Home » Blog

Have you noticed that there are only 2 ways to get things done in this world?

There Are Only 2 Ways To Get Things Done

  1. Do it yourself
    • But you have just 24 hours in a day just like everyone else, it’s hard to leverage your time
  2. Get someone to do it for you
    • You might be asking them to buy something from you
    • You might be asking them for help on something small/big
    • You might be asking them to make a small/big change to their normal behaviour, the way they normally do things

Imagine if you could motivate 10 people to do 10 hours of work for you everyday? That’s 100 hours of productivity every day.

So how do you motivate someone?

Money works. Sometimes.

But I think the biggest motivator is attention.

Could Attention Be The Biggest Motivator?

Attention is the new currency of the world.

Actually, this hasn’t changed from when you were 1 year old.

You craved attention then, you crave attention now.

For you, attention could be:

  • Recognition for a job well done
  • Respect for your skills and knowledge
  • The knowledge that people hold you in high esteem
  • Someone wondering how you are
  • Getting lots of emails from people who need your advice or decision making skill

It’s the same for the people you are trying to motivate to get something done for you.

You have 3 primary ways to make your request:

pleading-duckling1. Email: The Lowest Persuasion Power

  • Most people get lots of email so it’s easy to miss your super important message. Or easy to ignore it and leave it for later. Or easy to say they didn’t get a chance to get around to it
  • Even though some emails can take a lot of effort to write, then they are received they feel cheap
  • You can’t help but wonder if part of the message (or the whole thing) was copy/pasted from emails to other people, or sent in bulk with your name automatically swapped out
  • If you want to get someone to take action via email you have to pack in high value and answer the question “What’s in it for me if I take action on this right now?”

pleading-puppy2. Phone Call: Medium Persuasion Power

  • When you ask for what you want in a phone call, the other person has to make a choice: Yes or No.
  • It’s hard to say no straight away because it sounds rude.
  • And it’s hard to say “I’ll think about it and get back to you”
  • You’ve got their attention while they are on the phone with you so that counts for a lot
  • But there could be a few distractions going on in front of them. You are only providing audio but the human brain crazes the visual so we are open to a myriad of distractions

pleading-otter3. Face-to-Face: Highest Persuasion Power

  • There is something about the 2 of you being in the same place, at the same time, that is special
  • You and they could have been anywhere in the world, but instead you have both chosen to share a few precious moments together one-on-one
  • When another person is across the table from you it is human nature to want to help them with whatever they need

Which Method Will You Choose?

The next time you are about to email someone to ask them for something, wonder to yourself “would a phonecall be more persuasive?”.

And then wonder to yourself “would a face-to-face meeting be even better?”.

Your Thoughts?

Have your say in the comments below.

{ 0 comments }

Wouldn’t it be great if you had an extra hour every day?

What would you do with that extra time?

A few years back I used to get up at 5.30am every morning (even weekends) to read business books for 90 minutes before I started to get ready for work.

I got through 1.5 books a week that way. Here are the summaries of my favourite 81 business books.

But then I had my first kid. And then another. And then another.

kids

And the best I could do was get up at 7am. And even then I was bleary eyed and grumpy.

I’ve only been able to get back into that pattern for brief periods of time. (That sweet spot when all the kids are not sick and none of them walk into our room in the middle of the night).

But I think I might have just cracked the recipe.

Even with 1 sick kid who wakes us up a few times every night this week, my eyes have popped open at 5.00am or 5.30am and I’m feeling good! I’ve been able to start reading business books again with consistency.

It’s been 6 mornings in a row now.

Want to know how I’ve been able to add an extra hour to every morning?

The secret is M&M’s.

m&ms

Yes, those delicious candy coated chocolate treats.

But I don’t mean adding them to my mouth. Removing them.

For about 3 months, every night I’d turn on a movie or a TV show and munch through half a bag.

Every night.

And then, one of those movies that I watched was called “That Sugar Film”.

that-sugar-film

I have a pretty good awareness of the high level of sugar in foods and I eat pretty healthy so I thought I deserved half a packet of M&M’s every night.

(In fact, I ate M&M’s all the way through the first half of the movie).

I didn’t think there was any harm.

But the movie made me wonder if I was actually addicted to M&M’s.

The way to test that is to break the habit, so the next night I didn’t eat any M&M’s.

It was hard! It was all I could think about!

And the next morning I woke happy at 5.30am and started reading a business book.

5.30am

The next day and night the cravings were intense, but I refused to give in to them.

And the next morning, I woke at 5.30am and read some more.

That’s when I started to wonder if abstaining from M&M’s in the evenings was related to me waking up so early and easily.

Now it’s been 6 mornings in a row and I’m convinced.

I think that either the food colouring, or the sugar in the shell or chocolate was sending me on a sugar high and sugar low while I slept!

As my body worked hard to pump insulin around my system all night, I woke up feeling tired still and not knowing why.

No sugar at night, and now my sleep is restoring and rejuvenating my body and mind.

And on 3 of those nights our sick middle child has woken us 2 – 4 times a night, and still I wake at 5.30am feeling good.

Hooray!

So if you’re as addicted to sugar as I am/was, try this experiment: Do without it for 7 days and try to be aware of how you feel.

Check-in with yourself on judging your energy levels in the morning, during the day, and at night.

100-percent-battery

And if breaking your habit works for you like it worked for me, what are you going to do with the extra hour you’ve now got every day?

{ 0 comments }

12 Questions To Help You Organise Your Next Event

September 16, 2015

We live in a digital age. There are more ways to communicate than ever before, but perhaps we are in danger of shallowing out our relationships with people if we rely on digital tools to replace our face-to-face interactions. That’s why I love organising events. Bringing people together in the same room, helping strangers meet each […]

Read the full article →

The 6 Steps in The Creative Process: This will be awesome, This is hard, This is shit, I’m shit, This might be ok, This is awesome!

September 4, 2015

An artist friend of mine Murray Clode told me about the “The Creative Process” this morning at the Breakfast Club that I run. The 6 Steps in The Creative Process This will be awesome This is hard This is shit I’m shit This might be ok! This is awesome! This doesn’t just apply to creating art, […]

Read the full article →

Heard About The NZ Cafe Owners Network?

April 27, 2015

The NZ Cafe Owners network is where cafe owners in a particular city are matched to a cafe owner in a neighbouring city. They call each other once a fortnight (8pm on a Thursday night) to share marketing ideas to grow their businesses. There is no competition because they are in different cities, so they are […]

Read the full article →

Simple Advice For Co-Working Spaces: Have Lunch Together

March 20, 2015

I moved into the Basestation Co-working space mid-January 2015 after being at Studio64 for 2 years. A few weeks into it I got the feeling that something wasn’t quite right. There was something missing, but I couldn’t figure out what it was. It wasn’t until I visited Studio64 during lunchtime and we poked fun at […]

Read the full article →

Want To Make More Money? How To Maximise The Worker, The Seller, The Investor, In All Of Us

February 10, 2015

My 5 year old son asked me about money last night before bed. His basic question was “How do we get more of it?” Good question! We spent a few minutes closely examining a 5 dollar note and I pointed out some of the security features like clear windows, watermarks and micro-printing that make it so […]

Read the full article →

What is Sheldon Nesdale up to in 2015?

February 5, 2015

What am I up to in 2015? Take 3.5 minutes to find out in this short video:  

Read the full article →

Start, Stop, Steal, Stick: What I’ve Learnt From 6 StartUp Weekends

December 4, 2014

Imagine walking into a room on a Friday night with an idea scribbled on a napkin, and walking out at the end of the weekend with a company, a team and even revenue! That’s a typical StartUp Weekend. “Startup Weekend works by delivering the opportunity to learn how to start a business and promoting entrepreneurship […]

Read the full article →

Facebook Basics Workshop (Tauranga): Fri 26th September 1pm – 3pm

September 22, 2014

I’m running a “Facebook Basics Workshop” with Likeable Social Marketing (Dan Necklen). Know a business owner that might need our help? This Facebook workshop is for you if: You need help setting up your Facebook business page You’ve got an existing Facebook business page, but don’t know how to use it effectively You have Facebook […]

Read the full article →

Email Newsletters: 6 Tips To Get Your Automated Emails Opened, Read, And Acted On

September 19, 2014
Thumbnail image for Email Newsletters: 6 Tips To Get Your Automated Emails Opened, Read, And Acted On

Having a list of email address of people who want to hear from you is gold. The secret to effective email newsletters is to mimic a one-to-one email conversation as closely as possible. Any elements that make the recipient suspect that your message is one-to-many will reduce the impact of your message. There are 6 […]

Read the full article →

TEDxAuckland 2014: 18 Hours of Awesomeness

August 18, 2014

I made my annual trip to TEDxAuckland on Saturday, and for the last 2 years I have captured my experience here on MarketingFirst.co.nz, but this time I’ve written my report on the TEDxTauranga website. Read it now: TEDxAuckland 2014: 18 Hours of Awesomeness

Read the full article →

Tauranga City: The First Truly Digital City of New Zealand?

