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Marketing Tips from the Pros: Winter is Dumbing

I pass the ad for this every morning in the subway. Marketing tips from the pro’s: Don’t have a brand that looks like “Mongoloid” to everyone walking by it at more than three miles per hour.


Rules for Retention: Don’t Go Crazy With It – Turn Alumni Into Clients

Interesting take on retention from my CEO, doing an interview with a reporter. Basically, the idea is that TradingScreen is small and we train people well, so we lose staff to large brokers and buy side who write big checks. We do have a lot of retention programs in place, but rather than go crazy pushing the rock uphill with listed competitors, we keep strong enough relationships with many alumni that they become our clients.

I will update with a link when the article posts.


UPDATE: The section above didn’t make it in to the story (lucky I blogged it) but a great write-up from the interview here: TradingScreen Named A Great Entrepreneurial Place To Work.

Cool marketplace for startups and the people who love them – #EntrepreneurFinder

I love platforms that have the power to disrupt opaque, highly inefficient markets.

There’s a lot of similar companies going at private equity as matchmakers between business owners and sources of capital, from startup through middle-market (axialmarket is one going at the larger side of this spectrum).

It will be interesting to see how these firms change, partner-with, and/or replace the financial service providers that are the gatekeepers of capital in the current landscape.

The Age of the Generalist – Vindication (Finally) From #HBR

Great article from the Harvard Business Review about how the age of the specialist may be waning, in favor of Renaissance people like myself:

I have always thought that given the pace of technology, people who are investing in a particular specialization are rolling the dice on becoming specialists in a piece of business history. In marketing, the underlying skills – creating clear, credible, persuasive communications – are the same, but the tools and tactics change almost every day.

Apple Drinking Its Own “Revolutionary” Kool-Aid

As much as I like seeing a marketer in charge, this recent article in Business Insider about Schiller raises many areas of concern about Apple that I’ve noted myself over the last several months.

Every time I go to the Apple site and see the word “Revolutionary” next to “iPad 3” I think “Darn it – no it’s NOT.”

I mean, it’s a great product, but the 3 is in no way a revolutionary improvement on the 2. And, unless we count a forward facing camera, more memory and less weight as “revolutionary,”(I don’t)  you couldn’t make that claim about the iPad 2 either.

Now, the iPad 1 – yeah, it was revolutionary with no quotes. But that was two years ago. And in the tech space, that’s not too soon to be asking Apple: “Yeah, but what have you done for me lately?”

Marketers are always at risk of accidentally ingesting their own Kool-Aid. But you need to be able to substantiate your claims. “Revolutionary” is a pretty bold claim. And small, incremental product improvements are NOT “revolutionary.”

And, if I can step back into my previous role as equity research analyst — and while we’re talking about short signals — what’s with the dividend? Dividends from high-beta companies are basically a message to the market saying: “We don’t have any big ideas to invest in right now so we’re giving you back some money – enjoy!”

That doesn’t seem like a Steve Jobs move. Or revolutionary.

Marketing Tips From The Pros Number 129

Avoid functional names for products that encourage negative behaviors… like cannibalism:

More crazy stories about TradingScreen the part he…

More crazy stories about TradingScreen – the part he left out was when they had to take down the stretching poles from the former dance studio that was their offices when opening up their first office in Greenwich Village.

Trading Smarter

Double-sized origin-issue today folks, as TradingScreen’s Philippe Buhannic describes the time before TradingScreen, starting up the company, early mistakes and opportunities, a run in with NYC sanitation police, and the secret of how he got his super CEO powers (spoiler alert: bitten by a radioactive trader).

This was taped at the MIT Enterprise Forum covering NYC innovation on May 1, 2012.

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