How Marketing and Greed Destroyed Black Friday

How Marketing and Greed Destroyed Black Friday

This article was originally posted on my LinkedIn Profile at
http://bit.ly/1WQwmgz
on 11/28/2014

As I sit here enjoying my Seattle’s Best #5 coffee, after spending what seems like an eternity deleting Black Friday promotional emails from my gmail inbox, I just can’t help but wonder, what is Black Friday anyway, and why should I care? Why are all these marketers emailing me about Black Friday?

After all, I’ve been getting emails from marketers for an eternity, it seems. They’re all getting in my face, clogging up my inbox, trying to get me to buy this and that, telling me that I’ll save big bucks, claiming my eyes will pop out… here are just a few examples of the absurdly ridiculous attempts to get me to pull out my wallet:

  • Prices so low, they’re scaring us!
  • Get your treats! Last chance to save
  • Time is running out!
  • Black November – a month of Black Friday deals
  • 50 eye-popping black friday deals

The problem with these? (more…)

[VIDEO] How To Create A Simple Advertising Graphic For Website Advertising

[VIDEO] How To Create A Simple Advertising Graphic For Website Advertising

Website advertising is a big deal today. It’s probably the one area of the Advertising industry that still has a huge amount of growth potential. Advertisers and Agencies are finding all kinds of new ways to get the stuff you are already interested into your field of vision: whether it be on the web, on your mobile device, in a video game… and countless new avenues and vehicles yet to be discovered.

If you are a small business, there are a lot of options for web advertising starting with Google Adwords. AdWords allows you to create simple text ads and tie them to keywords and phrases so they know where to show your ad in the SERPS (Search Engine Results Pages). But if you really want your Ad campaign to get the most exposure, you need to create graphic ads for the Google Ad Network (also known as Google AdSense).

Website owners (like my clients Florida News Flash and The Life Center of Hernando) can create ad space on their site and either sell that ad space directly or create placements for Google Ad Network (AdSense) ads. AdSense offers placements for a variety of different ad sizes: 250×250, 200×200, 468×60, 728×90, 300×250, etc. depending on where they want to display the ads (in the sidebar, at the top or bottom of the page, in the middle of the page, etc.). At the time of this writing, there were (more…)

The First AppDataWorks YouTube Ad – “Crappy Websites” featuring Simon and Adrien

The First AppDataWorks YouTube Ad – “Crappy Websites” featuring Simon and Adrien

Watch the first AppDataWorks YouTube Ad

Video Advertising on Orange Keyboard Button.

Simon and Adrien star in the First AppDataWorks YouTube Ad

So here it is. The first AppDataWorks YouTube ad. The more I watch it, the more hilarious it is. Not just because it’s funny, but because it’s so true.

I’ve known for quite some time that YouTube advertising just may very well be the most important and valuable form of online advertising today. Why? Because it’s perfect for the mobile-centric generation that has very little use for reading and is better adapted to learning by watching. YouTube ads are little movies, and in many cases better than TV commercials. I’ve known this and have been heading down the path of getting to my first ad for a while now, but I’ve finally done it. And I couldn’t be more proud of my son, Jerry Boutot III, who agreed to use his awesome, simple, and extremely humorous cartoon characters to help me with an impactful video.

It all started several weeks ago when I was analyzing the web site of (more…)

Facebook Stole My Money and I Want It Back

Article originally published on LinkedIn and written by me, Jerry Boutot.

First of all I’m not a big money advertiser, so let’s get that right out on the table so I’m not blasted by flamers who want to focus on the total dollar amount of the theft of my ad dollars as if the fact it was stolen can be negated by some absurd rational that it’s not that much money. That’s like saying the mugger only got five bucks so why have him arrested. This isn’t about the amount of money involved, which for me and my income as the owner and sole proprietor of my company AppDataWorks IT Consulting Services is no tiny amount. It’s about the incredibly blatant and unapologetic theft of that money by the wildly out of control powers that be over at Facebook Corporate. (more…)

Facebook is Dead. Move on.

A butterfly flaps it’s wings in Beijing, and an F5 Tornado is unleashed half a world away. Facebook is dead. Get over it.

It’s been dead for quite a while. Most people don’t know it yet. Funny, most “thought leaders” in the marketing world don’t know it yet either. Some are starting to suspect. It’s starting to dawn on people who should know better and who should have known a long time ago that Facebook is nothing more than a soul sucking digital replacement for Television. It is a time vampire. It is a soul vampire. It is a life vampire. Just like TV.

You know, TV has nothing to do with the shows you like. It has nothing whatsoever to do with good storytelling. All of the people involved in the industry are just there to sell advertising. Whether they know it or not. That is the truth. But I think most of the people involved in TV do know it – it’s just the easily led populace that doesn’t know it. They think TV is there to give them great shows to watch. Great shows are on TV because great shows can command more Ad revenue per spot than crappy shows. With the exception of pay channels like HBO and Showtime, the invention of TV and the evolution of the Advertising Industry gave birth to an entire industry of actors, directors, writers, costume designers, photographers, videographers, video editors… all of it revolves around advertising revenue. HBO and Showtime are not too far removed, though, because their Content – shows like Game of Thrones, Dexter, The Sporanos, etc. – is designed to sell subscriptions and keep you subscribing. (more…)

AppDataWorks Brochure and Flyer – CTS Graphic Designs does it again!

AppDataWorks Brochure and Flyer – CTS Graphic Designs does it again!

