Friday, April 18, 2008
Last night I received about 1500 messages in my spam folder and a couple dozen in my regular in box from email spam filters.
The number has reduced to a trickle. Maybe the spammers are asleep, and it will kick in again this afternoon.
Most of these messages were notices that an email was undeliverable, and apparently the spammer used fake email names@mydomain as the reply email. I wonder how many emails were actually sent out, because I only got the once that bounced. I would guess there were between 5,000 and 15,000 messages that made it into peoples email.
I have done scans on my computer to make sure there is nothing here that is involved, and it came up clean.
My apologies if you are getting spam garbage from my domain which is ScLoHo (dot) Net. It is not something I have control over, it is easy to spoof an email address.
Perhaps Bill Gates or the folks at Google can create a more secure system that prevents email spoofing.
Your comments and suggestions are welcomed
Thursday, April 17, 2008
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Local Rapper on his way to stardom.
This is one that I'm personally proud of. Family Friend "Cheezy" is in a national competition on the BET Network. Going by the name Moe Cheez, he will be in New York and on BET at 6pm Friday night. Click here for some of the local press coverage.
Cheez and my stepson Ian have been working on music ever since I first met them 8 years ago. Cheez has a heart of gold and last year started interning with one of my radio stations, WNHT, WILD 96.3. Good luck to Cheezy.
(BY THE WAY, I DO NOT ENDORSE THE LANGUAGE, BUT I APPRECIATE THE TALENT)
Next, I have this from my email:
This post was written by Ramsay of The Daily Mind.
“Be fluid. Treat each project differently. Be water, man. The best style is no style. Because styles can be figured out. And when you have no style they can’t figure you out.” - Jay-Z
Jay-Z is one of the most successful rappers in history. He has had more number one hits than I can count on my two hands. He has been CEO of two powerful music labels. And, most importantly, he is married to the hottest girl in the business! So what can Jay teach us about success and work ethic?
The answer: a lot.
Who is Jay-Z?
In case you have been living under a rock for the last 20 years I will quickly tell you who Jay-Z is and why he is worth studying. However, you don’t need to know who this man is to appreciate what he has done.
The Early Years
Jay-Z grew up in the projects in Booklyn, New York. He was abandoned by his father at a young age and got into selling drugs and skipping school. A renowned intellectual; his gifts were being used to create a massive drug business. However, he soon turned all that around when he established his own record label, Roc-A-Fella Records, and released his first album. It was a huge success - the first of many.
The name “Jay-Z” is a stage name; his real name being Shawn Corey Carter. There is a lot of speculation as to where this stage name comes from. Some people think it is because his mentor’s name was Jaz-O, others say it was because his childhood nick name was Jazzy and others say it is because the Brooklyn Subway runs from station J to station Z. Whatever the reason the name Jay-Z now stands for so much more than just a few good hip hop albums.
What Jay-Z can teach you about success and work ethic
Now that you know who he is we can look at some of his amazing life events, poetic rap quotes and pioneering innovation and extract some useful lessons on success and work ethic. Pay attention because this man is exceptional.
1. Give people what they want
“I dumbed down for my audience to double my dollars, they criticize me for it yet they all yell holla.” - Jay-Z
The rap game is, truthfully, a very snobby industry. If an underground rapper gets famous people call him a sellout. But, if he stays underground people say he hasn’t got skills because he hasn’t got a record deal.
This didn’t bother Jay.
He knew he had skills and he was confident in that. He didn’t create rap albums to prove anything to anyone else and as such was able to make moves that put in him in a very good financial position. His first album was poetic and deep but after realizing that he was alienating a large portion of listeners he “dumbed it down” to increase his fan base. He knew what people wanted and he gave it to them. The rap industry might have called him a sellout but the listeners bought his records. Soon he was a best seller and a powerful player in game - others were now going to the “sellout” for loans and advice.
If you want to be successful you need to know what the people want. Know your market. Know your niche. There is no point trying to sell music to deaf people or movies to the blind.
