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Learning How To Build A Business Blog From The Houston Astros

By Cheval John

November 3rd, 2017

On a normal day, going to downtown houston from the northline train station would be a breeze.

Today was not one of those days because the city of houston hosted a parade for their hometown team, Astros, who won their first World Series (WS) championship on Wednesday night.

The people of houston were very excited to celebrate with their team.

By all accounts, an estimated one million people lined up along the parade route leading to city hall.

Half of those traveled by train into downtown to be a part of history.

The Astros brought hope to those who were still recovering from hurricane harvey.

The road to victory began in 2011 when Jim Crane bought the team from Drayton McClane.

The condition to get the sale approved by Major League Baseball (MLB) was moving the team to the American League from the National League the following year.

At the time of the sale, the Astros were on the decline after their previous appearance in the 2005 World Series.

Crane knew they had to rebuild the team from scratch.

The first step in the master plan was hiring Jeff Luhnow, who was the architect behind the St.Louis Cardinals 2006 and 2011 championship teams, as the Astros general manager.

Luhnow used sports analytics to figure out who would be the right fit for the Astros.

In the early stages of the rebuild, the Astros lost 100 games in three straight seasons.

Fans were wondering what was going on with the team.

Many sports pundits thought the whole system of analytics were a joke because they believed Luhnow did not play the sport of baseball.

The criticism intensified in 2014 when Sports Illustrated (SI) declared on their cover the Astros as the 2017 World Series Champions.

Many thought it was a marketing ploy to get more readers.

The folks from S.I. knew they were heading in the right direction.

Signs of the rebuild began to show when they made the 2015 playoffs, where they lost to the eventual World Series champion, Kansas City Royals in the American League Divisional Round.

Though the 2016 season was a failure, the Astros fans were very optimistic for 2017.

The team did not disappoint as they clinched their very first regular season championship in the American League West, went through the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees to win the American League pennant.

Then they went on to beat the Los Angeles Dodgers in seven games to complete their dream season.

You might be wondering how the Astros winning the World Series got to do with growing your business or personal blog?

Glad you ask.

Growing a blog takes a whole lot of time and patience.

In the same manner of how the Astros’ general manager had a long term goal to make the team a success, you must look at the long game in building a tribe for your blog and not go after the home run.

No one can build a blog to 500,000 views in six months unless they had learned lessons from their first blog or if they are a celebrity.

You also must stay the course and ignore the outside noise from those who might be telling you to give up.

If you think you do not have the time to put together the words from scratch, here are some business blogs who uses twitter chats to put together weekly posts.

Note: This is not a quick fix at all because it takes a lot of work to host a twitter chat and even more work to put together the recap for the blog.

#ContentWritingChat, hosted by Express Writers

#TwitterSmarter, hosted by Madalyn Sklar

#SproutChat, hosted by Sprout Social

#VCBuzz, hosted by Viral Content Bee

#ContentChat, hosted by Erika Heald

What are more ways you can build your blog from scratch?

Maria Ross Shares About Building Momentum In Your Business

By Cheval John

A brand is about building it’s reputation.

This was the quote shared by Maria Ross, founder of Red Slice, when she made her seventh appearance on What’s The Word?

In this episode, you will hear:

-How To Streamline Your Marketing

-How To Align Your Target Audience With The Work You Are Good At

-Why Some Businesses Might Not Need To Be Active On Social Media

-Figuring Out Your Goals Before Starting On Any Social Media Platform

Snippet of The Interview on Vallano Media TV

Full Episode on BlogTalkRadio

Here is the backstory to why Maria has been on the show seven times.

I found out about Maria through Twitter three years ago when Amy Schmittauer Landino mentioned about being featured in her second edition of her book, Branding Basics For Small Business.

I knew she would be a great fit for the show.

So we scheduled the show to air live on BlogTalkRadio.

Maria shared value to my audience on how she founded her company and the health scare which led to her self-published memoir.

I did not know she would become one of the most valuable mentors indirectly.

I also would not have known she would be the only person to have made seven appearances on the show.

Maria is an example of how to grow a business the right way.

She understood the power of the press when starting out with her business.

Maria did not go after the big name media in the early stages of her company.

Instead, she went for the niche media for the first few years of her business before the mass media discovered her.

She has shown her humility and giving spirit which has allowed her to get clients regularly.

You can find out more about Mrs. Ross’ company and her social media accounts at

Website: www.red-slice.com

Facebook: Red Slice

Twitter: @RedSlice

If you enjoyed this episode, can you kindly share it via the social media icons below?

Marilynn Barber: Author and Style Strategist

By Cheval John

This week’s episode of What’s The Word? features Marilynn Barber.

Marilynn is a style strategist who shares about what type of wadrobes is perfect for any type of workplace situations.

