This Week on the Rainey Radar

If you aren’t familiar with an agile marketing approach here’s a great place to start. The agile approach was created years ago in relation to software development but the principles have been applied to marketing and should be considered by any marketer looking to see quicker and greater impact of their efforts.

Content marketing is only as good as the copywriter behind the words. Earlier this week I came across a great post that is a great resource for anyone responsible for hiring copywriters.

This actually happened almost two weeks but it should still be on everyone’s radar. It’s the release of Michael Hyatt’s new book Platform. For anyone involved in sales, marketing or leadership of any kind this is a must read. Check out Michael’s podcast where he introduces the book as well.

Setting Goals Are Really Cool (quote from my 8 year old)

I’m sure you have heard this quote multiple times throughout your life – “from the mouths of babes”. Earlier tonight I was talking with my 8 year old, Judah. He was discussing with me his goals that he filled out in Seth Godin’s Pick Four book (I purchased a copy for each of my kids). As we were talking he said, “I bet a lot of people’s lives have been changed because of this book – because they set goals.” He said, “It’s very cool to set goals and then if you achieve your goals your life will be a lot better.”

I couldn’t have said it better!


Establishing Trust (part 2)

I’m currently working my way through Tom Peters’ new book The Little Big Things – 163 Ways to Pursue Excellence. His 36th “little thing” caught my attention and struck a real chord with me as I thought about this month’s column. It also caused me to reflect on a similar thing I would do when I was managing different retail stores.

Peters calls it committing “Acts of Deliberate Relationship Enhancement”. The discipline began after Peters read an interview with former Treasury secretary Hank Paulson. Before becoming the Treasury secretary Paulson was the boss at Goldman Sachs. During the first week of each New Year he would call 60 CEO’s to wish them Happy New Year. Tom Peters had a brief stint at the White House in the mid 70’s. One New Year’s Eve he spent eight or nine hours on the phone, calling 100 people he had worked with – in agencies all over Washington and embassies around the world – to thank them for their help the prior year. He readily admits that he was purposely engaging in an Act of Deliberate Relationship Enhancement.

This practice isn’t about false sincerity, people can spot that a mile away, it’s about connecting with the people who support you and have linked up with you and your business. So, make it a priority to CALL, NOT EMAIL 20 to 50 people in the next five days. After this pick a time at the end or beginning of the year and begin a tradition of connecting with those very important people in your business. Thank them for their support and let them know how much your appreciate them and that you are looking forward to strengthening your relationship with them in the coming year.

Life Story

Chris Brogan issued a challenge over the weekend: post a blog regarding the importance of "story" in our lives.  The challenge comes on the heels of Chris reading Don Miller's new book "A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: What I Learned Whiled Editing My Life".

So, does story matter? Does OUR story matter?

From the parables of Jesus to bedtime stories, from old wives tales to urban legends,  stories make up our lives. Stories convey truth, address eternal issues, stir emotion – each day of our life, our story is being written.

What I've come to realize throughout my life is that each and every person has a story and it's worth hearing. So many people think that if they don't have a rags to riches story or how they overcame a drug addiction or how they survived a near death experience they don't have a story. But that is wrong thinking – each of us need to embrace life – the good, the bad and even the indifferent parts and live the story that we were created to live.

Some of the greatest memories I have are from the past twenty one years of tucking my kids into bed and telling them about my childhood. My kids have heard those stories so much they can recite them back, but they love hearing them over and over again. And each day my kids are writing their own story that they will share with their family.

Stories are the fabric of life and society – write yours, live yours – every day.

Book Review: Currencies That Buy Credibility (final)

In Part two of the book Tom gives some great examples of
companies putting the “Currencies” into practice. Some examples include

One Hour Heating and Air Conditioning became the
nation’s first heating and cooling service company to offer on-time service.
The created believability by fulfilling the promise of “Always on time or you
don’t pay a dime”. They risked material wealth to build credibility.

When talking about the currency of “Time and
Energy” Tom highlights the trusted and go-to online retailer REI. REI takes their
content to an amazing level by offering expert advice to outdoor experts or
wannabees. What’s your expertise? How can you highlight it?

The currency of “Opportunity” highlights toy
store “Geppetto’s Workshop”. A unique toy story that differentiates itself and
prides itself in NOT carrying any toy that is made of plastic or requires
batteries.  They go all out so that they
don’t become ordinary. The absence of “popular and trendy” toys is what attracts
the crowds.

Chapter Seven gives great insight into how
transparency builds extreme credibility. and Google are both cases
in point.

The currency of “Reputation and Prestige”
relates the story of how Patagonia put a stake in the ground that either
attracts or repels their customer. By staying true to their core values they
have continued to build out their reputation and establish themselves as a
brand of prestige.

“Safety and Well-being” are the final currency Tom
tackles with a great story about identity protection specialists Lifelock.


the final section of the book Tom wraps it up by challenging us to ask three
important questions:


1.       What
are your company’s defining characteristics?

2.       What
signals do you decisions send?

3.       Is
there conflict between what you are saying and who you are being?


that buy Credibility is a book that will be a perennial read for you.

Book Review: Currencies That Buy Credibility (part two)

Tom's definition of each currency frame the rest of the book and bring a clarity to how we can put into place programs, processes and policies that increase our credibility. Today's focus is on the first – material wealth.

Material Wealth – Tom uses the example of Nordstrom's and their legendary guarantee that allow customer's to return the product at any time for a full refund. The he asks the following question, "How might your business take on the buyer's risk to strengthen credibility?"

What other ways, beyond a liberal return policy, you have seen that build credibility?

Is there a line, when it comes to this currency, that a company can not afford to cross?

Book Review: Currencies That Buy Credibility (part one)

A couple of days ago I finished reading Currencies That Buy Credibility by Tom Wanek. In addition to being an international speaker Tom is an adjunct faculty member of the Wizard Academy founded by another great author and marketing "wizard" Roy H. Williams.

In a day and time where trust is at an all-time low and marketing messages are "unbelievable" Tom provides us with a map for building credibility and regaining trust with our audience. He says, "The believability of your company's marketing message is directly related to your willingness to risk or spend one of six resources. And the more you risk or spend, the more believable your message becomes.

The six currencies that Tom outlines are:

  1. Safety & Well-Being
  2. Time & Energy
  3. Material Wealth
  4. Reputation & Prestige
  5. Power & Control
  6. Opportunity

Over the next several days I'll be posting my takeaways and learning from this great book.