Help Take the Guesswork Out of Gift Giving

Buying gifts for your family are hard enough. Buying gifts for the people you work and do business with are nearly impossible. You want to get them something that is both nice and professional. That’s where Giftagram comes in. The company packs uniquely curated boxes that you can help choose through its app.  Boxes can include everything from sweets to alcohol, but that’s not all. If you want to give a gift that keeps on giving, Giftagram offers subscription services ranging from vinyl records, wine, socks, hot sauce and many more. The packages are customizable as well. You can send boxes to one or 100. You can see the options for yourself in this executive gift guide the Giftagram curators put together for the C-Suite Network.

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Communicating, Reaching, BITSING and the ABCDs of Image Leadership

Best Seller TV, the only show dedicated to covering today’s best-selling business books on C-Suite TV, is announcing its November lineup featuring in-depth interviews with leading business authors Deirdre Breakenridge, author of Answers for Modern Communicators: A Guide to Effective Business Communications, Stacey Alcorn, author of Reach! Dream, Stretch, Achieve, Influence, Frans de Groot, author of The Seven Laws of Guaranteed Growth: BITSING: The World’s First Business Management Model that Guarantees Success and Sylvie di Giusto, author of The Image of Leadership: How leaders package themselves to stand out for the right reasons.

Deirdre Breakenridge, author of Answers for Modern Communicators: A Guide to Effective Business Communications, delves into how the definition of the modern day communicator has changed. It used to mean that only people who were trained were the communicators, but nowadays; with the changes in media and social media, anyone can be a citizen journalist and act as a communicator. Breakenridge says that communications is at the heart of every business as it helps build relationships with customers. But as more channels or platforms emerge, attention spans across the board are fragmented with the average span being eight seconds for highly digitized individuals. She argues people don’t have to be everywhere, just where your customers need and want you to be in order to be an effective communicator.


How to Rewire Your Thinking About “Entitlement”

“At extreme levels, entitlement is a toxic narcissistic trait.”

So says a recent study conducted by Dr. Joshua Grubbs and published in the Psychological Bulletin. “When people think that they should have everything they want—often for nothing—it comes at the cost of relationships with others and, ultimately, their own happiness.”

Feeling “entitled” is an increasingly common line of thinking that is destroying the fabric of our society, according to Live Abundant founder, financial strategist and multi-bestselling author Doug Andrew. Drawing on decades of experience in both his work and personal life, as expounded on in his book Entitlement Abolition, Andrew teaches the three dimensions of authentic wealth—foundational, intellectual and financial. By incorporating into one’s life all three of these dimensions, we can avoid the plague of entitlement and instead live life more abundantly.

Andrew is best known as a financial planning and investment expert and radio host who speaks frequently about money as a component of life fulfillment, and the pitfalls of going after money and consumerism at the expense of one’s health, family and happiness. His prior books include Missed Fortune, The Last Chance Millionaire (a NYT best seller), and Millionaire by Thirty.

“In today’s me-centric-instant-gratification world, too many of us fall into the trap of self-centeredness and consumerism,” Andrew says. Unless the problem of entitlement is addressed and reversed, we and our posterity face a troubling future.

Here are five steps Andrew teaches to prevent entitlement creeping into your own life:

Be Aware of the Plague

As soon as knowledge, material wealth and abundance build in our lives, a sense of entitlement naturally starts to creep in. It’s part of the history of civilization. “In our own lives dealing with it is a never-ending cycle—unless we see the warning signs and learn the skills to overcome it,” teaches Andrew.

Today’s generation of leaders, in particular, must be aware of this epidemic, transmitted by the pervasive “what’s in it for me?” mindset, a disease that has crept into just about every aspect of society today. Leaders need to work together to eliminate the entitlement mentality among children and young adults before it’s too late. “These are young people who may have been born on third base, but grew up thinking they had hit a triple,” says Andrew.

Empower vs. Enable your Family

We all want nothing more than to succeed in life while elevating the lives of those we love and those with whom we work. To do this we must help teach our children—as well as our subordinates and colleagues—“how to fish” rather than dumping fish into their laps, teaches Andrew.