2. Take risks
“The Martha Stewart that’s far from Jewish, far from a Harvard student, just had the balls to do it.” - Jay-Z
Jay-Z started out as a drug dealer from the ghetto. He didn’t graduate secondary school. But, he knew he had something special inside and so he took big risks to better his position. The drug dealer soon set up his own record label (unheard of in those days) and turned himself into one of the most successful musicians in history. After 10 years of pumping out hit after hit he accepted a high powered role as the CEO of Def Jam Records. This is yet again an amazing feat - an uneducated man taking control of an international firm.
However, these are not the only risks that Jay has taken. He has an extremely wide variety of investments ranging from clothing lines to basketball teams. On the surface it looks like Jay has made a lot of risky investment decisions. But, is it more risky to diversify or more risky to put all your eggs in one basket? If Jay’s records stop selling he will still extract millions from his clothes, clubs, merchandise, signed musicians, sporting teams, etc.
If you want to be successful you need to take some risks. However, do like Jay did and invest wisely. If you risks that are not calculated and measured you will lose out badly.
3. Don’t give up
“Put me anywhere on God’s green earth, I’ll triple my worth.” - Jay-Z
Jay-Z didn’t have his first big hit until he was in his 30’s. Most musicians are done and dusted by that age but Jay backed himself and his team and he didn’t give up. It would have been easy for Jay to stay in the drug trade and make big money living a life of crime. However, he wanted something better for himself and he knew that with hard work and dedication he could get it.
Take a look at what Jay says about persistence:
“Sure I do, I tell you the difference between me and them
They tryin to get they ones, I’m tryin to get them M’s
One million, two million, three million, four
In just five years, forty million more
You are now lookin at the forty million boy
I’m rappin Def Jam ’til I’m the hundred million man.”
Jay-Z’s “never say die” attitude has taken him to places that other people will never reach because they give up too quickly. Successful people never give up, even when everything looks pretty gloomy. It doesn’t matter which successful person you look at, they have all faced adversities and they have all pushed through them.
4. Take care of the people around you
“I got mouths to feed til they put flowers on me.” - Jay-Z
It is important to take care of the people around you. If by some chance you do strike it rich you need to realize that you got there because of the kindness and efforts of a lot of people. No body got anywhere by themselves. To think so would be a mistake. Jay is well aware that he is who he is today because he had the moral and financial support from the friends, family and business partners in his life. To forget them would be a serious error.
If you take care of your business partners other people will perceive you as trustworthy and be more likely to engage your services. Furthermore, the people with whom you have already done business will be more likely to take care of your in return.
With this in mind I should take a second to thank my home-boy Alex for digging up all the quotes for this post!
Success is not about what you know, it is about who you know. But it’s no use if they know you for the wrong reasons.
5. Watch your mouth
“A wise man once told me don’t argue with fools, because people from a distance cant tell who is who.” - Jay-Z
Leading on from number four it is important to watch what you say. One of the first things my father ever taught me about business is that you should never say anything bad about anyone in the industry because sooner or later you will be known to be untrustworthy.
Jay-Z is very careful about who he disses in his rap songs. He has never bitten the hand that feeds him. His disses always go out to competitor rap artists and are used as a marketing method to make himself known in the media and music industry.
I myself would never say some of the things he has. However, you have to take note of how he has done it as every word was deliberate and intentional. None of it came as en emotional response - it was a business move. Let me illustrate:
For over five years Jay-Z had continuous beef with a fellow New York rapper called Nas. They were both fighting to become the best rapper in the city. Each artist took turns saying things about the other until the conflict became so popularized people thought there was going to be bloodshed.
Finally Jay-Z called a massive concert at Madison Square Gardens called “I Declare War”. People feared that it would trigger a new gangster war in New York City. The concert sold out and to the shock and awe of the people attending Jay walked out with rival rapper Nas and the two did a concert side-by-side. He declared peace instead.
Be careful what you say about people. It will have an effect.
