Could Celebrities Be Cutting-Edge Marketers – Leading Online Business Entrepreneurs?

August 9, 2017

Entertainment and enterpreneur

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“Where is The Future of Online Business –
Could Celebrities be showing mainstream business the way?”
Have Your Competitors ‘Caught On” and already Talking to Your Customers in this latest marketing evolution for Web Success? (And are they doing it Auto-matically and VERY Cheaply!) SO MANY Crucial Questions to answer… please read on.

The following Report is the Cover Story for “Australian Business Solutions” magazine

YOU WILL DISCOVER HOW CELEBRITY MARKETING STYLES ONLINE LEAD ‘AUDIENCES’ TO WANT TO BUY RATHER THAN THE CONVENTIONAL BUSINESS APPROACH OF SELLING AND CLOSING. YOU WILL DISCOVER VALUABE, IN FACT ESSENTIAL INSIGHTS AND IDEAS THAT EVERY MARKETER, ENTREPRENEUR AND BUSINESS OWNER MUST NOW EMBRACE!”

(WARNING: THIS REPORT MAY FRIGHTEN YOU… IT WILL DEFINITELY ENLIGHTEN YOU!)
There is a buzz around on the television news, radio, in the print media, at business networking groups and meetings and especially on the internet right now. There seems to be a shift of focus for how people look for products and services and then decide how they spend their money.

In terms of influence and power, the new way people search for products and services and make their buying decisions online could even rival the search engines. And it’s been said that this buzz could be the single biggest thing to happen in business since the industrial revolution!

Sounds over the top, but is there enough evidence (for you) to be a part of it too? And is this buzz a fad or could it be here to stay?

If you’ve watched TV news or listened to radio or brought a newspaper in the past 2-3 years, you will have noticed references to websites in both stories and advertising, where you can find out more – including how to get more information about a product or service and/or how to buy instructions. In more recent times nearly every news presenter, TV show host, journalist and celebrity are also promoting how you can ‘follow’ their lives, interests and activities online too – and it all seems to be centred around websites such as Facebook.com, Twitter.com, YouTube.com, Digg.com and more, collectively known as Social Engines.

Celebrities are using these sites to raise their profile, build their brand and most importantly, solidify their popularity and [hopefully] longevity in their profession and industry. AND, these sites enable their audience (loyal army of fans) to talk directly back to them. And this is at the heart of the buzz and current shift – and why it’s so very important you read on and learn more.

On the Social Engine Twitter.com, Ashton Kutcher and Ellen Degeneres have more followers (fans) than the entire populations of Ireland, Norway and Panama. Their brand awareness and popularity building is personal, although as that increases, so too does their value to corporations looking for product endorsements to drive their market penetration and increase their market share.

Sporting stars like celebrities have broadened their talent base too, becoming more entrepreneurial and business savvy, seeing their name, brand and product value increase, in many cases, to a higher income level than the actual core sporting talent. In other words, acting, playing a sport, being a comedienne or whatever is their core talent is no longer their only talent. They have embraced the concept of brand building (and protection), marketplace communications and conversations – opting for direct contact via sources like online Social Engines. Here they can touch far more people quicker and easier than say a traditional autograph signing exercise.

A true business woman, leader and entrepreneur, celebrity Oprah Winfrey instantly connects and updates a loyal army of over 2 million+ people that follow her on Twitter. Her power and influence is no surprise or revolution in itself, but her army of followers are able to directly provide instant feedback and ideas to her too -and marketplace feedback is a life blood to your business growth and long term sustainability. (Try ignoring it and see where your business goes.) Everyone wants to be heard and Social Engines give you, your business and your customers a voice.

A loyal army of followers can also provide a viral effect to disseminate information quickly too, meaning they can ‘spread the word for you’ if you ask them to – this can be particularly useful if you want to spread good news and conversely if your brand comes under attack via other mainstream media mechanisms or on the Social Engines themself.

Although it might be hard to fathom, could celebrity entrepreneurs like these be showing more traditional businesses how to connect, behave, build our brand, increase our marketplace value and build our business too using these Social Engines?

Is this a valid idea and model for mainstream business or not?

Firstly, the power of Social Engines extends far beyond Twitter.com alone. Some of the other leading Social Engine sites sprout some pretty impressive visitor and member statistics, as well as services.

Facebook.com – If it was a country rather than a website, it would be the world’s 3rd largest after China and India.

On Facebook there are more than 250 million active users and more than 120 million of them log on to Facebook at least once each day and more than 5 billion minutes are spent on Facebook each day (worldwide). The fastest growing demographic is 35 years old and older and within that, the fastest growing segment is 55-65 year-old females. Do people 35+ and women influence the buying decision for your products and services? This is worthy of your attention.

And there’s more… more than 1 billion pieces of content (web links, news stories, blog posts, notes, photos, etc.) are shared each week on Facebook alone and more than 2.5 million events are created and advertised each month. More than 45 million active user groups exist on the site and more than 50 language translations of that content are available on the site. The people supplying all this content include business owners and professionals, some of whom are surely in your industry and probably your competitors. And if you think because you’re a localised business that this doesn’t count, you’ll find this statistic most enlightening- 70% of Facebook users are outside the United States.

All of those statistics are just for Facebook alone (source Facebook.com/press/statistics).

You can also purchase Pay Per Click and Pay Per Impression advertising on Facebook (and other Social Engines). They take your spend to a whole new level of value and ROI with their member data allowing you to display your adverts for keywords AND additional, specific demographics of the member base. For example you can display your advertising message to women, 55+ in Melbourne who are single. You can even target people specifically on their birthday with a relevant offer.

YouTube.com – take a look at YouTube (which is owned by Google for good reason) – People are watching hundreds of millions of videos a day on YouTube and uploading hundreds of thousands of videos daily. In fact, every minute, ten hours of video is uploaded to YouTube -including promotional videos, education, product consumption/direction videos and client testimonials for business. Plus every video you add to YouTube includes a spot on the webpage where you can put a link back to your website. PLUS you can add these videos to your blog posts, making them more interesting to your blog readers on other Social Engines too (more about blogs in a moment).

YouTube’s user base is broad in age range, 18-55, evenly divided between males and females, and spanning all geographies. Fifty-one percent of users go to YouTube weekly or more often, and 52 percent of 18-34 year-olds share videos often with friends and colleagues.

And could this be the good reason Google brought YouTube? It’s the 2nd largest search engine in the world today, 2nd only to Google.com. If you want to connect with your marketplace on volume, this is worthy of your attention.

Twitter.com – let’s take a statistical look at that quickly too. Twitter’s footprint has expanded impressively in the first half of 2009, reaching 10.7 percent of all active Internet users in June with 83.1% of users over the age of 25. In July 2009, the Twitter website recorded 23,284,395 unique visitors – who else wants to be ‘front-of-mind’ to an audience of that size? Does your target market include people 25+? This is worthy of your attention.

