Are you thinking about how to triple or quadruple your sales in 2018? After just a little thought, you may discover what these 2 reports from Inc.om and Entrepreneur.com below reveal, that there are some great cities to build your business and achieve strong business results.
And before you’ll do it, you’ll want to take a little time to consider how the market could be peaking, technology changes, and competition in your own market. What really is the 5 year outlook in your city? What would expansion do for the mood and outlook of your staff?
It doesn’t always follow that warm climates translate to business friendly climates, yet the US south might be where the most potential is. Wherever you decide to grow, it’s an exciting challenge that you’ll want to put on the front burner right now. These cities may be the key source of your future business revenue.
Is Growth of 300 to 400% Attractive?
What Makes a Great City to Venture Into?
Inc’s team found that diversity of industry sectors and a pro-business/pro-development political environment makes for the best ROI. Cities such as Atlanta, Houston, Austin, and San Diego get high marks. The reports also reveal other cities which might be a better bet. One aspect they didn’t discuss is the attractiveness of the city as a place to live or visit. A good question for a private moment is, “do I really like this place.” That’s why many SMB owners prefer Florida and California.
The connection between optimism and opportunity shouldn’t be underplayed. Some cities have a great atmosphere and lifestyle and that translates to better quality clients. And who doesn’t want a dream client? Your dream client strategy is simplified when you’re approaching companies in these amazing markets.
In fact, the report suggests we all need to change our attitudes about the cities we thought were ideal for new business development. Cities like San Francisco and Boston may not have the outlook that Fresno, San Antonio, Jacksonville, West Palm Beach, Tampa, or Orlando now possess.
Successful businesses takes risks, with faith in themselves and their staff the driving force
California might be expensive and overly regulated, but if you’re starting up a satellite office to create connections in Los Angeles, San Diego, Orange County and San Jose, the diversified, high tech economy here might be the answer to your business dreams. There’s a market fluidity in California that makes it inviting and perfect for your initial experiments at growth.
Minneapolis downtown courtesy of Wikimedia. Midwestern cities are among the highest rated in recent years.
Entrepreneur Magazine’s List of Promising Cities
Entrepreneur Magazine also published a list of promising cities for new business development. A surprising number of cities in the mid west made it to the top. Lots of potential target cities for your business.
To really know whether a particular city is the right location for your business expansion or new sales growth, you’d need to do extensive research.
It does look as though Florida has the best momentum. However, a multi-city business development strategy for Florida doesn’t come without challenges. Florida is a big state with its own business culture, and the hispanic language element may pose challenges.
This is Where Innovation in New Biz Dev Comes In
California seems the one with the lowest risk, but if you’re stuck with the usual techniques, sales and media channels, and branding that everyone else uses, you might struggle. You need to be innovative.
Growth strategies have to be built on a more organic approach that presents relevant value to specific types of businesses. Getting granular isn’t difficult. I’ve built and laid out digital content paths that created exposure for targeted types of clients all over world. And the quality of client is as good as your online content.
In 2017/2018, your content alone determines who you will land as a future client.
Successfully capturing clients from the UK, China, Russia, I learned the challenges of keeping each type happy. There’s more involved than winning. It’s a great challenge.
If you want to explore new markets in Florida and California, or in Vancouver or Toronto Canada, contact me to discuss it. I score 10 out of 10 on innovation, and that’s the best stat I can present you with in a world where your CV means nothing, your experience is ancient history, and where only your ability to adapt and improve really matters.
Basics of Strategy: Learning to Win Faster, Easier
We never question why the Amazons, Facebooks, and Googles of the digital world soar like they do. We might assume it’s money, and there’s no doubt that funding carries big advantages. However importants funds are, it is strategy that creates the win, not battle tactics, systems, or armies of staff.
These iconic brands have wasted money and learned from it. And they’ve also learned not to compete. Their strategy was to target a promising market, usually on the cusp of some technology trend, then dominate it with minimal worry about competitors. See this interesting post on CNBC about Google and the type of culture they have (including the freedom to fail fast).
This post will be of interest to any marketing person or business owner who want to simplify strategy and use it to win a new job, win their market, or improve their own profitability. Mastery of overall digital strategy is a difficult matter – from plan to strategy design to execution and adopting systems to help you, there’s a lot to know. I’ve discovered that learning and staying on top of it requires a lot of energy and stamina.
“Everybody wants to talk about strategy and competitive advantage, but nobody wants to admit they don’t know what it is,” — Tim Lewko, Vancouver Strategy Consultant.
So why study strategy now? That’s easy — there’s new software called Artificial Intelligence Marketing Software – a brilliant solution that goes way beyond marketing automation to give creative marketers tremendous power to be strategic. And to stay employed, we’ll need to be savvy with the new AI software and its power.
The onus to retrain, reposition, and upskill to stay current with AI will be ours. Businesses and government may not want responsibility for helping us discover how we’ll fit into the workforce in this new era of AI assisted business. This is the big struggle for us all.
This isn’t an article on AI adoption, yet it is difficult to talk about digital marketing or strategy now without AI coming into the conversation. When you have a moment, read this Marketingweek post on the implications of AI for marketing professionals.
With artificial intelligence software making headway in marketing departments, it’s the higher level skills of strategy and planning that will be in demand. Ancient Chinese War Lord Sun Tzu would agree entirely, that higher level strategy formulation is more important than battle tactics – that “tactics are the noise before defeat.”
You’ll find a 8 point plan of basic strategy below.
Western Business Philosophy: Attack Your Competitors Mercilessly
Western thought on business strategy is that you should attack your competitor’s strengths head on and crush them. Sun Tzu advised us to focus on and exploit their weaknesses. A new school of strategic thought is that you should avoid battle entirely – that competition for losers. This means all of your time and resources might go into understanding, engaging and winning the market.
In marketing, you have the ability to create a unique brand that battles for positioning in the customer’s mind. The only actual competition you might face is in buying Adwords and Facebook ads in competition with other businesses. That can be destructive to your budget.
Every once in a while, we may have to listen to some of Sun Tzu’s battle tips, yet avoiding direct warfare is better. And you do that through smart positioning (as Jack Trout wisely advises). As part of your digital marketing strategy, you can position your brand to ruin the value proposition of a noisy, troublesome competitor. In this way, you take control of the market without direct battle, just like Sun Tzu actually did advise.
From Rank Amateur to Beating a Pro
You can master strategy. Years ago, I enjoyed the challenge of chess which you may know is a game of thoughtful strategy. My friend Albert O was a chess champion from the Philippines. That was interesting that I became friends with an expert level chess player. He beat me quickly everytime without much effort (the first time in 3 moves). Embarrassed, I sought and found good chess strategy book from the library and I delved into the different master techniques.
Long story, short, months later, after 30 to 40 games I finally beat him. Time spent on learning strategy is well spent and Albert was pleased that he had to try now to beat me! I don’t believe I ever met someone with a better attitude.
Test to Discover Which Strategy Will Work for You
Interestingly, I found some particular strategies that worked best for me, after trying and testing a variety. I was looking for something basic where I could at least delay Albert from beating me. The Queen’s Gambit or the King’s Gambit seemed to work best against him and others. I don’t know why it worked for me. It could be that players don’t understand how to defend against particular strategies, not what I did.
Your strategy might be one unique to your skills, resources and capabilities, and not a particular thematic approach. For instance, your AI marketing or marketing automation software may encourage you to do things a certain way, when it doesn’t work for your company in your market.
And the matter of resources vs skills is important too. Your strategy might change depending on how much money you have to hire a coach, your coworker’s skills, software and service subscriptions, advertising channels, whether you can improve your product, and with respect to the opportunity in your specific market.
Today, because of how Google and Facebook have monopolized online marketing, business owners just pay to play, and they do it without much strategy. If you search on Linkedin or Indeed.com, you’ll discover little demand for the title: marketing strategist. Because the boss assumes he or she knows enough and can steer the ship. But we know a lot of CMOs are quitting their jobs because being the chief strategist is a tough job and they’re failing.
If you manage a business, you’ll have to learn strategy yourself, and improve, or hire a strategist to help you. If you’re a control freak, that’s fine. Hire them as an assistant. You’ll likely get more business and profit value out of this person rather than hiring another button pusher in your marketing department. With artificial intelligence software making headway in marketing departments, it’s the higher level skills of strategy and planning that will be in demand.
What’s nice about practicing strategy without big money, is how you’ll need to think and work harder. And you’ll certainly have less waste as you learn the ropes.
study your competitor’s strengths and learn how to avoid them or defeat them
discover how to acquire and retain maximum value from customers/clients
create a business model of success to give you market dominance
shape your value proposition in a way that casts light on your opponent’s weakness
identify the tools and resources you’ll use to build your UVP and unbeatable positioning
carry out your plan with an integrated approach which also allows you to leverage your key strengths
Although you’re trying to avoid direct battle with the competition, your prospects are aware of them. We all like to have options. For that reason, you would be wise to use the above 8 building blocks to get your audience focused on your strengths only – to build an undying preference for you.
