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MAY | 2012

w w w. b r i l l i a n t p u b l i s h i n g . c o m

Is it an etch-a-sketch or a promotional product? Page 12

How Brands

Can Capitalize

on Pinterest

Referral Traffic Page 8


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Vol. 9, no. 05 2012

Cover Story 8


How Brands Can Capitalize on Pinterest referral Traffic

Departments 6

publisher’s letter


contributors: who’s who in the industry


exhibit: the impact of color in your exhibition


outside the box: is it an etch-a-sketch or a promotional product?


case study: reflectix slap-wrap combo


branding: brands get physical to build trust


strategies: 5 things marketers can learn from the meaning of stories


solutions: capturing the elusive thing called time


travel: celebrate national tourism month…beautifying your community


advice: how to make your day a good one

4 Brilliant Results

• May 2012


“Psssst. Wanna buy a sticky note?”

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Don’t fall for the knock-offs! Get genuine Post-it® Notes.

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PUBLisheR’s LetteR


Brilliant Publishing LLC 9034 Joyce Lane Hummelstown, PA 17036 Ph: 717.571.9233 Fax: 717.566.5431


Got a Great


handshake? are you using the proper colors

in your exhibit? Does your story have Meaning? are you maximizing Pinterest? are you focusing your talents and time in the right quadrants? answer those questions and many more by reading this issue, all with the singular resolve to grow your bottom line and generate results for your marketing programs. Yes, this issue again is topical and hard hitting with many enlightening tidbits to increase your business including how to effectively use old school toys in your marketing campaigns.

EDITORIAL Editor in Chief MaryAnne Morrill

Senior Editor

Michelle Donofry

Style Editor Charity Plata

Asst. Editor Molly Anika

Feel free to share this magazine with your colleagues, clients and friends. email it forward as an additional tactic to enhance your standing as a trusted advisor/partner. You will be providing useful information that when applied can be utilized to grow their bottom lines. remember those that go above and beyond are always the partners that make it when budgets get cut. thank you in advance for your time and keep those emails coming. We love finding stories and columns that will help you grow your business...after all we are all about results...BriLLiant reSULtS!

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Barton Goldsmith, Ph.D. , Steve Kramer, Martin Lindstrom, Jim Signorelli, Kathy Paauw, Barry Siskind, Dr. Peter Tarlow, Steve Woodburn


Jeremy Tingle Brilliant Results is published monthly by Brilliant Publishing LLC, 9034 Joyce Lane Hummelstown PA 17036 (717) 608-5869; Fax# (717) 566-5431. Copyright © 2012 Brilliant Publishing LLC. All rights

Make it a Brilliant Day!

reserved. The publisher reserves the right to accept or reject any advertising or editorial material. Advertisers, and/or their agents, assume the responsibility for any claims against the publisher based on the advertisement. Editorial contributors assume responsibility for their published works and assume responsibility for any claims against the publisher based on published work. No part of this publication can be reproduced in any form or by electronic or mechanical means,

Maureen Williams Publisher 717-608-5869 Follow us on twitter:

including information storage and retrieval systems, without written permission from the publisher. All items submitted to Brilliant Results become the sole property of Brilliant Publishing LLC. Editorial content does not reflect the views of the publisher. The imprints, logos, trademarks or trade names (Collectively the “Marks”) displayed on the products featured in Brilliant Results are for illustrative purposes only and are not available for sale. The marks do not represent the implied or actual endorsement by the owners of the Marks of the product on which they appear. All of the Marks are the property of the respective owners and is not the property of either the advertisers using the Marks or Brilliant Results.

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• May 2012

contributors a

Barton Goldsmith, Ph.D.

For more than two decades Fortune 500

companies, educational institutions, and government organizations have relied on Dr. Barton Goldsmith to help them develop creative and balanced leadership. His columns appear in over 500 publications. He may be contacted through his web site


Steven Kramer is the President of North America at hybris, a multichannel

commerce software vendor. In his role, Steven is responsible for running business

in the Americas. He’s recognized globally for receiving the Sam Steinberg Award for


Young Entrepreneur of the Year, which recognizes talented and creative business leaders driving success in innovative new businesses and in growing established leaders within the community.

c Martin Lindstrom,

b a respected branding and marketing expert, was

selected as one of the world’s 100 most influential people by TIME magazine. The


founder, CEO and Chairman of the LINDSTROM company (Sydney), Martin speaks to a global audience of approximately one million people every year. His latest book; Buyology – Truth and Lies About Why We Buy – a New York Times and Wall Street Journal best-selling book has been translated into 37 languages and is on almost all major best-seller lists worldwide.

d Jim Signorelli is the founder and CEO of ESW Partners, a Chicago-based


marketing firm. Over the years, he has worked for a number of national consumer and business brands including Citibank, Kraft Foods, Burger King, Toshiba, Emerson Electric, and The American Marketing Association. Inc. Magazine has cited Signorelli’s agency as one of the fastest growing independent companies in the U.S. for three years running and, in 2010, he was the recipient of the “Smart Leader” award given by Smart Business Magazine and U.S. Bank. For more information, please visit


e Kathy Paauw has owned and run her own successful business as a productivity consultant and a life coach for over 17 years. In 2005 she added a network marketing business to the mix and discovered how to create the freedom she’d always dreamed about. she went from feeling burned out from working too hard–either for someone else or for her own business–to becoming a top income earner as a successful network marketing professional. For information or to purchase a copy, visit www.



