11 Ads To Make You Stop And Laugh

11 Ads To Make You Stop And Laugh

Science has proven that when an individual laughs, it releases endorphins into the body causing a natural “feel-good” chemical to spread. To stand out amongst the daily noise of 40,000 commercial messages, 121 emails, and 300 million new facebook photos posted every single day, you truly have to be a bright spot in your prospect’s day.

Studies have shown that superstar salespeople spend 60% of their time focused on building rapport with a prospect, way more than the average sales person. What better way to gain their trust than to release a natural “feel-good” chemical and make them laugh! I happened to be searching LinkedIn last week and I came across a fantastic LinkedIn group called “Brilliant Ads.” I took the most hilarious ones just for you because…

  1. Seeing these massively successful campaigns will give you some good creative muse for your next marketing campaign.
  2. I’ve been using these pictures as a sales tool to send to my potential clients to break the ice, crack a good joke, and win some rapport through text message, facebook chat, and email. (I even put #8 in a proposal right before the pricing to soften them before the close).
  3. Because I find these hilarious and I want you to enjoy them as well

How can you do something like these ads in your next campaign…


The Funniest Insurance Ad Ever. Can you create a picture and caption like this for your company?


A picture is worth a thousand words. Can you capture the perfect picture that puts your buyer in urgency, pain, or laughter? This Diamond company did all three.


Can you use the holidays to post something seasonally funny? Welcome to the scariest day of the year…


Educate your buyer about why you’re better than your competition! Even something as simple as this, highly effective! (Notice how many likes this got on LinkedIn, almost double what all the other posts received).


Can you create something that’s innovative and grabs attention? How many employees do you have in the field? Did you ever consider using their cars as billboards? #guerillamarketing


Can you come up with a creative place to put your ads where people haven’t seen them before and find it clever?


McDonalds took thinking out of the box to a new level. What out of the box thinking can you create in your marketing mediums?


HILARIOUS. This is the one I’ve been using in my emails and proposals to potential clients… “P.S. I saw this ad a couple days ago on LinkedIn and found it amusing. I think it’s a great analogy of what our work will do together… All you need is [insert what you will give them] and it changes everything. ;)”


What clever merch can you place your company information on? I’ve been keeping this stick of chapstick for years because it tastes amazing and the provider that put their information on it has been on the top of my mind years later because of it. Where can you place your information where people will continue to see it for years to come?


Who is your target market? Can you speak in their language? Jacoby&Meyer knew millennials liked emoji’s and this campaign has been a huge hit for them.


Hah. Too funny. Be clever and remember laughter is a great way to gain rapport with clients. The difference between superstar salespeople and mediocre is their ability to build a lasting relationship.

If you’re looking to spice up your marketing material, or find more compelling ways to close more sales download our chapter that changes lives from our New York Times Best Seller The Ultimate Sales Machine. Or if you’d like to speak to someone about growing your company faster, better, smarter, sign up for a 22 minute strategy call with one of our growth specialists.


Love and light,

Amanda Holmes
CEO -Chet Holmes International




P.S. Have YOU ever put together a clever campaign? Tell me about it below in the comments box!

20 Inspirational Sales & Marketing Quotes to Honor Chet Holmes

Today marks the three-year anniversary of the passing of our founder, my father, Chet Holmes. I could have written a lengthy blog post in his honor for the occasion, but it occurred to me that in life my father was never the longwinded type. Certainly there were events where he spoke on stage for upwards of ten hours, but he did so only because he had so much knowledge to share–there wasn’t a wasted breath. “Straight to the point” was truly his modus operandi. So Instead I’ve decided to keep it short and to the point. Today we celebrate Chet Holmes’ life, his work, and his pithy wisdom by collecting his very BEST quotes.

In celebration of my father’s life, here are a couple of free videos for you to enjoy:

The Exact Sales Script Chet Used to Get to the Most Successful People in the World

Now that I’ve shared these with you, I’d love to know, what’s your favorite inspiring quote? Leave it in the comments section below.

With love,

Amanda Holmes

Make the holiday season jolly for your business revenue

Make the holiday season jolly for your business revenue

Companies across the country are making plans for their holiday promotions and determining the strategies they will use to draw in customers during the year's busiest shopping period.

Companies across the country are making plans for their holiday promotions and determining the strategies they will use to draw in customers during the year’s busiest shopping period.

