Finding the Right Keywords to Slay

Are you my keyword? In the children’s book Are You My Mother? by P.D. Eastman, a baby bird hatches early while his mother is away from the nest. The plucky little guy doesn’t wait. He sets off to find her. One small […]

How to Write Sales Copy that is Not Salesy

When it comes to how to write sales copy, marketers talk about starting by finding your buyer’s pain point. This refers to the issue, challenge or problem that might be keeping that person awake at night. The question for you is how […]

Be The Cookie: A Marketing and Sales Strategy

What’s been on your plate lately besides turkey? Maybe some cookies? What’s your favorite? A friend of mine loves the digital kind. She says she doesn’t mind being “cookied.” As she explains, when she is looking for a rug online, she loves […]

New Instagram Features

Well, that’s an exaggeration, but your phone can certainly do a lot now that new Instagram features are coming in hot this month. Usually August is sleepy time for marketing news but that’s not stopping Instagram. The app is coming in hot […]

How to Use Reels for Business

New features on Instagram have been coming in hot lately! Reels is one of the latest and you might be wondering how to use it for business. Even though it was introduced by Instagram about six months ago to compete with Tik-Tok’s […]

To Make the Sale, Tell me a Story

When I wrote that headline — “make the sale” — it sounded slightly dirty. In truth, making a sale is anything but. It’s part of many interaction. Even if we aren’t selling, we are promoting something through the art of story telling.Looking […]

Telling Your Story

From new social media apps such as the audio sensation Clubhouse to Twitter’s soon-to-be released Spaces to those “oldies” but goodies such as Instagram, podcasts and newsletters, there is no shortage of places for telling your story, and most importantly, to BE […]

What’s Behind the Best Deal Ever

You probably have one in your car’s glove box. Or, if you are like me, you have a folder of them, filed somewhere for that day when you might need one. The F.B.I. even found some in the junk drawer of a [...]

All It Takes to Stand Out is 1/8″

Do you ever wonder how some people get started in their careers? I love origin stories and Errol Gerson has a great one. Gerson, who, at almost 50 years and counting is the longest-running professor at ArtCenter College of Design, tells how [...]

Unlikely Heroes

Unlikely heroes are only a step away. This little kitchen stepping stool is one of my unlikely heroes. Over the years, its only purpose has been to support me with zero expectations. It was there when I needed to change a light [...]

Why Sunsets Matter: Marketing from the Heart

Sunsets matter. All the time, but there is something especially important about them right now. As the pandemic, elections, fires and unrest keep us mired in the middle of a long metaphoric day that seems to never end, a sunset gives us [...]

Forge Your Future: A Sales and Marketing Workshop for Today’s World

Do you do this too? Lately I've been spending a lot of time staring wistfully at photos of minimalist architecture. These days, I can think of nothing more calming than staring out at the Aegean Sea from the terrace of this Greek [...]

How To Write Better Copy

Everyone writes. Now more than ever. And even though you might not think you are a writer, I'll bet at some point today you had assumed the position of one -- eyes on a screen, hands poised on the keyboard and looking [...]

Brand Therapy Newsletter: How to Get Everything You Want in 2020 … Quietly

Its January. Is your inbox like mine this month? Is it bursting with ways to ... Unlock you power! Take control! Get 2020 vision!  Conquer your year! Make more money! We are just starting the year yet seems like everyone is shouting [...]

Brand Therapy Newsletter #7: Hope is Not a Strategy

Had I heard him right? We were at an industry lunch and the cavernous room was loud so it’s possible. The event professional next to me had said that he told prospective clients who wanted to know more about him to simply […]

Brand Therapy Newsletter #6: Attracting Goodness

Attraction. Support. Community. These three traits are so important for business and yet never really taught in business school. It's why I've put these front and center when creating my Brand Therapy Mastermind Sessions starting later this month. Oddly, I've found these same three traits [...]

Brand Therapy Newsletter #5: Echoes in the Canyon

A successful businessman once told me that when he needs to release some pressure from his week, he steals away to a matinee. With his words ringing in my ears, I bought my ticket to a Wednesday afternoon showing of Echo in the [...]

How to Create Instagram Highlight Covers

Instagram Stories are the fastest growing feature on Instagram and provide a fresh way to reach and interact with your ideal client. Lately I've had several friends who use Instagram Stories lament that they disappear in 24 hours. Actually, there is a [...]

