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Is Your Marketing Budget Working Smarter, Not Harder?

“I want to work smarter, not harder in 2012,” a friend resolved at an annual New Years Day party where guests reflect on the past year and state intentions for the new one.

Working smarter often involves working harder at first, but not harder on the same old stuff. Working smarter means putting systems in place that conserve time, energy and money. But that work often means asking hard questions. Otherwise we would set up resource-saving systems more often!

Which brings me to marketing budgets. It’s easy to squander time and money, two equally valuable assets. Read more

To Know Where You’re Going, Know Who You’re Walking Towards

It is always easier to do than to plan to do. We often have an internal knowing about where we’re going and what we want to accomplish, whether it’s a visionary decision or a single project. So we skip the meaningful questions that help us chart the best path.

But the hard questions that stop you in your tracks are also proof that you’re getting somewhere. They involve thinking critically about who you are and why you do what you do. They call to mind selling and marketing, which most of us avoid.

But most of all, we’re not clear about who we’re walking towards. Or we’re walking towards everyone and no one. Read more

Good, Fast, Cheap: Pick Two

(Download thisWhite paper: Good, Fast, Cheap as a PDF.)

Google the phrase “Good Fast Cheap Pick Two” and you get over 78 million search results. There are only 1.7 million for “Fountain of Youth.” Apparently people desire good, fast and cheap more than they do the secret to staying young. I see requests like this posted in online venues like LinkedIn. Is it the economy? Is there a growing sense of entitlement? Or is it more benign than that—businesses don’t realize that asking for good, fast and cheap will hinder their ability to be effective? Read more