About Jerry Fletcher

Jerry is the CEO of Z-axis Marketing, Inc. which he founded in 1990. He is an expert at business development and has changed the way the way new business is acquired and introduced on three continents. He is known to meet with clients in dining rooms and boardrooms. He stopped counting successful introductions of new products at 207.

Brand is Bias, Big Time

Nothing controls how you feel about things, right?

Guess again.

Decisions are not logical

Right down there in the bottom of your brain in the part called the amygdala is where all your emotions slosh around to make the decisions you can’t believe you made. As much as we wish the economists were right, humans do not make logical decisions. We decide based on feelings and then attempt to rationalize what we’ve done.

Bad ass biases

Is there something under those emotions that pushes us one direction or another?

You bet. It is called bias. All of us have them. Some are so accepted that we rarely notice them.

Smell      I’ve read that smell is the most primitive of our senses, the one most directly linked to our unwitting biases. Ever noticed how the smell of a bakery can lure you into the store? Does the smell of fresh mown grass make you think of a picnic by the lake? It’s hard to imagine being in the lobby of a movie theater without smelling fresh popped popcorn. Right?

Sight  We are a visual culture. Color alone can create a bias. It can have different meanings in different cultures. Red, in the west means stop or danger. But in China it is the color of life celebration worn on New Years, weddings and funerals. Yellow is a joyous color except in France, where yellow signifies jealously, betrayal, weakness, and contradiction. Blue holds more connotations than any other color around the world extending from depression to elation. Green is generally associated with earth, plants and new life. But be careful. In some South American cultures it is the color of death. Purple, early on, was a symbol of wealth but as the dye was more readily available it came to have other meanings. Now it is the color for funerals is common across Europe and South America.

Be sure the colors you use have the meaning you want in the culture where the brand will be sold. A bias against the color you choose could torpedo your product introduction.

Sound  it is easy to think that songs sung in English using western instrumentation and notation are the world standard. As ubiquitous as that sort of music is, it is not all that is out there. There is still tremendous pride and emotional linkage to native approaches around the world. And that power is possible to put to work for a brand. Think about how often melodies crafted in Vienna in another century set the mood for a perfume or high-end jewelry. Can you resist the rhythms of dance from Celtic to Flamenco to Argentine Tango?

The sound of a child crying gets attention in every culture. Even in the backwater of the third world, the sound of a jet taking off, a car being started or a soft drink pour are recognized. The sound that is familiar and fits with your brand can help build the bias you want.

Touch  this sense is the first to develop in the human fetus. Differences in the perception of touch around the globe are a minefield but gestures and body positions that do not involve touch can be just as dangerous. Have a native of the culture check touching, gesturing or body positions in every photo, video or other visual representation you intend to use.

In Korea, the touch of a woman’s skin is how great beauty is described. Each culture describes skin and the results of skin treatments differently Can you use the terms the natives are biased toward?

Taste There are some common denominators and some that can be found mystifying. Most of us can sense sweet, salty, sour, bitter, hot and cold. But what is described as good or tasty, delicious or disgusting is completely variable by culture.

Do not even think of taking a food product from one country to another without first checking with specialists in the target company. Chees is not big on China’s idea of great imports. Hamburgers will not go over with the general populace of India.

Bias goes beyond the senses.

All of us use biases to explain why we like a specific brand. The experience we have with the organization that sells it may generate the bias we call preference. Starbucks is a good example of a bias like that. A brand that gives us a rationale for being part of a group that uses it can turn fandom into fantastic profits. Examples include Porsche, Rolex, Apple and Canondale.

We can be biased toward any product that solves the problem we have If it meets our resolution criteria and understands the emotions we feel about a solution. What brand comes to mind for you?


Jerry at Cafe in Venice

Jerry at a cafe along a canal in Venice.

­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­Jerry Fletcher is a sought-after International Speaker, a beBee ambassador, founder and Grand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Trust-based Brand development, Positioning and business development for independent professionals on and off-line.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com

Trust, Brand and How to Get There

Brand is based on perceptions.

The greatest of these is trust.

If there is no trust, there is no positive brand. (Video Link) BUT there can be negative brand. Seldom if ever does a brand exist that is trusted by 100% of the populace. Even within the target audience for the product or service there will always be some that don’t get the message. There will be group that is not on board for many reasons chief of those being a negative experience.

