Clairvoyance

One of my favorite words and ideas, because no one has it, yet when someone is successful enough it almost seems they do.

So you don’t quite that level of ability, how can you make it seem like you do?

Goals, Planning, and Execution

What do I want, How do I get that, and Making it Happen

Every monstrously successful entrepreneur set goals and made plans to get there Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, Mark Cuban, and any other of the host of examples that would fit all will preach the importance of these values. 

Some of the core values I try to incorporate into my life to help with achieving my goals are;

1. Confidence is key
If you are not convinced in your ability to reach your goals how do you expect to meet them, do you expect anyone else to buy in if you can’t sell it to yourself. Confidence coupled with ability is a combination that makes you a force to be reckoned with.

2. Never Sell a Product, Sell Yourself
Marketing isn’t just about a relatively meaningless product, it’s about your confidence, enthusiasm and ability, if people are enamored by your strengths they will trust and want to buy into whatever you are selling, if you’re really good they won’t want, because you created the need.

3. Build Relationships and Business Will Come
This is especially important in person to person sales, every once in awhile you get the sale because you’re in the right place at the right time, and sometimes your prices may be the selling point, but more often than not people have a product, service, or vendor they already use and are happy with. So how do you get the business? By building a relationship, becoming a consistent presence, letting these people know what you and your company are all about, as you gain familiarity and trust your chance for the sale increase dramatically.

4. Rejection Happens, Can You Handle It?
When you’re on the road driving from one sales call to another, expect it, not nearly every sales pitch will end in a paycheck immediately. Some of the no answers may really test you, but sales is a numbers game too, and when you get the big one, it’ll all be worth it, so never let a no discourage you.

5. If It Was That Easy, Everyone Would Be Doing It
You can’t get discouraged when it gets hard, business is a lot like natural selection, the weak will be weeded out, are you strong enough to make it?

6. Study and Learn From Other Successful People
There are many people who have gone down a similar path, and many of them have very similar qualities, learning those and incorporating yours with them can be a very eye opening experience

These are just a few as I will continue delving deeper in later articles, but the message of this is to encourage embracing your own, what is a core value of yours? What separates you? What will make you successful? These are questions you will pose and answer yourself and you progress, analyze, and decide the path you take.

Clairvoyance

One of my favorite words and ideas, because no one has it, yet when someone is successful enough it almost seems they do.

So you don’t quite that level of ability, how can you make it seem like you do?

Goals, Planning, and Execution

What do I want, How do I get that, and Making it Happen

Every monstrously successful entrepreneur set goals and made plans to get there Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, Mark Cuban, and any other of the host of examples that would fit all will preach the importance of these values.

Some of the core values I try to incorporate into my life to help with achieving my goals are;

1. Confidence is key
If you are not convinced in your ability to reach your goals how do you expect to meet them, do you expect anyone else to buy in if you can’t sell it to yourself. Confidence coupled with ability is a combination that makes you a force to be reckoned with.

2. Never Sell a Product, Sell Yourself
Marketing isn’t just about a relatively meaningless product, it’s about your confidence, enthusiasm and ability, if people are enamored by your strengths they will trust and want to buy into whatever you are selling, if you’re really good they won’t want, because you created the need.

3. Build Relationships and Business Will Come
This is especially important in person to person sales, every once in awhile you get the sale because you’re in the right place at the right time, and sometimes your prices may be the selling point, but more often than not people have a product, service, or vendor they already use and are happy with. So how do you get the business? By building a relationship, becoming a consistent presence, letting these people know what you and your company are all about, as you gain familiarity and trust your chance for the sale increase dramatically.

4. Rejection Happens, Can You Handle It?
When you’re on the road driving from one sales call to another, expect it, not nearly every sales pitch will end in a paycheck immediately. Some of the no answers may really test you, but sales is a numbers game too, and when you get the big one, it’ll all be worth it, so never let a no discourage you.

5. If It Was That Easy, Everyone Would Be Doing It
You can’t get discouraged when it gets hard, business is a lot like natural selection, the weak will be weeded out, are you strong enough to make it?

6. Study and Learn From Other Successful People
There are many people who have gone down a similar path, and many of them have very similar qualities, learning those and incorporating yours with them can be a very eye opening experience

These are just a few as I will continue delving deeper in later articles, but the message of this is to encourage embracing your own, what is a core value of yours? What separates you? What will make you successful? These are questions you will pose and answer yourself and you progress, analyze, and decide the path you take.

Popular Business Acronyms and How You Can Use Them

Part 1- SWOT (Strengths Weaknesses Opportunities Threats)

SWOT is a popular acronym used for strategic planning, allowing you to analyze your business at a glance, or go into as much detail as you want. I personally like to use it for the ease of starting it, it only takes one sheet of paper as I start, and expand progressively depending on the situation. This is an essential piece of information for anyone participating in business, whether it be management, marketing, design, or even accounting.

