Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Shared Frames of Reference

I gave a talk on 10 Ways to Market Yourself Without Using the “Obvious” -- i.e. brochures, ads, commercials. One of the ways I suggested was by connecting with clients and colleagues via “news they can use.” That is, stuff of interest to them culled from various media sources. It’s a way to show you care by sharing information, to show you’re thinking of that person, to build relationships.

Welcome to another edition of Not Your Usual Marketing Tips from JDK Marketing Communications Management.

Here’s a case in point. My sister e-mailed to me an online video interview with Buffalo Bob Smith. (If you have to ask who that is, chances are you’re too young to remember…)

Well, after I saw the interview with Howdy Doody’s “best buddy,” I found myself wrapped in the sanctum sanctorum of nostalgia. I had to immediately forward the interview to around 30 or so fellow Baby Boomers.

Ten of them responded in some fashion or another. (Not a bad “direct mail” response, by the way – around 30 per cent!)

Gene Fitzpatrick, Senior Mortgage Consultant with American Home Mortgage and a networking colleague was one of those who responded. And in a most wistful way:

“My younger brother, Tom, and I were on the show, probably in 1953 to 1955.

“Tom was asked by Buffalo Bob, ‘If you had a million dollars, what would you do with it?’
Tom replied, ‘I would keep half and give the other half to the poor people.’ No lie. We still talk about it when we get together.

“We really had some great times growing up in Jamaica (Queens, NY). We always looked forward to the annual Holiday show put on by the Gertz Department store. They had this club for the kids called the Gertz PIE club. I don’t remember what the PIE stood for, but it didn’t have to do with food.

“A few weeks before Christmas, Gertz rented out a movie theater on Jamaica Avenue and it was first come, first served. The doors opened at 9 AM or so. Tom and I always got there early so we could sit in the front row. We had a better chance of getting selected to pick someone’s name out of a box. If we were selected, we would receive a nice gift just for making the pick. The prizes would range from a model car kit to various toys and even a bike. Tom won a bike one time. In between the prizes, they played movies and had entertainment. It was all free to PIE club members. We went until we were 13 or so.

“Thanks for the memories.”

You’re welcome, Gene.

Staying top of mind with your colleagues, clients, prospects, whomever, doesn’t take much effort, really. A little video interview to a selected group of individuals can do the trick. And if it doesn’t translate into any monetary rewards right away, well, that’s okay.

Think of how much richer we are just for having shared the anecdote.

Joel Kweskin

Incidentally, here’s the video interview with Buffalo Bob Smith, of “Howdy Doody” fame:


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