Consider the current approval ratings of the Trump administration. More importantly, consider the desperate straits of leadership in the departments of the federal government where A and B list candidates are scorning appointments and refusing to serve.

When less than 50% of the population trusts you, you have a brand problem.

Trust and consequently Brand are dynamic.

Trust can change as quickly as new information becomes available and in today’s world that is just a tweet away. It doesn’t matter who tweets as we have seen over and over since Trump took office.

More importantly Brand can be impacted by any information presented to the audience whether it is “fair and balanced” or more blatant false news. The problem is that the same information causes diametrically opposed reactions depending on which part of the audience you poll. The level of Trust can shift just by which side presents the information.

Trust and Brand are situation specific

Either side, with privileged information, might have an advantage over the other. New information can reverse the situation. Sometimes the data can overlap. Whatever the truth may be, when the populace is divided and polarized the two sides will both claim victory and cite their perception of brand as righteous.

Even when one side is forced to retract their actions they will continue to claim their deeds were justified. Look at the comments that followed a judge’s ruling that the children of families seeking asylum here in the USA had to be returned to their parents.

Even the Trump oriented news organizations rightfully called it a backlash. What they aren’t mentioning is the backlash about treating asylum seekers as criminals. The most descriptive phrase for that is “anti-American.”

Trust and Brand are social or relational constructs.

That means that win or lose you have to play the game. If one side or the other refuse to engage the game is over. Only one brand will continue. If one side does not stand up for what it believes the other will slowly become dominant. Both sides need to be heard. Both need to listen. And both need to consider their actions as well as their words.

Trump advocates continue to say, “He’s doing what he said he would do.” That is true. How he is doing it is another matter. That is not going unnoticed. His loyalty to long term associates is being called into question now daily. Breeches of long-term American values are being noticed by everyone.

Getting to Trust and Brand is based on maintaining certain attributes over time.

The most important part of those components is credibility. People have to believe that your word is your bond. They want to believe they can believe you. To establish credibility you have to be real. you have to be trustworthy. And you need to be the same over time.

But being those things are dependent on how the audience perceives you. Right now, there are friends and neighbors of yours that will say that the current man in office meets all these qualifications. He is authentic. There are few if any like him. But he is not consistent. He is anything but. And when it comes to integrity, I would rather be his enemy than his friend. In short, I cannot trust him and for me that generates a negative brand.

Trust generates positive Brand.

You will have a Brand whether you want one or not.

A negative Brand will spawn terrorists that will do everything in their power to bring you and your organization/government/business down.

Yes, you can have a positive Brand and that will pay you dividends.

Positive Brand advocates will stay with you through the tough times refusing to buy in to another product or service or ideology. They will stay with you until you can match or beat the opposition as long as you don’t betray their Trust.

What is your stand on Trust and Brand?


Jerry Fletcher is a sought-after International Speaker, a beBee ambassador, founder and Grand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Trust-based Brand development, Positioning and business development for independent professionals on and off-line.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com

 

Peeling the Brand Power Onion


It’s difficult for some folks to develop the hook, the instant brand, in their 30-Second Marketing approach.

It ain’t easy being green.

Today, a client described getting to 30-Second Marketing as “peeling the onion.” Like so many he has difficulty in finding his way into the mindset of his ideal client/customer. Achieving a level of empathy gets more difficult the further you are separated in terms of gender, color or culture. “It ain’t easy being green” is the way Kermit the Frog summed it up

My way or the highway

Often a CEO or President has become so entrenched in her/his way of thinking that they assume everyone thinks like they do. They believe that prospects don’t have the problem they state if it doesn’t match their perception.

If you can’t see the problem as a prospect sees it your solutions will be invalid. It could be you, Mr. or Ms. CEO on the highway instead of the other way around.

Pareto’s 80/20 rule was right

In developing 30-Second Marketing with clients over the last 20 years I’ve found that successful independent contractors find that about 80% of those who hire them report the same problem. Yes, they have other problems but in the target population there are only two others that creep up in importance. Neither is as important as the first.

The secret is to use their words

Listen. How do they describe the problem? Is there a single word that gets at the heart of it? How do they go on about what is bothering them? If something is truly bothering them the deeper you go the more you hear the despair. They start with frustration and wind up somewhere around hopeless. Your job is to capture the words they use because those words are the ones that will touch their emotions. Decisions are made and action taken based on emotion. Sure, you might rationalize it later but the emotional trigger is the one you need to get to.

