How Often Should You “Hit” Your Customers With Advertising?

  It took us nearly 17 years to recognize a fact about marketing that we already knew. I’m talking about frequency: how often you should “hit” your prospects with ads. Instinct tells us it should be not too often. (You don’t want to burn them out.) And that instinct is what was behind the early formulas for sending ads to Internet prospects and buyers. The first rule was the most conservative: Only one email out of five could be a sales piece. Some of our bolder marketers did more. And before long, the rule was to send out seven emails a week, one a day. Four of them editorial; three of them advertising. That became the dominant formula for at …

Read MoreHow Often Should You “Hit” Your Customers With Advertising?

Questions You’d Be Embarrassed to Ask

I probably shouldn’t be reprinting stuff like this, but since I’m part of the group and since it seems that golfers are nearly universally fond of puerile and/or sentimental and/or downright corny humor (and since I’m part of the group), I give you these questions – some of which I’ve actually asked – passed this way by Joey Mac: Why do we leave cars worth thousands of dollars in our driveways and put our useless junk in the garage? Why don’t you ever see the headline “Psychic Wins Lottery”?Why is it that doctors and attorneys call what they do “practice”? Why is the man who invests all your money called a “broker”? Why isn’t there mouse-flavored cat food? Why are …

Read MoreQuestions You’d Be Embarrassed to Ask

Making money passively… very passively

Got this message today from my brother Justin: “We just closed on the sale of the ‘Seabird,’ our 12-unit apartment building 99 yards from the wide white-sand beach in Pompano Beach. We bought the property from a bank in 2011 for $515,000. We put a few hundred thousand in it over the years, but much of that was from cash flow. So our sale price of $1.325 million still netted us very healthy capital gains. Specifically, we’re distributing just shy of $770,000, including just over $667,000 in capital gains.” Justin has been building a very impressive real estate portfolio since he quit working for me in 2009 and went out on his own to make his fortune in real estate. I’ve been investing with …

Read MoreMaking money passively… very passively

Sir Anthony Hopkins Surprised Me

 Anthony Hopkins is one of the world’s greatest living actors. He’s probably best known for his portrayal of Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs (for which he won an Academy Award), its sequel Hannibal, and its prequel Red Dragon. Of his dozens of great film performances, my favorite may be in The Remains of the Day. He’s also acted in many theatrical productions and on television. (He starred in the critically acclaimed HBO series Westworld.) Besides his Oscar, Hopkins has won three BAFTA Awards (including one for lifetime achievement), two Emmys, and the Cecil B. DeMille Award. I sort of knew all that. But what I didn’t know was this… Sir Anthony is a talented composer. It turns …

Read MoreSir Anthony Hopkins Surprised Me

Briefs

 “Is sweating healthy?” Never one to be without an answer, I said, “Yes!” And then, “At least I think so.” And then I looked it up. It turns out sweating is useful but it’s not healthy in the sense that it will make you live longer. The primary purpose of sweating, my research says, is to cool down the body when it is overheating. Ideally, the sweat evaporates, thus cooling the skin. (In humid climates, this evaporation is reduced, which is why it takes longer to cool down in Florida than it does in Arizona.) So I guess the answer is, “No.” But sweating does feel good when I’m exercising. And if it feels good, it could mean the body …

Read MoreBriefs

The Time You Spend on Your Smartphone: Gold, Wood, or Poison?

There are basically three kinds of activities that you can choose to spend your time on: Golden – meaning activities that improve you Wooden – meaning activities that have no apparent effect on you Poisonous – meaning activities that diminish you in some way With a Golden activity, you’re working well on something you value. Something you are proud of and would do for free (or even pay to do). This is indubitably the best way to spend your time. With a Wooden activity, you’re doing something that simply amuses you. Something like playing video games or watching mindless movies or playing golf. You’re not causing harm, but you’re not doing anything constructive either. You are simply wasting time. With …

Read MoreThe Time You Spend on Your Smartphone: Gold, Wood, or Poison?

76 Million Baby Boomers Abscond To Fiji After Draining Nation’s Social Security, Medicare Accounts

From the Onion WOODLAWN, MD—Arriving en masse to the Pacific island nation after fleeing under the cover of night, 76 million baby boomers reportedly escaped to Fiji on Friday after completely draining the nation’s Social Security and Medicare accounts. Sources said the daring $3.1 trillion operation was discovered early this morning as stunned federal employees checked both programs’ reserves only to find that each now held a total of $0.00, the apparent culmination of a plan that reportedly was meticulously organized and executed over the last 30 years. “It’s gone, all gone, they completely cleaned us out,” said Social Security director Nancy Berryhill, revealing that airport security cameras had caught every American born between 1946 and 1964, having emptied the …

Read More76 Million Baby Boomers Abscond To Fiji After Draining Nation’s Social Security, Medicare Accounts

Sympathetic and Vulnerable in the Windy City

What the hell, I thought. Let’s try a yellow cab. Surely they’ve improved by now…We arrived in Chicago a bit after midnight last night. Having taken an Uber Black from Newport Beach to LAX four hours before, I was tempted to indulge in the luxury again. I would be guaranteed a spotlessly clean, late model luxury car driven by a well-dressed, English speaking person aiming to please. But we were on the arrivals level and the Ubers and other “shared transport” were upstairs at arrivals and knowing that K always prefers to go economy, we opted to walk straight out and see how the taxi situation looked. It looked good in the sense that the line was short. Our driver …

Read MoreSympathetic and Vulnerable in the Windy City

Culture > Logic

Joseph Schumpeter, an Austrian economist, had a unique view of free market economics. He had an insight that some of his best fellow economists were blind to. He understood that economics is ultimately not about supply and demand or about financial rewards but about culture. Culture always trumps rational analysis. Otherwise, why would the poor be willing to serve the rich by dying in war? Schumpeter was right in thinking that capitalism would eventually yield to socialism. Not, as Karl Marx had predicted, because of economic needs but because the culture of the powerful and educated classes would demand it. What he was not aware of was the force of the culture of countries that owned slaves or had colonies …

Read MoreCulture > Logic