Small Business Failure...Who Is Responsible?
The Problem With Having "A Friend in the Business"

Sunday Morning Coffee - September 27

Sunday Morning Coffee is a weekly look back and ahead.  For those of you expecting

Coffee Cu ps

information, news and discussion about advertising, marketing and consumer trends…we’ll maybe just a little.  Sunday morning is the time to reflect on what we’ve accomplished and look forward to see what is in the “tea leaves”.  So, grab a cup of JOE and let’s visit…

Iowa and Hollywood – For those of you not living in the Hawkeye State you  may not be aware of the “Tax Credit” issue that has shut down the fledgling film industry here.   So far the flap has cost the jobs of the Economic Development Director as well as the one person department overseeing the millions in tax credits going to film producers.  Governor Culver ended the program last week when it was discovered some producers were buying fancy cars with Iowa Tax Credits.  He said, “Iowa’s will not be taken for suckers.“  Might be too late.  How the tax credits work (or don’t) is in this article  by John Carlson from the Des Moines Register.   It’s a little harsh…but good reading and it explains how “Big Business” was going to benefit.   Bring down the curtain?  We think not…we’ll see.

MPL New studio

Our “radio experiment” continues to roll on.  On Friday of this past week we logged over 19,000 listeners to Des Moines Local…LIVE.  The programing is gaining traction with over 40 radio hosts doing more local, live radio than all the other radio broadcast facilities in the city…combined.  Every word that comes out over Des Moines Local…LIVE is original with no paid or bartered programs.  It’s becomming very real…very quickly.  So much so…that a group of people have been hired to start selling advertising.   Stay tuned, this is starting to get serious...

Twitter Opps

From the “Corporate Said We Need To ‘get into’ Social Media Department“  comes this interesting photo outside of an Amici Espresso coffee house in downtown Des Moines.  Note to manager, “We’d love to follow you but we’re not sure of your ‘handle’.  A little help here? ”   As my friend, Andrew B. Clark

The Brand Chef noted, “At least they are ‘into’ social media.”  By the way, I stopped into the shop and asked what their "handle" was and they said, "Opps, forgot that huh?  It's @AmiciEspresso."  Ahmm...not. Gotta love it.

Early this month a 79 year old retired county employee turned himself in to authorities.  He is suspected of hitting and killing a bicyclist and then fleeing from the scene and hiding for over a week.  He is out of jail pending “the investigation”.  Meanwhile two brothers who drove off from a gas station (they were stealing $20 worth of fuel) struck and killed a career military man driving his motorcycle home from work.  These two thugs are sitting in jail with hefty bails.   I’m not connecting the logic here…both were “accidents” right?  Both “accidents” resulted in the death of another person.  Might it be that we just don’t take the killing of cyclists seriously?   Help me out?

Here is a “news flash”:  Iowan’s don’t trust politicians when it comes to the health care debate.  Both sided have demonized the other so harshly that, according to a recent Iowa Poll, 61% of  the public feels “frustrated” or “angry” and a whopping 83% say they think lawmakers are not being truthful about what they are actually considering.  From “Death Panels” to “Public Option” both sides are just plain scaring people.  Outcome = Nothing.   The insurance industry, that by the way has never healed anybody…wins!   No change.   Write it down on a calendar someplace because it’s over.

On our radio show last week I spoke about the failure of most trade organizations and chambers and professional organizations when it comes to teaching small business how to survive in the digital age.  I have become convinced that those of us who “get it” when it comes to small businesses marketing and selling on-line are in the minority.  Meanwhile the organizations that small business belongs to is doing little to nothing to educate their members on how to break through the fog of e-commerce and on-line marketing.  They are too busy raising dues, cutting ribbons and “networking” at “after hours” functions.  It’s easier than really working on a major issue.  And if the leadership of these groups and the boards of these groups don’t “get it” why should the professional staff bust their collective butts?    It’s an amazing story nobody is following…in my ever so humble opinion.

Steve Farber MPL

My new friend, Steve Farber was in town last week pushing his new book, Greater Than Yourself.  (When you go to his site, and do that…click on the video.  Nice.)  It’s a piece about how business people can, one at a time, change the world by giving without expectation of receiving.   He got me to thinking about those people who have invested their time and talent in me and my career.  I wrote about it last week….and it’s a great concept.  So…who gave you a hand and a boost?  Who invested in you and are you returning the favor?  Something to not only think about…but actually do.

Our four-year old grand-daughter, Sailor, was all excited last week.  She and her parents were headed out to the Savannah Savages high school football game.  Mom and Dad both graduated from the school and Sailor couldn’t wait to go cheer on the “Savannah Sandwiches“.   Oh to be a kid again!

Our offices are closed tomorrow (Monday) and I’ll have a guest host on “Insight on Business”.  We’ll be back in the office on Tuesday and start the week off with Mike Wagner from the White Rabbit Group as our first guest.  On Wednesday it’s Janis Robinson (Come by and we’ll figure out what a “Life Coach” does.) and on Friday Sean Skeehan from Farm Crawl 2009 will be with us.   Never forget our rural roots!

Thanks for coming by for coffee.  You can keep up with us on Twitter – @MichaelLibbieor @InsightADV