Let ‘em off the hook

Have a client look back on why they hired you. Emotions will come out that didn’t before the engagement.  Emotions you’ll hear: Fear, Anger, Sadness, Disgust, Surprise. Compare what they say now to other’s comments. Look for the pattern Frustration can be substituted for anger. Frequently, in lawsuits folks want a “Pit Bull” because they don’t want to be surprised. . If you identify an emotionally loaded word as the real problem, you may have to be cognizant of their feelings and instead of using the word refer to “some people” or “others”  when describing the situation.

Don’t try to impress me with 50-cent words.

You won’t. And you won’t convince or persuade your prospect either. To be successful, your brand must be presented in words a 5-year-old can understand. Keep it simple. Instead of describing yourself as a Digital Device Technician try being a member of the “Geek Squad.” Become the CPA who says he is ‘Captain Crunch.” Describe yourself as the Networking Ninja and have people remember you for years. The secret is to use their words.

If you are a scientist, dumb it down for me. If you are a lawyer, do not obfuscate. If you use language that is part and parcel of a lexicon shared by only a small fraternity of people, get real. The more difficult it is to understand what you do the less successful you will be. It really is that simple.

Here are the kind of results you can expect when you peel the brand power onion:

  • Defogger and Accelerator Management Consultant. Doubled his revenue.
  • We take the paper out of water testing Founder. Sold the company for north of Five Million dollars
  • The Untangler Money coach. Tripled successful client intakes after each speech.

Jerry Fletcher Keynote in ColombiaJerry Fletcher, Networking Ninja, is a sought after International Speaker, beBee ambassador, founder and Brand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Trust-based Brand development, Positioning and Business Development on and off-line.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com

Marketing: The Edge to Late Entry

I’m running late today. Usually my Saturday morning posts are in your e-mail box by 3:00 AM

Not today.

Gone but not forgotten

Yesterday, the Toys R Us stores across the USA closed.

At its height it had 1,690 locations around the world. Ownership of the stores changed hands multiple times but it dominated toy sales pushing out smaller, local toy stores wherever it opened.

Toys R Us first lost is market dominance to Walmart in 1998. It struggled unsuccessfully to maintain, it’s position. The last time it had an annual profit was 2013.

The lesson learned

Smaller toy stores simply could not match the variety, volume and pricing of the larger Toys R Us that used the big box strategy to build an iconic brand. Big box based companies can easily supplant a single category competitor. You can have a competitive edge when you are late into the market but that edge needs to be honed continually.

Tilting toward the internet of things

Looked into Best Buy lately? Just about any electronic gadget you need can be found on their shelves including a lot of the items that qualify for the soubriquet: Internet Of Things. The sales force is being trained to understand buyers versus final users and to optimize their Geek Squad brand for completing the sale.

I heard through the grapevine that their Geek Squad has been trained in installing and servicing scads of new household gadgets. More importantly, they are being trained in how to deal with seniors.

The moral of the story

Someone in the marketing department has realized where the biggest market for these digital goodies is, how they get sold and the skills required to build a trusted brand. A friend tells me that a sensor that detects whether an aging relative is in bed, accessible across the net, is sold to a son or daughter as a way to check in on Mom or Dad. It is one of the items the Geek Squad is ready to install! Staying on top of market shifts can extend the life of your organization even if you are late to the party.

Better late than never

I spent most of the last week doing an inventory. A couple new Strategic Partnerships caused me to dust off productizing plans for the intellectual property I’ve developed over the years as a consultant and professional speaker.

My partners and I have looked at the offerings for independent professionals and small businesses and found them generally wanting. Most are rehashes with little or no relevant statistical support. Proven processes, tips and techniques are hard to come by.

The edge to late entry

Marketing Without Money TM products we deliver (learn more) will be thoroughly tested and adapted to the life style of the owners of professional practices and small business. What that means is that they will be available in Video, Audio and PDFs. It will be a subscription service with small cohorts. Regular webinars that are heavy on Q&A will highlight program keys and provide bonus materials. The programs will be continuously refined with new additions available to all subscribers.


