Small Business

Who is our customer? Let's look at Drucker's second question.

Who is our customer? Let's look at Drucker's second question.

The second of Peter F. Drucker's five most important questions is "Who is our customer?" Like all of his questions, it is deceptively simple. The most common wrong answer, given by default, is "the people in the decision room."read more
Culture eats strategy for what?

Culture eats strategy for what?

Does culture eat strategy for lunch? Not really. But will a misaligned culture eat up your strategic efforts? Probably. Does it make sense to pay careful attention to an organization's culture and not just its business strategy? Absolutely!read more
What business are you in?

What business are you in?

What business are you in? I have found this question poses a challenge in almost every engagement, surprising participants. It wakes people up as they realize that they cannot answer or cannot agree on the answer. "If we cannot agree on who we are or what business we are in, how is anyone on the outside going to understand or guess right?"read more
Are you in good company?

Are you in good company?

Whether music or luxury goods, it’s crucial to be in good company or the company you are hoping to attract. Your product will be perceived only as good as the company it keeps, for better or worse.read more
Tronvig Group Brand Pyramid

Tronvig Group Brand Pyramid

We are developing a Brand Pyramid download that will walk you through the process and pose the questions for your organization, your company or your product. It will walk through how you can use these questions to expose strategic weaknesses and fix them.read more
The Beef Brand

The Beef Brand

Beef has come to be interpreted not just as meat from a cow but rather as the more generic and simplified meat; "If he does not eat beef, he must be a vegetarian." These two brands are differentiated enough and simple enough to make it easy to move between them, A to B. Where does your brand fall on this scheme?read more
The Apple You Eat

The Apple You Eat

Reason indicates that an apple and a sliced apple are equally good, but if examined through the lens of which version of an apple has greater appeal to a specific consumer group, then they are actually very different.read more
What is the downside of free?

What is the downside of free?

If you are a free institution you have both a blessing and a curse. The blessing part is easy to understand—less barrier to entry. The benefits are many. Let’s look though at the curse.read more
If you satisfy your customers you fail.

If you satisfy your customers you fail.

If you satisfy your customers you fail, because in order to succeed you must deeply satisfy the customer for whom your product is most naturally suited.read more
Visual Brand and 360 Brand: What's the difference?

Visual Brand and 360 Brand: What's the difference?

What is the difference between a visual brand and a true 360 brand? How do you get your organization to think beyond just the visual brand?read more
Bigger is better ... right?

Bigger is better ... right?

Hiring a big and flashy agency may seem "safe." But think about what they stand to gain by working with an organization of your size and budget. You may find that you're actually sacrificing the responsiveness, energy and focus on quality of smaller firms for the false sense of security that comes from going big.read more
Branding and Sales: a Bank Brand Story

Branding and Sales: a Bank Brand Story

What happens when you attempt to take over a brand space that is already occupied by a strong competitor?read more
Om Marketing (Yoga and Marketing)

Om Marketing (Yoga and Marketing)

Yoga is about controlling your mind. Marketing is about trying to control other's minds. End of story, right? Not exactly.read more
"Competitors are stealing my ideas."

"Competitors are stealing my ideas."

"All strategies aimed at exploiting an innovation, must achieve leadership within a given environment. Otherwise, they will simply create an opportunity for the competition."read more
Find the Pain: Business-to-Business Marketing

Find the Pain: Business-to-Business Marketing

Pain, fear, anxiety … these are strong emotions that drive behavior. This is true of life. Life is also, it turns out, the very stuff of marketing, even that most rarified and peculiar kind—business-to-business marketing.read more
The Difference Between Sales and Marketing

The Difference Between Sales and Marketing

Sales has the power to change conditions, to transform a situation through the skills of the sales person. Marketing however, generally does not possess such transformative power. Marketing needs to work with conditions as they are.read more
You need a target: What makes a marketing plan strategic?

You need a target: What makes a marketing plan strategic?

Finding out what you need to know in order to have a proper marketing strategy is not easy or cheap, but I can pretty much guarantee that what's far more costly is executing a marketing plan without a strategy to guide it.read more
Goals & Goats (How do you set strategic SMART goals?)

Goals & Goats (How do you set strategic SMART goals?)

Strategy is born from deep inspection of the question Why? Why is this goal important? If I cannot get to a good answer to why this goal makes sense in the context of my strategic vision, then the goal is suspect (or the strategy is suspect).read more
Your Brand Idea: Who but Horton can hear it?

Your Brand Idea: Who but Horton can hear it?

If your Brand Idea is succinct, meaningful and consistently and coherently expressed, it will be able to break free. It will be hearable outside of your brand bubble, outside of Whoville.read more
What is marketing strategy?

What is marketing strategy?

