Another example of great marketing

FREE COFFEE?

About 5 months ago, John Wall at Ronin Marketeer made me aware of a “Java Beta Test” that Joffrey’s was doing.  Joffrey‘s is an online tea & coffee company that had a great idea that I wrote of earlier.  They offered free samples of their coffee to bloggers and had them write about the product.  Risky venture, but not if your product is at the caliber of Joffrey’s.  Their Jamaica Me Crazy was fantastic!  Great strategy and great innovative technique to allow multiple bloggers to get in on the action.  At last count they have over 1,500 blogs they’ve involved.

GREAT FOLLOW-THROUGH

I admit that I had every intention of buying a bag of Jamaica Me Crazy…but you can fill in the rest of the story. Life just comes too fast some days.  So, jump start to yesterday.  Five months after this beta test and I get an email from Joffrey’s alerting me to their new site and to check it out.  They never invaded my email box after the initial experiment.  They backed off unlike many others who call you 2,000 times after a whitepaper download.  But they followed through on the contacts they made during their Java Beta Test and discreetly reminded everyone they were still around, had a new site design and indirectly brought business back around to their site.  Plus they offered a 25% discount to me and my readers.  Details below…

To make it even more satisfying, I wrote a letter back to the email issuer, Adam, Director of Digital Strategy with Pierson Grant, who is the strategist team for Joffrey’s.  I wrote my compliments…and got a reply within 15 minutes or so.

We need more companies like Joffrey’s and Pierson Grant – for people who know how to use the great responsibility of social media and who do it well.

Once again, my coffee mug is raised in their honor!  Now, here is the email I received with that special offer:

Coffee Trends in the Blogosphere:

Results from Joffrey’s Coffee & Tea Company’s survey based on 1,000 bloggers:

  • Average age of Java Beta Tester:  approximately 31.5 years old

Coffee preferences:

  • 93% prefer regular, 7% prefer decaf
  • 59% prefer traditional coffee, 41% prefer flavored coffee
  • Cups of coffee per day:
    • 1-2 = 45%
    • 2-4 = 35%
    • 4+ = 20%
  • Sweetener and cream preferences:
    • Cream + sweetener = 50%
    • Black = 25%
    • Cream only = 19%
    • Sweetener only = 6%

SO, for you coffee lovers, use this code:  DCWEBLAUNCH085 and receive 25% off your order through Joffrey’s.  As the kind folks at MarketingOverCoffee.com like to say, “Enjoy the coffee!”

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How 4 Hours of Work Can Make up for a Week of Vacation

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How 4 Hours of Work Can Make Up for a Week of Vacation 

One of my favorite sites, The Daily Saint, posted a great subject– especially for me since I’m on vacation.  Thanks Mike for providing this timely idea:  Most of us like vacation.  Most of us do not like the volume of work that greets us upon return from vacation.  It might explain whyAmericans take less vacation time than those in other developing countries.  Consider the post-vacation greeting from:

  • Hundreds of emails…waiting for your reply.
  • Dozens of voice mails…demanding some resolution.
  • Tens of projects…each needing attention.
  • Piles of paperwork…all arguing for space on your desk.

All of this can be pretty daunting but four simple hours of work can make up for it all.   Here’s a plan for tackling your work and still enjoying vacation:

  1. Go into work for one morning during your vacation.  I suggest a mid-vacation time (Wednesdays are perfect).
  2. Dress casual. It will feel exotic and why not?  Enjoy the moment.
  3. Bring some java.  I know, you’d rather cash in on the free coffee that work provides but go ahead and treat yourself to an expensive cup of tea of coffee.  Look at it as an enhancement to your work-flow. 
  4. Process your work.  Plain and simple- dive in and get into the zone.

What are the effects of this simple, four hour blitz of work?  First, your vacation will thank you for it because you won’t be stressing over the work you imagine piling up.  Second, your work will thank you for it when you return.  Third and most importantly, you know that you’ll be working smarter than the rest of the bunch.  This is not so much about competition but about finding a way to ease stress and capitalize on down time.  Go for it!

 

Email, Gmail, and other Focus Issues

Gmail

Last week I responded to a post from Mike St. Pierre at The Daily Saint.  I was honored when I found the next day his follow-up post was in response to my comment.   “The best of intentions leave many of us guilty of over-socializing. Before you know it the next actions you had scheduled to complete that day were cut in half and all because you simply lost focus. So, how can we maintain focus during the day?”And his response post is here to that question.  Thanks Mike!   On another note – what do those of you use at work vs. home – are you able to sync up your Outlook with Gmail successfully?  And what do you do to keep the focus away from putting out fires on email all day? 

 

Put off today what you can do tomorrow…

Email inboxIf you look around the GTD world, if you listen in to board rooms, conference rooms, at the water cooler, on phone conversations to spouses and on and on you’ll hear the same groan – email.  Email hell, email jail, inbox/sinbox; it’s all the same.  Email is the new voicemail.  We’ve made ourselves available in an all too easy fashion.  Despite our best attempts at a great day, email is there waiting for us at work in the morning with an evil grin.  During the day, best laid plans to keep the inbox clean never come to fruition (save for an issue with your IT/IS department).  We can obsess about keeping the inbox at zero all we want but the fact remains it is a futile fight. I am happy to report that on numerous occasions while implementing GTD that I have been able to put things into context and I have been able to clean out my inbox on a Friday afternoon (and sometimes other days as well).  But the best of us still back slide at times.  It’s inevitable.Numerous websites have offered up a few tips like answering your email 2 times a day and actually auto-replying to all emails that you only answer at this time or that time.  That’s a difficult proposition for those who don’t have laid out schedules that start and end at the same time each day.  It may work for some – it just doesn’t work for me.Over the weekend I came across another thought about email.  Actually it’s part of a 32 page e-book from Mark McGuinness called Time Management for Creative People.   Mark has many great thoughts adapted from Getting Things Done, but he adds his own including how to focus better at work and how to “ring-fence” your creative time so that you save a special time of the day for when your creative juices are at their highest.  But one of my favorite points is simply this – don’t answer your email until the following day.  By waiting one day you allow yourself the luxury of not becoming a slave to email.  By waiting one day you know the next day how much email you need to reply to and can schedule yourself accordingly.  When you have answered that last email a sense of accomplishment should reside within you for the day’s achievements regardless of how many emails you may need to answer the next day.  Mark does point out the need to talk with your boss about this, but for those who have understanding employers this may make you not only a creative individual, but an accomplished one as well.