December 9, 2013
Thumbnail image for Tauranga City: The First Truly Digital City of New Zealand?

What does digital mean to you? What does a digital city look and feel like? Do we want this for Tauranga? Why? Is a digital city attractive to work, live and play in? What is the councils role? What is the citizens role? These are some of the questions that a small group of passionate […]

Read the full article →

Marketing Ebooks: All 4 Of My Marketing Ebooks Are Now Free

December 2, 2013

The most important thing for every author is that their work will be read and appreciated. Every sale, every download, every note of appreciation, is exciting and fulfilling. At first I thought writing books was about making money too, but now I realise it isn’t. It’s about spreading ideas, and having an opinion, and being […]

Read the full article →

Advertising: “But What Advertising Methods Will Work For MY Business?”

September 25, 2013
Thumbnail image for Advertising: “But What Advertising Methods Will Work For MY Business?”

You might have read my list of 62 ways to advertise, but are these 2 questions on your mind right now?: Am I wasting money on the advertising I’m doing now? Which advertising methods will work for my business? The advice you get when you ask this question will change depending on the incentives of […]

Read the full article →

Google Calendar: How To Duplicate An Appointment

September 5, 2013
Thumbnail image for Google Calendar: How To Duplicate An Appointment

I’ve been using Google Calendar for many years, but I only recently found this function, and now I couldn’t live without it. How to duplicate an appointment in Google Calendar Go into the details of the appointment you want to copy Along the top buttons there is a dropdown labelled “More Actions” Choose “Duplicate Event” from […]

Read the full article →

Google Calendar: How To Silently Rip An Appointment From An Invited Guests Calendar

September 4, 2013
Thumbnail image for Google Calendar: How To Silently Rip An Appointment From An Invited Guests Calendar

I’m a huge fan of Google Calendar. I even switched my reluctant wife over to it rather than her diary book, and now she loves it too. If you use Google Calendar and you use it to invite people to appointments and events, you need to occasionally cancel appointments, right? Well, you’ll know that you […]

Read the full article →

My Transition From Employee To Home Based Business To Co-Working

August 12, 2013

This is a short video on how I made the transition from employee, to home based business, to leading a co-working space in central Tauranga, New Zealand. Watch this video on Vimeo Thanks to Jono from EmergeFilm for all his work on this story (we work together at Studio64 co-working space).

Read the full article →

TEDx Auckland 2013: 17 Hours of Awesomeness

August 5, 2013

TEDxAuckland ran from 10am to 5.30pm on 3 Aug 2013: 7.5 hours of awesomeness. But my day started at 6am because I drove up from Tauranga for it, and got back home at 11pm. I’m still counting the 8.5 hours of waiting and driving because those were all awesome too. I was either talking to […]

Read the full article →

Only Prospects In Pain Will Buy: 6 Questions To Ask To Uncover Your Prospects Pain

July 17, 2013
Thumbnail image for Only Prospects In Pain Will Buy: 6 Questions To Ask To Uncover Your Prospects Pain

Did you know that only a prospect in pain will buy a solution from you? It’s true. The more pain they feel, the higher the price they will pay, and the more they crave your solution if you can show them that you understand their pain. If you have a warehouse full of widgets to […]

Read the full article →

Your New Website Says “Under Construction” or “Coming Soon”? 3 Reasons That’s A Disaster

May 22, 2013
Thumbnail image for Your New Website Says “Under Construction” or “Coming Soon”? 3 Reasons That’s A Disaster

I love purchasing a new website address, don’t you? (A website address is also known as a “domain name”, or a “url”) I’ve purchased about 60 website addresses over the last few years. For clients, friends, and for myself. I get the same rush of adrenaline every time I do it. It’s so exciting because it’s much […]

Read the full article →

9 Companies, 90 Days, Worth $9 Million

May 20, 2013

Last week I went down to Wellington to the Lightning Labs demo day. Lightning Labs is New Zealands first (and only) business accelerator. For a bit of background, read my article about Lighting Labs that I wrote a couple of weeks ago. 90 days ago these 9 companies were worth zip, nada, nothing. And now […]

Read the full article →

How to Create Start Up Companies Worth A Million Dollars Each In Just 90 Days

May 3, 2013

Did you meet Laura Rietel (and Nick Churchouse from Lightning Labs) on Thursday 2 May 2013? If not, you missed a great night! Laura shared her experience with Business Accelerators. I loved her presentation style. No slides. Just a few notes, lots of stories, and lots of questions. Casual and friendly, it felt less like a seminar […]

Read the full article →

Worried Someone Will Steal Your Awesome Idea? 7 Possible Reactions When You Share Your Idea

May 1, 2013
Thumbnail image for Worried Someone Will Steal Your Awesome Idea? 7 Possible Reactions When You Share Your Idea

New ideas are exciting! Sometimes great ideas wake you in the middle of the night (and at the time you are sure you’ll remember them so you don’t bother writing them down… oops). Sometimes great ideas happen to you when you are alone (like in the shower, or in the car), and it’s so annoying […]

Read the full article →

9 Questions To Get You Started When You’ve Got An Idea For A StartUp Business

April 16, 2013
Thumbnail image for 9 Questions To Get You Started When You’ve Got An Idea For A StartUp Business

Heard of “a business plan”? It’s how you plan your business, right? Well, the bad news is that “business plans never survive first contact with customers” – Steve Blank. This means that you can plan all you like, but real customers with real money in their pockets will buy what they want to, not what […]

Read the full article →

“Tauranga University Enrolls First 99 Students, 4 Years Ahead Of Schedule” – Proposed Headline for BOP Times, Fri 26 July 2013

April 15, 2013

Dear universe, I would like the following headline appear in the Bay of Plenty Times on Fri 26 July 2013: “Tauranga University Enrolls First 99 Students, 4 Years Ahead Of Schedule”. Impossible? No. Not impossible. I’m going to tell you how. You can probably think of at least 5 reasons why a university here would be great […]

Read the full article →

The Future of “Work”: Are You A Cog In a Machine Or A Nanobot In A Swarm?

April 4, 2013

I had the honour of spending 60 seconds with John Key this morning. I was 1 of 10 young professionals invited to tell him about what we’re up to here in Tauranga, the city I love. Here’s my 60 second speech: Hi, I’m Sheldon Nesdale and I’m helping to build a eco-system of entrepreneurship and […]

Read the full article →

Testimonials: Tips About How You Can Get Powerful Testimonials For Your Website

March 27, 2013
Thumbnail image for Testimonials: Tips About How You Can Get Powerful Testimonials For Your Website

Firstly, Sean D’Souza in his book “The Brain Audit”, has this to say about Testimonials: — Why We Are All Sceptical About Testimonials Testimonials are like resumes; they’re not entirely believable.  Which is why most customers tend to view testimonials sceptically. Even if we don’t say it out loud, we view testimonials as one-sided. It’s the […]

Read the full article →

A Collection of 7 Bob Clarkson Thoughts

March 4, 2013
Thumbnail image for A Collection of 7 Bob Clarkson Thoughts

Bob Clarkson (72 years old) invited me into his home on the weekend. For 90 minutes he told me his story. I can summarise it in 3 words: He loves building. We talked about many of his building projects. Past (those still standing today), Present (what he’s working on right now), and Future (those that […]

Read the full article →

What To Say When You Are Asked “What’s Your Hourly Rate?”

