I HAVE BEEN VERY LUCKY IN FRIENDSHIP

I have been very lucky in friendship. I may not have the wealth or success that some can claim, but I know what it is to have people in my life who know me well, like me just as I am (well, most of the time), listen to me, make me laugh, support me always, and who make my life better on a regular basis.

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BUILD YOUR BRAND REPUTATION WITH KINDNESS

What does it mean to build a reputation? I’m not talking about brand recognition, or even the quality of the products or services you offer. Those things are important; however, a reputation is something more. It’s the little things…those moments of unprompted kindness and consideration that stick with you for a lifetime. In other words, the stuff that you truly remember.

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DON’T LET YOUR RELATIONSHIPS LANGUISH, THEY’RE WORTH THE EFFORT

A professional network is more than just a list of well-placed contacts. It’s a collection of relationships, built on a foundation of time, energy and emotional investment. The people that you see every day, at work or in any social group, are in the best position to learn what you’re all about over time. In other words, these are solid, meaningful relationships, whether they’re built professionally or personally.

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YOU ARE AN INFLUENCER… EVERYONE INFLUENCES SOMEONE

There are countless ways to grab the attention of your audience, but keeping them coming back for more is where the real value lies—it’s where you build influence. Mom bloggers are a good example of this. Those who developed the greatest influence did so with good content—and kept their audiences engaged by producing more of it. But just because they were moms and their audiences were moms didn’t make them influential. It was the quality of the content they produced that resonated with a particular audience.

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WHAT 2016 TREND IS DEFINING (OR REDEFINING) MARKETING?

One of the biggest trends I’ve seen in 2016 is that more marketers have decided to stop talking past their customers, and start talking to them. It’s what I like to call “Looking People in the Eye Digitally,” and it’s great to see people embracing the concept. That’s the good news. On the other side of the ledger, the brands that have embraced personal, relationship-focused marketing present a stark contrast to the many that are still locked into the old, impersonal status quo. Industry-wide change takes time, when it happens at all, but your business doesn’t have to wait for the rest of the industry to catch up.

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#RETAILRELEVANCY… WHERE WE STAND, WHERE WE’RE HEADED, AND WHY IT MATTERS

The path to purchase is not just evolving – it has evolved. How are brands responding? I sat down with long-time friend and business partner John Andrews, for a live stream discussion on the path to purchase, the evolution of retail, and even some inside insights on our Amazon purchasing habits (spoiler alert: John’s a big fan of peanut butter).

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