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I get by with a Little Help…

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courtesy of creativecommons.org

Its  Been a Tough Year

2008 has been arough year for all of us, not just in the real estate business. The economy was experiencing a recession that wouldn’t be recognized until the end of the year, we had contentious primaries, and a tough election, the war in Iraq dragged on, and every time you turned on the news the was another company going under.

The Good News is its Almost Over

This is the time of year when there are holidays for everyone Hannukah, Christmas, Kwanza, and even Festivus for-the-rest-of-us. And its a time when we look for things ot be grateful about. Me, I’m grateful the year is almost over and we can start on a fresh one, battered and bruised though we may be from this one. I’m grateful for my son, and daughter-in-law, and the manner in which her family embraced me and shared their strength with me.  And I’m grateful for all of the people that I found in my computer, and connected with in real life. They have been support and strength I needed to get through my challenges this year. They have been there for me every day when I needed them, though they asked little in return.

HO,HO,HO

And in the holiday spirit (which we imbue to all holidays, even when they don’t actually share it) I thought that this would be a wonderful time for each of us to take a moment and get away from the tough times we had this year, and focus on what we are grateful for.  If you have taken a moment away from your holiday celebration to read this, please take another moment and share with me what you have to be grateful for in 2008.  And do me a favor please? Have a wonderful holiday season, get yourself focused on the good things in your life and have a great year in 2009!

Bill is an unusual blend of Old & New - The CEO Century 21 Advantage Gold (Philadelphia's Largest Century 21 company and BuzzBuilderz (a Social Media Marketing Company), He is a Ninja CEO, blending the Web 1 and 2.0 world together in a fashion that stretches the fabric of the universe. You can follow him on twitter @Billlublin or Facebook or LinkedIn.

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Peter Maclennan

    December 24, 2008 at 4:34 pm

    I am grateful for all the interesting people I have met this year. Even though the market was tough, the people I have met have been invaluable and will be a resource for life.

  2. Monika

    December 24, 2008 at 4:49 pm

    Happy Holidays Bill. It sure has been a rough year for many of us. I’m hopeful that 2009 will be better.

  3. Bill Lublin

    December 24, 2008 at 6:26 pm

    Peter; That’s what we all need to focus on Best wishes for the holiday

    Monika; You and Jay are two of the good things to come from this year. Best wishes to you both and I join you in your wishes that next year be a better one for all of us.

  4. Heather Elias

    December 24, 2008 at 9:24 pm

    Bill,

    Love and hugs to you this holiday season. 2008 has been an interesting year of personal growth for me, amid a challenging market climate. I am most grateful for the clarity of what is most important to me in this world, and the peace of mind to know what I am striving toward. As difficult as this year has been, I have made so many new friendships (including yours!) that I am eternally grateful for, and have grown so much.

    Here’s to a new year, a fresh start, and great successes to come!

    Cheers,
    Heather

  5. Jeff Turner

    December 25, 2008 at 10:50 am

    Bill… you are one of the gifts I received this year. I just got to “open” you long before Christmas morning. And quite a gift you are. 🙂

  6. Anne Rubin

    December 25, 2008 at 10:15 pm

    Bill,
    I bet you thought I didn’t pay attention, but I’m grateful that you wrote this so that I can thank you for all that you have given to me in the years that we have been together, all that you continue to give. I hope I return to you and others in the same way. Here’s to 2009 and beyond.

  7. Bill Lublin

    December 25, 2008 at 11:03 pm

    @Heather; It has been wonderful watching you this year and seeing your infectious smile Look forward to seeing you soon

    @Jeff You are easily as much of a present for me as I may be for you. Just the relationship we’ve begun would be enough ROI for a lifetime of social media 😉

    @Anne Its scary how long we’ve been in each others lives, and all of the changes we’ve seen in the business, but I hope we have much more to see and more growth for us as individuals and for our company – youre a great friend and partner. As you say, here’s to a 2009 and beyond!

  8. Ines

    December 27, 2008 at 1:40 am

    Bill – damn! there you go again making me cry! what’s wrong with you? 🙂

    I am grateful for my on-line community…but most of all for having the wisdom to know that they are more than just people I know.

    They can be life long friends that I will treasure more than anyone could realize. You, my friend, are one of those treasures…and I look forward to getting to know you even better this coming year.

  9. Benn Rosales

    December 27, 2008 at 10:47 am

    Bill, I have so many things to be grateful for this year, so it’s really tough to list my top, so I’ll just say thank you for caring enough to make our list of greatness we’ve been blessed with…

    Have a Blessed Season into the New Year and beyond.

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Business Marketing

What entreprenuers can learn about branding from trendy startups

(BUSINESS MARKETING) What’s the secret of focused startup branding, and how can you apply it to large enterprises?

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A set of wine from Craft Hugo, showing off pleasing branding in labels.

Think of your favorite brand. Is it the product they offer or the branding that you love? Exactly – brand ethos reigns supreme, especially with those trendy, aesthetically-pleasing startups (I never thought Glossier had good makeup, but I’d be lying if I said I didn’t visit their website once or twice a month).

So let’s break it down.

Co-founder of Red Antler – a company that assists startups in creating successful branding – Emily Heyward believes in a few branding truths.

Firstly, you have to make sure not to market your brand as a single product or experience. Doing so, she says, will pigeonhole you and thus truncate your ability to expand and offer new products and services (she gives MailChimp, known almost exclusively for email marketing, as an example).

