peterson’s take on ‘Let it Snow!’. Vibes player Dave Samuels gives it a tropical feel. Heading south anyone?

One year ago I was looking forward to 2010. The end of 2008 and most of 2009 had been really tough in the crisis economy. I had taken the enforced ‘downtime’ to change direction, learn, re-think my business and career, work out frequently and get very fit. In effect, I worked on controlling what I could control.

Come January 2010, I hit the ground running with new collaborators, a new set of ideas and tools to offer clients — and optimism. 2010 turned out to be a year of accomplishment.

Fortunately, the economy improved enough that some other hearty souls decided to launch a new business or expand one. Some of these fellow optimists became clients.

I’ve worked steadily all year helping these clients build their Web presence through inbound marketing. For most, we’ve started by creating or re-doing a website so that it can support interactive functions. You have to walk before you can run.

Out with the old. In with the new.

As we’re about to ring out 2010 and welcome 2011, I have to – once again — admit shock that it’s flown by so fast. Come January 2011, I’m going to hit the ground jogging. I’m assessing how to take my own business and my clients’ to the next level. With great foundations in place, we’ll all be very busy.

I’m writing goals for me and my clients. We’re in a technological world that keeps evolving faster and faster. No one has all the answers. This year I feel inclined to take it a bit slower.

Adrenaline was helpful. In a way it’s more difficult this year when much is already in place. But I’m even more optimistic. My vision of what I can control is different but it’s becoming clear.

I’m assessing the foundations built in 2010 and what they will support in the coming year.

I’m hoping that you’re also thinking about you and your business about now: How to give up what’s in the environment that you can’t control and keep moving ahead. What are you planning for 2011?

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Marketing isn’t easy. If you want results.

Posted on November 26, 2010. Filed under: Advertising, Communications, Marketing | Tags: , , , , , , |

To make the realities in this post easier to swallow, listen to Sinatra’s swingy version of “Nice ‘n Easy.”

I just had dinner with my friend Mary Kay who’s a research consultant. We were talking about how difficult it seems in these dollar-tight days for marketing companies and consultants to be valued for the expertise they bring to the table. Everybody’s afraid to commit budget these days, and many companies are adopting a DIY or make-do approach. How to make the case to prospects and clients that failing to get the marketing help they need is counterproductive? Especially in a rapidly evolving marketing environment.

Then, like a flash, I remembered a piece of sublime wisdom that I learned from Al the Drain Man, my highly competent plumber – who is a big Frank Sinatra fan and also inspired the musical post today.

Al once shared his mantra with me: Nothing is easy.

He developed this belief over time after countless responses to calls where customers (including me the day he told me this) implored him, “Al can you get over here for fifteen minutes. I just have a simple and easy thing. It’ll take you no time. The sink’s dripping and driving us crazy (or whatever) and I’m sure it just has to be tightened up.”

Al would show up, take one studied look and realize that — counter to the customer’s amateur assessment — he was dealing not with a simple loose fitting, but years of neglect, or the incompetence of the original installer, or an unpredictable shifting of the soil under the house or a thousand other unforeseen problems.

Al would then use his experience to diagnose the real problem and spend the time required to resolve it. Even though it might have taken hours – not minutes – undoubtedly his expertise and skill would make it a faster and better job than were he a less accomplished craftsman.

Because it feels safer, we humans tend to minimize what’s required to resolve a problem or reach a goal. Often a prospective client will say to us, “We don’t have a budget. We’re just a start-up.” This, of course, doesn’t bode well for future success. Or we’ll hear, “We just need a press release (or a web page). Could you do that for us?” Sorry. Not if you really want to accomplish something.

Successful marketing just isn’t that easy. There are more and more moving parts and it can take a skilled marketing or PR practitioner to provide the thinking, strategy and implementation required to get those parts moving in synch. Companies need to plan for marketing and commit realistic budgets in order to compete in a more and more diverse, complex and competitive marketing arena.

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It’s not Business. It’s personal.

Posted on September 30, 2010. Filed under: Advertising, Communications, ecommerce, Human Business, Jazz, Marketing, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

This post is about human business. The musical post isn’t directly related. It’s a song I love, Don Quixote, a beautiful song by Brazilian composer/singer Milton Nascimento. I guess I hope that the concept of human business isn’t tilting at windmills. Hope it catches on.

I want to share with you a current project of mine that will be the role model for all of my future business development. And I hope for yours, too! The project is incredibly challenging and complex from the standpoint of strategy and implementation. It is joyous from the standpoint of trust, collaboration and respect among my client and business partners.

I launched this client’s bricks and mortar business 16 years ago. Her successful business model was based on quality, service, community and charity. Since the launch we have both evolved. I am now helping her to expand a spin-off division of her company online. We’re building an ecommerce site and planning a robust online and traditional marketing kick-off.

