Jim Gilbert, President of FDMA Givin’ it all away…


Jim Gilbert, President of FDMA Givin' it all away...

As President of the Florida Direct Marketing Association (www.fdma.org) I love to officiate over our monthly events. My favorite part of leading? Doing raffles and giveaways. Here I am giving away a $50 gift certificate to our host location Paragon Theaters.

Website Goal? 6 Tips for ALL Ecommerce Companies to Capture EVERY Visitor to Your Website…


One of the universal truths I see is a lack of understanding by many marketers, from newbie to experienced, of what their website is really for. I know, I know, marketers always say the right thing: It’s about conversion. When I look at their website and ask them what their site conversion rate is, I hear them proudly state, “I convert 2 percent, look how good I’m doing!” (And of course some marketers don’t even know what their site conversion rate is.)

Here’s a better goal: Click here to see the full article on Retail Online Integration Magazine’s site.

Want more info on Gilbert Direct Marketing, including a FREE website review?  Use the form below…

Advertising on your head? (I was quoted in this article on Huffington Post


 

No matter what you think of this method of advertising, it certainly is unique.  I was interviewed for this article about one of my former clients, DeliverLean using Mohawk Gaz to advertise their business on his head.  So what do you think of this?  Effective?  Read the article for my opinion: Click here

Mohawk Gaz image, from article in Sun Sentinel and Huffington Post

Come see The 9 Immutable Laws of Social Media Marketing Live in Miami this Saturday


More info on Mashable’s Social Media Day Miami and the full schedule can be found here: http://miamisocialmedia.com/

Social media Day Miami 2012

A simple and basic social media marketing plan


This short presentation I did for one of my clients lays out the basics of how to drive engagement and action via social media channels for any company.  Want to get started in Social media marketing?  Start here…

 

These two presentations on Social Media made it to the homepage of slideshare.net.


I love it when a plan comes together.  On Friday and today my presentations made it up to the top of slideshare.net’s home page.  Check them out:

 

Follow up: A tale of two CompUSA’s, extended warranties and the great social media bully pulpit


Two weeks ago in my blog (article here), I totally skewered CompUSA and their warranty company (found out it’s Assurant Solutions) for not doing the right thing and honoring the extended warranty I purchased for an HDTV.

Within days of publishing that article, pushing it out to my Facebook, Plaxo, Twitter connections and posting it in the Linkedin Groups I belong to, I got a call from CompUSA.

Since I was driving in the car at the time, I never did get the person’s name, so lets call him Good Corporate Samaritan, or Sam for short.  Essentially Sam wanted me to know two things:

First that the CompUSA I purchased my TV and my extended warranty from was not in business anymore and that the NEW CompUSA had nothing to do with the old one.

Secondly, he wanted me to know that he had made arrangements with their (the old CompUSA) warranty company for me to get a replacement TV.

Sam assured me that the new CompUSA would never treat a valued customer so shabbily.  In that conversation, I told Sam that I believed heavily in the power of social media as the great equalizer that can right many wrongs that bad companies perpetrate on their clients.

I also told Sam that once I received my replacement TV, I would write a follow up and let people know that I had my CompUSA’s wrong.  So for Sam and all of the employees at CompUSA, I just wanted to let you know that I did indeed receive a replacement TV on Thursday, and that the NEW CompUSA came to the rescue.

Thanks Sam!  Much appreciated!

That said, I am a very lucky guy in that I have a bully pulpit with a decent sized following to preach to.  (and thanks to all for listening by the way!!!)

Yet I have to wonder if Joe Everyman, would be as successful at getting justice from CompUSA or for that matter any company without said bully pulpit as a platform.  I guess it depends on the company really, and how customer-centric they actually are.

Over the course of the next few weeks, I am going to further explore what it means for a company to be truly customer centric.  I have a few great case studies for you.

Before I go today let me leave you with my favorite quote and essential operating concept that drives my business practices.  The quote is from Peter Drucker and is brilliant in its elegant simplicity…

“There is only one valid definition of business purpose – to create a customer.

Companies are not in business to make things… but to make customers.”

I hope I am preaching to the choir here!  What are your thoughts?

Florida Direct Marketing Association Presentation on Facebook


This is the latest presentation I did for the Florida Direct Marketing Association.  Entitled Facebook: Breaking the Sales and Engagement Myth, it is a case study on how The Fresh Diet builds engagement, trust and sales on their Facebook page.  We had over 100 people in attendence, once again for the 2nd time in 3 years I have lead off in January with a home run for the FDMA (every once in a while you have to pat yourself on the back right?)

BERNHART ASSOCIATES’ EMPLOYMENT Q1 SURVEY RELEASED: 2011 STARTS OFF STRONG; DIRECT MARKETING HIRING TO REBOUND


Layoffs, Hiring Freezes Hit Multi-Year Lows
Owatonna, MN, January 18, 2011—Digital and direct marketers are planning a surge in hiring this winter with agencies leading the way, according to Bernhart Associates’ Quarterly Digital and Direct Marketing Employment Report for the first quarter of 2011.

“I expected a bounce, but nothing like this, which is very encouraging,” said Jerry Bernhart, leading direct marketing recruiter and Principal of Bernhart Associates Executive Search, LLC, which conducts the quarterly employment survey.  “This is the most positive quarterly improvement we’ve ever seen in the 11-year history of our quarterly survey.”