February 28, 2013
Thumbnail image for What To Say When You Are Asked “What’s Your Hourly Rate?”

Do you get asked the question “What’s Your Hourly Rate?” by potential clients? How do you respond? Do you just throw in one of these number into your response?: $10/hour $20/hour $50/hour $100/hour $200/hour $500/hour Potential clients often respond in one of these ways: “That’s too cheap!” “ooo, that’s too expensive and way out of my […]

Read the full article →

Should I Renew My Yellow Pages Listing For My Small Business?

February 18, 2013
Thumbnail image for Should I Renew My Yellow Pages Listing For My Small Business?

Is that a questions you are struggling with right now? Have you been advertising in the Yellow Pages hardcopy and/or online for years but now you’re thinking of cancelling? Do you suspect you are wasting your money, but you are shit-scared that your business will completely dry up if you stop paying them thousands of dollars […]

Read the full article →

Is Your Blog Stale? How Not Updating Your Blog Can Damage Your Business

February 11, 2013
Thumbnail image for Is Your Blog Stale? How Not Updating Your Blog Can Damage Your Business

“When I look at your blog I can almost see the tumbleweed rolling through…” Are visitors to your website thinking that? If you have a blog section on your website, at some point you thought it was a good idea to get one. You might call it your “news section” or your “article section”, they […]

Read the full article →

Job Hunting? Clever, But Simple Marketing Advice For Job Hunters

February 8, 2013

Looking for a new job? Does your job hunting plan look like this? Trawl through job ads on Seek, TradeMe Jobs and a couple of other sites Find jobs that look interesting and throw your CV at them Wait And wait some more And apply for some more (on the assumption that it takes 100 applications […]

Read the full article →

5 Co-Working Spaces in Auckland, The 6 Lessons I Learnt

January 29, 2013

Last week I visited all 5 of the co-working spaces in Auckland: Movers & Shakers, Auckland Central, Dion Bettjeman Loft503, Auckland Central, Matt Knight  Generator, Auckland Central, Ryan Wilson The Kitchen, Grey Lynn, Auckland, Murray Sheard Bizdojo, Auckland Central, Nick Shewring I am honoured that every single one of the founders/owners made time for me and my questions. I […]

Read the full article →

How Many Co-working Spaces in Hamilton?

January 25, 2013

Good news for you if you can answer “YES!” to these 3 questions: Are you are freelancer in Hamilton? Do you work from a home office? Do you want to move into a co-working space in Hamilton city? Up until now you would have had no option but to start your own space (which has […]

Read the full article →

Will You Join the 2013 Marketing Bootcamp in Tauranga?

January 8, 2013

The 2013 Marketing Bootcamp is a series of 12 workshops (one per month) which will improve both you and your business. Is the “2013 Marketing Bootcamp” for you? YES! If you own a Tauranga-based Small Business and you are either a solo operator, a husband-and-wife team or have a business partner YES! If last year went […]

Read the full article →

Selling services? Find out how to set your prices, and if you should put them on your website

December 17, 2012

Are you selling services? Are you quoting your hourly rate or using “value based pricing”? Should you put these prices on your website or not? Find out the answer to these questions with this short 2.5 minute discussion with Sheldon Nesdale from www.MarketingFirst.co.nz and Dan Necklen from www.Likeable.co.nz

Read the full article →

15 Reasons Why Co-Working In The City Centre Is Awesome

December 13, 2012
Thumbnail image for 15 Reasons Why Co-Working In The City Centre Is Awesome

This article is for those of you who are working from home right now, and it’s purpose is to show you what you could gain from moving out of home into a co-working space in the city centre. This is part 2 of 2. Read part one: 5 Reasons Why Working From Home Sucks I worked […]

Read the full article →

5 Reasons Why Working From Home Sucks

December 13, 2012
Thumbnail image for 5 Reasons Why Working From Home Sucks

This article is for those of you who are working from home right now, and it’s purpose is to show you what you could gain from moving out of home into a co-working space in the city centre. This is part 1 of 2. Read part two: 15 Reasons Why Co-Working In The City Centre Is […]

Read the full article →

In the retail business? Waiting for the world to change back to the way it was?

November 13, 2012

Can you answer yes to any of these questions?: Are you in the retail business? Are you waiting for the good-old-days to come back in terms of the economy and retail sales? Do you want the world to change back to the way it was before the recession? If so, I have good news. The […]

Read the full article →

Own A Cafe, Restaurant, Bar But Have No Website? Get One Before 2013

November 5, 2012

If you don’t have a website for your Cafe, Restaurant or Bar, then take some comfort in the fact that you are not alone. Did you know that only about one third (to one half) of New Zealand’s Cafe’s, Restaurant’s and Bar’s have a website? The 5 Most Common Objections I Hear From Owners: When […]

Read the full article →

How to Turn Your Junk To Gold – 7 Simple Tips for Selling on TradeMe

November 1, 2012

This is an update on my original article in Jul 2009 Ahh TradeMe, we all love it (And the recent copy-cat auction sites are hilarious. They have no chance!) Don’t you think it’s amazing how much gold people will pay for your junk? Do you want to squeeze every last dollar out of each TradeMe […]

Read the full article →

Interview with Cheryl Reynolds, CEO of SODA Inc, Hamilton’s Business Incubator and Accelerator

October 31, 2012

I’m on a mission to establish a Business Incubator in Tauranga next year. Part 1 of this mission is to learn from people who have already succeeded. So last week I spent an amazing, inspiring, uplifting 3 hours with Cheryl Reynolds the CEO of SODA Inc and Rachel Wark, the Communications Manager (thanks for making […]

Read the full article →

Business Facebook Pages: 6 Simple Tips For Your Business Page on Facebook

October 29, 2012

Are you just about to set up a Business Page on Facebook? Or have you set one up already but it’s just not generating business for you? Then this short list of tips will save you some time and help you generate some results. #1. Don’t sign up for a new Facebook Personal Profile just for […]

Read the full article →

Customer Survey Package

Thumbnail image for Customer Survey Package October 29, 2012

I’m about to show you that with your next customer survey, it is possible to generate satisfaction rather than just measure satisfaction. Let’s consider the customer’s perspective first. Do any of the following 3 scenario’s sound familiar? 1. Imagine you have just started dinner and the phone rings… You pick up and it’s someone asking you to […]

Read the full article →

Market Research Package

Thumbnail image for Market Research Package October 26, 2012

Do you have your eye on a target market and want to find out what those customers want? Do you want to find out more about the competition (if any) in that space? Do you want to evaluate the risk and determine your chance of success? Then consider this Market Research Package. Q: “Is this […]

Read the full article →

Tauranga 2013: A Business Incubator, A Business Accelerator, And 3 Co-Working Spaces

October 15, 2012

Have I shared with you my plan for 2013? I want to establish a business incubator/accelerator/co-working space here in Tauranga. Tauranga’s first co-working space starts this week in the Priority One building, hooray! I’ll be doing my best to help them succeed. But that is only the beginning. Imagine there was one business incubator, one […]

Read the full article →

Have A Great Idea For A Start-Up Company But Worried Someone Will Steal It?

October 12, 2012

On Monday you’ll see my notes on the book by Eric Ries called “The Lean Startup: How Constant Innovation Creates Radically Successful Businesses”. Amaaaaazing book. But I couldn’t wait until then to share this with you. There is one section in there that talks about how many of us have ideas that we think are […]

Read the full article →

Quickguide to LinkedIn Part 2: How To Milk LinkedIn – The 8 Most Important Cows

October 11, 2012

(Missed part 1? Read it first) Firstly, it’s important to note that “100% completion” is your starting point. That’s right, spend a few hours and just get all the basics done and out of the way until you score 100% completion. Then come back here and read the rest of this article. The 8 Most Important Components […]

Read the full article →

Quickguide to LinkedIn Part 1: What Types of People Are Looking At Your LinkedIn Profile Today?

