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Archive for July, 2015

99 away from 5,000! Here is why I think it matters…

Wednesday, July 8th, 2015

Over the years I have been involved in contests & challenges with friends regarding increasing my contacts and each time everyone (S.G., S.S. E.S.,) has thanked me for getting them more involved! I must admit I like LinkedIn – scratch that….. I love LinkedIn and in today’s business world I would argue that this is one of the most important free tools available today.

For most of my contacts they have 500+ connections. Well shortly – 98 to be exact – I will be able to say I have 5,000 connections. I understand that some, if not many, people will say so what – and I get that often. Here are 4 reasons why it can only help.

  1. Quickly I notify a lot of people that we have a job opening – in fact I have filled two positions within a week of posting a quick message on LinkedIn
  2. When I interview someone with more connections it makes it very easy to find someone close to me who knows the candidate and can give me some needed information about the person
  3. I can post updates about my blog which builds awareness in a matter of seconds
  4. I have over 40 recommendations which is an easy way for people to see what people think about my conference presentations

Ok now your turn:

  • How many connections do you have?
  • Do you think there is tremendous value in having 5,000 connections?
  • How important is LinkedIn to you?

I look forward to reading your comments.

P.S. If you’d like to connect with me on LinkedIn, click here.

You Won! My question is…What did you do about it? By guest writer Debra Semans

Monday, July 6th, 2015

Last week, Merrill wrote a post about winning. Many individuals reported winning golf tournaments, awards for volunteerism, and other personal endeavors. What I want to know is: What Do You Do About the Business Awards You Win?

Many, many times in my career, I have walked past a case of awards won by the company where I worked or was visiting. And never have I ever seen any attempt to capitalize on those awards by linking them to your brand promise, to your strategic direction, or even to employee engagement. I assume you have to make some effort to get into the running for those awards. If you do, then aren’t they important enough to leverage in communications?

I participate in judging the entries for the Georgia State University Marketing Roundtable MAX Awards for marketing innovation that leads to strong business results. I would hope that the winners of the MAX Awards would take that back to their customers, employees and shareholders as evidence of delivering on their brand promise and corporate strategy.

But do they? In my career, I have never experienced this. So tell me…

  • What do you do with the business awards your company wins?
  • How do you communicate about your awards – and to whom?
  • Do you try to connect the award to your business strategy or brand promise? Or do you just communicate the fact of winning it?
  • How do you display the actual reward or trophy?
  • How do you display the award on your website and print materials?
  • How do you reward or recognize employees for winning awards?

I look forward to reading your comments.

PS – I am a 30+ year market research veteran. I am an experienced writer on marketing and marketing research topics, generating content for marketing your business.

Time to go to a water park! Where am I going?

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015

It’s the middle of the summer – the weather is approaching 100 and you can be refreshed in any water park in the United States and yours truly can get you there in one minute and pay for you to get in. My question is where are you going?


  • Splashin’ Safari – Santa Claus, Ind?
  • Schlitterbahn – New Braunfels, Texas?
  • Noah’s Ark – Wisconsin Dells, Wis?
  • Great Wolf Lodge – Grapevine, Texas?
  • Water World – Denver, Colo?
  • Water Country – Williamsburg, Va?
  • Raging Waters – San Dimas, Calif?
  • White Water Park – Branson, Mo?

Your turn:

  • Is it one of those parks?
  • What is your favorite water park in the country?
  • Living in Texas all I hear about is Schlitterbahn – if you have been there, how great is it?
  • I look forward to reading your comments.