What kind of marketing is the most effective?

sneezr.ca Have you ever asked yourself that question? I did. In fact, many years ago I spent countless hours trying to figure it out.
The answer turned out to be quite simple: word of mouth marketing. Or as I call it: the art of cultivating recommendations.

Surprised? Probably not. With recommendations, there is no sales pressure and no credibility issues. When your friends, family members or trusted co-workers recommend something or someone to you, they are genuinely trying to help you. That means a lot, which is why you usually remember it for a long time. But here is the catch: recommendations must be earned. How do you do that? Where do you start? How do you give people a reason to talk about your products/services? How do you nudge your story into every day conversations? I launched sneezr.ca to help you answer those questions.

What can Jose Mourinho teach us about business

Soccer is the most popular sport in the world. (Soccer is called football in some countries.) You probably knew that already. But can you name the most successful soccer/football club of the 20th century? The answer is: Real Madrid Club de Fútbol (Royal Madrid Football Club), commonly known as Real Madrid (and in Spain’s soccer/football circles simply as el Madrid or el Real). Real Madrid was voted by FIFA (the official site of the international governing body of football with news, national associations, competitions, results, etc.) as the most successful club of the 20th century. I didn’t want to list all of their records here for two reasons: 1. This post is really not about Real Madrid (you can visit their website for details); 2. It’s a long list :-). continue reading

What can Dick Fosbury teach us about business

A flop

A short story by Paul Arden (from his book titled Whatever you think, think the opposite)

“Until the Mexico Olympics of 1968 the customary way for a high jumper to cross the bar was with his body parallel to it, in a technique known as the Western Roll. But that was about to change. continue reading

What can George Clooney teach us about business

In the movie Up in the Air (I highly recommend it), in addition to his day job, George Clooney’s character is a motivational speaker that often gives a talk called, “What’s In Your Backpack?” He talks about how each of us is carrying around a metaphorical backpack that contains all of our possessions and commitments. With time, our backpacks get heavier and heavier until they are so filled with “stuff” that it is nearly impossible to move. continue reading

What can Tony Hsieh teach us about business

“How can I know the truth?” When it comes to marketing, how often is this question on your mind? I mean, you probably come across new marketing ideas, strategies and tactics every day. The short answer to the question with which I opened this post is: The truth needs to be experienced. The second best answer to the same question in my opinion is to intuitively perceive truth by learning through experience of others. (A concept similar to Biomimicry* – see below.)  This is why I tell stories about people who have achieved success in marketing. continue reading

What can Yann Martel teach us about marketing

I recently finished reading Yann Martel’s latest novel titled Beatrice & Virgil. (For those less familiar with Martel’s work, he is the award-winning author of four previous books. His second novel, Life of Pi, won the 2002 Man Booker, among other prizes. He lives in Saskatoon.) continue reading

Delivering happiness via word of mouth

One of the websites I often visit is techcrunch.com. The website was founded back in 2005 as a weblog dedicated to obsessively reviewing new Internet products/companies, but they also profile existing companies that are making an impact (commercial and/or cultural) on the new web space. continue reading

What can Jason Fried teach us about marketing

Jason Fried is co-founder of 37signals, a Chicago-based software firm, and co-author of the book Rework, which was published in March. He also writes a column for Inc. Magazine. (I really enjoy Jason’s writing style.) continue reading

What can Gatorade teach us about marketing

Ever heard of the brand called Stokley-Van Camp? According to Wikipedia, the brand originated in 1861 in the Indianapolis grocery store of Gilbert and Hester Van Camp, who canned fruits and vegetables for their own shop. The same source states that Van Camp’s son Frank is credited with the development of the modern canned pork and beans recipe and went on to found Van Camp Seafood. continue reading

What can Isadore Sharp teach us about business

Who is Isadore Sharp? He is the founder and CEO of the Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts, the largest group of five-star hotels in the world. Sharp started the company in 1961, and has used many innovations to attract employees and customers from around the world. continue reading