“If we give them the tools to prosper, we’ll have the confidence they’ll continue to pass the bounty along to those who come after them.”

Abraham Lincoln said, “The worst thing you can do for those you love is the things they could do for themselves.”

Avoid the Scarcity Mindset

Strategic coach Dan Sullivan has talked at length about the “scarcity mindset” and how to avoid it. “Scarcity leads us to believe that our resources, whether they’re global energy resources or our own family’s food and finances, are finite and in danger of depletion,” he says.

“When we’re in a scarcity mindset, we’re in a doomsday fog, without hope of prosperity. Then we tend to slip into a scarcity spiral, where personal unhappiness and dissatisfaction only compound our sense that everything is limited and soon-to-disappear.”

In this mindset, we start calling life “unfair” and think, like in kids’ sports these days, that all the players should get a trophy just for having their name on the roster—regardless of how hard they practiced or honed their skills or won the games. They want “others” to take care of them, whether that’s family, team, company or government, he writes.

We overcome the scarcity mindset by thinking in terms of abundance. “We feel increased excitement as we seek new skills, compounding our knowledge as individuals and communities to create and produce even more. We are in a state of chronic gratitude.” In other words, he says, “we constantly identify those things we’re grateful for. This helps us get out of the victim mentality.”

Think “We-centric”

Using an example from the financial world to illustrate how our society has become “we-centric,” Andrew quotes one of his own mentors, Lee Brower: “Traditional estate and financial planning have done more to destroy families and their assets than the federal estate tax could ever do!” And why? asks Andrew. Because it encourages consumption while discouraging saving money. It takes a family from thinking about “we” to thinking about “me,” with both children and grandchildren focused on “When do I get my share?” It’s all about four “Ds”: divide, defer, distribute, dissipate.

“When handled this way, wealth is transferred without a system to foster responsibility and accountability,” says Andrew. “On the other hand, when families are united in the effort to perpetuate the family wealth, amazing things can happen.”

But to do this a family must have an “equal opportunity” approach, versus  “equal distribution,” which translates to four “Ps”: preservation, protection, perpetuation, prosperity.

Andrew encourages use of a phrase we all know that can remind us to think we-centric: “United we stand; divided we fall.”

Post Submitted by Doug Andrew

Since 1974, Doug Andrew has counseled tens of thousands of people on how to make healthy financial decisions, focusing particularly on the pitfalls of going after money and consumerism at the expense of one’s health, family and happiness. His books include bestsellers Missed Fortune and The Last Chance Millionaire; as well as Millionaire by Thirty (co-authored with sons Emron and Aaron) and Entitlement Abolition.

Entangled Marketing, Thoughtful Philanthropists, Force Multipliers and Hustling Gigs

Best Seller TV, the only show dedicated to covering today’s best-selling business books on C-Suite TV, is announcing its August lineup featuring in-depth interviews with leading business authors Sebastian Jespersen and Stan Rapp, authors of Release the Power of Entangled Marketing: Moving Beyond Engagement, Richard Marker, author of Saying Yes Wisely: Insights for the Thoughtful Philanthropist, Tony Chatman, author of The Force Multiplier, and Joel Block, author of Stop Hustling Gigs and Start Building a Business: 101+ Tricks of the Trade to Help Entrepreneurs and Self-Employed People Build a Money-Making Machine.

Sebastian Jespersen and Stan Rapp, authors of Release the Power of Entangled Marketing: Moving Beyond Engagement discuss the term ‘entangled marketing’ and how it can change the way brands interact with their customers. Entangled marketing is a new business model that leads to an enduring, mutually rewarding relationship with customers in the internet era. “Entanglement” is used as a metaphor for what is happening right now — the way one thing blends with another, making everything intertwined. Jespersen says that once brands start entangling with customers, trust becomes an essential part of the relationship; and like any other relationship, it can get messy if broken.

