Saturday, February 28, 2009

21st Century profits from marketing

How does someone market in this day? Stores are closing, radio stations are losing listeners to satellite and Internet radio. Newspapers are closing or in Chapter 11.


I’ve said it before, but the best way to market today is volunteering your staff. Get them involved in the community. Find the organization community leaders volunteer in.


In Phoenix, today it would be United Way. Twenty years ago it was the Salvation Army and before that it was the Fiesta Bowl. Think creatively in your community about where it will be tomorrow.

A public opinion survey I did almost 30 years ago is still true today. People get their messages from television news and advertising. Today you must add MySpace and YouTube, something I was told I was crazy for offering as advice three years ago.


“Any new theory is first attacked as absurd," said author William James. "Then it is admitted to be true but obviously insignificant. Finally, it is seen to be so important that its adversaries claim that they, themselves, have discovered it.” Is that why PR practitioners are using my method of measuring results – which is 20 years old and archaic – claiming they created it when it is a PR textbook case study? Watch for marketing, advertising and PR practitioners to start calling themselves marketing sociologists.


For years I’ve advocated YouTube and MySpace, now add Twitter. Check http://tweenmarketing.blogspot.com/


It is confusing what the top blogs are, too. I would say TMZ, New York Times, and similar publications. Technorati consistently lists the liberal agenda Huffington Post. Does Technorati have an agenda? I’ve looked at Huffington Post several times, but it is guilty of what newspapers are doing – trying to be everything to everyone. Look at any newspaper web site (Associated Press style, please) and you will see it looks like one of those paintings where an artist just throws paint on a canvas. They’re trying to be too much to everyone. That’s why I enjoy TMZ; it is in blog format, something I’m used to.


In another search, I found these top blogs:

1 film izle
dvd izle, film izle, sinema izle, yabanc─▒ film, film seyret, internetten film izle, online sinema, indirmeden film izle, online film izle, sinema filmi izle


2 Hadise
Sarki sozleri ve muzik dunyasindan hadiseler


3 Thai Songs
Music Video and Lyrics of Thai Songs and The Greatest Hits Thai Songs , Update New Song Every Week


If you’re looking to advertise online, I’d stick with the tried and true – email accounts like Yahoo, gmail, AOL. There is too much discrepancy about what are the top blogs or web sites.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Goodbye Rocky Mountain News

For a time this tabloid was the most popular paper in Denver/Front Range. Former Denver Post writer and 2000 Pulitzer Prize winner Pete Chronis made this statement the morning of the News’ final edition, “It’s a death in the family.”


In 2008, more than 200 reporters/editors were let go from the Arizona Republic and East Valley Tribune. On Feb. 20, 2008, the Albuquerque Tribune closed after 86 years. That’s longer than the USSR existed. The Rocky Mountain News was two months shy of being 150 years old.


That makes at least 600 experienced journalists looking for jobs in the Rocky Mountain region.


Yet employers are still hiring the “fresh” person, usually right out of college. Even worse, they are using slave labor and giving it the term “internship.” A Phoenix PR firm uses a “training program” – “The Trainees are the backbone of our organization and embody everything we believe in.” Yet the agency charges its clients $180 per hour while the trainees are paid nothing – and are terminated at the end of the one year training program. “We receive seven to 10 resumes a week and there are 20 spots in the Training Program at any time. It's been more than three years, so you do the math.” I have and it’s called indentured. Any ”client” idiot enough to use this agency…


What happens to those 600 journalists with families to support, including paying rising college tuition? $240 per week unemployment doesn’t go far.


What college professors want you to believe is “when the economy turns around” these journalists will be in demand and flee ship. That’s why employers should hire THEIR graduates rather than 600 journalist now flipping burgers. Right now colleges are the same as bank management – a scam looking for government bailouts. There are few jobs. We’re in a depression. Where are all these college graduates going to get work?


Comments by public relations professors like Bill Sledzik of Kent State don’t fly. “Newly minted grads who display a strong work ethic can pay for themselves quickly. They work hard, and they work for a third of what the seasoned MBA expect to be paid. Yes, I know a lot of the unemployed folks will work for less, but when the economy comes around they’ll be out the door. Employers know that.” Employers should know the journalist is used to coming to work every day and won’t call in sick every Friday or Monday and will not quit in six months, nor will they be backstabbers as the “fresh” public relations practitioners have been in my experience.


Monday, February 23, 2009

It's official - economy has bottomed out

For those who have their money and/or retirement in a mutual fund, more than likely you’ve lost half your money in the past year-and-a-half (even more when you figure inflation). Don’t take my word for it, check this Feb. 23, 2009 story:

By TIM PARADIS, AP Business Writer

“The Dow Jones industrial average tumbled 251 points to its lowest close since Oct. 28, 1997


“According to preliminary calculations, the Dow dropped 250.89, or 3.41 percent, to 7,114.78. It last closed this low on Oct. 28, 1997 when it finished at 6,971.32. The Dow hasn't traded below the 7,000 mark since October 1997.”


