Tracy Petrucci: January 2012

Monday, January 30, 2012

Postage Goes Up. . . Again

If you haven't heard by now, postage will be increasing again at the Post Office. Although many will be frustrated at this, some companies are finding a way to get on your good side through the annoyance.

Less than a year ago, Hallmark introduced postage paid cards, and I saw a lot of promotion for it over the holidays. My first reaction was, "What a good idea!" No digging around for stamps and little 1 cent additions, or fighting the crowds at the post office for holiday stamps.

I'm sure the cost is built in the card price, but still. . . it's the convenience that matters sometimes, right? Would you pay a little more for a postage paid, ready to go card?

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Local Event: In the Executive's Chair

The CSUSM College of Business Administration proudly presents Bill Walton, In the Executive's Chair. Join COBA to hear about Bill's experiences on and off the court, being a great leader and following a great leader (John Wooden), and the successes and failures along the way.

In the Executive's Chair is free to attend and open to the community. Please RSVP here if you would like to attend Bill Walton's presentation. Seating is limited and will all be first-come, first-served.

-Thought I'd pass this along to my San Diego colleagues who are eager to learn about leadership.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Down N Out

I've been sick for most of January this year. As soon as I start to feel better, something else gets me and I'm down again.

Yesterday I thought I was finally in the clear, but as night fell, and today approached, I find myself at square one again. I miss coffee, and I miss red wine. They just don't sound good when you're sick.

Posting will resume once I'm better. Until then. . . tea and tissues.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Blogging: It's OK To Get Personal

Did you ever take a journalism class? I did, a long, long time ago in junior college. I actually really enjoyed it because it was straight forward, fact reporting. Almost. . . easy. Times have definitely changed, and today hard hitting news is just one of the sources of information that floods the net.

The popularity of blogging for business has taken off, but a repeating question I seem to encounter from my clients is, "How personal can I get on my blog?"

The answer is simple: As personal as you want. What is your business? Who are your customers? What is the goal of the blog? There are a few things you need to determine before you can set a blog strategy, but unless you are trying to compete with a major news network (and most small business bloggers are not) relax, you can be as personal as you feel comfortable! It's YOUR blog!

Saturday, January 14, 2012

New PR Special

During January, I am giving my clients a month of free PR as a thank you/Happy New Year gift. It was not full blown PR of course, but just towards one of the sources that I use. So far it has resulted in some great exposure for them and a reminder to me that I love doing a little PR here and there!

I'm offering a special of $75.00/month for the service through May 2012.

Three times a day, Monday through Friday, I scan for pr opportunities for your business. You will be notified when you can submit a tip or product, and I will complete the submission for you once I gather the details from you.

Get in touch with me if you want to know more or get involved.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Big Idea: Funky Water Saving Lights

Environmental artist Tanya Clarke has made "Liquid Lights" with recycled pipes and taps as a reminder to turn off and reserve water in your home. When you buy one, 5 percent of the sale will go to water education charities.

It's obviously very industrial looking, so I'm not quite sure where it would fit in my house. But I can imagine it somewhere very cool, someday. I'll be doing a longer post on this concept soon for Care 2, so stay tuned.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Cost Per Click- Let Those Facebook Ads Run Wild!

There are two types of Facebook ads- Pay per click and pay per impression. Normally I am running both kinds at the same time for my clients. One reason is to judge their performance and then switch to the more cost effective method. But here is the thing, if you have pay per click ads running and nobody is clicking on them, let them run!

It's not costing you anything, and it's still free exposure. Let's use my favorite example of the ballet flat shoes again (see my post on choosing a good ad photo here). I see this ad every single time I'm online. I think I clicked on it once, but I didn't do anything after that.

However I see it over, and over, and over again. I'm memorizing their brand name and the message they are sending, and eventually it is going to stick. Eventually I might even buy the shoes, or tell someone I know about them when I am in a relevant conversation.

If your ads are not performing well with click through rates, try some new ones. But you don't necessarily need to delete the other ones either. All those impressions have a value all their own.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Game Mechanics: Rewards or Punishment?

There's a new app in town, and it's taking game mechanics to a whole new level.

Gympact just launched its iOS app, rewarding users for keeping their goals to work out each week. Well, that is if you keep those goals to begin with. If not, you're looking to pay a price.

Users set a goal for the week, plus a price in dollars they are willing to pay if they don't follow through. If they miss the goal, they pay. If they make it, they get a portion of the cash that everyone payed out when they missed. Participants have to check in for at least 30 minutes at the gym for it to even count. No drive by check ins!

Can we say brilliant? Seriously. At first I thought, "How ridiculous, I'm not going to PAY money if I miss the gym." But they added the reward of getting paid when you do keep your goals. The idea behind it came from a Harvard economics class when founders realized people are more motivated by the idea of loss than gain.

That is the fundamental difference in this type of reward app and the rest out there. And it's one that makes a lot of sense to me. I'm going to keep an eye on it and see how it develops before I decide if it is for me or not. Here's more of the article you can read for more info.