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Four Trade Show Tips

We love helping our clients do a better job during trade shows.  It'sTrade Show crop   exciting to see a real return on investment rather than simply pouring dollars into an event and walking away with very little.   Here are four simple tips you can do at your next event which will bring you rewards and help build relationships with consumers.

  • Approach & Be Approachable - If you can walk outside of your booth space...do it.  Engage people with a smile and direct eye contact.  Say, "Hello."  Act as if the event is the most important thing in your day (because it is) and get attendees to talk.  Say something memorable.  Engage...that's why you're there.
  • Ask Open Ended Questions - "What brought you to the trade show today?" is a good start.  Then...listen to the answer.  You, or you may know of someone at the show, might just have the solution to their quest.  (Bonus Tip:  Make sure YOU walk the show too and make a note about other businesses that have unique products/services and refer when you can.) When you ask a question that fails to get an answer you've got zero to build on.
  • Have An Approachable Booth - Please stop fencing yourself off from the attendees.  If you must have a table make sure it's tall and only in one corner of the booth space.  Put your phone down.  No eating in the booth...  Want to check messages, sit or have something to eat?  Head to the exhibitor lounge area.  Make sure your booth graphics are crisp and clearly identify who and what you are.
  • Get Information - Find a way to pull information from attendees who stop at your booth and then follow up after the show.  If you're not serious about doing business how can you expect your potential new customer to be serious about what you're selling?

If you would like some additional trade show tips and SEE what I'm talking about.  Here is a post I did last year with video.  Are you getting the most out of your trade show effort?

Thanks for coming by.  If you would like to carry on the conversation, leave me a comment below, send me an e-mail, come by out Facebook Page or follow us on Twitter:  @InsightADV

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Sunday Morning Coffee - April 24, 2011

It's like sitting down over a cup of coffee talking about some things ofCoffee Cu ps  interest and (perhaps) importance.  We'll have a little gossip, some politics, some business, some fun and you're invited.  Feel free to respond below, send me an e-mail, follow me on Twitter or head to my personal Facebook Page.  Lot's of ways to carry on the conversation.  Let's go:

Tin Hat Stories from the Iowa House of Representatives

Last week five of the more "colorful characters" in the Iowa Legislature, Tom Shaw (R-Laurens), Kim Pearson (R-Pleasant Hill), Betty De Boef (R-What Cheer), Dwayne Alons (R-Hull) and Glenn Massie (R-Des Moines) appear to believe the "Steve Deace Press Releases" that the Iowa Woman Tin Hat Supreme Court somehow overstepped their authority in saying discrimination is against the Iowa Constitution.  Civics lesson kids....  Interestingly one of my best friends House Majority Leader, Kraig "We Didn't Qualify!" Paulsen (R- Hiawatha) said the resolution calling for the impeachment of four Iowa Supreme Court Justices won't see the light of day.  But, make no mistake, Paulsen and his friend Richard "What about polygamists?" Anderson (R-Clarinda) ) may find another way to make this work.  Here is the latest from our friends at the Des Moines Register.

I've been following the votes of Chris "We didn't qualify!" Hagenow (R-Windsor Heights) with some interest.  It might be old news but I am fastinated with his vote to cut pre-school education and to deny future funding for Iowa Public Schools.  He represents me and the other two Democrats here in "The Village" of Windsor Heights and I just wanted him to know it's disappointing.

OK, Enough Politics!  Let's Move On To Something FUN!

There is sun shining now in Western Iowa.  A gentle breeze and a warmth being spread across a giant portion of our great state that will make those folks in Carroll, Fort Dodge, Sioux City and Sidney a reason to smile again.  A reason to wake up and feel as though they too are part of this great nation.  I am happy for them and for my new favorite city, Ames.  Ok, now I'm really done with politics...but that was fun.

Using Twitter for Business - You Do...Right?

Twitterflyer-001 Last week I had the pleasure to do a seminar for some small business owners on the value of Twitter for Business.  We think it's an amazing tool to not only share what is on your mind but also connect with consumers and learn what is on the top of their minds.  We're with Gary Vaynerchuk when he says, "Twitter search is one of the most powerful consumer learning devices on the planet."  He's right and as a holiday weekend gift.  Here is the Twitter for Business handout.  Hope it helps and if you want to download or have a better view, just click on the image.  One more thing, here is Gary talking with Piers Morgan about why Twitter is so powerful as a listening post.

 

Thought you might like that.