Jerry Fletcher ThinkinigJerry Fletcher, Networking Ninja, is a sought after International Speaker, beBee ambassador, founder and Brand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Trust-based Brand development, Positioning and Business Development on and off-line.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com

 

 

Brand is a Matter of Time

In an instant.

You can brand yourself, a product or service in an instant. That’s true, but only when you are making first contact. When you are not known by that contact you can be whatever you decide to be. Your product or service can be positioned so that is clear and presents you memorably.  That’s the “hook” in 30 Second Marketing.

For a short time

After the conversation engendered by your “hook” which gives you a chance to explain the problem you solve for about 80% of the folks you work with, the “Hold” and how you, your product or service is different from others in the market, the “Pitch” they will remember what you told them if it is relevant to them.

Or it could be “Sticky Time”

Deliver your Hook, Hold and Pitch believably and they will remember for themselves, Keep you in mind as a referral and literally come back to you years later. I’ve been speaking as the Networking Ninja since 1993. People that saw me as much as 20 years ago still seek me out.

Ripple time

It is like dropping a pebble into a pool of water. The ripples move out from the center and engage with someone. If that person buys in it sets up another set of ripples that keep expanding.

Bunch time

Every brand starts with just one advocate. That one refers you, your product or service to the next and the next until you have small bunch of fans. For some, that small bunch is all that is needed to be successful. For others it is the beginning of a tribe. Still others need a nation to stay in business.

Fallout happens. Our clients or customers will turn over in time. Their loyalty is a matter of how well their needs are met. You need to look at these items to be sure you are on the right track:

  1. frequency of purchase /Loyalty–average length of engagement
  2. Referrals over time to maintain the business
  3. Compensation Method and LTV (Life Time Value of each client/customer

Counting down to Success

Too often, independent professionals bill hourly. Product oriented companies think only of single sales and service organizations think in terms of projects. Here are some direct comparisons using LTV as the key decision point drawn from my files:

Item       Frequency         Loyalty         Referrals              Payment              LTV

Product  1-time               Product Life        0                        $20                         $20

Product  1-time               Product Life         0                       $20
with refills 10 x /year       $5 per time                                   $50                         $70

Service 1-time project    1 to 3 months      5-10% will refer $2500                    $2500

Service on
retainer   Annual Renewal  Avg 3 years     up to 20%           $1000/mo            $36000

Intellectual
Property  1-time               Product Life        up to 10%           $150                    $150

Intellectual  Subscription  Avg 1 year         up to 10%            $150/mo             $1800
Property

Intellectual   Retainer +    Avg 1 year          up to 10%           $1000/mo
Property      Subscription  Avg 1 year                                     $150/mo            $13800                                                  

What time is your brand operating on?


Jerry at Cafe in Venice

Jerry at a cafe along a canal in Venice.

Jerry Fletcher, Networking Ninja, is a sought after International Speaker, beBee ambassador, founder and Brand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Trust-based Brand development, Positioning and Business Development on and off-line.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com

The Value of Brand

The Lion was cowardly, the tin man lacked a heart and the scarecrow had no brain. Each of them sing about their lacks in the musical. The song I recall is that of the scarecrow titled, “If I only had brain…”

Businesses need courage, heart and the brains to have a brand. I hear that song as “if I only had a brand…” Having a brand is essential.

The negative aspect

Is there some way to measure what a brand is worth? Here’s a glimpse at what you don’t get if you don’t have one:

  • Without a brand, people have no easy way to remember you
  • Without a brand prospects will have difficulty assessing your value
  • Without a brand prospective clients or customers cannot focus on how you can change them
  • Without a brand you will never impress a buyer before you meet.
  • Without a brand your credibility will not be accelerated
  • Without a brand the perception of quality you deliver will flounder
  • Without a brand the value of your intellectual property and your name are not realized.

The positive viewpoint

On the other hand if you have a brand then all the benefits of those possibilities accrue.

Memorability

The right name linked to a mission everyone working in the company understands and buys into will lead to a position that is drawn from the lexicon of the prospect and, over time, a well-known and easily remembered brand.

Value

We ascribe higher value to products, companies and individuals that look like they are what we are looking for. Generally, something expensive is packaged expensively. Usually the best items have the highest prices. If only the wealthy have it, the value is assumed to be higher than a similar product offered at a lower price point.

