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Staying focused


This is the fabulous 'Head of Invention' by Eduardo Paolozzi, which can be found in front of the Design museum in London. It's a head stuffed full of possibilities and ideas but fragmented by distractions from every angle. Ever feel like there just aren't enough hours in the day?

"Don't say you don't have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michaelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson and Albert Einstein." - H. Jackson Brown Jr.
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Perception is 99% reality

For me, Pringle knitwear suggests golfers and odd diamond colour combo's, reserved for unsuspecting Dads and Uncles at Christmas.  Younger generations probably don't recognise the brand at all.  So it was a brave move when early last year, Pringle of Scotland tried to change its stuffy perception and hit a new demographic at the same time, with its youtube outreach.



Being Scottish, I might find this funnier than most, but it's a great example of how major brands are embracing social media to expand their existing audiences.  
I think I might even ask Santa for a cardi.
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Have I heard of you?

On the web, you are what you publish. In cyberspace it seems that familiarity does not breed contempt, but rather puts our fears at ease. The more we know about you the better.

That's why the 'have I heard of you?' question is so important. It's the starting point for every decision - which brand to buy, which deal to take, who to use? It's all about trust. Knowing, or at least having heard of someone or something, reduces the risk, if only in our perceptions, and helps us move a step closer to buying/choosing and committing our hard earned cash.

With my SME helper hat on, there are some simple ways to increase visibility for yourself and/or your brand.

1. Make sure that as a company, you can express who you are and what you do
It's amazing how often I work with SMEs who can't agree on these basics. Every employee making up their own version confuses customers and reduces sales. Keep it simple and memorable.

2. Have a consistent face to the world
People buy from people, so stop worrying about whether social media is for B2B or B2C and instead think of it as a chance to engage and be seen. Customers are reassured by the same branding, colours and imagery across all media you use, so stick with it.

3. Look for listeners
Building visibility with niche groups, is far more beneficial for SMEs than trying to shout over the noise of a mass market. Who is going to be most receptive to what you have to say? Look for the smallest, most defined group you can e.g. 40+ women, living in London, with a passion for knitting etc. Find them and amaze them and you'll never have to worry about being invisible again.
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What's this blog title all about?

I once read that to really enjoy life you should practise being a lamp, a ladder or a lifeboat i.e. helping others to see new things, achieve their goals and know they can ultimately rely on you.  So, that's it - the title of my blog and a daily mantra.  I've also read that no-one actually reads body text any more, which makes titles even more important and suggests that anyone stumbling upon this, will forever think I'm a drama teacher.
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