Get to the Point!

Feb 4, 2015
Paul Fleet /

Don't spend money on direct-mail advertising unless there is a real deal that you're offering! 

Would you like a straw with your beverage? Is it for flavor or because it seems more sanitary, or because you're just used to it?

Spilt Milk Advertising

Apr 16, 2014

If a slogan is not interruptive, it's likely not to grab the attention of the intended audience. An ad that people relate to is also more useful than one full of abstract concepts.

It’s gotten quite popular in the last few years to select dirty names for start-up businesses. There’s Dirty Dick’s Crab House, Fat Bastard Burrito, but none tops the new burger joint in Chattanooga.

Its name is Sofa - King - Juicy - Burger. If you say the name real fast, it only takes a couple times to figure out the intent of the owner. Despite, that is, the fact that he says there’s a large sofa in the joint.

Justin Willingham / WKNO-FM

When I think about all the inventions and discoveries in my lifetime, it’s mind-boggling. Plastic. Television. Computers. Cell Phones. Jet airplanes. Color photography. 

And that doesn’t scratch the surface.

But I believe the most extraordinary marketing successes have been achieved for two products that are centuries old: drinking water and music.

Redstark /

I was having lunch near my office downtown. The restaurant was almost full, and I was by myself, so I took a seat at the bar.

Even though it's a place I don't go often, I knew most of the other people at the bar, common among us downtowners. And they all knew the bartender, Mark.

Mark was an octopus, serving food and drink customers at the bar, which equaled several tables full of people. Service was good, but secondary, because every one of us was enjoying ourselves. It helped that it was Friday.

Taking Care Of Business

Dec 26, 2012
Christos Georghiou /

An expression I don't hear much any more is, “don't sweat the small stuff,” but I absolutely see demonstrations of it everyday. It means don't worry about the details and concentrate on the “big picture.”

Yet, little matters more than the details, because it is the details that determine the quality of the execution, and most great strategies or plans fail, not because they were bad, but because they were executed poorly. Billions in a retail chain with check-out clerks who don't even look at the customer.

Marketing is my beat. Not education.

Ben Chams /

People say it’s mean to try to fix blame. Say it’s too negative. But if you don’t fix blame, there will be more blame to fix.