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Thursday, August 30, 2007

Unlocked iPhone Shows Principles for Success

iPhone Hacked, Unlocked: Good News For You

By Terry L. Brock

What was thought to be impossible happened this week. Apple’s new iPhone had been thought to be hack-proof and permanently locked. This would mean you could only use it under the terms that Apple and AT&T – Apple’s designated carrier – allowed. However, this week the iPhone was successfully hacked so that customers can purchase an iPhone and use it on another network. This opens a lot of options for those who chose to use a different rate plan and a different service.

We’ll let the attorneys sort out legal ramifications for Apple and AT&T but for now this is a major break-through. This is due to the genius of one determined 17 year old named George Hotz from New Jersey. He not only has an IQ of 152, but he is also very persistent. He worked hard over the summer getting up at 7:00 am and working diligently till midnight day after day. He invested over 500 hours in cracking this code.

But he didn’t do it alone. George regularly consulted others through Blogs, email and other technologies to master various pieces of the puzzle. He assimilated the necessary information and then formulated his plan to make it happen. It was through smart work and diligent effort that he made it work.

You can see this article in video on my Blog (here) or by going to YouTube at:

Interesting that he put his iPhone up for sale on eBay (another leveraged use of technology) and at last count, bids were upwards of $15,000 --- not a bad price to get when selling your phone! Something tells me that George Hotz is going to do well in life.

This has huge ramifications for Apple and AT&T. Apple could end up selling more phones since it will be available to other carriers. In the US, T-Mobile is the only other major player currently able to access the GSM network. Verizon and Sprint/Nextel use a different system largely so it will require some work before their customers can make full use of the iPhone. How it effects AT&T could be another story.

Apple’s negotiations in Europe and Asia will be affected by this breakthrough. Carriers will be more concerned about someone jumping from their network to another through an unlocked phone and a handful of SIM cards.

This development is very important in technology. I love the iPhone’s concept and features. However, I hesitate to buy one as the battery is not removable and will go dead after 300-400 charges (about 1 year of normal use). If your battery goes dead on a Friday before a long weekend holiday, you’ll be without your cell phone for a long period of time. Plus, many people use Microsoft Outlook for their calendar and contacts and the iPhone doesn’t recognize this without a lot of transferring and translating. This is too much hassle for many in business.

I’m impressed with what George Hotz did and the ramifications of this for you and me in our own life and businesses. Here are some important principles that you can apply from this experience:

1. Remain Persistant. It pays off in the digital age. Hotz spent over 500 hours working on his iPhone. Sure, he’s a 17 year old, living at home and has the time to do it. However, if you devote time to learning and working on something very useful, you can achieve what is right for you. What relationships do you need to build and nurture in your life? Relationship Marketing takes careful persistence to make it work. What books would help you grow and become a better you? What if you spent more time with quality people and quality books rather than second-rate TV programs? Just a thought.

2. Work With Your Tribe. I believe in the saying, “None of us is as smart as all of us.” Don’t do it alone – have your community around you. George relied on information from many around the world. He would ask questions on forums, read Blogs and learn all he could that way. There are no books on the market about “How to Unlock your iPhone.” Breakthrough ideas often don’t exist in books. However, bits and pieces of what you need are scattered throughout the Net on Blogs, obscure websites, in Podcasts, on YouTube and other places. As you get to know these places and hang around them, you will be in a new world. Relationship Marketing means you help others get what they need and they help you. The primary currency of exchange is valuable information. Get the necessary knowledge so you have more currency valued by others.

3. Don’t Be Afraid To Ask Questions. You need a safe environment where you feel comfortable asking questions. If you are afraid to ask questions out of fear of what you think others will think, you’re impeding your progress. Cultivate an attitude to ask any question to get the answers you need to achieve your goals.

4. Learn How To Learn George Hotz didn’t know the iPhone a year ago. He had to learn. He had to acquire new skills. This is what matters today. Something new is going to come out that will be of interest to you. Sure, you don’t know how to use it now – you probably don’t even know what “It” is yet. But when it does come out, you can blend its full functionality into your life to be better off if (big IF) you are willing to learn how to learn quickly and apply useful technology to make your life and the lives of those around you better.

George Hotz has entered the ranks of popular, famed tech wizardry. Congratulations to him! As is possible today he soared from obscurity to international fame overnight. This is how our world works today. What is holding you back from becoming a well-known expert? Build relationships with others in many tribes by the principles of Relationship Marketing. Learn how to learn and keep learning valued tools for others. As you apply these principles, you’ll be equipped for success in today’s fast-moving world.