6. Make your own destiny
“Gotta keep it peace like a buddhist…
Nobody gonna Wesley snipe me
It’s less than likely,
Let I breathe Jedi knight,
The more space I get the better I write,
(Oh) Never I write, but, if, ever I write,
I need the space to say whatever I like.” - Jay-Z
This quote is my favorite of all of Jay’s quotes and it might need a little explaining. Like many of his lyrics it is multi-layered and allows for many different interpretations.
Firstly, Jay says that he needs space and that no body or no circumstance will get in the way of that. He creates his own space and doesn’t let other people bring him down.
Secondly, Jay-Z is somewhat of a prodigy whose lyrics are composed on the spot and usually in the recording booth. It is well known that he never writes any lyrics down but instead commits it all to memory. In the quote Jay is playing on this fact saying that he never writes but if he did it would say exactly what he intended.
He is the author of his own destiny. Are you?
Some other inspiring Jay-Z facts
Jay-Z has said and done so many amazing things so I thought I would share a few as a conclusion to this post. I have selected some of the most inspiring for you to browse through. Hopefully something will stand out to you.
If you have any other I have missed be sure to leave a comment!
Facts about Jay
- Jay is worth a reported $182 million.
- Jay is married to singer Beyonce Knowles
- Jay had six consecutive albums reach number one
- Jay’s album the Blueprint 2 has sold over three million copies
- Jay is part owner of the basketball team the New Jersey Nets
- Jay takes equity in his business deals instead of endorsements and as such has built up massive wealth.
- It was Jay who signed Rihana, NE-YO and Mariah Carey all in one year to make Def Jam a fortune.
- Jay and Kanye West donated $1.3 million to Hurricane Katrina victims
- Jay sold his clothing company for $204 million in cash
This guest post has been written by The Daily Minder from the blog that makes the daily grind meaningful - The Daily Mind.
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
That led to a list by Kristina Frazier-Henry.
And here's a perspective written by Robert in New York on his Blog:
Bridging the 'Generation Gap'
Jack Benny once noted that, “age is strictly a case of mind over matter. If you don't mind, it doesn't matter.” And while the very basic human principles don't change, demographics and other circumstances do alter what consumers value and how consumers engage with – and remain loyal to – brands. And that should matter to you. As such, our reactions and responses to the marketplace should take them into account. Here’s a short anecdote that brings this matter to life.
One evening a grandson was talking to his grandfather. The grandson asked his grandfather what he thought about the recent political scandals, the war, cell phones and MP3 players, school shootings, computers, email, and social networking, and things in general.
The Grandfather replied, 'Well, let me think a minute. I was born before television, penicillin, polio shots, frozen foods, copying machines, contact lenses, Frisbees, and the pill. There were no credit cards, laser beams, or ballpoint pens. Man had not invented pantyhose, air conditioners, or dishwashers, and clothes were hung out to dry in the fresh air. Man hadn't yet walked on the moon.”
“In my day 'grass' was mowed, 'coke' was a drink, 'pot' was something your mother cooked in and 'rock music' was your grandmother's lullaby. 'Aids' were helpers in the Principal's office, 'chip' meant a piece of wood, 'hardware' was found in a hardware store and 'software' wasn't a word.”
“The term 'making out' referred to how you did on your school exam and your grandmother and I got married first, and then lived together. Having a ‘meaningful relationship’ meant getting along with your cousins. Until I was 25, I called every man older than me, 'Sir'. This was all before gay-rights, computer dating, daycare centers, and group therapy. Time-sharing meant time the family spent together in the evenings and weekends, not purchasing condos. We never heard of FM radios, tape decks, CDs, electric typewriters, or yogurt. And men didn’t wear earrings. If you saw anything with 'Made in Japan' on it, it was junk.”
“Pizza Hut, McDonald's, and instant coffee were unheard of. We had 5 & 10-cent stores where things actually sold for 5 and 10 cents. Ice-cream cones, phone calls, rides on a streetcar, and a Pepsi were all a nickel. Or if you wanted to ‘communicate’ you could spend the nickel on enough stamps to mail 1 letter and 2 postcards. You could buy a new Chevy Coupe for $600. . . but who could afford one? Too bad, because gas was 11 cents a gallon.”
