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Keeping the Small Business Saturday Momentum Going December 2, 2013

Posted by Jack Macholl in Sales, Uncategorized.
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It was good to see many people making cash registers ring on Small Business Saturday. Merchants in my little corner of the world set up window and street displays, going all out to make shoppers feel welcome in their stores.

We’re now in the midst of all the Cyber Monday clamor, but I’m hopeful the momentum will continue and small business owners who put so much at stake to be there for us realize the benefit of our patronage in spite of the media barrage by the big box players.

Please share your local small business story…Image

 

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Small Business Saturday November 26, 2013

Posted by Jack Macholl in Marketing, Sales, Uncategorized.
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The barrage of media advertising is in full-tilt, some of the TV spots are already worn out and it’s not even Thanksgiving.

Amidst all the clutter it’s time to consider shopping at a small, locally-owned business this holiday season. On Saturday businesses around the globe will be seeking to have their voices heard when Small Business Saturday provides a momentary opportunity to stand out.

I’ll be doing some shopping in my Chicago neighborhood, how about you?Image

Small Business Saturday November 24, 2012

Posted by Jack Macholl in Brand building, Brand personality, Communications, Corporate Social Responsibility, Marketing, Sales, Uncategorized.
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After participating in the Edison Park Turkey Trot here in my Chicago neighborhood, a woman handed me a flyer for her brand new start-up business Fair Trade Gifts (6700 N. Northwest Hwy. Chicago, IL 60631).

She was one of many people with booths hawking merchandise, handing out cards and flyers. What made this lady stand out was her “elevator pitch.” In just a few well chosen words she described the fair labor and sustainable practices her goods are made within. Likely no marketing budget, no Search Engine Optimization or PR campaign- a start-up using old-school techniques to capture a few seconds of your attention.

This entrepreneur represents what President Obama calls “Main Street America.” She is opening a small business in what was an abandoned coffee shop that crashed along with many other small businesses back in 2010.

The bombardment and overkill of Black Friday, Cyber Monday, etc. is upon us. It might be time to step back, stop by the local merchant, hear their story and help some people trying to live their dream around the corner.

Forget the lists-just focus January 1, 2012

Posted by Jack Macholl in Corporate Social Responsibility, Freedom, Referral marketing, Uncategorized, Veterans.
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The past few days I’ve read numerous Twitter posts and some blog articles about the “top 5 or top 12” things you need to do for success in the New Year. Although these are informative I feel that real progress or “success” in 2012 will come from focus. I’m not even talking about a formal written plan, for me it will be about self-discipline and remaining focused on the things that will move my personal and business lives forward with a lean toward balance (the thing virtually all humans struggle with today).

If it helps here are some of the things on my agenda :

  • Balance– pressure often comes from within prioritizing work/personal tasks, dividing up the day in segments is what I plan to try. Working in some exercise, music, pleasure reading and family time is on the radar.
  • Doing the Work– scheduling  client assignments, meetings, writing tasks, phone calls, blog posts and other small business owner tasks even on days when I don’t feel like it.
  • Helping– waiting for the corporate hand puppets in D.C. or  the State government level to help make this world a better place is a fantasy. The elderly, developmentally challenged and veterans are largely disenfranchised and that needs to change. These are amongst the causes I plan to help in 2012.
  • Tuning negativity out– this includes much of the election year lunacy, divisiveness , lies and mud-slinging. I’ll tune in enough to be informed and then it’s off. This includes main stream news, “gloom and doom” market reports and pundits. People who want to moan and sap energy, the voicemail goes on; period. Sanity will come from interacting  with positive people that want to make a difference. Other diversions from the madness will include Sirius XM radio, my iPod and portable HD radio (a Christmas gift which is really nice).

Small business people have been hurt by Wall Street, State, County and local level governing bodies-they are clueless and don’t give a damn about you or your future. It’s time to build our own networks and move things ahead with self-reliance and old-fashioned grit.  Networking, referrals and opportunities through involvement are the key to success from my point of view.

Focus and self-help begins in 3,2,1…

Marketing Communication Objectives October 6, 2011

Posted by Jack Macholl in Brand building, Branding, Marketing, Marketing Planning.
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After a presentation I gave the other day a few folks stopped by and asked me to expand on a couple of thoughts regarding the marketing planning process.  Since we’re all overloaded these days, a little review never hurts.

It’s important to remember that objectives are measurable and are really designed to make people accountable for results. To be brief, marketing communication objectives typically solve the following :

  1. Driving “action” or traffic to a physical location or website
  2. Promoting product or service trial
  3. Establishing general awareness of a business or non-profit group
  4. Establishing or regaining trust
Once you have that element of the plan established you are then on to the Communication Strategy portion of the plan that’s worthy of a post in and of itself.
Hopefully you found this helpful. Please feel free to share with colleagues  or people in your networking groups as a helpful refresher.
Enjoy the day.
Jack

At the cross roads...