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Joe Franz

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Archive for October, 2008

The Best Ideas are Obvious…

Thursday, October 30th, 2008

…at least when it comes to Marketing.

I’m reading one of the best books on marketing that I’ve read in a long time.  I read alot of books. (See what’s on my coffee table, in right bar)  I’m always trying to learn from the best.  I want to remain “up to speed” on the latest and greatest marketing strategies.  However, there are some timeless truths in marketing – and this book by Jack Trout, “In Search of the Obvious -The Antidote for Today’s Marketing Mess” – is a must read for anyone serious about marketing.  We’ll be discussing it from time to time over a Cup of Joe.

The book’s name borrows from it, and the first chapter summarizes it — Obvious Adams, The Story of a Successful Businessman — written by Robert R. Udegraff in 1916 is still applicable today.  Like I said, timeless truths – so jump start your reading by getting your FREE COPY here.

A side note: The book was dedicated to Dick Maggiore, President & CEO of Innis Maggiore.  Innis Maggiore (disclosure: my former employer) is the nation’s leading agency in the practice of positioning.  Jack Trout is known as the Father of Positioning.

I’ll leave you with this quote from the book, “Unfortunately, most advertising people look for the creative, not the obvious.  For them, the obvious is too simple and not clever enough.  The old guard — Leo Burnett, David Ogilvy, and Bill Bernbach — understood this.  The new guard, whomever they are, don’t.”

Timeless Truths have a certain ring to them.  You know it when you read it.  Read on.

Need an Idea?

Friday, October 24th, 2008

I’m conducting an experiment…well sort of.  Need an idea?

Here’s what I want you to do.  The next time you are stuck and need an idea – email me as much information as you have “surrounding” the idea.  In other words, what information do you have that will give me some perspective?  Ideas need context.  Ideas aren’t developed in a vacuum.  Often the best ideas are developed over time and with plenty of input from others.  Why not put my ideation theme to the test?
So, next time you need an idea – a fresh perspective on something – grab yourself a Cup of Joe.

Well, I’m waiting…

Share your thoughts with the world, leave a comment here

Or, visit my contact page and send me your thoughts privately.  I’ll be in touch.

Marketing: Coffee Talk Quotes

Sunday, October 12th, 2008

Coffee Talk…

Next to doing the right thing, the most important thing is to let people know you are doing the right thing. – John D. Rockefeller

You must have mindshare before you can have marketshare. – Christopher M. Knight

Authentic marketing is not the art of selling what you make but knowing what to make. It is the art of identifying and understanding customer needs and creating solutions that deliver satisfaction to the customers, profits to the producers and benefits for the stakeholders.
- Philip Kotler

…and the conversation that goes with it. Thoughts?

Web 2.0 – Going Back to School

Sunday, October 5th, 2008

Are you familiar with many of these logos?

This doesn’t have to be overwhelming…ever consider going back to school?

Leadership is about learning. Some of the best leaders I know, in business, at church, and throughout the non-profit sector have created a lifetime habit of learning. They read books and blogs, listen to podcasts, attend conferences, participate in professional discussion groups, & more. They are active learners.

For over a year now I’ve been actively learning about web 2.0. Not by taking any official evening classes at a local university, but rather by spending hours in self-guided exploration and the testing of the proverbial social media waters. Perhaps you’re also interested in this recent tidal wave of web interactivity. In web 1.0 you surfed the web, got information, and sent email. If you choose to engage in web 2.0, you might be doing things like: connecting with friends on Facebook, Uploading Photos & Videos to share, publishing your thoughts on a blog, using Skype like a video phone to talk with someone over seas for Free!, following your friends daily activity on a site like Twitter, and even utilizing your mobile phone to keep up with all of this.

In the last 9 months I’ve intentionally established accounts on sites like Facebook, Flickr,, Digg, LinkedIn, and others with the sole intent being, “to see what the big deal is” and “to see if there was enough value in this web 2.0 technology to warrant my time and participation” My answer – absolutely! -  web 2.0 is here to stay and there is huge value in participating. There’s nothing like checking it out for yourself though.

So, come on in, the water is warm and there’s a lifeguard on duty. If you’re interested in learning how social media can enhance your personal and business relationships, why not give it the old college try? Choose a site, set up your User ID and Password and dive in. Be sure to drop me a line and let me know how it’s going from time to time.  Maybe start your own blog.  Share you thoughts about web 2.0 here.