Right Things Right

inbound marketing expert philadelphia One of my favorite sayings is “There is a right way and a wrong way to do business”. It’s a personal motto, always reminding me to conduct myself in a professional manner that will reflect positively on me and my business. I usually whip this one out immediately after I see an example of the wrong.

And I thought I’d seen it all….

I went online today to look for a death notice of a former co-worker. The listing showed all of the requisite information about the deceased. But where there is usually a photograph, there was a QR Code. Being the geek that I am, I scanned the code and was immediately taken to the funeral home website, not more information about the deceased. Don’t get me wrong… I don’t begrudge this business the right to advertise. Funeral homes routinely list information at the bottom of a death notice.

I go to websites about 100 times a day, and that’s probably a conservative number. Each time I’m looking for information, and most times I see advertising that I can ignore or pursue. I’ve never seen advertising placed in such a deceitful manner. It’s just wrong, and it leaves you feeling a bit icky.

Marketers must take control to ensure their message is not out of place, and mistakes can happen. I’ve seen a few examples of rotating banner ads placed on news sites that have raised a few eyebrows…. like fast food restaurants on a news page reporting a famine in Africa. Always be aware of what is scheduled in the future, making sure to make adjustments if an event occurs. Everyone remembers the Aurora Mall store tweeting about a sale the day following the shootings… not callous, just careless.

The last two examples are mistakes, but someone made a conscious decision to promote a business within an obituary. You have to wonder what was going through the head of the person who decided that QR Code was a clever idea. It’s just not right, on so many levels.

Think. Review. Edit. This post originally included a screen shot of the aforementioned obituary, but I decided that it wasn’t appropriate to include that person’s info. I’m constantly editing myself for many reasons, mostly to make sure I’m accurate and professional.

Back to that motto of mine… The company I work for has taken my already simple mantra and stripped it down. To be fair, they didn’t know they were doing that! We have the standard, small paragraph mission statement that references the company’s two core values… “Do The Right Thing. Do Things Right.” It’s a simple, but powerful concept.

Learn it, live it… love it.

– JL


About the Author

John Langan Philadelhia MarketerJohn Langan is currently Business Services Director at the Penn Emblem Company, but has worn many hats in his thirty plus years in the corporate identification business… from screen printer to graphic artist to customer service to marketing director. He brings focused and unique perspective to B2B communications, helping people achieve success marketing products, services, and themselves. Learn more here: http://gr8johnl.wordpress.com/about/

Email is Essential to Your Online Marketing Success

Anybody who’s been around me lately knows how passionate I’ve become about the critical importance of an email component to the success of every aspect of their online marketing strategy.

That’s right. Every aspect of their online marketing strategy. That means your Facebook and Twitter strategies too.

You can have the most engaged, vibrant, happening Facebook and Twitter communities in your neighborhood or market space, but to get the most benefit from the community you’ve built, you need to be gathering email addresses so your business can provide valuable information and exclusive deals to the community via regular email communication — the #1 way content is shared.

Where do people share.But, I can hear everybody now saying how sick to death they are getting emailed and spammed until their inbox is overflowing. I feel ya, and agree 100%, but remember, if your email list is built on a solid, opt-in philosophy, the people receiving your email are choosing to do so. At least until you bore them, annoy them, or become irrelevant in the context of their needs. Take another peek at the data in the graphic above. The data don’t lie, no matter how you personally feel about getting emails.

So assume for a minute that I’m right, and you agree that it’s time to integrate an email communication component to your online marketing strategy. Where do you start?

1. Start by implementing internal processes to capture email addresses from your current customers. This is called “building your [email] list”, and should become part of the DNA of all your customer-facing and market-facing activities.

Getting customer emails should be as simple as asking them for it. Come up with a script and train your staff how to ask customers for their email addresses without being pushy or intrusive. Be sure to tell customers that you’re planning to email them valuable information, updates, and exclusive opportunities to save money.

AWeber, Constant Contact, MailChimp

2. Sign up for an email marketing service like, Constant Contact, AWeber or MailChimp. These tools are tremendously easy to use and infinitely more cost effective than mailing printed marketing materials through the US Postal Service. We’re a Constant Contact Solutions Provider, so you can click here to sign up for a 60 day free trial.

Once you compile your initial email list and upload it into an email marketing tool, you’re ready to launch your first campaign, which I’ll talk about in my next blog post.

But a word of caution before I sign off.

It’s against the law to email someone without their explicit permission, or, lacking an existing business relationship. Emailing someone without their permission is the very definition of Spam, and will get your account shut down by every third party email marketing service.

This means you cannot purchase an email list just to jump start the process. It’s illegal, unethical, and just plain bad business.

So, start gathering your customers email addresses, sign up for a third party email marketing service, and stay tuned for the next step in creating your email marketing strategy, and growing your business like never before.

Constant Contact Solutions Provider

Here’s Why You Should Attend The Social Business Future Conference

The irony of the Social Business Future Conference is in the name – because the Future is now.

Social Business Future

With tracks for Executive Leadership, Human Resources, Marketing, Education, Community Food & Farming and Small Business, this professional development opportunity provides forward-thinking business people with the unique ability to attend a social media workshop designed to address the specific needs of the hat you wear every day.

If you attend the Marketing track, Cari Sultanik and I will give you the information you need to begin aligning the right social media tools and tactics with your existing marketing strategy.

If you’re wondering why your company should try social media, we’ll show you the results other businesses are getting.

If you’re struggling to get results from your social media effort, we’ll deconstruct your strategy during the second half of the agenda and offer battle-tested adjustments that will get you moving in the right direction.

Do you want to own the one square mile around your shop, or is your target market the whole Delaware Valley, or all fifty of the United States? We’ll show you how you can add a social media component to your current budget that will serve these objectives effectively, with complete traceability, repeatability, and undeniable metrics.

The Social Business Future is not a one-and-done conference where you’ll be handed the golden keys to all things social media, although at times, it will certainly feel that way.

It’s one mile marker in the long journey that is part of being a professional marketer. Chuck Hall’s SoMeBizLife Conference combined with the Social Business Future Conference, give Delaware Valley marketing pros a tremendous professional development value, while connecting you to colleagues from a wide variety of local businesses in a forum where open discussion and sharing of challenges and solutions help everyone achieve the kinds breakthroughs we hope for when attending off-sites like this.

You’ll have the unique opportunity to have an in-depth conversation about your company’s individual needs and challenges so you can walk out of there with actionable knowledge that will absolutely benefit your marketing objectives immediately.

If you’re the one responsible for connecting your company’s message with your company’s customers, you need to attend.

If you’re the one responsible for listening to customer feedback so your company can develop the new products and services your customers want, you need to attend.

If you’re the one responsible for understanding your company’s competitive landscape, you need to attend.

If you’re the one responsible for ensuring that your company is getting the most bang for its marketing buck, you need to attend.

I’ve been to many, many social media conferences. Some were better than others. Some I go to all the time, some I no longer attend. I know the difference between networking and working, and so, if you are within a one hour drive of this conference, you need to attend. It’s going to be that good.

And don’t miss the informal networking event immediately following. You never know where you’re going to meet your next great hire or learn about something that helps your life and your business.

I look forward to enjoying a productive day of work with you at The Social Business Future Conference, Friday, November 9th at Delaware Valley College in Doylestown, PA.

Click here to register: The Social Business Conference.

Click here to listen to a discussion about the conference, with Jen Phillips April, John Langan, Rick Toone, Chuck Hall and me.

— Don

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