It's the Easter Weekend and The Atheists Are In Town

They tell us that it not to provoke Christians...being in town and makingAmerican Atheist Logo  a big deal of it over the Easter Weekend.  But...it is.  You and I both know it.  To say it was only because they got "great room rates" is being a little disingenuous at best.  It did, however, get them more press than had they been in Des Moines two weeks ago.  But, it was fun having them here.  I always get a chuckle when people try to convert others to their belief and yet know so very little about it.  And this is their logo?  Come on guys...you can do better.  Need help? 

We hope you had/have a wonderful and meaningful Easter Holiday!  One thing:  Can somebody explain to me what a "Bunny" has to do with the most significant Christian Holiday on the calendar?  Just asking because...it's odd.

Happy Passover from Mason City, Iowa

This week has also been Passover.  One of my favorite holidays because of the very powerful message of freedom AND it usually means "Spring".  Except this year.  Here's a very quick video from the Adas Israel Community Seder one of only a dozen Jewish Congregations in Iowa.

 

Chag Sameach!  Passover concludes after nightfall on the 26th.  If you are interested here is the Facebook Page for Adas Israel, Mason City, Iowa.

We're Excited!

One of our clients, even though they have been working their huge plant 24/7 since Fall, just announced that unless folks have pre-paid orders they won't be able to take any new customers until production increases which is expected to happen yet this summer.  Very nice!  What did they do different?  They continued R&D and Marketing right on through the recession without missing a beat.  While others were running for the woods they were hiring and building market share.   Just sharing with you.

Major Changes Coming to the Webcast One LIVE NetworkWebCastOneLive image web

I can't say too much but it looks like a couple of new personalities will be joining the Webcast One LIVE platform next month.  One of those names is listed above.  No it's not Piers...yet.

We Found This Story Shocking...

In Iowa we have medical facilities, treating and caring for some of the most vunerable humans, inspected (are you ready for this?) once in twenty-years.  That is not a typo.  Having some experience in long term care I was shocked by this story coming out of the Des Moines Register telling us that hospice providers are inspected by the state only once every two decades.  In the story, by Clark Kauffman, you'll find some Rod-roberts-300x210 other interesting details.  Wait...let me think back...it's coming to me...who is in charge of the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals who, because the Sky is Falling in Iowa, reduced inspection staff by nearly 25% to save $125,000?   Wait...hold on..I'll remember!  Rod "Gotta Make Cuts" Roberts the guy with zero professional experience in health care who suggests that it's better to be more "friendly" to health care providers and let the market fix itself. But then he is taking marching orders from his buddy Governor "For Life" Terry Branstad.  WAIT!  I said NO MORE POLITICS!  This isn't...it's common sense.  The two have very little in common.

On That Happy Note - Thank You!

Thanks for coming by for a sip of Sunday Morning Coffee.  Hope you've learned something and maybe even got mad...or at least irritated.  Just a little. If you want to carry on the conversation...love to.  We're back to business tomorrow with the Insight on Business News Hour - Metro Monday Edition with our guest John Garvey from Proxymity.  Have a fantastic Sunday!

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Budgeting Time for Social Media/Marketing

Recently I did a presentation for a group of business people at the Urbandale Chamber of Commerce.  I was talking about using Twitter for Business.  How it works, how to use it and why it's such an important part of following consumer trends.  You do use it for business...right?

That discussion always leads into using other social media/marketingMPL Twelve Thirty  tools like Facebook and, what we think is critical for business, the Business Blog.  (You do have one...right?)  Now, with all heads swirling, comes the question:  "I'm busy.  How much time should I devote to social media/marketing?"  The answer is easy:

"Enough to make it work for you."

That's the easy answer.  But, if you are looking for something more concrete try this:

Budget thirty minutes four times a week for your business blog.  This is the writing, downloading of images and doing outward bound links....all very important.  The secret to this is your Social Media Plan (Here's a quick video from the road.)  IF you already KNOW what you want to accomplish by engaging the public you don't have to "come up with something to write about".  And, because you're keeping NOTES on ideas...everyday...this starts to get easy very quickly.

Budget about thirty minutes each day for Twitter.  More if you are just starting out.  Once your profile is complete (Critical!) and you've built a following you can employ the 80/20 Rule.  80% of your time is being social.  Asking questions, communicating with folks who you find interesting, telling the world that you love coffee.  Twitter is not only a fantastic news/learning/search tool it's also about the conversation.  The other 20% can point folks to your blog, to your business or to articles Teletype that are important to your business...and your target consumer.

