Archive | September, 2010

Stick to the knitting

Stick to the knitting is the old business school adage that you say to a business that’s overstretching: the coffee shop that starts to sell furniture; the hairdressers that goes for a jewellery line. But the recession isn’t stopping some pushing very tenuous brand extensions. I confess to thinking The Sun had completely gone off […]

John Lewis bucks their own trend

It’s difficult to describe how most feel about John Lewis. I don’t mean their gorgeous stores or brilliant staff; I’m talking about their very different business model of employee ownership. Well, with pre-tax profits up 28% to £110m for the six months to July 31 they’re the envy of the high street this autumn. John […]

For Prime Minister read Project Manager

When the pressure really builds I think of how difficult leadership must be for the Prime Minister. Surely our everyday business ‘issues’ are nothing compared to the table of responsibility inside number 10. That’s why I’m doubly struck by Tony Blair writing in his autobiography and mentioning in his PR interviews that he changed dramatically […]

Is branding only for big guys?

Should every penny SMEs spend on marketing go on traffic initiatives that directly affect turnover? I know plenty of small business owners who’d say that branding is just for the big guys. They’re enraged with the anecdote that says, “half of all marketing is junk, and half of it works, but you never know which […]

The email TRaP

Detractors would say it’s childish to email your customers reminding them of such menial tasks as cleaning a vacuum filter, but I really like this email from Dyson. No selling, no offers, no coupons, no upgrades, no end of season bumf… just service. No, it doesn’t help the till ring today, but it’s a great […]