October 10, 2012

Think you should be doing more with your LinkedIn profile? First let’s consider your audience. Who’s actually going to look at your profile? The 5 types of people looking at your LinkedIn profile today: 1. People you meet who are curious about you You might hunt them down first, or they might find you first. […]

Read the full article →

TEDx Auckland 2012: 16 Hours of Awesomeness

October 9, 2012

TEDx Auckland ran from 10am to 5.30pm on 6 Oct 2012: 7.5 hours of awesomeness. But my day started at 6am because I drove up from Tauranga for it, and got back home at 10pm. I’m still counting the 8.5 hours of waiting and driving because those were all awesome too. I was either talking […]

Read the full article →

“I Think It’s Too Long, Can You Make It Shorter?” A Phrase I Dread

October 4, 2012

I do quite a bit of copywriting: email proposals email newsletters sales pages on websites blog articles direct response letters and the occasional fax (I’m joking about the fax, it’s not the nineties anymore) The pieces of work I create are as long as they need to be and often include all of the following components: Headline: […]

Read the full article →

5 Questions For Small Business Owners to Think About Today

August 8, 2012

Compete against yourself Pretend there is a brand new competitor opening next door to you, what product and service bundles should he start selling? To who? Don’t wait for this to happen, create those bundles and target those customers yourself today Why you? What are the top 3 reasons customers should choose you? Put those […]

Read the full article →

Small Business Website: Do It Yourself For Only $141.50

August 7, 2012

If you don’t have a website for your small business, then take some comfort in the fact that you are not alone. Did you know that only about one third (to one half) of New Zealand businesses have a website? The 5 Most Common Objections I Hear From Owners: When asked why they don’t have a website, […]

Read the full article →

Email Marketing: 7 Reasons Why It’s Cool, 3 Reasons It Sucks, 7 Tips To Make It Work

August 6, 2012

Why are you attracted to the idea of “email marketing”? 7 Reasons Why Email Marketing Seems Cool Because sending emails is cheap (or free). It’s a cheap way to keep in contact with your customers It’s scalable – if you double or triple the number of customers on your email database there is no extra […]

Read the full article →

Business Cards: Don’t Waste Money Printing Business Cards

July 5, 2012
Thumbnail image for Business Cards: Don’t  Waste Money Printing Business Cards

When people first start their own business, the first thing they do is get 1000 business cards printed. Don’t bother! Don’t print business cards because only people who want to sell you something (that you don’t need) will take them from you and use them. Do people that you need something from ever take your business card […]

Read the full article →

Twitter: You Suspect It Would Waste Your Time, Are You Right?

July 1, 2012
Thumbnail image for Twitter: You Suspect It Would Waste Your Time, Are You Right?

What is it? Twitter is a micro-blogging platform which enables 160 character text messages (called “Tweets”) to be broadcast to “Followers”. From a business perspective, Twitter can be useful in 2 ways: For introducing your brand to a new, tech-savvy segment of the population When you “Follow” someone they are notified via email (unless they […]

Read the full article →

In What Type Of Business Is The CEO Also The Receptionist?

June 11, 2012
Thumbnail image for In What Type Of Business Is The CEO Also The Receptionist?

You’ve probably noticed that there are often 2 types of receptionists in 9-5pm business offices: The first type I’ll call Wendy Winter and the second I’ll call Susan Summer. Wendy Winter Wendy doesn’t really want to be there She’ll be on Facebook most of the time if it hasn’t been blocked, and txt msg friends […]

Read the full article →

9 Reasons Why Outsourcing Your Sales Role Would be a Disaster

May 7, 2012
Thumbnail image for 9 Reasons Why Outsourcing Your Sales Role Would be a Disaster

Can you answer “yes” to one or more of these questions?: Is your business a one-man-band or husband-and-wife type of business? Are you a bit shy and find the prospect of networking and meeting people face to face a bit daunting? Are you thinking about outsourcing the sales role to a sales rep, either hiring […]

Read the full article →

Should You Quit Your Job And Start A Home Based Business? 8 Pros and 12 Cons To Help You Decide

April 27, 2012

Yesterday I was reading through one of my old journals from 3 years ago when I faced exactly this decision. In the journal I found my list of Pros and Cons that I had written to help me decide. Maybe they could help you to? PROS I’m ready. I’ve had my 3 years of experience. […]

Read the full article →

Confession: I Only Have 4 Skills

March 14, 2012

It’s true. My confession to you today is that I only have 4 skills. Skill #1: I Can Read Being able to read is my first skill. I read a speed reading book 4 years ago and it changed my life: 10 Days to Faster Reading by Abby Marks Beale It increased my comprehension from […]

Read the full article →

The Award For The Worst Toll Free Number Goes To 0800 MELANOMA

March 12, 2012

There’s an ad playing on the radio at the moment about a local skin cancer specialist. I have a problem with their choice of phone number: 0800 MELANOMA To me, this is a classic case of being unable to consider the customers perspective, who is looking into the business from the outside. The business owner […]

Read the full article →

A Facebook Page For Your Business? Should You Bother?

March 5, 2012
Thumbnail image for A Facebook Page For Your Business? Should You Bother?

Word of Mouth is how a business dies, survives or thrives, right? Well, social media platforms such as Facebook are Word-of-Mouth with a megaphone. Traditional, mass-media, or “broadcast” forms of advertising are becoming less effective because they are based on interruption. Media is continuing to fragment (more websites, more TV channels, more magazines) so it […]

Read the full article →

How To Handle Negative Reviews About Your Business

February 21, 2012

Have you ever looked up your own business online and found a negative review somewhere? Maybe you own a restaurant and you’ve just found a negative review on a restaurant directory written by someone who was grumpy that night and they have lashed out at you? Maybe you own a motel and you’ve just found […]

Read the full article →

The Art of the Start by Guy Kawasaki

February 17, 2012

My notes on “The Art of the Start” by Guy Kawasaki Complete This Sentence If your organisation never existed, the world would be worse off because… Take Notes To Impress When you are doing a pitch to an investor and they speak, take notes. The visible act of taking notes says: I think you’re smart […]

Read the full article →

How Are You Going To Change Your World in 2012?

December 9, 2011

Notice how I said “your world” rather than “the world”. Can one person change the world? Well, I do think one person can change 10 people. And those people can change 10 people each. And so on. And perhaps, in that fashion, you can change the world. But I’m talking about “your world”. Your world could be: […]

Read the full article →

I Earn 540 Dollars Per Month From A Blog About Hot Pools, Could You Do The Same With A Topic You Are Passionate About?

September 22, 2011

Almost 2 years ago I wrote an article called “Should You Sell Space On Your NZ Website For Banner Advertising?” in which I suggested you shouldn’t. 2 years later I haven’t change my mind. If it’s your core business then your website should focused on attracting new customers, and making sales, not earning a few dollars […]

Read the full article →

In New Zealand Is Facebook Just For Kids? No.

July 28, 2011

I thought it would be interesting to combine age group data from Facebook with age group data from Statistics New Zealand to see what proportion of each age group is using Facebook. In particular, I was interested in answers to questions like: Is Facebook mainly for teenagers? Are people over 50 using Facebook? Are people […]

Read the full article →

Overdue Invoices: 4 Simple Tips To Ensure Your Clients Pay On Time, Every Time. No More Overdue Invoices

June 3, 2011

Did you know that poor cashflow is the #1 killer of small New Zealand businesses? Do you have clients with overdue invoices right now? Do you grit your teeth when you check your bank account on the 20th of the month and find the deposits you were expecting, missing? Are your customers/clients slow to pay? […]

Read the full article →

Money Back Guarantees: Should You Offer None, 30 Days, or 30 Years?

May 23, 2011
Thumbnail image for Money Back Guarantees: Should You Offer None, 30 Days, or 30 Years?