And who knows, maybe you could come up with a removable battery and Outlook compatibility for iPhones. THAT would be amazing!

Terry Brock is an international marketing coach and columnist who helps businesses market more effectively, leveraging technology. He shows busy professionals how to squeeze more out of their days using time-honored rules and practical technology tools. He can be reached at 407-363-0505, by e-mail at or through his website at

Copyright © 2007, Terry Brock, All Rights Reserved Internationally. No portion may be reprinted or used in any way without prior written permission

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Skype and Relationship Marketing

How Skype Handles Relationship Marketing
in a Crisis: And What You Can Learn From It

by Terry L. Brock

By now you’ve heard about the recent outage that hit Skype and its over 200 million users recently. The system went down for 36 hours meaning it was almost impossible to use the service anywhere in the world. I experienced this just as I was about to demonstrate it to a business group where I was planning to discuss the advantages of Skype!

A crisis reveals the true metal of a company or an individual. It reveals what the inner strengths and weaknesses are. Many have cited the excellent response that came when Johnson and Johnson had the crisis with tampered Tylenol tablets in the 80’s. J&J could have tried to cover it up. Instead, they turned that tragedy into a coup for the company by quickly pulling all Tylenol from stores until the problem could be fixed. Yes, it cost J&J millions and they lost a lot of money over it. But the long-term benefits were enormous for the company. The public saw their strong commitment to doing what is right, even in the face of business loss. J&J is more respected today as a result. Doing the right thing pays off.

Back to our friends at Skype, they had a serious problem on their hands last week and it seems they could have responded better. Responses were limited largely to their own website material and carefully-controlled PR efforts. Relationship Marketing is about connecting with customers at times like this. Being open and accessible are critically important in crisis times. Statements on a company-controlled Blog alone are not sufficient.

Recently I had the honor of seeing Skype’s headquarters in Tallin, Estonia where I got to see the nature of this company. They have a definite high tech flair complete with genius people, great working conditions and value on results, not just activity. It is an ideal company to work for in many respects. You can see the video I did with Villu Arak at and learn about the Skype culture more (video starts with scenes from Stockholm Sweden).

Villu detailed comments at the Skype official blog which you can read at: . The company made a valiant effort to restore confidence among its more than 200 million users worldwide. The personal message from Niklas Zennström, CEO of Skype, was posted on the Skype home page (

I think their efforts are good, but could go farther. This great service and great company could help address concerns by providing more in-depth help. I have yet to see an interview anywhere in the press with Skype personnel about this issue as of this writing. Also, Niklas Zennström himself could have a video explanation on the Skype site which could help increase the human touch. When a CEO comes on camera, is real and genuine with nothing to hide, it only helps credibility and helps customers know there are real human beings who care behind a corporate behemoth.

On a practical side, I find the benefits of Skype continue to be outstanding and provide a strong competitive advantage for small business. Some of these include: 1) Free. Yes, free audio communication worldwide is what Skype is known for. 2) Video is free. This leverages technology to enhance Relationship Marketing and gives you the ability to connect more effectively with customers and prospects. 3) Conference calls are free (Skype and regular phone numbers). Yesterday I did another conference call using Skype and it worked beautifully. We had both Skype-based and phone-based participants and all were understandable. The difference was that those using Skype came across incredibly well. 5) SkypeOut saves huge phone bills when you’re on the road. 6) The new SkypePro bundles several services into a handy pack ideal for the international business traveler who wants a competitive advantage. 7) Skype’s unlimited US and Canadian phone calling option will save a lot if you call Canada often.

So what are the practical applications from this outage for you and me in our businesses?

First, have a well-defined backup plan for your own business. Balthasar Gracian, a Spanish Jesuit priest advised to have in “double measure” the necessities of life. This is most important in communication for your business. Have back-up plans for back-up plans Since communication is so vital for business, it is wise to have 3,4, even 5 alternative forms of communication. Remember, any technology will eventually go down. It is just a matter of when. Prepare for that.

Think about it. Things break. This is the way the world works. Prepare during the times when things are working well for outages. How will you operate if your ISP goes down? What if you can’t get access to the Net through your normal means? What if your cell phone doesn’t work? Thinking through these possibilities and making proper plans in advance is very smart business.

Second, when your own crisis hits, go out of your way to be candid and prompt. Tell customers what happened and keep them informed. Johnson and Johnson did it right with the Tylenol scare. Rudy Guliani did an excellent job communicating after the attacks in September 11, 2001. Companies and individuals have a chance to show their best in a time of crisis. Prepare for yours now.

