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First, Best, or Different

Niche Marketing Matters
By John Bradley Jackson

Why Do You Exist?

August 28th, 2009

Now that is a heavy question, is it not? Yet, there must be some reason that you are here on this planet at this time.

This type of question can motivate some to study philosophy and others to enter the seminary. Or, you could consider good old fashioned denial and avoidance to dodge the question—why bother answering a question that cannot be answered anyway?

To save you that trouble, here is the simple answer. You exist to fulfill your own unique purpose—whatever that may be. That is why you exist.

You have a unique responsibility to live out your own personal script. Maybe that purpose is to invent things like software or music. Your purpose could be to lead or teach others. You might have one purpose, a few, or many. Whatever it is, it is exclusively yours. It does not matter what your purpose is as long as you do it.

Alas, here is the rub—you must uncover your purpose before you can do it. One way to discover your purpose is with the creation of a personal mission statement. A personal mission statement addresses three questions:

1) What is your life about?

2) What do you stand for?

3) What are you doing to fulfill that purpose?

Using no more than 30 words, a personal mission statement says what you wish to accomplish or contribute and who you want to be. Your mission statement speaks about what you are doing today to fulfill that purpose. Don’t confuse your mission with vision. Vision statements describe what could be in the future while a mission statement lives in the here and now.

Yes, answering these questions may not be easy. Here is an exercise that might help get you going. Imagine that it is your 80th birthday and you are having a grand party. All your family, friends, co-workers in your profession, and neighbors have gathered to hear you speak. What would you say to them was most important in your life? What did you do for the last 80 years? Why? How?

As the Greek philosopher Epictetus wrote, “First say to yourself what you would be; and then do what you have to do.”

John Bradley Jackson
© Copyright 2009 All rights reserved.
(this blog is being republished by request)

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Name That Domain

August 24th, 2009

A good domain name should have the following elements:

1. It should be easy to spell. Avoid hyphens, double letters or funny spellings. Hyphens get confused with underscores. Double letters can cause confusion. Unusual or clever spelling gets us all in trouble.

2. Domains ending in .com are preferred but .net and .us are becoming more common. This ending suffix is called a domain extension.

3. Two word combinations are preferred. Longer combinations can be hard to remember. I regret to inform you that it seems that almost every two word URL has been taken. Three words may be the only way to go.

4. Made up words and acronyms have been the rage—think Google, Yahoo!, and Zappos. Still the cost of creating a brand for a name like this is astronomical. Interestingly enough Google gives higher rank to URLs that use searchable words. For example, www.nichemarketingmatters.com contains search friendly terms.

5. Short is always better, but good luck with that. It is not easy with .com prefixes.

John Bradley Jackson
© Copyright 2009 All rights reserved.

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Author Interviewed on Radio

August 14th, 2009

I was interviewed on the Jason Hartman Radio Show which is syndicated across the globe. The subject was entrepreneurial marketing and my book “First, Best, or Different”.

To hear the show, visit http://www.jasonhartman.com/radioshows/

The segment is called “#112 – Unique Financing & Loan Modification Programs and Profitable Entrepreneurial Marketing” and my interview is second 30 minutes.

John Bradley Jackson
© Copyright 2009 All rights reserved.

P.S. Radio interviews are a great way to get your message out.

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To Trust or Not

August 6th, 2009

“Better to trust and be disappointed once in a while, than it is to distrust & be miserable all the time”
- Coach John Wooden

A common definition of trust is when you rely on the integrity, strength, or ability of another person—it is an expression of our confidence in others. Occasionally, we just feel it, but most of the time other people have to earn our trust.

Why are we so stingy with our trust? I think it is a learned behavior. People break promises and sooner or later we learn to be cautious or not to trust our instincts or impulses. Better safe than sorry.

Yet, this same learned behavior impedes our progress with new people and new ideas. John Wooden tells us to trust first, if we can. There are many good people out—you just need to trust them and give them a chance.

John Bradley Jackson
© Copyright 2009 All rights reserved.

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Beautiful People Have an Advantage

August 2nd, 2009

Ever catch yourself staring at a beautiful person or the image of one? I know it sounds a little creepy, but it is like you can’t help yourself from staring at them. Don’t feel weird, as it turns out humans may be hardwired to do this.

There is something compelling about a pretty face, whether it be male or female. We prefer to be around them instead of average looking, or, heaven forbid, ugly people. We tend to chose leaders who are better looking—you have to admit that Obama is a good looking guy. Ever notice that many CEOs are tall and handsome? It is no accident.

Advertisements that include pretty people sell better than those with average people. Open any magazine and you will see products being pitched by pretty women and handsome men. Advertising agencies know this and so do modeling agencies.

As for ugly people, we like to laugh at them. Most comics have big noses or are fat or are just plain funny looking. Think Phyllis Diller, Stephen Wright, Carrot Top, or Margaret Cho. Yep, this is not a pretty group.

So, what is beauty?

It varies from for men and women. According to Professor Victor Johnstone of the University of New Mexico, “Men look for an adult female face that is different from the average face. The two key measurements are the distance from the eyes to the chin, which is shorter – in fact it is the length normally found in a girl aged eleven and a half; and the size of the lips, which are fatter — the size normally found on a fourteen-year-old girl”. Thus, men have a specific facial profile in mind.

Men are judged differently by women. For example, studies show that women are more attracted to the men who are smiled at by other women. Women rely upon the attitudes of others to shape their own determination about the attractiveness of men. Women prefer a man that is desired by other women and feared or respected by men.

Biologically, women are drawn to men that lead the tribe or clan—this is tied to the desire to procreate and make the best babies for the survival of the species. Handsome helps but power is also desired.

Of course, body type, race, height, and other factors come into to play. But, the point is that beauty counts. It counts more than maybe more than you and I like to think. Sad but true.

John Bradley Jackson
© Copyright 2009 All rights reserved.

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Help Others Unconditionally

August 1st, 2009

The single most important thing that I have learned in my business career is that you need to help others unconditionally.

This means that when someone calls for help it is in your own best interest to help them. This might be giving a reference for a job seeker or it might be acting as a sounding board for a new business concept dreamed up by an entrepreneur. A colleague might need someone to talk to while in a personal crisis. My advice to you is to help them and expect nothing in return.

Yes, I am a capitalist. As a veteran peddler, the natural reaction is to consider a request for help as an indicator of a need to buy from the prospect. While it might be true, the real opportunity is in helping the other person and not selling your services. Focus your energies on the other party’s needs and not on your own.

While listening may be all the other person needs, I recommend doing more. That could include doing an email introduction, critiquing a business plan, or calling the other person back in a week or two to see how the project is going. That follow up call may be the most significant thing that you do since so few people care enough to take the time to do so.

My bet is that your colleague will be stunned and grateful by your generosity. It is my experience that they will give back to you in a variety of ways. It is reasonable that they will continue the relationship with you. Or, they may refer you or your business to others. If you have a product or service that they need, they will buy from you.

Your reward may not come right away. It might come much later or not at all. Some might argue the true gift is in the giving itself. I will leave that for you to decide.

My recommendation is to return every phone call. Answer every email. Make yourself available. Help others. Opportunity awaits you.

John Bradley Jackson
© Copyright 2009 All rights reserved.

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