Wednesday, March 30, 2005
Dangers of Price Cutting

Anyone who's heard my show or seen me speak knows how I feel about cutting price. Here's yet another example that demonstrates dropping your price just isn't worth it! Looks like this retailer took price cutting a little too far.

Would-be bargain-hunters in London suffered heat exhaustion as a crowd of thousands forced a flagship IKEA superstore to close on opening night. Up to 6,000 people flocked to the opening of the store, which was touting cut-price offers throughout the 24-hour opening, including a leather sofa for £35 ($65) until 3 a.m. The company had expected 2,000 customers. Think any of them will return? Maybe when they're out of the hospital! Ikea Opening

Monday, March 28, 2005
Constructive Controversy

In my "Attract More Business" program I talk about how creating constructive controversy can produce a positive impact on our brand. Well Starbucks has raised some eyebrows over its "The Way I See It" campaign, which prints quotes from thinkers, authors, athletes and entertainers on the side of your morning machiatto. The goal, according to the company, is to foster philosophical debate in its 9,000-plus coffeehouses. The quotes aren't all that inflammatory. Take this one from film critic Roger Ebert: "A movie is not about what it is about. It is about how it is about it."

Saturday, March 26, 2005
The World is Flat!

Listen to this week's audio update
A boat sails out to sea, reaches the horizon, and never returns. Beset with fear, the seaside fishing village assumes the boat fell off the edge of the world. Consequently, for centuries people fished only within sight of shore. Soon belief in a flat world became habit. If we lived in that time might we have not beleived the same thing? When people have worked hard and earned their success, this same belief may result in "safe" thinking and impede learning. The new era requires leaders who are nonstop learners and will eagerly share what they learn creating standards and systems that produce competitive advantage and innovation. Read my latest article, Resistance to Learning

Friday, March 25, 2005
To the Moon Alice!

Here is a real estate company that has truly implemented my Attraction Rule #14: destroy your business. They have abandoned what was a rather cluttered, competitive market and created a cozy little niche... THE MOON!

Now for just $29 per acre you can purchase your own lunar real estate, complete with personalized parchment deed certificate and a satellite photograph of the property. Think this is a scam? To assuage your concerns the advertisement reads, "BEWARE of other Lunar companies selling Moon property. They might seem legitimate but the Lunar Embassy is THE ONLY COMPANY in the world to possess a legal basis and copyright for the sale of Lunar and other extraterrestrial property within the confines of our solar system since the year 1980." Check it out at http://www.lunarlandowner.com/property_info.htm

Thursday, March 24, 2005
Weird is Good!

I am a big proponent of doing just about anything legal to get noticed, but how about being proud of being WEIRD? Here's a billboard which is part of a new public relations campaign aimed at attracting customers to unique, locally owned stores. AMIBA, a national small business alliance is using the effort to help entrepreneurs compete with large retail chains like Wal-Mart, Target, Home Depot and K-Mart-Sears. While mass merchants may win on pricing, hours and advertising, they can't compete with the WEIRDNESS of local independents! I am planning to interview David Bolduc, president of the Independent Business Alliance on one of my upcoming shows.

Listen to me every Sunday, 7am Pacific time on CBS Radio (97.1fm in Los Angeles) or on the web at: http://www.sbanetwork.org/media/media_radio.htm

Wednesday, March 23, 2005
Not Better But Exclusive

Today Hyundai announced plans to become the first automaker to install XM Satellite Radio as standard equipment on all its models. Now for a company like Hyundai that's a powerfully exclusive claim. Just announcing this probably garnered more press for the company than they could afford to buy for the entire year. THINK..... How are you different? What is unique about your company, product or service? What do you do to support that uniqueness? How can you consistently communicate that branding strategy? Read my article on Keeping it Fresh http://www.sbanetwork.org/articles/articles_view.asp?id=144

Wednesday, March 16, 2005
Creating Market Advantage

Is commercial space flight a reality? Starting in 2007, Richard Branson plans to offer trips to space that include 4 minutes of weightlessness for $19,000. Branson understands the importance of being first to market. Virgin Galactic will be ready well in advance of it's competitors, giving them the opportunity to become known as the definitive place to go for space travel. How can we as entrepreneurs milk the first to market advantage? First, we must all remember to listen to our marketplace- we can't sell them something they don't want. Inspire and empower your product development team. Give them the freedom to pursue unique solutions to problems, without distractions. For more tips, read our articles on product development.

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