Dear Competitor,

Dear Competitor,

By: Shelly Kramer
March 31, 2010
Woman Stomping Out the Competition

Squish 'em like a bug, baby

Dear Competitor,

I couldn’t sleep last night and found myself thinking of you. I love competition, both for myself and for my clients. It keeps me thinking (which I enjoy), on my toes (good, because I’m short) and adaptable (which I find, perversely, fun). And while I was thinking of you, I felt compelled to write, just to make sure we’re on the same page on a few things.

And, of course, because I’m nice. And I worry about your business and how it’s going to measure up against me and my clients’ businesses. And just because I’m so doggone considerate, here are my suggestions for your success in 2010 and beyond.

Your Website
Please don’t change it. Not now, and not any time soon. Especially if it was built more than two or three years ago. I’m sure it’s totally up-to-date, optimized for search, well-researched and written with regard to your target audience and just out there working its little tail off for you on a daily basis. Give yourself bonus points if it’s built in Flash or has cool things like music that blares as soon as someone opens the site and or video that starts playing instantly. Those are both such attractive things and users really, really love them. Nevermind effective out the wazoo.

Google Alerts
No matter what anyone says, it really doesn’t matter what people are saying about you or your brand, so cluttering up your email box with pesky alerts from Google is just a waste of time. Plus, you know who you are and what you do, and if anyone has any questions, they can ask you, right? But listening to the social media space and all those Internet crazies, nah. Don’t do it!!

Search Smirch
All these people going on and on and on about “search” and how important it is to show up in search – which means that Google thing, I guess. Lord, but I get sick of hearing about that, too. Well, ignore ‘em. Seriously. When I want to search something, I do it the old-fashioned way, I dig out the Yellow Pages. I see you nodding your head. You do it, too, dontcha? Well, there’s no reason to expect your customers or prospective customers to do it any differently, right? After all, if people weren’t using those doggone Yellow Pages books, they wouldn’t still be delivering them to your front door, now would they? So ignore all that blather about search – people will find you the way they always have. You can count on it.

Social Media
Listen to the people! All the people who say that social media is just a big, fat, time suck are right! Nobody in his right mind cares what people are Tweetering about what they had for breakfast, what someone else is “fanning” on Facebook, or where they are checking in on a daily basis through that FourCircle thing – or whatever the heck it’s called. And for sure, that geolocation stuff blows and is so not worth a second thought. Who needs to know where anyone else is throughout the course of a day? What possible good could come from that, anyway? Never mind that Blippy thing, where people tell other people all what they’re buying and where they’re buying it, for Pete’s sake. How lame is that? Where’s the ROI in all that nonsense, anyway? Time suck. Money suck. No way, Jose. Not for me.

Mobile Marketing – What?
Sure, I use my cell phone and text my husband now and again, but that’s the exception rather than the rule. Heck, I can just call him. And when he doesn’t answer, I leave him a voicemail. And of course he listens to it (it’d be rude otherwise). It’s just what you do. Call people, they answer, you talk. All these crazy people talking about mobile marketing and using text messages as part of a marketing strategy don’t know a hill of beans about good marketing tactics – no one will stand for that garbage. Plus, who needs a coupon on the cell phone – I get mine in my daily newspaper, dude. Never mind how nutty it is to read all that shiggedy about people actually designing stuff – like websites – to be viewed on the dang cellphone. How crazy is that? Nobody does that stuff. Heck, I wait until I’m home and in front of my desktop before getting on the Internet – and everyone else who has a lick of sense does too, don’t you know it?

So, there you have it. I’ve saved you a bunch of time, expense and headaches by doing all the homework for you and sharing my findings. Just keep on keeping on, doing business the way you always have, and things will be just fine. After all, no one likes change and it’s a pain in the neck to learn new things and do things differently. It’s kind of like watering grass in the desert. Just doesn’t make sense.

Now does it?

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  • Shelly Kramer

    Thx, FF. Clearly, I was in a silly mood.

  • fjfonseca

    Amazing read! Really!

