The Business of Thanksgiving and Black Friday

In this week when we give thanks for all our blessings it seems crazy to me so much attention is on expanding our bounties. But that is the reality. So this week I thought I would look at the business that is Thanksgiving Week. But first, let us not forget the first “Thanksgiving.” It happened in late September or early October 1621 when the Pilgrims harvested their first crops – corn, squash, beans, barley, and peas. They also shot many migrating ducks and geese. They harvested and boiled the then plentiful lobster. William Bradford organized a harvest celebration and invited [...]

By | 2017-05-19T19:54:47+00:00 November 22nd, 2016|General|

How to Waste Ad Dollars, Quickly

Photo by the Author Having lived in New Hampshire for 34 years I have met many Presidents and candidates and have experienced nine primaries and been exposed to thousands of television commercials. And, as a businessperson, I am envious of the quantity of advertising dollars the candidates spent this year. So this week I went out and explored two of my curiosities – first, who spent how much on television ads in the New Hampshire Primary and, second, what happens to any leftover money if a candidate pulls out. Television Ad Spending for NH Primary. According to an [...]

By | 2017-05-19T19:54:50+00:00 February 24th, 2016|Business, General|

Trump is Running for His Brand, Not for President

I usually stay out of commenting on politics. But since Donald Trump is really a businessman, who happens to be running for President, I cannot resist writing my opinion. I think Trump is using the media and his followers to advance his brand name and is not running out of respect for America. Unlike this political sign here in Exeter, when he says something controversial his brand is not damaged, it is strengthened. News channels like CNN and BBC broadcast his image internationally, free of charge. Many people agree with him and some buy or lease units in his properties. And [...]

By | 2017-05-19T19:54:51+00:00 November 12th, 2015|Business, General|

Sometimes You Have to Have Fun with Crazy E-Mails

In my current role I receive and review lots of e-mail messages. Some are written by just plain angry people with dark corners in their souls. Others are obviously computer-generated phishing messages. While I usually just hit the delete button, I have to admit once in a while I am tempted to write back and express what I really think. I think we all have received one of those e-mails from a prince in Nigeria or from an allegedly familiar person, who is stranded in some foreign country without money. While most of us delete these e-mails, my cousin, Ron, [...]

By | 2017-05-19T19:54:52+00:00 August 21st, 2015|General|

Turn Down That Music

When I was in high school and home visiting from college my Dad often said, “Turn down that music!” Did this ever happen to you? What I did not expect a few weeks ago was someone to say it in a store I was in…here’s the rest of the story. Last week I was visiting a client work site with other members of our team at the J.C. Penney store in Peabody, Massachusetts. We were standing in the aisle of the kids clothing section looking very much like store management. An older woman walked by and asked us to turn [...]

By | 2017-05-19T19:54:52+00:00 August 13th, 2015|General|

Remember, Your Customers Are Not Guitars

Perhaps, like millions of other Americans, you have already seen this video. It is how a customer of United Airlines got revenge for pitiful, inattentive customer service. The customer was Dave Carroll and he is a musician who watched out a jet window as baggage handlers threw his guitar case around and broke the guitar. And, after numerous failed attempts to get United Airlines to just repair the guitar, he got revenge the only way he knew how – he wrote and performed in a YouTube video that now has 14 million hits! Since then, United Airlines has tried to [...]

By | 2017-05-19T19:54:53+00:00 May 7th, 2015|Business, General|

Two Car Questions to Start the Year

I could not believe how many car commercials were on television this past week. It seemed like every time I turned on the television, there was another one. Since it was the last week of the year, it made me curious about two questions: What share of television commercials come from the auto industry? Is there real pressure to reduce inventory at year-end and give consumers deals? Advertising by Automobile Industry. Of all the sectors or media of advertising, television advertising is the largest with over $67 billion in annual revenues. (Advertising media include television, digital, print, […]

By | 2017-05-19T19:55:08+00:00 January 5th, 2015|Business, General|

The Narratives of Columbus Day and Political Ads

People respond best to narratives, not just statistics, and that is important for leaders to remember. Effective narratives often include stories and have a message that pushes people to act. Statistics by themselves, while interesting to people like me, rarely push us into action.

By | 2015-01-29T12:00:50+00:00 October 15th, 2014|Business, General|

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