You may have heard that money-back guarantees are a good idea but you are not sure if they are right for your business? Perhaps you are holding back because you are worried it’s going to cost you money handing out dozens of refunds, right? Offering any kind of money back guarantee is better than offering […]

Read the full article →

The No-Bullshit Way To Make Money Online: Slow Cook, Not Get-Rich-Quick

January 24, 2011
Thumbnail image for The No-Bullshit Way To Make Money Online: Slow Cook, Not Get-Rich-Quick

Over the last few years I have tried several ways of making money online. I wanted to get rich quick. Don’t we all? I fell for the hype and got out my credit card, but I’m not ashamed. I’m human, and the sales copy was brilliantly written and tapped into my psyche and convinced me. […]

Read the full article →

2 Vital Elements The “About Us” Page on Your Website May Be Missing

December 21, 2010

If you pay any attention to your webstats, you may have noticed that your About Us page is one of the least visited webpages on your website. This doesn’t mean it is unimportant. It is vitally important. The low traffic means that each prospective customer will visit it only once, so you’ve got one chance […]

Read the full article →

Online Advertising In NZ: A Crash Course On How You Can Get Started Advertising Your Business Online in New Zealand

November 17, 2010

Have you noticed how much publicity the growth of online advertising has been getting lately? If you are wondering: “Am I missing out because I haven’t tried online advertising yet?” and “How can I dip my toe in the water to see if online advertising is right for my business?”, then this crash course on […]

Read the full article →

The Squeaky Window Gets The Lube

November 10, 2010

For about a week I have noticed an extremely squeaky rear electric window in my car. It is like 5 teenagers scratching on a chalk board – a really horrendous sound. I hadn’t thought too deeply about what I should do about it when I heard a radio ad this afternoon “Free electric window lube […]

Read the full article →

Expired Domains: Picking Fruit From A Graveyard Of Failed Ideas?

September 7, 2010

Occasionally, just for fun, I spend a few minutes browsing www.ExpiredDomains.co.nz. Expired Domains lists all .nz domain names which have expired and are in the .nz registry’s official 90 day pending release period. But what I find most interesting about this list is that at first glance, many of them look like really good names! […]

Read the full article →

7 Ways To Get Your Website Working Harder For You

August 23, 2010

Is your website search engine friendly? Find out with a free review Is your website listed in the best, free NZ directories? Check the list Have you completed the 8 essential steps for getting a website working for you? Have you tried advertising using Google Adwords? Here’s how its done Have you got a copy […]

Read the full article →

Twitter/Facebook: How To Update Your Business Facebook Page Wall With Twitter

August 13, 2010

I am assuming you already have the following: Business Twitter Account Business Facebook Page (If you don’t, I can help you set up Twitter and Facebook for your business) You may be already aware how easy it is to update your personal Facebook Wall from Twitter.  But you don’t really want your tweets about your […]

Read the full article →

Business Facebook Pages: Simple Tips For Your Business Page on Facebook

August 12, 2010

See updated version: October 2012 If you are just about to set up a Business Page on Facebook this short list of tips will save you some time. #1. How to set a Facebook Business Page up You need a personal Facebook account before you can set up a business page. If you’re an employee, […]

Read the full article →

Move Out of the Way Little Kitten So I Can See The Brand Name!

July 13, 2010

If you run an icecream shop, you MUST copy this idea. Will it work for any other business? Probably not. You should have at least some sort of business connection otherwise all you’re doing is slapping scantily clad women on your ad for no good reason.

Read the full article →

Should I Give My Ebook Away For Free Or Require An Email Address?

June 14, 2010

I faced this decision 4 months ago over on my www.SearchEngineGuide.co.nz website (where I focus on SEO and Google Adwords). I had just decided to give away the 2009 version of my ebook “How To Optimise Your New Zealand Website For Search Engines” for free. My choices were to: Ask for a name and email […]

Read the full article →

5 Ways Your Potential Clients May Be Reacting To Your Contact Form (And What You Can Do About It)

June 3, 2010

Do you use a contact form on the “Contact Us” page on your website? If so, check this list of common mistakes to see if you are making your prospective clients angry or just turning them away. 5 Ways Your Potential Clients May Be Reacting To Your Contact Form (And What You Can Do About […]

Read the full article →

Is The Contact Form On Your Website Making Your Prospective Clients Angry?

June 3, 2010

I just wrote this article on another one of my Website blog. I like it, so I will republish it here. Do you use a contact form on the “Contact Us” page on your website? If so, check this list of common mistakes to see if you are making your prospective clients angry or just […]

Read the full article →

Got A NZ Business But Using A .com Website Address?

May 18, 2010

20% of google searchers see your .com result & think “how did that American website get into my search results? Google must have screwed up. Oh well, I’ll click on the next one”. Use a .co.nz website address if you have a NZ business. Even if your target customers are overseas, being a .co.nz adds […]

Read the full article →

What Are You Offering Your Clients? Junk, Rip-off, Bargain, Boring, or Quality?

May 18, 2010

Choose one (and only one) from the following list: Low Price + Low Service = Junk High Price + Low Service = Rip-off Low Price + High Service = Bargain Medium Price + Medium Service = Boring as hell High Price + High Service = Quality It’s time to get real and decide what you […]

Read the full article →

If advertising didn’t exist and there was only Word of Mouth, what would you do differently?

May 10, 2010

Would you change the way you serve your customers? Would you change the way you trained your staff? Would you change the products and services you offer? Would you quit your job and work for a different company? What else? Add to the comments below.

Read the full article →

How To Modify Your Advertising Depending On The Customers Usage Level And Loyalty

April 28, 2010

The next time you are writing an advertisement, or an article, or updating your website, choose your audience along the following grid of “usage” vs “loyalty”. Choose just one and ask yourself “how can I modify my message to speak just to them?”. Let’s look at each sector in more detail: 1. High/Med/Low User + […]

Read the full article →

B2B Marketing Plans: How To Create A One Page Marketing Plan – Just Answer These 7 Questions

April 26, 2010

Does your marketing plan need to be 10 pages? 20 pages? 200 pages? No. 1 page is fine. And all you need is the answers to these 7 questions. 7 Essential Questions For Your Business-to-Business Marketing Plan 1. What is your objective? Do you want to retire young? Do you want a million dollars? Do […]

Read the full article →

What Email Address Does The IRD Student Loan Newsletter Come From? MajorDomo@ird.govt.nz Of Course!

April 23, 2010

That is so weird. IRD has just stopped publishing their Student Loan info newsletter.  I got the last ever hard-copy today. From now on, if you want to know what’s going on with your student loan you have to sign up to the e-newsletter. So that’s what I did. And I just got an automated […]

Read the full article →

Tauranga Website Design: List of ALL The Tauranga Website Designers

April 13, 2010

I heard a rumour that Tauranga has a disproportionately high number of web designers. It turns out that this rumour may be true. List of ALL Tauranga Website Designers www.Firstbyte.co.nz [Portfolio | Pricing] www.GoodWebsites.co.nz www.WebsiteResults.co.nz www.Totali.co.nz www.Cohesion.co.nz www.ReserveGroup.co.nz www.BoldHorizon.co.nz www.CucumberSoftware.com www.IconAdvertising.co.nz www.Xeno.co.nz www.Markos.co.nz www.InboxDesign.co.nz www.VoltMedia.co.nz www.Moca.co.nz www.Reverb.co.nz www.aDesignWeb.co.nz www.DigitalEffects.co.nz www.e-Koncept.co.nz www.Enform.co.nz www.iLook.co.nz www.1stWeb.co.nz www.TaurangaWeb.co.nz www.DataDog.co.nz […]

Read the full article →

Demographic Segmentation: Are You Still Segmenting Your Customers With Demographics Like Age, Gender, Address Etc? Stop.

March 16, 2010

If you’ve looking into buying mailing lists you’ll know that those lists are all about demographics. Typical demographic are: Age Gender Address Job Title Income Education Do you like being put in these boxes and having assumptions made about you regarding your buying preferences? No? Neither do I. Let’s pretend for a moment that you […]

Read the full article →

Who Owns The Tauranga Domain Names?

March 15, 2010

I love lists. (And Google loves lists – there’s a free SEO tip for you!) So here is my list of Tauranga domain names, who owns them, and which ones are still for sale: New Zealand (.nz) Domain Names www.Tauranga.govt.nz – Official website of Tauranga City Council www.Tauranga.org.nz – Official website of Tauranga Chamber of […]

Read the full article →

More People Play Farmville Than Are On Twitter? The Future of Gaming

March 15, 2010

Did you know the video game industry pulls in US$14 BILLION a year? It’s huge. And it will get bigger. Questions addressed in this video: Why are corny games like Farmville & Mafia Wars  so popular? How do games like that generate millions of dollars in revenue when it’s free to play? Does technology converge […]

Read the full article →

The First 4 Questions You Must Always Ask When Planning A New Website

March 10, 2010

Who are the audience groups? What information do they want? What action do we want each audience group to take? How do we arrange the main navigation to give them access to that information and to take that action? (this is where we plan the sitemap) Need More Help To Plan Your Website? The task […]

Read the full article →

What Do You Do When You Need A Businesses Phone Number?

