Monthly Archives: January 2009

Measuring Your Marketing


Measuring the Marketing Mix

Like you, I’m a marketer, the difference being I’m hired to market for others.  So, imagine me going to a client, and saying:

 “Hey, I have a great idea!  Let’s spend tons of time, personnel resources & money. 
But I have no idea what to measure or what we get in return!”  

Quantifying marketing can be difficult.  

And, what exactly should you measure?


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Celebration for Sully!

Nothing beats a small town celebration!

Sully, dubbed the Hero of the Hudson, was honored Saturday January 24th small town style!

Sully received the 2nd ever key to the City of Danville, was named an honorary Danville cop, and was greeted with love and adoration by all.  There was even a flyover!

I was among thousands on hand.  They played the National Anthem.  Yes, I cried (see 7 things about me


CNN reporting from our little town

CNN reporting from our little town

My view

My view


A Poor Leader should become a Follower


People in leadership positions who do not possess the qualities to become proficient as leaders will never become successful role models.

Leaders are supposed to act as role models for the general population. People without the proper guidance or altruistic motives are likely to become poor leaders as a result.

Poor leaders make decisions based on self advancement, without listening to others, and lack transparency to those that most closely support them. Typically, leaders that are not adept at their position do not lead for the welfare of the group.

When times are good, it’s easy to think a leader possesses character and integrity. It’s during tough times their true character is revealed. It is during this time that a leader will lose the trust of his or her followers. Once that happens it’s an uphill climb to get back that support, if ever.

A good leader must “own” the decisions that he or she makes and take the responsibility for any negative outcome of those decisions. The bad leader will instead find scapegoats and blame others.

Unfortunately in business poor leaders get huge compensation packages even after running the company into the ground. They’ve convinced themselves they deserve it, they got there alone and nobody could have done the job any better.

If you’ve followed your leader for some time, the current economic cycle is your chance to assess exactly what kind of leader you follow.  You owe it to yourself to align with someone that has the capabilites and character to lead.

photo credit

Get Word of Mouth – Fast


Learning from the big boys


Take a page from the playbook of global giants, like GE, and use Net Promoter® scores to identify solid influencers.  It’s simple, cheap and it can create a word of mouth campaign to attract new customers.

Cheap & easy?  Tell me more!

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Gary V – I Disagree!

gary-v-agI missed RE Connect in NYC this year – but kept up via Twitter and various live streams.  All the excitement about the dynamic presentation given by Gary V piqued my curiosity.  I was floored when I watched the video on Facebook – and not in a good way.


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MBA – get a Clue (train)…

cluetrain-7784761To:  The Mortgage Bankers Association
From:  Brandie Young

January 12, 2009

Re: Have you heard the terms “Transparency” or “Web 2.0”.  Really?

Dear MBA,

For over a decade, I’ve attended more MBA events than I can remember.  Your events are top-notch and attract the best and brightest from many walks of the mortgage, mortgage related and real estate industries. 

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but most of the companies (especially Lenders) are out of business – thus the ~40% drop in event attendance.  These are tough times in our industry.  While I’m all about monetizing, I think the time is ripe for the MBA to step into current times, and help keep the people that can’t afford the very pricey cost of attending.  Why?  To update your brand and keep your leadership position.

You are the best example of a broadcast brand I’ve seen.  And that’s not a compliment.

Your communications are one-way.  We (members of the industry) don’t really have a say in context or content of the events.  And, since you don’t allow ANY video to be taken of presentations, those that can’t afford to attend can’t get the benefit of the sage wisdom dispensed during the sessions. 

If as an industry we are to pull ourselves up, dust off and forge ahead – we require this information like oxygen. 

I suggest urge that you live stream the events.  You will not lose attendance as a result.  People that can attend, will do so for the networking and sales opportunities.  Really.  Instead, you will become a hero to the masses that can’t attend, and perhaps prove value to those that question spending a grand or so to attend and win them as future attendees.

Plus, it will keep the events top-of-mind with those that hope to attend in the future.  (You know, that 40% that aren’t attending events this year.)

Let go of the control
Listen to your members. 
Let the members define the events and participate virtually. 

By letting go, you will get far more down the road.  You will be appreciated.  You may even create evangelists.

Test it out.  Send a survey to see if that’s what the industry wants out of our Association.  And, if you must – charge for it – but a meager $10.   



p.s.  And let us throw a party, even if we aren’t exhibiting or sponsoring.  Sheesh.

Designed by commitee, led by an Emperor wearing no clothes

Designed. By. Committee.

Three little words that burn your tongue, add weeks to your web development, or other creative project, and in the end will result in work of which you may not be proud, or worse, work you won’t show in your portfolio.

When your Emperor wears no clothes, is candor wise ... or career suicide?

When your Emperor wears no clothes, is candor wise ... or career suicide?

It’s an ages-old conundrum: Successfully lead a creative project, meet deadlines and keep your wits (and ego) in check when your Emperor wants to be involved at a granular level (read: art direct), demanding to see it “a little larger”, “slightly bluer”, logo here, there and everywhere, more buttons, more content, (insert scream here). Or, even better, when a single remark from his Empress changes the entire scope of a project?

This is particularly challenging when neither the Emperor, nor his court, have any relative experience.

I’d love to say I have the secret words, beans, sauce, formula or anything else to resolve this, but, I am working to master it myself.

After all, he is the Emperor. It’s his Kingdom. So, at some point, you may decide the hill isn’t worth the fight, knowing you can make changes if analytics show a less than favorable response.

I did pick up a few tricks from a fantastic creative director. His NYC moxy and years of agency experience make him difficult to bully. He probably was the most effective I’ve seen managing an Emperor (and his court) through the creative process, compromising where needed – yet maintaining the integrity of the project.

I don’t see this changing anytime soon ever, particularly in an entrepreneurial company. So instead I will make this blanket plea to Emperors everywhere:

We love you. We admire you. You are phenomenal. Your innovative, unique thinking and vision created the Kingdoms in which we love to work, play and thrive, and for that we are grateful. That said, please try to recognize that your greatness may be better utilized in other areas, outside of the creative arena.

Written with love ….