Posts tagged "emoji"

The Case of the Killer Squid

November 17th, 2017 Posted by Uncategorized 0 comments on “The Case of the Killer Squid”

Most mistakes that we make in the normal course of business are not killers. And that’s a good thing of course. If most of the mistakes we made were killers, we wouldn’t be around to learn from them.

As a matter of fact, since most of our mistakes (squids) are not killers, our survival lulls us into a sense of complacency and acceptance. We make a mistake and we think, “well, the last mistake/series of mistakes didn’t hurt us all that much, so let’s just put this behind us as fast as we can and get on with the rest of our lives.”

That’s a dangerous mindset and one of the reasons why I wrote Killer Squids. Your complacency/accepting mindset of your mistakes can be fatal in the long term. As Bob Newhart would say, “Stop it!”

But some mistakes can kill you. Some mistakes are so big and so bad and the consequences so dire…there are Killer Squids.

I extended credit to a friend who was starting a business. Over the objections of my long-suffering wife, I allowed him to rack up bills of $20,000. When his house of cards came crashing down, we were stuck with big paper bills and labor costs. This was not a killer squid, but it could have been. The loss was great enough that it jeopardized our ability to stay in business.

My takeaways from this Squid?

  1. Listen to your wife.
  2. Don’t let friendship cloud your judgment when it comes to extending credit.
  3. Don’t extend too much credit to start-ups.
  4. Don’t let anyone go past a pre-determined amount of credit. Limit your potential losses.
  5. Have your credit policies in place before you encounter a problem.
  6. Know your policies and stick to them no matter what.

These are the lessons I learned (I hope).

This was not a Killer Squid, but it could have been. And there are mistakes that you can make that will kill your business, or your job.

I remember well a Killer Squid that took out a client of mine. Sad.

It was a big project for us; the client requested a bid for scanning and printing a 500 page book; the quantity was 2000. We won the bid and started scanning the pages. Early on in the scanning process, our production expert came to me and said, “hey Kevin, this project is not 500 pages…it’s 500 sheets, front and back. It’s actually 1000 pages.

Uh oh. Our client did not know the difference between pages and sheets. Of course when you are dealing with a 1,000 page book vs a 500 page book, the price is going to go up, a lot.

We quickly communicated the problem and a new quote back to our client, and then it went quiet. Real quiet. Crickets.

But the deadline was fast approaching, and still we heard nothing. We knew our price was good and we were prepared to proceed (not many other printers could knock this job out fast enough), and our client was in a bad situation. And so, our client authorized us to proceed.

We finished the project on time and on the newly approved budget, but our client lost her job. Painful. Killer Squid.


  1. Double check your specifications.
  2. Understand the jargon of the industry.
  3. Slow down and think through ramifications of not understanding all the specs before you begin.

Invest smart; work on your company…not in your company.

May 6th, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized 0 comments on “Invest smart; work on your company…not in your company.”

In a recent survey of business owners, respondents stated that up to 40% of their time was spent on tasks not related to growing their company.

Quite often, the business owner wears multiple hats; CEO, CFO, secretary and the janitor. It’s hard to build a brand when you have so many other things to do.

Try dedicating just 10 minutes per day to building your brand. Small time investments like tweeting, writing a thank you card, crafting a facebook post or calling a longtime client can go a long way. Just like investing money, your efforts will compound over time. Spend 10 minutes a day to help your brand equity become a true asset.

Make memorable moments with a loyalty program

April 29th, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized 0 comments on “Make memorable moments with a loyalty program”

Any sized business can use a creatively crafted loyalty program to entice customers to return frequently and share their experience with others.

Your rewards program doesn’t have to pay out in the form of free product; creating a memorable moment or special privilege for your most loyal customers might be all the motivation someone needs to make your brand their favorite.

Consider creating an ultimate rewards experience at a high price point. The reward could be a tour of your facility, a lunch with the owner, open late/early for a VIP shopping experience, etc. It’s that type of “special privilege” experience that they’ll post to Instagram or FaceBook and send to all of their friends on Snapchat. And that’s exactly what you want!

Emojis = fun in your biz communications ????

April 22nd, 2016 Posted by Uncategorized 0 comments on “Emojis = fun in your biz communications ????”


Emoticons have evolved from text-based happy faces—:)—and frowny faces—:(—to pictograms known as emojis.

Emojis are everywhere in social media posts and SMS messaging. Nearly half of the text found on Instagram are emojis. Marketers are taking notice and using emojis in their marketing. Emojis are a good way to relate to customers in a more personal and fun manner. An image based post can now be captioned with a single emoji and most readers will understand that the image conveys sadness, happiness, humor, etc.

Emojis help communicate a message with feeling and emotion; something that straight text often can’t do.  Have you used emojis in your marketing yet? Tell us about it!