She is the author of the Amazon Best-Selling Book,”Dress Like You Mean Business: A Dress Strategy to Get the Career You Want”

You will hear:

-How Certain Style of Wadrobe Exemplifies Confidence And Leadership

-How Marilynn Came Up With The Idea of Her Book

-The Reason Why She Wrote The Book

-How To Build A Professional Presence On Social Media

The show was recorded on Facebook Live via Blue Jeans Network

Snippet of interview on Vallano Media TV

Entire episode on BlogTalkRadio

Website: www.marilynnbarber.com

Facebook: Marilynn Barber Stylist

Cynthia Bazin’s Transition To Founding “The Smart Chic”

By Cheval John

Live video has changed the way how we interact on social media.

Before, we would chat with many people via social media platforms like Facebook (Instagram), Twitter, LinkedIn, Snapchat, YouTube to keep up with what is happening in the world.

With Twitter, it made communication much easier in “real time” because of the instantaneous response.

When live streaming arrived in 2015, interaction on social media went to the next level with no signs of slowing down.

According to Cisco, 82% of all internet traffic will be drived by video by 2021.

Which means if you are not using video for your business, it will become much harder to reach your ideal audience in the future.

Another reason why you should be using live video is to meet people you would not have met before even with social.

I was very fortunate to have met Cynthia Bazin two years ago via live streaming.

She was among the early adopters of Periscope and also made some guest appearances on shows which was hosted on the now defuncted video platform called blab.

Cynthia have the drive of helping business owners to be laser focused and her company “The Smart Chic” is centered on her values.

I had the opportunity to interview Cynthia on this week’s episode of What’s The Word?

The show was recorded on Facebook Live via Blue Jeans Network

In this episode, you will hear:

How she transitioned from a private investigator to running her company

Why she did not dive immediately into entrepreneurship

How to run a business on the side while you working in a toxic company

How she overcame doubts to become successful with her company

How live streaming help take her business to the next level

The importance of having a mentor

Why video should be part of the business’ marketing strategy

Snippet of the interview on Vallano Media TV

Full episode on BlogTalkRadio

Cynthia Bazin’s Business Website: www.smartchic.me

Facebook: The Smart Chic

Twitter: @thesmartchic

Did you enjoy this post and who would you want to make a guest appearance on the show?

Go Where The Customers Are Located

By Cheval John

The companies or organizations who are more successful have this one thing in common.

They always innovate.

They look at ways to make the customer experience more rewarding.

We see that with small businesses because they do not have the resources like the larger companies to advertise their products or services.

The larger companies will buy space at major events like the super bowl and this year’s major league baseball playoffs to advertise to a large audience.

The small businesses will be more creative with content marketing because of a much smaller marketing budget.

They also know that if you can build an audience slowly through content marketing strategies (blogs, podcasts, live streaming, etc.), they will win all the time because they have earned their trust.

An example of innovation comes from mid-sized college sports conferences like the Southland Conference (SLC).

They basically formed their own television network, the Southland Conference Television Network, in 2008 and have brought many sporting matchups to their member colleges fan base.

Two of the fan bases within the SLC are Stephen F. Austin State University (SFA) and Sam Houston State University (SHSU).

Their annual rivalry, “The Battle of The Piney Woods” moved to NRG Stadium in 2010 and has become a fixture in the Houston sports scene.

This year’s event drew an attendance of 26,792, who saw SHSU defeated SFA 27-16 for their seventh consecutive win against their rivals.

The rivalry has continued to draw crowds since they moved to NRG Stadium in 2010 with no signs of slowing down.

And the SLC dissolved their network in 2015 due to television deals with ESPN3 and other regional networks while at the same time focus their resources on their digital network.

Another example of innovation comes from the company, Paper.Li.

Under then community manager of Kelly Hungerford, who is now the owner of Community Works, Paper.Li built their company through their twitter chat #bizheroes and have increased their customer base.

The lessons here are as follows:

1. You must create your own media company.

Brands can’t rely on press releases anymore because they are considered spam.

They also can not depend on ads because people do not want to be interrupted with commercials that will take them out of rhythm in consuming content.

The brands must have a place where they can put out quality content that will help the consumer make smart decisions which can make their lives better.

And when the consumers believe they are being helped by the brand through their content, they will tell their friends about the brand.

Soon enough, the press will find out about them.

Look at examples from organizations and sports teams like the Houston Texans who created their own networks to provide content to media outlets.

2. You have to go where the audience are at.

If your ideal customers are located on a particular social platform, you have to be there as well.

When you meet them where they are at, you show them you care.

In the same way, both SFA and SHSU decided to move their rivalry to NRG Stadium after being approached by Lone Star Sports and Entertainment because the majority of their fan base lives in the Houston area.

Plus, they get exposure from the 8th largest media market in the nation.

More press leads to more recruitment for future Bearkats and Lumberjacks.

In conclusion, you have to be where your audience are at and you have to create your very own opportunities because the right people will always notice.