Change

People don’t but products or services. They buy solutions to their problems, answers that make them look good and ways to change the world. If they are trying to figure out what you have to offer they can’t understand how you are going to help them alter themselves, look good doing it and have the energy and commitment to put a new spin on the globe.

Friends

One of the beauties of brand is that it precedes you so that opinions are forged, reinforced and you or your product or service are all perceived as worthy of being a friend before you come through the door, website or webinar. A positive brand is more likely to be purchased more quickly.

Credibility

You will have a brand whether you like it or not. But a positive brand will give you authority, believability and most importantly trustworthiness. They don’t have to like you or even know you to trust you enough to buy from you. A brand can put you on the fast track.

Quality

It’s all about perception. You, your product or service is what people think you are. You can’t control what they think. You can, at best influence it. The quality you deliver becomes a major part of your brand.  Your brand reflects every interaction your clients or customers have with you. All of them.

Your IP and your Name

If you want to sell your processes, approaches and methodologies you gotta have a brand. If your techniques or technologies are going to bring you income you don’t have to slave for you must have a brand. Most importantly, if you are an independent professional or entrepreneur that works solo or leads a small cadre your name must be part of your brand.

If I only had a brand…


Jerry Fletcher, Networking Ninja, is a
sought after International Speaker,
beBee Ambassador, founder and Brand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Trust-based Brand development, that builds businesses, careers and lives of joy on and off-line.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com

Trust in Brand and Business Today

Two Measures of Trust
It is the time of year when two different organization publish the results of their research on Trust:

  • The Edelman Trust Barometer
  • Reader’s Digest Trusted Brand Survey

And if you’re googling the topic you may see The Alignable Most Trusted Small Business Brands where only 3 of the top 20 are not digital products but do rely heavily on digital implementation.

An International Look
Edelman has been doing and annual survey since 2000. Each year they query thousands of people around the world regarding the level of trust they have in NGOs, Government, Business and Media.

The study this year, conducted primarily on line, encompassed 28 countries and included 33,000+ respondents.

The polarization of Trust noted in 2017 is not abating.

  • 20 of 28 markets now distrust their institutions
  • Institutional Trust dropped 37 points year to year in the USA
  • In the US, government is considered the “most broken”
  • Worldwide, nearly 7 in 10 worry about false information or fake news being used as a weapon
  • Trust in media platforms continues to decline while trust in journalism has rebounded

Voices of Authority
One bright note is that people perceived to be authorities are regaining their credibility. “People like me” which for a time led the way have plummeted in the rankings. (my guess it that fake information and fake news is taking its toll and that reviews that are inaccurate are steadily undermining them).

Those with Trust Rankings over 50% in order now are: Technical Expert, Academic Expert, Financial Industry Analyst, Successful Entrepreneur.

The survey makes it clear that business is expected to lead the way back to trust.  Borrowing a phrase from Ford, For CEOs Trust is job one. The key mandates for business are:

  • Safeguard Privacy
  • Drive Economic Prosperity
  • Provide jobs and training

Trusted Brands
The brands we trust in the USA are surveyed by all sorts of organizations annually. There are reports on just about any category you can think of.  I like the Reader’s Digest study because it is a pleasant walk through the average American household and you learn a little about where the product originated. Here is a bakers dozen from this year:

  1. Weber Grills
  2. Nestle Bottled Water
  3. Tylenol
  4. Kellogg’ Cereals
  5. Silk (Milk alternatives)
  6. Tetley Tea
  7. Clif Nutrition Bars
  8. Coppertone
  9. Purina pet food
  10. Lysol
  11. Toyota
  12. Scotts lawn care
  13. Nike

Who do you trust?


Jerry Fletcher, Networking Ninja,
is a sought after International Speaker,
beBee ambassador, founder and Brand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Trust-based Brand development, Positioning and Business Development on and off-line.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com

 

The Calendar of Brand

Times change.

Brands need to change with them.

At least the trappings of your promotion and advertising should. Too often we seem to get stuck in a time warp. Just because it is another decade in the program your commercial is scheduled to run in is not a reason to look like that era.

It’s similar if you’re trying to appeal to today’s audience and not come off stupid. Beware of being too trendy. That graphiti background is fine for the coasts but it screams “not from here” in the midlands. Too much “hot lingo” can backfire with both the target you are aiming for as well as the rest of the audience that is not quite up to the minute yet.

Everybody is not a valid statistic.

