Ad Patrem Meum (To My Father) – Original Poem

father11Fatherhood; a blessing, masked in a curse, nurtured with a miracle

Infancy evolves to childhood
Childhood to adolescence
Adolescence to adulthood
Adulthood to reflection

The role of father yet, remains the same
Without complaint, without remission, without hesitation

Maturity heightens awareness
Heroism slides down an unpredictable path leaving a permanent imprint of vulnerability

A father lets you grow
To make mistakes
To learn
To thrive on a life of purpose

He doesn’t turn back when you journey on your own; nor turn away when you are in need of a helping hand

He served his country with honor, his family with respect; his career with dedication

Often his dreams on hold

father10He cheers in silence and applauds out loud
Modest and distant to the outside world
Warm and safe to us

His hug is like a fortress of safety
His words, often so few, inspire and light the flame of thought

Oh father
Oh father
Oh father

He will disagree every step of the way
Impose judgement
A fortress from the hate all around

His greatest perfection is his abundance of imperfection

He is a teacher with the greatest lesson; to live a life of virtue and meaning

The hunter, the warrior, the gentle beast

He is my father

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Simplifying Marketing: Marketing 100 ½

3-ways-to-simplify-online-marketing-be10c95e10The idea of marketing is simple, create brand awareness, create brand visibility, and drive a call to action.  Whether you are selling a product, idea, concept or vision, marketing drives your result.  It is the key element to convert your dream to a convertible reality.

We tend to complicate or over simplify at times.

Complicated: “First we do product testing, then we market to focus groups, rework the angle of our market penetration, do major press release and leak out a key application.  Then we monitor shopping trends, re-tool our distribution model and then put out a new release in six months”

Over-simplified: “Just get a celebrity endorsement.  Who cares how bad it is.”

Now, let us provide a basic understanding of marketing and marketing strategy that we can all relate to:

In its most core elements, marketing is made up of three basic behaviors that bring product and customer together:

  • Loyalty
  • Quality
  • Relatability

That is all.  Driving a successful marketing campaign needs to bring these three audiences together.  The first two are easy.

Let us take a moment to poll the audience.  What population has the highest engagement on Instagram?

  • Strong global product brands? – No
  • Celebrities? – No
  • World Leaders? – No

simpiThey all have astronomical numbers of followers, but their conversion rate is not as high as this population of folks.  How about this group of people?

  • Motivational speakers? – No
  • Authors? – No
  • Brand mascots? – No

The answer is teens between the ages of 13 and 18.

While the average engagement is 2.5% and best practice engagement is between 4% – 8%, teens have engagement of 40% or higher.  Why?  Simple, relatability.

A teen may have 200 followers, but for every image they share, 100 or more will like and/or comment because they can relate.  They know the person, the places they are hanging out and the mischief they are creating.  They nailed the third category.

Loyalty will always remain and with organic growth, that portion of your customer base will be significant.  Quality, now that is a challenge.  Putting out a quality product is difficult, but continuing year after year is a true testimony to longevity and brand strength.

How do you take a group of individuals that cannot relate to your product or service and give them something they can relate with?  That is an age old question that marketers have been wrestling with for years.

Emotion?  It is not the only way, but a very effective one.

Emotion is a powerful tool.  Through laughter and tears, we can take the strongest of giants and bring them down to the core of human connection.  When you see the Clydesdale kneel before the symbolic space that was once the Twin Towers, or a young boy dresses as Darth Vader thinking he used the force to start his dad’s VW or cute dog waiting for his dad to come home, you are seeing a call to emotion.  If you can break-down the emotional walls, you made a connection.

brand1The concept of marketing is easy, the research, design and execution is the real work.

This is not to minimize the understanding of marketing.  A true marketer is a gifted professional whose combined knowledge and application of psychology, analytics, research, market testing, product placement and listening is the key to taking a simple idea and making it great.

We live in a world saturated with products, ideas, gadgets, apps and merchandising shortcuts.  Everywhere we turn is the next “great idea”.  Except 98% will fail.  The ability of a marketing to connect loyalty, quality and relatability will convert idea to reality.