You destroy your competition by how you present your strengths in relation to customer’s needs and your competitor’s weaknesses.
For instance, Google never bad talks the competition. Google is positioned as an internet service company that gives people what they want. Its competitors didn’t and still don’t. The competition’s weakness is that they needed revenue, but Google didn’t initially need immediate return. Google positioned itself on the word free, fast, and on fulfilling the web searcher’s quest without asking anything in return. It created sustained brand value.
Similarly, Amazon positioned itself as the fastest, most complete online shopping portal. Lots of products and fast cheap shipping has allowed Amazon to take marketshare from brick and mortar stores across the world. The talk of driverless cars and drone delivery bots just drives home the point that competitors can’t do what they can.
What can you do that your competitors can’t?
With artificial intelligence driven marketing software rising, companies are looking to jettison agencies and bring AI marketing in-house. A CEO looking at value and power might not believe an agency can build the necessary top-level skill and expertise in their industry. Nor can they bring the whole agency in-house.
Instead, the smart CEO will look to hire one or two skilled strategists with industry expertise to manage marketing campaigns with the new AI software. It’s both efficient and very powerful. Now more of the marketing budget and time can go directly into their campaign. We could be talking about anywhere from $50,000 to $300,000 more dollars to put directly into marketing campaigns and use AI marketing robots.
That points to a demand for the new type of marketing professional. When the AI tsunami hits, there will be a frenzy to achieve the above situation. Any company that has an extra $300k to put into their marketing will grow marketshare fast. Too much of the budget is going to wages.
Creativity and Innovation Will Make the Difference
Everyone will have marketing automation in place soon. What they don’t have is enough talented, creative senior people who do their work strategically. Let’s face it, if you have a staff of 5 marketers who are talented, your AI marketing solution can really power them up.
AI marketing solutions do the dirty work of testing, timing, and reporting. Your strategists guided by you, can find out if something like the Queen’s gambit or King’s gambit is the best strategy. Or perhaps, they’ll discover they have the power now to use an even higher level strategy, going up against IBM’s Watson system.
On that note, who will win the Marketing AI war? IBM’s Watson or a smaller solution such as Boomtrain or Albert? Whoever is the best strategist.
In all the years managing my own freelance business and while working with digital marketing agencies, I discovered that small business people are great at what they do. Unfortunately, they’re not experts in digital marketing which is a discipline exploding in complexity.
My first recommendation for those who want to improve would be to get my SEO Content Strategy Book and secondly and more importantly, have a digital marketing assessment done. It’s a blueprint, foundation and compass for success.
The insight from a digital marketing audit can grow your confidence and give you focused path with your digital marketing strategy. It’s tough to have a strategy without a good study of your business and market opportunities.
Most SMB entrepreneurs wing it without a guide, and ironically most startups fail. How can you be confident if you’re unsure of what actually drives your online success or where you’re going?
♫Tell me Something Good♫
With understanding comes focus. Focus is an amazing emotional state where friction disappears and a feeling of wellness, clarity, and success appear. Focus is like taking a happy pill. And this is where myself and your digital marketing audit comes into play – it generates focus, energy and a strategic plan of action. How can you not like that? And learning? You’ll discover a wealth of key insight that you can build on.
An audit is a study of your situation and some suggestions about how to improve it. That’s excellent value when it’s all contained in one handy report!
An objective audit helps you discover your digital marketing problem, not to sell you a solution such as a marketing automation subscription. While tools are helpful, it’s almost certain that your content and outreach strategy are the issue. If you don’t discover what you’re doing wrong you won’t progress with something that will work.
The main point or purpose of your assessment is to create an actionable plan and strategy to grow your business. An audit focuses on issues that matter to performance
A website audit isn’t for finding duplicate meta tags and other unimportant facts. The main purpose to discover why you’re not getting traffic, not maximizing what you have, and discovering what’s missing. Here’s some of what I will examine in a detailed report, which by the way is much more than the “technical spidering report” you’ll see most often offered.
DM Audit Checklist:
Your company, UVP and market opportunity assessment – how are you positioned?
review of your top competitors and how they’re positioned
SWOT analysis – what strengths can bolster your digital content strategy?
where are you competitors getting their traffic from?
Identify anchor content
Identify supporting content
Identify main business/services pages
identify downloadables/sharable content
identify main content pathways and conversion success
assess copywriting and visual content
Assess site appearance and UX design – mobile, desktop, layout, scannability, speed
discuss copy tone of voice, content quality, vocabulary, information value
recommendations for improving all of the elements above
SEO Performance Assessment
assess keyword rankings
assess web traffic
assess search engine traffic
assess social media traffic
spider your site, find and assess technical website issues – speed, broken links, meta data, duplicate content, over-optimization, link penalties
setup/review your Google webmaster console issues and warnings
Assess: titles, headings, and Google SERPs snippets, etc
recommendations for improving all of the elements above
I don’t assess video, web design coding, email, or commerce sales statistics. Anything that relates to content performance and how you get your online traffic and how you can maximize performance is what this is all about.
Key Benefits of a Digital Marketing Audit:
assess your analytics and discover what’s wrong with what you’re doing currently
assess your conversion funnel and the ability of your content to move visitors from impact to sales
analyze your significant, personalized unique value proposition and what you might do to improve it
find weaknesses in your content’s power to impact, engage and convince your audience
discover why your SEO strategy isn’t working and what can be done to turn it around
check rankings and assess your keyword strategy and copywriting effectiveness for Google rankings
discover content ideas that may give your business a boost and which assets you absolutely must build to compete and generate awareness
reviewing competitor’s strengths and weaknesses and what opportunities they are pursuing and capitalizing on
become aware of opportunities to rank, build epic content, and convert leads
become aware of new models of success such as excellent websites and content leaders
assessing your social media strategy and how it could contribute to digital marketing
The key to a good digital marketing audit is to assess your content. If you have a few broken links, your site’s running a little slow, or your calls to action aren’t aggressive enough, it’s good to know. However, it’s your content that’s the foundation of your success. This and your outreach strategy is where your focus needs to be.
If your unique value proposition and your content both suck, why not find out why? The sooner you get on the path to optimization and creating value for customers, the faster you’ll grow your profitability.
And with more, happier customers and higher profit, you’re bound to feel better yourself. Contact me now about a digital marketing audit. It’s the foundation of big successes ahead regardless of what industry you’re in. The fee for the complete assessment is $US 695.00
According to recent auto insurance quote surveys, California and Los Angeles are one of the highest cost zones for car insurance coverage. And that’s not just luxury car insurance.
The nature of LA itself where population density, road congestion, and time pressures make for higher than average risk of accidents and claims. But when driver’s automatically and blindly succumb to the belief that everyone has to pay higher auto insurance, they’re going to lose their money.
Whatever area of Los Angeles you live in, having some perseverance in your auto insurance search will pay off. It’s not that insurance company quotes are high and intentionally designed cheat you, it’s that you, your family, and friends don’t try to get the best rates.
And if your family and friends aren’t searching, send them to this post on saving on car insurance. That’s what this post is about, saving mone on auto insurance in Los Angeles County. By searching, you’re making it less likely you’ll get cheated on car insurance quotes.
If you do a search for car insurance rates on a comparison site or an Los Angeles broker’s website, you’ll see how the yearly auto policy rates can vary more than $2000! How long does it take you to earn $2000?
Quest for the Lowest Auto Rate
Google search should always be the starting point of any product or service search. For auto insurance, homes for sale, finding a realtor, finding a mortgage agent, car loan, or home reno contractors in Los Angeles, Google should be bookmarked.
Through Google and the advertisements on this post, you’ll find a number of insurance companies and brokers. The more you check out, the bigger your savings. Don’t give all your money to the big insurance companies. Vary how you search so you don’t get railroaded by online marketing strategists either.
Believe me, I know how they trick you into obsessing about an unimportant issue or your zip code or something else that distracts you from searching for what you want — low auto insurance rates in Los Angeles.
From most insurance providers in Los Angeles, car insurance is a commodity so why should you pay more than you have to? Learn more about saving on car insurance here.
This car insurance quote comparison chart below is a perfect example of the range of premiums and yearly costs. There’s a big difference.
Why does it pay to Shop Around for Insurance Coverage?
The status quo hurts. Your current auto insurance company in LA isn’t going to lower your rates or keep you up do date on savings. They make more money by keeping quiet. As you can see in the above graphic, insurance company rate quotes vary significantly and they’re not going to tell you why. That’s their right. All you can do is shop around for lower car insurance rates in LA specifically, and avoid these nasty realities:
your current insurance provider keeps raising your rates and you’ve done nothing wrong
some auto insurance companies actually use FICO insurance credit scores to raise your premiums even though your credit score has nothing to do with your driving record or risk
uninsured or young drivers living in your home – they feel their presence and possibility of driving your car or truck is a big liability
your zip code is considered more high risk by many insurers even though you live on the edge of the zip code
they assess the risk of your specific moving violations and total violations differently
some insurance underwriters believe that you’re male so you’re guilty before you put the key in the ignition
your insurance company may not lower your rates even though you’re now 10 to 15 years older and deserve a better rate because of your lower risk and better driving record
you may have forgotten to tell them that your situation has changed, your commute has shortened, and children have left home.
