What Part of No Do You Not Understand

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The whole thing actually,

That’s why I enjoy sales. It’s also why friends and family sometimes get annoyed when I treat life like it’s one giant business transaction. It’s not intentional just one of my “things”. My quirks.

I have a few reactions when it comes to hearing the word.

Confusion and shock: at my old job I was put in a management position. I have no clue what my bosses were thinking when they did that but that is another story for another day… anyways I asked someone to help me load our marketing supplies in the car. He told me no and I started laughing because I thought he was joking. He wasn’t. I was so confused with hearing that come out of his mouth I walked away. It still floors me when I think about it.

Anger: obviously whoever is telling me no is a moron and doesn’t understand that I’m always right.

My favorite reaction by fair is the one I had 3 weeks ago. I had a sense of calm and glee as I think to myself “Challenge Accepted”

That’s why here are Broken Box Culture we don’t think outside the box. We already broke the box.

Those of you who are gangster know that there is no box. There never was a box. There never will be a box. The box is a self-imposed mind game you put on yourself. Why, then, would we choose to create a road block that doesn’t actually exist in order to find a way to work around it?

Why create an unnecessary no? That’s a great question. There is no box. There never was, and there never will be.

What part of no do you understand?

HeroMachine, create your own Superhero…or Supervillain…

download (2)Actually did this and it was pretty fun!

glxAnAm

HeroMachine.com is a site where you can create your own superhero/supervillain even if you can’t draw a single line…

in HeroMachine, you are free to imagine, free to combine, and free to save your superhero/supervillain…

There’s a lot of  item that you can use to create your own superhero/supervillain…

Here’s some example:

Go ahead and make your own superhero/supervillain…

the link: http://www.heromachine.com/heromachine-3-lab/

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That’s Why I Quit School, Because of Recess. I Don’t Play!

One of my best friends uses that line religiously, when she feels like her sales and marketing skills are tested. She’s good and she knows it. While she doesn’t expect for you to bow down at her feet she does expect some common courtesy.

I’m not so modest.

There’s a certain calm confidence that athletes have. Long after the last touch down has been thrown or the last 3 point shot has hit the net, that confidence stays with you. It’s helpful in sales and marketing. In any facet of life, if you think about it.

I’ve spent years arguing with managers and owners of companies I used to work for about my interpretation of ‘Casual Friday’ sometimes my rebellion was soft-spoken and sometimes passion heated my tone.

Here I am in my 30’s and I’m a freelance marketing consultant. If I had to give one reason I took this path, it isn’t a noble reason. It’s not even logical. I’m motivated by sweat pants and comfort. Always have and always will be the type of woman who would rather be in sweats with my hair in a ponytail.

If you tow your company party line I’m sure you’re shaking your head and thinking to yourself, that it’s not professional. To that I say two things.

First is that if I’m meeting with a new client, I make sure to wear my good sweats. The ones with the pockets… or something that resembles business casual. Whatever. The second thing I say is this: If I’m pitching a client an idea or product and the focus is my clothing, then I do believe I’m in the wrong business, because I’m not doing my job.

I’ve got tattoos everywhere, piercings, and sometimes random hair colors. Yes I understand there’s judgement that comes with it, but that’s where the athletes confidence kicks in. It’s just one more challenge to overcome to make my case. It’s all sales anyways.

So for that I take the hard time I’m given with the grace of someone comfortable in their choice to chuck the professional attire.

However, this afternoon I took it personally.

I was on my way to meet with my editor when he cancelled. I decided to stop by a friend’s office since I was in the area. Low and behold is an advertising sales rep. Apparently there was some sort of open pitch/interview thing going on today. She made a snarky comment, as only a female can about my sweats. In my defense these are the ones with the pockets. I explain I’m here simply to socialize and tell her good luck with her pitch and I get more mean girl vibes my way.

Never one to give into a bully I listen to her pitch. I start to nod off through her pitch. I watch the owner of this company emailing away not paying attention to a thing she is saying. He’s not even looking at her fancy suit. I hear her explain the only way to drive traffic to his company’s website is to pay for it.

WTF kind of bold-faced lies are you telling your customers lady? This is why future clients and customers instinctively dislike those of us in the sales and marketing arena. Now if she had been a little nicer in the beginning I would have waited until she had finished and pulled the owner aside.

She hadn’t been nice and I rarely am anyways so I  interrupted her monologue of bullshit with some free options to drive traffic to his website. One of the suggestions was an informational blog about the industry he’s in on a platform such as WordPress and explained how that would be useful.

20 minutes later she’s walking away in her fancy stilettos and I’m going over my fees and rates with my Etnies propped up on his desk.

Sure I expect some skepticism when I’m doing a frat house version of casual Friday. I don’t expect the rude comments and judgement about how I dress, when the one casting judgement has less than ethical sales tactics. Do you know what else?

That’s why I quit school, because of recess. I don’t play…

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Slightly in Seattle

Just a taste of the fun editing that can be done to photos once you start getting the hang of photoshop. It’s amazing how photographs can be manipulation to suit a want or need. Makes you think twice before blindly believing everything you see, doesn’t it?