March 9, 2010

When I need a businesses phone number I go to Google Maps, and search for the business name there. 95% of the time the business appears with their phone number. What method do you use? Hardcopy white pages? Google Search? Google Maps? Finda.co.nz? Yellow.co.nz? Add your method to the comments below.

Read the full article →

List of Rental Cars Needing Relocation – How You Can Hire A Rental For Free

February 16, 2010

Rental Car companies are always needing to move their vehicles between branches around the country. You can return one of these rental cars for them for free (sometimes the rental is free and you pay petrol, sometimes they give you 50% off the rental, sometimes it’s totally free) If I’ve missed any on the following […]

Read the full article →

The 80 Best Guerrilla Marketing Ideas I’ve Ever Seen

February 5, 2010

Here is the first in this list: I didn’t get it at first – but the “fleas” are people walking accross the foyer of an office building or mall, so this is the view for people looking down from the 3rd or 4th floor. Pretty clever huh? Here are 79 more: The 80 Best Guerrilla […]

Read the full article →

Have You Tried Guerilla Miniature Billboard Advertising?

January 29, 2010

Whilst driving to Mount Maunganui yesterday I spotted these tiny billboards strapped to street light polls and road signage opposite Mount Maunganui High School: 4 Lessons You Can Learn From These Guerilla Miniature Billboards What can you learn from this clever “guerilla” method of advertising? Could you replicate this strategy for your business? 1. Do […]

Read the full article →

62 Ways to Advertise Your Business

January 27, 2010

Cinema 1. Pre-movie Advertisements 2. Product Placement in-movie TV 3. 15/30 second Television Advertisements 4. Infomercials 5. TV Programme Sponsorship 6. Television Interviews Newspaper 7. Regional Community Newspaper – freely distributed 8. Regional Daily Newspaper 9. National Daily Newspaper Radio 10. 15/30 second Radio Advertisements 11. Radio Interviews Outdoor 12. Billboards 13. Video Billboard 14. […]

Read the full article →

New Features From FeedMyInbox – More Than Just Converting RSS (News Feeds) Into Emails

January 22, 2010

Do any of the following apply to you? Have you heard about RSS but can’t really be bothered with it? Do you have a few favourite blogs or news sites, but it’s up to you to remember to check them for new content? Do you have a News Feed (RSS) Reader like Google Reader but […]

Read the full article →

Email Newsletters: 10 Tips For Designing & Building Your Email Newsletters

January 21, 2010

Great advice from Smashing Magazine about how to design and build your email newsletters: Respect your reader. Don’t waste their time or attention. Ask nicely first. Focus on relevance. Design with a goal in mind, so that you’ll know if it worked. Make unsubscribing easy. Code like it’s 1999 (literally) and use inline CSS. Always […]

Read the full article →

Is PayPal The Easiest, Cheapest Way For Your Non-NZ Customers To Pay You Into Your New Zealand Bank Account?

January 15, 2010

I’m hoping that this article will save you the 45 minutes of research I just had to do. Do you have clients or customers based outside of New Zealand? Do you want to know the easiest, cheapest way for those non-NZ customers to pay you into your New Zealand bank account? That’s exactly what I […]

Read the full article →

Difference Between Unique Visitors, Visitors, Visits, Page Views, Hits. And Why You Should Care

January 11, 2010

First, the definitions: Unique Visitors – The number of individuals who have visited your website. But, if a person on a dial-up connection disconnects and reconnects, they will be assigned a different IP address and therefore be counted as another unique visitor if they return to your website. Visits or Visitors – The number of […]

Read the full article →

Has Telecom New Zealand Finally Got Their Shit Together? Perhaps So.

January 8, 2010

Everyone likes to beat-up the big brands. They are an easy target. There is always something to complain about. And its comforting that your complaint is just one of many because you know there are hundreds or thousands of customers who feel the same way you do. You don’t expect to get an official response. […]

Read the full article →

A Successful Business Owner Told Me “No I Don’t Have A Website, In Fact I Don’t Do Any Advertising”

January 1, 2010

Earlier this week I needed to find a catery for my cat because we are going away for a few days in January.  A friend of mine is a vet and she recommended both Te Puna Cat Resort, and Top Katz Boarding Cattery (also in Te Puna). I searched Google for each, and both times […]

Read the full article →

Want Free Media Exposure? What The News Media Values & How You Can Get Your Business In The News

December 24, 2009

Yes, you can buy air time for your TV ads or radio ads. Yes, you can buy space for your newspaper ads. But you can also get mentioned in all of these media for free if you can create a newsworthy story. The first step is to ask the question “What do news editors look […]

Read the full article →

Contacting a WebSite Owner Via Email? An Easy Way to Get Your Email Message Noticed

December 23, 2009

I’ve just made a discovery that I’d like to share with you. Firstly, I’m a big fan of email. 5 Reasons Why Email is my Preferred Method of Communication: It provides me with a permanent record of what was said to who and when It’s more reliable than my memory for recording facts It doesn’t […]

Read the full article →

Generating Revenue By Subscription – Free To Start With And Then Start Charging? Does It Work?

December 14, 2009

Are you tempted to start charging for access to your website? Maybe it’s a blog, maybe it’s news, maybe its whitepapers in your area of expertise. If the revenue model for your website is by subscription you have 3 primary choices: Free content You ask for email addresses, but you don’t demand them for access […]

Read the full article →

Meet Your Local Cybersquatter: Dave Burghardt Who Owns TaurangaAirport.co.nz and Tauranga-Airport.co.nz

December 11, 2009

I was looking for flights from Tauranga to Dunedin yesterday, I searched for “Tauranga Airport” and came across www.TaurangaAirport.co.nz. It is a hideous 1 page website that talked about car rental. Not what I was expecting at all! I was suspicious so dug a little deeper using a “whois lookup” to find out who the […]

Read the full article →

The Most Direct Direct Mail I’ve Ever Directed

December 1, 2009

The Story The client owns a website that lists all the 100+ thermal hot pools around New Zealand. They wanted to upgrade the 36 commercial hot pools from the free listing (every hot pools was entitled to one of these), to the Premium listing which provided greater detail and made the hot pool more attractive […]

Read the full article →

Old News is Bad News – Is The “Latest News” On Your Website Ancient?

November 23, 2009

Have you ever heard this from a web developer? “You need a news page so you can keep your content fresh.  Google and users love fresh content!” “You need a blog, because Google loves blogs and you’ll look professional to users too!” “You need to get on Twitter, Facebook and Linked-In, because social media is […]

Read the full article →

If The Business Model Works, Clone It

November 16, 2009

The single most visited webpage on this blog is my article about “One Day Sale” Websites. It gets 700 unique visitors a day (growing by 5% every week) and is #2 on Google.co.nz for the search for “one day deal“. Why is the webpage so popular? For 3 reasons: Because people are getting tired of […]

Read the full article →

Essential Steps for Building a Website That Generates Business For You

November 14, 2009

8 Essential Steps: Define the most important action that you want the audience to take. Is it filling in an enquiry form? Call your toll free number? Download an information pack? Make it dead easy for them to take that action. 1 click or 2 clicks. Not 5 clicks Make your forms super short. Ask […]

Read the full article →

How To Write For The Web

November 14, 2009

Writing for the web is pretty simple on the surface, but the switch from writing for print to writing for the web is a difficult one for many people. Here are some writing-for-the-web techniques to get you started: 1. Use long descriptive headlines, sub headings and sub-sub headings People commonly skim read web content very […]

Read the full article →

“Everyone is Clueless” – Article by Seth Godin

November 7, 2009

Particularly enjoyed this blog article by Seth Godin entitled “Everyone is clueless“: The problem with “everyone” is that in order to reach everyone or teach everyone or sell to everyone, you need to so water down what you’ve got you end up with almost nothing. Everyone doesn’t go to the chiropractor, everyone doesn’t give to […]

Read the full article →

How I Almost Got Fired Because My Direct Mail Worked Too Well

November 1, 2009

The Story A recruitment company I was working for wanted to reach out to Human Resources managers to tell them about their online recruitment solution. We had purchased a list of 560 HR manager names and addresses from Veda Advantage, and needed a letter that would “cut through the clutter”, because this would be the […]

Read the full article →

Why Is Harvey Norman Stuck In The 1990’s?