The fastest way to eliminate these car insurance problems is to search for alternate providers because your current provider has no incentive to cut your auto insurance premiums. Chances are high that you’ll just stick with them.
Los Angeles Auto Insurance Agents
Northstate Auto Insurance Services Inc
455 W Florence Ave,
Los Angeles, CA 90003, USA
Fiesta Auto Insurance Agency
Address: 611 E Imperial Hwy #102,
Los Angeles, CA 90059, United States
Cost-U-Less Insurance Center
4301 South Figueroa Street,
Los Angeles, CA 90037, United States
Shop around for the cheapest car insurance rates online. Rates vary inLos Angeles, Phoenix, Denver, Seattle, Chicago, Boston, New York, Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, Austin, St Louis, Minneapolis, Green Bay, Charlotte, Tampa, Miami, Orlando, Toronto, Anaheim, Beverly Hills, Malibu, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, Fresno, Santa Clara, Sacramento, Mountainview, Palo Alto, Sunnyvale, Salt Lake City, Riverside, Rancho Cucamonga, Costa Mesa, Thousand Oaks, Simi Valley, Raleigh, Albuquerque, Glendale, Oceanside, Long Beach, Huntington Beach, Carlsbad, Santa Clarita, Temecula, Kirkland, Redmond, Kansas City, St Louis, Stockton, Scottsdale, Palm Springs, Indianapolis, Chula Vista, Escondido, or Santa Monica.
Car Insurance in Los Angeles County California
Serving the communities of Anaheim, Beverly Hills, Malibu, San Bernardino, Riverside, Long Beach, Santa Ana, Lakewood, Glendale, Simi Valley, Torra, Chino, El Monte, Huntington Beach, Fullerton, Pasadena, Torrance, Irvince, Thousand Oaks, Pomon, Ontario, Downey, Yorba Linda, Lakewood, and Downtown LA.
Drivers Save Thousands with Usage-based Auto Insurance
There’s no stopping the relentless rise of auto insurance costs. And for some drivers it is very costly. Consider younger drivers who might pay from $2500 to $5500 for annual coverage, or those with multiple speeding tickets and moving infractions.
They have trouble finding car insurance let alone cheap coverage from an insurance company and typically, their rates rise up 100% to 300% more than we pay. They move downtown without a vehicle or live “insurance” poor lifestyles as a result of their circumstance.
You may be in this situation or know some young drivers who can’t drive because of the cost of car insurance. There’s something you need to tell them about. It’s called usage based auto insurance. UBI lets drivers pay coverage on the driving they actually do and how they do it using a telmatics device.
If you want a lower rate, consider a UBI based insurance policy.
With the telematics devices installed, drivers typically are more conscious of how they accelerate and brake and the types of speeds they travel. UBI turns out to be beneficial for everyone – it lowers insurance costs. We know drivers drive much too fast, change lanes dangerously, and slam brakes on, and this is precisely where accidents happen.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re driving a classic luxury car, truck, motorcycle, or new electric car, insurance rates will rise. The only recourse you have is usage-based insurance and shopping around for a better quote. When self-driving cars hit the road, auto insurance rates for human drivers will explode. Get the jump on this and explore usage based auto coverage.
The Usage based telematics devices help to discourage dangerous driving habits. For young drivers, it’s a godsend because it may prevent them from developing bad driving habits, and helps avoid that first accident.
It’s true, car drivers from Los Angeles to Toronto to Miami to New York are eyeing a new trend in automobile insurance coverage. It’s called usage-based auto insurance.
The global insurance telematics market size is forecasted to grow from US$857 million in 2015 to US$2.2 billion in 2020. That is a $1.3 Billion growth in 5 years. This is a major trend in the auto insurance industry, comparing equally to the enormous trend buying insurance online.
UBI telematics is all about monitoring driving, collecting data, and tying car insurance premiums according to how, where, and how much the driver drives. It’s being adopted at a faster rate in Europe, however adoption the US and Canada has been a little more subdued. How much can you save with UBI? Some reports have it at about 12%. If your insurer doesn’t offer usage based insurance, consider switching insurance providers. And if you drive a luxury model car, telematics is perfect for certifying your safe driving and limited mileage.
What are Usage-based Car Insurance Policies?
The term usage-based auto insurance describes the use of GPS or cellular activated electronic tracking device to monitor the insured driver’s speed, braking and acceleration habits, along with distance and time driven. The policy is normally one where you may be offered good rates in future (a discount) if your driving habits meet the company’s safe driving guidelines. The device may be one affixed to your automobile or could use a plug-in device on your own smartphone. The trend is to use your smartphone’s own software and hardware sensors.
CMtelematics of Cambridge Massachusetts is a leader in telematics technology and they’re leading the charge into smartphone telematics devices. Their claim: “Personalized scores, continuous feedback, and incentives result in better driving behavior. Customers report 34% fewer crashes and 20% less-severe claims.” Their DriveWell technology uses machine learning and statistics to accurately infer key metrics about vehicle mileage, road types, speed, acceleration patterns, phone distraction, and collisions).
What Telematics or UBI devices measure:
Acceleration and cornering behavior
the distance the car travels
the time of day the vehicle is driven
where the vehicle is driven
UBI insurers are a little vague about how it actually judges driving behavior and by not divulging this, drivers aren’t sure if the UBI system is accurate. Is UBI simply a strategy to glean more profits from consumers? If drivers are refusing to adopt UBI telematics, it probably indicates distrust.
Some drivers themselves consider UBI telematics a key to encouraging better driving behavior. And some data now is suggesting that drivers actually do drive more carefully after installing the devices. Researchers aren’t quite certain whether this improving driving behavior is due to a desire to lower their rates, or because it’s a cue to behave more responsibly. Whichever way is true, the use of these tracking devices is a big turning point for the industry The “Big Data” people are really onboard with this since all of this driving data could be collected and used for commercial, profit-generating purposes. You’d think the insurance firms would be willing to lower your rates even further to gain better access to the data, and to lower accident claims.
UBI Infographics – Driver Attitudes
Surveys are showing a gradual interest in UBI policies if they get a discount. It’s not a reach to say aggressive drivers have no interest in having their driving behavior assessed and a price attached. The aggressive driving factor is the issue that covers gender, age, and even usage matters.
Who Will Pay for the Insurance Industry?
Like Alcohol and tobacco pay a lot of government bills, bad drivers may actually be where the profit margins are for big insurers. The one lost fact here is that in our society, bad behavior is taxed and punished financially and it’s a big boom to profits when insurance companies such as Progressive, Geico, Allstate, Mercury, Liberty Mutual, etc. have an excuse to raise rates. Bad drivers are actually a profitable group and it’s acceptable to charge them to the hilt (even male drivers who have never had an accident).
With self-driving electric cars on the horizon, the insurance industry is preparing for a substantial drop in revenue. Whether UBI is the way they want to go is questionable. The final thought is that UBI can help drivers save a little on their insurance. As I pointed in my car insurance quote comparison, bigger savings are accrued from shopping online.
Automobile drivers have direct access to hundreds of insurance companies. Are you reaching out to hear them?
Check out insurance for cars and trucks in your city:
One way to get the lowest car insurance rates is to use a telematics device. If your driving behavior is erratic and aggressive, the insurer may not offer you lower rates so bad drivers may not benefit at all. However, for responsible drivers, Usage Based Insurance coverage is an option that could reduce your rates even further. If you’re older and not seeing lower rates, the UBI option proves your better driving habits and perhaps that you’re not on the road as much as a younger driver. With data at hand, it will be tough for the insurance companies to actively discriminate against certain groups of consumers.
What if you discovered that a move to a new city could really give your life a lift? Would you do it? Could you do it? If you’ve been struggling with this thought before, maybe you need to assess your actual state and figure out if another city or country might be a good choice?
I’ve made some big moves over the years, so I know how moving to a new city can be a thrill and revive your personal and work life. But relocating isn’t easy, and it’s usually driven by a salary change, layoff, or personal event and involves the kind of financial pain you’ve probably imagined.
But you know what, if our lives suck, well, we need to pull away from the video games, Facebook posts, hot yoga classes, reality TV shows, cooking classes, and tedious routines and start planning a change.
Hundreds of thousands of Canadians and Americans make the decision to relocate every year. 2018 might be a record year given how many babyboomers are retiring and how many Millennials are moving to find a good job. 2016/2017 were unusual years where a large number of people sold their homes for outrageous amounts. Off they went to Florida, California, Texas, Costa Rica and other places too weird to comprehend.
I’ve moved about 20 times during my life, and I wouldn’t imagine that’s too far above the national average. Certainly some people don’t move often, particularly baby boomers. Yet more of us are exposed to the insecurity of todays job market and when money pressures hit, we suddenly become open to the idea of relocating.