Before

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After

After playing with photo editing

 

Before

I-5 North

 

After

Same I-5 North

Cheap Tricks

17 Cheap or Free Marketing Ideas

How can you get your business noticed? And, what’s more important in these tough economic times, how can you get noticed without breaking your budget?

In this economy, you need all the help you can get to ensure that your business is noticed amid all the noise. Marketing is key, but which approach to take? The first thing that may pop into your mind is to send out e-mail blasts or hire a consultant. While these are good ideas, everyone’s already doing the first, and the latter can be pricey. Besides, there are lots of things you can do on your own that are cheap or free.

So get creative! Use the Web and other resources at hand to try to rise above the fray.

Increase visibility in your community.
Join local organizations that provide business networking opportunities, or start your own. Do volunteer work for a large charity. You’d be surprised at the marketing support such activities can bring.

Participate in online marketing groups.
Search Twitter and other social-networking sites for groups meeting to discuss marketing. For example, Understanding Marketing holds a chat and Q&A session on Twitter that focuses on small-business marketing. It’s live each Tuesday from 8 to 9 p.m. eastern time. Search #smbiz on Tweetgrid.com.

Submit information to blogs.
Blog writers are always looking for content for their sites. Target appropriate ones and send them press releases or descriptive e-mails.

Reward existing customers. 
Offer an exclusive incentive to your regular customers—only your regular customers. Notify them via e-mail or other contact methods, and direct them to an otherwise inaccessible page on your Web site where the offer appears.

Get your customers to bring in new customers. 
Offer an incentive like a discount to customers who get a new customer to make a transaction with your business.

Spruce up your Web site.
Stale sites don’t attract business. Fresh, frequently updated Web sites show your customers you’re a vibrant and active business. Let users subscribe to get update notices, then update frequently.

Provide free, helpful information to your customers. 
Such content should be related to your type of business and can include tips, hints, reviews, and other information that can help drive sales. For example, a business selling paint can provide a guide to selecting the best paint for different uses. Such informative content is often available from suppliers. Use it.

Offer your noncompeting business customers a link exchange. 
A link exchange is much like a bulletin board at your business that holds your customers’ business cards. The more links your business has to its Web site, the better your search engine placement, and the greater the number of people who see your business’s links, the more will visit you.

Use downtime for marketing. 
When times are slow, keep employees busy contacting customers. Create e-mail marketing documents your employees can send to individual customers. Personal contact with customers gets results. Mass e-mails are less effective and, given today’s e-mail spam filters, may not be seen by many. Go for quality contacts rather than quantity.

Visit your own Web site frequently.
Look for ways it can be improved. Too often, small business Web sites load slowly, are poorly organized, and are difficult to navigate. Fix bottlenecks that impede customers and look for ways to get customers to act. Make sure all links work and lead to up-to-date content. Test campaigns with printable coupons and other incentives. For more tips, see our story “Build a Better Web Site.”

Get active in the online community.
Encourage employees to do the same. Don’t spam discussion forums or other social sites, but don’t be afraid to use signature lines containing links to your Web site. Establish common-sense rules for yourself and your employees regarding these social-networking and discussion sites, and always strive to be positive and helpful on them.

Check out your suppliers’ Web sites thoroughly. 
Add links on your site to informative and helpful content on those sites. Many corporate sites offer instructional videos and other material that can inform your customers and lead them back to you, ready to do business.

Get a toll-free phone number.
It makes you look more professional and encourages business—and the fees aren’t as high as you might think.

Launch a blog on your site and update it daily.
Nothing reads “I don’t care” like a blog whose most recent entry is days old. Assign this task to employees who can write and spell—an illiterate blog is worse than no blog at all. Introduce people to your company and its staff. Highlight products. Run contests and give away company swag. Announce specials and upcoming product-line changes. Establish a “customer-of-the-month” tradition and do regular write-ups. Surely there’s something you can say to your customers daily.

Yes, use Facebook and Twitter.
Having a Facebook page may not earn you any new business, but not having one may cause customers to ask why you don’t. Take some good pictures of your offices and your employees (unless you’d rather leave those details to your customers’ imaginations), or, in some fashion, put a more human face on your company identity. Twitter is a young technology, and everyone’s scrambling to figure out useful applications. In the meantime, let your customers at least follow you, and implement a strategy similar to what you’re using in your blog. In 140 characters, that is.

Visit online marketing sites.
Good Marketing Ideas is an excellent site, with plenty of useful tips. The suggestions here cost little or nothing to implement, and will likely lead you to resources you might never have thought of on your own.

Never surrender.
Getting new and potential customers to notice you is an ongoing—and sometimes uphill—battle, and one you can’t ever stop fighting. Pick a new idea every week or two and implement it, no matter how small it is. Call a meeting of employees, order a pizza for lunch, and brainstorm; offer an incentive for ideas you implement. Before long, your marketing might just pay off in new sales—and happier, more involved customers.


Equal Rights

I am truly free only when all human beings, men and women, are equally free. The freedom of other men, far from negating or limiting my freedom, is, on the contrary, its necessary premise and confirmation.
– Mikhail Bakunin

Broken Box Culture