This week’s Idea: This week’s idea is a lot of hot air!

with Neil Godin

Whoaa. Around a curve, and just over that little hill…a car stopper. What is it? Up close and personal (maybe 50 feet above the ground) – it’s the ReMax hot air balloon. Sure I’ve seen it before. But that didn’t stop me from sucking in a huge breath – and saying “wow” out loud – when I saw it again.

My iPhone photo of the ReMax balloon: A stunning example of outdoor advertising.

My iPhone photo of the ReMax balloon: A stunning example of outdoor advertising.

Why is this form of outdoor advertising so effective? Because it’s show biz. It’s an “attraction.” It’s compelling. In fact, you can’t fail to slow down; look up, and gawk.

Your call to action

In doing the work I love most (helping businesses in trouble get turned around), we often use eye-catching  outdoor promotional strategies. These turnaround clients can’t afford hot air balloons, but it’s amazing what you can do with inexpensive options. Here’s an example: A furniture store that still sold waterbed mattresses was going under. One solution: fill a waterbed mattress with helium, paint “SALE” on both sides – and raise it high above the store for everyone to see (as they drove the freeway that ran right past the store). That helium balloon – plus a 100-foot banner along a fence in front of the store, festooned (is that really a word?) with colorful balloons – produced a complete turnaround in less than 30 days.

Are these ideas just a lot of hot air? Or could you use banners and balloons to boost your biz?

See you next week.


Ps – Once again, if you know of a small business owner who could use coaching in marketing and sales (or a range of other topics), would you please forward this message to them…

The people running the BC Government’s Micro Business Training program have received funding for several hundred more small business owners. This program provides $1500 worth of private, one on one, business coaching assistance at no charge. However, it is hard to qualify. One key qualification, strange as it seems, is that they must not have completed a post-secondary education program. And, their business has to be very small, with fewer than five employees. I’m one of a large number of coaches involved in the program, and I provide six hours of live or telephone coaching, supported by a collection of reference materials). If you know of someone who would benefit, please ask them to call me at 604.888.4570 or email me at Many thanks!

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