June 29, 2010

Recalling those Lou Grubb Chevvy ads

Filed under: Marketing Quick-Tip — admin @ 6:34 pm

Earlier today, an associate and I were reminiscing about those great broadcast advertisements Phoenix auto dealer Lou Grubb did way back when (the Seventies). Called “Take 5,” they always featured a little word sketch delivfered in Lou’s smooth, unobtrusive way. Of course, they always were tied into a little, one-line selling message at the end. How refreshing when compared to the usual car dealer screamer ads. And Lou had a great line: All Chevrolets are created equal .  .  . the difference is the service!”

I hear tell that old master of the soft sell is still alive and kicking into his 90s. Too bad more of us haven’t used your method, Lou. Hats off to you!


June 17, 2010

Be decisive

Filed under: Marketing Quick-Tip — admin @ 4:57 pm

Former baseball great Yogi Berra was “credited” with the following quote: “When you come to a fork in the road, take it!”

As humorous as this may sound on the surface, it’s when you go beneath the surface to face real-world  issues that indecisiveness can become a problem. In terms of marketing, this can range from budgeting to campaign planning and from media selection to brand positioning. The worst thing we can do when it comes time to make such a decision is NOTHING.

The best thing is to take an analytical approach based on marketplace conditions and – perhaps – the current state of your business. If what you are doing is not working, a significant change of direction is indicated.



June 10, 2010

Set your sails for success

Filed under: Marketing Quick-Tip — admin @ 4:49 pm



The other day, during a discussion about the state of the economy, I heard someone say: “We can’t change the direction of the wind, but we can adjust our sails.” The meaning of this is obvious. It’s not the storm that determines our direction; it’s the action we take to move through or, if necessary, around it.


June 8, 2010

Drucker: The two basic functions of business

Filed under: Marketing Quick-Tip — admin @ 12:38 pm


          “Business has two basic functions: Innovation and Marketing.

           These produce results. All the rest are costs.”

                                                                         Peter Drucker




Peter F. Drucker–writer, management consultant and university professor– was born in Vienna, Austria in November 1909 and died in November of 2005.   

He published his first book, The End of Economic Man, in 1939.  He then joined the faculty of New York University’s Graduate Business School as Professor of Management in 1950.  Since 1971, he has been Clarke Professor of Social Science and Management at the Claremont Graduate University in Claremont, California.  The university named its management school after him in 1987.

Drucker has written 35 books in all: 15 books deal with management, including the landmark books The Practice of Management and The Effective Executive; 16 cover society, economics, and politics; 2 are novels; and 1 is a collection of autobiographical essays.  His most recent book, Managing in the Next Society, was published in fall 2002.

He was a regular columnist for The Wall Street Journal from 1975 to 1995 and has contributed essays and articles to numerous publications, including the Harvard Business Review, The Atlantic Monthly, and The Economist.  Throughout his career, he has consulted with dozens of organizations — from the world’s largest corporations to entrepreneurial startups and various government and nonprofit agencies.

Experts in the worlds of business and academia regard Peter Drucker as the founding father of the study of management.

For his accomplishments, Peter Drucker was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George W. Bush on July 9, 2002.   

                                                                         ©  Marketing Partners of AZ 2002





June 3, 2010

A dozen tips for working with a marketing firm

Filed under: Marketing Quick-Tip — admin @ 2:22 pm

A dozen tips for working with a marketing firm



1.    Treat them as insiders; share pertinent information liberally.


2.    Always keep them “in the loop” on seemingly trivial as well as important decisions that may have an effect on sales and your marketing success.


3.    Acquaint them with your corporate culture and key management staff.


4.    When practical, introduce them to other key outsource vendors, such as their HR or CFO counterparts.


5.    Have your staff members and other outsource vendors submit to them for review all internal and external communications that could have a possible impact on your corporate image and sales.


6.    Meet or communicate with them regularly, not merely in last minute or emergency situations.


7.    Neither discard, nor accept their advice, suggestions, copy-writing points or strategic advice without first understanding the rationale involved.


8.    Respect their marketing expertise and heed the advice that results from it when doing so seems inherently warranted.


9.    Read every communication they create carefully before approving it.


10.          Never approve suggestions with which you are not comfortable.


11.          Maintain what amounts to a “partner relationship” conducive to the development of mutual trust, constructive dialog, creative and strategic two-way input, and a level of synergy that promotes effectiveness. 


12.          Have an overall strategic plan, and amend it as may be required.


 © Marketing Partners, Allan Starr 2004


June 2, 2010

AP Stylebook Adds 42 New Guidelines for Social Media

Filed under: Marketing Quick-Tip — admin @ 1:45 pm

The AP Stylebook has released its new social media guidelines, including the official change from “Web site” to “website” (a move first reported back in April) and 41 other definitions, use cases and rules that journalists should follow.

Among the more interesting changes –- at least from a grammar and style standpoint –- are separating out “smart phone” as two words, hyphenating “e-reader,” and allowing fan, friend and follow to be used both as nouns and verbs.

Beyond that, the AP has also defined a number of acronyms that are commonly used in texting and instant messaging. While most of them should be fairly well-known to regular web and mobile phone users (ROFL, BRB and G2G are among the definitions) one actually was new to me: POS.

According to the AP, this stands for “parent over shoulder” (I’ve used POS to refer to something else occasionally, but I digress), and is used by “teens and children to indicate, in an IM conversation, that a parent is approaching.” Elsewhere, other terms making the cut include “trending,” “retweet” and “unfriend” (“defriend” is also acceptable, though the AP concludes it’s less common).

Finally, the AP also offers some basic rules of thumb for how social media should and shouldn’t be used by journalists, with a focus on making sure they continue to confirm sources and information they find on blogs, tweets and other forms of social media.

The full 2010 AP Stylebook, which includes the new social media guidelines, was released today and is available on the AP’s website