Pop in and out of Twitter several times a day to check messages directly to you or about you.  Remember, Twitter is like the old AP/UPI Teletype we had in news rooms.  It just keeps rolling along spitting out content every second.  So, if you want to be in the content stream it's important to check in on a regular basis.  And, now with the ability to do that from your mobile...it gets even easier. (Photo - Flicker/Marilin Gonzalo)

Thanks for reading and hope it helps.  @MichaelLibbie (personal & business), @InsightADV (business baby...all business) or my personal Facebook is here.  Have a great week!

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Sunday Morning Coffee - April 17, 2011

It's sort of like a chat between friends over at the coffee shop.  You knowCoffee Cu ps  the stuff that's been going on and a look ahead.  We'll get back to business tomorrow with Insight on Business News Hour...but for now, let's visit over a hot cup of Sunday Morning Coffee.

Confirmed - Upmeyer Diddled - Iowans Lose

This week we did some digging around and found out that my BFF, State Representative Chris Hagenow, who represents me and the two other Democrats in Windsor Heights, was telling the truth.  So was House Speaker Kraig Paulsen when he sent me Linda Upmeyer a terse three word answer ("We didn't qualify.") to my question as to why the Iowa House failed to secure over $14 million in federal funding to help extend unemployment benefits for over 7,000 Iowans.  It seems, we are told, that House Majority Leader, Linda Upmeyer failed to get around to placing the Senate passed measure on the House Calendar until...AFTER Iowa no longer qualified.  Major fail and Iowans lost.  Nice going.  I can not wait until campaign season.  Or has it started?

Confirmed - I'm An Old Geezer

My backyard is a wild bird haven.  I've set up feeding stations, boughtBirdHouse  feed, feeders, have cut up apples, defrosted berries, have a heated water bowl and been reading about...birds.  It's sort of like being back on the farm...but with less manure.   It is a sign, I fear, that I have become just like great uncle Mort.  So, when my birthday came around last week one of my grand-daughters knew just what to make.  She is even responsible for the phychedelic paint job.  Thanks Jovie.

Vilsack vs. King for Congress?

Christie Vilsack This morning I was reading a piece from my friends at Bleeding Heartland and a report that former Iowa First Lady Christie Vilsack may be eyeing a congressional seat.  That is a given.  The article dismisses a report that she will run against Congressman Steve King and will instead force a primary between herself and Congressman Dave Loeback in the new 2nd District. (Iowa had five congressional districts but due to population issues lost a seat and the map had to be redrawn.)  I think the Vilsack vs. Kingrace will happen and told you that on February 20 after I visited with Mrs. Vilsach at a function in Guthrie CountyHere is that story from Sunday Morning Coffee.  She's got the right stuff to challenge King and...win.  Watch.

The Change in Roles

When our son was growing up I spent a bunch of time traveling for work.MeRulon2   I've crisscrossed the country and saw lots of things and met some interesting people along the way.  (Here's a photo of me and Rulon Gardner from our trip to Denver or Madison...when we were younger...and not needing The Biggest Loser.)  Anyway, Aaron is traveling this week to Seattle leaving his wife and daughter home for a couple of days.  I stopped and thought about that.  Don't stay too long son.  She'll be in college soon.

The Reward is $66,785

Ashley-Okland Back on April 8th Ashley Okland, a 27 year-old real estate agent for Iowa Realty, was shot and killed while working in a model home in West Des Moines.  She was buried this past week.  The West Des Moines Police, yesterday, announced the reward is now set at $66,785 up from $23,700.  That tells us that, at this point, they have a cold case and it has lots of people worried. It's something that doesn't happen in West Des Moines and it also highlights the dangers of real estate work.  If you've got information:  www.PolkCountyCrimeStoppers.org or 515-222-3344.

Guess You've Heard About...Simon?Simon

1040 WHO Radio (The Tea Party Express) has a new afternoon talker.  It's Simon from American Idol!  He gave up that posh job to travel all the way to the Midwest to do talk radio.  How cool is that?   A REAL celebrity doing work here in Des Moines!  Oh...wait. Hold on.  It's NOT THAT Simon.  It's Simon Conway, a real estate salesman from Florida, who has decided to ply his "The Sky is Falling" trade in the Heartland just like Steve Deace before him.  Expect less "Bible Thumping"...but more doom and gloom.   Note to Simon:  There are only two places in the Metro with palm trees...and I don't think either are for sale.

