Three words from Seth Godin about email

Seth Godin speaks to Google – a wonderful talk that’s well worth an hour of your time. Most interesting story: creation of Hallmark collectible ornaments (about halfway through), with followup marketing by email. Takeaway: the most effective email campaigns are

  1. Anticipated
  2. Personal
  3. Relevant

The “email blast” approach has never worked, will never work, and will likely land you in hot water. Take the time to do it right.

That Software Guy works with MailChimp on email promotions. Check out their resource library to see the depth of their expertise. Reasonable prices for small businesses too.

Gas Tax, please

Dr. Greg Mankiw calls it “The Pigou Club” (after economist Arthur Pigou, who advocated using taxes as a way to correct for negative externalities).

That Software Guy calls it the “fund the war and the follow up costs, including veterans benefits, instead of screwing our warriors and giving our kids the bill” club.

This Memorial Day can I get an amen from an office-seeker who’d like to talk about the duties of citizenship?  Didn’t think so.

RIP J.R. Simplot – from chips to chips

J.R. Simplot passed away today.   A real Horatio Alger story – started in business at 14.

In 1923, he left home with four $20 gold coins and paid $1 a day for room and board at Declo’s only hotel. As a shrewd young businessman, Simplot bought interest-bearing scrip paid to teachers who also were boarding there for 50 cents on the dollar.

Question: is there anything you can buy today for fifty cents on the dollar?    His story comes wonderfully full circle:

n 1980, at age 71, Simplot took a gamble on the next generation of businessmen, giving Ward and Joe Parkinson $1 million for 40 percent of what would become computer chip maker Micron Technology Inc. Over the years, he pumped in $20 million more to help Micron build its first manufacturing plant and to stay afloat. Micron went on to become a major producer of DRAM memory chips, which are used to store information in personal computers.

Question: if you can’t run your own business, can you take an ownership stake in someone else?  Dreams need funding today.