Posted by: brandextenders | February 1, 2010

What’s it all about Alfie?

I had lunch last week with a friend who I worked with for about a year. He’s in sales and has done very well over the years garnering some big accounts and working his way into companies that have given him a nice income. Like most everyone I know though, he too is faltering in this economy; is having to work harder just to keep up much less get ahead. He told me late last year he realized he needed to “reinvent” himself, a term I’ve heard used often lately, but one which rings hollow with most people. When Chad sets his mind on something though, he’ll make it happen and so he began to look into what reinventing himself could be. What he found is the world of social networking is the new way to network. I remember going to Chamber of Commerce events, referral groups and parties to hand out business cards, give my 30-second elevator pitch and hope at the end of the day I could generate some business; at least enough to pay for more business cards so I could keep up the cycle. The Internet though has changed our world and it will never be the same again.
I am still learning about social networking and what it means. I’m set up on Linkedin, Plaxo, Twitter and facebook and am just beginning to figure out how to use those tools to generate business. Posting a comment on a friend’s wall is probably not going to bring customers flooding into my life. I have used Linkedin to find people I’m hoping to meet and sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. I think social networking might be the new way to close the gap in the “six degrees of separation” theory; that we can reach anyone in the world through finding the right six people.
I love to write so I’m going to give this blogging and social networking thing a try. I think my friend is onto something and if it works then I’ll hopefully be ahead of the game and ahead of the economy. Business is still built on relationships, but now they don’t necessarily have to be face-to-face relationships. The title of this blog reflects my questions about how all of this will work in the new world we live in and as my friend reinvents himself, so too will I. I’ve come up with the term “brand extenders” for what I do since I work with companies to help solve their challenges of extending their brand through a variety of marketing venues. Be it promotional products, direct mail, point-of-purchase, premiums, incentives, reward and recognition, trade shows or other forms of marketing, I have many success stories I can share with clients of how other similar companies have found ways to extend their brand.

If you have marketing challenges, chances are I have some BIG ideas that can help.
Let me know what you think and how social networking is helping…or possibly hurting your life.
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