Tagged: business development consulting

I recently attended the Mid-Atlantic Marketing Summit at the Gannett headquarters office in Vienna, Virginia.This information-packed day of keynotes, panels, and nonstop networking was worth the price of admission.

If you are seeking answers and major breakthrough ideas, then my takeaways may surprise and disappoint you.I did not discover any new technology breakthroughs.I didn’t meet a plethora of hot customer-centric growth companies, although CustomInk has great potential and will be featured in a future post.

Instead, I left with a series of questions about the future of Marketing in this increasingly complex,technology-addicted business world….

West Legal Education just featured me in a 1-hour podcast: “The New Rules of Client Communication, And What They Mean to Legal Professionals.” Even if you are not an attorney, you will find these key points useful.

Today’s law firms – as well as most professional services firms– are under intense scrutiny and transformation, particularly in how they relate to and market to clients. In the past, most firms were about doing good work and billing by the hour….

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The role of the CMO as we know it is facing unprecedented threats, and possibly extinction. If you are a senior B2B marketing executive or CMO, pay attention to these trends now. Here is why the time is ripe to reframe your role within your organization:

I just returned from a magnificent conference in Miami with one of my mentors, Alan Weiss. Every year he invites members from his 450+ person Million Dollar Consulting community to a prestigious location for two days. We discuss the state of the consulting industry, expand our thinking on our practice potential, sharpen our saws, and commiserate on our respective businesses. His business wisdom and prognostications are worth the price of admission.

Pearlstone retreat

It's that time again. The pied pipers of business performance beckon us to create new goals, forge new alliances, attract new customers, and hire great people.Unfortunately, we carry too many of our old habits, routines, and tools into the new year. How can we ensure that our new ideas and plans are not tainted by the old ones?

Some B2B companies are finally awakening from a 2 year hibernation period and pursuing top line growth again. Will you be one of them? If yes, don’t ignore these five trends as you finalize your 2011 growth and marketing plans.

A recent article in U.S. News & World Report disclosed that in 2010, airlines have generated $2.1B in additional passenger revenues through clever, and often egregious pricing strategies. If they had asked their customers for ways to make travel memorable again, would they have selected this strategy to grow revenues?

The "pay to breathe, walk or eat" pricing approach is rapidly eclipsing customer service in the airline industry, and customers like me are furious. Their nickel and dime strategy are earning them billions: Extra baggage fees comprised $600M in additional revenues and flight changes comprised another $900M.

StarCite_R-highres StarCite, a B2B technology company serving the travel industry, has charted a different course to fuel growth. I recently met with Greg Dukat, their CEO. He outlined a customer-centric growth strategy that challenges the airlines' approach, and will surely outlive it.

Ten Rules for Modern Mastermind Groups

What is a mastermind group, and why should you care? They may just be the secret weapon to help you outpace your competitors and weather these stormy economic seas.

In the 1930’s, wealth expert and author Napoleon Hill defined a mastermind group as “the coordination of knowledge and effort of two or more people, who work toward a definite purpose, in the spirit of harmony.” Well before he authored Think and Grow Rich, Ben Franklin introduced a similar model.

In 1728, at the ripe young age of 21, Franklin created a club of mutual improvement called a junto (pronounced “hoon-toe”). Franklin was struggling to grow his printing business, and knew he could not do it alone. The junto, which comprised seasoned tradesmen, a bartender, and an astrologer, gave him the boost he needed to thrive. As a side benefit, this group surreptitiously shaped public opinion.

Benjamin Franklin Junto 

Whatever you prefer to call these special societies, you will notice they have withstood the test of time, and have created fortunes for thousands, if not millions. Today, you can find juntos in Paris, London, New York, and parts between.

Chip Conley and his investors were forced to make some tough decisions.

Several months ago, Conley, the CEO of Joie de Vivre Hotels in San Francisco, California, witnessed competing hotels facing potential foreclosure. According to the Wall Street Journal, “there is about $5.6 billion in securitized mortgages tied to hotels coming due this year and next…27.8% cover properties now estimated to be worth less than their mortgage balances.” (source: Trepp LLC’s Foresight Analytics). Billions of dollars of mortgages are coming due in the coming years. Analysts are forecasting that the hotel industry will not regain its full strength until 2013.

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Photo courtesy of Chip Conley 

Last September, BendBroadband CEO Amy Tykeson and her team made a bold move. In the midst of servicing one of the most economically challenged markets in the United States — Central Oregon — Tykeson and her team "em-barked" on a re-branding strategy.

Nearly a year has passed. Today, they boast the premier local IT service provider spot, and have preserved their profits in a price-conscious, pit bull industry.

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