Got...Projects?

Now that the weather has warmed up to a balmy fifty degrees. (Some home opener for the Iowa Cubs. & Note to Simon:  Yes, 50.) it's time to check the outside project list.  YIKES!!  What the hell have I been doing all winter?  The list my bride has for me gets longer by the day.  Suspect the same with you?

Passover Starts Monday Night

Round Matzah Lots of my Christian friends have been planning for Passover.  It's a trend that has been growing over the past twenty years.  They will put some things on a plate, get some of "...them Jewish Crackers" (matzah) and have a seder sometime during the week.  I get the connection...sort of.  For those of us who will be celebrating for the entire holiday it's a "no bread...big prayer week" with lots of work getting the house spotless...and without leaven.  Today the ovens get cleaned...bigAmerican Atheists Spring 2011  time.  One more thing:  The American Atheistsare in town for their national meeting.  I'd go...but it's on Shabbat.  (Wonder where Dave Silverman, their national leader, had his Bar Mitzvah?)  Anyway, Dave gets out of cleaning this weekend.  No doubt you've seen the billboards...witty.

Finally, There Is This - McGee & Branstad

Isaiah_mcgee I know Isaiah McGee to be a nice guy.  I know Terry Branstad to be a seasoned politician.  Was Isaiah qualified to be the head of the Department of Human Rights?  I think so.  Did Governor Branstad, when the tough go going, throw Isaiah under the "Golden Bus"?  Here's an interesting read from Under the Golden Dome.  Makes you think.

With all the work ahead...gotta go!  Thanks for coming by.  If you would like to connect and keep the conversation going you can leave a comment below, follow me on Twitter @MichaelLibbie or my personal Facebook Page.  We're back tomorrow (for a short week) of Insight on Business News Hour part of the Webcast One LIVE Network.  Tomorrow it's the Metro Monday Edition with guests:  Des Moines native Marc Daniels (who has now gone international) with Weed Out Hate and Jeremiah Terhark from the new startup, DSM Daily.  I don't get to go to the Launch Party at Bombay Bicycle Club tomorrow night.  Passover you know...  Have a great Sunday!  Catch you tomorrow.

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Great Idea - Nowhere To Go

It happens nearly every week.  A person with an idea calls to pitch their new product orDoor Knocking service to us and "pick our brain" to see if we think it's valid and can make money.  We're grateful for the calls and visits because we learn so much.  Here is a short list of what we've found out:

  • The Vast Majority Have No Concept of Marketing Costs - We suspect that's why they want to visit, after all we are an advertising agency.  We're the folks who create "stuff" that entices you to buy their "stuff".  But once we get to the "Marketing/Advertising Budget" portion of the conversation people are surprised that it costs money to make money.  "Well, to make your 'thing-a-mah-jig" you have raw materials cost, right?"  It's that way in marketing your 'thing-a-mah-jig' you will have some hard costs from logos to signs to websites to....and the list can get long.
  • Website Indifference - When we discuss websites so many think all they need is an "on-line brochure".  For some...that might work.  But, when you realized that 98% of the people who shop for "stuff" go to the Internet first.  The site had best be...good.  Maybe not GREAT but...at least interesting, inviting, engaging and informative.
  • Build It & They Will Come - That works really well in Dyersville, Iowa and the movies. (Their website could use some help....)  The Field of Dreams cost....millions back in 1989.  Building a ball field in the middle of a corn field works but not without...promotion.  In this case millions.  At the very least there will be costs for your...sign.
  • Understanding the Demographic Scope - HUH?  I know.  The question we often ask is, "So, WHO will use your product/service and where are they?"  That often brings up an "Ah-Ha Moment".
  • How About That Social Media Stuff - It's great.  However so many people have taken the "bait" and believe all you need to do is open up a Facebook Page and your advertising/marketing investment is over.  What is worse, like some media outlets, they see social media as just another broadcast vehicle...which it is...not.

It's a short list...but, for the most part, it's what we hear time after time.  We're happy to help and later today (April 14) I'll share why during the Insight on Business News Hour on the Webcast One LIVE Network...  It's at Noon.

Thanks for coming by.  You can continue the conversation here with a comment, let's connect on Twitter @InsightADV, drop me an e-mail or...gulp...call.  Have a great day.

