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2007

I wonder what would happen if…

people always went to the lowest bidder. I wonder this, because it seems that people are doing this more than they used to. Might just be nervousness over the economy. But we have experienced a lot of people saying, “we’d rather work with you, but we went with the lower price.” And we are dealing a lot more with current clients saying, “I want to do this initiative, but you’ll have to come down on the price.” Not sure what is going on.Of course, when you’re talking about commodities, price is the issue. Why pay more for a pound of…

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Life imitates art.

We have a tradition of sending friends, clients, and others Christmas gifts of coffee and original art. One year it was linocuts. Another year it was potato prints. A couple years ago we sent “art kits” and let our client create art for a competition. Well, not to tip our hand or anything, but this year we invited our friend Carl Blair over to oversee our creation of some original works. Everybody worked on the process that resulted in a bunch of cool art. Of course the Carl’s demonstration pieces were the best. He actually gave us one, which may…

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Just to be contrarian.

I don’t remember it, but I am told that I was born on the coldest day of 1958 in Martins Ferry, Ohio. Maybe that began to shape my attitude about all things winter. I am not a big fan of “Walking in a Winter Wonderland.” I’m more about “Hibernating in a Dark Winter Cave,” and “Wake Me When it’s Over.” It should come as no surprise, then, that Christmas is not my favorite holiday. To paraphrase Dr. Seuss, “I dislike Christmas, the whole Christmas season, and since you asked, I’ll give you the reason.”As I was discovering, as a young…

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What we believe.

Seth came into Anne’s office today and told her we should be more up front about our faith. I don’t know about that. I certainly wouldn’t want to be accused of using my relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ to get more or better business. On the other hand, it’s not something we should be hiding, since it is such an important part of who we are. If it matters to you, Anne and I are part of a New Testament assembly. This is a group of Christians who meet simply unto the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, attempting…

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A picture is worth…well, you get the picture.

Ran into our old friend George Lee today at Two Chefs. George is a top-shelf photographer, famous for using light to make really pretty things look breathtaking, and making less pretty things (and people) look really good. He is a master craftsman. Running into George started me thinking about the value of a photograph. Lately, it’s become trendy to save money by using stock photography. In fact, we’ve done it some ourselves. Stock is getting pretty good now days. But a stop-dead-in-your-tracks visual image can be very valuable to a brand. What would Marlboro be if it weren’t for those…

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Spiders.

To those of us who are not web savvy, it’s a little creepy. As I understand it, search engines have these virtual spiders (robots) that crawl all over the Internet, making exhaustive notes of everything they find. Then, when you do a GOOGLE search for something, say, “Stately plump Buck Mulligan,” the spiders remember all the places they encountered “Stately plump Buck Mulligan” and post a list of all the pages where they found it in their explorations. There are secret formulas by which they decide the order in which they list the pages. In your site, you have code,…

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Money and Time.

In Permission Marketing, Seth Godin makes the point that in the future, as options become more plentiful, time will be the common currency, not money. There will be so many options, at such low prices, that people will be able to afford to buy whatever they want, but they will not be able to afford the time to consider all the options. This is one of the basic principles of permission marketing. Well, along those lines, I’ve been thinking about time as currency.There is a principle in the Bible, where your treasure is, that is where your heart is. So,…

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The discipline of market leaders.

The Discipline of Market Leaders. A little while ago I came across this business classic on a bookshelf, while looking for something else. It was a huge hit back in the 1990s. Then it kind of disappeared, probably because it isn’t a “seven steps to category dominance” kind of book. You actually have to read it. And then, to get anything out of it, you actually have to think about it. But it was a pretty smart book. The premise was that all category leaders master one of three disciplines: operational excellence, product (development) leadership, or customer intimacy. Makes sense.…

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Full-service relationship vs. project relationship.

We’ve been having a lot of conversations lately about the benefits of a full service agency relationship vs. the advantage of a project relationship. There are two ways of looking at this: from the agency perspective and from the client perspective. In general, any client large enough to have an advertising budget and to benefit from annual planning does better with a full-service relationship. It’s a matter of scale, synergy, and consistency. You have too many initiatives to be paying a premium for each one (as you do when you treat them as projects). You gain momentum in the relationship,…

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Science and God?

Tomorrow, two high-octane smart guys are going to debate whether or not God exists. It will be quite an event. John Lenox, author, serious math genius, Oxford professor and Biblical Christian will go toe-to-toe with Richard Dawkins, author, serious physicist, Oxford professor, and spokesman for the “new atheism.” Should be a great debate. Fun to listen to. Fun to watch. Fun to talk about later. I’ll be rooting for Lenox, of course. But in the end, the debate will not make one bit of difference. God doesn’t need a math genius to prove He exists. Nor can a physics dude…

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4 Hurdles for community bank marketers. READ BLOG >

8 Bank Marketing Priorities—in order. READ BLOG >

“What does the data say? READ BLOG >