July 13th 2009
Over the years, sports teams have been successful with offering fans an all-you-can-eat ticket package. Now, Universal Studios is offering an all-you-can-eat pass and it’s very reasonably priced for adults and kids (two different price levels).
Whether you stop at a concessions booth or eat at a theme park restaurant, it can be pretty expensive for individuals, couples and especially families and groups. Universal Studio’s all-you-can-eat pass is a great strategy in today’s economy, and hopefully one that will stick long after the economy rebounds. (more…)
April 13th 2009
I read an article in the LA times this weekend – Recession Brought Baseball Back Where It Should Be. The story shares how the Arizona Diamondbacks sell tickets for $5, hot dogs for $1.50, sodas for $1.50, which means a family of four can enjoy a Diamondbacks game, hot and drinks for only $32.
The article shared that according to Team Marketing Report, the cost of four tickets at the average price, four hot dogs, four sodas, two beers, two caps and parking comes to (more…)
December 15th 2008
Many say this is the year social media broke into the mainstream, and I was one of many who jumped on board with LinkedIn the first of this year, then Plaxo a short time later, Facebook some months later, and most recently Twitter, which is basically a micro-blog limited to 140 characters per post.
Both LinkedIn and Plaxo are professional social networks, while Facebook is a more traditional social medium of over 120 million members. Although many say Twitter is for entertaining, engaging or (more…)
November 3rd 2008
Technology amazes me every day.
I’m new to social networking. I joined my first online business network – LinkedIn – in January, and some months later Plaxo. Most recently, I joined Facebook and I’ve been impressed by many of the innovative “applications” created by the three social networks.
Innovative technology is everywhere, and as a business traveler, I’ve noticed the airlines introducing numerous innovative technology advancements this year to assist with speeding up check-in procedures and allowing travelers to be more efficient. (more…)
October 20th 2008
Seth Godin’s latest book, Tribes, is another great read and I recently came across a free resource Seth helped facilitate – The Tribes Casebook – a complimentary eBook in PDF format you can download and read.
September 1st 2008
I often cheer for the underdog and I enjoy seeing athletes celebrate an upset win.
It’s difficult to see anyone lose, but there’s something special about seeing an athlete or individual succeed when very few people believe they have a chance.
It’s truly a special moment when athletes come together as a team to score an upset win that no one believed could ever happen. Appalachian State defeating Michigan in football last fall was one of those moments. (more…)
July 28th 2008
I was introduced to social networking by a number of friends and associates who for the first time this year convinced me it would be well worth my investment of time to become involved in online social networking.
It took some convincing but I finally made the investment, first on LinkedIn and Plaxo, and most recently Facebook and MySpace.
I’ve had great experiences on LinkedIn and have enjoyed the interaction with colleagues and opportunities to connect and re-connect with people, the opportunities to connect people, and a pleasant surprise has been the numerous opportunities I’ve had to help people with various requests.
June 30th 2008
I’ve often thought it would be pretty neat to pick the hotel room our family wanted to stay in when we go on vacations.
We get to the hotel room, check in on a kiosk, and similar to what airlines now offer with a seating map, we could pull up an available room map for the hotel.
I know, what a dreamer, right? (more…)
October 1st 2007
I recently called to pay our Internet bill and received a very pleasant and unexpected surprise.
The individual who took my payment communicated how she noticed on our account that we’ve been a customer for many years and asked if she could provide us with 50 percent off our next three months. (more…)
September 3rd 2007
We’ve all heard during our lifetime how important preparation is to success. Benjamin Franklin once said, “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.”
I watched a special feature on Peyton Manning, and although I’ve always been impressed with Peyton Manning the person as much as Peyton Manning the football player, I gained another level of respect for Peyton’s well documented meticulous preparation. (more…)
June 26th 2007
Customization has been a business buzz word for quite some time now, and even M&M’s has joined the customization craze.
Hershey has offered for quite some time the opportunity to customize the Hershey Kisses with a special message for most any occasion, and now M&M’s has joined the party with it’s custom printing on 22 different colored M&M’s.