When the person presenting that original commercial storyboard or radio commercial or web site utters the word “Everybody” you need to beware. Examples:

  • Everybody has a smart phone these days. (over 75% in the USA but only 37% worldwide according to PEW research)
  • Everybody bets on televised sports (Statista says 13%)
  • Everybody knows video gets more digital shoppers (But mobile is 3x of desktop viewers.)

Being in sync is not a perfect science.

The better you know your primary customer the more your appeals can be honed. What if you have the perfect solution for those folks that don’t currently have a smart phone? Should you be looking to sell to people that don’t own a mobile phone or would you be better off going after the folks that haven’t upgraded to a smart phone?

Building a commercial whether it is radio or TV or both that relies on bettors language and actions is going ot fail to reach north of 85% of the audience. Why would you do that? And be careful of the “Big Game syndrome” that usually is presented as the one that gets the biggest audience of the season or year or week. Look hard at the statistics.

Video isn’t vaporware but it is close.

Too often video is presented as a band aid for a sucking chest wound. A single video will not save you. Video needs to be part of a considered strategy that is based on how digital shoppers operate in your market. Multiple videos will serve you better than one that runs continuously.

If you put videos on your web site they should start on customer command, not automatically. You have to stay committed, changing out video options and building in Calls to Action (CTAs) that allow the potential customer to get more information. That commitment goes to building videos that meet the criteria sought by your perfect clients. The wrong videos or those couched in the wrong  terms, visually or verbally, will result in negative click through.

How important is Season, Month or Holiday?

We all know that sales events linked to the calendar pay off.

Or do we?

Twenty percent of annual retail sales occur during the holiday season (Thanksgiving to New years). That means that 80% do not. Knowing the right season, month or other days to chase that business is a good idea.

You need to know what used to work and calculate how the recent trends might be impacting the situation. For instance, there was a time that catalogs were most impressive in terms of sales in the period between Christmas and New Years. Is that still true? How much has online retail changed or added to that phenomenon? The same goes for all the other holidays.

What’s on your calendar?

Jerry Fletcher Keynote in ColombiaJerry Fletcher is a sought-after International Speaker and the founder and Grand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Brand development, Positioning and Business Development on and off-line for independent professionals.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com

 

Building Your Business One Speech at a Time.


Jim’s done it. Manoj’s partners do it. It is a regular part of Shell’s marketing.

A target rich environment.

What could be better than getting in front of a group of people that can buy your products or services and are committed to listen to what you have to say?  Think about how hard you work just to get the ear of one.  Consider the time it takes you to convert just one lead.

It’s worthless if you don’t know what you are doing.

You can turn all those folks Into terrorists that want to destroy you and your business if you’re not careful.  You can offend, aggravate and otherwise piss them off by trying to sell them your product or service. Don’t do that.

Jeremiah learned what works.

Early on when he introduced his software to his industry he worked a booth in the trade shows in neighboring states. He learned that most folks that were running family businesses like he grew up in were not looking for digital solutions to the problems that had been around since, as he put it, “I was axle high on the tractor.”

Those early days were tough times. He and his partner were stoked when people would just talk to them. People wanted to know how this new technology might fit into a tough schedule in an industry that had never had any penetration by electronic devices. None.

He was asked to speak at an upcoming trade show.

He knew if he tried to sell people would walk out on him and he would never be asked to speak again. He knew how back-breaking the work could be for both the testers and the folks back in the office. He knew because he had done it.

He knew that he had a solution that would work for the testers, the folks in the office and the utilities they had to report to. He was an engineer after all and comfortable coding answers to the things folks in the field needed.

He told his story of living in two worlds.

He began by talking about how he and his sister used to sit at the kitchen table figuring out his Dad’s route for the next day and filling in as much of the paperwork as possible. Then he spoke of being trained in the field, doing the work as their second tester and virtually doubling the family income.

He told them how his family put part of that money away so he could go to college where he graduated as an engineer, went home and rejoined the family business and began applying what he had learned.

He uses the familiar smart phone to show people the future.

  • Jeremiah shows them how an app that was part of his software works like GPS to plot the most efficient route for them
  • Jeremiah shows them how they could record all their measurements on the phone.
  • Jeremiah demonstrates how all the data on a client could be e-mailed to the office so they aren’t always a day behind.
  • Jeremiah shows them how the billing can be done electronically on the spot.
  • Jeremiah makes sure they know he and his people would be there to help them from the start to the finish.
  • Jeremiah soothes their concerns about the coming digital wave by being a man of both worlds.

