Top of Mind Thursday Memo Archive

Top of Mind Thursday June 22, 2017: Alexa, Let’s Buy Organic

Top of Mind Thursday

Last Friday, Amazon announced they were expanding shopping choices big-time by purchasing organic retail grocer Whole Foods for close to $14 billion.

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With Whole Foods 400+ stores, the deal will give Amazon a physical brick-and-mortar footprint it’s been lacking. It takes the heat off of Whole Foods, whose stock has taken a beating due to lackluster earnings results.

More importantly, it changes the way we think of grocery shopping in general. Amazon’s Prime Fresh service has had limited success. Without physical stores, it’s not clear how fast Amazon could expand into groceries. Now, what was once the world’s largest online bookstore can offer a hybrid online/in-person service that grocery competitors just can’t match.

How will this change Whole Foods? That’s to be determined. Amazon has allowed acquisitions like Zappos to operate fairly autonomously. But expect Amazon to change everything from pricing to what’s offered for sale at Whole Foods. Look for nonperishable items to be offered online through Amazon. And look for all of this to make life harder for companies like Walmart, Kroger, Safeway, etc.

What’s most interesting about this is that it wasn’t a hookup that most people would have predicted. Yet, when we think about it, we see synergies and all kinds of possibilities.

What kind of out-of-the-box connections and partnerships can your business pursue? Are you thinking beyond the conventional? Are you ready to turn your shopping cart upside down and inside out?

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Top of Mind Thursday June 15, 2017: 16 and Won

Top of Mind Thursday

Monday evening, the Golden State Warriors won the NBA Championship by beating the Cleveland Cavaliers, four games to one. 

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The Warriors were favorites to win the series, having come in with the best record in the league and winning all but one of their games in the playoffs, for a post-season record of 16-1.

Yet, this was not exactly a slam-dunk. Last year, the team had the best record in NBA history, was ahead 3-1 in the Finals, and still lost to these same Cavaliers.

It’s what happened after last year’s loss that made this year’s championship possible. On the heels of that last loss, the Dubs aggressively recruited free agent Kevin Durant, who became this year’s Finals MVP.

This meant the team’s existing star players, including two-time league MVP Steph Curry, had to check their egos and create an environment that allowed another superstar to join in and feel part of the team. It meant they had to learn how to support each other when coach Steve Kerr was out for a good part of the season due to complications from back surgery. It meant Kevin Durant had to become part of a great team, rather than the biggest star in town.

How many times do we try to blame the competition when we lose in business–instead of looking at the situation as a challenge? How often do we stop and rethink our business model to take our team to the next level–rather than coddling the star performers?

What do we need to do to get from where we are today to Won?

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Top of Mind Thursday June 8, 2017: The Price of Democracy

Top of Mind Thursday

This morning, former FBI Director James Comey is testifying before Congress as to the details of his exchanges with President Trump.

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It’s expected that Comey’s statements may reveal details the administration wishes were not aired. He’ll talk about what he was asked to do and not do before he was fired by the president, likely contradicting some of what Mr. Trump has said publicly.

In one sense, what Comey says is not nearly as important as the fact that we live in a country where this type of testimony is not only accepted but expected. In most other countries in the world, a ruler can depose of underlings with little regard for what others think. In some countries, those who disagree are imprisoned, poisoned, or just permanently disappear from view.

There may be a bit too much melodrama about this set of hearings, but the bottom line is they’re being held, they’re public, and at the end of the day, Comey will return to his life as a private citizen and not to a government prison.

The price of democracy is that sometimes things get messy, we accept that, and we move on. If we take nothing else from these hearings, it’s that this transparency is something we need to honor and cherish and what we need to defend.

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Top of Mind Thursday June 1, 2017: A Noteworthy Achievement

Top of Mind Thursday

It all started with a summer flash mob.

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Polly van der Linde took the kids from her Bennington, VT summer music camp to the middle of town, where they laid a piano keyboard template in the street and entertained passers-by.

It went over so well that she decided to do something more permanent to celebrate the town’s connection to the arts. Last week, she and a small team of volunteers painted a piano key compass in the middle of the town’s key intersection.

This labor of love has drawn tremendous buzz for a town that doesn’t usually get much attention. Talk about standing out above the noise!

Watch the middle-of-the-night creation of this noteworthy project.

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Marketing Above the NoiseCheck out the new video trailer for my book, Marketing Above the Noise: Achieve Strategic Advantage with Marketing that Matters.

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Buy now.


Limited time to devote to marketing? Check out our weekly Just a Moment for Marketing videos. They only take a minute.

Let us help your business rise to the top.

linda@popky.com
(650) 281-4854
www.leverage2market.com

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