Ron Goch, The Telios Group
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June 18th 2007
When I first read reports that L.L. Bean was getting into the amusement park business, I must admit I was more than slightly skeptical of the idea. However, I tried to remain slightly open minded until I read about the details of the strategy, which you can read here.
Once you read, though, you will see the strategy is well conceived and just may be a successful strategy for the highly successful mail-order retailer.
Ron Goch, The Telios Group
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May 23rd 2007
Thomas Edison was about as relentless as anyone.
It’s reported Edison had tried over 2,000 different experiments that failed before he finally got the light bulb to work. These days, who tries anything 20 times let alone 2,000? Are you kidding me? (more…)
April 10th 2007
While driving in Colorado, I came to a toll booth where Deanna greeted me with a smile, and I noticed just below “Deanna” on her name tag, it read: “4 years of dedicated service,” and I thought to myself, “What a great way to recognize employees for their dedication and service.”
I know many ushers who have served on arena staff’s for years – and some a few decades – who would very much appreciate a name tag with the number of years they have dedicated to an arena, a sports team, and the thousands of fans over the years. (more…)
March 29th 2007
So you believe your team or athletics department offers the very best entertainment and fan experience in town? How do you know?
One great way to find out is be a fan for one of your games and determine for yourself whether or not your experience is the very best. Better yet, be a fan at not only one of your events, but be a fan at each of your competitor’s events, as well as your own and do your best to be objective in your event evaluations across the board. (more…)
February 27th 2007
I recently read the guiding principles of a company and thought they were well written and principles any company would be proud to have as their guiding principles. Here they are:
Honesty and integrity first.
Promote a positive attitude.
Move fast, never procrastinate. (more…)
February 26th 2007
While reading a business book this past weekend, I came across 10 things Sam Walton – founder of Wal-Mart, the largest and most profitable company in the world – believed a business needed to do to be successful. Here they are: (more…)
February 15th 2007
I was reading the USA Today, as I do every morning, except I picked up the actual paper versus reading online.
I came across a Hertz advertisement featuring 20 percent off a weekend economy-premium rental and 30 percent off a weekend prestige rental.
The offers are attractive, but being the best business practice geek that I am, what I found most interesting was the fact Hertz included promotional codes (PC) for each offer in the ad. (more…)
February 2nd 2007
According to Forbes, the Super Bowl is the most valuable brand. When I read the story and how Forbes calculated the brand value, it was clear how the Super Bowl came out on top.
I was surprised to see, however, the Rose Bowl ranked No. 5, the Kentucky Derby No. 8 and the NBA Finals ranked No. 10. Many friends have shared with me their Kentucky Derby experiences and the two-minute race must really be something to be ranked ahead of the World Series and NBA Finals. (more…)
February 1st 2007
January 18th 2007
Over the holidays, our family went to a sports restaurant for lunch while out enjoying a fun day together.
We had a great lunch and a few good laughs, before deciding to head into the game room for some more fun. However, it had been quite some time since we last heard from our waitress and she was no where in sight to pay our bill. (more…)
January 4th 2007
I read a short story by Stephen Covey that illustrates the importance of not only working hard, but working smart.
Here’s Mr. Covey’s short and impacting illustration:
“Once upon a time, a very strong woodcutter asked for a job in a timber merchant, and he got it. The pay was really good and so were the work conditions. For that reason, the woodcutter was determined to do his best.
His boss gave him an axe and showed him the area where he was supposed to work.
“The first day, the woodcutter brought 18 trees. ‘Congratulations,’ the boss said. ‘Go on that way!’ Very motivated by the bosses’ words, the woodcutter tried harder the next day, but he only could bring 15 trees.
“The third day he tried even harder, but he only could bring 10 trees. Day after day, he was bringing less and less trees.
“‘I must be losing my strength,’ the woodcutter thought. He went to the boss and apologized, saying that he could not understand what was going on.
“’When was the last time you sharpened your axe?’ the boss asked.
“’Sharpen? I had no time to sharpen my axe. I have been very busy trying to cut trees…’“
November 28th 2006
How many times have you, or someone you know, said “If I only could find time…” I know those words have rolled off my tongue on numerous occasions.
