Here's a new feature: A weekly collection of useful and interesting links for busy marketing and communication pros. We'll cover business topics, sure. But will also mix in some useful travel info and other items.
- More restaurants now offer "secret," off-the-menu items, promoted through social media and mobile apps. Not only do secret menus create customer loyalty by making people feel like insiders, but they offer a cheaper way to add new choices. "Secret" items don't require expensive menu or signage changes.
- Is LinkedIn a sleeping giant in the publishing game? The business networking site Is behaving that way. The company curates articles from over one million publications and sends them to its 200 million users, and also produces unique content through its influencer network.
- Christopher Penn reminds us: be where the competition isn't. He looks at the explosion in usage of the term "digital marketing," and wonders when he last got a high-quality, glossy direct mailer, for example. Digital marketing isn't really a descriptive term, anyway. Nearly all marketing is digital at some level -- even a glossy mailer.
- ESPN had a great piece this week on the integration of college football. In the 1960s my alma mater, Michigan State, took African-American players southern teams would not. The Spartans won championships, and soon everyone followed MSU's lead. (#humblebrag)
- As communicators and marketers, we've heard it before, but can't hear it too much: you have to tell a story.
- How to avoid looking like a stalker on LinkedIn, and a bunch of other useful tips for the site.
- Learn from how Southwest Airlines handled four social media crises. Among the learning: sometimes it's better to let folks sort things out themselves online. Also: targeting news to a handful of influential blogs can be just as effective as a press release.
- Speaking of airlines, aren't the majors generous to not charge fees for carry-on bags? Wait, what? Oh. It's really because airlines fear the potential add-on labor and liability costs of more checked luggage.