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Sunday Morning Coffee - April 10, 2011

It's like a conversation between friends at the local coffee shop.  It'sCoffee Cu ps  about the stuff we've seen and heard and some personal reflections.  It's what we would talk about if we got together over Sunday Morning Coffee.

It's Been An Odd Week

I did two things this past week that just felt...for lack of a better word...odd.  On Wednesday I went to a church to deliver something for a friend.  It was creepy.   While it's not creepy for those of you who do go to church it is creepy for a Jewish guy.  The people were nice, the place was clean.  It just felt...odd.

Late on Friday afternoon I went to a Reform Temple.  When the Board Temple DSM at my home congregation fired my rabbi and then took a fellow member to small claims court.  I quit.  I can't be around such evil.  So, since February I haven't been back to a place that I frequented every day for...years.  My friend Rabbi David Kaufman at Temple B'nai Jeshurun knew the story and has asked several times if I'd like to go to his place of worship.  I did.  It was...odd.  Nice...but so very different.  What I did find enduring was the text message and private Facebook Message I picked up Saturday Night, "Nice to see you Michael, thanks for coming." - David.  That wasn't odd...it was thoughtful.  Thank you.

Two Tales Of Crazy

Last week two people were killed in the line of duty...in Iowa.  Sheriff Deputy Eric Stein was killed while doing his job in Keokuk County, Iowa.  While lying on the ground bleeding out from a head wound he radioed his fellow officers to stay back until more help arrived.  Here is the story from the Des Moines Register.

Last week a real estate sales person, Ashley Okland was gunned down while she was in a model home in West Des Moines.  Shot twice in the middle of the afternoon, in the middle of a housing area...there are no suspects and police say there are no leads.  Here is that story, also from the Des Moines Register.   Two tales of...crazy.  Sad.

The Birds Have ItDecorah-Eagles

And, everybody seems to be talking about it.  "It" is the "Eagle Cam" in Decorah, Iowa that is trained on the pair of American Bald Eagles and their three babies hatched over the past week.  Over 30 million views have been recorded on the live, Livestream feed.  Here is the link. As many as 100,000 people are watching live at any given time.  Our friend Kyle Munson traveled to Decorah to take some photos and write this story for the Des Moines Register...neat.

Speaking of Livestream...

Cage fighting Last night Webcast One LIVE a network of several daily shows from lifestyle to business (It's the network where you can see Insight on Business News Hour with Michael Libbie, Monday - Thursday), took on something new as they featured, live, cage fighting from an arena in Des Moines.  There were a few technical issues and before another event like this is done...somebody needs to have a workable plan in place.  But, it was fun.  People from all over the country came by to watch.  Nice job....

Speaking of Webcast One LIVE

This past week we played host to the Urbandale Chamber of Commerce at our studios.  Maybe thirty people came to see what it is we do and how we get thousands to watch and listen to our various programs.  It was a neat event.  Here is a short video clip:

 

And...Then There Was This:Tiffany MPL April 2011 DM Register   

I even got my photo with the Executive Director of the Urbandale Group.  In the background you can see Len Twaroski...cheering?   It took lots and lots of begging and pleading to get this photo.  Not really...but she really is great at what she does for her communityMissouri Rest Stop 1 Thanks Tiffany. Go ahead, click on the photo to enlarge.

Missouri Knows - Rest Stops

More correctly, "Missouri Knows Rest Stop - Art".  Just over the Iowa State Line, on the west side of I-35Missouri Rest Stop 2  is a rest stop with some fantastic artwork.  It's made up of over 600,000 piece of glass tile and tells the "Missouri Story".  I found a bit more about the place from "Take BetsyWithYou" a travel blog by..."Betsy" who writes about her travels and offers up some tips.  Fun blog...

Parallel Universe

I wrote and talked about this last week after traveling to Ames to give a seminar on advertising and marketing to the American Institute of Architects - Iowa Chapter. During the event I mentioned three Des Moines startups.  They had not heard of any.  I often think I live in a parallel universe where there is so much going on but others have little to no knowledge.  So...here:

  • Dwolla - It's a company that allows you to pay for or transfer money between users for a fee of twenty-five cents per transaction.  Not a big deal if you're selling thirty $5.00 lattes in a week and you don't mind paying the two - four percent to the credit card folks.  But...if you sell 500 in a week?  Or...selling $10,000 worth of product and you take credit cards?   That...is big money....saved.
  • VineMe - Ever wonder what it might be like to see where your photos...go?  Or what "vine" you create with the people, places and things in your photos?  That's VineMe.  Fun stuff...and launched just last week.
  • FlareCaster - With over 40% of homes now using cell phonesand haveing no land-lines, 911 calls get complicated.  In an example from last week a woman from Ankeny, Iowa called 911 and the responder had to ask the address from where she was calling.   What if...you had a phone application that pinpointed your location and also sent out a text message to your family and law-enforcement...instantly when you needed help.