Richard Marker, author of Saying Yes Wisely: Insights for the Thoughtful Philanthropist, targets philanthropists of all levels — from the very rich to the occasional donor. The book explains how ‘saying yes wisely’ means that you’ve thought about why you’re giving and why giving is a priority for you. Marker states that while many people are charitable, many don’t know the intricacies of philanthropy such as best practices, core competencies, ethics and laws — all leading to making good, responsible decisions. The book aims to fill that gap and also argues how philanthropy can’t take the place of government, given the current administration’s change in policy.

Tony Chatman, author of The Force Multiplier wrote the book as a way to address a gap in leadership in a more practical, and less theoretical, way that would be applicable to everyone — from first-time leaders to executives. Chatman argues that if first-time leaders have a solid foundation about what it means to be a leader, they can avoid a number of pitfalls when they become executives. He also defines a ‘force multiplier’ as someone who brings out the best in others simply because of their presence. This, Chatman says, is “what makes a leader indispensable.”

Joel Block, author of Stop Hustling Gigs and Start Building a Business: 101+ Tricks of the Trade to Help Entrepreneurs and Self-Employed People Build a Money-Making Machine talks about giving people the tools and know how to put things in motion successfully. Block states that the trick to being successful is having a business that can do multiple things that are derivative of each other, and do them well. He adds that the reason a business isn’t successful is because they’re “always scrambling” and going from gig to gig, lacking stability.

All episodes of Best Seller TV will air throughout the month on C-Suite TV and are hosted by TV personality, Taryn Winter Brill.


Johnson & Johnson CMO: Innovation needs to sit outside the bottle

How long?

2-3 minutes

Alison Lewis, the global chief marketing officer of Johnson & Johnson consumer division, has little appetite for new flavours and variants but instead wants to rethink innovation as a means to solve consumer problems.

Johnson & Johnson CMO: Innovation needs to sit outside the bottle

“I believe in breakthrough innovation. We innovate to solve problems, which then allows us to push ourselves to not just launch the next fragrance of skin cream or body lotions or the next flavour of Listerine. Our products are getting outside of the bottle, the jar, the pill, to bring much more dynamic solutions to the marketplace, ” Lewis said, speaking to Campaign at the Cannes Lions Festival, about her ambitions to disrupt the market beyond lotions in a jar.

Innovation outside the bottle

The former Coke veteran, appointed as the first global chief marketing officer at J&J just over three years ago, has been busy re-engineering brand building at the health and beauty behemoth targeted around innovation pipeline, building global scale and building key marketing capabilities across all the different markets. Lewis outlined the four ‘Ss’ (along with the 4 Ps of marketing) that are required to build marketing capabilities for the new marketer.

“The modern marketer needs to be a scientist, a strategist, a storyteller, and a socialiser. I’ve made sure we have developed our marketing development curriculum around these four Ss to help us engage and communicate with our consumers and help develop…

New Office Depot Push Aims to Take Care of Business: Battling Amazon and Staples

Office supply chains are going to the marketing mattresses. One month after Staples began repositioning itself in a new ad campaign, Office Depot is bringing out its own new brand campaign and messaging. After attempts for a $6.3 billion merger between the two office supply chains failed last year, each brand is doing its best to compete against the fast-growing Amazon.

“Marketing is key,” said Matt Sargent, senior VP-retail at consulting firm Frank N. Magid Associates. “The one advantage Staples or Office Depot has over Amazon is they’re focused on a narrow set of categories and that means something to their users.”

In Boca Raton-based Office Depot’s new push, the company will emphasize how it can help its customers, both businesses and consumers, accomplish their work tasks. “Taking care of business is not for the faint of heart. Still, you take care of it,” a voiceover says in a 30-second TV spot. “But who takes care of you?” The video shows busy moms juggling careers, and construction and office workers toiling at their jobs as they turn to Office Depot Office Max for supplies. The song, “Taking care of business,” which the brand first tapped for its marketing in the late 80s but has not used in at least five years, returns as Office Depot’s theme.

“Our brand needs a bit of refreshing,” explained Diane Nicks, senior VP-marketing at Office Depot. “‘Taking care of business’ is more than just a tagline, it’s really how we’re going to connect emotionally with customers.”