Barry Siskind

is an internationally recognized trade and consumer show

expert. He is the author of six bestselling business books including Powerful Exhibit Marketing. Read his newest book, Selling from the Inside Out for an in depth guide

to a successful sales career. Visit Barry at


Dr. Peter Tarlow is the founder and president of Tourism & More Inc. Dr. Tarlow has appeared on Nationally televised programs such as Dateline: NBC and on CNBC. Dr. Tarlow organizes conferences around the world dealing with visitor safety and security issues and with the economic importance of tourism and tourism marketing. For additional information visit

g h

h Steve Woodburn works with clients to develop creative and measurable

solutions that solve their marketing needs using promotional products, uniform

programs, online company stores, point-of-sale initiatives along with rewards and

recognition. He builds long-term relationships and becomes a trusted advisor and

consultant his clients can turn to for all their brand extension needs. You can reach him at Staples Promotional Products:

May 2012 • Brilliant Results 7

By: STeVen KrAmer, PreSiDenT norTH AmeriCA, HyBriS

How Brands Can Capitalize on Pinterest Referral Traffic SoCiaL MeDia HaS

dramatically changed the way consumers interact with brands online. More than ever, consumers are leveraging digital channel connections to make their voices heard, forcing brands to abandon one-way messaging and engage in meaningful dialogues with their customers. Pinterest is one of the most recent contenders to arrive on the social media scene. More than just another social networking fad, Pinterest has quickly captured a large social audience. With a current user base of more than 11.5 million consumers, Mashable names Pinterest the top online traffic driver for retailers, generating more referral traffic than Google+, Youtube and Linkedin combined. But as crowds of consumers flock to Pinterest, the big question is how can brands leverage Pinterest to drive traffic to their websites – and then capitalize on Pinterest referral traffic when it occurs?

ENGAGING CONSUMERS ON PINTEREST Pinterest falls squarely into the social media mainstream, giving users the ability to post and share content with others in their online social network. But unlike Facebook, twitter and other social networking sites, Pinterest is exclusively visual. instead of posting text-based status updates, users “pin” images that capture their imagination or reflect certain aspects of their lifestyle and personality. Since 70 percent of Pinterest’s user base consists of women between the ages of 25 and 44 (50 percent of whom have children), brands have the ability to use Pinterest to connect with a key customer demographic. But engaging with consumers on Pinterest isn’t as simple as posting images from the brand catalog. to succeed on Pinterest, brands need to learn how to cultivate followers by pinning images that promote trends and lifestyles rather than simple product snapshots. if users perceive the brand’s Pinterest board to be little more than an advertising tool or promotional vehicle for the latest product line, they will write off the brand’s Pinterest presence as shallow and inauthentic. More importantly, they won’t share the brand’s pins with their Pinterest network or click through 8 Brilliant Results

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When a customer clicks through a Pinterest post to the company website, they are initiating interest in a product or product line. Brands need to quickly build on that customer-initiated momentum, providing clickers with additional incentives to convert.

to the brand’s website – actions which represent the holy grail in capturing market share by connecting with consumers on Pinterest. it’s important for brands to approach Pinterest as an opportunity to initiate a two-way dialogue with consumers, many of whom are attracted to Pinterest because it streamlines their ability to exert control and influence in the social space. In addition to posting content that reflects the desired lifestyle of the brand’s target customer base, brands should proactively follow their customers’ pins and fully participate in the lifestyle curation process that makes Pinterest unique.

HOW TO CAPITALIZE ON PINTEREST REFERRAL TRAFFIC it’s one thing to stir up enthusiasm for products and brand lifestyles on Pinterest. But maximizing the impact of referral traffic that originates on Pinterest is a critical competency for social marketing programs that want to capitalize on Pinterest’s highly visual nature. as Pinterest gains traction among an even wider base of consumers, it will become increasingly important for brands and retailers to implement a handful of strategies designed to increase the value of the referral traffi c that is being generated by Pinterest. Site Fundamentals. although it may sound obvious, brands need to make sure their websites are updated and equipped with the ability to convert visitors that are referred from Pinterest. in addition to making sure that fundamental

conversion tools are in place (e.g. user-friendly navigation, streamlined conversion paths, etc.), brands should ensure that the customer experience on the site matches the lifestyle and trends that are being promoted on Pinterest. if the discrepancies are profound enough, they could be the catalyst for a string of negative mentions across multiple social networking sites. incentives. When a customer clicks through a Pinterest post to the company website, they are initiating interest in a product or product line. Brands need to quickly build on that customer-initiated momentum, providing clickers with additional incentives to convert. For example, brands can create custom offers designed exclusively for consumers who click through to the company website from Pinterest. referral tracking. referral tracking is a vital part of any multichannel commerce strategy. But for companies that operate in the social space, referral tracking can provide critical insights about the volume of visitors that are referred from social media sites like Pinterest, allowing brands to more accurately gauge their ability to engage Pinterest users. With the right tracking solution, brands can gain granular visibility into the images that are connecting with consumers – and those that aren’t. Sharing tools. ideally, consumers will spot brand content on Pinterest, click through to the company website and complete a purchase. But the added value comes when a Pinterest user visits the company website and shares content with others in their Pinterest network. to encourage social sharing, brands need to make it easy for visitors to pin products or “looks” on their Pinterest pages, starting with the strategic inclusion of “Pin it” buttons on company websites. in many ways, Pinterest is a visual “word of mouth” mechanism that allows consumers to easily endorse and share images of products and other brand content with their online networks. although Pinterest clearly has the ability to deliver wins in the area of brand awareness, the retailers that will benefit most from Pinterest (and its rapidly growing user base) are those that carefully cultivate referral traffic and implement site-based strategies to convert Pinterest referral traffic. May 2012 • Brilliant Results 9

eXhiBit By: BArry SiSKinD

The Impact of Color in your Exhibition tHe SUCCeSS or

failure of your exhibition plans can sometimes be linked to something as simple as color. Color appears everywhere from your web-site homepage to your brochure but at a show the place color makes its greatest impact is in your display. Yet without some forethought a small miscalculation in choosing the right color can spell disaster. it used to be so simple. the discussion of color came down to cool or warm colors. Cool colors being blues, greens and whites, the warm colors, red, orange and yellow. But, there is so much more to the discussion.