Twitter has been described as the “Pulse of the Planet” given its instant, viral spread-the-word-to-the-world-instantly nature. It has boosted box office numbers and it’s killed them too, just ask the makers of the movie “Bruno” – overnight ticket sales dropped by more than half thanks to the frank and instant feedback from those that had just seen it. It was so quick too because 80% of Twitter usage is on mobile devices. People update anywhere, anytime – imagine what that means for bad customer experiences and you!

Do you let your customers walk away with a bad experience, only to stand out the front of your store or hang up the phone and blast their frustration and disappointment to hundreds, thousands maybe millions of people -in the ‘heat of the moment’?

The true power of Social Engines is not to be feared, it is to be embraced and when done well, you can influence large numbers of people in the ways you want them to know and represent you. This is worthy of your attention.

Understanding the nature of Social Engine participation is important and the question to answer is – What are people doing on these Social Engines? They are looking for ideas, insights, invites, offers, information, inspiration and conversation.

Savvy business owners, entrepreneurs and professionals are providing it all to them and at the same time, in a more passive or softer way than conventional advertising, promoting their business, building their reputation and ultimately getting more leads and customers to their web sites. These business owners, entrepreneurs and professionals are using resources within services like Facebook that include a Personal Profile Page, Business and Product Pages, Fan Clubs, Groups, Time-sensitive Events/Promotions, Classified Advertising (PPC) and more… and the really smart ones are sharing content direct from their website blog feed too (more about that in a moment).

Then there are sites like LinkedIn, a professional social network and directory of business owners and professionals who can communicate quickly and easily with one another. In a 2009 survey, 80% of businesses and companies who are members were using LinkedIn as a primary recruitment tool to find new employees. This is worthy of your attention.

On these Social Engines, people can say what they want about you and it’s uncensored. What do you do about it? Ignore it and hope the customers and prospects that really matter to you don’t see it? Should you take a proactive approach and start by monitoring what’s been said about you and then start providing your brand of information, insights, ideas and inspiration to your marketplace and control the information flow you want through them?

We are living in an era now where what happens in Vegas goes ON and STAYS ON YouTube, Flickr, Twitter, Facebook and more.

“Because of the speed in which social media enables communication, WORD of mouth has become WORLD of mouth.”

Love them or hate them, social engines are here to stay simply because ‘the people’ love them and trust others on them. Facebook and MySpace are among the most popular destinations on the web. And even though they can be extremely annoying, there is one inescapable fact: the most irritating thing about Facebook is the 200m-strong army of people who use it.

And here’s the final enlightening point- Social Engine participation has overtaken pornography as the #1 activity on the Web.

SO Do you get involved or not? And if so, how do you do it easily and cheaply but still ‘play the game’ like a Celebrity with a 2m+ loyal army of followers?

The reality is that even if you’re not involved, your customers and prospects AND competitors probably are – and they’re talking to one another, perhaps about you and without you so the sooner you start, the better chance you have to becoming both a part of the conversation and then lead it.

The answer for businesses, entrepreneurs and professionals is automation – this is the single biggest break-through strategy and tactic that very few people have worked out, including many larger corporations who are successfully using Social Engines but they are not leveraged with automation, also known as things happening ‘auto-magically‘.

In many cases, businesses are employing specialist online staff on top of web masters and advertising/SEO experts. With automation, you can do a whole lot for very little extra time and virtually no money.

HOW DOES IT ALL WORK?

At its essence or core are six words that will transform the way you generate leads and make repeat sales online – those words are YOUR WEBLOG FEED PLUS SOCIAL ENGINES.

A Weblog or blog as it’s more commonly known is a type of website or part of an existing website that allows you to add content as blog posts or articles and display them on your website – content like information, ideas, insights, offers, news, invites, images and more and you can create blog posts quickly and easily without ever needing to get a webmaster to do it for you.

There are over 200,000,000 Blogs online today and that number grows every day. Again, not all blogs and blog owners are equal, many are neglecting to include automation and leverage and integration with Social Engines so there are many nay-sayers about blogging, but that attitude is changing as more people are enlightened.

A Feed or RSS Feed as it’s more commonly known will distribute your blog posts well beyond just displaying them on your website. Feeds permit subscription to regular updates of your blog posts, delivered ‘auto-magically‘ via a web portal, news reader, or in some cases good old email. Feeds also make it possible for your content (information) to be packaged into “widgets,” “gadgets,” mobile devices, and other technologies as shortened or full length messages, which Social Engines happen to LOVE. Your Feed makes it possible to display blog posts just about anywhere on the web or web connected device and most importantly directly to the millions of people online every day.

That means a Blog with an RSS Feed can ‘auto-magically‘ distribute information you create about you, your business, your products and your services quickly and easily across thousands of sites on the web. And you only have to create your pieces of content once!

A blog is a powerful code (invisible to the human, non-techie eye) and every time you add content to an existing or new blog post, like you would add content to a word document, it is distributed around the web in seconds and is fed directly into the biggest marketplaces and communities of people online every day.

What makes a blog with a feed even more powerful is that it reaches the biggest sources of people (leads) online – who by the way are not just using Search Engines anymore to find out about products and services, they are also using the “Social Engines”. PLUS your Blog Feed can also ‘auto-magically‘ update Google and Yahoo about your site too, so you still stay connected with the Search Engines for no more extra work, or money.

Now if you’re anything like me, when I first heard about these Social Engines, I dismissed them as not being a viable business and marketing channel because they appeared to be for personal networking and friendship (and they are indeed used for those reasons). Whilst many businesses, entrepreneurs and professionals are using these engines and winning new business – only a handful are doing it easily and quickly, because most of them do not know about the power of connecting your Weblog RSS Feed and how it fits in with using Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Digg and hundreds more Social Engines.

In my own experience, I was wrong to not get involved with Blogs and Social Engines sooner (like many business owners and professional managers still are) as my competitors began to build an edge I did not have with my marketplace, simply because I did not understand and connect these two key points about connecting your blog directly to Social Engines. If you want to find new customers quickly and easily and build better sales from existing customers:

  1. Your website must be a Blog with a Feed and/or include one as part of your website
  2. Your online marketing mix and strategy must include sharing your blog post information with people on Social Engines like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Digg etc.

And here’s why…

Your competitors have possibly already figured out that social engines are where they can connect with people who include your customers and potential customers because the Social Engines are where your customers and potential customers are going online – and they’re going to these Engines regularly and for long periods of time. And people are making buying decisions based on the conversation they are having and the feedback they are hearing.

Even if you [believe you] have no competition, you’re not connecting with your marketplace as directly and as easily as you can, if you are not using the true power of Social Engines. These online sources or marketplaces attract people 24/7/365, who stay for a while each time. How could you NOT promote you, your business and your products and services there?

Every time you add content to your blog, it is circulated out to many Social Engines, once you set up a FREE account with them… people at these Engines who have an interest in what your business offers then come to your website to find out more.

Here’s an example of how your website Blog, its Feed and these Social Engines work together. (Note this diagram also includes the two largest Search engines -let’s not forget them. Using your Blog and RSS Feed, you can ‘auto-magically’ update them too.)

