Marketing & Communication

Marketing is a modern form of business communication, but its roots are as old as humans. People are tribal. It probably started with survival, but tribes evolved to become communities of people that share similar values and beliefs. To show they are part of the same tribe, they used characteristic colors and ornaments and engaged in specific behaviors or rituals. By doing this, they communicated to others their beliefs and what made them different.They used verbal and visual language along … Read More

0
100% up-front

You should always ask for 100% up-front payment and offer 100% money-back guarantee for your work. This is especially important for project-based services. It avoids scope creep, tightens the schedule, and you will have peace of mind if the client goes dark. But there is more to it. When a client refuses to pay up-front, it’s either a trust issue or the client doesn’t have the budget. Both are huge red flags. If the budget isn’t there… that’s a no-brainer, … Read More

0
Ideation

“The purpose of thinking is to let the ideas die instead of us dying.” ― Alfred North Whitehead This is perfectly true only if you don’t account for people’s tendency to overdo it. A lot of us – myself included – tend to overthink, transforming idea-slaughtering into some kind of odd hobby. While eliminating stupid ideas is fine, and playing with thoughts can be a good mental exercise, it becomes counterproductive if it hinders you in bringing ideas to life. … Read More

0
The Plan

Business is not your life.It’s just a piece of your life, a good way to generate value in your lifetime. You won’t be able to make a good plan for your business if it’s not aligned with the plan of your life. But you can’t plan your life, if you don’t know what you want to accomplish by the end of your life. If you don’t know what you want to accomplish by the end of your life, you can’t … Read More

0
Before You Start

Waiting for something special to happen before you start? The perfect plan, the perfect setup, the perfect logo, the perfect constellation alignment? Are you constantly delaying actions, procrastinating, finding other priorities?  How many things did you put on your “need this to start” list? Are you telling yourself nice stories to support all the above? Congratulations! You are one of the billions who do the same every day. And you are going towards a life full of regrets, depression and … Read More

0
Platforms

Do you have something valuable to say but your message doesn’t get through? It’s because most people are already in some conversation, therefore you won’t get their attention. Imagine yourself in the middle of a huge crowd. A sea of people talking, arguing, some even screaming. Do you want to be heard? Do you want people to pay attention to your valuable message? Do you want your message to spread? Then, you better start talking. At first, no-one will listen. … Read More

0
Safe to click

A way to change the world As a hole, people are curious creatures but at individual level you will often encounter a lot of resistance towards the new. Take links for example: you usually don’t click them if you’re not clear about where they’ll take you. It’s the reason why most web designers will stick to the rules and place your logo in the top left corner, will have the menu top right and will populate it in a classic … Read More

0
Choice

Working towards a potential future, one that we imagine, is what separates us from animals. Animals react – we are able to anticipate and act with intention. It is this super-power that enabled our evolution, and it is the only power that can save us from destroying our future. Be health conscious now and you will have a long healthy life.Grow a brand now and you will develop a future-proof business.Protect the environment now to save the planet for our children. It’s not easy. We … Read More

0
Design Doctor

If you find yourself telling your doctor what to do, you either need to change the doctor or your attitude. So, if you know more than your doctor about the illness, you should find a more specialized one or become one yourself. If you’re not that good but still trying to tell others what to do, like micromanaging everyone, you are again in need of a specialist. A psychotherapist or a good coach. Keep that example in mind the next time you as a … Read More

0
Design your business

Think of design as intention.  ‘By design’ we say when something was purposefully crafted and didn’t happen by chance. It’s a way to predict results and to mitigate risks. We design the world around us to be able to control it and generate purpose. Design is intention. It has purpose. So should the looks and feels of your business be. Designing the customer touchpoints of your business should never be left to chance. How you show up is a statement! So is … Read More