WHICH COLOR SHOULD DOMINATE Color ties your display to your product. When it is well done, color creates a visual image that sparks the imagination of the visitor. Your ultimate goal is to focus attention on your product with the display as background. While this is the general rule, some products in themselves are rather uninspiring visually and need the help that the display can offer. if your products fall into this category—for example, products such as small automotive parts, some hardware items, software, certain packaged goods, etc.— then you must create a display that compensates visually for what your product lacks. For these examples, a strong color for the display will draw attention to the product yet not overshadow it. You can select contrasting colors on the color wheel. if, however, your product easily lends itself to color— such as giftware, linens, clothing, etc.—then highlight the color in the product and let the display blend into the background with subtle tones. another scenario is where the product color and display color work in harmony. For example, an upscale line of clothing might be well displayed in an exhibit that has colors that reflect the quality of the product.

CORPORATE (BRAND) COLORS Part of your brand is color. But in an increasingly competitive world there are few brands (and their colors) that are powerful enough to achieve universal recognition.

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If you have strong, identifiable corporate colors, use them in your display; think about Starbucks’ green, CocaCola’s red and DeWalt Power tool’s yellow. every brand, large and small, is attempting to build a level of awareness. these recognized colors become a crucial part of your display. Consumers get familiar with the logo and color. if they attend a show and don’t see corporate images, they might simply walk-by the display without recognizing the exhibitor.

COLOR AND CULTURE Various cultures have their unique interpretation of colors. For example, in Japan the color yellow represents grace; in the United States it represents caution and in China the imperial color is yellow. in France red represents aristocracy, while in Britain it is purple. White is the predominant color in north american bridal shows yet in Japan it’s the color of mourning. in China red symbolizes good luck and in South africa red is the color of mourning. if you are creating a display for a particular culture, it’s important to pay attention to its color sensitivities. However, if you are creating a display for a global, multicultural audience, then consider using an array of colors found in nature. if you conduct a Google search for “color and culture,” you will find information that focuses on cultural interpretation of color. When you are developing your display it is well worth having a discussion with your display builder about color. the discussion should include, in addition to a description of your product and brand, a detailed list of the countries where you plan to exhibit. But what if your trade show plans are limited to a domestic market; does the discussion of culture become irrelevant? the simple answer is that it is highly unlikely that a domestic marketplace is one homogeneous mass of people; populations are a mixture of cultures and ethnic backgrounds. If you have identified your customer profile properly it will give you strong clues that need to be incorporated into your exhibition plans. Color can make or break an exhibit so plan carefully.

OUtside the BOX By: STeVe WooDBUrn

one oF tHe

hallmarks of an effective branding tool is its ability to evoke emotion. Studies have shown time and again that at the very core of most any purchase is an emotional response that people may not even realize is driving them to buy. Brands work hard so customers make these emotional connections to their products. tV ads can create emotional connections through video, radio has long had the ability to touch people with words, sounds and music and promotional products also help connect a brand to its customers. Promotional products are the perfect way to build or reinforce a tactile connection by adding a logo or tagline to an iconic product from people’s past; the emotional response can be instantaneous. research has shown when times are particularly difficult, people tend to look back to their past for comfort and reassurance that all will be well. one way to create this bond with customers and prospects is to include an iconic toy in your marketing mix that transports people back to simpler times. these iconic toys touch multiple demographics with their simplicity and will quickly bring a smile to the face of those who receive them: Etch-A-Sketch: originally known by its French inventor as “the magic screen” was introduced in 1960 and quickly became one of the favorite toys of the baby boom generation. With the ability to create, make mistakes and start over again this toy is

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similar to the trials and tribulations of life and how we all sometimes long to begin again, to shake our lives up so to speak. Using a branded etch-a-Sketch… be it a key chain, mini or regular size version, it will keep your logo in front of your customers for the long run. Rubik’s Cube: Patented by erno rubik, a Hungarian sculptor and professor in 1974, this puzzle has sold close to 400 million cubes worldwide and is considered the world’s best selling toy. Will Smith as Chris Gardner in the movie “Pursuit of Happyness” learned to solve the rubik’s puzzle and brought this toy newfound fame. in the promo world you can buy key-sized versions, mini and regular sized, stress rubik’s cubes and cubes that are branded with a logo or completely customized. Despite the fact the majority of us can never solve this enigma; it’s a toy that keeps your brand literally in the hands of customers. Magic 8 Ball: Created by a man whose mom was a clairvoyant and used a similar “spirit writing” device, this toy hit the market in 1950. Known originally as the Syco-Seer, this toy answers yes-no questions posed to it when a 20-sided die appears in a clear window with either a positive, negative or non-committal statement. Putting your logo on this timeless toy will touch several generations from the baby boomers to Gen C who know the Magic 8 ball from its appearance in Pixar’s movie “toy Story.” Viewmaster: introduced at the 1939 new York World’s Fair as an alternative to postcards, the Viewmaster was originally designed as a tourism vehicle with the Grand Canyon and Carlsbad Caverns as the main subjects of their disks. Since then more than 1.5 billion viewers have been sold

