WRITING: Advertising effectiveness

Friday, May 18, 2007

***Begin Quote***

It seems that “advertising”, especially to the inet or to the high value execs, is ineffective at best and a negative at worst. Advertisers are seen as the equal of used car salesmen.

Cute doesn’t cut it.

If anything, the expert’s blog, with the built in reputation of that person, cuts to the head of the line in the buyer or exec’s perception.

That’s why you are seeing the A-list bloggers getting tremendous support from businesses. Enough support to pay like a full time job. It’s like the guide role on a safari.

I think that is how the model is morphing right under everyone’s nose. Traditional ads are less effective; bloggers are guiding the conversation.

***End Quote***

I’d like to think that I have some influence. How’s that for self-delusion?

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RANT:Leadership’s ignorance

Friday, May 18, 2007

http://www.townhall.com/columnists/column.aspx?
UrlTitle=presumptions_of_the_left&ns=ThomasSowell&
dt=05/16/2007

http://tinyurl.com/yqgakj

Presumptions Of The Left
By Thomas Sowell
Wednesday, May 16, 2007

*** begin quote ***

If you start from a belief that the most knowledgeable person on earth does not have even one percent of the total knowledge on earth, that shoots down social engineering, economic central planning, judicial activism and innumerable other ambitious notions favored by the political left.

If no one has even one percent of the knowledge currently available, not counting the vast amounts of knowledge yet to be discovered, the imposition from the top of the notions favored by elites convinced of their own superior knowledge and virtue is a formula for disaster.

***AND***

Yet what the political left, even in democratic countries, share is the notion that knowledgeable and virtuous people like themselves have both a right and a duty to use the power of government to impose their superior knowledge and virtue on others.

***AND***

The ignorance of people with Ph.D.s is still ignorance, the prejudices of educated elites are still prejudices, and for those with one percent of a society’s knowledge to be dictating to those with the other 99 percent is still an absurdity.

*** end quote ***

Yup, dumb is dumb.

NO matter how many degrees or years that person has. The central command can’t possibly be as in control as the person on the front line.

That’s why the free market does so well. Many distributed agents all evaluating options and making choices. Important decisions with skin in the game. The consumer has all the information, the scarce resource allocation unit aka money, and the needs to be satisfied. What better person to be in charge of making decisions.

The free marketplace is at the same time the arbiter of all these conflicting demands for scarce resources and the judge that makes sure everyone’s needs are satisfied to the extent. Think of it as a giant calculating agent that totals up the score.

That’s why the socialist, fascist, and statist will always fail. There is no way for them to make that instantaneous calculation.

I learned that in injineering skool. Using a slide rule, you could very quickly get answers to a few significant digits. Or, you could use the computers to get a very “precise” answer with lots of meaningless digits that you’d throw away anyway because of “insignificance”. More meaningless digits didn’t make the answer better than the fast one from the analog slide rule. Most injineers in my day preferred the slide rule because it was fast and it made you think about significant digits. I saw the change as computer became more available and those injineers would write down long strings of meaningless digits as the answer. In civil engineering we learned to compute the answer and multiply be ten or a hundred as a safety factor. (That’s why buildings don’t fall down.)

So how does a leader avoid his ignorance?

He puts systems in place that put the decisions as close to the action as possible. Think Nordstroms. Think IBM sales person. Think the small individual business owner.

Fast decisions, close to the action, with complete accountability.

You won’t see that in stogy big companies or the gooferment.


LIBERTY: A great victory for the Democratic Party and Big Gooferment!

Friday, May 18, 2007

http://apnews.myway.com/article/20070518/D8P6PHL80.html

Sen. Kennedy Defends Immigration Bill
May 18, 8:13 AM (ET)
By JULIE HIRSCHFELD DAVIS

 

***Begin Quote***

The bill, which conservatives immediately attacked as an “amnesty” program, would provide a pathway to citizenship for some 12 million immigrants now in the United States illegally. It also would mandate tougher border security and workplace enforcement and provide for a guest worker program.

***End Quote***

Of course, Senator kennedy would defend this nonsense. The Democrats win big. California, Arizona, Texas, and Florida become permanent “Democratic” states. And, the Republicans and hugely unpopular Administration will also hail it as a great victory.

For who?

Why the advocates for big government! That’s who, silly peon.

They’ll need more forms, more checkers, more government powers, of course.

Bottom line, this does nothing to end the incentives for immigrants and “citizens” to be on the dole. Business, citizen, and immigrant alike are feasting on the backs of fewer and fewer workers.

This doesn’t do anything but accelerate the careening out-of-control gooferment over the proverbial cliff. When we hit the canyon floor below, there’s going to be a lot of breakage.

What we need, is a President Ron Paul, to stop the trip.

Baring that, we need: an end to the dole for EVERYONE; honest money; separation of Gooferment form Education; open borders; end the war on drugs; and reduce the Gooferment to a much smaller Constitutional government again.

Until that happens, this deal will solve nothing but how to get more Democrats elected.

By the way, where does an illegal immigrant get the 5k$ to pay the “tax” to get a z visa?

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MONEY: Is online stock trading advisable? imho, no!

Friday, May 18, 2007

via Chris Pirillo President at Lockergnome and Owner, Lockergnome.com

*** begin quote ***

Dear Network: I received this letter from a reader. Thought I’d throw it out to you to help her with an answer…..

“Dear Chris,
My husband got me a fake Gucci bag for Mother’s Day, and I really appreciated the sentiment, but had a revelation. I’m tired of the knock-offs…I want to be able to afford the real thing sometimes. Do you have any advice for me about how to invest my money? (I earn $60K annually). How do I find an investment advisor? Is online stock trading advisable? Thanks for any advice you can send my way!”

Shirley S.
Seattle, Washington

*** end quote ***

Chris,

With all due respect, this is a train wreck. And, you’re in the middle. This person is going to be disappointed, unless she’s wildly lucky to pick the next Microsoft / Google / Berkshire Hathaway, and subsequently be mad at you for bum advice. The market is a rigged game, and online trading is a fast path to the poor house.

Earning 60k per year, the person probably can’t (shouldn’t) even get a trading account because of “suitability rules”. There’s a reason why traders in big firms get paid lots of money and for an amateur to think they can compete is absurd. I’d suggest that they shelve this idea as a path to wealth.

If the writer wants to be truly wealthy, they need to give value to others in a way that is unique to them. It could be buying real estate and renting it. She will have to have a laser like focus on value and positive cash flow. Perhaps she can own her own side business. Maybe she can provide a service.

At 60k per year, I’d urge her to put her discretionary income into a tax deferred savings plan like a RothIRA in Vanguard Mutual Funds, and seek to increase her earning power. In thirty years, she may not be buying Gucci bags, but she won’t be eating dog food either.

I believe that the model for success NOW is: (1) ruthless financial discipline to capture part of your earnings while making every dollar work hard; (2) seek a white collar job; (3) have a blue collar skill; and (4) create one, or hopefully more, profitable web based businesses.

Then, she might become truly wealthy. If she has a husband who tried to make her happy, then she’s already blessed. Part of being wealthy is not having more “stuff”. It’s valuing what the Universe has given you. It’s not about having what you want; it’s about wanting what you have.

imho

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