Is your advertising meaningful? Dicks Sporting Goods leads the way

Many businesses have spent developed budgets, hired creative directors, and surveyed test groups just to provide the best advertising. Is it diverse? Check. Good product placement? Check. Did we avoid regulatory defects? Check. So, what is missing? THE EMOTION. THE CONNECTION. THE REALITY.

In the article below we learn how Dick’s Sporting Goods has spent that last two-three years building an emotional relationship with the potential consumer through their TV advertisements (NOVICE NOTE: The campaign as a whole is marketing the TV commercial alone is just advertising). Meanwhile they are building a community outreach program for those who feel connected enough to donate.

The reality is, in today’s world is not enough to just promote the logo of your business, have a buy here buy now ad, and get the sale. Consumers are more business savvy and quciker to reject those who are not authentic. They hold businesses responsible on a deeper level and want a humanized element to the business approach. How well can you pull on the heart strings? It doesn’t have to be a tear jerker everytime, but showing the consumer that you understand who they are and what type of lives they lead.

If you want to see examples of how it is done right see the Dick’s Sporting Good commercials here: http://goo.gl/eWND6H

If you need help organizing your campaign click here http://goo.gl/EeWkGt and reach out to us directly.

Thanks for reading!
The SquareBall

Why “SquareBall” You Ask?

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One of the most common questions we are asked is ” how did we come up with the name Squareball?”. Please take a moment to read this quick post on the thought process behind it.

Once upon a time all we did was help people who wanted to work for themselves
(potential small business owners), unlock skills and competencies they never knew they had. One such way we went about this was to analyze every aspect of their personal and professional lives. Most of us are extremely good or love to do things that on the surface don’t sound like profitable businesses ventures. Others are extremely good at something that has been turned into a profitable business venture by thousands of other people and present a huge barrier to enter that market.

At Squareball we look at these two aspects. One aspect is called the “Square” this is a skill or discipline you have that is worth money. The “Square” aspect may be your fulltime job, the degree you received in college, or any certifications or license you hold. The “Square” aspect has boundaries, regulations, guidelines, standards, instructions, etc. Basically, the “Square” aspect keeps you in a box.

The second aspect we look at is what we call the “Ball”. This aspect is the “feel good” portion or your life. It could be music, the arts, working out, reading, volunteering etc. Once again on the surface, it does not sound profitable. This could be the things you do that bring a sense of balance to your life. Looking at the two aspects, the “Square and the Ball”, we pair skills with each other, and brainstorm on how we can create a profitable business venture by leveraging two seemingly unrelated aspects of your life. Check out the example below…

One gentleman approached us and acquired about our services in terms of helping him create a profitable business model. He had no idea what he wanted to do, but knew he wanted to work for himself. We started the process by asking him some key questions in order to construct his “Square and ball” list. Eventually he revealed to us that he had a barbers licence. This was his “Square”. He also told us he really enjoyed music, not only listening but producing and playing instruments. This was his “Ball”. We brainstormed and presented him will a list of potential business models, one of which was to open a barbershop with an afterschool program to teach inner-city children how to play instruments and produce music.

As you can see, ” the Square and the Ball” have the potential to work well together. This ideal is the basis of our company. It forces you to unlock your life, and think about the possibilities. If you would like to start YOUR Squareball venture, please comment on this blog and we will reach out to you. Also, like us on Facebook!!!

4 Points of Motivation For Every entrepreneur

Help me squareball

Every Entrepreneur goes through the roller coaster of achieving triumph in business. There are often times where we even question if it is possible to reach the next level. FEAR NOT we are here to lift your spirits .

Celebrate the small wins

When SquareBall first began we made a promise to each aspect of the business into to a success story. Not saying that everything went well, but we know how to recognize the good from the bad not matter how big or small the win was. Not every idea is going to be a home run. Sometimes you just have to be happy with getting on base.

Go beyond the boundaries

Once the business gets going, it is very easy to get weighed down with every day struggles of running a business. The marketing/advertising strategies, the office culture, client/customer concerns, and many other issues tend to distract from the original reason why it all began. Instead of getting down and questioning the future, find time to generate new ideas like you did when you first started. Even if the ideas are not top notch, just get the creative juices flowing. Don’t forget what got you where you are.

Expect the unexpected

This is simple…Never be caught off guard. Many times we never see the storm coming. That does not stop us from building a safe house. Be mentally prepared for the lows that will come.

Don’t hesitate to milk the cow

As entrepreneurs we love to brand out into new business ventures, promotions, and other High risk high reward (HR2) ideas. We understand and support that thought process…HOWEVER don’t be afraid to use your cash cow as a back up plan. Always have new benefits to your top product/service for when these HR2 ideas don’t work out.

Being an Entrepreneur is one of the most difficult positions in business. There will be some rough patches. BUT In the great words of Winston Churchill, “Never, Never, Never Give up.”

Best of Luck and we are always here to help.