Brand Therapy Newsletter #4: Getting Personal

Getting Personal I met Jean-Pascal Lemire through a DM on Instagram. He was interested in talking to me about getting more exposure in the Los Angeles market. When we met later that week for lunch I learned he had just moved to [...]

Brand Therapy Newsletter #3: A Good Night’s Sleep

What about your business keeps you up at night? This is one of those questions I periodically ask my clients. It helps me find solutions for them that are on target. Staying relevant is an answer I hear often, specifically, how they [...]

Brand Therapy Newsletter #2: I Was Wrong

Lessons from My Lunch with the Past I was standing in a sea of thousands of people holding my lunch tray. Dude, total flashback to high school! Like in high school, I was searching for the best place to sit amid the […]

Brand Therapy Newsletter #1: Takeaways from SMMW

Three Takeaways from Social Media Marketing World I just got back from San Diego and Social Media Marketing World. Conferences like this help me stay on top of the latest trends, concepts and developments in social media and put that information to […]

Influencer Marketing: A Love Story

Influencers are a driving force for brands looking to grow audience and sales through social media. Like any great love story, when the right brand and influencer connect, it’s fireworks. The search for that marriage between advertising and audience has brands doubling […]

Do You Have Lazy Roots? Time for Deep Marketing!

You may not know this, but I’m an accidental gardener. People laugh when I say that because my last name seems to indicate I might have a predilection, but nope – they’re wrong. That didn’t stop me from always having pots of […]

Are You Making the Most of Social Media Marketing?

Well hiya! Hey, we’re friends, right? And friends share secrets. I have a big one that I just can’t keep to myself anymore. *Deep breath* The majority of people I talk to who want to market their business more online, or create […]

Three Ways to Use Instagram Stories

In summer, I like to take advantage of the slower pace to drink my coffee outside in the garden, quit early on Tuesdays to enjoy a leisurely stroll through the farmer’s market, and to learn something new. Is this you too? If […]

How To Build Your Positioning Statement

A positioning statement is not the same thing as a tagline. A tagline is an external statement aimed to attract an intended customer. A positioning statement is internally facing. It is written to define and inform future marketing initiatives for the team. […]

Profile: Jose Ramirez on Personal Branding and Sales

Jose Ramirez is a steady presence at industry events around the country. He can be found both at the meetings, and behind-the-scenes of the many association boards he serves on. I see him equally at events in Los Angeles as I do […]

Trust the Bubble: Why I Like Long-Form Content on Social Media

The scene begins … I’m holding a heavy cabinet while my friend checks the spirit level. “It all begins with the cornerstone cabinet,” he’s says. I nod. My yoga breathing is helping me as he levels the cabinet and drills the screw […]

Great Instagram Story Tellers to Follow

It happened when she turned the camera around. It was just a small thing, but at that moment I realized that we really are connected. All we want to show the best side of ourselves and our world we can in whatever […]

12 Instagram Story Tips

Last week I talked about how and why to use Instagram Stories in a more intentional manner. It’s a growing platform for telling people about your business, taking them behind the scenes of your day or your work, or promoting something specific. […]

How To Use Instagram Stories for Business

Instagram stories is my latest social media crush. I love it for its entertainment factor and for the ability to post something quickly and in the moment. I enjoy seeing what friends start and end the day and everything in between. But […]

Five Offline Marketing Ideas

Here’s an analogy I like to keep in mind as I structure a marketing campaign for a client — each facet of the strategy is its own stream. Alone, they might not be strong, but together, they are a force. As in […]

Marketing Case Study: XO Bloom

I love marketing. I love strategy. Good thing because marketing is all strategy. In the roar of today’s deafening marketplace, you can’t say something just once, or even twice. And never in the same way. Marketing today is a series of actions, […]

Brand Therapy for the Soul

With a nod to the great motivational speaker and authors, Jack Canfield (Chicken Soup for the Soul), I offer up a serving of brand therapy for the marketing lover’s soul today! We start with an amuse bouche — a question immediately followed […]

June: 5 Cool Things to Love This Month

June. The month of the Gemini, symbolized by the twins. But not all duos this month are identical. Consider … summer solstice + June gloom. And the two birthstones of this month … the smoothness of pearls + the flash and rarity […]

Thought Nomads: Wired for Reinvention

Like our ancient ancestors, we are once again nomads. Not geographic nomads, but thought nomads. We keep our hearts and minds on the move, looking for the next thought or feeling that will make us sit up and take notice. To be […]

