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the power of marketing
The Power of Marketing

Our clients understand the power of good marketing. However, there are many businesses that either don’t see the value in good marketing, don’t know how to market themselves, or they think they do, and fail.

Understanding the basic idea that people are looking for a personal connection, and that appealing to a specific target market is key to success – and will lead to high returns.

Don’t just take it from me. We think this story is a perfect example of what targeted marketing can do.

In 1998 Burger King announced the Left-Handed Whopper as an April Fools Day prank.

A full-page ad was taken out in USA Today announcing the Left-Handed Whopper (LHW) for the 32 million Americans who predominantly use their left hand. The ad assured people that it used the exact same ingredients as a traditional whopper, but they were all rotated 180 degrees.

Amazingly enough, this marketing stunt worked – and thousands of gullible customers walked into Burger King requesting a LHW. Later on, BK released a press release a statement having to clear up the confusion. They even reported that many people were aksing at the counter, in all seriousness, if they indeed had the “right handed version”, and not the new “left handed” one.

That is right. A clear April Fools Day prank, marketed towards people with Left Handedness, drove huge sales to the point where BK needed to clear up the confusion so they could relieve the congestion of so many customers.

Something else to take away from this story: People can be really, really stupid.

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Chamber Board – Explanation by Ryan

So – I’m sitting here preparing the Ballots for the Rockton Chamber of Commerce 2014 Board of Directors Election. Allow me a moment to go on a rant.

There is an interestingly low amount of names on this ballot. Out of the 9 seats up for election this year, there are only 4 people seeking election. I am not sure why there is such a shortage of engaged interest in the Chamber Board of Director seats. However, I do know there seems to be a misunderstanding of what it means to be on the Chamber Board. Let me clear that up for you, at least as I see it.

The Chamber of Commerce is a collection of area businesses and individuals that strive to foster an integrated business and community network that enhances the quality of economic and residential life in Rockton and our neighboring community partners.

To make this happen there are many operation duties, and legal responsibilities that must be met. The Board of Directors is charged with these duties. The Board makes decisions, on behalf of its members, which it feels is in the best interest of achieving its mission. As a member of the Board, I am simply a representative for my fellow members, as it relates to these issues.

Although I am on the Board, and will be running for Vice President in 2014, knowing full well that expectations exist, I would imagine the same expectations would apply to all members of the chamber. My place on the board means little more than I represent the other members regarding operational matters. The Board is not a collection of volunteers, it is a collection of people who represent a larger pool of business members.  We have no more responsibility to volunteer for Chamber events than any other Chamber Member. We are all in this together, we cannot do it without each other. 

Let me make it more clear for you:

  • I am not on the Board to further my own agenda
  • I am not on the Board to add to my resume
  • I am not on the Board to become a guinea pig for volunteer hours
  • I am not on the Board because I have nothing better to do
  • I am not on the Board to take time away from my family
  • I am not on the Board because it brings me new clients for RyCOM
  • am on the Board because I want a hands on effect on the achievement of our collective mission.

If you like the direction of your Chamber; If you do not believe that the Chamber is doing what it can/should; If you think the Chamber could do better; If you want to play a larger part in the future of your community…I challenge you to place yourself on the Ballot, allow the members to decide if they want you to represent them at the table.

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How Does Your Business Stay Creative?

RyCOM has a tag line that states “Creativity without the ego”.  Therefore, clients need to be assured they are getting the creativity they deserve, without all the extra pride, stubbornness and ego that is typical in other creative types.  Not that all people in the design industry are egotistical, but lets be honest…there are a lot of people that claim to be creative, and many are not that easy to do business with.

That’s were the problem is.  To remain relevant and keep your business booming, you need to stay innovative.  You need to keep your company on the creative edge.  Creative marketing and business strategies are crucial to your success.  Its unfortunate how many businesses miss this point.  Most business owners think one of 3 ways:

  • I am creative, and can do it myself
  • I don’t want to deal with an unprofessional creative type
  • I can’t afford to pay for professional creative services

I deal with a lot of different people, on a lot of different projects.  One of the major hurdles I face is convincing companies that what they are doing isn’t getting them anywhere. They haven’t met their obligation to innovation, progressive policy, and creativity.  Their problem isn’t passion – they have plenty.  Their problem is 2 fold – lack of creativity and/or lack of ability to develop it.

So what then shall they do?  Should a small company, struggling to find a way to expand, pay 10s of thousands of dollars in fees to a marketing firm?  Should they hire a marketing manager to do it all in house?  First and foremost you should understand what “creativity” is all about.  To safe time, I searched the definition of the word, and came up with something I think is very telling.  Read this definition, found on dictionary.reference.com:

[quote]Creativity: The ability to transcend traditional ideas, rules, patterns, relationships, or the like, and to create meaningful new ideas, forms methods, interpretations, etc.: originality, progressiveness, or imagination [/quote]

So there we have it.  Creativity is all about transcending the normal routine and coming up with something “original” or “imaginative”.  But if I may, allow me to expand on this definition a bit.

Creativity is more than just ideas & imagination.  Creativity is about adaptability, resources, sustainability, risk, process and open minds.  The very concept of creativity isn’t confined to “new ideas”.  To stay creative, and to really understand and utilize creativity as a business practice, is to forget about the end result and focus on the process of getting there.   The process of ideation is followed by what I feel is the most important part, and many times the most fun part, of my job…the implementation phase.

How can this idea meet this goal?  Answering this question is where true creative minds will flourish.

Is it creative to design a square business card?  No – that’s already been done, that’s not original.  Is it creative to develop a website on WordPress   No – that’s already been done, that’s not original.  The creative part is in the implementation and how it helps communicate your overall message.  The payoff isn’t found in the end product, the payoff is found in what the end product does for you.

Chew on that for a little while, and after you have thought about it, contact RyCOM to discuss how we can help your business stay creative.

I leave you with this great video I found:

[vimeo_video height=”320″ autoplay=”no”]http://vimeo.com/24302498[/vimeo_video]

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