At the centre of this relationship are your website blog and its RSS Feed. Every time you add content to your blog, the Feed distributes it out to the Social and Search Engines with a link back to your website. People on the Social Engines instantly see a summary of your blog post and a link back to your blog/website. If they are interested in you, they click on the link and follow it back to your website to find out more about you and move forward with you.

“Although we like to feed information to the Search Engines for free listings, the Social Engines outperform them in providing INSTANT, FREE traffic (people) to your website… meaning Social Engines host millions of people live online at any given time who are exposed to your blog post instantly… and not only will they follow your link back to your blog/website if they are interested, they also have the power to make your Feed ‘viral’ – voluntarily passing it on to their friends who in turn pass it on… and so on.

The Social Engines and the people on them help you grow your prospect and customer base quickly, easily and cheaply – you can’t get any cheaper than free!”

The Social Engines are places where people go to and stay at; whereas Search Engines are places people only pass through ‘in search of’ a final site destination. This is the major difference and the significant extra power you’re missing out on if you are not involving your business in the Social Engines. Remember though, the Blog Feed is vital to ensuring your participation is mostly ‘auto-magic’ otherwise participating in them could over run your day, your week and your life!

The Blog Feed allows you to ‘auto-magically‘ update the Social Engines, minimizing the ‘air time’ you personally allocate to this.

So, who’s already taking this seriously and using Social Engines as a powerful, quick, cheap and easy tool and media to generate free leads quickly too?

Firstly, no matter your business, products and services, you’ll find prospects and possibly existing clients already participating in these sites on a regular basis. You are bound to find your competitors there too, it makes good business sense to be present on an Engine where millions of people congregate, converse and seek out people with the products and services they require – someone in your industry is probably joining them and being ‘front-of-mind’ and it should be you.

Everyone that gets it commits to it. These world-wide companies, brands and industry leaders have dedicated resources to connect and cultivate relationships with prospects and clients on the Social Engines with reportable, measurable results:

Motor Vehicle Industry: Chevrolet, Ford, General Motors, Honda

Travel and Tourism Industry: JetBlue, Southwest Airlines, Luxor Las Vegas, Marriott International Hotels and Resorts, Carnival Cruise Lines, Hertz Car Hire

Sporting Teams: Chicago Bulls, Detroit Pistons, Portland Trail Blazers, San Diego Chargers

Entertainment: 92Y, The Travel Channel, ComCast, Marvel Entertainment, Direct TV, Pop Caps, TV Guide

Finance: Wachovia, H&R Block, Intuit

Retail: Best Buy, The Home Depot, American Apparel, Rubbermaid, Whole Foods, Zappos.com

Food and Beverage: Starbucks, Burger King, Dunkin Donuts, Popeye’s Chicken, Tastidlite, Kraft Foods (see Vegemite Case Study below)

Other Global brands: Dell Computers, EMC and Kodak – all benefitting by directly connecting with their target marketplace – whether that’s existing customers and/or potential customers.

Case Study:

Kraft Foods have taken an interesting Corporation-Consumer collaborative approach to product promotion and development using Social Engines. Here’s what they say about their social engine strategy:

For many of our strong brands such as Vegemite – we acknowledged that we are simply (proud) brand custodians and that the brand is owned by ‘the people’. We focused our first two years of social engine participation on simply listening and asking questions.

Two of these questions were:

  1. How do you individually like your Vegemite?
  2. If there ever was to be a Vegemite variation what would this be?

Recently Kraft launched their latest product “Name me” a vegemite plus cream cheese experience. Here’s how they are using Social Engines to develop it.

“This is a work in progress; we spent two years listening and now with the product on shelves the Kraft Communications team is engaging with Vegemite loyalists and cynics alike on the 12 top social engines. They are engaging and getting samples out on and off line- and encouraging debate on the new products. There are a number of Facebook groups sitting in the following camps: pro original, pro new flavour and anti new flavour.”

This is just one way Social Engines are helping businesses already to grow brand, product and corporate awareness. There are many other ways to use it too that can and do lead to direct and immediate sales. No matter the size of your business and marketplace, Social Engines, like the internet at large give you a level playing field with industry leaders like Kraft Foods and the others mentioned here.

Your website with a blog and feed will provide regular content to the Social Engines ‘auto-magically’. You need to support that by also visiting the main Social Engines and engaging people on a weekly basis, as it forms part of your marketing, CRM and all the other pay-offs mentioned previously.

Adding content regularly to your Blog Feed, ‘auto-magically‘ keeps you in touch and front of mind to millions of people around the world, on the Social Engines (and Search Engines) so they can access your business, products and services quickly and easily.

The buzz appears to be more than a fad so for your business it becomes not a question of ‘if’ these Social Engines are going to be a valuable marketing tool for business. Rather, the question now is:

“How quickly will you get your business on the Social Engines

… to Capture Your Competitors Clients too?”

HOW TO GET STARTED

Here’s a checklist to help you get started with your new, exciting and FREE Social Engine Strategy:

1) Get a Blog website with a domain name of your choice OR if you already have a website, get a new sub domain or folder added called blog

2) Open an account with at Google, Feedburner, Yahoo, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Digg, and LinkedIn.

3) Install an RSS Blog Feed and set up a Pinging list on it then add your Blog feed to the Search and Social Engine accounts you created in the step above.

4) Create content-rich education videos that can be added to your YouTube account and your Blog – that is then ‘auto-magically‘ added to your Search and Social Engine accounts.

5) Actively participate in or create new Facebook Groups, Events and Pages.

6) Make promotional videos about you, your business, your products, how you help and support people and upload them to your YouTube Channel then add them to your blog posts.

To really make this all work well for you, you need to know there is a big secret in succeeding with growing your business using Social Engines. You’ve read this far, so here it is: Social Engine success rest largely with you getting to grips with:

  1. Being a ‘face’ of your business and allowing people to connect with your ‘authenticity’ as a person ahead of a product, and
  2. the need to ‘listen’ to your marketplace, innovate with change to meet their ever-changing needs and then share information that will help them, rather than push product.

Millions of dollars are spent monthly with pay per click advertising on these sites and more millions are paid to ‘search engine specialists’ who supposedly help you reach number 1 ranking on keywords relevant to your business. It’s a fierce fight between serious players for top spots on search engines, both free and paid listings. An entire industry is built on it and around it. But you now know how to become a leader in your industry on the most powerful Social (and Search) Engines online today and how to do it Quickly, Cheaply, Easily and Auto-Magically.

In some cases, target market demographics may not be using Social Engines; therefore it would not be worthwhile. Consider these statistics when making your evaluation:

78% of consumers trust peer recommendations. Do you rely on 3rd party endorsements to build buyer confidence? If this is not a necessary part of your marketing and sale process, you may be able to ignore Social Engine Marketing.

Successful companies in social media act more like Dale Carnegie and less like David Ogilvy – Listening first, selling second. Would your competitors be prepared to connect and listen to your prospects and customers directly to discover what they want, and then give it to them? If not, then you may be able to ignore Social Engine Marketing… and least for a little while.