0
Future-Proof Business

Teaching the principles of Future-Proof Businesses in the middle of a global pandemic is like describing the most delicious, decadent chocolate cake recipe to drooling hunger strikers. But the timing isn’t really wrong – I’d bet you are paying attention now. More than ever, actually. Because if your business is in lockdown, almost dead, craving for the tiniest crumb… of revenue,  you probably have abundant time for self-reflection and for finding out what you could have done better and how to avoid it … Read More

0
Positioning Fetish

Stating “The client is always right” is like volunteering for slavery. It’s diminishing. If that’s your fetish you should visit another kind of site. My fetish is to help YOU be the dominator in your business. It is a positioning problem. It shows that you desperately chase your clients and that you rely on luck to close a deal. It tells how rare prospects find you attractive, or proves that you are just a commodity. That there are many like you, … Read More

0
The voice

So many of you speculate about how to become successful yet fail to fiddle the right questions.I see it all the time. What microphone to use, how often to post or finding the best hashtags seem to be the main concerns. That’s “putting the cart before horse” definition! Marketing and gadgets are not responsible for success. You are. Your voice is. It’s the loud and clear voice you use to talk about the subjects that excite you. It’s about sharing … Read More

0
A simple rule

Long time ago, as a kid I promised myself to never be late. It’s a very simple rule that everyone could and should apply without exception. Basic rules like this can be very powerful. In fact, everything we know is based on a simple set of rules that evolved and formed a complex universe. Here is how it applied in my case: The basic rule was to never be late. NEVER! That meant being well organized and planning in advance. That meant … Read More

0
Positioning against stress

How do you make decisions? And how can positioning fight stress? We are wired to make decisions by comparing stuff. It’s how our brain works. Comparing details and finding differences is what we constantly do, sometimes without even noticing. But you will notice tension and stress rising if you fail to find something that will help you make up your mind. Similarly, finding yourself in front of too many choices, is confusing and stressful. Mainly because, if nothing stands out, you’ll … Read More

0
Setting price expectations

If you find yourself in a very competitive market, without setting yourself apart from others, you will rather sooner than later find that your only leverage is to compete on price. That is fine if you do it on purpose. But here is how I find most of my clients. Margins are low to start with. That is a self-regulating mechanism in a crowded niche. It’s normal. To counter the small margins, you have to sell more items. And how do … Read More

0
Why do startups fail

“Eight of out 10 businesses fail within the first 18 months” was the myth spread by Forbes in 2013. Don’t let this journalistic marble scare you. It’s not that bad. Jet, the real numbers still show you have to do your homework. So lets start right now: Half of new businesses fail during the first five years, of which 30% in the first two years, … seem to be the accepted rough numbers across multiple institutions and media. For me, that is … Read More

0
The expert position

You want to be respected?You own the business but don’t feel like your own boss?You want to be The One in your industry? Position yourself as an expert! This is good advice for life in general, but I find it important for business in particular and critical for service providers. As a result, you won’t be pushed around or micromanaged and your recommendations won’t be questioned. You also won’t have to pitch because they will turn to you asking for help, … Read More

0
Competition audit

You can’t ignore competition. It has the power to destroy or boost your business, depending on how well you understand its position in your market. The way to start understanding it, regardless if you are a startup or a seasoned entrepreneur, is through an audit.  The competition audit is one of the best tools to help you assess your business and the environment in which you operate. Whether you do it yourself or bring in an expert, here is what … Read More

0
Employee or self-employed?

Are you happily employed? You better skip this post then. I’m about to argue against employment. Let’s say you have some average job and you go to work every day. The entrepreneur, your boss, will have to sell your work for more. There is no other way. He/she will have to pay you as little as possible and sell it for as much as possible. Clearly, the entrepreneur has to pay for a lot of stuff, like rent, materials, marketing, … Read More