If I only could find time to exercise…if I only could find time to spend with my family… The list goes on and on with all the things I’m sure I’ve said over the years.
Instead of saying, “I wish I could find time,” I now try and say, “I need to make time” this week to…and I fill in the blank with all the things I want to do each week. I schedule the time with myself – making the time versus wishing I had more time – to accomplish and do those things I want to do.
We all have the same amount of time, and it’s up to us how we choose to spend or invest our time – one of our most precious gifts in life.
How will you choose to invest your time today?
November 14th 2006
One of my favorite sports growing up was football, and I enjoyed both playing and watching the sport.
I primarily played on defense, but also enjoyed playing offense and especially liked participating on the specials teams.
My coaches often told me that I needed to put myself “in a position to make a play.” As I recently watched a football game, I paid particular attention to the defensive backs and linebackers as they dropped back in their pass coverage, and just as they settled into their pass coverage areas, the quarterback attempted to complete a pass to a receiver.
The pass was deflected by a lineman, and the middle linebacker was in position to intercept the deflected pass. However, if the player wasn’t “in position to make the play,” he would have missed out on the interception and the pass likely would have simply fell to the ground.
In business, “being in position to make a play” is equally important. If we’re out of position, out of balance, or simply just not organized which places us out of position, we’re unable to take advantage of opportunities or maximize opportunities presented to us each day.
Quite simply, if we can place ourselves in a position to make a play each day, we’re going to experience greater success on a consistent basis.
November 13th 2006
The airlines have become more creative with generating revenue beyond ticket sales, and they should be applauded for their creativity and resourcefulness.
As a frequent business traveler, I prefer the airlines develop strategies to generate revenues beyond ticket sales versus simply increasing airfares.
One of the first moves airlines made a few years ago was advertisements on the tray liners. Some of the airlines then began offering headsets on flights for $2. Some people laugh and some complain about the charges, but I see many headsets sold on each flight and there’s no doubt the airlines are making a lot of money from people who choose not to bring their headsets on a flight.
The next revenue idea was pulled from the seat pocket on each plane when the airlines began carrying air-sickness bags with advertising on them. Again, some people laugh, but consider that one airline carrier is pulling in $10 million in annual revenue from the bag advertising and other similar initiatives.
There’s no doubt the airlines are laughing too!
In the latest story I read, the airline flight attendants became upset when they were asked to distribute coupons for a chain of ice cream stores. Again, I think this is a great idea and most passengers – especially ice cream lovers like myself – would appreciate the offer extended by the airlines.
The lesson airlines – and all of us – can learn from this latest move by airlines is to ensure proper communication with employees (especially those expected to distribute the coupons) prior to executing the promotion. The feedback, thoughts and ideas employees provide is priceless and will assist in creating a positive experience for all involved.
November 10th 2006
I recently stayed in a hotel that extended a customized touch-point that was very impressive.
The day I arrived, I received an envelope that was slid under my door. The general manager took the time to type my name on the envelope and also included a type-written letter that he personally signed.
The letter opened with welcoming me to the hotel and followed with “Our staff promises to make your stay with us like home away from home.”
Some other highlights included: “Sunny skies are forecast tomorrow with a high of 70 degrees,” and the manager then shared various events scheduled in the area, along with times and locations.
The letter closed with “Our Concierge, Cody, will be available tomorrow from 1 to 9:30 pm to answer any concerns you may have or other recommendations so that your visit is enchanting.” He followed with thanking me for choosing the hotel and “we hope you enjoy your time here with us.”
Included with the letter was a card with an inspiring quote, along with the sunrise and sunset times, and with the weather forecast. Well done.
October 24th 2006
I checked into a Doubletree recently and soon after receiving my key and directions to the elevator, the receptionist handed me an envelope with a warm chocolate chip cookie.
For those of you who have stayed at a Doubletree hotel, you know this experience first-hand. The cookies are thick, warm and the chocolate chips melt when you sink your teeth into them.
