Terms That Do Not Endear You To Your Customer!

Walking Away

Be careful the terms you use. Recently, a banker who will remain nameless lost my business using the terms "widget" and "term you out." Never call a company's product a widget unless you intend to insult the company. Second, even if you think that a loan should be converted from a line of credit to a term loan, have the decency to explain the reasoning and use a term that does not sound so much like "turn you out"!I don't think there is much more to say on this subject.Mike   … [Read more...]

Marketing: Effective or Because You Like It?

I was working with a group a while back who were finalizing their branding.  They were fixated on the logo design.  Unfortunately for them, the whole selection process revolved around which one they liked best.  They did not ask past or potential customers for their opinion.  They did not follow best practices in logo design.  They simply chose the logo because they liked it.  How effective do you think their logo will be?  … [Read more...]

Business Partners and Investors: Check those references


I started my working life in the car business. I quickly came to the conclusion that people spend more time researching the purchase of a television than a car. In other words, people buy cars on emotion and looks. When engaging with business partners do not connect based on first impressions. In my last company after a failed situation, we were fond of asking each other the definition of “assume” (ass-u-me).  We assumed many facts that had we checked first, we would have gone a different direction.  Here are a few ideas for how to check out various business partners before hooking up:If you … [Read more...]

Getting your business email read, not recycled

Email remains one of the best tools for reaching people in business.  Unfortunately, many emails are destine for the recycle bin before being sent.  Here are a few guidelines to writing emails for business that will be read. Start with the end.  -  Business people are busy.  Tell them what you want first.  If you want a meeting, get to the point and say it.  ”I would like to meet with you at your convenience….  Be direct  -  If there is detail behind the request or question, include it in subsequent paragraphs. Stay in the window  -  In most cases you want to use as few words as possible. … [Read more...]

Don’t tell them, show them


“Being powerful is like being a lady. If you have to tell people you are, you aren’t.”  (Margaret Thatcher)There is so much truth in this statement and it applies to start-ups.  Let’s face it, if you are a start-up, you are not the biggest. What you are is different, special, specific, new, faster, more fun, less expensive, or just plain WOW.   Any way you say it, you won’t be believed by saying it, you will have to demonstrate it.Let your customer see you or feel you in action.  What matters is what they decide you are.  When you are interacting with your circle of connections, lead them … [Read more...]

Calling all Biotechnology Entrepreneurs! Don’t miss this event!


A number of organizations n the metro are hosting a meetup of Biotechnology entrepreneurs on November 13 from 5 to 7 pm. This will be a informal meeting  and networking event, discussing the local entrepreneurial ecosystem and what we can do to take it to the next level in central Iowa. Hosted by DMACC at the FFA Enrichment Center and sponsored by the Iowa BioTech Association, The Greater Des Moines Partnership and the City of Ankeny. … [Read more...]