If you didn’t have the debt, obligations, and had better self-esteem, would you do it?
My friend Adam from Wisconsin has moved to Australia, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Montana and Canada. He’s got more courage than anyone I’ve ever known and always finding a way to get things done. He’s had some tough moments but he’s avoided staying stuck. That kind of openness to interesting change is inspirational.
And I’m sure that’s been an influence on when you’ve moved, beginning with when you got out of college. That’s when the biggest changes in direction take place.
A good majority of people get comfy with their jobs, which is fine. It’s a good common sense, low stress lifestyle, where you build wealth and a life. Okay you’ve been there, done that. Very smart but it came with a price which is a lack of challenge, growth, exploration, and just novelty. We all need to grow, face new unstructured situations and shed boredom and the burdens of the past. Some people move just to freshen up their lives and feel alive again.
Sir Richard Branson moved to the British Virgin Islands, and for an old guy, he seems to be doing okay and enjoying things.
So if you’ve been stationary for a while, you and your spouse might begin considering a move far from the usual. And it doesn’t mean you won’t ever come back. It just means you can sell your house for a fortune and start something completely fun and interesting elsewhere.
I was just thinking of an old school friend who moved to the San Diego area from Canada. What a great choice. His postings on Facebook show he and his wife are feeling adventurous and having fun again. They had a mini vacation in Mexico. How many people get to do something like that? Could moving be one of the few ways you can relive the joys of childhood? It’s so good that we have a chance to wipe the slate clean and start over — fresh as a dip in the ocean.
When you have completely new, unfamiliar unstructured situations, whole new areas of your brain get activated, from emotional to cognitive. You pick up new interests and skills and meet new people. The fact is, our brain needs something new to feel engaged and enjoy new relationships. And when the brain is activated, the body comes alive too. For those in poor mental and physical health, a change might be good for its own sake, as they say.
10 Sure Signs You Need to Move to a New City
Now that I’ve got you thinking about moving to a new city, and wondering which are the best cities to move to, let’s see if moving is a actually a good idea for you. Here’s 10 good reasons why moving might be good for you. In fact, if you have many of these factors, it may save your life.
1. You’re Bored, Irritated and Complain a lot – this means there is a mismatch between you and what your current ife/city has to offer. Staying put means putting up with less life than you deserve and trying too hard to make it work.
2. Your Mental or Physical Health is failing – which means you’re eating and drinking too much, lacking energy to exercise, and you’ve stopped participating in social activities.
3. You’re Chronically Unemployed or Unhappy with the Work you Do – your current city doesn’t have the type of work you enjoy doing and you struggle to generate sufficient income.
4. You Can’t Pursue your Passion – if you’re a mountain biker, kite surfer, or snow skier and you live on the dry prairies or in a concrete jungle, you feel trapped and sufocated.
5. You’ve Heard about a Fascinating Place – in the distance is an exciting city of Gold you’ve heard about and you can’t help comparing it to what you have where you are.
6. You’ve Always Lived Where you Do – you’ve lived your whole life in one spot and have never ventured anywhere and time is beginning to run out.
7. You Hate the Climate – you cringe at the mention of snowy blizzards or scorching hot days and you long for the other side.
8. You’ve had a Major Family Change – you’re now divorced or close family or friends have moved or died and thus your current lifestyle has lost its usual anchors leaving your life without purpose.
9. There’s Someone Really Special in Another City – A special person who seems to be all you want can keep you transfixed on that location, waiting for the opportunity to do your Valentine’s thing:)
10. You Can’t Afford to Stay – Those who live in Los Angeles, Toronto, Vancouver, Miami, New York City, or the Bay Area are an example of being where you can’t afford to live anymore.
If you can relate to 10 of these move factors, then Wow, you really should be researching the best cities to move to. What a lot of people don’t realize is that time is running out, opportunities and situations dissipate, and our health could suffer if we don’t move to a place that’s more compatible. We don’t realize the high health costs associated with disappointment, friction and disengagement.
Write down all the reasons you can’t or won’t move, just so you can see them.
You’re thinking about whether you and your family will have a better life in the new city. That’s the pros and cons comparison thing you need to do. Do your research and identify one city that makes the most sense.
You probably already think you know which city it’ll be. However, after doing your study, you might find that location really isn’t the right one for you, or that the risks are very high. A quick visit there might bear it out. You could meet a lot of people who can’t wait to get out of that city or state. And the economy might not be sustainable. Look at the oil price collapse and what it did to the people who just bought homes in the oil towns. There is a possibility of disaster.
If you’re bored, restless, and not engaged in the life you want, it’s a no-brainer. You’re going somewhere. If you’re young, this is just the first time in your life you’ll go through this so be more proactive. It’s a life skill. Why not be smart about it?
I’d suggest keeping your mind open about the ideal potential cities for you and your family.
And if the cons outweigh the pros, and it seems you’re already living in your own paradise, then you won’t be moving. Still, it’s important to know you have options.
Are your current clients bubbling with enthusiasm about your work? Are you being a big hit together? No? Well it might be you have the wrong clients. All the drama and misery you’re enduring is unecessary.
If your consulting or marketing agency clients aren’t giving you glowing commendations about your work and contribution, you’re doing no one any favors by continuing with them.
Get the right clients and everything changes. This post on strategy reiterates what should always be your strategy – to identify your goal/ideal, then work your way back from there. Our beginning is the end – a happy customer who feels one single emotion – fulfilled. There’s something for every company or consultant below, and this post is updated constantly. Please bookmark it and come back again.
Let’s Explore Dream Client Strategy.
This is the EPIC post you’ve been waiting for. There’s tips wrapped in a strategy that will lead you to better business outcomes for you and your clients. And even if you don’t get your dream clients soon, you might discover your current clients suddenly will like you a whole lot more.
Acquiring dream clients is about positive outcomes. The real value in striving to acquire them is in how you improve your technique, strategy, and unique value proposition. You’ll learn more about yourself and your actual value which might sting at first, but soon will be your primary source of knowledge and skills growth. It won’t be perfect but it will take your life to a new level.
In business, you could work for great clients or employers who are sincere, intelligent, who want to build extraordinary outcomes. You might earn 100x more with these clients as opposed to a client from hell, who runs you both into the ground. Is it time you jumped off that rat wheel?
Take a quick scan down the page and you’ll see a study and actionable plan to help you supercharge your client acquisition and revenue simultaneously. It finishes with important questions to ask yourself and includes dream client meeeting preparation tips.
I know you’re skeptical. That’s fine, we all are. But it won’t take long for you to grasp the potential of Dream Client Strategy. Here’s the sections:
Why Dream Clients are the Best
Why You Don’t Have Dream Clients
The 5 Steps of Your Dream Plan
Right Now You’re Irrelevant
Two Keys: Optimism and Confidence
Dream Client Persona Development
Planning for Your Dream Client Meeting
More Questions to Ask
The Key Goal to Creating your Dream Client – One Single Emotion
Dream Client Strategy — Sounds Wonderful!
It is, and it could easily generate hundreds of thousands of dollars for you as a freelancer, or millions if you operate an agency. In fact, below you’ll read about a Toronto marketing agency that takes it seriously. And what it takes is faith in yourself.
Few agency CEOs bother targeting perfect clients and instead, cast a wide net to work with whoever they get. Word of mouth is a good example of walk in traffic. The difference in money and satisfaction is staggering. And you won’t need hand me down anything when you get this strategy in place.
Imagine if you Landed just One Dream Client
This new EPIC business post covers a repeatable process of determining who your ideal client is and positioning your UVP to attract and win them over. I’ve done it and I know it’s worth it. Yet it is more difficult today, so let’s be positive and certain that we will succeed.
Dream Clients are the Essence of a Successful Business
The one thing all successful employees, freelancers, and businesses have is great customers, employers or clients. That’s what success is – great customers or clients to serve.
According to a study from Mark W. Schaefer, an internationally-acclaimed college educator, author, keynote speaker, and strategy consultant, 3 to 4 buyer personas usually account for over 90% of a company’s sales. Our best clients generate our revenue. You can’t escape this.
As we venture into this topic, you’ll learn a repeatable, ever-improving process of understanding and focusing on the best clients possible. I’m happy to say I’m learning at a high rate myself and I’ll be updating this post with more insight and resources. Please return later.
We Deserve Fantastic Clients not Crappy Ones
Raise your Standards. Targeting and winning a quality client shows you’re serious about your business. Because if you have crappy clients, the future can’t look all that good. Once you’ve had dream clients, you won’t want crappy ones again. It’s not just money. It’s about living well. And it’s about working with people who’ll inspire and elevate you and make every second count.
Show You Do Care. This EPIC post on attracting and capturing dream clients is well worth sharing with friends and coworkers right now. There’s nothing more important you’re going to read today. From a 5 step plan to tips on how to maintain the dream client relationship, it’s all you need to know to take your business to the level it deserves.