See the picture of the old man at the start of this blog? We’re betting he or someone like him was who you had in your mind’s eye. That’s who you are going to see on the basis of your perspective and the background and experience you just heard described. If so, you are in for a shock!
The “grandfather” in this story is only fifty-nine years old, which is why it’s probably a good idea to have leading-indicator metrics someplace in your marketing and research toolbox. If you do that, you virtually guarantee being able to not only identify attitudes that that customers value, but also identify attributes and benefits make them feel valued. No matter what the state of technology at the time. And today, that really matters!
William James wrote “the greatest discovery of my generation is that a human being can alter his life by altering his attitudes of mind.” The same is true if you alter how you actually research and measure those attitudes.
April usually has April Fools Day, one of my daughter's birthday's, Easter, Tax Day (TODAY!!!!!), Earth Day, and Rain (April Showers). 2008 has all of the above except Easter was last month.
One of the big pushes on the presidential campaign trail has been the Environment. But what do we really care about?
The following info I would normally post on my Collective Wisdom blog, but I put it here instead along with a picture borrowed from Fort Wayne Observed of one of our three rivers.
(The Picture is actually from Scott Spaulding. Click here for more of his collection.)
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
How Green Is My Marketing
Nielsen Online recently released findings which finds that protecting the environment has become increasingly important to consumers, with online buzz around sustainability growing 50 percent in 2007. While early in the year discussion was dominated by the topic of global warming, bloggers progressively addressed a wider variety of green-related issues, with a particular emphasis on personal action such as recycling, avoiding excess packaging, and carpooling.
Jessica Hogue, research director, Nielsen Online, said "...consumers are becoming increasingly vocal online about the issue of sustainability... Blogger attention to... issues like pollution, toxins and sustainable agriculture reveal an important intersection between personal health and environmental wellness."
Top 10 Sustainability Topics for 2007
Global Warming/Climate Change
Renewable Energy/Alternative Fuels
Transportation (hybrids, carpooling)
Source: Nielsen Online, BuzzMetrics
Note: Topics are ranked by number of messages among sustainability bloggers from 1/1/07 to 12/31/07, with the Buzz trend reflecting change from 1/1/07 to 12/31/07.
Discovery Channel's TreeHugger led the top sustainability blogs for 2007
Top 5 Sustainability Blogs for 2007
The Oil Drum
The Alternative Consumer
Source: Nielsen Online, BuzzMetrics
Not only are consumers looking for practical steps they can take to reduce personal environmental impact, but they are also holding corporations accountable for action and results, says the report. Bloggers are quick to condemn "greenwashing" - when they suspect companies misrepresent their environmental impact with aggressive PR campaigns - as spurious attempts to be "green." Consumers expect consistency in action and authentic and transparent messaging.
Top 5 Greenwashing Topics
Percent of Discussion
Incongruous with Company/Industry
Seek Regulated Oversight
Source: Nielsen Online, BuzzMetrics
The Nielsen Online analysis showed that similar environmental initiatives can provoke different consumer responses depending on a company's reputation and history. In the retail sector, says the study, while Wal-Mart and Target both introduced reusable shopping bags, some consumers voiced skepticism towards Wal-Mart because of its association with environmental, labor, and health care issues.
Hogue said "When it comes to the environment, consumers are insisting on both transparency and consistency from the corporations they patronize... Consumer support depends on action as well as perceived sincerity and commitment."
For more information, please visit Nielsen Online here.
Monday, April 14, 2008
If you are new to Blogging, and you use Blogger.com (a free service, now owned by Google), I have a hint for you.
You can find others that have the same interest, location, or a variety of other criteria, by going to your profile and clicking on some of the information you have revealed about yourself.
Here's an example...
I live in Fort Wayne, Indiana. So, on my profile, I clicked on Fort Wayne and there are over 1,400 bloggers listed. Click here to see for yourself.