There you go...doing my duty and helping out.  And imagine, those are just three examples of things going on in this Parallel Universe we live in.

Biggest PR Blunder Since the Iowa Ag Protection Bill

Childtime This past week Childtime Learning Center based in Ankeny, Iowa with national headquarters in Michigan fired a 20 year employee because she did not follow policy.  Did she endanger a child?  No.  Did she steal money?  Not really.  She did allow a young child, whose mother was critically injured in a crash that also claimed the life of his brother and sister, to stay at the center for ten months...free.  It was against the company policy...but seriously?  Handled badly...  Here is the story we had this past week.

I Think I'm Making Headway - Part OneMom and Aaron

We've been trying for three years to get my Mother to move to Des Moines.  She will be 91 in June and has recently had a couple of issues.  Because she lives 15 hours away in Michigan...it's not easy to help out or be with her on a regular basis.  She's got several great-grandchildren she's never seen....it's time.  And, I just might get this done.  I know...there are thousands of you in this same boat.  Wanting to celebrate our parents independence but at the same time...  (Photo son Aaron with his Grandmother.)

I Think I'm Making Headway - Part Two

My BFF Chris Hagenow (R-Windsor Heights) found my letter from early March and responded suggesting that the Iowa Senate must have made a mistake when they passed a resolution allowing over 7,000 Iowans to have their unemployment benefits extended by accepting over $14 million in federal funds.   "We didn't qualify.", is the answer I get.   So, my follow up to Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal is,  "Why would the Iowa Senate attempt to commit fraud on the federal government by passing the resolution?"  I'll keep you in the loop.

Sun Is UP....Finally!

OK...gotta roll.  Hope you have a fantastic Sunday.  Let's keep the conversation going?  You can leave a comment here (below), follow me on Twitter - @MichaelLibbie, head to my personal Facebook Page, send me an e-mail or...come by the live show tomorrow.  Insight on Business News Hour is on at Noon Central here at Webcast One LIVE.  Have a great Sunday!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


When Policy Trumps Common Sense

This past week during the Insight on Business News Hour we had a segment on "Nine Ways to Drive Consumers to the Competition"  One of those example was to make sure your company focuses on "Policy over Satisfaction".  You know, "I'm sorry but our policy doesn't allow, blah, blah, blah."

This only works is if you are a monopoly or a government official.  Sort of the same thing.

It doesn't work so well with...child care.Man odd

Yesterday a story broke on MSNBCabout a Des Moines Area child care center called Childtime Learning Center.  It's owned by a corporate day care company out of Michigan.  The short story is Shelly Huss, the manager manager of the local Ankeny, Iowa property, who has been on the job for twenty years, asked if the facility could care for a young child who lost both of his siblings from a horrific car accident.  And whose mother was disabled.  Corporate said, "Sure, we'll care for him for a week."  The manager ignored the rule and allowed the child to stay.  Here is the full story from MSNBC and local TV - KCCI-TV8.

ChildTime LOGO Bottom line Childtime Learning Center fired Ms. Huss saying that the policy was not followed.  No matter that some good was being done.  Some of my friends feel the firing was correct.  After all she was playing with company income.  However where the break down happened long before when POLICY said...a week.

I suspect there are other day care providers in Ankeny...and I suspect Ms. Huss will find employment and parents will find alternatives to...policy.  For some iteresting reading here is the Facebook Page for Childtime.

Not a good time to...anger consumers.

Where do you sit on this one?

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"I don't have the time."

Yesterday I was visiting with a talk show host from a local radio station.Old Radio   He's a pretty hip guy but was lamenting the fact that he wanted to boost his listener numbers but had not been successful in his marketing efforts.  I asked him, "Do you do a daily blog about your show?"

"No, I just don't have the time.  But I do a weekly e-mail blast to about 400 people from my e-mail list."

Time for class.

Congratulations that he is using some form of outreach to his dedicated fans or people he knows.  But there is one small problem, if his goal is to increase listeners he...isn't.  It's the same people...over and over again.  Sure, somebody in that group might (might) forward the e-mail to one of their friends...but it does not help him get found...by others.