Admittedly, I have several mutual funds because you don’t put all your eggs in one basket. My mid-cap is doing well. If you need to know what a “mid-cap” is, call a broker and remember they’re called “broker” for a reason. Ask them where they invest their money – surprise, they don’t or it’s in tobacco and liquids – in other words wine and cigarettes. If you’re a “broker” right now, you need those. Or you could spend a couple hours a week educating yourself.


I wish I could say I’m all wise and created all this information myself. Go back to the previous paragraph. If you want to keep your money, you educate yourself.


Wish I was as wise as chartingstocks.net. The first day of 2007, it had a blog “The Coming Stock Market Crash of 2007.” Pretty accurate prophecy of what has been going on the past two years.


Oct. 9, 2007 baby-boomers and fools leaped for joy. Dow went over 14,000. In 1984, I remember watching it with the son of the owner of Crow Publishing. We were betting on 2,000, which it hit in 1985. Wonder if it will hit that level again this year? The good thing if it does, homes averaged $75,000 that year and interest rates were at 15 percent. If you purchased one of those $225,000 or higher average priced homes, not so good for you.


Now for today’s lesson: Where the economy is going.


You find wisdom everywhere if you look for it. This past weekend I was freaking out because gold is near or over $1,000. I remember when owning gold became legal and it was like $250 an ounce. To have gold at $1,000 was surely the death knoll for the U.S. dollar, I thought. Until I spoke to a customer service rep at Godaddy.com.


This wise expert, probably making $13 per hour compared to those million-dollars a year stock brokers you consult, wisely said, “What about the other precious metals?” Wise, wise, wise!


Looking at silver, it is down about a third of where it was a year ago, but double what it was five years ago – a good indicator that I will explain in a moment.


A look at platinum reveals it is down 250 percent from a year ago, at about the same price it was five years ago. Another good indicator.


Then you look at gold. It is higher than it was when gas was nearly $5 a gallon (which I predicted in a summer, 2007 story in the Arizona Republic). Looking at the five year history for gold bullion, you see it is up 250%.


These precious metals tell a story. Silver and platinum are indicators that the depression has bottomed out and now would be an EXCELLENT time to do your homework and find some worthy investments – I recommend real estate.


The rise in gold tells me something else. The fool investors who drove up home and stock market prices to a level beyond their value have been listening to those “buy gold” pitches on the radio.


The economy isn’t about to fall – only for those fools who rush from one trend invesmentt to another, purchase SUVs and Krispy Kreme donuts and think In-n-Out burgers are any different than McDonald’s or Burger King . These fools are driving up gold prices and will get burned like they did in both the stock market and buying those rental homes to flip. Good luck on that. It doesn’t work. It's okay, though. The taxpayer will be there again to pay for these investors' stupidity.


Do your homework and invest wisely. Listen to those lowly customer service peons you want to ignore. They’re probably smarter than you. I KNOW they’re smarter than me.

Quota hiring contributing to depression

Feb. 2009 – As the 21st Century depression deepens; we must look at its origination. A major reason is how companies hire. Instead of seeking the best and brightest without concern for age, gender or race, employers worry about quotas. Employers aren’t looking for creative people who will develop greater revenue streams. It’s all about quotas and possible law suits.


96% of all public relations positions in Phoenix are held by females, more than 80% of those under 40 and almost all Caucasian (this includes Hispanic or whatever label you wish to apply to those of Latin American ancestry).


Women comprised 54% of the workforce in 2005, yet because of Equal Employment Opportunity laws, they enjoy a minority status while unemployment for black males under 25 stands in excess of 30% (this group comprises less than 15% of the workforce). Female-owned businesses enjoy preference in government contracts. If you study EEOC law suits, it usually involves female issues versus employers. Normally not race or age, just female gender, not male. EEOC has an agenda – and it is contributing to the current depression.


Five years before Bluetooth became available, Dave Robinson, director of marketing for SOL Communications, at age 55, predicted cell phones would evolve to an earpiece and possibly a button to talk into; close to Bluetooth in his prediction.


The marketing team of this same company, in its strategic planning, prognosticated the housing bubble burst for 2003 – five years before it actually happened.


When SOL was sold in 2001, the day George W. Bush was inaugurated, Robinson had trouble finding a position in another organization due to his age – something EEOC normally doesn’t pursue because of their female issues agenda. So employers weren’t lining up to take advantage of Robinson’s brilliance; instead hiring females who were fully protected by EEOC. Think of the money these companies missed pursuing quotas rather than brilliance. This is why we’re in a depression.


Here are other ideas companies are missing. Imagine as you approached a billboard, an audio announcement supplementing the billboard blares from your cell phone. As you pass, you receive a text message, perhaps a coupon, to reinforce the billboard.


Why are grocery stores so large with lots of items filling shelves? Why not when you take an item, another item pops up on the shelf? Or you press a button and it is at the checkout counter, packed in bags, and all you need do is pay for it. Sort of like Circuit City did when they were in business. Think of the savings grocery stores would enjoy in space costs if these ideas were implemented.


There are many great ideas employers are missing due to their hiring bias. There is a Native American ready to create great profits for some organization, an 18-year old in Chicago of African-American heritage with the next Internet protocol, a 60-year old public relations practitioner who has worked for some of largest papers in the nation who can bring results rather than an organization hiring that 30-year old female who isn’t doing much each day and calls in sick most Mondays or Fridays.