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Karen Leland
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Entries by Karen Leland

Are You Sick and Tired of Counting Characters?

(1) Comments | Posted April 30, 2013 | 9:44 AM

Lately I've been realizing that small and insignificant, but necessary, items eat up a significant portion of my worktime. For example, counting the number of characters or words I'm using when composing something. Character limits are all the rage these days. For example:

• Pinterest gives you 500 characters for...

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Who Really Owns Your Brand?

(0) Comments | Posted December 5, 2012 | 5:56 PM

This past Thanksgiving weekend, my husband, Jon, and I were driving back from visiting family in Columbia, Missouri, to St. Louis airport, when we got a hankering for barbeque.

Owing to the late hour -- and the thought of airplane food -- we agreed eating on the road was...

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Build Brand Awareness With a Survey

(0) Comments | Posted September 20, 2012 | 7:00 PM

In today's crowded media landscape, businesses are continually on the lookout for ways to stand apart from their competitors. Enter surveys, a cost-effective method to promote brand awareness. A survey worthy of media attention is more than just a few questions randomly asked. Instead, it's a carefully crafted instrument that,...

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Inspiration Breathes Life Into Branding

(0) Comments | Posted September 5, 2012 | 9:22 AM

One of the first things I do when I start working with new clients on their personal or business brand is to ask them to consider what mood or energy they consciously strive to bring to anything they do. In other words:

What is it that you can be counted...

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'Ruby Sparks' Reminded Me That Persuasion Marketing Sucks

(0) Comments | Posted August 20, 2012 | 3:10 PM

"Yup, instead of changing himself, he's going to try and change her." That's what my friend Randy turned to me and said during a pivotal plot point in the new film "Ruby Sparks".

Now I don't want to be a spoiler and give the big reveal away,...

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Email Headlines With Emotional Value

(0) Comments | Posted August 8, 2012 | 5:27 PM

Anyone who has ever sweated over the phrasing of an email subject line has probably longed for a magical marketing solution that would tell them which combination of words would shoot their open rate through the roof. Well the wait is over.

The Advanced Marketing Institute offers a no-cost...

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Why Your Personal Brand Wants You to Take Time Off

(1) Comments | Posted July 31, 2012 | 11:34 AM

I recently returned from a conference that was wall to wall with smart, successful, type A movers and shakers from the worlds of government, academia, business, entertainment, the arts, sciences, publishing and social profit.

Being around all those high-powered brains made me mindful about how our personal brands --...

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New Study Shows We Are Overworked and Overwhelmed

(16) Comments | Posted May 30, 2012 | 5:47 PM

Any small businessperson who currently swims in the swirling mass of a high-pressure workplace doesn't need another study to tell him or her that they have reached their limit. However, just in case your overflowing email inbox and chaotic to-do list weren't proof enough, according to a national study released...

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The Challenge of Hiring Linksters

(4) Comments | Posted May 16, 2012 | 6:04 PM

Picture this: An 85-year-old company founder startled by the scantily clad intern sitting on his desk texting her mom or an angry parent calling to ask why her son's schedule was changed, impacting the family's summer vacation.

Born after 1995 (age 17 and younger), Linksters, also...

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Could Your Small Business Benefit From a Strategic Off-Site This Spring?

(1) Comments | Posted May 7, 2012 | 5:51 PM

It's spring! Flowers are in bloom, cropped pants are being taken off their dusty shelves and small business owners, grumpy from the cold winter months, are looking forward to the future.

What better time to take your staff away for a day or two of deep discussion, meaningful deliberation...

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Enthusiasm and Entrepreneurship in Vietnam

(2) Comments | Posted April 23, 2012 | 3:05 PM

I'm sitting in the great hall of the Reunification Palace, the landmark building in former Saigon where the war officially ended when the North Vietnamese crashed through its gates declaring victory.

Our tour guide -- a short, slight-of-build, 20-something Vietnamese man -- is explaining with great passion the history...

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Are You a Multiplier or a Diminisher?

(4) Comments | Posted April 13, 2012 | 11:00 AM

Drawing on interviews with more than 150 executives and on her own experience as the former vice president of Oracle University, Liz Wiseman, author of the book Multipliers: How the Best Leaders Make Everyone Smarter, argues that leaders are either Multipliers or Diminishers:

We've all had experience...
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Reporter Services Can Be Key To Media Coverage

(1) Comments | Posted April 2, 2012 | 10:38 AM

In a recent survey, the Society of New Communications Research, explored how media and journalism are evolving. In the study, journalists reported using more social media in their reporting including:

  • 78% of the journalists surveyed said they use company websites in their reporting
  • 75% use Facebook
  • ...
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10 Pinterest Tips For Small Business Pinners

(7) Comments | Posted March 23, 2012 | 10:11 AM

As a small business marketing consultant, it's my job to stay on top of the latest and greatest in the world of would-be life-altering Internet bells and whistles. Ironically, however, the last thing I wanted to do was learn yet another social media tool -- that promised to transform my...

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eBooks: The New Darlings of Small-Business Branding

(2) Comments | Posted December 2, 2011 | 12:45 PM

In the world of small business marketing, it sometimes seems like there is a never-ending tension between the "what's hot now" social media to do and the actual way to execute for maximum business benefit. Consider for example all the small businesses that have a Twitter account because they know...

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Conferences: A Time To Work 'On' Your Small Business, Not 'In' It

(2) Comments | Posted November 4, 2011 | 1:58 PM

I make a point of attending at least two professional conferences every year. Despite my last-minute qualms before getting on the plane, I'm always happy -- post-conference. My mind-chatter pre-conference goes a little something like this:

"How can I afford to take this time off when I've got so much...

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No IT Staff? Use The Apple Genius Bar

(2) Comments | Posted October 20, 2011 | 9:37 AM

Most small businesses I know can't afford to have a full-time computer person on hand, so they often utilize outside resources such as independent consultants for their technology needs. For Mac users, the Genius Bar, available on site at stores around the world, often serves the function of troubleshooter for...

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How to Promote Your Small Business Blog

(6) Comments | Posted October 13, 2011 | 1:40 PM

"If you write it, they will come." Well at least that's what all those small businesses that start a blog in the hope of driving hoards of potential customers to their site anticipate will happen.

While writing a regular blog is a great way to establish yourself as an expert...

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Bust Your Bad Small Business Eating Habits

(1) Comments | Posted October 6, 2011 | 9:58 AM

Are you the type who walks by a Dunkin' Donuts shop without so much as a sideways glance -- but find yourself in the Monday morning meeting intensely reaching for a sugar-glazed cruller (pastry)?

Most of the small business owners I know are so busy running the shop, selling the...

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Use SlideShare To Tell Your Small Business Story

(2) Comments | Posted September 30, 2011 | 12:35 PM

I recently gave a talk to a group of new authors on how to promote and market their books. Instead of taking the time and expense of providing handouts (not to mention all the trees saved), I decided to create a SlideShare presentation and offer it, post-conference, to...

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