The worst part is the first part. When you start, your ‘following’ could be small but that is far better than not monitoring what’s been said about you at all! The only way to change that is to get in the game!

Get started right now, before your competitors do -it’s the future of marketing your business online, because that is where the people you want as your customers are going online. It’s only a matter of time before someone in your industry emerges as the leader on the Social Engines – get you and your business front-of-mind first. Enjoy the experience and I’ll ‘meet and tweet you’ on the Social Engines of the World!

Jennie Armato is known as “The Godmother of Web Success” having mentored and coached thousands of entrepreneurs around the world since 2004 to create your ultimate business and lifestyle using the true power of the internet.

A Business Model That Keeps on Giving

August 9, 2017

Entertainment and enterpreneur

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If there were an Entrepreneur’s Hall of Fame, Wayne Huizenga would be a charter member. Most people recognize the Wayne Huizenga as being the former owner of the Florida Marlins baseball team, and the current owner of the National Football League’s Miami Dolphins. These are the types of gaudy baubles a billionaire entrepreneur collects. However, his success came from the most elemental business: trash hauling.

Mr. Huizenga started as a small time cartage operator for a waste disposal firm in south Florida. He worked his way into sales and ultimately bought a small firm. In the 1960’s waste disposal was a local, independent, mom and pop type of business in the United States as well as in most industrialized countries. There was no scale. Each trash removal firm worked on contracts negotiated with local governments. There was always the fear of political winds changing and effecting a contractors future status.

From his perspective as a small time operator in a highly fragmented industry, Wayne Huizenga knew that he needed a safety net, not wanting to be tied to a sole municipality for his firm’s sustenance. His idea was elegantly simple: he would build a national firm, with appropriate leverage and economies of scale, by buying up key independent garbage hauling firms in strategically important markets. This would provide the strength to expand in every secondary market and standardize this formerly sclerotic industry.

This idea evolved into Waste Management. Mr. Huizenga became a billionaire when his firm, after ascending to the number one spot as an international garbage-hauling firm, with contracts spanning the United States, Europe and Asia, was listed on the New York Stock Exchange. The simple idea of consolidating hundreds of independent firms under one roof and standardizing the service menu was a thoroughly disruptive new business model. Former owners for these independent businesses were induced to sell by offers of stock, options and management contracts.

With a billion dollars in hand, Mr. Huizenga could have retired and collected art, cars, coins or stamps. He could have hung out with the idle rich. Instead, he applied the business model that created Waste Management to a completely different business category: home entertainment. In the 1970’s, with the market introduction of first beta-max, and subsequently VHS technology, and then the rapid descent of retail pricing for home video players, thousands of independent retail stores popped up offering video for rent. The ability to rent a popular movie tape and play it when desired in the comfort of one’s home, was a huge change in behavior and in the method of delivering entertainment to the masses.

Wayne Huizenga was restless, looking for a new challenge and open to any opportunity that offered huge potential upside rewards. He saw it in a small, but growing firm: Blockbuster Video. Today, the consumer recognizes the Blockbuster brand as a generic term for home entertainment. 25 years ago, Blockbuster was one of a handful of movie rental chains, several sold franchises to fuel growth, all were regional, struggling for capital to fund expansion, and competing against locally owned stores. The same fragmented industry distribution channels that existed in the garbage removal business were immediately obvious to Wayne Huizenga. He pounced.

After purchasing Blockbuster Video, Mr. Huizenga began the same type of assimilation program he pursued with Waste Management. Small, local video rental chains were purchased. The Company was listed on the New York Stock Exchange and the funds raised fueled a rapid expansion. The leverage and muscle that Blockbuster gained was utilized in purchasing product from the major Hollywood studios at more favorable terms than any competitor could negotiate. Small locally owned stores could not compete and thousands closed, creating more expansion opportunities for Blockbuster.

Blockbuster Video became a growth company with a huge following on Wall Street. Mr. Huizenga had replicated the success of Waste Management in a completely different industry. While Blockbuster was at its apex, he sold the business to Viacom. Hauling garbage is a highly needed, but largely unappreciated service. Renting movies is a service that is less important, but much more desired by the public. The same business model worked perfectly in two totally opposite areas of opportunity.

Blockbuster Video and Waste Management made Wayne Huizenga one of the most recognizable and successful entrepreneurs of the 20th century. Most people with but a small slice of this type of achievement would be completely satisfied and content. Not so with Wayne Huizenga!

Seeking another fragmented industry, where the opportunity to roll-up local and regional outlets would enable repetition of the Blockbuster Video and Waste Management successes lead Mr. Huizenga to the world of used car sales and marketing. He immediately recognized the same dysfunctional market forces, absence of scalability and pricing inefficiencies so readily apparent in the video rental and garbage hauling business.

During the 1990’s auto leasing became wildly popular. These cars are leased for a set term, typically returned with average or below average miles and dealer maintained. The problem for the automobile industry was, and is, the inventory glut that occurs as leased cars are returned. This created a unique opportunity for Wayne Huizenga and his favorite business model.

He launched Auto Nation with a public sale of equity on the New York Stock Exchange. Today, Auto Nation is the largest seller of late model used cars in the world. Inventory is vast, offering virtually every popular model in great depth and variety. The scale and national reach of Auto Nation, enables pricing to be very sharp, almost always significantly lower than local dealers. In addition, all prices are non-negotiable and fixed, eliminating one of the major negatives to purchasing a car, haggling over price.

Three times, in three totally differing industries, Wayne Huizenga has applied a uniquely disruptive business model that has streamlined sluggish, non-dynamic business categories. He started very small. He thought very big. This is a perfect template for every prospective entrepreneur to study and utilize. A version of this strategy is often customized and applied to industry specific opportunities. This can be performed on a local, regional, national or international basis.

Entrepreneurial business models come in unlimited varieties. There is no single, linear textbook approach that fits unilaterally for every project. The entrepreneur that will customize a strategy offering beneficial disruptive features applicable to their product has the greatest potential for huge rewards. Innovate, create, and think outside of the box: the marketplace has an unquenchable thirst for new, different, exciting products and business models.

Geoff Ficke has been a serial entrepreneur for almost 50 years. As a small boy, earning his spending money doing odd jobs in the neighborhood, he learned the value of selling himself, offering service and value for money.

After putting himself through the University of Kentucky (B.A. Broadcast Journalism, 1969) and serving in the United States Marine Corp, Mr. Ficke commenced a career in the cosmetic industry. After rising to National Sales Manager for Vidal Sassoon Hair Care at age 28, he then launched a number of ventures, including Rubigo Cosmetics, Parfums Pierre Wulff Paris, Le Bain Couture and Fashion Fragrance.