It’s most likely because you’ve never tried, understood who they are, or had a plan or strategy. From experience alone, I believe these are the most important reasons why. Here’s some reason below. Read all of them because the pain and frustration you feel can help you give up on your old techniques.
low reach; they don’t know you exist or you were a flash in the pan
successful people are busy and you aren’t intercepting or disrupting them
successful people are obsessed with their routine business activities not being open to new solutions
dream clients prefer specialists who are very good at whatever is their biggest pain point
they don’t believe you offer anything special or of significant value
dream clients have big expectations in terms of fit and character
competition is overwhelming and you haven’t found a way to be more competitive and make the competition disappear
you’re not yourself right now, you’re depressed or trying too hard and prospects are unsure who you really are
your offer isn’t personalized and relevant enough to them (someone else is more relevant than you)
you haven’t done enough research to identify your dream client accurately
you haven’t shown thought leader type knowledge of their market and situation
your style, tone of voice, and topics don’t appeal to them
you’re too much this or not enough that
you’re not catching their attention with a specific topic or a news item they’re very keyed into
your brand image is unfocused – they can’t figure you out
you have too much clutter for them to weed through
you’re not telling what you like and admire so they can feel appreciated
they don’t believe you really care about what they’re doing
Aside from SEO You’ll need to do some awesome outreach.
Okay, do you see how competitors have beaten you? You haven’t taken control of Dream Client’s field of vision, concerns, or their values. Here’s a simple 5 step plan that gets you on your way:
The 5 Steps of Your Dream Plan
Just to get oriented, let’s map out a 5 Step Beginning Plan:
a brief summary of what you offer and what makes you unique
a brief statement of your target customer or dream client
how you’ll get in front of them
how you’ll convince them of your value and relevance
how you’ll make beautiful music together – you become their dream partner
When I created my dream clients previously, it was easy. There were few competitors and prospects had a unified view of the help they needed. Now competition is insane and the prospect’s view is fragmented. Worse, many don’t even believe digital marketing works — it’s worthless.
That’s why a plan and strategy are so vital – for reach, visibility, impact, and convincing them you have a powerful and sustainable solution.
However, discovering who our dream clients are, what their interests and preferences are, and then connecting with them on their terms online is very difficult. That’s where attitude comes in.
Step 1: Define What you Offer
Take my situation as a marketing services provider.
— I generate leads and sales by attracting high quality targeted traffic and then strategically position my client’s brand and value proposition via epic content marketing pieces so their UVP is impactful, significant, engaging, and convincing, and they sell like crazy.
That’s a little long winded, however it’s important to highlight traffic, engagement and revenue since these are client’s 3 biggest pain points.
Step 2: Describe your Dream Client
— A SMB manager or professional in California who needs broad visibility on Google and high quality content marketing to engage and convince their prospects
Your ideal client may be in a number of industries in Florida, New York, California or Canada, so you can break your ideal clent down into let’s say 5 unique categories (e.g., legal, real estate, professional services, travel, finance) and geo location.
Step 3: How Will I get in Front of Them?
— I will use Google, Linkedin, Facebook (and email) to position content in relation to their search for perspectives, insight, data, and solutions they believe will serve their needs.
They will never find me via topics I am interested in. They search for solutions and information using their own unique inquiry process and questions. Therefore, I must write and create beginning with their problems and interests in mind.
Step 4: How Will You Convince Them?
— By blogging and posting unique perspectives with authoritative yet friendly insight into topics they believe are relevant and timely in their industry, and which makes an emotional impact to create one single emotion that makes them focus on me and my solution.
Convincing means bringing their beliefs into a new alignment and dissolving their fears because they don’t act until they feel good about it.
Step 5: How Will You Make Beautiful Music Together?
— I will show them how our work together will grow and sustain itself to create a feeling in them that results will only get better in the years ahead. I will reinterate why our dream business partnership will work and how we will share a role in it and help them see the vision of where we’re going.
You’ve got to allay their post-purchase anxiety before they purchase. You’ve convinced them them, but at the zero moment of decision, you must crystalize with a clear and fulfilling vision.
What I discovered previously is that BIG VISIBILITY gets their attention and is absolutely necessary. That means high Google rankings and a good social media strategy will be part of your “Dream Repertoire.” Patient positioning on the right topics is where it’s at. And it doesn’t matter what business you’re in.
Good prospects will be quietly impressed that you’re in the right zone, and are potentially a good choice. They’ll use their own process to check you out deeper. They don’t let enthusiasm get in the way of good judgement.
They’ll Talk to You When They Know You
So you’re thinking, how do you reach and connect with your dream client if they won’t talk with you? You have to let them find you, and discover your message of how relevant you are (your EPIC online content).
Did you know your marketing content determines which clients or customers you get? So does your choice of topics, words, phrases, characters, stories and tone of voice. That’s the thing here, is that we need to discover enough about them to build a pathway to their deepest gaps and dreams and then slowly build a pleasant relationship with them.
Right Now, You’re Unknown and Irrelevant
If you get turned down or discriminated against, it’s because you weren’t the right fit, which means you don’t fit into their dream. They believe you’re irrelevant to their goals and how they want to solve them.
We need to develop a target client persona and formulate a laser like understanding of the most essential needs they have. We need to look at their most recent activity and drill down to find the ideal they’re searching for. And we’ll need to speak to them via the media they like. That could be a blog, video, unique web design, visual content marketing piece, or a top ranking spot on Google rankings. They get the ball rolling.
Optimism and Confidence aren’t Skills, They’re a Vital Attitude
I really admire those who pursue ideals, because it takes the time, money, confidence, and an optimistic frame of mind that I want to have. That’s the kind of leader anyone wants to work with. Their forward vision carries you along in their tailwind, lifting your outlook and giving you courage and confidence you didn’t think you had.
Focusing on high paying dream clients isn’t what this is about. However, dream clients will certainly pay more, and those with no resources might be the wrong clients to get involved with. Price depends on what they feel your perceived value is.
What Dream Clients Need
Here’s a quick list of why it’s smart to pursue dream clients, just to ease you into this topic of targeting ideal clients:
ideal clients have the specific opportunities/gaps that you can fufill
dream clients need your specific skills, attitude, and experience
dream clients need your leadership
dream clients will appreciate you more and thus will be sustainable clients
dream clients want reliable providers/partners — and you’ll be able to cut down on your new client prospecting efforts
dream clients know you aren’t the recognized greatest, but they know they will turn you into the greatest — they’re confident they can turn their partners into market leaders
they need more money, enjoy more time and freedom, and to be happier
they need confidence, focus, and support
You Must Maintain 100% Responsibility for the Relationship
Client management is a big task that we often neglect. But as your client goes, so goes you. You have to take care of your precious dream client.
This is one area I failed in and I’m still having trouble with it. I didn’t remove barriers for them, keep in close touch, nor keep my dream clients primed for ongoing success. Often I left them on their own (sometimes thousands of miles way) where they becamebored, confused, stressed, lacked inspiration and confidence and thus found progress difficult.
Their imagination imploded and they simply lost it. I discovered they are human. Although I could see some of this beforehand and I questioned them about decisions (some poor quality clients for them) it wasn’t enough to get them back on track.
What I failed to understand well, is that I needed to step up and assume 100% responsibility for the relationship. 0% for them and 100% for me. Not fair, but that’s how it is.
They Think You’re a Leader
Clients view us as dominant leaders – authoritative, fearless and visionary. That’s why they’re hiring us and paying us big money. Yet when I saw that success was making them bored and ineffective, I failed to act and help them overcome their issues. I wasn’t the fearless leader after all.
That’s why you need money in the bank and plenty of new clients waiting. Options give you poise and courage and helps you make better decisions. Because sometimes people in your personal and business life won’t progress or take your advice, you might have to plant your feet. And sometimes they won’t participate or listen.
Let’s face it, if others are taking 0% responsibility persistently, you have to question why you’re involved with them. Or you have to teach them to be more involved in their own success. That’s what client account managers do.
However, in business, dominant leaders need to step up and take 100% responsibility. You’re there because you’re smarter, more optimistic, skilled, visionary, energetic, relentless and confident. Your outlook carries a company in your wake and you may have to keep the captain of the ship focused on the mission.
Keep your client properly directed, focused, informed, feeling good, and you may never have to face that situation where you have to fire them. You’re not a doormat or a cog in someone else’s wheel. You’re someone building genuine, authentic, mutually constructive relationships. And that means big picture planning.
88Creative in Toronto – Chasing the Dream Client
Some marketing agencies are very specific, such as Toronto’s 88Creative who targeted specific companies — with their gutsy Dream Client List. To me, the fact they had this list shows they are on the ball and driving themselves to big successes with great clients. It’s classic big picture thinking that shows us why a focus on details is the stuff of losers.
“We started a ‘dream 100’ client list, thinking about the types of brands and companies that we would love to work with someday, and Warby Parker was on that list,” said Erin Bury, managing director at 88 Creative. “When we heard that they were launching in Canada, we said, ‘okay, this is our chance and we need do something attention-grabbing.’”