As I took my second bite into the cookie, I read the writing on the envelope which said: “Why a cookie? Simple. Cookies are warm, personal and inviting. Much like our hotels and the staff here that serves you. So, many years ago we decided to start giving our guests fresh-baked cookies at check-in, as a symbol of our unique kind of hospitality and commitment to comfort. In other words, we think cookies are the perfect way for us to say, “Welcome.”
I like it and think it’s a great way to say “Welcome.”
How do you and your business say “Welcome” to your clients or guests? Is it warm, personal and inviting like the Doubletree’s cookies?
October 23rd 2006
Whenever I’m traveling on business and I flag a cab at an airport, I’m usually pretty quick to roll my luggage to the back of the cab, flip the trunk open and place my bag in the trunk.
However, this cab driver beat me to it. He nabbed my bag, and quickly placed it in the trunk as I looked at him surprised that he beat me to the punch.
He just smiled.
I then went to get in the back seat and he was right there to close the door behind me. Not something I’m used to when I get in a city cab no matter where I travel, but I could tell this guy was different than most cab drivers.
When he sat down, he asked where I’d like to go, and then followed with the question “Business or pleasure sir?” I said, “Ah, business.” He said, “Great!” as he signed a blank cab receipt (saving me from asking for one when I paid) and handed it to me with a smile, “Here you go.”
I smiled back and said, “Thanks.”
He had the newspaper in the back seat, asked if I’d like to know the forecast for the next few days, and even asked if I’d like the air conditioning adjusted.
I couldn’t help but be impressed.
Now, the real test was about to come, though. You see usually when I’m in a cab; it doesn’t take long for me to respond to emails on my Blackberry, and I start to feel a bit nauseous from the cab driver jumping from lane-to-lane.
A few minutes passed, though, and nothing happened. This guy was as smooth as could be; almost as if he was trying to avoid bumps or any quick movements. He was actually a Blackberry friendly cab driver – a first for me.
That clinched the deal for me. This guy was tops on my list of cab drivers – great customer service and Blackberry friendly. It just doesn’t get any better than that!
October 19th 2006
Are you someone who takes notes? Whether you’re in a class, seminar, meeting with a client, or just want to remember something, do you take notes?
I’m a note taker. I’ve always been a note taker ever since I can remember. I tell people, “If I don’t write it down, I may not remember it.”
There are plenty of examples to validate that fact!
Michael Howe concluded in a 1970 study that students were seven times more likely to recall information one week after it was presented if the information had been recorded in their notes. Howe argued that “the activity of note writing per se makes a contribution to later retention…”
I don’t know about you, but I know I’m seven times more likely to remember something if I write it down.
August 16th 2006
A few of the national hotel chains have done a great job of quickly responding to the heightened security requirements at airports that have resulted from the alleged airline-bombing plot involving liquid explosives.
I’ve received a few email communications from hotels ensuring that they have taken measures to accommodate guest needs when they arrive on their hotel properties.
With passengers having to throw away liquid substances from their carry-on luggage, some of the hotels have taken steps to replenish nearly all forms of liquid and gel “basics” travelers have relinquished at airports across the nation.
This a great move by the hotels to respond to what could be a stressful situation for travelers and ease their concerns by providing these complimentary items to its guest at their hotels.
Here’s what one hotel email communication stated:
“We know you will be inconvenienced by these unexpected security changes, so we want to do whatever it takes to make your travel experiences less stressful.
Effective immediately, we are offering the following complimentary items:
Facial Skin Care Products
Hair Care Products
Contact Lens Solution
Nail Polish and Remover
Guests can also find a list of nearby pharmacies with their telephone numbers and hours of operation to refill prescriptions or other over the counter medications.”
Ron Goch, The Telios Group
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August 10th 2006
So many times in life we think about what we don’t have or wish we could have versus being thankful for what we have today.
We look for the big opportunity that’s down the road when in fact in may be right in front of us and we miss it because our focus is on the future versus enjoying today.
Napoleon Hill once said, “Your big opportunity may be right where you are now.”
Don’t look too far ahead, today may be your big opportunity.
Ron Goch, The Telios Group
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