Economic Conditions and Trends of the Walt Disney Company

August 9, 2017

Entertainment and enterpreneur

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With the economy remaining The Walt Disney Company’s largest threat, the recent turmoil in the financial markets has adversely affected the economic activity in the United States and other regions of the world in which Disney conducts business, and has affected demand for some of Disney’s products and services. A continued decline in economic activity could adversely affect demand for any of their businesses, thus reducing their overall revenue and earnings. A sustained decline in economic conditions could reduce attendance and spending at one or more of Disney’s parks and resorts, purchase of or prices for advertising on broadcast or cable networks or owned stations, prices that Cable Service Providers will pay for cable programming, performance of their theatrical and home entertainment releases, and purchases of Company-branded consumer products. These conditions could also impair the ability of those with whom Disney does business to satisfy their obligations to Disney.

Changes in exchange rates for foreign currencies may also reduce international demand for their products, increase the labor or supply costs in non-United States markets, or reduce the United States dollar value of revenue received from other markets.

Cultural and social values and trends

Each of Disney’s businesses creates entertainment or consumer products whose success depends substantially on consumer tastes and preferences that change in often unpredictable ways. The success of their businesses depends on their ability to consistently create and distribute filmed entertainment, broadcast and cable programming, online material, electronic games, theme park attractions, hotels and other resort facilities and consumer products that meet the changing preferences of the broad consumer market. Many of Disney’s businesses increasingly depend on worldwide acceptance of their offerings and products outside the United States, and the success of these offerings therefore depends on Disney’s ability to successfully predict and adapt to changing consumer tastes and preferences outside as well as inside the United States.

For example:

  • The success of Disney’s offerings in the home entertainment market depends in part on consumer preferences with respect to home entertainment formats, including DVD players and personal video recorders, as well as the availability of alternative home entertainment offerings and technologies, including web-based delivery of entertainment offerings.
  • Technological developments offer consumers an expanding array of entertainment options and if consumers favor options that Disney has not yet fully developed rather than the entertainment products they do offer, their sales may be adversely affected.

Political and legal issues

The success of Disney’s businesses is highly dependent on maintenance of intellectual property rights in the entertainment products and services they create. New technologies such as the convergence of computing, communication, and entertainment devices, the falling prices of devices incorporating such technologies, and increased broadband internet speed and penetration have made the unauthorized digital copying and distribution of their films, television productions and other creative works easier and faster and enforcement of intellectual property rights more challenging. The unauthorized use of intellectual property rights in the entertainment industry is a significant and rapidly growing phenomenon. These developments require Disney to devote substantial resources to protecting their intellectual property against unauthorized use and present the risk of increased losses of revenue as a result of unauthorized digital distribution of their content and sales of unauthorized DVDs and other counterfeit products.

Podcast Rocks Everybody and Is Making Lots of Money

August 9, 2017

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What happened to the radio? Fewer people are listening to the radio, and the disc jockeys are improving all the time. Entertainment over the radio is on an all time high, but the public seems to look for an alternative to the radio.

Where are the masses going to? Let me tell you a little secret. It is known in the industry as the Great Podcast Renaissance. 2015 is going to explode with audio content, especially podcasting.

Listeners are getting busier and busier and do not have time to sit in front of the television. They want entertainment on the run.

Podcast rocks because the listeners can listen to podcasts on demand anywhere, whether they are in the gym, commuting to and from work on the train, travelling in the car, cleaning the house, or just lazing around.

The only device necessary to listen to your favorite podcast is a smart phone, tab, iPhone, iPod, or android unit. The choice the listener has is to stream the digital audio file or to download and store it on the device in mp3 format.

The listener can listen to whatever they want to listen to, not a program controller at a radio station’s choice. Furthermore, you can listen when you want to listen to the digital audio file, unlike the radio which has a set time for every program.

What used to irritate me is that when there is a talk show and it is just getting interesting, suddenly it stops because time has run out. Ever so rude the announcer will mumble a few words you can not hear and that is the end.

Indirectly podcasting can make you lots of money. If you give your audience great podcasts with good content, your audience numbers will grow and in turn reveal you to more and more listeners. Opportunities will start knocking at your door, for instance you will appear as a guest speaker at more TV and radio shows.

You can start selling your most popular digital audio file series. Give the listeners a live show where you sell tickets. This will really be fun.

Advertising is another great way of making money. Combine a digital audio file with a website. Start selling products related to webcasts, like a Webinar on how to become a great Podcaster or an e-book on the greatest podcast shows and their Case Studies.

Publish your own webcasts on your blog which in turn will bring you more traffic. More opportunities will arise to make money.

The sheer pressure of your audience will lead you to new heights and the audience will show you what they want. Be very sensitive to their needs.

Social Media and Brand Communications

August 9, 2017

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Brand Communications – test of retention rate

We are constantly surrounded by brands. Everywhere we look we can see brands but how much of the brand communication is retained by our minds? What is the recall rate?

Here’s a simple test I always follow

  • Did you read today’s morning newspaper?
  • Tell us what section did you read? News / sports / Entertainment / Classified?
  • Which sections do you usually read?
  • Do you remember the name of at least one brand that you saw in today’s newspaper. Which one is it?
  • Do you remember a brand that you saw last evening on TV? Which one is it?
  • Name a brand you saw on some outdoor media while coming to this Conference. Which one is it?
  • Do you remember any celebrity name associated with the brand?

A simple test of brand retention would tell us that only the big brands who can afford to run a 360 degree multimedia ad campaign are retained in people’s mind. In addition celebrity endorsement also plays a big role. Traditionally, only the large businesses have been able to hire an ad agency or PR agency and run such advertisement and brand building campaigns. The entities in the small and medium (SME) sector, solo entrepreneurs, start-ups on the other hand have always used means like pamphlets and flier distributions, newspaper ads or networking and word of mouth marketing.

With internet and social media everything is changing. Social media is a digital version of the good old word-of-mouth marketing. Today, social media is the most easy and cost effective means of communication.

Definition

To simply define, ‘social media’ is a collection of simple, easy to learn and adapt, freely available internet based tools and platforms that can be used to reach out to a worldwide audience. The defining factor about social media is the ‘ability to establish real time dialogue in multimedia formats.’ Traditional media like Ad films, Radio, TV, Newspapers, outdoor hoardings, corporate websites are all one way medium. On the other hand social media tools like blogs, social networks, picture and video sharing enables two way communications which is friendly, open and democratic and simply put, ‘social.’

But ‘cost effective’ is not the only factor

We should not talk about social media just being cost effective. That sounds like social media is relevant only for those segments of entrepreneurs who cannot afford mainstream media brand communication. No, it’s not a case of “grapes are sour.” It is not just about the money, had that been the case these top most brands in India wouldn’t have joined the Social Media bandwagon.

Even NASA uses social networks as a matter of fact it does a pretty good job at it. Surely an entity like NASA would not be here if they didn’t see that cost effective or not social media offers a whole new kind of brand communication that has never been possible using any other form of traditional media.

So why is everybody joining social media?

Because of the revolutionary magical difference between traditional media and social media – the ability to establish a dialogue with, listen and respond to the consumers whenever, wherever and in whichever format.

  • Real Time
  • Two way communication
  • Longer shelf life

Every brand has a story; every entrepreneur has a story, a cause a mission with which they start. Social media gives the brand an ability to tell their stories.