Less humor, more TCB
The new work is more serious in tone than more recent, humorous efforts from the brand, and also marks Office Depot’s return to TV since a back-to-school push last year. The brand’s previous messaging, “Gear Up for Great,” dates back to 2015. That campaign was created with McCann, which had worked with Office…

Farfetch CMO John Veichmanis: ‘Data is the new marketer’s currency’

As Farfetch’s newly appointed chief marketing officer, John Veichmanis is at the helm of a small army of 130 creatives, data scientists, editors and artificial intelligence specialists on the marketing team at the company’s London headquarters.

Veichmanis, formerly the company’s svp of digital marketing, took over the post at the beginning of June from former CMO Stephanie Horton. Now, he’s in charge of guiding Farfetch’s marketing strategy as the company pushes for profitability and preps itself for a forthcoming IPO, which is expected to be valued anywhere from $1.5 billion to $5 billion.

Veichmanis explained his data-driven approach to building brand awareness, the looming threat of Amazon and how the company’s recent $397 million round of funding will help drive market growth.

You didn’t have a background in fashion when you joined Farfetch in 2015. How is that beneficial to your role?
Ultimately, the marketing discipline is becoming increasingly appreciative of technology and how it can enable you to build a richer dialogue with consumers. That’s really important, and that’s what I bring to the party: an ability to build meaningful customer propositions, but then figure out how we can use technology to actually reach the audience and tell stories online more effectively.

Still, the meaning of luxury keeps evolving. How do you approach that sector, specifically?
The challenge for Farfetch is that we want to build a globally recognized brand. But if you want to build a brand in the luxury space, you have to make sure you’re telling your story to the right people, otherwise there’s a tremendous amount of waste. A real focus for us is to use the data on our platform — the rich profiles of visitors and existing customers — to find more customers. We’re using technology to do that. We, in effect, reduce our reach so we can target those who love luxury and fashion, and then increase communication with those people. That’s the role of the modern-day CMO in luxury: not just to use technology to target the right people, but to then build a dialogue and an evolving story over time for inspiration, ideas and then purchases.

Can you get more specific about the technology you’re using?
Over the course of the last two years, we’ve invested around $4 million in our marketing technology platform. It was built in house. On the demand side of the equation, so we’ve invested heavily in marketing technology, as well as artificial intelligence and data science. A quarter of my team…

Why sustainable success starts with leading from within

Nikki Fogden-Moore

Transformational leaders evolve rather than resolve – they are agile, authentic and committed, both at work and at home. They are the CEO of their business and their life. However there is an art to getting this right.

According to Fortune 500 too many CEO’s fail at their jobs – about a quarter of CEO departures were involuntary – for a variety of reasons. Forced out due to performance or stakeholder issues, stress, decision making processes and not being aligned with a new board or the new direction of the company.

Leadership can be a lonely road. The collateral damage of leadership without a balance is not just at work – but also at home. Felix Lluberes, President and Co-Founder of Position Logic stated that balancing family life with work performance was one of the biggest challenges.

Great leaders know they need to be healthy, wealthy and wise. To lead from within, lead by example and then lead others. It starts with these 3 core pillars…

Santander’s CMO on the role purpose plays in the brand’s ‘Unlocking London’ cycle campaign

As part of its ongoing sponsorship of London’s self-service cycle hire scheme, Santander has unveiled a fresh ad encouraging people in the capital to ‘Unlock Your London’ as it also looks to show people that it is about more than just bank accounts.

The campaign features a range of influencers including fashion blogger Ellie Adams and ‘Foodbusker’ writer John Quilter, who are shown using the Santander Cycles to travel to their favourite spots in London to hammer home the idea that bikes aren’t just for commuters. Longtime brand ambassadors Jessica Ennis-Hill and Jenson Button also make an appearance.

For Santander’s chief marketing officer Keith Moor, it’s important that the bank weaves itself into the lives of customers and potential customers by putting itself at the heart of their everyday experiences.