0
Communication principles

Communication is vital, jet so many misunderstand and misuse it with regularity.Here are some arguments to raise your awareness:  Without communication, we wouldn’t be.  Society was built through communication and every relationship is a communication game. We communicate with ourselves and our organs communicate to each other. So are our cells. Even microbial invasions depend on communication.   Disrupting communication is an efficient way to destroy almost anything.  Being able to communicate better than others is how you gain leverage.  Communication is … Read More

0
Short-term vs. long-term business

There are essentially two ways of doing business: short term and long term.Most don’t think about this. I bet there are in the short-term game. Capitalizing on opportunities isn’t entirely wrong. Jet, it’s a good way to fail in the long run if you are not aware of its finite life cycle. Take trends, for example. You could earn a pretty penny out of today’s trend, but be aware, the opposite might be preferred next year. If your organization is not built … Read More

0
The Grinch

Merry Christmas everyone!I’m having a great time this morning being the brand advisor of The Grinch himself 🙂 First thing I notice, is that being the Grinch isn’t the worst thing. Being unknown is far worse.And having Santa as a rival is also a good thing: it’s just one. Believe it or not, there are a lot of people who don’t like Christmas. There are plenty of reasons for that. Take religion, for example. And then there are the folks who … Read More

0
Year review

We’re about to complete another year and maybe you feel like writing a review. It’s not the trend that should drive your action, but the need to evaluate your progress. How do you feel about the past year? How did you change? What did you learn? Here is my guideline: If I’m looking back at my one-year-younger version, and I’m not ashamed, then, I didn’t learn enough. I heard this a few years ago and it stuck with me. It became … Read More

0
Branding vs Brand Design

It’s funny how people confuse the two so let’s clear it up quickly. Brand design is about designing a brand. It’s not design used to create brand elements. It’s the architecture of a brand and it happens in the planning phase. A good sample of that is when building a personal brand that sprouts other brands. Elon Musk and his Tesla, SpaceX, SolarCity, Neuralink, etc. brands is a good example.I’ll write more on this under “Planning for my Brand” Design … Read More

0
Positioning for Value Based Pricing is THE key to success and prosperity

Value based pricing is by far the most discussed and most interesting pricing method out there. It’s also the best. In theory, it could be applied to almost any pricing situation. Depending on your business, value based pricing can be a game changer, however, you need to be aware of its limitations. There are two main ways to understand value pricing. The more classical one, is usually applied to products and productized services that only have some differences when compared to … Read More

0
Convenience

Convenience is one of the biggest driving forces in decision-making. We try to cut corners every day. We give up our privacy, just to be able to buy with one click. Some even prefer stomach surgery to dieting. We would do anything if it would spare us some effort. Most people can’t fight this kind of laziness, it’s part of evolution. Nature needs to be efficient and preserve energy whenever possible. As a result, we are on a shortcut hunt all the … Read More

0
Lucky plans

If you don’t plan your life, others will. Acquiring skills can be a good plan for your life. At least if you also have a good plan on how to use them. Maybe you are lucky and don’t need a plan. With a bit of luck, a set of good skills will get you a job.A job is not your plan. It’s how you contribute to someone else’s plan. If you’re lucky, they included you in their plans: a job you don’t hate, … Read More

0
Freelancer vs Entrepreneur – a Definition

There is a lot of confusion around the two terms and a lot of people use them wrongly. What is a Freelancer? Originally the word Freelancer described a “medieval mercenary warrior” or “free-lance” who’s lance was not sworn to a lord or master. Are you free and carry a lance? You are a freelancer. And don’t worry, other weapons will do, as long as you know how to use them. Today we mostly refer to professionals who are self-employed and … Read More

0
Original Ideas

Do you feel like a fraud for not having original ideas? Are you censoring yourself because of that? Do you call it a writer’s block? Coming up with original ideas, ideas that no-one before has articulated, is really, really hard. Someone said it before, someone has written about it, someone thought about it before you. Good luck beating Socrates on original ideas. People share inspiration for as long as we have been a species, so it’s getting harder every day … Read More

0