Roy's Blog: February 2012

February 27, 2012

6 mind-blowing lessons from The Grateful Dead


Invaluable things you can do to BE Cherished by your Fans

1. Mix it up. Constantly innovate. Give your Fans a different look (value packages, promotions, events, fun) as often as you can. The Dead decided what songs to play when they began each concert - songs “on the run”. Risky? Yes. Original? Yes. Did their Fans love them for it? YES!

2. Enable your customers to fulfill themselves. Do what THEY want. The key here is the “Serving” mentality. Find out what they want and desire and take them there. The Dead created a bubble for their Fans and allowed them to reach emotional highs.

3. Focus on the experience not the product. The Dead did not try to sell records. They wanted to create mind-blowing experiences for their Fans. And guess what? (They sold lots of records).

4. Save the best deals for your best customers. Using Special Promotional Deals to entice people away from their supplier is a fool’s game in any event. What makes you think that if someone takes your Special Offer they won’t leave you in a heartbeat if someone else gives them one as well? You can’t grow your business by catering to the “promiscuous” crowd of constant switchers. Furthermore, what will your loyal customers say when they find out that you are not offering the special deal to them? (I can see their taillights already). The Dead ALWAYS saved the best ticket prices, seats and deals for their Fans. The result? The most successful touring band in history.

5. Do the opposite of what your competitors are doing. Observe ‘em and do a 180. You can’t stand-out if you copy. The Dead allowed their Fans to record their music in concert. No other band did. The 180 strategy created uniqueness and remark-ability that made them unforgettable.

6. Communicate with your Fans incessantly. AND figure out how to make it easier for them to communicate with one another. The Dead were fanatics when it came to having conversations with their Fans before Social Media arrived. Their Fans responded by not only attending concerts and other Dead Events, but also by talking up The Dead to their friends. The Dead virus spread…

You can learn a great deal about business from the most interesting and surprising sources.

Check out The Dead.

Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 2.27.12 at 08:10 am by Roy Osing
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February 23, 2012

ONLY is a journey


I am working with a client at the moment who has incredibly high expectations when it comes to building their ONLY Statement.

Not that there is anything wrong with setting the bar high. But The ONLY Statement is a journey. And a journey is all about driving a stake in the ground and getting started. If you wait to get it perfect you’ll never get started. You won’t ship it.

You will never get it done.

I tell people to work hard to get their ONLY as crisp and accurate as possible. Then start executing. Test your work with customers and employees. Is it relevant? Is it true?

Adjust it if you have to and keep on going.

A 60% ONLY is better than trying to squeeze the last 20% of perfection out of your work and not doing anything. Perfect doesn’t exist. Get over it.

ONLY work must be shipped. Your uniqueness must get tested and be experienced by your fans. Get it just about right and do it. Learn and adjust if you have to.

It’s ok to NOT get it right the first time.


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 2.23.12 at 09:22 am by Roy Osing
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February 22, 2012

Guest Blog - Jim Francis: In Good Times and Bad


Welcome to Jim Francis my Guest Blogger this week. Jim is the founder of Wavemaker Consulting, a management and educational consulting firm specializing in enhancing individual, team and organizational performance. His new book, How Not to Suck at Public Speaking reflects Jim’s passion for helping others become more effective communicators featuring 50 ways to leave your fears behind and become a great presenter.

To be productive, there are only two things you can do in business:

1-add value

2-save costs

Now then - which are you doing right now?

The above words of wisdom were sent to me by a good friend and X boss. While I love the simplicity and see no need to mess with them, I would like to suggest there is something to be said for the order in which they are presented, especially given the times.

While all for running a tight ship, I am more than a little concerned for those companies focusing first and foremost on cutting costs, but giving little or no thought to adding value.

Particularly disconcerting is the all to common practice of cutting programs aimed at improving the skills and knowledge of long standing employees, or worse yet cutting the people themselves.

I suspect most, if not all of these these companies are going to find themselves behind the eight ball when the markets turns, if not before. And, when it comes to time to staff back up, the cost of regaining, or retraining the skills and knowledge lost may be more than many can bare.

So if your response to the question posed above is simply “I’m cutting costs” and you haven’t already developed and implemented a plan for adding value, you might want to rethink your approach.

What is the best, and likely the least expensive way to add value, regardless of the times?

We would suggest the answer lies in retaining and further developing your best people so your company can deliver a superior customer experience that differentiates you from your competitors, both today and in the future - a logical strategy for both good times and bad!——— Jim Francis

Thanks Jim, Roy
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  • Posted 2.22.12 at 08:44 am by Roy Osing
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February 20, 2012

10 questions leaders should ask themselves

To build an organization that stand-out from others, leaders need to start asking DiFFERENT questions.

It’s NOT:

1. How do we compare to the competition, BUT… How are we different? What about us makes us stand-out from the crowd?

2. Do we have products with feature-sets like the market leader, BUT… What is different about our offerings that will get us noticed?

3. How will it appeal to the masses, BUT… How will it be relevant to the individual customer set we are trying to take care of?

4. What will make us #1 in the markets we serve, BUT… What will it make us The ONLY One in the markets we serve?

5. What are we doing to match best in class, BUT… What are we doing to go the opposite way?


6. What new technology do we plan to introduce, BUT… What are we doing to leverage the latest technology available to create unique VALUE for our customers?

7. What do we have to do to match the prices of our competitors, BUT… What value do we have to add to our basic offering to justify premium prices in the market?

8. What marketing programs can we introduce to attract new customers, BUT… How can we show our loyal fans we care for them and convince them to refer us to others?

9. How many products did we sell last quarter, BUT… What have we done to deepen the relationships we have with our customers?

10. How do we fix the mistakes we made when responding to our customer’s demand, BUT… How can we ‘Fix it Fast’ AND blow the customer away by doing something for them they don’t expect?

Leaders… write these questions down. Commit them to memory. Rehearse them. Ask them often.


Check out my BE DiFFERENT or be dead Book Series

  • Posted 2.20.12 at 08:08 am by Roy Osing
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