October 31, 2009

Yes, yes, Harvey Norman does sell the latest technology: Plasma TVs, Laptops, Macbooks, Printers, Digital Cameras etc (at awesome prices), but why oh why do they contradict this image with the following: Dot matrix printers for printing out your receipt A 1990’s website With a “splash” page (the home page just has a big photo […]

Read the full article →

The Sad, Sad Story Of The Man With The Worthless US$50 Million Music Collection

October 30, 2009

Have you heard about this guy, Paul Mawhinney? He owns The Worlds Greatest Music Collection. 3 Million Records 300,000 Compact Discs More Than 6 Million Song Titles It’s a sad story (with no happy ending… yet). He’s trying to sell his collection so he can retire. But no-one will buy it. What is Paul Mawhinney […]

Read the full article →

Dear Universe: Thank You For All The Free Software I Use Daily

October 29, 2009

It is time I thanked the universe for all the software I use everyday for free. I make money out of using these tools (because they help me do my job) and it doesn’t cost me anything. So here’s a list of my top 6 (in order of “most thankful”): 1. Gmail What is it? […]

Read the full article →

Evidence That The Whole Vegemite “iSnack 2.0” Fiasco Was A Genuine Mistake

October 16, 2009

The old way of launching a new FMCG (Fast Moving Consumer Good) product: Marketing team comes up with alternative names (using focus groups, brainstorming etc) Present the shortlist of their favourites to management for them to choose The product is launched with the new name with a huge amount of expensive mass advertising The new […]

Read the full article →

Is Your Target Market Small to Medium Sized NZ Businesses? How to Choose Advertising That Reaches Them

October 12, 2009

This article answers 2 questions: Where can you find stats about your target market (if you are B2B)? How effective is your advertising at reaching this target market? 1. Where can you find stats about your target market (if you are B2B)? The ministry of Economic Development released the following report in July 09: Small […]

Read the full article →

Should You Sell Space On Your NZ Website For Banner Advertising?

October 5, 2009

You might be thinking “hey, we’ve got quite a bit of traffic to our website these days, we could earn easy money by selling space for banner advertisements!” STOP you silly goose! Here’s why: 5 Reasons NOT To Sell Space on Your NZ Website For Banner Advertising: 1. Because you don’t really want to send […]

Read the full article →

How I Completely Redeveloped an Education Brands Marketing to Increase Enrolment and Drive Down Student Acquisition Cost

October 1, 2009

The Story The client was offering a high quality education product but didn’t have the resources in-house to market and package it well. Problem areas identified included: A single webpage about the product hosted on an unrelated website Confusing brand name, logo, and other imagery Poorly formated promotional material Unattractive, hard-to-navigate, error-ridden intranet for enrolled […]

Read the full article →

Radio Advertising Is Mostly A Waste Of Money, But Here’s 4 Tips To Give You A Chance At Making A Radio Ad That Works

September 24, 2009

Very soon I will share with you 4 tips on how to write a radio ad that actually works. But first, I want you to think about radio advertising from your point of view as a member of the audience. Q: Why do you listen to the radio? Music? Witty Commentary? Advertising? Because you like […]

Read the full article →

8 Tips For Getting Better-Than-Average Results From Your First Tradeshow or Expo in New Zealand

September 22, 2009

1. All the best booths gone? Only a few right at the back to choose from? Fine! Don’t worry too much about your location. You instinctively think that a high traffic area would be better, but don’t make that assumption (most people assume that a #1 position using google Adwords is the best, but you […]

Read the full article →

How To Feature Your Business In Any Major NZ Magazine For $2.57

September 19, 2009

In 3 Easy Steps Step #1: Contact the publisher/distributor and get a special deal for about 50/100 copies of the next issue.  Tell them this is their chance to expand their subscriber base and you want them for free. Step #2: Announce to prospective clients (like at a trade show, conference, expo, chamber of commerce, […]

Read the full article →

Viral Video – How Do You Create a Viral Video For Your Business?

September 9, 2009

Have you wondered how to create a YouTube video that “goes viral” and creates a torrent of new clients for your business? Here are 3 essential components for a viral video that can generate business for you: It must be entertaining/hilarious/amazing It must have a business objective, a reason for being A mechanism so that […]

Read the full article →

10 Reasons Why the Marketing Association of New Zealand’s Website Sucks

September 4, 2009

1. The search is crap To demonstrate, here is the results for my search for “marketing”: Can you detect a complex search algorithm at work here? Me neither. They can take some comfort in the fact that very few websites have a decent search engine, but the rule is “if it doesn’t work like Google […]

Read the full article →

How We Created a Highly Targeted and Inexpensive Direct Mail Campaign and Achieved a Response Rate of 5.3%

September 1, 2009

The Story The client was about to build a new pier that would contain space for 2 restaurants/bars/cafes. We decided early on that the best bet would be to advertise locally because we knew that many of the owners of these restaurants/bars/cafe’s own several establishments and may have intentions to add to their portfolio or […]

Read the full article →

Is Honesty Really The Best Policy? Honest Marketing Even When The Truth Hurts – A Case Study

September 1, 2009

I just helped put together a “customer satisfaction survey” for a client. (P.S. I used Open Source survey software – Lime Survey.  I use open source, free software whenever I can to save money for my clients.  But I don’t put up with crap. If it’s free and good quality, then I’ll use it. If […]

Read the full article →

What? You’re Still Not Text Message Marketing To Your Customers? No Excuse, Because Now It’s Free From Vodafone’s Website

August 21, 2009

In a moment I’ll tell you how to start Mobile Marketing (with txt msg’s) to your customers from Vodafone for free, but first… In my opinion, not enough businesses use Text Messaging (SMS or Txt Msg) to communicate with their customers. Do you get txt reminders from your mechanic when your WOF or your next […]

Read the full article →

What’s Your Excuse For Having a Crap Website Or Not Having One At All?

August 20, 2009

There is no excuse. If you spend anytime on the internet (and if you’re reading this, you do), then you will come across hideous websites all the time. Here are 2 I came across in the last 10 minutes: 1. www.AllAboutSports.co.nz 3 Reasons why this website sucks: Broken/lost images It was built with Microsoft Word […]

Read the full article →

Call Your Cat Bob And See If It Still Wants Dinner – Do Your Customers Care About Your Name?

August 18, 2009

One of my favourite Gary Larson cartoons is “What we say to dogs, and what they hear. What we say to cats, and what they hear”. (Shown on right. Click to enlarge). I thought my cat was smarter than that. I was convinced that she responds to her name. But as an experiment I started […]

Read the full article →

If You Don’t Like The Movie, Can You Get a Refund?

August 13, 2009

I get very nervous when I go to the movie theatre. Not about the chance of soiling my pants with explosive diarrhea after eating too much from the all-you-can-eat Chinese smorgasbord from next door. Not about the possibility of dropping my frozen coke onto my lap and leaving the theatre looking like I pissed my […]

Read the full article →

Do You Make Your Most Loyal Customers Furious?