Man Exclaim By sitting down for thirty minutes and doing a blog post, with images, about the topic of the day.  Having links out to his sponsors and some of the background material he boosts not only his value...but now he can be found by others interested in the same topics.

And, because it's short, he is NOT writing all of his comments about the topic or topics...just a tease...people will listen and connect.  Then...if he's really into it.  He will post, on the same or an additional blog, the mp3 of the show...or at least a link back to the station so people can download the podcast and listen when they have the time.

Now he has done four major things in just a few moments:

  • Increased his value to his advertisers;
  • Increased the awareness of the topics he is passionate about;
  • Increased the chance of "findability" of his live program;
  • Given more life to his show by providing a podcast.

But...he doesn't have the time.

Here is how it's done...if you want to look.

Thanks for reading.  If you have a comment feel free to leave one below, connect on Twitter @InsightADV, get me an e-mail, head to our Facebook Page Thingy...  Or...call?

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Sunday Morning Coffee - April 3, 2011

Not much business, we'll get back to that tomorrow.  Today we'll sitCoffee Cu ps  around and visit about some of the things that went on on our world.  Often not too important...like most things...just a smattering of stories that we might talk about at the cafe or coffee shop.  And, because it's a conversation, feel free to leave me a comment below, head to Twitter @MichaelLibbie, send me an e-mail, go to my Facebook Page Thingy or, like Chris Hagenow of the Iowa Legislature...ignore me.  We'll get to that in a minute.

I Once Smoked...

I did.  At the height of my "smoking days" I might have been a "two-pack-a-day-guy".  Of course most of those burned up in the ash-tray at CoffeeMate amearetto the studio.  I didn't quit for health reasons.  It was all economics.   I walked into the gas station and said to Mick, "Give me a pack of Marlboro's."  Mick said, "Sure Lib.  That'll be forty-five cents."  Me:  "FORTY-FIVE CENTS?!?!??"  I quit that day.  Now it's the same with Coffee-Mate.  It was the same conversation...but this time with my friend Curt over at the Urbandale Hy-Vee.  Coffee-Mate in the almond flavor...yummm...is "on sale" for $2.50 a container.  Last year the sale price was $1.98.  Done.

Who Was It That Said...

"Insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result."  Some folks suggest the quote came from Albert Einstein.  My friend Matt Schultz, the current Iowa Secretary of State, seems not toMatt Schultz Flicker  think much about the quote message.  He's on a mission to get legislation passed that would require photo ID for voting.  Never mind that county auditors...the majority from his GOP affiliation...say it's not needed and would be a waste of tax dollars.  Never mind that there are no criminal records, that we could find, relating to massive voter fraud in Iowa.  Yet, Matt is traveling the state banging a well worn drum.  Matt, come back to Des Moines and do your job...you've got a really nice office and everything. (Image - Flicker - Gage Skidmore)

It Was Our Anniversary This Weekend

It's very cool.  We spent the entire day together.  Sharing stories and visiting.  Dreamlike.  I am not saying anything more because my Bride asked me not to.    

It's About JOBS!

Electrolux_logo1The Electrolux Plant in Webster City closed, for good, last week.  Five-Hundred people in that small Iowa town are without, what were, great manufacturing jobs.  The jobs went to Mexico.  Nice.  Are you doing the math?  "I'm here to create 200,000 jobs in Iowa."  But, wait!  Before we do that, Iowa needs to be fixed.  We have an oppressive anti-business climate here.  That's why Cargill purchased the idle ethanol facility in Fort Dodge.  That's why Flexsteel just announced their new $12 million corporate HQ will be built in Dubuque. (If we give them government funding first.)  Grumble...  Anyway now that workers will be paid $10 a day in Mexico I might be able to afford something made with the Electrolux brand.   NOT!

Hippies Decend on Des Moines! 

Well, not quite.  This weekend is the Natural Living Expo at the PolkRecycleMe  County Convention Center.   Thousands who are seeking something different in the way they take care of themselves, their children and the planet are gathering for two days of displays and seminars.  It's FREE...and rolls through today until 4PM.  Here is the interesting thing...the people going to the expo are off all different ages and backgrounds and economic interests...the one thing that seems to link them is pets and kids.  The concern is how to live better and protect...them.  Photo - ReCycleMeIowa

Atheists Descend on Des Moines!

