My interview with the guys from G.I. Joe Flagpoints was posted Sunday night and you can hear it at :

I reveal lots of secrets behind the marketing of the 3.75″ G.I.Joe product line and I share my thoughts on the current state of the brand, the future of G.I. Joe and my hopes for the success of the new G.I. Joe movie. The interview is long. About 1 hour, so grab your favorite beverage and settle back in your recliner. My thanks to Dave And Rob for a fun time reliving this adventure. Become a regular listener to their podcasts as they contact members of the original G.I. Joe team from the 80’s and 90’s. ENJOY!!!

Here’s a refresher course in numbers and reports a good marketing and sales executive should review and constantly be on top of. This is a good guide as you get ready for line reviews with senior management.  It will demonstrate that you are truly on top of your business.

1. Year End Sales (Total)

2. Year End Sales by:

  • Category
  • Item
  • License

Analyze each of these in terms of total sales dollars, total sales by units, and as a percentage of your total business

3. TOP Items (5/10/25) by Dollar$ and Units

4. TOP Items by Price Points

5. TOP Items by Profitability

6. Sales by Customer

             Top 5/10/25 Customers           Dollar$     %of Business

7. Sales by Trade Classification

  • Mass Market Retailers
  • Supermarket & Drug Stores
  • Mid-Tier Retailers
  • Sporting Goods
  • Specialty Stores

Career Advice

Posted: November 19, 2010 in Brand ME!

Here’s a collection of tips and advice I found in The Boston Herald.Com. Its from McClatchy Newspapers and was written by Diane Stafford.

1. Use to connect with people you’ve worked with, gone to school with, etc. Join the site’s relevant online groups to get your name in their networks. (Note: expand your network by sending invitations to everyone you know)

2. Don’t just look on well-worn paths. if you respond only to online job postings, you’re going to be joining hundreds, maybe thousands of other applicants. (Network. Ask friends to introduce you. Offer to intern or volunteer even if you’ve graduated. You need to get your foot in the door.)

3. Get out of your house. Attend professional and association meetings in your field. Ask for information, not jobs. (Find out who the hiring manager is at the place you want to work and ask for an informational interview.)

4. Go to job clubs, job fairs, community career offices at community colleges and large public libraries where you will find excellent job search resources. (Be sure to make use of your college or university’s career placement center. Get to know the people who work there. Ask them for help. Show them your desire to find a career. Offer to help them. Do something to stand out.)

5. Remember your manners. Thank anyone who helps you. (You can send a e-mail, but I suggest a formal & brief letter along with a copy of your resume. You’ll be surprised.  Sometimes “old school” methods still work!)

Years ago, in graduate school at Syracuse University, I learned a valuable lesson about advertising. I pass along my adaptation of an old trade ad from McGraw-Hill publications that speaks to its power!

“I don’t know who you are.

I don’t know your company.

I don’t know your company’s product.

I don’t know what your company stands for.

I don’t know your company’s customers.

I don’t know your company’s record.

I don’t know your company’s reputation.

Now — what was it you wanted to sell me?”

In addition to the information you are receiving from the MBA career consultant I want to pass along some advice I recently read in USA Weekend.  This is adapted from an article by Laura Hoxworth.

70% of U.S. hiring managers have rejected candidates because of information found online.

To protect your image:

Be Aware. Monitor your reputation. Sign up at to get e-mail notifications when your name appears online. will search the blogosphere for mentions of you that won’t show up in Google.

Build Your Web Presence. Generate more positive information about you online. Create a blog, make a website for yourself and sign up for networking sites such as

Check Privacy Settings. on sites like, the default privacy settings are much more public than private. Make sure you know exactly who can see what information.

For more information read The Future of Reputations, by Daniel Solove

Here are some marketing/business books that should be in all your bookcases. Many are probably out of print, but try searching,, and (Borders Books).
Positioning, Al Ries & Jack Trout
Marketing Warfare, Al Ries & Jack Trout
The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing, Al Ries & Jack Trout
The 22 Immutable Laws of Branding, Al Ries & Laura Ries
The Origin of Brands, Al Ries & Laura Ries
Blue Ocean Strategy, Chan W. Kim & Renee Mauborgne
Exploiting Chaos, Jeremy Gutsche
The Brand Gap, Marty Neumeier
The Designful Company, Marty Neumeier
The Fundamentals of Marketing, Edward Russel
Business Model Generation,Alexander Osterwalder & Yves Pigneur
Do You Matter? How Great Design Will Make People Love Your Company, Robert Brunner & Stewart Emery
Guerilla Marketing Excellence, Jay Conrad Levinson
Business is Combat, James D. Murphy
The Art of War for Executives, Donald G. Krause
Corps Values, Zell Miller
Warfighting, The U.S. Marine Corps Book of Strategy
Business Leadership the Marine Corps Way, Dan Carrison & Rod Walsh
Hope is Not a Method, Gordon Sullivan & Michael Harper
Corporate Combat, William Peacock
From Battlefield to Bottomline — Leadership Lessons of Ulysses S. Grant, Bill Holton
Leadership Secrets of Attila the Hun, Wess Roberts
Scuttle Your Ships Before Advancing, Richard Luecke
Thinkertoys, Michael Michalko
How to Think Like Leonardo daVinci, Michael J. Gelb
The Warrior’s Edge, Col. John R. Alexander, Major Richard Groller, & Janet Morris
Rangers Lead the Way, Dean Hohl & Maryann Karinch

Here is a list of useful websites you should keep on file. I guarantee you will make extensive use of them throughout your MBA studies.

MBA Marketing Resources

NEWS (Investors Business Daily) (Providence Business News)  (Yahoo finance)



MARKETING    American Marketing Association (Harvard Business Review) (Product Management Institute)   Proctor & Gamble



CREATIVE RESOURCES (Corporate Design Foundation)