TAGLINE: You better GYST on PMS or you’re history!

November 19, 2006

My son has been working on a blog with a very strong and simple theme. The five principles of Customer Satisfaction are exactly the same as the five principles of Profit Maximization. Now nothing could be simpler: take the five steps to satisfy customers and you have taken the five steps to maximize profits in the long term. Naturally, he’s been working on developing a clever tagline to identify his site and his concept.

The name of his site is Strategyst.com and one of the taglines he developed is “The Gyst of the Customer Experience” which he discarded when someone pointed out that an obscure meaning of gyst is to “get your stuff together” rather than “the main or essential part of a matter” (gist). Now making decisions based on the meaning of very obscure acronyms is probably the epitome of political correctness which I’m not. I still like “The Gyst of Profit Maximization” or some variant of that concept but then I’m an old fashioned businessman who thinks that profit maximization is a noble purpose.

According to the Urban Dictionary, GYST is an acronym for “Get Your Shit Together” with roots in the Military. It is used when correcting someone for not following procedures or for other minor goof-ups. Occasionally it’s used at the end of a message for more serious problems.
Example: “You better gyst or you’re history.”

Now in my mind, if we are considering the potential meaning of acronyms when designing strong marketing taglines then I kind of like:

You better GYST on PMS or you’re history!

In other words, You better Get Your Shit together on Profit Maximizing Strategy or you’re history. In essence that is what my son’s blog is all about and no message to business could be stronger.

Tagline Mania

November 16, 2006

Now Mania is one of those really funny words that can mean a few things but the definitions I like are “excessive excitement or enthusiasm; craze:” and “an ancient Roman goddess of the dead”. Most are familiar with the first usage as in Wrestle Mania and at first, that’s what popped into my head when I started my search for the elusive UPS Tagline that I thought was so bad.

I went to the UPS corporate site and found a list of trademarks.
There were over 100 registered marks but the one I was looking for was not there. I’m not sure whether the 100 trademarks represent tagline mania or Tagline Mania where the capital letters reflect the proper name for the goddess of the dead.

I continued my search as I Googled taglines & UPS. The first reference was a story about the new global tagline which had a focus on China. It is an imperative statement which leaves me cold as to it’s meaning and promise. Maybe it sounds better in Chinese: UPS launches ‘Deliver More’ tagline – Atlanta Business Chronicle

The next tagline I found is a classic but as pointed out by one critic, “The UPS tagline, “What Can Brown Do For You?” catches your attention, but really does not tell you much of anything about UPS.” Another critic is even harsher as he noted, “Sorry UPS, But Brown Reminds Me of Dog Poop.”

“Moving at the Speed of Business” is on the list and I actually like it so long as you don’t confuse it with Microsoft .Net which is also “Moving at the speed of Business.”

I viewed four pages of Google to find the bad tag line because it was so bad I couldn’t remember anything about it except that it stunk. I finally found it! Synchronizing Global Commerce. Now when it comes to global commerce, I’m not even sure that God can promise “to cause to go on, move, operate, work, etc., at the same rate and exactly together.”

A far easier phrase to understand, remember and which happens to be true for UPS, DHL, FedEx and a few other firms is that they are “Making Global Business Possible!” (copyright John A. Boyd, 2006)
Of course this is the Internet and everything is for sale Anyone who wants to purchase my creative and catchy phrase can give a shout.

Be Careful Who You Shaft!

November 13, 2006

Studies have proven that every contented customer only tells a couple of people and each one you treat poorly may tell a dozen. Some times you hit the big time.

In a comic strip from 11/9/06, the cartoon character Shoe goes to the airline desk and says “I’ll need to take a late flight back home.” The response is classic: “No problem, Sir…Our flights are always late.” It doesn’t take a genius to figure out which airline caused the artist problems. The sign over the service desk was AMERICAN’T AIRLINES.

Now Jeff MacNally’s Shoe is syndicated in more than a 1000 papers. It doesn’t much matter that I read this on a reasonably pleasant trip with AA. My complement will only reach a few dozen. readers. You almost have to assume anymore that the person you aggravate is really important and if you don’t resolve it, the complaint will be heard in the press, on the web, in the courts and by lawmakers.

