Action will be rewarded

The property market was crazy 2 years ago.

I know this, because my wife and I were trying to buy a house at the time.

Houses were selling at auction for ridiculous money, and we simply couldn’t compete.

So we took a different approach:

– We dropped handwritten notes into the letterboxes of houses we liked (70 in total)
– We spent $500 on Facebook ads (asking people in Tauranga to sell us their house)
– And we worked our networks, asking anyone and everyone if they knew someone thinking of selling

But despite our best efforts, none of it worked – so back to the drawing board we went.

And a month later, after missing out on a bunch more properties, we realised the problem. The problem was, we were focusing our energy on new listings, just like our competitors – other home buyers.  Read More

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Reverse Psychology

“Don’t buy anything for Dad this Father’s day”

That’s the subject line of an email I received from Cactus Outdoor Clothing yesterday, and whoever wrote it deserves a medal.

They deserve a medal, because they managed to cut through the barrage of Father’s Day email marketing efforts, and flip the ‘buy this thing for Dad’ approach completely on its head.

The email from Cactus goes on to explain that most Dad’s simply want to spend time with their family, so you don’t need to buy them anything. But if you must buy them something, outdoor gear would be a great choice.

Well played Cactus Outdoor. Well played.

As a business, you recognised that consumers are sick and tired of being sold to, so you took a different approach – and your subject line had my attention instantly.

And even though you said not to, I want to buy something from you. Maybe a mountain bike bag for my next trip.


If you’d like your email campaigns to cut through inbox clutter like this one from Cactus does, let’s meet and brainstorm your approach.

ps – here’s the email from Cactus Outdoor. There are a few other things I’d change, but the most important thing (the subject line) is first class.

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Riding shotgun

Over the past 9 months, I’ve been working on a side project.

And it’s nothing to do with Likeable.

In fact, it’s not even digital, it’s a real world product – a kids mountain bike seat.

It’s called the shotgun seat, and it’s designed by my friend Tom who’s pretty handy at making stuff.

Anyway, earlier this year, the local paper saw one of our Facebook posts, and asked to run a story. And towards the end of the interview, they asked for our web address.

So I made one up. Read More

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The 1 key to building a successful brand

Moped after 5 with Helen Camilleri

(Moped run events for marketing professionals in the sunny BOP. Learn more about moped on their website, or read on to hear what Helen Camilleri had to say when she recently presented to the moped crowd.)

When Helen worked with toy giant LEGO® some years ago, she was taken through a sort of symbolic ‘birth’, and found herself in an environment of oversized proportions. It was called The Land of Childhood. All employees at the time were given this experience to help them see things from a child’s perspective. How cool.

There’s no doubt about it – LEGO® is a fun brand.

And The Land of Childhood was one tool that instilled in employees what LEGO® is all about. It defined a certain culture, and at the end of the day, that’s what really attracts customers to your brand. Your culture.

“Your culture is your brand.”    

Currently, Helen is the head of People and Brand at Gallagher, a successful innovation based company that sells fuel pumps, security systems and animal management systems for farmers.

So how do you create a cohesive brand for a business like Gallagher, a company that offers such different products? Read More

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Wrong job

I’m in the wrong job, and I’ve only just realised.

You see, this time last year, Likeable Ryan joined the team.

And for the past 12 months, Ryan’s been heading up sales, whilst I’ve been co-ordinating our team.

Everything’s been fine and dandy, until our recent strengths finder session that is, when it became obvious that Ryan and I are actually doing the exact opposite of what we should be.

Because through strengths finder, we discovered that Ryan’s natural abilities lie in supporting teams, developing people and building culture. And we learnt that my strengths lie in strategic thinking and ideation – which is helpful during conversations with potential (and existing) clients. Read More

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Losing customers

It sucks when a customer leaves.

Take KOKO Classics, a client that left us in June this year.

KOKO sell industrial and classic inspired furniture. It’s high-end stuff, available online and in-store.

Anyway, before working with us, KOKO’s Facebook page had just 2 or 3 posts per month being published, and very little engagement.

KOKO’s problem was, they didn’t have a process for creating Facebook content, and they didn’t have enough hours in the day to get it done.

“Everyone is so busy. We just don’t have the time to come up with ideas and content for Facebook. We always have good intentions, but invariably something more urgent comes up and Facebook slips”
– Aaron Wiltshire, Marketing & Sourcing Manager

So we started managing KOKO’s Facebook page on their behalf. Read More

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Baking powder

Content marketing.

It’s all the rage right now.

The basic idea? Share valuable info with your prospects and customers, and you’ll attract and retain more business.

It makes sense, but as a concept, it’s nothing new.

In fact, you probably have one of the earliest pieces of content marketing in your kitchen.

First published in 1908, the Sure to Rise Cookery Book by Edmonds is a content marketing masterpiece. Read More

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89 prospects in 8 months

Ezyline build transportable homes.

They cost up to $185k, depending on the plan.

But when it comes to sales, it’s a long process – because it’s hard to know when people will be ready to buy.

So to address this, we worked with Ezyline to create an ebook.

We called it ‘The Compact Guide To Transportable Housing‘.

It’s 12 pages long, and anyone can get it for free by entering their email address on the ezyline website.

Ezyline’s ebook covers topics like; the difference between kitset and prefab homes, what’s involved in transporting a house, and a bunch of other helpful stuff (you get the idea). Read More

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Information overload

“You can do anything, but not everything”

I love this quote from productivity guru David Allen.

It’s especially relevant with digital marketing, because there’s an avalanche of online activities to engage in, and it’s simply not possible to do everything.

So that’s why you need just a couple of key digital metrics. So you can focus on the online activities that actually move the needle for your business, and ignore the stuff that doesn’t. Read More

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Rotorua is famous for its mountain biking.

In the redwoods alone, there are over 100 trails to choose from, with more than 150 kilometers of single-track.

Thankfully there are signs everywhere, so it’s easy for visitors to find iconic trails like Billy T, Split Enz and Hot X Buns.

But there’s a problem for out-of-town riders who visit the redwoods. It’s connecting the trails. Read More

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