Marketing strategy allows you to use pathways and footholds that apply your limited marketing budget more effectively (everyone's marketing budget is limited). Marketing strategy facilitates your ability to apply marketing money to the correct half of the Wanamaker equation—the half you are not wasting on audiences who do not value your message.read more
When FedEx Slew the Giant: Sell Value Not Price

When FedEx Slew the Giant: Sell Value Not Price

When you think overnight courier, what comes to mind? I'm guessing FedEx is probably at the top of the list. This was not always the case. Let me take you back to the moment when a budding company called Federal Express slew the Goliath of its industry—Emery. Let's take a look at what happened and what you should learn from Emery's horrible death.read more
Marketing is Not Optional

Marketing is Not Optional

"There are only two things in a business that make money – innovation and marketing, everything else is cost." —Peter Druckerread more
Local Brand Positioning: ICI French Country Kitchen

Local Brand Positioning: ICI French Country Kitchen

Tronvig Group developed the brand strategy, the new brand, as well as brand applications such as menus, signage, and a new website for this local Brooklyn farm-to-table restaurant and event space. ICI French Country Kitchen, Est. Brooklyn 2004 is located between the Ft. Greene and Clinton Hill neighborhoods in Brooklyn and is within walking distance from our new office.read more
This piggy did no time sheet.

This piggy did no time sheet.

We are certainly not the first organization to struggle with getting everyone to fill in their time sheets. We've tried a variety of methods. We have made it really easy with software. We have tried asking nicely, telling regularly, assigning a person to go check and cajole each and every day. Through all this somehow consistent compliance has always eluded us. Enter the piggies.read more
The Ideal Client

The Ideal Client

We want to make the world better, and for us the way we can do that most effectively is through our clients. So it is important that we choose our clients well. These are the ten questions we currently ask ourselves when we consider if a potential client is likely to be the ideal client for us.read more
Customer Personas: What Sally Can Show You

Customer Personas: What Sally Can Show You

A persona is a kind of mental model—an imaginary person with a name, history and story who has a way of doing things. A persona should have enough psychological detail to allow you to conveniently step over to the persona's view, and see your products and services from her perspective.read more
Your Name is Your Biggest Brand Asset

Your Name is Your Biggest Brand Asset

Is it better to have a unique name like Kinko's or a more descriptive one like Staples? Is it better to have a name that's actually a person's name like Lowe's or something that really clues you in to the core business promise is such as Home Depot? International Business Machines or just a feel good symbol like Apple? There is danger and reward everywhere.read more
Chaffetz Lindsey Brand Refresh

Chaffetz Lindsey Brand Refresh

Having grown to more than 20 persons the basic brand message needed to be put in the context of the firm they were becoming.read more
Home Grown Books

Home Grown Books

Home Grown Books has created a wonderful series of early readers that don't insult the intelligence of kids as they are just starting to learn to read.read more
Website Copywriting: The Good, the Bad, the Ugly, and the Rewarding

Website Copywriting: The Good, the Bad, the Ugly, and the Rewarding

If you are thinking about creating a new website for your company, or revamping the one that served you well five years ago, but just isn’t quite up to snuff anymore, then this is information that could help you launch (or re-launch) a website that truly addresses your most critical business development needs.read more
What a Website Wants

What a Website Wants

During the first 15 to 30 seconds after I arrive on a website, I need to know that I have arrived at the right place.read more
The Two-Week Vacation

The Two-Week Vacation

In my working career, I have taken many types of vacations. They have ranged in duration from a rather luxurious 6 weeks to nothing at all, and experience has shown that a contiguous period of at least two weeks is the most valuable.read more
Apparent Failure Focuses the Mind

Apparent Failure Focuses the Mind

Probably the two most valuable things that have happened to me as a business person were: 1) Being laid off from a corporate job and having to start a business on my own, forcing the question of how to survive and support a family without a regular salary, benefits, or anything to rely on but myself. 2) My former business partner's choice to walk off with all our clients, leaving me with the company debt and virtually no business.read more
The $5,000 Website

The $5,000 Website

There is no such thing as a branded $5,000 website. There certainly exist many people who will design and build a business or even a nonprofit website for $5,000 or even less for that matter, but in doing this, they are inevitably leaving aside much of the essential stuff that makes a website effective.read more
Addressing Objections: Web Conversion

Addressing Objections: Web Conversion

Objections are always there. Dealing with them is basic to the sales process.read more
Serendipity’s Value in Business

Serendipity’s Value in Business

In my experience, making good use of serendipity is a combination of things: actively setting up opportunities, a willingness to go with the flow of events, the ability to see the thing that arises by chance, and finally, being prepared to seize the opportunity—prepared both in the sense of being open to the possibility and ready to take advantage of it.read more
Invisible Consequences: How Branding Impacts B2B Sales

Invisible Consequences: How Branding Impacts B2B Sales

How do you get new clients? If you sell B2B, the short answer is probably “relationships.” Almost.read more
Real Estate Retouching

Real Estate Retouching

Most of the original photography work that we do involves photo retouching of some kind. In real estate marketing, it is important to accurately preview the experience of actually seeing the property that is being sold.read more
37 Beekman Place

37 Beekman Place

37 Beekman Place was a real estate marketing project involving photography, collateral and a website that was able to successfully sell this unique property.read more