Even if 88Creative didn’t land one of their listed dream clients, just doing this makes them think creatively, boldly, to perfect their process, assess results, and improve their attraction to dream clients. I’m not sure of Erin’s full expertise in dream client theory, but she seems very smart. What if you applied this dream client thinking to all of your business activities regardless of what industry you’re in?
And with respect to how 88Creative went about showcasing their attractiveness to dream clients, Erin Bury added, “The goal of this was always to get their attention, but I think the larger goal is to showcase the type of aesthetic we have as an agency and the type of creativity that we put into our ideas.”
That creativity can be expressed very effectively in blogs or marketing magazine articles where you explore the topics clients feel strongly about. The type of aesthetic and creativity should be relative to specfic types of issues prospects face. A lot of agencies exercise all their creative genius, but then apply it to the wrong topics and forget to highlight how they approach solutions.
Whenever prospects call me and say they loved my blogs, they always refer to a topic. It’s the topic itself that inspires them and they like that you recognized the importance of it.
10 More Questions to Ask to Identify Your Dream Clients
Back to analyzing who are your dream clients. Think deep:
who have you enjoyed working with in the past and why was it so enjoyable?
what do they talk about most on their blogs and Facebook page?
what is their biggest problems and complaints?
what topics, keywords, and values do they mention?
what is their idea of heaven?
who are they working with right now?
are they going anywhere or are they spinning their wheels? Why?
who do they talk about and link out to on their website?
how do they talk and what events do they attend?
what is the opportunity gap in markets, content, and visbility they could enjoy?
After you’ve done your surfing, stalking, and assessments, you’ll need to figure out what it is about you that will be compelling to them. That willl be the foundation of your future content strategy and your professional brand.
Yes, you probably should develop a list all of their needs, preferences and ambitions and then explain how your company’s solution is best for them or how you’re the ideal person or agency for them.
But let’s cut to the key stuff now.
What are their outlook, dreams, self-image, brand image, goals, assets, tools, staff, and market opportunity? Are they a winner and how do they view providers?
Dream Client Persona Development
You can use persona development solutions to help you understand your dream client better. I’m not sure it will create miracles for you, but it could help you get better organized. Check out Marianas, a company in San Mateo, California. They use artificial intelligence software to build detailed profiles of target customers.
You’ll need to go beyond software and worksheet templates. You’ll need to ask detailed questions about what your client needs, how they think and make decisions, and how you’ll be meaningful to them. Many times, it means getting out there and meeting them so you can learn their values and prejudices. And don’t think for a minute that you can’t overcome anything.
Wise Planning for Your Dream Client Meeting
When your ideal client invites you for an in-person a meeting, things get real. This is where it’s all about them and how you’ll make a difference. I like what I read in an article by Mike O’Horo about the preparation time for a dream client being months or years.
With all that prep for research, website development, published materials, and content marketing, your next stop is a meeting with them. Here’s some questions ato ask to create your meeting presentation:
what is your goal for the meeting? You need to have a goal, using supporting material (if you have that material). This helps focus their attention on what they’re missing. Set that out in your power point presentation.
what is it specifically you’ve discovered about their business? Use visual graphics to spell it out
list their weaknesses and opportunities – and discuss issues and the future of their business
what qualifies you to be their new advisor/solution provider (relate your relevant experience)
what is impactful and compelling about you, your brand, skills, acumen, and capability? Match their needs with your skills, experience and capability.
what is it you can do or will do to make you better than your competition?
what unique skill or power makes you so over the top good that you launch new buying behavior in your dream client?
explain how the business, decision maker, and influencers (staff) will benefit from your solution
list what their staff criticisms and objections will be and then destroyo each one in the presentation
don’t overrate your personal skills. I’ve spoken with many realtors for instance and none used the words brilliance, genius, master, or even skills. If they were vital then these words would have arisen at some point. Pay attention to their vocabulary.
discuss the ROI and operatonal business affects from solving each pain point.
Prepare for your meeting with your dream client thoroughly and ensure all participants are thrilled and satisfied with your proposition – explain how they all will benefit not just the key decision maker.
When your presentation is good, it makes you look like you care about their buiness. You’ve invested time, thought and energy. it’s likely that no one else has ever peered into their business. You’re the first! That’s something to smile about.
The Key Objective in Creating your Dream Client – One Single Emotion
Your content strategy matches you up with the emotion they feel about the issue and lays out the connections or path they need to take.
And when they feel one single emotion about you, that’s when your dream client contacts you. And they feel powerful that they found you and that it was their decision.
You’ll never achieve brilliance in business unless you’re willing to let go of what doesn’t work. I hope this post revolutionizes what you think about client acquisition and about the content you need to land them. Good Luck!
By the way, SEO and Content Strategy combined will have more impact on your clients than anything else you can do. Clients are always searching, and they’re hoping to find you in those search results. You’d better be there. Check out my book on how to build a dominant presence on Google, engage them, convince them, and show them how you’re the best asset they have.
Here’s a few dream client marketing resources you might useful:
Los Angeles Dodgers on Historic Pace – World Series Champs?
Something strange has happened with the Los Angeles Dodgers this year. In mid May, the team was 22 wins and 18 losses which is middle of the pack, but since then they’ve been on a scorching, unheard of winning pace. It’s an unusual event so thought I’d mention it because it’s an opportunity to see how a successful team or business is created and the type of spirit it generates.
The Dodgers have an unbelievable 89 wins and 36 losses as of August 24, 2017. That’s an historic pace for the team and they could become the winningest team in the majors ever. For all baseball fans, it means enjoying watching a team that is truly EPIC. For LA fans, it’s pure joy.
They have the best pitching this year. And most baseball experts would stop analyzing right there. Pitching is key and even without their star hurler Clayton Kershaw, they’ve got 6 good starting pitchers. They just picked up Yu Darvish which gives LA another unfair advantage and he had an inspired first game striking out 10 batters. And just yesterday, lefty Rich Hill almost threw a perfect game.
It’s been a long time coming for the Dodgers who have to live on old film reels of wonky legged Kirk Gibson hitting that homer back in 88.
Stats Screen Capture courtesy of MLB
Lefty Hyun-jin Ryu gave up 1 hit in seven shutout innings as the Dodgers beat the Mets 8-0.
Why do you suppose this team has caught fire in 2017? Is it the players, manager, owners, or just the commitment of the organization to be the best? Tough to figure out, but let’s take a stab at it.
The Dodger’s Unfair Advantage
An unfair advantage is what makes some teams and businesses for that matter, so successful. Here’s why the scorching hot Los Angeles Dodgers have an unfair advantage:
league’s best, most deep pitching (good pitching shuts down other teams hitting)
excessive number of talented players (competition makes them be at their best)
belief in the quality of the team (the spirit has all of them optimistic and focused)
they’ve sparked a spirit in LA fans after many tough seasons (huge belief and support)
marginal players are now stars (Cory Seager, Justin Turner, Chris Taylor having break out seasons)
winning gets the team in a good mood (even if they hit the skids they have a strong winning feeling and confidence that will take a while to cool)
The passing of their great announcer Vin Scully last year should give this championship extra meaning and inspiration.
Los Angeles has some great home run hitters this year, but they don’t rely on them. Their innovation in manufacturing runs through “small ball” is what makes them unique. Even when shut out of homeruns, they get singles and walks and fill the bases.
They put maximum pressure on their opponents and give themselves every opportunity to win. The LA Dodger management team must have a philosophy of no limits and building strength in every area.
Newcomers to LA are Having Great Starts
In the hitting department, the team is rallying behind the incredible hitting of Cody Bellinger, a shoe in for rookie of the year. Bellinger with the sweet homerun swing is one of the brightest up and coming stars in the game. LA’s lineup is stacked now, with utility players like Chase Utley who can step in where needed. The Fall Classic Forecast: It’s going to be a good post season for Los Angeles.
Of course, Magic Johnson has the Dodgers already picked to win the world series.
Most teams aspiring for a league championship usually beef up their lineups in the summer and often trade up, or sign free agents. LA’s done well with both.
It’s got LA Dodger fans in a tizzy again and this team has so much talent and depth, it will be hard to get them off track. Talent can do a lot because it makes you think you can do anything. It’s a good view for us of what makes a successful business. Inevitably, it’s talent assembled in a good environment and that environment can turn mediocre team members into stars. It all begins by acquiring talent.
No Limits, Big Skills, Innovation, and Focus
Getting rid of limits, having great skills, innovating, and having focus is what makes any business great, and it’s what’s driving the Los Angeles Dodgers to a World Series Championship in 2017.
Artificial Intelligence is Going to Rock Digital Marketing
The future is here and it’s an exciting one we can share in. It involves software that uses artificial intelligence to manage nearly all aspects of marketing. And a software robot named Albert might be your next coworker. How do you feel about that?
AI represents fears and hopes for many workers in business so I thought it might be a good time to investigate with the goal of discovering the specific skills we’ll need. The capability of AI is so promising (even without the hype) that it makes you sit back and consider what your role will be? At first, it’s intimidating with the thought that perhaps there is no role for us. Yet there will be roles for us.