The Social Consumers

The number of internet users in India has crossed 100 million this September. It is predicted that in 2 years India would overtake United States in being the largest country to be on internet. There are currently 38 million Indians on Facebook. This large number of people are the social consumers.

Social consumers are different from traditional consumers in that they no longer take purchase decisions by simply watching a TV commercial or outdoor hoarding or newspaper ad. They want more from a brand. It is no longer enough to tell, “We made this cream, if you apply it, you would become fair.” The social now wants to know – How and why I would become fair? Who else have become fair? What were their experiences during the process?

So how to connect to social consumers

The social consumers go to their respective social networks to find out about a brand and then make a purchase. They go with the brand that extends a friendly hand towards them, a brand that shares its stories heart to heart with the consumers.

A brand can achieve that only by being present on the social networks, using the same tools and platforms that the consumers are using for their day to day communications. The brand has to rise over the same old sales and target oriented greed and have to show love and respect for the consumers. They have to show that they care to listen and respond that they are sporting enough to handle negative remarks with dignity.

3 Tips for Launching a Successful Business in Music

August 9, 2017

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1. Know Your Audience

It might seem like trite advice. But if you don’t take the time to understand your audience, you could end up:

  • Spending years building a business that appeals to very few people or no one at all.
  • Wasting time and money that could have been better spent elsewhere.
  • Missing out on profitable opportunities that are right in front of your eyes.

Who are you selling to? Why do they need your solution? What makes you unique and different from the other businesses available?

If you can’t answer these questions in a direct, specific way, you may not be ready to launch into business just yet.

For instance, think about musicians. If your business is built around selling products or services to musicians, you must realize that they don’t have a lot of money, and without a compelling offer, you’re not going to get them to take their hard-earned money and spend it with you.

2. Build Trust & Add Value

Many business owners aren’t looking at long-term prospects. Instead, they make many shortsighted decisions and mistakes that cost them credibility and profit.

Unless your offer is unique, different, or compelling in some way, it’s better to think of business as an exercise in building trust incrementally over time – not in days, months, or even weeks, but in years!

Launch a content marketing program. Publish new, value-adding content on a regular basis for your readers and prospects. Equip them with the knowledge they need so they begin to see you as the authority in your industry.

There are many ways to take a long-term approach besides with content marketing, but whatever it is, it should be an ongoing program that enables communication between you and your prospects, as opposed to a one-time campaign that only serves to drive attention to your business temporarily.

3. Stick To What You’re Good At

Many businesses try their hand at line extensions and diversification programs, only to fail or lose their footing in their market. This is because of the 80/20 rule, which states that you’ll get 80% of your results from 20% of your effort.

Initially, generating business is often a process of experimentation. You’ll try many different approaches to the same problem until you figure out something that works. But once you’ve found your footing, it’s better to focus on what you’re good at instead of branching out.

CD Baby is not looking to launch an app for this very reason – they want to make sure they continue to offer the best service possible in their chosen field of music distribution.

Aquarius (The Water Carrier) January 21 to February 19

August 9, 2017

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A zodiacal constellation between Capricorn and Pisces and the eleventh sign of zodiac in astrology.

Aquarians are basically objective, friendly, progressive, humanitarian, futuristic, honest, tolerant, independent, inventive, unpredictable, intellectual and possesses very attractive personality. At some places, they are unemotional and detached too, we can call these habits their worst qualities. The Aquarians have two sorts of personalities, one is shy, gentle, sensitive and patient and other phase is lively and exhibitionist. This star possesses a lot of good qualities but a very few drawbacks in personality. Aquarians are very forceful having strong convictions and their also will power is very strong.

They are very honest in their statements, even if they do some mistake, they admit and accept it.

The very common habits in both types of Aquarians are that they are frank, serious minded, idealistic, active, tempered, sensible, refined, express themselves with reason, clear and logical, self-assertive, friendly, concise and always intelligent.

Both phases of Aquarians like to become temporary loners. They love to be independent and never follow even do not like to be interfered.

Aquarians have interest and a good taste in music, art and drama and gifted in drama and especially arts. They do not make friends easily but love to help humanity.

One of the most uncommon qualities which Aquarians possess is that their judgment of human nature is excellent and this habit helps them in choosing their friends and love. Scarifies everything for their loved ones, their emotions get hurt very easily because due to a good perfection in their personality, they expect everything ideally. Aquarians never shout very easily in their anger or grief but once they leave someone, and then never talk to that person for the lifetime.

In group projects Aquarians work best if given a leading part. They have a unique desire of knowledge as they learn by observing things. They are also very good entertainers as they can talk on any topic and entertain every kind of a person.

Aquarians have a very sensitive nature, so become depressed. They like fighting for a cause, planning and dreaming for the future, having fun, thinking about the past issues but dislike excessive loneliness, imitations and fake promises.

The Aquarians are called water bearer as it is symbolized as nourishing the earth with life giving energies. Here we find innovation, individuality and themes of change.

Favorite color of Aquarians is TURQUOISE

Star stone is AMETHYST

Flowers are WHITE ORCHID and POPPY AND NIGHTSHADE

Aquarians are very brainy, brilliant and visionary as they see so far that they leave their present behind. They approach life in a cool and an independent way.

They are not emotional, in fact, ignore their feelings and give priority to get best result by their idea. Try their level best to achieve goals as they have a business approach and socially progressive due to theoretical, strongly imaginative, philosophical, devoted to work and spiritual nature.

Aquarians are multi-talented, self-expressive, invite attention and prove their ideas as they are full of inspiration.

As far as food is concerned, the best food for the Aquarians is light food.

They are independent in their style, they do what they like for themselves, love to look and be different and unique, use all those things which are surprising an unexpected. They are art lovers for their pastime. They like to cook as well.

The best match is Libra and worst is Cancer. They are happy to be alone and emotionally cool but these bad habits sometimes create problems, they feel that emotions tie them down as commitments and as they love to be independent, so mostly avoid the things which bound them.

Excellent problem solver and good entrepreneurs and never lose hope, in fact overcome the negative issues very easily. Fixed in opinion and justify their actions and once they take decision, they wait confidently for its positive results in spite of facing many hurdles. They have a big thirst of knowledge and very observant. Love to see people’s point of view. For Aquarians, life is the study of people.

Aquarians are very sincere natured and very loyal to the one they love, but in romantic relationship, keep a bit distance to be balanced with their independence too. They are liked by the people due to their wise, sincere, clear, perspective, futuristic, tolerant and a unique nature.

5 Things You Need to Know About TS Eliot

August 9, 2017

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Thomas Stearns Eliot, born to a successful entrepreneur Henry Ware Eliot in the year 1888, was a remarkable poet, literary critic and dramatist. He was born in St. Louis, Missouri, United States on September 26. Eliot came as an immigrant to the United Kingdom at the age of 25 (in the year 1914) and acquired British citizenship in the year 1927. However, he never favored one nation of the two and had equal liking to New England and the Southwest. For his outstanding contributions to the world of poetry, Eliot was awarded Nobel Prize in 1948.The Waste Land, The Love song of J. Alfred Prufrock, The Hollow Men, etc. are the most prolific amongst his poems. There is a lot to know about T.S. Eliot and here are the 5 interesting facts people should know about him.