My partners in this endeavor are Bernadette Nelson and Dave Lostracco. Bernadette is a highly talented graphic, brand identity and website designer who codes as well as designs her sites. This is pretty rare. She was born in Paris and is a fearless sportswoman and good friend. She and I co-author a monthly column, Working the Web, for the Fairfield and Westchester County (Conn, NY) Business Journals.

Dave is a Renaissance Geek. (My new coined phrase.) He is a sublime techie, a veteran high-level operations guy for Group W, a musician, a recording studio owner, an SEO and Google AdWords expert and an incredible human being.

As a marketing team we are intensely focused on creating a seamless experience for our client. We want her to feel that we have her back so that she can relax and enjoy this new chapter in her business.

Our client, who will go unidentified so we don’t spill the beans before the launch of her site, is the perfect collaborative client. She is extremely excited about the expansion of her business and the opportunities it brings – albeit with a touch of normal anxiety. She recognizes that she has a role to play in the success of this project. Certain things can only be done by her. And she does them in an engaged and timely fashion.

We vendors so appreciate that our client appreciates us and trusts that we have her best interest at heart. We do! Her overt recognition makes us even more dedicated to her success.

We have communicated to each other – client and vendors – that we feel like friends. This makes the quality of our interaction so enjoyable. There’s a lot of positive emotion that we’re all putting into this. Personal makes business so much more rewarding – and successful!

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How to Succeed in Magazine Publishing: A Winning Formula

Posted on September 17, 2010. Filed under: Advertising, Communications, Content, Entertainment, Jazz, Marketing, News, Nonprofit, Not-for-profit, Public Relations Marketing | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

In honor of Moffly Media’s inaugural A-List Awards (read on) today’s musical post is “Shaking the Blues Away” sung by Doris Day. eMail readers need to log-on to listen.

The other evening I had the pleasure of attending an inaugural awards event created by Moffly Media, a local magazine publishing company here in Fairfield County, Connecticut. It turned out to be one more step on a successful path that is keeping the company growing as other publishers are shedding titles and even closing their doors.

The A-List Awards brought back a touch of glamour that hasn’t been seen or felt around here since the onset of the Great Recession. It was done just right; not over the top. And, the awards were perfectly targeted to the advertiser and subscriber base of Moffly’s décor title, atHome Magazine. The well-produced program recognized the top area talent in interior and landscape design and architecture.

It was a great strategic move. And it was handled with sensitivity given the fact that we’re not quite sure we should be celebrating yet. But it sure felt wonderful to all who packed the landmark Westport Country Playhouse. The event benefited a fitting organization – Habit for Humanity of Fairfield County – which made us all feel better about feeling good!

The evening aptly demonstrated the concept at the core of Moffly Media’s success – local community. The family-owned operation began in 1987 when Jack Moffly retired from a 33-year career with Time, Inc. He and his wife, Donna bought the 40-year-old Greenwich Review and ran it as publisher and editor respectively.

They changed the name to Greenwich Magazine. They made it a beautiful glossy dedicated to the upscale Greenwich lifestyle and the singular people who populate the town. Most of all they contributed to the fabric of the community through their personal involvement in its life.

 

Using the same uber-local approach, Jack expanded into other towns with Westport Magazine, New Canaan-Darien Magazine, Stamford Magazine, as well as atHome. In 2007 he stepped down as publisher and turned over the reins to son Jonathan Moffly, who had joined the family business in 1998. Jonathan was involved in the expansion of titles over the years and since becoming publisher has added online, events and custom media divisions.

Moffly Media has been bold in trying new things, yet it’s grown in measured steps that maintain its basic values and leverage its capabilities. If something works, they apply it elsewhere. For instance, a larger-format private label magazine it developed for a client was so stunning that it led to a re-design of atHome in the same mold.

The company hires top people who are knowledgeable about the towns in which they work and/or their areas of specialization. For example, it tapped Camilla Herrera, longtime features writer for the Stamford Advocate, as editor of the new Stamford Magazine when she became available after newsroom cutbacks at the daily. And James M. Gabal, another Time, Inc. vet recently joined to head Custom Media.

The Moffly’s are terrific business people. They know how to add value for advertisers. The A-List Awards are a perfect example, as are the quarterly DesignDistrict evenings they run to showcase advertisers in the towns they serve. Print and online advertising and sponsorships are another way. They understand PR, too, and the behavior required to maintain a stellar reputation.

The Moffly team seems to share a sense of humanity and respect for all its constituents – readers, advertisers and the advertising/PR/marketing agencies who interact with them. They’re good folks. And it’s nice to see good people succeed!