Yes, it’s a big change for the marketing world and some managers are in denial about it. They’ll accept AI when they’re ready. If you’re managing an agency, brokerage, or you work in digital marketing, you’ll want to be ahead of the curve on this one. The cost efficiencies and productive power of AI could mean the difference between being in business and not.
AI will create a demand for marketers with entirely new education and skill sets
For us, it’s a chance to take a quantum leap ahead of slower, less optimistic competitors. In this next series of posts, I’d like to delve into AI and explore how marketing AI can build success upon success. In fact, with marketing AI, we should expect an entirely new type of digital marketer to arise, free from manual drudgery to explore their best marketing skills and creative powers.
Some Initial Questions for AI Marketing Workers
It’s all about finding the best questions. And here’s some questions regarding what we’ll be doing in future.
how do we use AI to increase social engagement?
how do we improve content recommendations?
how is the AI robot botching email and social communcitions?
how do we align and integrate all digital and offline channels?
how do we automate customer communications?
who will train us to find the right answers to marketing AI problems?
how will we respond after the AI system has moved the customer somewhere through the sales funnel?
who will use the AI software to optimize SEO performance?
how will we repond to the AI system’s content recommendations?
what is the AI system not learning about which content is working well?
how many different marketing tasks can we do well on our own in concert with marketing AI?
when is the best time for the AI system to warn us about performance issues?
how do we help the AI system do real-time customer research?
will we have to get involved in data collection and management?
who will do media planning and strategy?
Agile concepts and AI technology will be fully intertwined, where an increasing percentage of the population work in freelance, consultancy and temporary positions, moving from company to company. There’s no more “career” in the traditional sense, but instead we build a set of skills and move around companies, helping them to enhance and improve core business areas — Rullion.co.uk report.
It seems the AI marketing solution companies lack transparency and educational services for customers. They require businesses to dive in with both feet with payment, with no trial period. That’s a problem, however we can see, as they know we can, that AI is undeniable.
What is happening right now, at an increasing pace, is the application of AI algorithms to all manner of processes that can significantly affect peoples’ lives — at work, at home and as they travel around. Although hype around these technologies is approaching the ‘peak of expectation’ there’s a potential fly in the AI ointment: the workings of many of these algorithms are not open to scrutiny — either because they are the proprietary assets of an organisation or because they are opaque by their very nature — from Inside the Black Box, Understanding AI Decision Making.
Leverage the Testing and Optimization Power of AI
The real matter is how well we use it, with what creativity, innovation, and exploration of best results. And that’s actually what this software is all about. By all means, investigate these AI solutions when you can. It’s time well invested whether you’re like me, creating your next job in AI marketing, or to use to grow your business.
These new artificial intelligence solutionswill help us do things better and allow us to access our highest potential. Just like they did in the factories, currently in medical fields, AI robots will spare us from drudgery in marketing and allow us to focus on what we enjoy, to vastly improve productivity and competence.
We have little choice really — AI is here. We should be innovative, broad-minded and optimistic about how we can improve business and make ourselves indespensable to our employers, or supercharge our own SMB.
Right now, automation is the buzzword, but soon the emphasis will be back on human creativity, innovation, and connectivity. We’re evolving from machine learning and automated tasks to where more personality and a better customer experience happen. The key question is, how will we adapt to AI solutions and add value?
You might have dreamed one day at the office, “wouldn’t it be nice to work with someone smart?” Well hallelujah, your Genie just came through for you. You’ll soon be working with AI marketing software and it won’t give you any backtalk or friction and instead, will come up with improvement ideas all day and night to make you better. And then you’ll be overseeing the process for even better results.
Demandbase conducted a survey that revealed 80% of marketing executives of companies with more than 250 employees believe that AI will revolutionize marketing by 2020 — from Marketo.com
Managers and CEOs who believe Artificial Intelligence as a marketing tool is still a long wayoff and can’t make a difference should reconsider that view. Robots and AI are in common use around the world and have made astonish contributions to product quality and customer service. Now AI is set to force SMB owners and CEOs to reorganize their marketing teams.
Yes, there’s a lot of hype and it’s a little difficult to comprehend. But it’s wise to start learning how to plan for it, integrate it, execute it, and then optimize its performance.
You’ll need to choose the best AI software and then you need to hire your next generation of marketing employees. For those who fear job loss, the AI software will create all sorts of new digital marketing jobs. So you’re likely to be doing what you like, or create your own job. That’s what makes this topic so fascinating.
I’m in the midst of this revolution in marketing myself. Like 50% of the working population, I’m learning how to stay relevant within this trend of automation of marketing and sales. Within a few years, it will force us into to a new role or pursue a new line of business entirely. Do we want to react to these changes or build a strategy to be the best at it?
I’m excited about marketing AI because it offers power to really improve results in PPC, content engagement, testing content, testing SEO, testing conversion stategies and tactics, and optimizing our content strategy as a whole. It removes a lot of waste and friction and replaces it with potential. With AI, traditional marketing skills become redundant, and new skills which I’ve listed below rise to prominence (I’ll expand on them soon, so bookmark this page).
With AI taking the DM dudgery away, we’ll be more creative, learn more and faster, and have more time for planning a multi-targeted, multichannel integrated DM strategy. Things that make a difference.
AI software can test, assess, and continually improve engagement with individual customers while giving us a good look at the overall picture. Everyone in the marketing and creative department will learn and grow because of it.
When the AI tsunami hits, those companies that use marketing AI will have an opportunity to take a huge chunk of marketshare. Without AI, old school employees and small businesses will be culled in the coming years. SMBs in particular need AI to keep pace with enterprise level competitors.
Marketing is undergoing an AI revolution. The marketers surveyed anticipate their AI use will grow more than 50% over the next two years, helping them deliver more targeted campaigns, smarter personalization and higher ROI. (better performance)
Marketers are using AI to break down silos between sales, service and marketing, and bringing customer data together (reduce friction)
Marketers are making significant organizational changes to improve collaboration (reduce friction)
Over the next 2 years, marketers expect strong growth in their use of marketing technology (new opportunity)
Traditional Digital Marketers Will Go Out of Business
One estimate I read suggests $21 trillion dollars of business will transfer away from non AI businesses over to those which do use AI. That will make it the most dramatic business event of the past 60 years.
Will your firm be one of those going-out-of-business firms that sees your surviving clients/customers quickly slide over to your competitors? I hope not. The fact you’re reading this means you’ve seen the early signals and are wondering how you’re going to face this matter of marketing AI successfully. The transition will likely be awkward, with a learning curve.
I don’t have any in-depth successes to share with you just yet, and there aren’t many being told. But it’s early. We’ll hear more victory celebrations such as Harley Davidson and Cosa Bella.
A recent post on the Innovationenterprise.com submitted on Linkedin by Jennifer Von Amerom of Culture&Company recruiters is a case in point. It’s a high level post on AI marketing that’s hard to get your mind wrapped around. The essence of the post was in how AI is already being used successfully in the booming programmatic advertising sector. But it’s moving into all aspects of marketing.
Your Future Coworker Will be an AI Robot
If my next coworker is an AI robot named Albert or Aiden or Eistein, I’m okay with that. In fact, it would be a quantum leap for me. I introduced you to Albert, the versatile and helpful AI software robot from Adgorithms. It can make an ordinary digital marketer look like a powerful genius (they have a new small business edition released now I can tell you about).
What AI marketing solutions do so far, is help create better targeted ads, improve ad timing, and even improve ad creative. We all know conversion on clicked ads is about 1% at best, which means advertisers are wasting most of their ad budgets on paid advertising. That’s billions of dollars on poorly targeted advertising, and digital marketing teams stressed out trying to reduce it.
AI promises to help small business marketers understand the personas, click behavior, and needs of individual consumers and website visitors in more detail. At least some AI software solutions will offer insight. Finding the good transparent ones is something you have to begin doing now.
Career Decisions: Making the Transition to Marketing AI
It’s kind of a no-brainer. That’s why I am making a transition to the AI marketing field already. It seems AI marketing tools will require a whole new set of digital marketing skills, both software and creative abilities. It’s wise to begin the transition now.
As AI uses its own ever-improving learning processes (free of human marketer bias), it’ll assume more of all of the work of marketing, including testing of creative and estimating which generates better results. That means even creative people will have more time to think about creative planning and strategy and discussing it with an AI bot like Albert.
What Does an AI Powered Digital Marketing Specialist Do?
Anything or everything. We and copywriters, graphic designers, videographers, and web designers will work more closely with AI recommendations. Will workers need to be more specialized, or have more generalized skills? It looks like we’ll need both.
One of my biggest frustrations in working in digital marketing is the lack of information about the market and client’s website users. People make a big fuss about analytics but the insight it gives doesn’t really help us. We’re stumbling around in a black box. AI software can test, assess, and continually improve on an individual customer basis while giving us a good look at the overall picture. Everyone in the marketing and creative department will learn and grow because of it.
And the reason for poor customer insight is that no one can test visitor’s interests, personas, and clickthrough behavior, and respond fast enough. Testing in real time, means you can get much more insight from visitors. Human’s can’t do it but AI can. It would be fun to orchestrate all of that.