  • dianaadams

    Love it Love it Love it. I agree with Fernando, this is a great read. Another thing I always enjoy in your posts are the pictures. This one cracks me up. As funny as this post is, there is a lot of insight in here. I'm sure there are some people out there that still believe these things.

    I can't believe you even remember what the Yellow Pages are. Haha! Other than the 2 days a year I throw those books in the recycling bin, I never remember it. 😉 Thanks for another fun read.

  • ShellyKramer

    Thanks Diana. I toss my Yellow Pages as soon as they arrive, too, and always feel bad about what a waste the whole thing is.

    And you know how I labor over pics .. it is the hardest part of blogging for me (am I a moron or WHAT?) … so knowing that you enjoy makes me smile.

    Thanks, tootsie, for the read and for the comment 🙂

  • ShellyKramer

    Thanks FF. I was in a silly mood today and had fun writing in. Sometimes just as cathartic as a good, old-fashioned rant.

  • dianaadams

    I spend a lot of time choosing images for my posts too. Sometimes it takes longer than writing the post itself. That's what we get for being perfectionists. LOL

  • ShellyKramer

    That makes me feel better, D. I really do spend waaaaaay too long doing it, but it matters. I'll take perfectionist any day. <linking arms, preparing to skip away>

  • I agree with you 1000% and am hoping I can help all my competitors as much as possible by sending them to your article today!

    You know, the yellow pages are the the bomb for competitive advertising….why, I have a stack of about 5 books sitting right here next to my desk not too far from my trusty rotary phone.

    You're awesome, Shelly! Oh, and don't you and Diana go skipping too far away without me, because I only need a couple more hours to find the perfect image to go with my Friday post.

  • I just love you and Shelly both, Coree…you women sure know how to share~! Wow, such insight…such TRANSPARENCY. I adore you in bubble wrap.

  • What a sassy, savvy strategist you are! Love this twist. Have to confess that I skipped the intro and went straight to the first subhead. When I read “Don't change your website,” I was all “WHAT?!” So there. You got me. Well done! And attention-getting. Great photo, too.

  • ShellyKramer

    Thanks, Kat! Glad you enjoyed :))))

  • ShellyKramer

    Thanks, Coree. Always fun to make people laugh, you especially! And we would never skip away without you – where would the fun be in that, girrrrl? Thanks for the read, and for the comment.

  • ShellyKramer

    Adore ya back, Janet! Thanks so much :)))

  • mmangen

    Shelly – love it! Was thinking I could use this as a direct mail piece because people still send those too, right? Of course, I'll have to find someone with a typewriter to type it all up for me.

    As always, love your humor!


  • ShellyKramer

    Oh, now Michelle. People do still use direct mail – and effectively even. But the typewriter – brilliant! Absolutely brilliant. Why didn't I think of that????

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  • Great post – thanks Liz for directing me here.

    I might suggest to my competitors to do the same, and add that they should always, always take it on face value that when the paper directories offer them an ad on their new online directory – because they know what works, don't they (they still publish the YP and here in the UK the Thomson Local still exist – although you can't really use it any longer as a door stop, for some odd reason it is getter thinner and thinner).

    And whenever the phone company calls them to offer them a new ad on their brand new enhanced online business directory, they should do so immediately. Double digit sales results guaranteed! (They should know, don't they, land-line phone companies are very, very modern – at least BT here in the UK with their BT “exchange” programs seems to be)

    Karin H (Keep It Simple Sweetheart, specially in business)

  • davidsoxman

    Thanks Shelly but why does everyone think this is funny?

  • davidsoxman

    Thanks Shelly but why does everyone think this is funny?

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  • Anonymous

    What people say about you on Social Media doesn’t matter, just like not feeding your children doesn’t matter. In fact, I actually think feeding children and SM Monitoring are illegal in at least 13 states. But Canada probably allows both of them!

  • Anonymous


    I agree COMPLETELY! Children should not have to be fed more than a couple of
    times a week. And only in states that start with the letter “C.” And those
    damn Canadians – you never know what they’ll letcha get by with!!

  • Great post Shell. You are a rock star, couldn’t be said any better.

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