along with thousands of disk subjects. For brands, the Viewmaster is a unique way to highlight new products, corporate presentations, point-of-sale displays and marketing campaigns. the key is creative imagery because you’re guaranteed that handing someone a Viewmaster will result in their looking at the pictures. intriguing content will generate buzz and elicit fond memories. Silly Putty: invented as a potential rubber substitute during World War ii, it turned out to be a useless product. Samples were sent to scientists worldwide, but no practical use was ever found for the gooey, bouncy material. But someone saw potential as a toy and since 1950 - 300 million Silly Putty eggs have been sold. Used by brands to tout their flexibility, draw people into a tradeshow booth or just for the heck of it, Silly Putty reminds us of fun and i can’t think of any brands that couldn’t use a little more of that. randomly using an iconic toy in your promotional marketing campaign is all well and fine, the best way to use something like this is to tie a strategy, theme or tagline to

the product you choose so all your marketing efforts reflect the same message. as with any promotional product, it should always be part of an overall marketing campaign or the results will fall far short of what they could be. o.K., back to work now and let’s see, was i using the horizontal or vertical knob on my etch-a-Sketch?

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BRAnding By: mArTin linDSTrom

Brands Get Physical To Build FroM HanDSHaKeS to

hardware, intimate signals constantly affect us in life. as the world becomes increasingly digital, we are losing many sensory signals that once moved us. Here’s what companies can do to reclaim these touching moments. i’m sure you’ve had the experience of reaching out to shake someone’s hand, only to be surprised by a palm so limp that it feels more like a dead fish than a warm welcome. What was your immediate impression of the person? How, then, did you reassess them? if you thought it indicative of a weak character, you’re onto something. Some years ago, researchers at the University of alabama studied 112 male and female students whose handshakes were evaluated by four handshake coders. the coders had received one month of training and practice in shaking hands and evaluating handshakes before the study began. the students, who didn’t know their handshakes were being evaluated, had their hands shaken eight times (twice with all four experimenters) and they also completed four personality questionnaires. results of the study, led by Dr. William F. Chaplin, showed that a person’s handshake is consistent over time and is related to some aspects of his or her personality. Those with a firm handshake were more extroverted and open to experience, and less neurotic and shy than those with a less firm or limp handshake. What strikes me is that we are somehow intuitively aware of this personality evaluation filter, where something as simple as a touch significantly influences our decision-making processes. Having worked with sensory signals throughout my

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Trust career, i’ve come to appreciate how the smallest sensory details can have the greatest impact. take, for example, the sound and feel of opening a bottle of water. You’re at least subconsciously familiar with the subtle click of a breaking seal. However, let’s say you’re in india, where the water bottles open silently. When i heard about the absence of the subtle click, i questioned the safety of the water. apparently i wasn’t alone: i remember reading about a competitive water bottler who took advantage of this, changed the top so that it clicks, and gained a competitive advantage in the water market place. People believe the water is safer. Signals across almost every aspect of our lives affect us. it’s interesting to note that, as we become increasingly digital, we are losing many sensory signals that once surrounded us. others, however, often replace these. We’ve come to depend on a whole new set of tones as we key in numbers on an atM or a cell phone. in order to investigate just how important our senses are, i initiated a small experiment exploring people’s perception of an unknown brand, based on the type of media where they were introduced to it. i wanted to look at how different media formats convey indirect messages. But, most importantly, i was interested in seeing if the physical presence of a media channel, such as a billboard, would affect a person’s sensory impression of the advertised brand. We established four different sources: a billboard, a storefront, a print ad and a banner ad. The fi ctitious brand, insursafe, claiming to sell insurance, was featured in almost identical fashion across all four media platforms. We then

questioned 132 volunteers on which source inspired the greater impact regarding trust and sensory impressions. then using only those volunteers who had indeed noticed the message, we discovered something quite fascinating. the more ‘physical’ the media channel was, the more ‘solid’ was the impression it formed in the respondents’ brains. the signage on the storefront was the most trusted, followed by the billboard. they outperformed, by far, the print ad and banner ad. not only was there greater trust for the fi ctitious insurance company when viewed on a building or a billboard, the volunteers also expressed a stronger emotional relationship with it. Perhaps more surprisingly, people also felt a stronger sensory relationship with the brand that they saw on the shop front and the billboard. When asked what senses they linked with insursafe, the storefront and billboard registered three times more sensory connections than the print or banner ad. Bear in mind that no one had ever heard of this brand before and exactly the same logo and message appeared in all four options. We have been led to believe that, as the world transitions to all things digital, we will naturally embrace whatever is on offer. this is far from true. our brains regard a physical presence as a more reliable and trustworthy conveyer of messages and we also log more sensory impressions to the brand. Why, you may ask, is that so

important? When i was conducting fMri experiments for my book Buyology, i learned that the more sensory impressions a brand conveys, the more likely we are to remember it. this perhaps goes some way to explaining why that handshake is so important. What occurs when we’re consistently deprived of sensory cues? My theory is that, for example, when we sit in front of a screen and push away at order-confi rmation buttons, we need to fi nd a way to compensate for the absence of touch. So, as thousands of retail stores close their doors each day and hundreds of conventional media channels seem increasingly paralyzed by social media’s magnetic appeal, contextual messages and data mining, it just might be that the large signage displayed on the local office building or the CBS outdoor billboard is massaging your brain in ways that no banner ad can hope to compete with. of course, i never said that. My message was merely conveyed by a firm handshake, based on trust.