Other publishers – even those who put out national titles – can learn from Moffly Media’s model. Each audience is, in essence, a ‘local community’. Treating them as such works in print, online and in person everywhere.

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Back on the Content Wagon

Posted on July 31, 2010. Filed under: Advertising, Communications, Content, Inbound Marketing, Internet Research, Internet Traffic, Jazz, Marketing, Public Relations Marketing, Social Media | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Jeff, the love of my life, was practicing his drums this morning to this killer big band tune from George Benson’s Big Boss Band album – “Without a Song.” It struck a chord because content is the ‘song’ of a blog. Enjoy listening and read on for the relevance.

You may notice that it’s the last day of July and this is my first blog post of the month. My days have been full creating content for others and working on a couple of exciting new ecommerce sites that we’ll promote via a content marketing strategy. I, who am thoroughly convinced of the role consistent online content creation plays in business success, fell off the content wagon.

I only created one other piece of content under my own banner this month. It was ‘Working the Web’, the column I co-author for the Fairfield and Westchester County Business Journals with my web development/graphic design partner Bernadette Nelson of Studio B Visual Communication. Ironically the topic was “6 Tips for Getting Over the Content Hurdle.”

What resulted from the column has provided a huge reminder that for my business, content is job one. I’ll share the story, because it’s critical for your business, too.

The first tip in the column is that to begin creating useful content, it’s first necessary to buy in to the fact that this is an important business objective. To support that statement to the Business Journals’ small business audience, I went searching for some recent study data.

Thanks to Google, I found the stats I wanted in the Small Business Success Index, a study created by Network Solutions and the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business. I quoted the study in the column.

Working the Web runs in the two Journals’ print editions and also on www.westfaironline.com. Yesterday, it posted online. Within hours, I received an email from Shashib Bellamkonda, Social Media Swami for Network Solutions."Shashi Bellamkonda of Network Solutions"

Remember that the reason this content making for the web works so well is that it’s searchable and findable by people with an interest in certain search terms. Obviously Shashi monitors the web to see where Network Solutions’ content is being disseminated. He found, read – and liked — the column that mentioned the NetSol study.

Shashi emailed to say ‘thanks’ for the mention – and to invite Bernadette and me to write a guest post for Network Solution’s www.growsmartbusiness.com blog. He also tweeted the url to the column to his almost 11,000 followers on Twitter – and is now following my tweets.

The takeaway: Well-made content created for a relatively local audience, once put online, can yield much farther-reaching connections and additional credibility for our businesses.

Given that blog posts are highly searchable and that I’m going to tag this one with his name and the study, Shashi will surely see it. So, thanks Shashi, for helping me get back onto the ‘content wagon’ and for a good idea for this post. Looking forward to writing one for you!!

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Buyer Personae, Meet Brand Personalities

Posted on February 12, 2010. Filed under: Advertising, Inbound Marketing, Internet Traffic, Jazz, Public Relations Marketing, Social Media, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , |

To celebrate the end of the week and get us groovin’ into the weekend hit the play button for pianist Gene Harris’ version of ‘Put it Where You Want It’. More about why this selection at the end of the post. If you’re getting this by email – visit the blog to listen.

In inbound marketing we encourage clients to imagine their important audiences as Buyer Personae – individual types with particular qualities, characteristics and personality traits. Subsequent marketing to buyer personae becomes more focused and resonates more authentically with customers and prospects.

Lately, in consulting with a number of small and mid-sized businesses, I’ve started formulating some thoughts about Brand Personalities. Beyond the visual identities/logos, and overarching brand promises/values that marketers work hard to put forth with consistency, brands have personalities.

Like humans, brand personalities are comprised of a variety of traits and behaviors that can and should be displayed appropriately depending upon the audience, the interaction and the venue.

A brand may be dead serious about R&D and product safety. It may be playful in marketing promotions and intellectually curious in establishing thought leadership. It might be daring – or risk averse. It could be an advocate for its employees and a kind neighbor that gives back through voluntarism or philanthropy. It could be a no-nonsense negotiator in protecting investor value.

Companies need to consider their own personality traits when establishing their online presence. The array of social media and Web 2.0 tools offer ample opportunity to share various brand personality attributes in different ways.

For example, a firm’s website might present its most formal face to the general array of possible visitors: prospects, customers, referral sources, prospective funders, industry analysts, media, etc. There might be a calendar page listing upcoming events, speaking engagements and so forth. There might also be a page where the company’s philosophy of community involvement is described. Other pages would present products and services.

Offsite tools can make the personality traits associated with each aspect of your company and its activities come alive. Put the photos from a recent speaking engagement or community service event on Facebook, tagging noted guests, officials and employees. You can also share fan-only promotions, offers and contests there.