What Heyward does say to do is instead market an idea. For example, the brand Casper (one of Antler’s clients) markets itself as a sleep company instead of a mattress company. By doing this, they kept the door open to eventually offer other products, like pillows and bedding.

Heyward states that this “power of focus” is a way to survive – with countless other startups offering the same product or service, you have to position your company as offering something beyond the product. Provide a problem your customer didn’t know they had and offer an innovative solution through your product.

Ever used Slack, the app-based messenger? There were other messengers out there, so focus of Slack’s branding is that regular messaging is boring and that their app makes it more fun. And customers eat it up.

How can this logic apply to mid-to-large enterprises? How can you focus on one specific thing?

Again, placing emphasis on brand over products is essential – what is it about what you offer that makes your customers’ lives better? It’s more cerebral than material. You’re selling a better life.

Another thing to remember is that customers are intrigued by the idea of new experiences, even if the product or service being offered is itself not new. Try not to use dated language that’s colored by a customers’ preexisting feelings. Instead, find an exciting alternative – chat solutions are desperately trying move away from the word “chat”, which can bring to mind an annoying, tedious process, even though that is in fact what they offer.

Broadening the idea of focused brand ethos to a large company can be difficult. By following these tips and tricks from startups, your company can develop a successful brand ethos that extends beyond your best product or service.

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Business Marketing

Spruce up your product images with Glorify (just in time for Black Friday!)

(BUSINESS MARKETING) Want professional, customizable product images for your company? Consider Glorify’s hot Black Friday deal.

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Glorify app lets you create beautiful designs for your products.

Glorify, the app that creates high converting, customizable product images for your business, is offering a lifetime deal for $97 this Black Friday. In just a few clicks, you can transform one of Glorify’s sleek templates into personalized, professional-looking content – and now, you don’t have to pay that monthly fee.

Whether your business is in electronics, beauty, or food & drink, Glorify offers a range of looks that will instantly bring your product images to the next level. With countless font styles and the ability to alter icon styles, shadows and other elements, you can access all the perks of having your own designer without the steep price.

In 2019, Glorify was launched – the app was soon voted #2 Product of the Day and nominated for Best Design Tool by Product Hunt. Since then, they have cultivated a 20k+ user base!

Glorify 2.0, which was launched last week, upgrades the experience. The new and improved version of the app is complete overhaul of intuitive UI improvements and extra features, such as:

  • background remover tool
  • templates based on popular product niches and themes
  • design bundles for your website/store, social media
  • annotation tool
  • upload your brand kits and organize your projects under different brands
  • 1 click brand application
  • & much more!

“But the most important aspect of Glorify 2.0, is that it comes with a UI that sets us up for future scalability for all our roadmap features”, said CEO of Glorify Omar Farook, who himself was a professional graphic designer.

Farook’s dream was to provide a low-cost design service for the smaller businesses that couldn’t otherwise afford design services. Looking through reviews of the app, it’s evident that Glorify does just that – it saves the user time and money while helping them to produce top-notch product images for their brand on their own.

Glorify is one of the many new design-based apps that make producing content a breeze for entrepreneurs, such as Canva. As someone who loves design but doesn’t have the patience for Creative Cloud, I personally love this technology. However, Glorify is unique in that it is the only product-driven design app. All you have to do is upload your photo!

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Business Marketing

This new Chipotle location will be fully digital

(BUSINESS NEWS) In the wake of the pandemic and popularity of online delivery, Chipotle is joining the jump to online-only locations, at least to test drive.

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Chipotle exterior, possibly moving to a fully digital restaurant space soon.

A lot of industries have switched to an online-only model in the wake of the pandemic. Most of them have made sense; between abundant delivery options and increased restrictions on workers, moving away from the traditional storefront paradigm isn’t exactly a radical choice. Chipotle making that same decision, however, is a plot twist of a different kind—yet that’s exactly what they’re doing with their first online store.

To be clear, the chain isn’t doing away with their existing locations; they’re just test-driving a “digital” location for the time being. That said, the move to an online platform raises interesting questions about the future of the restaurant industry—if not just Chipotle itself.

The move to an online platform actually makes a lot of sense for businesses like Chipotle. Since the classic Chipotle experience is much less centered on the “dining” aspect than it is on the customizability of food options, putting those same options online and giving folks some room to deliver both decreases Chipotle’s physical footprint and, ostensibly, opens up their services to more people.

It’s also a timely move given the sheer number of people who are sheltering in place. A hands-on burrito assembly line is not the optimal place to be in a pandemic, but there’s no denying the utilitarian appeal of Chipotle’s products. To that end, having another restaurant wherein you have the option to order a hearty meal with everything you like—which is also tailored to your dietary needs—is a crucial step for consumers.

Chipotle’s CTO, Curt Garner, says he is hoping this online alternative will offer a “frictionless” experience for diners.

As a part of that frictionless experience, consumers will be able to order in several different mediums. Chipotle’s website and their mobile app are the preferred choices, while services like GrubHub will also be available should you choose to order through a third-party. The idea is simple: To bring Chipotle to you with as little fuss as possible.

For now, Chipotle is committing to the single digital location to see how consumer demand pans out. Should the model prove successful, they plan to move forward with implementing additional digital locations nationwide.

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