Dry cleaning is one of the most highly regulated businesses in America and it’s probably because there were so many bad ones for a long time. Environmentalists, lawmakers and consumer advocates clamped down with new laws and the industry had few advocates to protect them. It’s tough to soar with the eagles when you hang with turkeys. So if you are in an industry with a bad reputation, look out for more regulations as politicians, consumer activists and environmentalists try to get even with you.

Gee that sounds like car dealerships, repair shops, contractors and drycleaners. It might seem that some industries get excessive regulation as payback for poor customer and community relations. Surprised?

How fast are Yahoo Lawyers?

November 6, 2006

It’s kind of unique being hated. The person who hates uses energy and creativity and it’s all focused at you. I have been a community activist all my life and have some pretty good credentials. So when a young person started hating me relative to the general election, I figured it went with the territory. I didn’t care too much except that it bothered my wife to hear and read about me being defamed. However, when the vailed death threat showed up my wife nearly had a nervous breakdown. So I did the logical, I went to whois, found out it was a stealth registration and aprroached Yahoo! about shutting down the site. I fillled out their complaint form which took about 2 hours to find with a 2 day delay because I sent the complaint to the wrong department on the first try. The second attempt is below.

Name: John Boyd

Subject: Defamation

Area: Web Hosting

Please provide us some details.

“The site defames me in blog comments
without reference to all my credentials
which are presented on

http://www.boydsvi.com/boyd/index.html

It has started to advocate physical
violence towards me on its home page. I
do not believe that you should host this
site without my lawyer having access to
the name of the owner.”

Now I really didn’t ask for much, Just the name of the person defaming me. After all when you present the following statement to a cult which averages less than a high school education you should be prepared for the worse. After all how many ways would a third grader interpret: “The only poll we want to hear about mentioned in the same sentance with your name is the figurative pole that we the electorate will shove down your extortionist throat.”

Now just as haters ought to be banned fronm the internet so should Corporate auto responders.

I love the response from Yahoo!:
“please be advised that Yahoo! Domains complies with third-party subpoenas seeking information that pertains to the identities of given subscribers, within the limits
of the federal Electronic Communications Privacy Act, 18 U.S.C. ? 2701
et seq., and state law.

We recognize that you may be disappointed with this response, however,
it is consistent with federal law. Congress enacted the Communications
Decency Act of 1996 (“CDA”), which provides that online service
providers may remove, edit or not remove or edit content, in their sole
discretion, in recognition of the unique role of online service
providers such as Yahoo! Domains. Simply stated, this federal statute
protects online service providers from any liability for third-party
statements, or for the removal or failure to remove such statements. See
also, Zeran v. America Online, Inc., 129 F.3d 327 (4th Cir. 1997), cert.
denied, ___ U.S.___ (1998).

Should you have further questions regarding this matter, you may direct
them in writing to:

Legal Department
Yahoo! Inc.
701 First Ave.
Sunnyvale, CA 94089

Thank you again for contacting Yahoo! Customer Care.”

Of course the issue at hand is a Federal Election which is covered by another set of laws that prohibit defaming or threatening known community activists. I did learn one thing though. If I wanted to start a hate site against a candidate with only a month to go to the election, I would host it in as a private registration at Yahoo! – it will take a month to get through the legal manure and in the meantime I can say whatever I want.

You got to love Yahoo! They live in “the best of all possible worlds” because they did everything right and obeyed the law at hand. Joe Stalin and Adolph Hitler thought they did the same.

Good Taglines are Worth the Effort.

October 29, 2006

My son gave me a corporate shirt which had the corporate name and the tagline “Freedom of Choice” which got me to thinking about Tags and taglines In the blogsphere Tags are the gateway to knowledge sharing as they are used to build the file system for shared interests. In business, taglines have been part of the advertising and promotional mix for over a century. The Real McCoy was thought to be a tagline for either a whiskey, a boxer or a black inventor about 150 years ago. Ivory has been 99 and 44/100 percent pure for over 100 years and The Pause that Refreshes has been used by Coke since 1929. I Googled all of the taglines and references to whiskey, Coke, Ivory Soap and Elijah McCoy show up on the first page. When I Googled “Freedom of Choice” I couldn’t find a company reference.