1) Friendship with Ezra Pound – The meeting of Pound and Eliot took place in Europe during 1914 and immediate friendship grew between them as both were exiles with great interest in arts.Before that, Eliot wandered many places to get his “Prufrock” published, but was rejected. In the year 1915, Ezra Pound suggested Harriet Monroe the founder of Poetry Magazine to publish the poem. The conversations, letters, poems and essays that have flown between them are considered as the driving force for Modernism.

2) First marriage & The Waste Land – On June 26, 1915 T.S. Eliot married Vivienne Haigh-Wood; unfortunately, the marriage didn’t turn out to be a happy union as she suffered from frequent migraines, insomnia, colitis, fatigue, high temperature along with mental instability. Eliot had to suffer mentally by looking at her wife constantly visiting doctors and he stated that the torment he felt during those has encouraged him to write “The Waste Land”.

3) Captain – Lyndall Gordon, the biographer of Eliot in the book “T.S. Eliot: A Modern Life”, writes about a fascinating behavior of Eliot.During the early parts of the 1920s, there were two hideaways for Eliot one at Charing Cross Road and the other at St. Martin’s Lane. When he was in the former, he only responded when people called him “The Captain” and when he was in the latter, he only responded when people called him “Captain Eliot”.

4) Faber & Faber – Eliot was considered a practical joker while working at Faber & Faber. This was due to his behavior during a board meeting where he placed firecrackers between the legs of the chairman and set them off. Furthermore, he greeted the authors with whoopee cushions on the chairs and offering explosive cigars.

5) Anti-Semitism – Is T.S. Eliot a hater of Jews? There are many literary critics like Harold Bloom, George Steiner, James Fenton, Christopher Ricks, and James Fenton, who criticized Eliot of adopting anti-Semitic elements in his works. Anthony Julius in his work “T.S. Eliot, Anti-Semitism, and Literary Form revealed the comparison of Jews with rats in the poem “Burbank with a Baedeker: Bleistein with a Cigar”.

T.S. Eliot, considered as the most enigmatic figure of his age, died on January 4, 1965, in his Kensington home, London. The man who effectively delivered a lecture to 13,523 people at the University of Minnesota became silent forever because of emphysema, but his works will forever remain inspirational and influential.

More Real-Life Proof that Being an Intelligent Jack of Many Trades, Can Make You Succeed More Often

August 9, 2017

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To Every Rule In Life, There Will Always Be One (or More) Exception(s)

It is not good to be a Jack of All trades. Well, that’s probably true. But what about being an Intelligent Jack of Many Trades™? The Jack Of Many Trades™ I speak about is what Tom Gorman calls a “Multipreneur” in his book – titled “Multipreneuring: (1) Using a variety of skills and a series of careers to succeed (2) The Hottest Career Strategy For Success In The 1990s – and Beyond” (More about this book below).

Some entrepreneurs who achieved their successes many years ago, believe that the strategies they used back then will continue to work today, and in the future. Well, maybe…but maybe not! Things have changed, and keep changing constantly – a whole lot too.

Considering the rapid pace of technology/information-driven changes occurring today, a strategy that worked five years ago may – or may NOT – be so successful today.

TIP: Depending on the type of venture you embark upon as a new-idea or established start-up, you may need to come to the market place with a variety of marketable skills in order to survive. Those skills will enable you generate additional income streams that can help you maintain optimal levels of profitability during periods when business is slow for everyone due to economic fluctuations or other reasons.

My Multi-Disciplinary Approach To Entrepreneuring

Early on in my start-up days, I adopted what I called a multidisciplinary approach to entrepreneuring due to combined factors of interest and necessity. The latter arose when I found the response to my Self-Development work(Talks, Seminars, and Workshops) at the time, though positive, a bit “slow”.

So I concentrated on creating additional income-earning opportunities using other skills I had (and/or progressively acquired) such as custom spreadsheet solutions development, web design, and freelance writing. In doing this, I was however conscious of the fact that some people would suggest that I was a “Jack of all trades” kind of person. But having always been very versatile, with a natural aptitude for multi-skilling, I was quite convinced that what I had in mind could be done.

At a point, following repeated encounters with people who questioned the wisdom of this approach, I decided to find out if any other entrepreneurs had experienced a similar need to mine. So, I read book after book on business and Entrepreneuring. I also did a search using the word “Multipreneuring” at http://www.google.com.

It was especially through the search results I obtained, that I discovered a huge world of Multipreneurs. I learnt that some were self-employed, while others could be found in paid employment.

a). Take for instance, Ken Gaebler (www.gaebler.com), who about 3 years ago started up three different companies (business incubator, holding company and venture capital). On his website in March 2003, Ken had an article titled “Entrepreneurial Evolution” in which he explained why he became a Multipreneur by starting up three different companies at the same time.

One reason he gave that struck me as instructive was the idea that if a person’s chances of succeeding in business are one out of three, then it only makes good business sense to start three companies, so you can be sure of making a success of at least one of them. In his estimation, even though there were disadvantages to starting up a business this way, it still made plenty of sense to do it. I could not have agreed more with him!

A visit to Gaebler’s website(www.gaebler.com) today will show that he is making progress in the pursuit of his vision.

b). On the net, I also came across Tom Gorman’s book titled “Multipreneuring: (1) Using a variety of skills and a series of careers to succeed (2) The Hottest Career Strategy For Success In The 1990s – and Beyond”. (Last time I checked, the book retailed for about $11.00 US Dollars on Amazon.com). Gorman – himself a Multipreneur – is described as having worked variously as corporate consultant, commercial banker, executive recruiter and writer. This gives the reader further proof that what his book advocates works.

Useful Answers Given By Three Accomplished Persons/Book Authors

a). Herman Holtz(who passed on in Feb. 2001) was widely regarded one of the world’s most successful Independent Consultants with over 3 decades of experience. He was often described as a Consultant’s Consultant. In his book “The Concise Guide To Becoming An Independent Consultant“(John Wiley and Sons, Inc, 1999), Holtz confessed that he had been personally acquainted with certain “exceptional individuals” who had adopted versatility as their answer to the consultant’s need to specialise.

According to him, one such individual boasted up to twelve(12)! different resumes. Depending on the specific requirements for different consulting project opportunities he identified, he would simply send in the most suited resume! The best part for me : Holtz testified that NONE of the resumes used by these individuals gave false testimonies of their ability to competently perform widely differing tasks for their clients at a professional fee.

b). James Cook in his book “The Start-up Entrepreneur”, apparently also appreciated the reality that frequently faces start-up entrepreneurs(though he did not use the term “Multipreneuring”), when he stated that most entrepreneurs are unlikely to find success by sticking to a single venture or line of business till they succeed. In fact he warned that the startup entrepreneur may find need to change the direction in which s/he continues often, possibly with each failure recorded, assuring however that those who persevere will inevitably succeed.