“It’s about conveying our purpose and helping people — and businesses — prosper,” he says. “Doing that isn’t just about helping them with their banking. It’s about looking at the communities they live in and then helping improve those and supporting initiatives that provide a more sustainable future for people in the UK; supporting cycling is one way of doing that.”

As part of the push, each influencer involved has curated their own route for riders to follow. These will sit on a bespoke landing page showcasing the best spots across the city for working out, eating, shopping and more.

Unlocking social

When The Drum caught up with Moor back in May he said that social media would play an integral role in driving customer loyalty. When pressed on how ‘Unlocking London’ will aid the brand in this mission, he explains that the ads focus around experiences offer up a different way for Santander to speak to people online.

“It’s not just about banking, it’s about fitting into their lives. [The sponsorship deal] allows people to see that we’re a brand that’s got a wider perspective to offer, we’re not just about bank accounts.”

Moor says…

Look Out For This Surprising Consequence Of Influencer Marketing That Could Hurt Your Brand

LAS VEGAS, NV – MAY 19: Television personality Alyssa Edwards (L) and YouTube personality 2nakita_dragun take a selfie with a fan during the NYX Professional Make Up store opening at the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino on May 19, 2017 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Photo by Bryan Steffy/Getty Images for NYX Professional Makeup)

Influencer marketing campaigns—also known as viral marketing or seeded marketing campaigns—seem to be all the rage these days. In some categories, such as fashion and beauty, marketers have gone all in and are heavily reliant on so-called “influencers” to help drive brand mentions, positive sentiment and possibly even sales. Indeed, as mentioned by AJ Agrawal here on the Forbes CMO Network last December, influencer marketing and related approaches are exploding in popularity. Although no longer a new approach to marketing, word-of-mouth marketing and influencer-related campaigns were seen by Kantar Media as one of the big trends for 2017 in social media marketing. Further, marketers seem to be putting their money where their mouths are. For example, a November 2016 survey by influencer marketing agency Linquia reported by found a whopping 72% of marketers planned to increase or maintain their influencer budgets this year.

The rising popularity and sophistication of influencer and viral marketing is in part due to the growing consumer trend of avoiding advertising in its more “traditional” forms. Ad blocking, for example, continues to be on the rise in the digital space, which means that marketers have had to find new ways to reach and influence consumers without relying on display, search and social ads as much. Beyond this fairly pragmatic reason for turning to influencer marketing, marketers are also looking for ways to leverage the authenticity embedded in the connections that influencers or “seeds” have with their followers and friends in social media. This can be very successful for brands, including large mass-market brands such as L’Oréal. Last year they created a five-member “beauty squad” of social media influencers in the UK for their flagship L’Oréal Paris brand that has proven to be an effective part of the brand’s marketing mix.

But is it all positive when it comes to influencer marketing? Are there any concerns that marketers should have or be aware of when running influencer campaigns? If so, what should marketers be on the lookout for?

It is these kinds of questions–healthy skepticism, let’s call it–that prompted me, along with three other academics, to conduct a study that looked at various outcomes of running influencer campaigns. We were looking in particular for unintended consequences of seeding products with apparently influential individuals who are supposed to spread word of mouth (WOM) about those products through social media. The results of this study were published in the journal Marketing Science (one of the leading academic journals in marketing) earlier this year. (Note: the article is behind a paywall but you can access a version provided by Oxford University here.) I co-authored this article with Inyoung Chae (Emory University), Yakov Bart (Northeastern University) and Dai Yao (National University of Singapore).

Our study looked at “seeded marketing campaigns,” which are a typical form of influencer/viral campaign in which “seed” consumers are selected from a community, sent free products, encouraged to use them and then share their experiences with others by posting online. We focused on products in the cosmetics, beauty and skincare categories with data coming from a very popular online community platform in South Korea called Naver. Over the course of our study, we examined 390 campaigns that featured 192 different brands in these categories. For each campaign, we tracked all the WOM generated (in the form of posting in the online community). Importantly, we tracked not only all the WOM generated for…