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insight By: Jim Signorelli

5 Things Marketers Can Learn from the Meaning of Stories
 Stories are one of the most powerful tools in our communication arsenal. Since the beginning of language, they continue to inspire, motivate and engage us like no other form of communication can. There are good reasons for this. And some of those reasons provide lessons for marketers. Here are 5 worth noting: 


Stories clothe facts with Big M-Meaning: All stories have meaning or some reason for being told. Consider this story: The young athlete who trained by doing 100 leg squats every day ended up winning the marathon. 
In effect, this is a story about the functional benefit of leg squats for runners. 
 Now, consider this revision: The young athlete who trained by doing 100 leg squats every day ended up winning the marathon. He has a prosthetic leg.  
 The first story conveys meaning in the form of useful information i.e. leg squats build running endurance. 16 Brilliant Results

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However, the second story is more than just useful. It’s inspirational. By contrast, it has Meaning - big-M Meaning. The additional 5-word sentence makes the second story about the same runner far more significant. 
 One of the most important questions marketers need to ask about their brand is whether it conveys meaning or Meaning. Facts about unique features and benefits may be useful, but that are not Meaningful. To go for Meaning, brands have to associate with personal values like exploration, determination, hard work, or ingenuity just to mention a few…and if the communication of those values provoke an emotional response, all the better. 


We are more drawn to stories that leave the Meaning to us. Andrew Stanton, the creator of Toy Story and Wall-e, refers to his “unifying theory of 2+2” as our desire to come to our own conclusions. We do not want to be told the answer is 4.  We’d rather figure it out the problem for ourselves.  This is one of the principles

of story that attracts us to them as a communication device. Movies, novels, poems or songs do not explain the meaning behind their messages. Meaning is left to the audience’s interpretation. 
 This is very unlike much of what we see in advertising. Advertising often gets in its own way when it sets out to convey Meaning. By telling us what values to associate with brands, or by telling us how to think about a given brand, we often resist or put up our protective BS shields. Consumers don’t need or want to be told your brand believes in caring about its customers or that your brand works hard for its money. 
 Taking a lesson from stories, it is far more engaging and believable to pull Meaning from the mind of the consumer than to push from the voice of the brand. Notice in the second story above, there was no mention of what to think or feel.  If you thought or felt anything about the winning marathon runner with the prosthetic leg, it was because of your interpretation, not mine. Storytellers cause you to see what you see, but do little to cause the way you think or feel about what you see.  Doing so would be like the comedian explaining the punch line of his joke.  


Audiences gravitate to Meaning that arouses identification. 
Another reason we are so drawn to stories is because of their ability to help us see ourselves.   Identification is a story’s ability to help us feel recognized for who we are and what we value.  Besides helping us realize that we are not alone, identification also helps us examine what are sometimes unconscious beliefs that motivate our behavior. 
 Too often, brands that set out to create their identities ignore the benefits of creating identification. Creating a brand identity involves telling or purposefully positioning a brand to help consumers see what makes it different or better vis-avis the alternatives. By contrast, creating brand identification is about helping the prospect relate to what the brand stands for, or its cause.  It’s about helping prospects see that your brand is for people like them.  Creating a differentiated brand identity may influence buying.   But creating strong brand identification will influence joining. It’s always better to have joiners than buyers. Joiners are the ones who stay buyers and wear your logos.


Storywriters don’t use focus groups to decide what their Meaning should be. Storywriters don’t manufacture meaning on the basis of what will sell to the greatest number of people.  Rather, they start with an authentically held core belief that they want to share and express in their own way. 
 Lack of authenticity is one of the many reasons why consumers have become cynical about advertising. Today’s consumer is just too smart to fall for forced intimacy. They know when you are trying too hard to fit into their lives. Rather, consumers want and need brands to be true to their own causes.  And, if you think what you say or even imply about yourself is enough, think again. As far as consumers are concerned, your brand’s truth will always be revealed more through actions than anything advertised. Trustable people don’t tell you they are trustable. And friendly people don’t put you on hold for 30 minutes.  
If consumer research is required; better that it be used to compare expressions of Meaning than to derive Meaning. Meaning is an inside job. 


For great storywriters, Meaning is expressed in a similar fashion, from story to story. 
If you go to any best seller’s list of books, you’ll often find it consists of many narratives written by authors with whom we are familiar. Having enjoyed their previous works, we clamor for their newest work. And we do this out of an affinity for both their interesting perspectives and their individualized expressions. We are not only drawn to messages they want us to read, but also to the way they consistently write them.  
 The reason some people will camp out in front of the Apple store the night before a new product launch is simple: The new product is from Apple. As their thinking goes, if it’s from Apple, it’s got to be something worth having. 
 Each new product Apple produces is recognizably linked to the one it updates. The new offering may provide improvements, but more importantly, it remains a continuance of Apple’s Big-M Meaning. Just as writers remain true to their voice, Apple takes great pains to make sure its products deserve a rightful place within its family.  
 These are just 5 things marketers can learn from stories. The parallels between good stories and strong brands are rich with more.

