Top of Mind Thursday October 18, 2018: Final Sale–No Returns Accepted

Top of Mind Thursday

On Monday, Sears Holdings, the iconic brand that started as a mail-order firm in 1893 and at one time had annual revenue of over $100 billion, declared bankruptcy.

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This was no surprise. The retail chain, which was combined with Kmart in 2005, has been on a downward spiral for the last 20 years. Their stores were messy and unfocused. They lost track of their key customers, and, as a result, had no competitive differentiator. Newer chains like Walmart and Target came in and ate their lunch.

We can blame the rise of ecommerce and Amazon, the decline of retail storefronts, the mistake of taking on huge amounts of debt–or perhaps all of the above.

But the sad part is that before there was an Amazon, Sears was the Amazon of retailing. They built such brands as Kenmore, Craftsman, Allstate, DieHard, and Discover. But more importantly Sears invented mail order sales–selling everything from clothes to farm equipment to home building kits through a network of catalog stores that blanketed the country.

There was no one in a better position in the late 20th century to become the colossus of online retailing than Sears. Not only did they miss the chance to hit it out of the ballpark–they didn’t even suit up for the game. Sears management mistakenly thought they were a retail department store chain, totally ignoring the fact that they had built a link to most households in America.

What killed Sears was not ecommerce or leveraged debt. It was a lack of vision. And that’s something that can’t be returned or exchanged.

Contact me to find out how to get heard above the noise.


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

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

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Top of Mind Thursday October 11, 2018: Waiting For the Storm

Top of Mind Thursday

The rash of severe weather events continued this week with Hurricane Michael, the strongest storm to hit the Florida panhandle. This comes on the heels of Hurricane Florence, which battered the Carolinas just a few weeks ago.

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I’ve lived through a hurricane. When there’s one headed towards you, the only thing you can do is grab what you can and get out of the way. Same thing with wildfires, earthquakes, tornados, etc. Your first priority is to get your family out alive.

But the question is what do you do afterwards? Some people pause just slightly before jumping in and going back to rebuilding exactly what they had before.  There’s a logic in that. You just want to return to your normal ordinary life as soon as possible. But you may be setting yourself up to be right in the path of the next hurricane.

Others take time to consider this an opportunity to do things differently. Should I rebuild in the same place in the same way? What can I do better? Given that I need to start from scratch, where should I focus my time and energy? How can I use this horrible experience to create something of value?

The lesson for the rest of us is we shouldn’t wait to be hit by a “storm” of any sort–financial, medical, or personal, as well as physical danger.  We can learn from what’s happened to others and take action now–in all aspects of our lives.

If a strong storm disrupted your life today, what would you do differently tomorrow? Why not take those actions today? Why wait for the storm to hit?

The American Red Cross supports victims of emergencies in time of need. Help support their efforts.

Contact me to find out how to get heard above the noise.


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

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

Download a FREE chapter now.

What are people saying?

Buy now.


Let us help your business rise to the top.

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

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Why the Question IS the Answer

Joseph Bradley
Global VP, Digital & IoT Advanced Services
Cisco Systems
www.questioneering.net

Joseph M. Bradley is global vice president of the Digital & IoT Professional Services Organization at Cisco, and senior research fellow for the Global Center for Digital Business Transformation at IMD. In these roles, he leads a team of multidisciplinary experts and technologist who help CXOs and government leaders transform into digital organizations.

Joseph built the foundation for Cisco’s Internet of Things strategy and the Internet of Everything Practice, by directing Cisco’s influential research that determined $19 trillion of value associated with embracing the Internet of Everything. Previously, he led the Research & Economics, Strategic Communications, and Operations functions of Cisco Consulting. Before Cisco, Joseph was President at Uptake Technologies, CEO at C3 Communications, and Vice President General Manager of the Data Communications group at AT&T.

In this podcast, Joseph tells us why we can’t get the answers we need without asking the right questions. He explains the 3 listening skills that are key for marketers, as well as why Marketing’s dependency on legacy assumptions hurts us. He talks about why AI may be the most transformation technology we’ve seen in a long time and how inclusion and diversity efforts may be transformed through the use of the right questions.


ListenListen to this podcast.


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Just a Moment for Marketing: The World at Your Finger Tips

Linda advises: Aim high and achieve more.

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