Brand Therapy: Reigniting Passion

“Inspiration is a magical thing, a productivity multiplier, a motivator. But it won’t wait for you. Inspiration is a now thing. If it grabs you, grab it right back and put it to work.” – The authors of Rework We begin our […]

White Wine and Organic Radishes

Even I — the queen of esoteric, totally non SEO’d headlines — have to admit, that White Wine and Organic Radishes is pretty much out there! But it will all make sense when I explain how two random searches brought two friends […]

Tasty Tips: Building Your Ideal Audience With Instagram

In New Orleans last month to speak at Catersource, I was able to get to the iconic New Orleans institution, Cafe du Monde on my last morning there. It was early and chilly enough to make my eyes water as I walked […]

Marketing Our Passion: Shirtless Moments

How often do we truly see ourselves? I mean, truly see ourselves in a way that moves our soul? It might be difficult and scary, but always, it’s illuminating. And, if we know what to then do with that information, it’s a […]

Marketing Goals 2017: Leading with Heart

We all know what marketing goals are, or at least why we want to create them. Marketing can increase sales, build brand awareness, grow market share, help us launch new products or services, target new customers, enter new markets and … blah, […]

Three Ingredients For Marketing Secret Sauce

Your Marketing Secret Sauce: The Key Ingredient is You The creative passions that drive us are also often what drive people to do business with us. They set us apart and can be an amazing marketing tool when we put them front […]

Building Your Audience on Instagram

“All companies have customers. Lucky companies have fans. But the most fortunate companies have audiences. An audience can be your secret weapon.” — from the NY Times bestseller, Rework When it comes to building your audience — and I don’t mean a […]

Blue Ocean Marketing: A Strategy for All Seasons

In a small, or specialized market, one big question is: How can a business differentiate itself from its competition? One marketing strategy is to head out to sea. The concept of blue water marketing was outlined in the 2005 book “Blue Ocean […]

Instagram: The Power of Three

Before it was ever called content marketing, weaving a compelling narrative was a passion of mine. Everyone loves a good story, and they will tune in to see how it unfolds. Being a photo driven medium, the story we tell on Instagram […]

Story Telling in Marketing: A Case Study

Content marketing is storytelling through one or multiple channels. Like a great story, content marketing gives viewers a glimpse into your world. It educates, informs and entertains. It gives back. It resonates. It leaves the reader wanting more of the story you […]

A Marketing Campaign that Turned the Tables

The message of this marketing campaign was simple — it’s OK to draw on the furniture! In fact, visitors to the AFR booth at the Experiential Marketing Summit in Denver, Colorado, were encouraged to embrace their inner child and get creative on […]

A Bold Marketing Shift at IKEA

It’s always illuminating to see how companies that have built their brand on one look, product or service change direction. For instance, IKEA, known for its strict aesthetic of understated and monochromatic furnishings, has taken a seriously dramatic swing toward color and […]

10 Ways to Optimize Your Showroom Design for Sales

The New Year is a great time to review many things, including your marketing efforts; evaluating not only how well your story is being told, but how well it’s being received across all our marketing channels. For many event professionals, showroom design […]

Eddie Zaratsian: Reading Tea Leaves

Life is nothing if not random. Sometimes it seems that tea leaves might be just as accurate at predicting what our next steps will be as anything or anyone we consult. And yet, when Eddie Zaratsian throws a tea party, not one […]

Marketing: 10 Tips To Telling Your Story Better

Fashion fades, Coco Chanel said. Only style remains the same. That style translates to our brands. As businesses, as people, we all have our own brands. Everything we say, do, wear, eat, and drink goes into marketing our style, turning it into […]

Pitch Perfect: Mastering a Craft

What does it take to master a craft, be it event planning, designing, wine making, painting, or making cakes? I got to thinking about this while at an event at Steinway & Sons, one of the world’s most prominent manufacturers of high-quality […]

Five Truths About Making an Emotional Connection With Your Brand

We respond differently to a VW camper than we do to a Ferrari because one hits us right in our heart, while the other is a more distant, cerebral connection. Emotion is a huge part of making a connection whether through marketing, […]

Three Reasons Why Print Matters

[ezcol_1half] Printed marketing material matters. I know you don’t believe me in this era of digital communication but why print matters has to do with the fact that we are tactile beings. We rely on sight and touch for information; the sensory […]

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