Out of that 1,400, I would guess at least 400 are in-active. However there are some of us that have multiple blogs, so I would guess there are at least 1000 blogs that are updated on a regular interval.
By the way, if you have a blog that is not active and you are not planning on using it, please delete it. The web has enough garbage on it, without each of us added to the trash.
Sunday, April 13, 2008
A few weeks ago, I received a box of books authored by Harvey Mackay. I am re-reading one that I originally read when it first came out, Push the Envelope.
Also I get Harvey's current writings in my email:
Harvey Mackay's Column This Week
Find the courage to speak up and face challenges
A.G. Lafley, chairman and CEO of Procter & Gamble, says that his mother told him to have the courage of his convictions. He says his mother encouraged him to have the confidence to be himself, advice that stayed with Lafley when he almost left P&G in his sixth year there, according to an article in Fortune magazine.
Lafley says that he accepted another job because he felt the bureaucracy of the company was smothering him, and he didn't think the company would change quickly enough to keep him satisfied.
And so he submitted his resignation to his supervisor, Steve Donovan, who immediately tore it up. Lafley told him that he had made a copy of it, however.
Donovan told Lafley to leave and to call him at home later in the evening. When the two talked, Donovan told Lafley not to go to the office the following week, but to come and see him each night at his home. They'd have a beer or two and discuss what Lafley had been going through. Donovan kept probing until he hit the nerve of the problem: that Lafley couldn't stand all the bureaucracy.
Donovan was direct. "You're running away," he said. "You don't have the guts to stay and change it. You'll run from the next job, too."
Lafley said these words made him angry, and so, in order to prove that he was not running away, he stayed. That inspired him to speak up whenever something didn't work. He says it was the beginning of his realization that you have to make up your mind to speak up if you really want to change things.
Like Lafley, I received some good parental advice from my father, who told me: "If you want to be seen, stand up. If you want to be heard, speak up."
As Robert Frost so eloquently put it: "Half the world is composed of people who have something to say and can't, and the other half who have nothing to say and keep on saying it."
The expression, "the squeaky wheel gets the grease," may be used in a negative way sometimes, but you have to let people know what's eating at you. Don't expect your supervisors to be mind readers; you have to let them know what you're thinking. You might have great ideas, but how will anyone be aware of them if you don't share them?
Investment mogul Charles Schwab said, "I'll pay more for a man's ability to express himself than for any other quality he might possess."
Management guru Peter Drucker claimed that 60 percent of all management problems were the result of faulty communications ... and that includes people not speaking up.
Chances are, others share your concern. It takes courage to speak up—perhaps there's a fear of retaliation, concern about being labeled a complainer, or a reluctance to rock the boat. Stay calm, be logical and present your case in a clear and positive way. No whining! Waiting to see if things get better on their own really isn't a reasonable strategy. The following story might convince you.
A young man was on an important business trip when he suddenly realized that the next day was his wedding anniversary. Remembering that his wife was very fond of a canary he had given her, the man called a pet shop in their hometown.
The pet shop owner said, "You are really in luck. I have just received a special breed of parrot, extremely rare, and most intelligent. In fact, this parrot speaks six languages."
The $2,000 bird was delivered to his wife early the next morning with a card that said, "My own words cannot express my love for you."
When he returned from his trip a few evenings later, his wife greeted him and said that the bird he had sent her was in the oven and would be ready in 30 minutes.
"You are cooking what?" gasped the husband. "Darling, that is a rare talking parrot that cost me almost $2,000. It can speak six different languages! How could you make such a mistake?"
His wife replied, "Nobody told me anything about six different languages. That bird looked right at me while I was getting ready to cook it. If it was so smart, why didn't it speak up?"
Mackay's Moral: If you don't speak up, prepare to put up.
Miss a column? The last three weeks of Harvey's columns are always archived online.
More information and learning tools can be found online at harveymackay.com.
Harvey Mackay | MackayMitchell Envelope Company | 2100 Elm Street S.E. | Minneapolis | MN | 55414