I read something interesting at the gym last week in Seth Godin’s latest book, Linchpin.

Artists don’t think outside the box, because outside the box there’s a vacuum.

Finding an effective positioning for your business won’t come from thinking outside the box. It will come from re-imagining the box you are in, the market where you compete. [Read more...]

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surfing mouseWith most products and services competing in largely parity landscapes, the relationship a brand, product or service has with its customers is often its only competitive differentiation. Said another way, businesses with strong customer relationships usually lead their categories. That’s because the economics of relationship marketing are compelling; there are five sources of revenue from loyal customers, so the positive impact of customer loyalty compounds and puts you ahead of your competition.

So, if a relationship marketing strategy is key, the question becomes, “How do I do it?” [Read more...]


While traveling to LA last week, I had an experience with Thrifty Rent a Car that was an opportunity missed, an opportunity for them to demonstrate that customers are important.

So what happened? Nothing exceptional, really, just a routine transaction that, if handled differently could have, at no cost to Thrifty, begun the shift from Thrifty being a product with a name to a brand with which I have more than a transactional relationship.

I have a history of back issues, which are exasperated by flying and driving rental cars. Going to LA requires both but mostly driving, lots and lots of driving. This may appear to be a tangent but be patient, I’ll circle back here shortly. [Read more...]