The following are key findings from Bernhart Associates’ Quarter 1 (Q1) survey:

• Fifty-two percent (52%) of companies responding to the survey said they plan to add to staff in Q1, up from 41% last quarter (Q4).

• Sixteen percent (16%) of respondents currently have a hiring freeze, down sharply from 35% in Q4.

• The percentage of companies planning layoffs in Q1 dropped to 4%, compared with 8% in Q4.

• Sixty-three percent (63%) of agencies responding to the survey plan to add staff, with none planning cutbacks and only one agency reporting a hiring freeze.

Survey results show that marketing hiring budgets are still being pinched on the client side, which are lagging the agencies and service providers in planned hiring.  But Bernhart notes that nearly one out of every two marketers still will have positions to fill in the current quarter.

“Business-to-business hiring plans outpaced business-to-consumer, and also reported fewer expected layoffs and hiring freezes,” added Bernhart.

Bernhart said that while direct marketing staffing this year may not reach the boom levels seen prior to 2008, he expects hiring to continue building momentum in 2011, noting the following key trends:

• Digital and direct marketers are revising upward their projections for 2011 as margins improve and demand picks up, creating the need for more staffing.

• The number of online digital and direct marketing-related job listings has been up sharply in the past couple months.

• Bernhart said he has seen a “dramatic” decline in the number of resumes from recently laid-off digital and direct marketers.

• Bernhart further noted that he is fielding more calls from companies asking about executive searches, adding, “you don’t see that happen unless job recovery is taking hold.”

Among those companies planning to add staff, Bernhart said digital and direct marketing openings will be across the board and at all levels.  “Usually we see a couple of job categories stand out, but this time it’s very broad-based with marketing, analytics, and sales topping the list, along with a strong showing among IT-related positions.”

Bernhart Associates’ Q1 hiring survey was emailed on January 5 and 12 to more than 11,000 senior executives, hiring managers, human resource officials, and other key participants in online and offline direct marketing.  A total of 399 organizations responded to the widely followed employment-trends survey.

According to the Direct Marketing Association (DMA), in 2009, marketers—commercial and nonprofit—spent $149.3 billion on direct marketing, which accounted for 54.3% of all ad expenditures in the United States.  Measured against total U.S. sales, these advertising expenditures generated approximately $1.783 trillion in incremental sales.  DMA further reported that, in 2009, there were 1.4 million direct marketing employees in the U.S.  Their collective sales efforts directly supported 8.4 million other jobs, accounting for a total of 9.9 million American jobs.

Results of past surveys can be found in the DMA’s annual Statistical Fact Book and on Bernhart Associates Executive Search, LLC’s website.

Companies interested in participating in the Bernhart Associates’ Quarterly Digital and Direct Marketing Employment Report should send an email to survey@bernhart.com with “Opt-In” in the subject line, or they can sign up directly on the front page of the Bernhart Associates’ website.

####

Download this Press Release as a PDF.

Please direct executive search inquires to jerry@bernhart.com or call 507-451-4270.

About Bernhart Associates

Bernhart Associates Executive Search, LLC, is owned by Jerry Bernhart, a
leading and nationally recognized digital and direct marketing recruiter, writer, and
speasker.  Founded in 1991, Bernhart Associates recruits for positions at all levels in
Multichannel Direct Marketing, CRM, E-Commerce, Database Marketing, Business
Development, and Marketing Analytics.  Respected as a leading authority on issues
related to digital and direct marketing recruiting, Jerry is a frequent speaker at
national marketing conferences and is often quoted by the industry news media.  Jerry
has written dozens of articles for the leading online and offline multichannel marketing
publications.

The Bernhart Associates’ Quarterly Digital and Direct Marketing Employment Survey,
now in its eleventh year, has become the most widely followed employment report in
digital and direct marketing and measures employers’ hiring plans for the coming
quarter.  It is the only forward-looking employment survey of its kind in digital and direct marketing and unparalleled in size and scope.

Bernard Silverman and Affiliates, Naperville, IL, contributes research and
analysis for the Bernhart Associates’ Quarterly Digital and Direct Marketing
Employment Report.  Bernie can be reached at bernie@bsilverman.com.

Does humor belong in business?


Folks, business is serious business!

I’ve worked for too many companies who took themselves way too seriously.  And why not be serious – its important work bringing great products to consumers, right?

Wrong!  Given the growth of social media and its ability to put a human face on your companies business, its time to have some fun.  There are so many great options for you these days to inject a little humor into your business (caveat: be real and genuine) with Facebook, Youtube, blogs, etc.

I know I have spoken about them before, but one company I work with, The Fresh Diet is ALL about fun.  Their Facebook page is constantly holding contests, many of which are designed just to be engaging and fun.

Last week we upped the ante on their fun level and created a video spoof of the show Undercover Boss for our customers and fans.  It took us a half a day of shooting and another half a day to edit it (yes we used a professional video company).  The feedback from our customers and fans on Facebook has been great.  We even plan on doing other spoof videos in the future and turning this into a regular event.

So I wanted to share it with you here.  I hope it sparks something for you that you can use with your customers and fans.

On another note, I want to wish each and every one of you a happy and safe holiday!  Speak to you soon!

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