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Monthly Archives: August 2010

No Time Like the Present

Thanks Grasshopper for putting this together.

By |August 27th, 2010|misc|3 Comments

Marketing We Love – San Francisco Flash Mob

Would a dance studio in Orange County ever be able to pull this off?

I’ll take our weather all day but this is what makes San Francisco special…

East Coast West Coast Beef – Five Guys vs In-N-Out

It’s not as intense as Bad Boy and Death Row, unless you’re a foodie.

In a bold and brazen attempt to bring their East Coast burger-making style to the West, Washington D.C.-based Five Guys Burgers and Fries recently opened in Orange with more locations planned for Orange County.

In-N-Out opened its first location in Baldwin Park near LA in 1948.  It is headquartered here in Irvine.

If you are looking for a consistently awesome burger eating experience at the right price, there is no beating In-N-Out.

If you want to eat your face off, get fat and spend six bucks on a burger, then by all means haul yourself over to Five Guys.

The OC Register seems to like them, advertising it with the headline Five Guys Converts In-N-Out Fans.

The OC Register don’t love In-N-Out?

Y’all don’t love them?

Let it be known then…

we do.


Not Selling Benefits? You Must Be a New Small Business

Gaping Void Nobody CaresOK, repeat after me…

It’s always about them.

It’s always about them.

It’s always about them.

You are so excited over your new small business and the great concept you’ve come up with that the most important part of your future success has been overlooked.

Your customers.

It’s like going to a party and talking about yourself.  You will soon find alone in a corner talking…to yourself.  I’ve been there and trust me no one wants to be your friend.

Anybody who buys anything does it for what it can do for them.  Not for the satisfaction of the seller.  The only thing they are thinking is “What’s in it for me?”

But you know all this.

Oh yeah?

Checked your marketing materials lately?

I absolutely freakin guarantee that you are NOT selling any benefits in your copy.  It’s one thing to know it and a whole other enchilada to do it.

So here is how you can prevent that newbie mistake from spoiling the party.

Take a sheet of paper and create three columns.

Name the first one Features, the second one Advantages and the last one Benefits.  Under Features list all you can think of (for simplicity sake let’s use a car as an example – you’d put down navigation system as one feature for example).  Now list the Advantages the consumer would get from the feature, in this case you would avoid getting lost on a long road trip.  Now list the Benefit. In this it would be stress-free travelling.  Tie it right into an emotion like that and you’re really selling a benefit.

The key thing to understand is that most new small business owners are so excited about their new product or  service that they promote the feature, talk about the advantage and let the consumer figure out the benefit.

But in the real world, the sale is made the other way around: the consumer wants to know the benefit (to them), then (maybe) the advantage (to justify the buy) and finally (if at all) the feature.

Think about times when you bought something.  Chances are it was either a need, a great price or a benefit you couldn’t resist.

Ask yourself honestly if you are selling the benefits or the features.

And if it’s features, change it.

It will be well worth the effort.

Irvine Hires Carl Sandburg to Pen a Poem

Carl SandburgIn an effort to bolster the local economy and lift the spirits of its residents, the city of Irvine brought the poet Carl Sandburg out of his cryogenically frozen state for a few days.

He walked around Irvine and wrote a little poem.

You may remember Carl.

He put Chicago on the map with this:

“Hog Butcher for the World,
Tool Maker, Stacker of Wheat,
Player with Railroads and the Nation’s Freight Handler;
Stormy, husky, brawling,
City of the Big Shoulders:
They tell me you are wicked and I believe them, for I have seen your painted women under the gas lamps luring the farm boys.
And they tell me you are crooked and I answer: Yes, it is true I have seen the gunman kill and go free to kill again.
And they tell me you are brutal and my reply is: On the faces of women and children I have seen the marks of wanton hunger.
And having answered so I turn once more to those who sneer at this my city, and I give them back the sneer and say to them:
Come and show me another city with lifted head singing so proud to be alive and coarse and strong and cunning…”

And now he has done the same for Irvine…

Video Game Designer for the World,

Botox Maker, Stacker of Integrated Circuits,

Player with Real Estate and the Nation’s Mortgage Broker,

Calm, quaint, quiet, City of the Perfect Plan:

They tell me you are dull and I believe them, for I have seen your streamlined streets and homogenous homes luring Los Angelenos.

And they tell me you are polite and I answer: Yes, it is true I have seen the car yield to the bicycle.

And they tell me you are quiet and my reply is: I once heard a hummingbird while sitting in a Starbucks.

And having answered so I turn once more to those who sneer at this my city and I give them back the sneer and say to them:

Come and show me another city so safe, so educated, built for children, groomed for adults determined to bounce back and thrive once more…

By |August 10th, 2010|misc|11 Comments

Gabbi’s Mexican Kitchen – We Don’t Need No Stinkin Sign

Gabbis Mexican KitchenYou can say a lot without saying anything at all.

Opening a restaurant without a sign says two things.

1.  My food will rock your world.

2. I understand the power of word of mouth marketing.

Gabbi’s Mexican Kitchen in Old Towne Orange offers not only amazing food but also  the pure joy of discovering something unique and valuable to share with friends.

Yummy yummy word of mouth.

We heard about it from our friends (thanks Cory and Max!) and since our visit we have been telling everyone we know about chef/owner Gabbi Patrick.

Gabbi Patrick

She is the real deal.

She grew up in the LA restaurant biz and took her talents to UCLA (culinary studies) and Napa’s Greystone Culinary Institute of America. Her food is authentic and varied with dishes from all regions of Mexico.

It’s just awesome and if you don’t believe me check out their 218 reviews on Yelp.

Gabbis Mexican Kitchen Inside

The ambience inside is stylishly rustic with a cool little bar and a friendly local crowd.

Service is great, drinks are great (try the Jalepeno Margaritas with Cucumber) and dessert was some Mayan chocolate thingy that was fantastic.

I can’t stop talking about the place.

It’s filled with surprise and delight.

The essence of word of mouth marketing.

No sign needed.