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Lance Armstrong Needs a New Tour

January 16, 2013 1 Comment »

Dominic Chan/Wenn via Hollywood.com

Dominic Chan/Wenn via Hollywood.com

If you go to lancearmstrong.com, click on his bio. It tells the story of a man stricken with cancer who overcame that and many other obstacles and won the Tour de France not once, but several times.

Hey Lance, you may want to update your site and take down that part about the Tour de France. In case you didn’t hear, the titles were stripped from you. Also, millions of people are expecting a confession from your interview with Oprah. (Oprah, in a classic teaser move, is playing coy, neither confirming nor denying a confession.)

Why are we so upset about Lance Armstrong? Did Americans even care about the Tour de France before Lance Armstrong? (Not really).  Can you name another Tour de France winner? (Unless you’re a dedicated cyclist, probably not). Why are we wondering if Lance can “come back?” Will the public allow him to come back? (more…)


Taco Bell Speedos and the Engagement Power of Social Media

January 7, 2013 2 Comments »

Thinking Outside the Social Media BunsHaving been on hiatus from social media this weekend, thanks in part to the cold I have that just won’t seem to go away and the hours spent boxing up my apartment belongings in preparation for my move out of Los Angeles, I was sifting through layers and layers of social media news and updates when I found a Mashable.com post titled, “Taco Bell Comes up with Another Epic Social Media Win.” (more…)


Does your company have a social identity crisis?

January 1, 2013 1 Comment »

I feel like I am preaching to the choir here. Your company is on social media. It’s on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and maybe a few other platforms. People read your content, they engage with your content. They comment on your posts, share it with their friends and you keep attracting more and more people that want to hear what you are now gonna say. Your audience is coming up with their own content, they help build your community, it’s a positive flow. (more…)


3 Reasons Why Facebook Pages Are Your Most Valuable Asset

December 21, 2012 3 Comments »

Joining the Facebook Party

What is the value of having a company Facebook page?

This is a question that many small, medium, and large businesses still ask. There is such tremendous value of a company Facebook page that the answer is worthy of a full blog post.

A Facebook page is essentially a website, only it is uniform in appearance with respect to other Facebook pages and it asks users to subscribe to its content. Goals for a Facebook page can be very similar to a website. On its surface a Facebook page serves as an online facade for your product, service, and brand. It’s where your customers come to learn who you are, what you sell, why they should buy from you, and who else buys from you too. Facebook pages create brand awareness, facilitate online purchases, increase visits to store locations, and serve as a source of information. Basically, Facebook pages invite you to the party. (more…)


The Willy Wonka Guide to Marketing: Part 2

December 19, 2012 No Comments »

Screen Shot 2012-12-19 at 8.58.09 AM

As we saw last week in The Willy Wonka Guide to Marketing: Part 1, Willy Wonka is a marketing whiz, even though he’s never worn fleece or set foot at 1 Infinite Loop.  The great chocolatier is back this week with more tips on Marketing, so let’s press on:



How to Keep Your Social Engine from Falling Apart

December 14, 2012 3 Comments »

My car broke down last week.

Right in the middle of the freeway, with cars zooming all around me, my poor pickup truck sitting motionless, in mechanical melancholy and disrepair. I had it towed to a local garage…and 10 hours later and $800 poorer I finally made it back to my apartment, wondering why I hadn’t gone to automotive school because being able to fix my own car would have saved me money, not only this time, but all the times I have been platooned on the side of the road, waiting for AAA and the inevitably high mechanics bill to come. (more…)


The Willy Wonka Guide to Marketing: Part 1

December 12, 2012 1 Comment »

His methods are nontraditional. He doesn’t attend conferences, symposiums, or lectures at universities. He has probably never worn a fleece in his life. Yet Willy Wonka is a successful businessman with slick marketing savvy. (more…)


7 Questions to Answer When Checking out Competitors

December 5, 2012 No Comments »

Last week at the “Pursue Your Passion: Women Entrepreneurship Panel” at Chapman University, one of the participants said, “Don’t think you don’t have competitors. You do.”

As soon as she said this I thought, “Don’t be like Violet Beauregarde!”

Violet Beaureagarde was the gum-chewing champion who didn’t listen to Willy Wonka and chewed his experimental gum and turned into a giant blueberry. (more…)


How to Make Pay Per Click Programs Work

December 3, 2012 5 Comments »

One of the most common misconceptions regarding pay per click campaigns is that they are a sure way to boost your sales. Well, I hate to burst your bubble but this is not really the case at all. Like any other Internet marketing, PPC will only work when it is applied correctly. PPC is a tool; it can secure a place in major search engines such as Google and Yahoo so people can easily see your website but it does not automatically convert them into your customers. (more…)


How to Avoid Content Overconsumption

November 28, 2012 No Comments »

Focus on the content that matters to your brand.

Augustus Gloop was the first winner of a Wonka golden ticket. He lived in a small town in Germany and spent all his time eating chocolate and sweets. At the Wonka factory, he fell in the chocolate river, and then the pipes sucked him in.

With so many free ebooks, free webinars, free powerpoints, free phone calls, free Google Hangouts, free consultations, free 30-day trials, free downloads it’s easy to be like Augustus and consume all these treats. No wonder our inboxes, mailboxes, and voicemails are filled with offers from companies wanting to show their expertise and shower us with free information.

How do you know when to say no? Free information is always good, right?


Free information is a waste of your time when:

  • It’s not relevant to your goals
  • It’s not relevant to your industry
  • It’s an obvious attempt to spam you with more emails, offers, etc.
  • It’s an obvious sales pitch – there is no concrete explanation of what information will be shared and what you will learn.

Gorging on free content takes up too much of your time. When you weed out the free offers that promise you “1000% increase in sales in 2 days!” and explanations that don’t give you a stated learning objective, you’ll find your inbox is much easier to manage and your voicemail isn’t nearly as full with non-customers. You’ll also find you have more time to focus on the things that matter: improving your customer service and increasing your sales.

There are many treats to be found amongst the smorgasbord of free information.

What to look for:

  • Stated learning objective: i.e. “After this webinar you will have the tools to craft an excellent value proposition”
  • A well-known thought-leader who is being interviewed for his/her expert opinions.
  • Emphasis on the learning and information being offered, not on the company and their services

As a consideration for sharing knowledge with you, reputable companies will provide an introductory offer. Note the difference between “spam” and “offer.” Once the company has shared some of their knowledge with you, it’s perfectly acceptable for them to explain their services. Spamming means that after you watch their webinar or download their book, they call and email you nonstop until you buy something or until you ask them (hopefully politely) to stop calling.

Augustus Gloop didn’t know when to stop and fell in the chocolate river. Don’t drown in the river of free information. Learn to recognize the ebooks, webinars, downloads, phone calls, Hangouts etc. that will help you gain knowledge you need to improve your skills, performance, and ultimately increase your revenue.

Lori Johnson (@BPLoriJ) is Customer Experience Manager at Branding Personality. She loves free samples of chocolate, perfume, and hand lotion.