Strengths- characteristics of the business or product that give some sort of an advantage over the others

Weaknesses- characteristics of the business or product that place it at a disadvantage over competition

Opportunities- chances to expand into other avenues or products using yours as a segue

Threats- external elements within the environment that can be an issue for the business or product


We’ll use Gillette as an example for how to apply SWOT
Strengths- Very strong brand recognition

Weaknesses- Their pricing is high, probably partially due to the large amount of money they spend on advertising

Opportunities- they saw skin care and shaving cream as an opportunity to expand their brand which has proven successful

Threats- They have two types of competition, Schick makes basically the same product, and electric razors, which cost more up front but new blades aren’t ever needed, thus making them cheaper in the long term.
Also, if the material cost of stainless went up it would effect them greatly.

Mark Wahlburg Doesn’t Drink Schlitz?

While seeing Contraband starring Mark Wahlburg this past weekend with my girlfriend, product placement quickly became the topic of my blog for today. While the movie itself was great, it was very apparent that this movie was a rolling ad for Schlitz, a Milwaukee based brewery. It was featured heavily in multiple scenes as an integral part rather than just glasses or any beer available. The characters meet and drink Schlitz at a bar with Schlitz banners, Schlitz neons, and tough guys drinking Schlitz, all with the label at an easily readable angle.

Product Placement is an advertising technique used by companies to subtly promote their products through non traditional advertising techniques, film and television most notably, but other media outlets aren’t excluded, the idea is to have your product visually available or used in these mediums.

In 1983 Sylvester Stallone made an agreement to use or place Brown and Williamson products in 5 of his five of films, B&W is a large tobacco company (now merged with RJ Reynolds) he was paid $500,000 with $250,000 up front and 50k after each movie was released. Seem’s like a lot of money just to have Rambo smoke a cigarette right? This method is everywhere, sometimes it’s more subtle, other times, so in your face it’s laughable, but why?

Simply because it works, the guys at big tobacco knew every guy thought Stallone was the man in the 80’s, so what better hands for their product to be in, Sly is cool, so if I smoke, I can be more like him right? People take note of the things they see, especially if it’s attached to something or someone they already like.
I happen to like Marc Wahlburg, so Schlitz was hoping it could sell to me, I’m not switching brands based off an action movie personally, but that’s also because I recognized immediately the intent of the placement (I also think there are many way better beers available). Mostly men see action films, so for a product who’s buyers numbers are predominantly male, it is an ideal scenario to advertise.

Some other places you may have noticed this type of marketing would be;

Those Coca Cola glasses on American Idol? Product Placement
Subway Sandwiches on Pawn Stars? Product Placement
Audi in the Transporter Movies? Product Placement
The new Camaro in Transformers? Product Placement
Schlitz in the new Movie Contraband? Product Placement

While some people find this kind of marketing unethical, some may not even notice it, I personally believe if done well it’s a great thing, and If done badly, it’s bordering on insulting to my intelligence.

Thanks for reading, I think I’ll go have myself a cool refreshing Boulevard Pilsner…

Oh wait, was that product placement?

Yes, but was it effective? I guess that depends on whether you have one and if anyone at Boulevard sees this to throw me a case as payment.

Till Next Time,
Casey Schaaf

My Rant For the Day

One name is synonymous with root beer, A&W, but in my eyes they could do a much better job marketing it.

The packaging advertises the fact that it’s made with aged vanilla, is this something that is supposed to sway me to buy their product? 

"Well I used to drinks Barq’s, but now that I know the vanilla in A&W is aged I can’t go back"

Am I the consumer supposed to be a vanilla connoisseur? Cause I’m not, and I don’t know of any off hand. In a sea of choices for soda/pop, what drives sales is advertisement, and when’s the last time you saw one for A&W? 7up owns the company, yet doesn’t seem to advertise for anything besides it’s flagship soda, and they wonder why Pepsi and Coke make their numbers look like child’s play.

The more sensical marketing ideas for A&W in my eye would be;
-A&W America’s Favorite Rootbeer, much like Budweiser is “The King of Beers”
-A&W Have a Float, Pairing up with an ice cream company to promote together, a tried and true idea playing on the association we already make

Thanks for reading, more up soon!

Casey Schaaf

My Rant For the Day

One name is synonymous with root beer, A&W, but in my eyes they could do a much better job marketing it.

The packaging advertises the fact that it’s made with aged vanilla, is this something that is supposed to sway me to buy their product?

"Well I used to drinks Barq’s, but now that I know the vanilla in A&W is aged I can’t go back"

Am I the consumer supposed to be a vanilla connoisseur? Cause I’m not, and I don’t know of any off hand. In a sea of choices for soda/pop, what drives sales is advertisement, and when’s the last time you saw one for A&W? 7up owns the company, yet doesn’t seem to advertise for anything besides it’s flagship soda, and they wonder why Pepsi and Coke make their numbers look like child’s play.

The more sensical marketing ideas for A&W in my eye would be;
-A&W America’s Favorite Rootbeer, much like Budweiser is “The King of Beers”
-A&W Have a Float, Pairing up with an ice cream company to promote together, a tried and true idea playing on the association we already make

Thanks for reading, more up soon!

Casey Schaaf