Post PowerPoint decks from analyst briefings on Linked In and solicit comments and questions. Share comments that highlight your understanding of your business on blogs and sites that cover your industry.

Use Twitter to tap into issues of importance to your key audiences, then comment, showing concern as well as expertise and sharing information that adds value to the conversation. Leverage your brand’s knowledge base on your blog, sharing insights from employees in various roles and commenting on industry developments, company issues, and customer concerns.

Regardless of the venue, link every part of your online presence to every other part so that over time those who engage with your company will get a fully rounded picture of your rich and diverse brand personality.

I chose the Gene Harris tune ‘Put It Where You Want It’ from his album Alley Cats for two reasons. First, the album notes say, “Soulful, bluesy, swingin’, hard-bopping, funky – which of these best describes the two-fisted jazz piano stylings of Gene Harris? Answer: All of them!!” So it is with multi-faceted brand personalities. And, second, you can take the online content that best represents each aspect of your brand and – you guessed it – put it where you want it! Enjoy and see you soon!!

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Nonprofits get a grip!!

Posted on January 18, 2010. Filed under: Advertising, Inbound Marketing, Jazz, Public Relations Marketing, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Click on the Audio Player! (If this is an email, access the tunes online at www.newprwordsandmusic.com)  

I’m about to write a check to the Special Olympics. The organization sent me a sweet little card with sports icons all over the envelope and a simple request to support their efforts.

I will not be sending checks to a number of other well-known charitable organizations because I question their judgment in sending me elaborate packets of ‘free gifts’ to maybe make me feel obligated to contribute to their cause.

In addition to ubiquitous address labels – I’ll never send enough snail mails in my lifetime to use them all – I receive note cards, four-color full-size calendars, key chains and combinations of the above in solicitations from nonprofits that I have or have not contributed to.

 As a donor in a tough economy – and as a PR professional and marketer – I say, what are these people thinking? If they can afford to send these expensive mailings, do they really need my donation? As a Baby Boomer I’ve learned that I’ve never had a unique thought in life. If I’m thinking it, I’m part of peer group-think. In other words, I can’t possibly be the only one turned off by this trend in nonprofit marketing.

 As bad as it gets in recessionary times, I give. But I give to organizations of my choice based on my own societal concerns or to organizations that make their case while demonstrating their sense of responsibility in both their missions and their marketing.

 My PR Marketing practice has always included nonprofits. The kinds of mailings I receive almost daily are diametrically opposed to the advice I would give any not for profit client of mine on how to build support.

 How has nonprofit marketing affected your giving inclinations?

There’s only one tune that can accompany this post – Billie Holiday’s God Bless the Child. I’m offering you the bluesy and soulful rendition of the late British phenom Eva Cassidy.

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New Guidelines for Marketing Partnerships: Borrow from Jazz Improv

Posted on January 10, 2010. Filed under: Advertising, Inbound Marketing, Jazz, Public Relations Marketing, Social Media, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Click on the audio player!

I’m writing this on Sunday morning and so what better musical accompaniment than the gospel underpinnings of pianist Les McCann playing his tune The Shampoo in a live recording. I first heard this rousing number back in the 60’s when Cousin Sydney was introducing me to the joys of jazz and blues.

 Having listened to jazz now for more than 40 years, I’ve learned something about improvisation and the creativity it requires and inspires that I try to apply elsewhere in my life. Great jazz improvisers draw from a huge body of common knowledge, structure and rules and then add their own ideas, drawing from personal experience and technical skill. The musicians in a jazz combo listen to each other carefully and build on each others’ ideas.

 The same group can play the same tune 50 times and it will be a new song each and every time. Listen to another group play the song and it will be something else again.

 As the marketing and PR world changes I find myself seeking to build new and different kinds of professional connections. More and more, I think about how jazz music is made as I build business relationships and partnerships for my E.R. Becker Company consultancy. Bringing a complex array of inbound marketing tools and techniques to clients, requires a variety of knowledge and skills and the ability to compose well-structured original material for a new and evolving area of marketing; arranging ‘charts’ – as jazzmen call orchestrations — for unchartered waters.

 So here’s what I ask myself as I think about which other professionals to bring to the table to meet client objectives:

  • Who has the fundamentals down?
  • Who is really talented?
  • Who is curious enough to explore new ideas?
  • Who really and truly listens?
  • Who has the chops to play triple time to the end of the song?
  • Who can jump into a group and shine while creating space for – and even amplifying the light — of others’ contributions?
  • Who gets it that combined creativity is more powerful than ego-driven efforts?

 How are you looking at your business partnerships these days?

 Enjoy and see you soon!

Photo Credit: Jeff Levine

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