The weather has started to cool down and people are packing away their summer clothes in exchange for scarves and sweaters, meaning that fall is upon us and winter is knocking on the door. While it may not seem like it’s time, preparations are already underway for the 2014 holiday season. Companies across the country are making plans for their holiday promotions and determining the strategies they will use to draw in customers during the year’s busiest shopping period.

As a small business owner, getting a jump start now on prepping your operations for the end of the year can reap huge benefits. Taking the time to develop a brand positioning strategy that includes how you want to market to existing and prospective clients can keep customers coming in throughout the holidays and after the season is over.

Holiday sales expected to increase
Over the past few years, sales from holiday purchases have been steadily increasing. This trend is expected to continue this year, as estimates from the National Retail Federation reveal that a 4.1 percent growth in retail sales is anticipated throughout November and December, accounting for a total of $616.9 billion.

The NRF points to increasing consumer optimism and recent job growth as the main reasons for higher holiday sales.

“Retailers could see a welcome boost in holiday shopping, giving some companies the shot in the arm they need after a volatile first half of the year and an uneventful summer,” said NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay.

Businesses can get piece of holiday sales pie
While the boost in holiday spending will be seen at larger retailers, businesses should know that they can also take a significant share of the anticipated sales growth. All it takes is a strong plan and solid preparation.

Entrepreneur offers several ways in which smaller enterprises can bring in customers and revenue this holiday season, including reaching out to existing patrons before the shopping frenzy starts. Through email, social media or more traditional marketing forms, you can remind your clients that your company is there to meet their holiday needs.

Additionally, the source suggests promoting your enterprise’s smaller size by promising customers more personalized service and experiences, which is something they may not always get when buying their holiday items from larger companies. By letting current and future patrons know their business is valuable and will be handled with personalized care can draw them in and keep them throughout the holiday season and even long after.

Having a strong online presence is also key for the upcoming busy shopping period, according to Deloitte. Going digital is now extremely important for businesses, and maintaining a website, social media profiles and Internet marketing strategies can increase your company’s customer base and revenues.

Deloitte found that more than 50 percent of holiday sales will be influenced by customers going digital, meaning that you can see ultimate business success during the upcoming months by developing your brand’s online activity.

Managing finances is a crucial small business skill

Managing finances is a crucial small business skill

There are many things that business owners must manage within their operations. One of the most important is finances.

There are many things that business owners must manage within their operations. One of the most important is finances.

There are many things that business owners must manage within their operations, the most important of which is finances. Money that flows into and out of a company needs to be carefully maintained. Even the tiniest of slip ups can cost businesses big time. Additionally, smaller enterprises don’t have the same financial resources as their larger counterparts, so taking close care of cash flow is vital for small business success.

Fortunately, there are ways that, as an owner, you can expertly manage your company’s finances. Whether it’s applying for business loans or adopting certain practices and procedures to save money, your organization’s cash flow can remain steady and grow with the right strategies.

Loans continue to grow among smaller firms
Loans are a great way for small businesses to get the money they need to keep their operations running. The recently released Dun & Bradstreet Credibility Corp and Pepperdine Private Capital Access Index revealed that smaller companies are increasingly applying for loans. Of the 1,251 smaller enterprises that responded, 58.4 percent applied for bank loans in the second quarter of this year, and 54 percent of that group were able to secure the financing.

More small businesses are looking to obtain loans in the coming months as well. The report revealed that approximately 28 percent of companies plan to apply for loans this quarter. These results show that many organizations are relying on financing options to propel their operations forward.

Money saving tips can do the trick
Not all businesses need loans. There are many that can keep their cash flow going without reaching out for financing. While loans are a great option for companies that need them, as an owner you can also adopt money-saving strategies to curb excess spending and keep finances in order.

There are many moving parts within a small business that typically require special software programs to run efficiently. Mashable recommends that you looking at using free or cheaper technology to get the job done. For example, using Google for email as well as calendar management can be done for free or at minimal cost. There are also customer relationship management platforms that can be downloaded for free, such as Zoho CRM and Insightly.

Additionally, the Internet is an extremely effective tool for small businesses as it gives you access to a wide range of materials to learn more about leading a small enterprise. For instance, you can search for a certified business consultant in your area to get advice on how to manage your company more efficiently.

Mashable also suggests handling marketing your business in-house whenever possible. Outsourcing this particular task can not only be expensive, but it gives you less control over your brand positioning strategy as well. Bringing it back into your company allows you to carefully manage how you are reaching potential customers.