American Atheists Spring 2011 Looks like we have lots of folks descending these days.  (Along with Terry, "Governor for Life" Branstad's poll numbers.)  We doubt he'll give an official welcome to the American Atheists National Convention headed this way three days after Passover starts and during the Easter WeekendDavid "I Wonder Where He Celebrated His Bar Mitzvah" Silverman president of the American Atheists, said last week on the Bradshaw Show (98.3 - WOW-FM) that it's not a slap to religion as much as it is a great time to getBradshaw Expo 2011  "cheap hotel rooms".  That might not be the same sentiment their new billboards share.  Several have sprung up in Des Moines ahead of the welcome  party.  Bother you?  Not me.

Speaking of Bradshaw...we saw him WORKING.  Yes, this is not an altered photo.   JOBS!!!!

Me?  I'm Supporting Michele Bachmann for President

I came out of the closet last Friday at the monthly gathering of the Central Iowa Bloggers.  I announced on Bachmann Twitter, and in person, my choice for president of the United States is Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann.  I have started my own exploratory committee (small but vocal).  It's "Bachman-2012 - Our Michele is hotter than your Michelle".  So far I've been able to identify one other supporter.  My good friend Justin Brady and I gave each other "knucks" and sealed the deal.  Looking forward to seeing more of "Our Michele" here in Iowa.  Whoot!

 

Make It A Crime to Report A Crime

Pig The Ag Protection Bill is still stalled in the Iowa Senate.  In case you had not heard its the latest in a string of "head scratches" coming from my friends in agriculture.  Rather than work the system...let's just make whistle blowing in Iowa a crime.   And...while we're at it...let's move the oversight of water quality out of the Department of Natural Resources and into the Iowa Department of Agriculture.  It all makes sense when you think about it.  It's...JOBS!  (Well maybe not...but that's the tag line I'm giving everything that I don't understand...it's easier that way.)

Uhm...See This?

While we in Iowa fiddle around playing nice those pesky Commies in Wisconsin have rounded up enough signatures to hold one of several re-call elections which may doom the "Governor Scott Walker Express".    And, can you believe it?  They are raising funds by asking for only $7.00! 

  

Seven Dollars!  We in the Chamber of Commerce and Farm Bureau scoff at your tiny attempt to facilitate change.  JOBS!!!

And Finally...

I thought we had a thing going.  I moved from the sprawling city of Urbandale to the tiny "village" of Windsor Heights where we're a close family of about 4,500 folks.  Neighbors who know neighbors.  We have a nifty 4th of July Parade and...everything.  In Urbandale my legislativeHagnow  friends were Brad Zaun and Scott Raecker.  I see them often at the Urbandale Chamber of Commerece events and at election time their signs dot the landscape.  So, I move to Windsor Heights where my new Iowa House Member is Chris Hagenow.  A bright young man who has my interests at heart.  Chris must need a secretary or administrative assistant to help him keep up with the 4,500 folks in "The Village" of Windsor Heights.  You see, I wrote Chris a letter nearly two weeks ago asking a simple question.  I thought he might answer by letter or by a phone call or...an e-mail.  Nothing...nada.  I'm sure I'll hear from Chris as we move closer to election season.  Must be...JOBS!!!! 

OK...that's the end of this snarky edition.  I sure am glad I don't do politics the other six days of the week.  I don't know...guess I'm just grumpy this morning.  Have a fantastic Sunday...  If you pray...no, not you David, but if you do.  Lots of things to focus on.  Stay safe...

Michael

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Video & Bloopers = Being Real

Over the years we've encouraged our clients to use more video onVideo Crew  their websites.  It makes the content more informative and opens their marketing channels to into other web areas such as YouTube. (The second largest search engine on the planet.)

Here is a video we shot in Kansas and Iowa for our client Running Horse Feeds.  The purpose here isn't to blog about a customer as much as it is to make a point.  Here is the first video:

 

Not bad...it gives an overview of the company and links them to world famous trainer Craig Cameron.

And then, there was this.  Using a Flip Cam we shot some video while we were shooting video.   We placed this on our client's web site BEFORE we posted the finished product.  Loads of views.

  

Consumers like the back-story sometimes more than the slick produced piece.  It's called being human and transparent.  Something to keep in mind when you're planning your next marketing adventure?

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Want to continue the conversation?  @MichaelLibbie or @InsightADV on Twitter - Here is our company Facebook Thingy, send me an e-mail or leave a comment below.  Thanks for coming by.