– The SquareBall Team

How can a marketing consultant help you? Ask yourself these 4 questions:

How can a marketing consultant help you?  Ask yourself these 4 questions:

Many entrepreneurs go through the same progressions. They start out with a small idea the becomes a life-commitment with hopes of living the dream. Throughout the development of this “little idea” there will be all kinds of roles that are taken on because there simply is no one else to handle it and who has time to teach someone how to do what you can learn. Right? …… WRONG.

Some are fortunate enough to run their business and master the art of selling, negotiating, advertising, marketing, accounting, and all the other intangible duties that come with running business.

The smart ones realize early that no one succeeds without help. The gain back their energy to focus on day to day business needs.

So how do you know if a consultant team can help you? Ask yourself these four questions.

1) Are there opportunities or openings in my market that I want to take advantage of but can’t find the right promotion/strategy to do so?

2) Do I feel like I am constantly juggling : creating effective messaging that keeps current customers yet attract new customers, developing new products/services to stay relevant, finding and building alliances and partnerships?

3) Am I falling behind in using technology to help me find new business?

4) Are my issues primarily due to time and staff constraints and not financial constraints?

If you said yes to any of the four, we should talk. Or you should at least spend more time reading our other post the help spark some ideas for your business. Take advantage of our time and email us at info@squareballmarketing.com

The perfect advertising sandwich – WASSSUP!

Years ago, many of us started our conversations, walked into plenty of bars, or answered the phone with the iconic phrase …… WASSSUP? This single phrase from a Budweiser commercial was a global craze!

The way the commercial was scripted was the perfect advertising sandwich.

Step 1: Mention the Brand (visual or verbal)
Step 2: Grab attention of the audience
Step 3: Mention the Brand (visual or verbal)

Many advertisers push to grab the attention of the audience first. However that takes the risk of having the brand lost in the messaging. Many businesses, especially small businesses, can not afford to take branding risk with prices rising in most advertising avenues .

Always remember the only important advertising is advertising that is effective.

How reading can boost your business and career

Must-read books to be successful in business

Smart people learn from their mistakes. Geniuses learn from other peoples mistakes. The benefit of learning from others mistakes is the investment that you spend on yourself. Invest by learning others misfortunes you/your business grows by learning about your competition, researching the nuances of your market, and determining reasonable expectations.

It is extremely difficult to be better than those before you if you do not know what they have done or what the professionals suggest? One lesson we have learned in business (especially as consultants) is no customer/client/partner/boss HAS to listen to you. You must make your audience NEED to listen to you. Yes…NEED. You may be thinking, “They should WANT to listen”. Well it’s simple…many can thrive without the things they want, but no one can function without the things they NEED.

Click on the photo and continue to browse our blog for the top business reading material recently published.

Thanks for reading!
– SquareBall Marketing Team

Become a leader with 8 easy steps

Become a leader with 8 easy steps

Often times, especially as entrepreneurs, we deem ourselves as natural-born leaders. We have developed the business idea on our own. The creation and direction of the business is done on one person’s shoulders. Heck, we have become successful and never asked for a pat on the back. SO… how come more people are not exactly sold on following us to the promise land?

We, more often than not, our leadership has never been tested or evaluated by the most important follower. YOUSELF! Check out these 8 great tips to see where you are on the long journey of being a great leader.

http://onforb.es/H7nspu

Enjoy!

What Successful Entrepreneurs Have in Common

As the saying goes…To be the BEST you have to beat the BEST! Before beginning your battle to success here are a few tools to help your journey.

What Successful Entrepreneurs Have in Common

Despite the rumors, no one reaches success without any help or fortunate turns of lucky event. As entrepreneurs, we already have the mindset that we can make it on our own. Right? This is the reason we are not happy working a 9-5 building a business that doesn’t reflect our goals/passion. That might be a great reason to become an entrepreneur but not the receipe to become a successful one.

No matter how original your idea may be, there is always a blueprint (even if it is a generic version) to help you along the way. If no one has become successful, use their mistakes as your guidelines. Also, seek consultants or training documents for assistance.

Good luck in your journey.

Are you RUNNING a business or just owning one?

Before you become knee deep in entrepreneurship assure yourself that you have this personality trait. Will you fail without it? Maybe. Maybe not. But it could make the difference between running/growing a successful business and just owning a business.

COURAGE Ladies and Gentlemen! Courage is a must have when you are in control of your own destiny. According to the Encarta dictionary Courage is defined as: the ability to face danger,difficulty,uncertainty,or pain without being overcome by fear or being deflected from a chosen course of action. This definition is very uplifting,strong,and sounds like something Mufasa would say. Much like Simba,business owners cannot be afraid to make the tough decisions.

Many business owners (especially small business owners) have perfected the ability to MANAGE the business,keep up with budgets, and work well with their team. That all is great,except where will the business be in the future? As an owner you must manage people yet Run the business. Decide where the company is regressing,what new areas of business can company the company benefit from,is the current direction good for the business? As these questions and others are answered you will truly become an entrepreneur. The bigger picture will show itself and true growth can take place for your business.