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insPiRAtiOnAL thinKing By: KATHy PAAUW

Capturing that Elusive Thing Called Time “The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing.” -STePHen CoVey

So oFten i hear people say, “i can’t afford to take

time out of my busy schedule to plan!” to that i respond by saying, “if you are that tight on time, then you can’t afford not to take time out to plan.” i’ll illustrate my point with a real-life example. over the past year i have worked with two very bright and capable women who have a lot in common. i’ll call them Carol and Marilyn (not their real names). Both are professionals working in similar fields. Both supervise a large team of employees. Both are married to spouses who also work outside the home. Both are mothers of schoolage kids. Both are about the same age. Both struggle with managing the volume of paper and electronic information they receive daily. Looking at these women from the outside, they appear to have a lot in common.

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• May 2012

and they are very different. Carol and Marilyn independently hired me to help them get organized. Before teaching them a process i use to manage paper and de-clutter their offices, I spent some time talking with them about their priorities. Why? Because organizing one’s physical environment without first clarifying priorities is like rearranging deck chairs on the titanic! although i’ve shared similar organizing tools and processes with both of them, their responses have been very different. Later in this article i will share how they are so different. although i am devoting the majority of this article to a discussion about time management, I want to first point out the difference between management and leadership. Management works within the system. Leadership works

on the system. Stephen Covey reminds us that “fundamental to putting first things first in our lives is leadership before management.”  It becomes critical to ask yourself, “Am I doing the right things?” before “Am I doing things right?” Once you are clear about your priorities (doing the right things), planning and organizing around those priorities is essential. This is because we are a society that is urgency addicted.  We tend to focus on that which is urgent -- whether the activity is important or not. Stephen Covey sums up the problem very well:  “It’s important to realize that urgency itself is not the problem.  The problem is that when urgency is the dominant factor in our lives, importance isn’t.  What we regard as “first things” are urgent things.  We’re so caught up in doing, we don’t even stop to ask if what we’re doing really needs to be done.” If you struggle with a strong urgency mindset, read on.  I guarantee that you will feel more satisfied and fulfilled when you take steps to focus your time and energy on what’s most important and avoid those activities that are less important or not important to you. Time Management Matrix



Not Urgent









“What does it matter how much we do
if what we’re doing isn’t what matters most?” 
-Stephen Covey, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

In his book First Things First, Stephen Covey offers a wonderful tool for analyzing how you spend your time -- the Time Management Matrix. Covey has broken time into four quadrants:

Quadrant I: Quadrant of Necessity

This quadrant represents activities that are necessary for you to focus on, because they are urgent (time-sensitive) AND important to you. These are some of the kinds of activities that fall into Q-I: 
 •• Pressing problems / crisis
 •• Deadline-driven projects 
 •• Last-minute preparations for scheduled activities

We tend to focus on Q-I activities because they are urgent and the need to do these activities makes itself known to us. These activities are hard to ignore because our life experiences have taught us that when we ignore Q-I activities, we get into trouble.

Quadrant II: Quadrant of Quality & Personal Leadership

This quadrant represents activities that are important, but because they are not urgent, they are easy to put on the back burner for “when I have more time.” In order to focus on these activities, one must be proactive.  Here are examples of activities that fall into Q-II:
 •• Preparation/planning
 •• Prevention
 •• Values clarification
 •• Exercise
 •• Relationship-building
 •• True recreation/relaxation The more time we spend in Q-II, the more quality we add to our lives.  If we neglect Q-II activities long enough, sometimes they become Q-I activities (urgent and important).  For example, exercise is generally considered a Q-II activity because there is no deadline by which you must exercise.  However, if you neglect exercise long enough -- “I’ll do it when I have more time” - it may become a Q-I (urgent) activity when your health care provider tells you that you will face major health problems if you don’t start exercising regularly.  Unfortunately, “more time” never comes.  We all get 168 hours a week.  Check out my 168 Hour Exercise for a good time analysis tool. Effectively translating these high-leverage Quadrant II goals into action requires a framework for effective decision-making about how you spend your time.  Most people struggle to find time for the important but not urgent activities in their already-overflowing schedules.  Covey reminds us that “the key is not to prioritize your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.”

Quadrant III Quadrant of Deception

This quadrant represents activities that are not important and urgent (time-sensitive). Q-III is known as the Quadrant of Deception, because we get deceived into believing that these activities are important because they are urgent, even though we’ve identified these activities as not important.  The word “urgent” means that the activity is time-sensitive or deadline-driven.  For example, an incoming phone call is considered urgent because the phone is ringing right now.  It may or may not be important, but if you don’t answer the phone now, it will stop ringing. Here are examples of activities that fall into Q-III:
 Unimportant interruptions & phone calls
 May 2012 • Brilliant Results 19

Unimportant mail & reports
 Some meetings
 Many “pressing” matters
 Many popular activities The activities represented in this quadrant are ones that we would do well to say no to or renegotiate. The only exception to this would be activities that are important to someone who is important to you.  You may deem an activity important because you value a relationship.  Some Q-III activities may be related to tasks required by an employer.  For example, an employee is asked to write a report that he does not see any value in creating, but because the employer wants it -- and he values his job or that relationship -- the Q-III activity becomes a Q-I activity.  If a large portion of your work is filled with activities that fall into Q-III, it may be time to consider career move. Many of us are “urgency addicted” - a self-destructive behavior that temporarily fills a void created by unmet needs.  This type of addiction is as dangerous as other commonly recognized addictions and dependencies.