He speaks with candor, understanding and concern. He has become the expert the industry turns to.

He is building his company one speech at a time.

He is scheduled to speak all across the country in the coming year.


Jerry FletcherJerry Fletcher, Networking Ninja, is a sought after International Speaker, beBee ambassador, founder and Grand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Trust-based Brand development, Positioning and Business Development on and off-line.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com

 

The Lunch Bunch Brand

Those of you who have been reading my blogs for a while know about the “Lunch Bunch.”

I’ll introduce them again so that you don’t have to rely on memory and so those that are making their acquaintance for the first time are a little less confused.

The Dialogue Blog

I was looking for a different format. The ones known to work based on the analytics, chief among them readers responding to a call to action, were my guidelines but I wanted something different. The format that appealed to me was based on detective short stories by Isaac Asimov and Spider Robinson, both science fiction writers.

They shifted the finding of a solution to a group gathered together over a meal to respond to a guest’s mystery. Asimov placed them at dinner with a waiter who solved the case after the others had blithered over it. Robinson varied it by story allowing just about anyone in his cast of zanies to be the one or two that “figured it out.”

I’ve been away from this rowdy crowd too long. Visitors to the lunches often were generated by folks asking questions after I delivered a presentation. I’ll be relaying to you the groups  sassy but sure advice once again as I go back to speaking professionally and the questions mount up.

The avatars of a brand.

It has been many moons since I celebrated working with this crew. Each of them is based on a real-life expert. Most of them are physically close to the descriptions offered. Okay, a couple of them are way different. But all of them exhibit the mental acuity you would hope to have in this kind of gathering.

The Core group:

Rick, is a swarthy Jewish outdoorsman comfortable in a kayak or on a Ducati who moved to Oregon to indulge those interests. He is our master of direct marketing and one of the few people I have ever met that is a natural at networking. He can meet someone in a rental car line and the next week be presenting to their Fortune 500 company.

Kate, our dusky mistress of sales earned her spurs the old-fashioned way—cold calling floor by floor in downtown business-packed high rises. She has the chops to go on sales calls with newbies and tell a CEO when the Sales VP has been over-promoted. Tough lady. Now retired but always up for lunch with this bunch

 

Bubba, Rob to some of us, is a slow drawl southern talking older gentleman that at times claims to be “Dumber than a bag o’ rocks” BUT (there is always a BUT) he has a genius for the psychological alchemy known as brand. The real Bubba presides as the creative director of an Ad Agency in Atlanta.

 

Chris is third generation Chinese American now the proud young father of a boy and a girl. He is an entrepreneur that has made his way through the wild west of the internet doing web sites, seo and you name it for the last ten years. He has just founded an on-line business that scales and now can give up the part-time consulting gigs that supported his entrepreneurial habit.

 

Gail, is a woman who has told me she teaches people to think because they must learn that skill before they can write. She is always a writer but has ridden that talent far and wide running an ad agency and as an on-air talent as well as a freelancer and consultant. Her quiet grandmotherly demeanor veils a strength built from dignity and laughter facing life without fear.

Jerry FletcherMe, the ringleader. Yes. All these folks exist. No they don’t gather each week except in my mind. Their views, expressed in these dialogue blogs are usually their own sometimes shaded by the filter of my digitizing them.

Cameos, from time to time another professional joins the group when our visitor/client has a problem that falls in the expert’s bailiwick: PR, Customer Service, Distribution, etc.

Here are some of the previous Lunch Bunch Blogs you might enjoy:

http://jerryfletcher.net/2017/05/deja-vu-testing-for-on-line-success/

http://jerryfletcher.net/2017/03/positioning-versus-branding-2/

http://jerryfletcher.net/2016/01/brand-aint-digital/

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Jerry FletcherJerry Fletcher, Networking Ninja, is a sought after International Speaker, beBee ambassador, founder and Brand Poobah of www.BrandBrainTrust.com

His consulting practice, founded in 1990, is known for Trust-based Brand development, Positioning and Business Development on and off-line.

Consulting: www.JerryFletcher.com
Speaking: www.NetworkingNinja.com