Yes, Skype had a major glitch---the worst they have ever experienced. It essentially shut down their system for 36 hours. In the Internet Age and need for instant communication, this is a horrible experience. However the company continues to move forward, provide new and improved products and services and now, correct for major outages.

Terry Brock is an international marketing coach and columnist who helps businesses market more effectively, leveraging technology. He shows busy professionals how to squeeze more out of their days using time-honored rules and practical technology tools. He can be reached at 407-363-0505, by e-mail at or through his website at

Copyright © 2007, Terry Brock, All Rights Reserved Internationally. No portion may be reprinted or used in any way without prior written permission.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Relationship Marketing in Your Presentations

You want to market more effectively and reach prospective clients. You want to build your credibility in the marketplace. One of the best ways to accomplish that has been talked about for years by making presentations.

That sounds good (and it is) but there is a lot more to it. Just standing up there and yakking about what you can do is a sure-fire way to turn off audiences. So, how can you leverage presentations to building business and do more effective relationship marketing?

Make it meaningful to the listener.

It goes back to the old WII-FM – What’s In It For Me? This is the question you want to see tattooed onto the forehead of everyone in your audience. They are there to learn, be entertained or to hear what you have to say for some other reason. Make sure that what you say is relevant to them.

Here are some handy tips that can help make your next presentation memorable – and a new tool that is a breakthrough device for presenting.

Know Your Audience. You have to know who they are, what their needs are and what pain they are going through. What are their current challenges? As you can relate your presentation to a solution for their problems, you are much more likely to be successful.

Connect With The Audience. You want to make sure you connect with them. This has a side benefit of decreasing the natural fear that comes from public speaking. The more you focus on them, and building a strong relationship with them, the less fear you’ll have. As your fear decreases they will feel better about what you have to say. Sounds like a good win-win situation!

Involve Your Audience. Getting feedback from them and answering their questions is one of the best ways to connect. Strive to be the solution-enabler who helps to bring the answers out of the crowd more than the all-knowing wise sage who dispenses pearls of wisdom. This requires you to act more as a facilitator.

Provide Value For Your Audience. This is most important. Find what they need and make sure they get value for their time with you. Giving a valuable handout – not just your brochure – can help to lock in the information you have.

As you get to know your audience and their needs you’ll find that you become more in demand as a presenter. You will reap the rewards of those communicators who connect in a powerful way.

Technology Tool For Presentations

One of the tools many presenters use today is Microsoft PowerPoint. If it is used properly, it can make a great impact. Used poorly, it leads to the old “Death By PowerPoint” that has plagued corporations.

Recently I got my hands on a new remote control that is the best I’ve ever seen. It is small enough to fit in your hand, does the normal advancing of slides and even has a “blank screen” command (like the letter “B” in PowerPoint).

This remote, from Keyspan at, is the first I’ve seen to also control audio. This is more important than ever as we are blending more video and audio components into our presentations. I’ve used this in a variety of situations and it has worked flawlessly. It also has a range of up to 100 ft. Powered by 2 AA batteries, you can carry extra fresh batteries with you to avoid the challenges of power outages.

Another nice feature is the USB connector can be slid into the unit for carrying. This helps prevent loss which can be a nightmare when you’re on the road presenting.

To compare the Presentation Remote Pro with other devices I put together a video for you on YouTube. You can view it at: and see a comparison. This can help if you’re in the market for a new device and want an objective opinion on what is available.

The Presentation Remote Pro retails for $79.99 and is available on their website and through retailers. It is a good tool to examine if you’re making presentations and want to connect with your audience more effectively.

Terry Brock is an international marketing coach and columnist who helps businesses market more effectively, leveraging technology. He shows busy professionals how to squeeze more out of their days using time-honored rules and practical technology tools. He can be reached at 407-363-0505, by e-mail at or through his website at

Copyright © 2007, Terry Brock, All Rights Reserved Internationally. No portion may be reprinted or used in any way without prior written permission

Friday, August 10, 2007

How To Get Business - Push vs. Pull

How To Get Business: Push Vs. Pull

By Terry L. Brock

Yesterday I had two different calls, from two different clients, in two different countries, yet the message was the same. “Terry, how can I get more business?” Both people were experienced business professionals who had done a lot in their respective fields. Yet, both were in what we call “a dry spell” and needed to bounce back---soon!

So, how can you get more business? This is the effervescent question every entrepreneur is asking. Often in my work as a marketing coach, I hear people saying something like, “I have this idea and believe we need to tell the market about it. How can I get that message out there?”