I can’t even begin to tell you how totally amazed I am with the final results of my new AppDataWorks Brochure and Flyer. The incredible quality of the design that CTS Graphic Designs produced for me is astonishing. For Google’s sake I have to blog for about 250+ words but I’m really finding myself lost for words on this one. The only thing I can do is show you some photos and let you decide.

The following photo gallery shows a progression of the images I took from the final PDF’s with some good descriptions. Feel free to leave comments. The gallery is followed by individual images for those that want a more high definition

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These are the individual images. If you click on them, they’ll open to the full size image.

 


Be AWESOME!!!

Professional Services – the case for saying NO to DIY – part 1

Professional Services – the case for saying NO to DIY – part 1

Now let’s get something straight, right here and now. I’m a HUGE fan of DIY. You could say that DIY is so much a part of my DNA that most of what I know, most of why I’m a self proclaimed expert at so many things, is in part the result of having such a passion for DIY. It all really started when I was much younger and had no money to hire anybody to do anything – from auto repairs to furniture making to writing music to recording music to mixing and mastering my music to publishing to programming… yes, I am a self taught DIY’er that taught myself basic programming, then visual basic for applications (VBA), then Visual Basic 6.0, then ASP, then VB.NET and ASP.NET, then T-SQL, with a sprinkling of JavaScript and vbscript along the way. And why not? I had no money for any kind of schooling.

DIY as always been a big money saver for me. Over the years I taught myself how to build custom furniture. I built a French Armoire with 22.5 degree corners, in two pieces – a top and bottom piece – that fit together like they were made in a factory, but the two halves were made separately. I followed plans and learned the hard way – by doing. It was only my third big woodworking project. Here’s a picture of it:

Armoire

I taught myself how to fix my own cars. How to maintain my home. How to make custom trim for a house. How to trim a house. And many other things. I know lots of stuff and how to do things that I taught myself.

But DIY isn’t always the best way to go, especially for professional services.

So you may be thinking that I’m going to lecture you now about (more…)

Social Media Marketing? Not really. Try Social Branding. Or Social Networking. Social Engagement. But NEVER Social Media Marketing.

Social Media Marketing? Not really. Try Social Branding. Or Social Networking. Social Engagement. But NEVER Social Media Marketing.

Since I started my immersion into the world of online marketing last year, I’ve been plagued with a really bad feeling that I was missing something. Some big piece of information, a huge cornerstone was missing, something invisible and indefinable and WRONG with the whole idea of social media marketing… but damn if I could figure out what it was.

But in a conversation I was having with a business colleague, Rich Massa from Massa-Associates, I realized what it was: Social Media Marketing is not marketing at all!

The use of Social Media Marketing for business has gone ballistic in the last couple of years, and I can’t help but wonder if businesses aren’t just throwing money out the window by trying to use social media as a marketing tool instead of using it for what it is: a social engagement tool. Engaging with your customers is a great thing. It can help build a more “personal touch” to your brand persona.  But it isn’t marketing. It’s not marketing any more than customer service is marketing. Customer service has a single purpose: to take the customer and make them feel taken care of. That’s building loyalty. That’s making customers see you and only you when they’re looking for whatever it is that you have to sell. But it isn’t marketing. Sure, it can help your market, but it most certainly isn’t marketing any more than Advertising is marketing. (more…)

Getting Your Ducks In A Row – Organizing Your Efforts For An Effective Online Marketing Strategy

Getting Your Ducks In A Row – Organizing Your Efforts For An Effective Online Marketing Strategy

The proper order to follow for a successful Online Marketing Strategy

I’m not going to lie, I am constantly finding, curating, and consuming online content about the world of Online Marketing Strategy. So much so, that sometimes I get completely overwhelmed with how much there is that you can sift through in order to try and find the good stuff. Fortunately, and thankfully for my already full plate, something comes along that proves to be a huge time saver. In this case, I’m talking about Dave Lavinsky and the business guru’s over at GrowThink. They’ve created one of the best and most thorough online marketing courses ever called The Ultimate Internet Marketing System.

So right away I learned something really very simple and brilliant just listening to one of the podcasts that came as a bonus with the course that I decided I would share with my readers. I think of it as a very high level framework for approaching the order that you need to follow with any online marketing strategy.

As Dave points out, with online marketing campaigns there are a ton of moving parts and that you should not try and muddle through them doing everything at once. You must follow a very specific order or you are setting yourself up for failure. Whether you are new to online marketing or you’ve been doing it for some time and are not happy with the results you are getting, this is the order you should be following with all of your efforts. (more…)

The Million Dollar Hammer

“My USP (Unique Selling Proposition) is a Million Dollar Hammer” and other tales from the networking trenches.

Over the last few months I’ve been doing an awful lot of networking in the county where I live here in Florida. I joined The Greater Hernando County Chamber of Commerce back in September and had my Ribbon Cutting Ceremony in early October. Prior to my ribbon cutting, I went to at least half a dozen other chamber ribbon cuttings so I could meet some of the local business people and reduce some of my nervousness about public speaking. I knew I would have to speak at my ribbon cutting and let’s just say that I was a bit rusty in the public speaking department.

Everywhere I went, people asked me what I do. Apparently, we all have differences of opinion when it comes to what makes a good “elevator pitch” and what qualifies for a “unique selling proposition” (or some call it a unique value proposition). On my car, on my business cards, on the sign on my window it says:

(more…)

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