My favorite meaningful and memorable tagline is from Lew Henley’s Sewage Disposal in St. Thomas which claims to be “#1 in a #2 Business”. Pretty much that gives you the who and what in a cute package. “Coke is it” does the same as does the “Pause that Refreshes”. If a small business can be clever it makes you question what’s wrong with big business that use stupid taglines. Truth be told much of this crap probably comes from the chairman’s girlfriend who thinks it’s cute.

I saw another really bad tagline on a UPS truck and I couldn’t remember what it was so I Googled UPS taglines to refresh my memory. Seems they have had quite a few different taglines on the trucks and they have fired advertising agencies over bad ones. It took me 5 pages or references to find the bad one that I was looking for and I swear that it was on trucks up to a couple of years ago.

In the next post, I’ll have fun looking at the history of UPS taglines as reported by Google.

October 15, 2006

For those who are in business to earn a decent living, you should bookmark strategyst.com/wordpress This site is updated daily, is well written and loaded with knowledge. It’s written by my son and includes examples of well run and poorly run businesses and how it impacts profits. If I have any criticisms, he has not yet learned to use common popular tags which would allow anybody to find him. As an author his major concern is to index the site in a manner that the book he’s developing has a decent index. As a blogger, my concern is that people are able to find the information they need on an almost infinite web.

Most of his blog is currently being used to develop strategy based on The Five Pillars of Profit Maximization. If a company fails to do any of the five they will fail to achieve maximum profits and eventually they will fail. The model is that simple. The work was originally developed as The Five Pillars of Customer Satisfaction but as we worked with the model we began to recognize that customer satisfaction is not the reason to start a business; earning a profit is. At the same time the same five business principles of customer satisfaction will achieve maximum profits probably with a few more necessary. The focus is on the five at this time because if you don’t have these the rest won’t matter. The original work was posted on the web around 1999-2000 and is still there today with a few hundred visitors a day.

My other concern is that most people read blogs for a daily insightful moment and do not start at the beginning. As a matter of fact, wordpress is really not set up to read the journal or the manuscript for a book in chronological order as my son intends it. This is why editors can find an author and publish a book from a blog and it appears to be all new and unique copy. The daily advices he is offering is good, reading his whole book will be even better.

Are all the great names used up???

October 15, 2006

Just when I am distressed that I can’t create a new unique dot com name because everything I want is used already, somebody surprises me with their creativity. My favorite new name is womojo.com which was just registered in September. The made up word is a contraction for WOM (word of mouth) and mojo. Its easy to remember, easy to spell and descriptive of their business model. Not bad for a new name. For those suffering from mental blocks, my two favorite sites for name suggestions are nameboy.com which generates names based on two words you input and netsol.com which has listings of names which were formerly listed in the dotcom craze but are now expiring. Free advice of the day is take your time and keep on searching. The next great name is waiting to be discovered by somebody other than me.

My Son the Scholar

October 2, 2006

I started a blog with my son and he has developed into a full-grown blog-hog demanding full editorial rights over my gray haired advice. After all, as he explained, he does have the PhD. Rather than argue, I will rip off his copyrighted stuff and link to it and make my comments on my own blog. His stuff is really pretty good.

The focus is on customer relationships and profit maximization. Yeah that’s right, he wants to focus on extracting the maximum profit while keeping customers happy. As a matter of fact, I tend to agree the only socially acceptable profit is the maximum one. It rewards the creators, workers and investors of the best companies and makes them even stronger.

In his first blog, he points out the focus will be on “customer strategies and how to maximize business profits. These are topics that the whole world seems to know about, but few understand really well. The problem is not too little information, but too much is based on false premises or dated analysis.”

Throughout our careers, we have both studied classical economics and management theory and have found that neither works particularly well in the real world. The more that knowledge becomes a commodity, the more that business profit maximization will be customer-driven. You can create a profitable business without really understanding economics, but you better have a strong understanding of your customers. Hopefully our thoughts and experiences will be useful to as you look to build a sustainable and profitable business.

Hey – I joined Technorati

October 2, 2006

Technorati Profile

SBDC – The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

October 1, 2006

There is no such thing as a consistent SBDC. Every program is funded by the SBA in partnership with a University. I worked for one of the best and one of the worst. When we did a needs assessment, my boss Chester Williams and our office was rated as high as it could be. At the bottom was another division where people complained of bad advice, extortion, corruption etc. Eventually, the University and the SBA addressed the problems and the program became a roll model of excellence. Unfortunately, some people got substandard advice and were hurt.


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