Marketing Brain Fodder

Perspectives on Strategic Marketing, Communication and Values in Today’s Marketplace

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Part 5 in our series on Building a Strategic Business Development Plan focuses on Delivering Value — the first step in establishing a working relationship. We’ve discussed strategy, target identification, building a strategic network, and most recently, becoming relevant (creating visibility) with the targets you’ve identified. But actually securing that coveted engagement, never mind earning trusted advisor status, typically requires more than a finessed list of credentials and a brand. The “trust”…
Thankfulness is a decision. Like many decisions we make, it has a ripple effect. It is borne of a perspective that transcends experience, and resists seeing life through any single lens. Thankfulness has no agenda. It is comfortable in any room…at ease in any position or station…predisposed to give, with no expectation. Thankfully, it is not confined to a day. Or a season. It cannot be measured, and it does not keep score. It is a…
It creeps into consciousness sometime in mid-to-late September. By mid-November, partners in firms everywhere are feeling either personal or institutional pressure (or both) to come up with a business development plan for the coming year. If you’re in the midst of this planning, you’ve happened onto the fourth installment in a series on building a business development plan. The objective is to provide a real-world framework for planning that does more than go through motions that…
Professional service providers who have difficulty identifying specific targets (as discussed in Part 2 of our series on Building A Business Development Plan) typically have one thing in common: an anemic or non-existent professional network. If this sounds familiar, Part 3 In our series on creating your business development plan is for you.  A healthy network is central to the development of new business for three reasons: It informs you with respect to new opportunities;…
Whether we talk about it or not, each of us has a value proposition. It frames days, shapes attitudes and is the fabric of the moments that define us. Either intellectual honesty and emotional integrity are guideposts to which we aspire, or we find it convenient to rely on shades of gray and situational ethics for cover. Either we believe word is equivalent to bond, or we live and work in a world without trust. Either we are driven…
This is the second installment in a 14-part series dedicated to everyone working on a business development plan for 2019. Part 1 outlined the necessity of a strategic foundation, and suggested a framework that will help in identifying and articulating the strategy. If you haven’t come to terms with this first step, resist the temptation to press ahead. While it can be challenging and messy, time invested here makes each successive step infinitely more easy.…
Over the next two-and-a-half months or so you may be among the lawyers, accountants, consultants and other professional service providers taking a long hard look at your marketing, business development and sales initiatives. The dye for 2018 is pretty much cast. Time to focus on market movement, emerging trends, lessons learned, and begin the work that will chart a course for the coming year. Whether your organization is breaking records this year, facing revenues in…
Some accomplish it with a pen — mightier-than-any-sword. Some with eloquent oratory. For some the tool is as simple as an invitation — how may I help you? Or the offer of a cup of cold water A few speak volumes with the sheer force of example. Whatever the avenue or methodology, the voice of real leaders encourages conversations — around core ideas, fundamental values, consequential agendas, and aspirational vision. To be sure, with the right megaphone any voice…
There is a basic principle in communication theory — shared experiences form the basis for the most effective communication. Even if we did not formally study the science, most of us have first-hand experience with the validity of the principle — in intimate, social and professional settings alike.In the space where experiences of the communicator overlap with those of the audience, there is a common vernacular, similar concerns and dreams. Invest in identifying this common…
Business development is not complicated. Hard work? Indeed…because effective business development (especially in a professional service firm) is almost always about building productive relationships. And that is no small task. But we shouldn’t confuse the hard work required to build rewarding relationships with the suggestion that business development requires something that is somehow inconsistent with our profession. Or that proven disciplines such as target identification, market research, and rigorous CRM are unnecessary time-wasters. Or marketing nonsense. In…