March 30: Logos are International

You do not need to speak English to recognize these logos:

  • Apple
  • Taco Bell
  • Chrysler
  • Microsoft
  • The Olympics
Since real logos are pictures, they are international by their nature. So if you ever intend to have a global reach, build a brand around a pictorial logo.

Is your branding and logo ready to go global?

March 29: Use a Logo

Logos allow you to connect with people on another level. Your logo should be a visual representation of your business that people react to on an emotional right brain way. If your logo is a font, you do not have a logo. Unique fonts are great and complement to your logo, but they are not your logo.

How well does your logo represent your company?

March 28: Turn Your Blog into a Book

Blogs are a great way to accumulate and organize content. If you can post a handful of juicy morsels a few times a week, by the end of the year you will have enough information for a book, or as some call it a blook. You gotta know I'm turnin' this biz memes puppy into a book as soon as the year is up.

How could you turn your blog into a book?

March 27: Write an Outline

Not everyone is an author, but it can be easier than you think. If you can write an outline you are halfway there. Can you come up with 7 or 8 key principles to share with customers about your business? You have an outline. All you have to do is put some detail and explanation to these and you have yourself a book- presto!

What are some key principles for your business? How could you share these with customers? Why not write a book?

March 26: Write a Book

A good way to establish yourself as an expert to your customers is to write a book. Some people spend time promoting their book and get some business on the side from it. Another angle is to use your book as an expensive business card. Give it out to customers and prospects. They are more likely to keep it and think more highly of you when you give them a book instead of a flimsy card.

What could you write a book about?

March 25: Design is More than Making Things Look Pretty

I hear it all the time when it comes to web design "we'll make the site and then the designers can make it look pretty." Good design is more than just making things look pretty. Good design is creating websites, and products, made for human beings.

Sure looking good is a part of appealing to people, but it goes way beyond that. The iPod is more than just pretty, it was designed to work well. The scroll wheel of the original and the touch pad interface of the iPhone are examples of great design in action.

Do you have great designers working for you?

March 24: Don't Put Welcome on Your Home Page

Welcome to my blog! Could you think of anything cheesier I could put at the top of this page? Besides looking like 1999, no one reads a welcome message. Find something more important to put in the prime real estate usually devoted to these sad vestiges of web design past.

Do you have Welcome on your home page?

March 21: Squash the Rumor Mill

There is an inverse relationship between the rumor mill and intentional information flow from management. If you are not giving your people good information to make decisions, they will find other ways to inform themselves. This means they will rely on rumor and innuendo to fill in the blanks.

I worked at an organization where one of the directors was terminated suddenly. Even though I was on the management team, I was given no explanation. I started to ask questions about what had happened to this gentleman. The stories I heard were of lascivious affairs and misconduct. Whether or not that was true, I still don't know.

If you want people to make good decisions then provide them with as much information as possible. If you feel like your people can't be trusted with sensitive data then you have the wrong people working for you. And their imaginations are always worse than anything you can tell them.

What is stronger in you company, the rumor mill or factual information flow?

March 20: Promote Features and Benefits

Most marketers know they need to communicate what their product does, but not necessarily why that's a good thing. Don't expect your customers to know why your features are beneficial. For example:

Feature:
Biz Memes is a blog with short little ideas

Benefit:
It's a quick way to boost you business thinking without spending a lot of time

You may know why your product's features are beneficial, but you may need to fill in the blanks for your busy customers.

What are the benefits of your features?

March 19: Colors Matter

What do you when you come to a red light? How about when you come to a stop sign? What do these items have in common...they're both red. Green means go, white means purity, black means death. Colors have meaning.

I created my own business card for my training company, DaehnTrain, and went with Blue and Yellow. I picked those because I like the Blues, not because I understand colors. When I had a designer do my card he came back with brown, green and purple. I was not happy. I am too manly for purple, right? I trusted his understanding of color and found that people loved the new logo and card.

People understand and react to colors on an emotional level whether they realize it or not. Make sure you are taking advantage of what colors communicate in your promotions. If you are not, be sure to hook up with a good designer that can help you make powerful choices.

What color are you? What colors best represent your business?

March 18: Play for the Name on the Front of Your Jersey

There's an old saying in hockey: play for the name on the front of your jersey, not the name on the back. In other words, play for your team's success, not your own.

Hockey is a team sport. Individuals can only win when they make their team better. The best hockey player of all time, Wayne Gretzky, made his teammates great. He had more than twice as many assists as goals.

The same goes for business. If you are always out to make yourself look good, you may hinder your team, and probably look like a jerk in the process. I know I do better at work when I focus on making others successful rather than how I am going to get the credit.

Even if you work for yourself, the best thing you can do is to make your customers look good. Business is a team sport.

How can you play the game to help others win?

March 17: Play the Game, Not the Scoreboard

When a hockey team is up by a few goals it is easy to get complacent. The best teams know they have to keep skating full speed, regardless of the score, or they give their opponent a toe hold to get back in the game.

The best companies stay fresh and never let up. The ones that do get caught off guard by a wily start up or disruptive technology. Make sure you keep playing full speed.

Are you complacent in your business? Are you the veteran hanging on or the rookie trying to earn a spot?

March 16: Have a Clear Job Description

Lay out what people are supposed to be doing before they start work. If you do not have a clear goal in mind of what you want people to do, it is likely you will not get the results you want. By putting them down on paper you have something to discuss and clarify.

Realize that jobs often change over time and that the description may need to change with it. If you have people currently working that do not have job descriptions, have them write one for their job and you write one too. Then compare and contrast your versions, it may surprise you.

What is your job description? What are the descriptions of the people you work with?

March 14: Manage by Walking Around

Have you ever heard the expression to manage by walking around? How could walking around make a difference?

  • You talk to the people who are doing the hands on work
  • You make your self approachable
  • You get a feel for the climate and culture of your organization
  • You can look people in the eye and reprimand or encourage them
  • Your butt looks slimmer because you are not sitting at your desk all day
What could you accomplish be walking around your business?

March 11: Take Celebrity Photos

Whenever possible I get a photo with a celebrity holding up one of my books. Of course my celebrities consist of fans, customers and people that like my book. I couldn't be happier. In my world they are more important than some drunken Hollywood starlet.

Who are your celebrities? Do you have any pictures? Where could you display them?