With a little know how and determination, you can expertly oversee your small business’ finances to ensure your operations will continue to grow in the future.

Four Ways Fact-Finding Plus Analysis Equals Big Results

Four Ways Fact-Finding Plus Analysis Equals Big Results

storm brewing for business ownersAmid the uncertainty of recessions, post-recessions, tax reform, healthcare, mobile technology, off-shoring, re-shoring, local, state and federal elections… Business leaders today find themselves at the mercy of an ever-changing marketplace, shaped by evolving technology, sophisticated consumers and an unsteady economy. Compounding that relentless progression are information outlets that constantly pump out new data. If business owners stop to pay attention to one, they risk falling behind in the others.

As a research director who’s equally passionate about helping businesses grow as I am about learning and harnessing the power of information, I see business owners struggling with this every day. Very few of my clients, large or small, have a formal function set up to access the right information at the right time, even though that’s the first and easiest step. The solution does not have to be complicated, but as we all know, taking the first step is the hardest part. What I evangelize are scale-able research functions that can assist with day-to-day operations as well as inform long-view strategy. 

News for business ownersHere are four general areas where research makes a positive impact:

1– Connect with customers on their turf. 87% of customers are not engaged (loyal, attached, Etc.) with the companies with which they do business. And yet, engaged customers deliver a 23% premium over average customers in share of wallet, profitability, revenue and relationship growth1.

One of the first things I establish with my clients at Empire Research Group is what they know about their customers. I ask them what they’ve heard from their long-standing customers, or to think about conversations they’ve had with their business peers. That gets the wheels turning, and it’s a great place to start compiling what you already know – or what you think you know. But imagine: instead of constantly being on the receiving end of that information, what if you could respond to that interaction with a fact that would really blow their socks off? Such a comeback is a powerful demonstration that you’re listening, you’re engaged, and you’re a partner who understands what they need.

On the other end of the scale, I hear from start-ups who are taking lots of shots in the dark as they begin to navigate their marketplace. With those clients, I help them begin to compile a repository of data and the analysis to go along with it. With hard facts in front of you, the lights will come on over the targets. You’ll have a clear line of site on the intersection where your ideas meet the market’s desires.

2 – Quit reinventing the wheel. Whatever you’re trying to do within your business, whether it’s attracting top level talent, making employees more productive, boosting sales, or improving logistics, the best practices have already been outlined somewhere. Information overload may have its downfalls, but having a treasure trove of pre-tested ideas at our fingertips is one of the benefits. Meaning don’t waste your invaluable time, energy and effort creating your own answer when the answers are not only already out there but have been proven time and time again.

3 – See the future coming with enough time to pivot and roll out preparations.

As the list of things to worry about has grown, likewise has the depth and quality of our news shrunk. 76% of small business owners name the effectiveness of government leaders as their #2 concern for 2014 (right behind health care benefits/costs at 77%)2. And yet the average political sound bite is now 9 seconds3. Stack a few sound bites together, and that’s the average depth of our news segments. That’s fine for the casual viewer – not for the competitive businessperson planning for their future livelihood. Business leaders need a comprehensive, actionable analysis of the macroeconomic trends that will affect their business.

4 – Know what the competition is doing. Why wait until you’re losing business to figure out what the other guys are doing better? We’re not just talking about reverse engineering the Coca-Cola formula; a simple competitive intelligence program would monitor the public output of direct competitors as well as other companies in the wider marketplace. I’ve helped start such programs for companies, and the first (and hardest) step is figuring out which companies or press outlets to monitor. Technology helps with the rest. No matter what system is set up for collection, though, the real value isn’t so much in what is found out today, but in combining that information over time to determine patterns and likely outcomes.

Highest and Best Use

A McKinsey survey found that almost half of executives think they don’t spend enough time directing the strategic direction of their company4. Why? They’re stuck doing other things. For example, a survey of small business owners found they spend more than 20% of their time doing back office work like bookkeeping5. That means they’re lucky to be able to scan articles that cover their own industry once in awhile – asking them to carve out time to read about other industries can be a nearly impossible order. And yet, 

“Performing regular analysis is guaranteed to yield those key data points or trends that inform strategy at its deepest levels and attract and retain valuable repeat buyers.” 