Quadrant IV: Quadrant of Waste

This quadrant represents activities that are not important and are not urgent. Here are examples of activities that fall into Q-IV: •• Trivia, busywork 
 •• Reviewing junk mail 
 •• Some phone calls 
 •• Escape activities
 •• Viewing mindless TV shows Most of us do not spend much time in this quadrant because we simply don’t have time to waste.  The most common Q-IV activity I encounter in my work with busy people is escape activities.  When the stress level gets high enough, some people escape from reality by doing activities that do not address or resolve the problem.  This is considered wasteful. Note that the same activity can fall into Q-II or Q-IV.  You are the only one who can determine which quadrant the activity belongs in.   If you are treating yourself to true recreation and relaxation (resting and renewing yourself), you are in Q-II.   If you are engaging in an escape activity (avoiding the problem and not finding a solution), you are in Q-IV.  The motivation behind the activity determines which quadrant you are in. The goal is to manage activities in Quadrant I, focus on activities in Quadrant II, and avoid activities in Quadrants III and IV - activities that you’ve deemed as not important.  And yet, because so many of us are urgency-addicted, we tend to spend the bulk of our time in Quadrants I and III - doing activities that are urgent and 20 Brilliant Results

• May 2012

important or urgent and not important. Now that you have a tool to help you measure how much of your time you spend doing activities that are not important to you, it’s time to make some conscious choices about how you spend your time in the future. Weekly Planning – A Transformational Key to Reclaiming Your Life

“The greatest value of the planning process is not what it does to your schedule, but what it does to your head. As you begin to think more in terms of importance, you begin to see time differently.  You become empowered to put first things first in your life in a significant way.” --Stephen Covey, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People

Let’s revisit my clients, Carol and Marilyn. Carol has fully embraced the weekly planning process. She is noticeably more at peace now than she was when we first started working together.  Her quality of life has dramatically improved as she has clarified priorities and has done weekly planning to ensure that she focuses her time on Quadrant I and II activities and avoids Quadrant III and IV activities. Marilyn has not reserved time for planning.  She is too busy putting out fires (Quadrant I) to spend time planning her weeks (Quadrant II).  And the more she neglects Quadrant II activities - relationship-building, selfcare, values clarification, and planning her schedule to accommodate what is most important in her life - the more Quadrant I activities she has to deal with. She generates her own fires and then feels compelled to put them out. When we neglect activities in Quadrant II long enough, they often become Quadrant I.  Then our schedules get filled with urgent activities.  When urgency rules, stress levels go up, and we do not feel that we have any choice about how we spend our time. A client recently began our coaching call by sharing her frustration about not having enough time.  She went on to list all of the things that she HAD to do that day.  After hearing her say “I have to.” about six times, I asked her, “Do you CHOOSE to do all these things you’ve just listed?”  She recognized that she did not HAVE TO do any of them... that she chose to do most of them, and she might choose to either delegate or not do one of the things that before felt like a HAVE TO.  The realization that these activities were a choice completely shifted how she felt about them. Language is very powerful as we do our planning.  Be aware of your self-talk as you make choices for the week. Listen especially for should, gotta, and have to in your

talk. those trigger words may signal that you may not be feeling at choice, even though you probably are. Unless someone is holding a gun to your head, you have a lot more choice than you realize. Stephen Covey has created a six-step weekly planning process. i’ve found that this process does not work nearly as well if i skip any of these steps: 1. review your own personal life mission or purpose. 2. review your key roles, beginning with SeLF. 3. identify what you choose to do this week for each of your key roles. 4. Schedule into your calendar the choices you identified in Step 3. 5. exercise integrity in the moment of choice as you live your week. 6. evaluate how your week went as you prepare for the next week. to review this planning process in greater detail, click here. this process has transformed my life as well as the lives of many of my clients. People are motivated to change by two things: increasing pleasure or decreasing pain. Weekly planning is a tool that has the capacity to help you increase pleasure and decrease pain in your life. I challenge you to go to your calendar NOW and schedule one hour a week for the next month -- preferably at the same time each week -- to do your weekly planning. Focus on Quadrant i and ii activities as you plan. i’ll bet that the quality of each week will go up and you will feel a much greater sense of accomplishment because you will have heightened your focus on what’s most important to you.

Language is very powerful as we do our planning. Be aware of your self-talk as you make choices for the week.

For 17 years I’ve owned and run my own successful business as a productivity consultant and a life coach. In 2005 I added a network marketing business to the mix and I discovered how to create the freedom I’d always dreamed about. I went from feeling burned out from working too hard–either for someone else or for my own business–to becoming a top income earner as a successful network marketing professional. My goal now is to help others tap into their own passions and create the financial and lifestyle freedom that I’ve been blessed with. This book is my way of sharing what I’ve learned along the way. For information or to purchase a copy, visit

May 2012 • Brilliant Results 21

tRAveL By: Dr. PeTer TArloW

celebrate national tourism Month… beautifying your community

tHe MontH oF May is national tourism month. this month is traditionally the time when tourism professionals not only celebrate the accomplishments of one of the world’s largest professions, but also take stock in their community. it is a time when tourism professionals think about not only what their community can do for them, but also what they can do for their community. an unfair criticism often heard is that tourism is not as clean and green an industry as tourism professionals claim that it is. tourism’s critics note that added tourism means more cars on the streets, greater water usage, and often an influx of visitors who seem to care nothing for a 22 Brilliant Results