This is a noble idea, but I think it is often jumping to step 3 rather before steps 1 and 2 are securely in place. Let me explain.

To get business, we often talk about a “push vs. pull strategy” in marketing. Do you “push” your idea out to people telling them about it, sending out lots of advertising, etc. etc. Or do you “pull” them into you with enticing offers based on what they are looking for? If you’re a regular reader of these articles, you probably know I strongly favor using encouragement, enticement and persuasion vs. force, sheer lung power and “pushiness.”

I’ve always felt it best to find the market which wants something and then provide that something they want. Dan Kennedy, a legendary marketing coach, says he always wants to open a restaurant for a hungry, even starving crowd with lots of money. That is the key! Find that hungry crowd that has money and then open a restaurant. I’d even go Dan one further and advocate running through the crowd, pen and notepad in hand, asking them what kind of food they’d like today. Then dash back to the kitchen and have your cooks make up the best, mouth-watering menu they’ve ever experienced. Not only will your “starving customers” get a meal they’ll be raving about it and want to come back for more!

Here are some concrete ideas you can implement to get business:

Study The Market. This is the tough part. We have to be objective like white-coat-wearing scientists who don’t care about their own personal feelings but check what the market is saying. Think of yourself as a doctor who is examining a patient for what is wrong. Your own personal feelings and ideas are nice, but what really matters is what the objective, reality-based results say. Find what the market has and needs. Look for gapping holes. Fred Smith saw a big hole in the market for overnight delivery---then came up with the idea of Federal Express (now FedEx Kinkos). Tom Monaghan, the founder of Dominoes Pizza saw a need for quick, fast delivery of pizzas. Find that need out there.

Use Technology To Investigate. Today we have the Internet to help with research. Use tools like WordTracker, ( ), and Google’s new Hot Trends, ( to find what a lot of people are interested in right now. This way you’re not just relying on your own feelings and opinions. Find what others are saying. This is also a great way for parents to know about “what’s hot” with their teens. Visiting Hot Trends is a good way to stay up to date for busy people!

Do Your Own Primary Research. Find out what real people are saying. Conduct a non-scientific random sampling of your own customers. You can also survey others ( --- good tool here) as a way to find answers to common questions.

Do The “Flag Pole” Test. This is one of the best I’ve found. The old phrase of “Raise it up the flag pole and see if anyone salutes” works in the real world. Try several ideas. Carefully track which ideas sell. The old marketer’s credo of “test, test and re-test” works here. Successful marketers never stop testing. I remember in Market Research classes in Business School they told us the importance of “testing in Peoria” to find good products. People can say they want Blue Widgets in your surveys. However, if they buy Red Widgets in the store in Peoria with real dollars, that is what the successful marketer notes for reference. Put on your white coat, market researcher, and be objective. Measure. Test. Evaluate. Yes, it’s hard work and would be easier to set back and speculate on what you “think” the market wants. However, your bottom line will be better having implemented scientific testing and measurement.

Gain Quantum Competence. You have to be really, really good at what you offer. Don’t just give a book report. Get the training, education and credentials necessary. Develop the products that are sound. You have to have a great product, not just great ideas. Continually upgrade and test your skills and product knowledge. Without a sound product, all the market research you do is just theory.

Don’t Throw Away Those Gut Instincts. Malcolm Gladwell’s book, Blink, tells us about how we judge what is going to work. Sometimes we can have that “gut instinct” but it usually is successful only after lots of real-world experience. Keep testing and trying new ideas. Some don’t work. In fact, most of our initial ideas won’t work. However, keep working and massaging them coupled with real-world testing, and you improve your odds on getting what the market wants.

These steps can help you get more business. It is not easy. I can’t offer you a smile and a handshake along with a simple formula to get more business. But, if you’re willing to pay the price, put in the hard thinking work, and do the testing, you’ll find what the market wants. Then produce that “meal” for your “hungry restaurant customers” and they’ll love their first meal, they’ll keep coming back for more, and they’ll tell their friends. Then you’ll have lots of business and I’ll have to write my next column on “How to handle long lines at your restaurant.”


Terry Brock is an international marketing coach and columnist who helps businesses market more effectively, leveraging technology. He shows busy professionals how to squeeze more out of their days using time-honored rules and practical technology tools. He can be reached at 407-363-0505, by e-mail at or through his website at

Copyright © 2007, Terry Brock, All Rights Reserved Internationally. No portion may be reprinted or used in any way without prior written permission