To buttress his point, Cook provided interesting historical details such as the fact that Henry Ford originally intended to make a tractor, while Edison first invented a telegraph machine (in 1962). From my internet research into the life of
Thomas Edison, I can also add that he followed the telegraph machine with an Electric Vote Recorder which was a commercial failure – making him vow he would not waste time inventing things that no one wanted.

c). When Robert G. Allen wrote about “Multiple Streams of Income”, he did not exactly say people had to become Multipreneurs. But he implied it – because he was challenging people to reduce the risk arising from depending on one income source(which could be disrupted at any time) by spreading their sources of income generation from one to many.

Discovering The Term “Multipreneuring”

Ironically, even though I was already functioning as one when I was starting up, I did not know there were actually people called Multipreneurs. Luckily for me, an acquaintance who was a senior manager in a financial training services delivery organisation was to “educate” me about the proper term for what I was doing, as one who “wears many hats”. After listening to me talk about my multi-disciplinary approach, he asked me what one word I believed could be used to describe me based on all that I had told him.

When I had finished rambling about being an “Educator/Information Broker bringing useful Self-Development information to people of various backgrounds/needs”(I did not have an elevator speech at the time), he said “I have one name that I think describes you very well in terms of what you do, and which I want you to start using from today”. He then asked for my pen and wrote on a sheet of paper, exactly as follows: “Tayo Solagbade is a MULTIPRENEUR.” That was the first time I saw the word!

Multipreneurs In Business(Why Are More And More Companies Diversifying?)

In business, I would define a Multipreneur as an individual who intelligently combines a variety of (sometimes self-taught) marketable skills to earn income as the opportunities present themselves in the market place.

Have you noticed the trend over the past decade or so? Many well known and established businesses, have gradually begun to “add” other specialties to the menu they offer their customers. Then there are those that have always been biased towards having multiple competencies, and are now being vindicated for being that way.

A good example of the latter is General Electric – who, as if determined to ensure critics do not dismiss it as a “coincidence” use the tagline “What GE does and makes touches everyone“. THAT’s a Multipreneurial company! And they have been extremely successfully in their Jack Of Many Trades approach – which is why Jack Welch achieved the legendary status he did for providing leadership that made it work.

There was a time when SONY as a company was not considered a force to reckon with in the digital/Internet world. Most people never even “saw” a role for the company to play in that arena. Thankfully for the company, its leadership was a ‘thinking” one: they “saw” into the future, and knew that to gain greater access into people’s homes as an entertainment manufacturing company, they needed to use the cheapest and most far-reaching marketing resources available.

The Internet was unique in that it offered all the convenience, and affordability they sought to take advantage of – while it provided an excellent medium through which to launch a new breed of products that today has captured a larger audience than they could ever have imagined.

The success of Sony’s PlayStation is but one example.(Then of course there was the move, before Playstation, into Laptops manufacturing with the Introduction of the VAIO series).

An Intelligent Jack Of Many Trades does NOT acquire new competencies impulsively of for the sake of it. S/he (whether as individual or company) will define a clear vision, and will then consider what option(s) for pursuing it successfully are available. A decision about the most appropriate line(s) of action to adopt is what eventually, among other things, would necessitate developing new competencies that complement each other towards accomplishment of the ultimate goal or vision.

Everything Sony has done as a company has further strengthened it’s ability to make in-roads into people’s home as a provider of entertainment resources. By adopting new approaches that recognise changing technology and especially the Internet, Sony has been able to not only keep the interest and attention of old customers but also expanded its customer base to capture increasingly younger people – those excited by the world of computer gaming software, Internet technology, Virtual reality etc. The result has been phenomenal market place success – internationally.

Any company that wants to enjoy continued relevance, and sustainable long term success(like those I mentioned above), will need to think in multipreneurial terms daily, else s/he will become obsolete. A close look at the trend of mergers and acquisitions, and the broadening of products and services offerings by many companies today suggest that the leadership of many businesses already appreciate the importance of thinking this way.

It is my opinion that entrepreneurs in the 21st century and beyond, will need to – intelligently – operate adaptable entrepreneurial ventures that can generate multiple sustainable income streams for themselves. Only by so doing, will they be able to effectively cope with the unpredictability of the fast-changing, technology-driven markets of their societies – now and in the future. In other words, through Multipreneuring, they will be able to cushion their businesses against negative turns that might result from unexpected changes in demand for some of their key products and/or services over time.

Multipreneurs In Paid Employment

We also have people in paid employment who are Multipreneurs. Like their self-employed counterparts, they often “wear many hats”. I describe them as individuals who intelligently combine their(sometimes self-taught) skills in a variety of related fields to deliver desired results(often beyond their job requirements) to employers. The reality (do a search on the net with “Multipreneur” and see what you get) is that today’s businesses/employers need such people more and more.

Companies are trying to find and retain individuals who are versatile and able to carry on a variety of tasks efficiently. As I said in my article titled “How to make yourself UNRETRENCHABLE”, any employee who can demonstrate, repeatedly and convincingly, the ability to competently do the job of two(2) or more people will make it less likely for his company to want to let go of (talks less retrench) him/her.

In the brewery where I once worked, multi-skilling (a process where each staff was progressively trained to be able to operate every single plant/machine in a manufacturing process) was a very important part of staff training and development. This method made it possible to optimise production output regardless of unexpected absenteeism, retirements, transfers etc. Depending on the areas of work, and the organisational skills of the duty Shift Manager, one operator/staff could be made to competently operate two or more machines during such “tight” periods.

In fact, whenever the time came for staff promotions and/or secondments to be decided, one of the key considerations was the multi-skilling ability of the individuals being considered. All other things remaining constant, an individual with the best multi-skilling matrix would get picked to lead a team in an area. It only made good sense to do this, since this person would then be competent to not only supervise operating staff, but also facilitate on-the-job training for newcomers in virtually any areas of the process s/he managed.

In a precursor to this article titled How To Be A Jack Of Many Trades™, And Why It Can Make You Succeed More Often! , I described my personal experiences as a Multipreneurial Employee in Guinness between 1995 and 2001. I also went further to give examples of Multipreneurs in sports, politics, and entertainment – pointing out along the way, how the reader’s early schooling experiences, in many ways, has already prepared him/her to be a Multipreneur – though s/he may not know it!

In the final part of that article, I outline “Steps To Becoming An Intelligent Jack Of Many Trades™(or Multipreneur)” ending by elaborating on specific ways by which multipreneuruing can make anyone can succeed more often at work and/or in life.

Copy and paste the following link ([http://www.trextop.com/article/171970.html])in your browser URL entry bar, to read the full text of the article I referred to, and learn more about why it pays to be a Multipreneur, if you want to succeed more frequently(and for the long term), in the increasingly unpredictable and fast-changing societies of the 21st century and beyond.

Self-Development/Performance Enhancement Specialist – Tayo Solagbade – works as a Multipreneur, helping individuals/businesses develop and implement strategies to achieve their goals, faster and more profitably.