• May 2012

community’s natural resources or for its beauty. of course, nothing could be further from the truth. While tourism clearly seeks to increase local visitation, it should be noted that visitors pay a myriad of taxes, ranging from hotel and motel taxes to airport fees, from taxes on the gasoline that they purchase to sales tax on the items that they buy. in a like manner, most places of lodging have become centers for ecological awareness and go out of their way to promote the need to be environmentally sensitive. tourism does best when a community is well groomed and well maintained, and one of the ways that tourism officials can demonstrate that they are an essential part

of their community is by promoting community beautification. Here are a few ideas on how tourism professionals can achieve brilliant results by helping to beautify their community. Do not just preach environmental sensitivity; do it! involve the whole community/locale in beautifi cation projects. Too many people have come to believe that beautifi cation is the other person’s business. While governments must provide funding for major projects such as sidewalks or road reconstruction, there are a whole host of projects that local citizens can accomplish without government assistance. among these are planting of gardens, cleaning of front yards, developing interesting street corners, creatively painting walls, and/or planting bushes to hide dump sites. Tourism officials need to be involved in every aspect of beautification. Look at your community the way others may see it. all too often we become so accustomed to run down appearances, dirt, or lack of green spaces that we simply come to accept these eyesores as part of our urban or rural landscaping. take the time to view your area through the eyes of a visitor. are there dumpsites in clear view? How well are lawns kept? is garbage dealt with in a clean and efficient manner? Then ask yourself, would you want to visit or live in this community? no tourism agency can do everything. emphasize one or two projects rather than wasting your energy on a host of projects that never get completed. nothing succeeds like success, and beautification projects reflect as much about a community’s insides as outer appearances. if a community does not like itself, that will be manifested by the way it looks to visitors and possible business developers. Before beginning a beautification project, set do-able goals and then make sure that as many people as possible are enthusiastic about the project and reject negative thought. Beautiful places begin with community harmony. Make sure that your beautification projects fit your climate and terrain, but also your budget. a major mistake in

beautification projects is trying to be what a locale is not. If you have a desert climate, then plant with water concerns in mind. if you have a cold climate, then seek ways to deal with not only a harsh winter climate but also in a manner to present a cheerful face during the gray winter months. in the same manner, not every community is wealthy, but all communities can do fix-ups, can pick up trash, can paint over graffiti and can repair broken windows. Think of beautification as part of an economic development package. remember that tax incentives can only do so much. no matter how much money a community offers in tax abatements, quality of life issues will always have a major impact on where people choose to live and locate their businesses. tourism demands that a community offer a clean and healthy environment, with good restaurants and places of lodging, fun things to do and good customer service. the way your community appears has a lot to do with the choices that business executives make regarding site selections. remind your local police and security professionals that one of the best ways to bring down the crime rate is by beautifying a locale. the basic principle is that as communities seek ways to beautify, crime decreases and money used to fight crime can be redirected to quality of life issues. Policing tends to be reactive by nature; beautification projects are proactive. While pretty flower beds and tree-lined boulevards will not prevent all crimes, the elimination of garbage along streets, unkempt lawns and shoddy structures does a great deal to lower crime rates. Do not get frustrated! not everything has to be done in one year. Beautification is reflected in a slow steady progress rather than rapid change. Do not try to accomplish more than the community is capable of within a short time frame. Better one successful project than a series of half hearted failures. Remember that you are planting not only flower seeds but also the seeds of change and positive growth. remember next May will also be national tourism month! May 2012 • Brilliant Results 23


How To Make Your Day A Good One

24 Brilliant Results

• May 2012

Some like to do it at night; others do it first thing in the morning. No, I’m not talking about sex. I’m talking about something that lasts much longer and will improve the energy in your relationship as well as your mood. I’m talking about taking a moment to remember that, ultimately; you are in charge of your mood. 

 Healthy people are able to deal with upsets without getting upset. A difficult phone call or an unexpected problem won’t throw them into a tizzy, because they have chosen to stay in a good headspace. 

 I know there are numerous people out there who will swear on a stack of Prozac that they have no control over their moods. If something bad happens around them, they choose to feel bad. Meanwhile, those who want to keep their energy balanced may get slightly thrown off, but they realize that this state is only temporary. They will then gather their forces and deal directly with the problem du jour. 

 We all do have the power to change the way we feel, but if you’re prone to feeling sorry for yourself, or have gotten used to being down or frightened, it’s harder to do. In addition, there are people who have mood disorders, which makes life much more challenging. It may be harder for someone suffering from a chemical imbalance to decide how to feel, but no one is powerless. 

 Gathering your will to maintain a focus on your feelings is not an easy thing to do in the beginning. However, with a little time and perhaps some coaching, you can learn to keep yourself from being a victim of your own brain chemistry. 

 Recognizing triggers is a helpful tool to make your days brighter. If you know that a scary movie is going to give you bad dreams, the simple solution is not to watch it. Surprisingly, though, many people do not think about such precursors to feeling uncomfortable. Look, if you know green peppers give you a stomachache… then don’t eat them—no matter how good they might look. 

 Self-control is also self-determination. By making the right choices you are setting yourself up for better outcomes and feelings. If you see that your mood is upsetting to others and don’t do anything about it, then you are choosing to make those around you uncomfortable, and most of the time they will leave. 

 People who let their bad moods run them, rather than trying to change how they are feeling, may have given up on ever feeling good about most anything, but especially about themselves. Instead, you can remind yourself that you are a good person with a strong mind, and you are doing everything in your power to act appropriately and make your life better. 

 These attitudes and actions are a small sample of what you can do to change your mood and your mind. They all require the same thing—the dedication and desire to making your day, and your life, a better place to be.

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