August 11, 2009

I have been with Genesis Energy for 12 years. I’ve spent about $20,000 – $25,000 with them in that time. 6 months ago they did something that made me furious, and this morning they did something else. That’s twice in 6 months! Will they get the next $20,000 that I am likely to spend on […]

Read the full article →

Bed and Breakfast Marketing – Ideas for Marketing Your New Zealand B&B

August 7, 2009

A client of mine runs a Bed and Breakfast in Papamoa.  I built the website for her in June 2009, and we’ve been disappointed with the web traffic to date so she asked me look into Bed and Breakfast Marketing for her. Do you need help with the marketing and advertising of your Bed and […]

Read the full article →

How an author creates mystery, buzz, anticipation, and a community of die hard fans that do his marketing for him

August 5, 2009

Quite by accident I came accross the first book in a trilogy (my mother-in-law got it for $1 from a book fair). In fact, I didn’t realise it was a trilogy until I got to the end of the book.  It was a very interesting story (read about it on Wikipedia), and I enjoyed the […]

Read the full article →

How I Launched a Small Online Business for $29 Which Several Newspapers Including the NZ Herald Interviewed Me About So They Could Run Stories On It

August 1, 2009

The Story You have probably heard that a good way to learn is to read, but the best way to learn is to do. I agree. And so in June 2005, I decided to put together everything I had been learning at university about marketing, advertising, public relations, graphic design, and programming. So I built […]

Read the full article →

Real Estate Agents Are Annoying But They Sure Know How to Network

July 31, 2009

Do you get business cards or flyers in your letterbox from Real Estate Agents in your area? I’m sure you do. Everyone does. (I’d put a “No Circulars” sign on our letterbox but my wife loves to sift through the junk mail for a bargain). One of the most common is the postcard with a […]

Read the full article →

How can you turn the evil that-is-the-Readers-Digest-Sweepstakes into good?

July 29, 2009

If you are human and you have a letterbox (or even a pile of bricks at the start of your driveway that someone could stick a letter into), then chances are, you have received one of these Readers Digest Sweepstakes letters. If you haven’t, then I am amazed. So, what can we learn from Readers […]

Read the full article →

Could bayofplentynz.com do better than a billboard that says “Nothing to do in Tauranga?”?

July 29, 2009

I came across these billboards on Maunganui road today. Could bayofplentynz.com do better than “Nothing to do in Tauranga?”? Yes, I think so. That’s a terrible headline. It’s negative. How about “What to do in Tauranga?” for example? And what are the billboards doing in Tauranga anyway? I assume the target audience is tourists already […]

Read the full article →

Under New Management – We’ve Fixed All the Things the Last Guy Broke, Please Come Back

July 16, 2009

When you see the sign “Under New Management” plastered all over a businesses signage what do you think? Do you think: “Good! The last guy that managed the place was a real bastard, I’m glad he’s gone, I will go back there now!” Do you think: “Damn! Jack and Jill were awesome, I will miss […]

Read the full article →

Accepting Credit Card Payments Online – List of NZ Providers

July 15, 2009

Do you want to sell your products online? Do you want to be able to accept credit card payments? Want to avoid spending the big bucks on getting your website redesigned with ecommerce functionality? Just want to provide a simple “Buy Now” button for your customers? If so, you’re in luck, because today I have […]

Read the full article →

How to Turn Your Junk To Gold – 6 Simple Tips for Selling on TradeMe

July 14, 2009

Read the updated version of this article: Nov 2012 Ahh TradeMe, we all love it Don’t you think it’s amazing how much gold people will pay for your junk? Do you want to squeeze every last dollar out of each TradeMe sale? You are about to find out how. Think of the process of selling […]

Read the full article →

How Many Things Can A Restaurant Do Wrong and Still Stay In Business?

July 5, 2009

It must be 9 because last night the Jasmine Thai Restaurant in Tauranga made 8 screw ups: The outside signage was so dark and small that half of our party couldn’t find the restaurant when they drove past The jugs of water that were served when we arrived were at room temperature. No ice. No […]

Read the full article →

What is the second tap on a water cooler for? I don’t understand

June 22, 2009

Have you come across a water cooler like the one shown in this photo? (see photo on right) And like me, have you wondered which tap to use? Sometimes one tap is colour-coded red to indicate hot water.  Sometimes one is white, the other is blue to indicate cool water and cold water (which is […]

Read the full article →

Pay What You Want

June 18, 2009

You’ve heard about the restaurants in Auckland where you can pay whatever you feel is right for your meal after you’ve eaten it? Well how about paying what you want for a night for two in a deluxe suite? It’s only US$19 a night… bed not included. That’s in San Diego’s at the Rancho Bernardo […]

Read the full article →

How To Write For The Web

June 10, 2009

Writing for the web is pretty simple on the surface, but the switch from writing for print to writing for the web is a difficult one for many people. Here are some writing-for-the-web techniques to get you started: 1. Use long descriptive headlines, sub headings and sub-sub headings People commonly skim read web content very […]

Read the full article →

Does your webpage content need to be “above the fold”? The Myth Exposed

June 10, 2009

In the 90’s that was a good rule of thumb: If the content for your webpage fills more than the browser window and forces people to scroll down to read it, split it up on to multiple pages. That is no longer the case, for 3 reasons: People are used to scrolling down the page […]

Read the full article →

Do you make the mistake of putting your brand and logo at the top of your print ads?

June 5, 2009

If so, you are not alone. But even so, STOP IT! Here is an example in this weeks edition of the Bay News for Metal Man Recyclers, Koromiko Street, Tauranga. This approach is classic, and very common…  But still wrong! The problem is there are 3 audiences: The business/advertiser (who is paying for the ads) […]

Read the full article →

How many reward cards do you have in your wallet?

June 3, 2009

I’ve got a truckload. I’m pretty good a throwing receipts away, but I’m a sucker for a bargain so keep many rewards cards. The most common type is “buy 9 cups of coffee, get your 10th cup free”. From VTNZ Hewlets Road I’ve got “get 2 WOF’s, get $5 off the third, get 2 more […]

Read the full article →

Is Georgie Pie coming back? Why did Georgie Pie fail last time? Who owns GeorgiePie.co.nz?

May 22, 2009

So you’ve probably heard about how the “Bring Georgie Pie back” campaign on Facebook has over 21,000 members (and climbing fast). And that McDonalds owns the brand and they haven’t decided if it will consider bringing it back yet. I have 2 questions: Why did Georgie Pie fail last time? Who owns GeorgiePie.co.nz? Q1: Why […]

Read the full article →

Can you tell me what you want?

May 17, 2009

Just watched a Malcolm Gladwell presentation about the work of experimental psychologist Howard Moskowitz. He talked about how people don’t know what they really want. They have trouble articulating it.  “The mind knows not what the tongue wants”. One example he used is; ask people how they like their coffee, they will reply “a dark […]

Read the full article →

How to receive News Feeds (RSS) via email

May 16, 2009

In one of my all time favourite books – Tim Ferris, The 4 Hour Workweek (in fact I quit my day job because of this book), he talks about productivity (you certainly have to be very productive to only work for 4 hours a week). One way to increase productivity is to limit distractions. But […]

Read the full article →

Are Unhappy Customers Damaging Your Brand Online? What Can You Do About It?

May 15, 2009

Anybody can write anything, at anytime about your brand online. Sometimes they will have good things to say and you benefit from positive word-of-mouth. Yay! Sometimes they will have bad things to say, and these comments can damage your brand. Boooo! What can you do to minimise the damage to your brand? There are 2 […]

Read the full article →

Example of how new packaging can give boring products new life

May 15, 2009

Check out these fun and funky first aid kits Are you selling a product or service that’s a little bit boring? How can you funk it up with new packaging?

Read the full article →

The Principle of Scarcity at Work at a new Hamilton Restaurant

May 12, 2009

Went to Smith and McKenzie Chop House on the weekend. Quite an experience. Seth Godin (my #1 favourite marketer in the world), says that you have to tell a story to have any chance of selling what you are selling. Smith and McKenzie tells a story. As soon as you walk in you notice the […]

Read the full article →

Reasons Why Websites Are My Favourite Marketing and Advertising Medium

May 12, 2009

7 Reasons: Websites operate 24 hours a day, every day (I love the idea that you can make money or achieve your goals while you sleep!) Accessible from anywhere in the world Well written content is like having a team of non-pushy sales people simply providing the information and answering questions that potential customers are […]

Read the full article →

Essential Steps for Building a Website That Generates Business For You

May 12, 2009

8 Essential Steps: Define the most important action that you want the audience to take. Is it filling in an enquiry form? Call your toll free number? Download an information pack? Make it dead easy for them to take that action. 1 click or 2 clicks. Not 5 clicks Make your forms super short. Ask […]

Read the full article →

How To Build A Website That Wins You Business

May 12, 2009

7 Steps for Building a Business-Winning Website Define the most important action that you want the audience to take. Is it filling in an enquiry form? Call your toll free number? Download an information pack? Make it dead easy for them to take that action Ensure your code is search engine friendly: Clean urls like […]

Read the full article →