Whether that research function is an outsourced consultant, a dedicated employee or a few hours sequestered on the calendar each week to review Google Alerts, the modern business owner will make harnessing that information overload into a priority that will truly allow them to work smarter, not harder.

by Allison Porch, Director of Research and Senior Project Director for Empire Research Group, a division of Chet Holmes® International™


1 Global Customer Service Barometer, American Express and Echo, 2013
2 Small Business Owner Report, Fall 2013, Bank of America
3 The Incredible Shrinking Sound Bite, NPR, 2011
4 Making Time Management The Organization’s Priority, McKinsey Quarterly, 2013
5 Survey of Small Business Owners, ADP Research Institute, 2010

9 Killer Ways to Break Ahead of the Competition

9 Killer Ways to Break Ahead of the Competition

iStock_ValueFiguring out how to deliver true differentiation and VALUE in the marketplace starts with being known as the educator. In essence, acting as a “consultant,” who educates the marketplace on what they didn’t know, that they should know, about how current trends are influencing businesses.

There are very few resources out there today that do just that. You will want one that fuses your marketing and sales efforts together wielding a highly professional, powerful and consistent approach that provides your entire marketplace with an undeniable reason to buy. Ideally, you want to be seen as the expert in your industry, someone your prospective clients seek out to do business with. By sharing engaging, value-packed information with your audience you capture trust and credibility that earns you permission to present your solution, be it a product or service. Ultimately, you are solving not selling.

One I’d like to bring to your attention, as an example, is a leading-edge education-based marketing product Chet Holmes’ created called The Core Story. This one in particular is the ultimate strategic positioning tool, combining the power of data, research and your brand’s unique story to create a highly credible, audience-targeted sales and marketing tool. Best of all, it units your sales and marketing teams under one strategic and tactical initiative you can hold them accountable with to grow your business.

Over the years, I (personally) have coached hundreds of clients on the execution of their Core Story into their market, and it usually comes down to these 9 killer elements that always deliver maximum results.  Tools like The Core Story must have a clearly identifiable structure and set of elements that sets it apart from all other types of marketing presentations or studies. The most identifiable elements are as follows:

1.         Establish your educational based marketing and sales “core” activity repository founded on well-sourced market motivating research.

2.         Research is chock full of statistics, trended over time, that deliver new information to the audience creating a “WOW” through contrasting and comparing the data.

3.         Information being shared is focused on the prospect—not on you.

4.         Title leads with pain, “The Five Most Dangerous Trends Facing ______Today”

5.         Content is loaded with bad news because bad news motivates.

6.         This new information becomes the “core” of all marketing efforts—messaging, visuals, communications, web content, advertisements, webinars, social media, literature, etc.

7.         Research hinges on market data rather than product data (market data is much more motivational).

8.         Data sets up the buying criteria—positioning you to gain permission to sell.

9.         Set this strategy as a definitive sales methodology your entire team is trained in to make widespread, consistent impact on your audience, which increases your brand standing and conversion rates.

Make sure whatever you create is a superior marketing and audience access vehicle; meaning it is neither a sales, nor features and benefits piece. This means that while the elements of a tool, such as this Core Story approach, may expose certain benefits they will not be about “sell and tell”.  The biggest mistake I see businesses making over and over again is that the key data points that slaughter the client’s competition and position the client as the only possible solution are not based on notable research studies. And if they are wrong you run the risk of instantly discrediting yourself. Now you will never get the opportunity to sell.

The fact is if the center of the sales model is your Core Story then all of the other parts of the sales model must adapt. If a Core Story is considered without a full sales model, it cannot succeed. When the two pieces come together correctly, your entire field of prospects grows dramatically and the business closes more of them. The increased number of prospects, times the increased closing ratio, results in massive revenue gains.

By Chris Steely, VP Elite Consulting at Chet Holmes International

extra bonusEmpire Research Group Releases Education-based Market Research and Content Product Lines 2/1/14

Relevant research that drives your sales and marketing messages is mandatory to compete in today’s competitive market. 

Successful companies use it to ensure their marketing dollars get maximum impact. This is now available through customized research programs that drive business growth.

Target Market Research Analysis:  20 questions/35+ pages of market data to laser focus on your audience’s wants, needs and pains.  This intelligence is at the “core” of your communications to WOW your audience by focusing on them, not you, and so much more!

Introductory Pricing starting at $3995. Get yours by contacting cynthiapowers@empireresearchgroup.com or  VISIT www.empireresearchgroup.com to request a free consultation.