It’s war out there….

It’s war out there…. Many  of you know I live in Key West, Fl. Key West is a tiny microcosm of the world, but it always serves as a really great study and litmus test for what is happening in the “real world”!  I was reading in our little  33 page newspaper The Key West Ciitizen about the new eatery that Joe Walsh, a local businessman wants to open down by our Tourist destination Mallory Square. Any of you that have been here will likely remember Mallory Square as our Mini circus by the sea. At Sunset performers entertain tourists and local artisans show and sell their wares… It’s been a go to destination for many years.. When I came down back in 1982 for the first time it was celebrated as a place where people go to every night to celebrate sunset. Today it is a LOT more commercial, It’s a lot different than it was in ’82… but what’s not? Walsh owns about half a dozen restaurant/bars in town. Some very successful and some less. All of them are well known. For the record, I don’t personally know Joe  – not intentional… we have never crossed paths is all. Joe if ya read this I would love to meet ya and share a libation! So anything I say about him is basically my hallucination, not at all fact… but I would bet they are accurate. Joe Walsh is very likely a hard working guy. He has  a handful of properties that do pretty well, that can’t be an accident it must be due to his management skills and his work ethic. Walsh wants to rehab an old Pizza restaurant and turn it into a 150 seat restaurant RIGHT behind our little circus. I say – Smart Joe! There are thousands of tourists that frequent that location at dinner time every night, seems to me they might be looking for a place to eat… The city commissioners and the city of Key Wests’ residents fear that Joe is gonna build a large “monstrosity” that will impede the flow and feel ofthe location… And that IS what we all should be worried about. As a citizen of Key West, I fell in love years ago with fun and funky Key West and I see the Key West I fell in love with being eroded too. BUT the arguments for not building it that I read about...
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Do you know your Customer Avatar?

Do you know your Customer Avatar? Avatar, What a great movie! I loved it so much I saw it a bunch of times. Great message. But what does it have to do with your Customer? Nothing…  A Customer Avatar is simply a mashup of their ideal Customer. You need to have an Customer Avatar. Every business does but so many fail to have one. On my first meeting with my Clients I try to discover their Customer Avatar. They usually have NEVER thought in this direction before. Oddly when they think of ads, they think of them or their business, not their Customer. Your Customer Avatar is a mixture of your favorite Customers, It’s a hybrid, if you will of their traits. Their age, their likes, their dislikes – And don’t make the mistake of trying to understand what they like and dislike about your business, this is about THEM – The Customer – not you. You need to really undertsnad your ideal Customer, the magazines they read, their political views, the books they read, the places they like to go on vacation, what they dream about, what frightens them, what exhilirates them etc. When we determine that, I write it out in detail and then I create a Customer Avatar. I get a picture of that person, usually off the net, and then give them a name. A real name like Betty, Felicia or George. This lives in their binder and I before I write any copy or create any ads… I read about them. I look at that picture and I dive deep into who they are. I imagine the pain they feel perhaps they are lonely and trying to find a mate, I think of their dreams, maybe they aspire to lose weight, etc. Does this sound like a lot of whoo ha too you? It’s not. It’s one of my secret ninja mind tricks. It’s why my copy and ads sell so well. I understand the Customer AS A PERSON that we are trying to reach. I get into their head. I feel their pain and laugh with them. I really have no idea how anyone can write copy unless they have a process like this… Could you do it too? I think so. It takes a lot of practice. It talkes a lot of time. It means that you don’t just sit down at the keyboard and bang out a sales letter. You need to do the hard work first! (It took me 30 years of...
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SMS Text Marketing… Does It Really Work?

SMS Text Marketing… Does It Really Work? SMS Case Study: In a holiday SMS marketing campaign, McDonalds developed a mass marketing sweepstakes where people could send a text message right from the store and receive a prize. Prizes ranged from “virtual” prizes like pictures with Santa to large cash prizes. In a time period of  5 weeks, more than 1.5 million people were participating. It was considered McDonalds’ most successful advertising campaign. Did SMS work for McDonalds? YEP! They took advantage of a rising phenomenon: SMS – Text Message Marketing. Our world and technology are ever changing… . Years ago we would find out about a new restaurant or business because of something we read in the paper or maybe an ad in the paper. The rise of the internet and the mobile phone industry are not only changing people’s relationships with each other, but they are changing people’s business and consumer relationships. We used to have to plan ahead for our advertising. Now, we can decide at 6 PM that we need more Customers and have them by 6:30! Television, newspaper, magazine, and radio advertising are just not as effective as they used to be. They have to give way to the newest, most effective form of marketing today – Online Advertising. In a world competing for market space, you need to be able to get people’s attention, where they are, not where you wish they were… like the yellow pages! Failing to meet them where they are will only cause you to fall further behind those competitors who are actually implementing strategies that fit today’s shopping and spending habits. How can a business compete and win in today’s market? Well… Imagine being the only person in your industry and area using SMS marketing. Reaching out to your Customers on their Mobile Devices! Now… Imagine being the only one NOT using SMS. Which position would you rather be in? sFrankly SMS text marketing may be one of the best answer. SMS texts are a great way to reach people in a convenient, instantaneous, and personalized way. Coupons, customer loyalty rewards, and customer feedback,  are just a few of the ways in which any company can and should connect with its customers. The fact that people who have signed up to receive your SMS Ads have already shown an interest in your company makes SMS so much more appealing. They have already raised their hand and said… I’m a fan...
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Can You Afford a Mobile-Optimized Website?

Can You Afford a Mobile-Optimized Website? Mobile Websites! Can you afford NOT to have a mobile website? Consumers are using their mobile devices on the go today more than ever. And they make instant decisions about where to spend their money based on how easily they can access needed information from their mobile devices. When it comes to “easy mobile access,” mobile websites are one of the most important pieces of the mobile puzzle. What’s the big difference between a desktop and a mobile device… Size Matters! The image below shows you the New York Times on a 27″ Monitor vs an iPhone… The NY Times site is a challenge on a 27″ monitor, imagine trying to read all that information on a 2″ x 3″ screen! Mobile Websites are designed to fit smaller screens, so users can see the most critical details on your website, such as location, price, and contact information…  all in one glance. Scrolling and navigating traditional pages on a tiny display can quickly lead to frustration, driving your customers away from you and to a more user-friendly option,and we all know that means… no money in your pocket!. Mobile-optimized pages offer extra benefits if well-designed, such as “one-click” features that will help them make a call, find directions, or make a purchase without having to type in a bunch of words. The Cost – As with any marketing plan, there is a cost associated with the development of a quality mobile website. However, this cost must be weighed against the risk of losing patrons simply because they can’t find the data they want quickly enough. As more organizations are turning to web-optimization to ensure a quality customer experience on their main websites, their mobile websites need to be considered too, those mobile websites  that don’t meet consumers’ advanced expectations will sadly be left behind. Although it does cost money to get a mobile website, there are affordable solutions available. For instance, if you simply need a basic mobile site where users can easily find your information, you may be able to get a mobile website for a just a few hundred dollars. However, if you need a more robust mobile website, one  with advanced features and options, you may spend quite a bit more. As with anything… you get what you pay for. It’s easy to say, “Hey, it’s just the mobile site, but we are finding that studies show us that more...
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