Testing Out Content Strategies
I’m excited about how AI can provide more detailed insight so I can test out different strategies, or even build excellent content strategies in the first place. New possibilities. With AI, there’s no need to depend on big teams of digital marketers who may resist forwarding the info you need, nor aid you in what you’re doing. That friction or lack of teamwork is a big element of “cultural fit” that many hirers obsess over. But AI might remove it entirely. You might say Albert gets along with everyone and is the ultimate team player.
With AI marketing software, the friction disappears and the strategist suddenly gets direct access to great information fast. Whatever thought, scenario, or supposition I can think of suddenly becomes one I can follow. The potential for campaign improvement and personal professional development is mind-boggling. A veritable dam burst of forward motion.
Old analytics systems will disappear as new ones arise to help us engage visitors and capture their buying intent. No more guessing or asking clients or managers for info and permission. Instead we can help the AI software do some harmless testing and discover the strategic potential of an insight. Clients and managers will be looking to AI marketing specialists for insight about how visitors feel and what they might purchase in the new year.
Yes, AI will be able to learn how customers and website visitors are feeling and what their buying intent is based on their interactive responses, questions they ask, and the content they view. AI systems can process natural language — almost like reading the customer’s mind to understand their underlying intent and issues.
Admittedly, right now, I’m a rank amateur in AI marketing strategy. However, with anything, you’re as good as you want to be. It’s all about attitude. 1 year from now, I’ll be looking back at my newbie status with a smile.
So with AI, you or I won’t need big data expertise or experience. The AI tools themselves will take care of those deep insights and testing power. The software promises to ease time consuming manual work and let us work on higher level strategy. We’ll get excellent results.
It seems to me, that a digital marketing specialist or a content strategist I’ll be able to manage entire campaigns, which the AI software executes and provides feedback on. The purpose of a business is to create a customer, and AI serves that purpose pretty well.
AI Skills Digital Marketers will Need?
Basically, we’ll need to do anything Albert can’t do. In the SMB area, we’ll need to be versatile as our work touches on everything from client communication to creative strategy. We’ll need to weave campaigns together and attend to any aspect that’s ailing.
How is it some people can fascinate, transfix and get others eating out of their hands? It seems they know some tricks of their trade and I”m thinking we can take what they know and do and make it work for us online. There’s one particular star who had that lasting magic.
What made him so good as an entertainer that will make your site industry leading? Let’s discover the secrets.
I don’t think we can doubt aht Hollywood stars have a smart strategy and process to help them connect with emotional impact and engage their audience? They make an impact and deliver compelling content to keep viewers engaged.
Back in Hollywood’s silent film era, they had to work hard to entertain audiences. The medium they used was without sound, just black & white video with subtext. And exactly 100 years ago, audiences of the era were captivated by one unusually creative American actor named Harold Lloyd. He was like Jim Carrey and Arnold Schwarzenegger combined in a fun way. His fans adored him and his movies and antics where no doubt the center of conversations.
Lloyd’s career took off when he moved to Los Angeles and met Hal Roach who was launching his own studio. The persona they created for their films was one of ambition, success seeking and overcoming obstacles which was highly respected in the roaring twenties.
Lloyd’s comedy/action flicks had him climbing brick exteriors of buildings, balancing himself on chairs on the edge of skycrapers, hanging from clock arms many stories up, riding on top of trains. He made viewers feel intense emotions and some of his audience actually fainted in the theater seats. Some of these images are the most enduring images and experiences ever created in Hollywood.
It reminds us that with a little ingenuity, we can create magnificent customer journeys like this too. Today, our web visitors only remember the good stuff. It’s a balancing act of creativity and strategic focus.
Here’s Harold Lloyd on set where he never used safety nets. Pic Courtesy of pinterest.com/errolperez/harold-lloyd/
Lloyd was a hero of cinema and his style epitomized the art of audience engagement. This quick video compilation of clips and amazing stunts gives us an idea of why he was so compelling to moviegoers.
Harold Lloyd was innovative and compelling. His silent movies are still a marvel.
We should ask, how would Harold Lloyd do websites? There would be an entertaining narrative with video, humor, suspense where a hero survives and wins.
Lloyd would definitely enter the element of surprise. He was constantly surprising his audience with unexpected situations and outcomes. This is an area that web designers haven’t explored and could be a key to setting your customer experience apart.
The value of engagement optimization is that it makes everything else look way better than it actually is. So winning at engagement may be the holy grail of digital marketing right now. It’s driving content personalization software and marketing AI — and sewn right into the much desired predictive capabilities which will soon revolutionize digital marketing.
Marketing AI’s ability to predict successful content will likely involve the engagement optimization techniques below.
What’s the Key to Content Engagement?
A post in Fast Company by Helio Fred Garcia, says it’s HiJacking emotions. He advises making emotional impact, targeting a person’s amygdala brain part to make audiences feel first, then make them think what we want. The author advises to: a) make an emotional connection before doing anything else, b) create a framing statement that makes them anticipate what comes next, c) remind them of that statement, and d) remind them again with 3 key points.
“We need audiences to feel first, and then to think.” This is a great point to keep in mind as we launch into engagement strategy for your web and social content. Focus on emotions and eliminate friction.
Good insight, yet engagement requires more than this.
It isn’t easy to engage or persuade people via web content. Flashy video, photos, graphics, or big keyword loaded headlines isn’t enough to keep them long. A well explained UVP or interesting story well told might leave them yawning and bouncing. Forget the platitudes and gimmicks, we need a strategy that works consistently and permanently. Engagement is about continuous involvement.
Data suggests engagement may be about relaxation, surprise, delight, awe, confidence and other positive emotions. Those emotions are a precursor of awakening a belief in them or destroying a frustrating disbelief. And in the process you get yourself positioned in between them and their dreams so you can begin elaborate on your offering.
If We Must Grab Emotions First, then Fascination is our Goal
Do you remember the last time you were fascinated with someone? For me, it was a Vegas circus performer who did so many tricks simultaneously, he managed to crash my idea of what was physically possible.
Then there was the famous, beautiful actress (at right) who sang, danced, performed tricks, acted, and made everyone laugh in a one hour show. She was so talented, and no one knew it.
Was it their talent? Or was it simply that they removed my belief in frustrating limits? Can you remove your customer’s limits?
Key Goal of Engagement Strategy: to create Wow factor, build positive emotion to get them over their hurdles and challenges — to ease their fears, doubts, and stimulate hope.
If you can align sequentially all of these tactics below then your prospects or customers are bound to be transfixed with your offering. After we get the process understood, we can take it to our idea people, designers, videographers, and copywriters to create awesome content pieces. Get ready to spend some money.
Combine these 21 Engagement Tactics to Build Emotion and Keep Visitors Transfixed
1. study your prospect’s background and discover things they’re interested in — know their wish list
2. understand the unique value proposition (solution) visitors are looking for — list all the benefits they’ll receive
3. have a relevant hook that catches their imagination because it relates to an intense need or problem they have (it might be your featured photo, headline, or promise, or an intriguing question)
4. create a hero, villain, and a calamity of technology clashes (they need somoeone to relate to)
5. create emotion through surprise, humor, awe, shock, fun, excitement (stimulate their amygdala).
6. have some amazing facts to throw at them – do some research about product usage and customer satisfaction
7. understand what fun is to them (auto parts buyers like cool cars and car jokes, campers like nice campgrounds)
8. make your content compelling with the values, words and imagery they typically use (check out some forums and ask sales staff about what customers talk about)
9. ask a provocative question that leads to the most pressing reason they need your solution
10. explain your own perspective or reason that you’re discussing the topic (let them know your position)
11. be emotionally present and demonstrate your personal involvement (tell stories, share pics, and get them to visit your social pages if necessary)
12. share a personal experience (how about a discussion with an actual customer?)
13. spell out the payback or what’s in it for them (spell out key benefits in an easy to see list)
14. use a list of points that prove or support your message (top 10 customer problems)
15. use good visuals or videos that illustrate your points and engage their senses
16. tell them you’re going to explain the solution so they know it’s worth their time
17. arrange each of your value points sequentially so they progress naturally and build intent
18. keep it simple using the rule of 3
19. cross reference your points with brands they already trust
20. insert a little bit of humour, drama, suspense, and awe where appropriate to generate a more complex emotional experience
21. Ask them to visualize how they’re feel after purchasing and using it for the first time
There’s no substitute for creative imagination, innovation and time to create great content. Add talented designers, copywriters and videographers to the mix and you really create epic content and be the Harold Lloyd of the Internet era. If you don’t have a great digital marketing consultant to help out, then hire one.
There you have 21 tactics to weave into your engaging content strategy. If you can’t afford expensive content forms, just curate someone elses! I do it all the time. Good luck designing and creating the compelling experience you’ll need to capture your customer’ heart and mind. Practice makes perfect!
Want to see more of Harold Lloyd? You’re really into this engagement thing aren’t you?