We’re possibly expanding and looking at Seattle as being the new location. We don’t want to take the approach of “build it and they will come” so we want to get your feedback. Share with us what your “think space” would look and feel like — that would be a big help for us in making sure that this location is what you’d want. What kind of atmosphere are you looking for? How do you define that? Here’s a link to our survey, we can’t do this without getting your input!  We greatly appreciate your feedback!


Today’s Blog Post is Written By: Brian Hansford, of Zephyr 47 Brian is a thinkspace member, and someone we feel honored to have a part of our community.

Email marketing is not dead… nor will it die anytime soon.  Even with the rapid proliferation of social media technologies and platforms, email remains a preferred channel for predictable and private communications.  Here are three check points that entrepreneurs can follow for effective of email marketing.

1.       Precious Permission and Privacy

A well developed email marketing strategy recognizes that customers provide permission to have email sent to them.  Many organizations lose valuable prospects by not developing an annual plan for email marketing campaigns and customer communications.  Random messages that occur too often will lead to perceptions of spam mail.  According to Rackspace/Pingdom.com, there were 90 TRILLION emails sent in 2009.  An estimated 81% of those were spam.  That means 200 billion spam messages were sent each day!!  (Focus.com also researched email volume and sources and their findings put spam as high as 97% of all email.)  Don’t fall into the spam category through poor planning!  When you gather contact information from your customers or prospects, set expectations on how their email address will be used and how often.  Also, make it clear with your privacy policy that no information will be sold or shared.  Gail Goodman, CEO of email service provider Constant Contact has a perfect saying to remember:  “Permission is perishable with email marketing.”

2.       Content and Cadence

Send the right content to the right people.  Existing customers may be more interested in content that confirms their purchase decision and future promotions and value added services.  Prospects may need content that helps educate them on offerings and nurtures them closer to a purchase.  The effort to segment your audience based on roles and stage is important.  Also, schedule your communications with a proper cadence or tempo.  Typically B2B companies can deliver content in customer loyalty communications once a month or every other month.  For prospective customers regular nurturing programs should be followed for various campaigns.  But it’s wise to give your prospect database “a rest” from time to time especially if you notice response rates or conversions are declining.  We all receive emails from organizations that initially create interest.  But I myself hit the “unsubscribe” button when I get too many emails that have irrelevant content.

3.       Channel Integration

Email is a single channel for communication and marketing.  However email is not the ONLY exclusive channel.  Social media platforms also offer channels of communication as do company web sites, events, and PR.  All of these platforms and channels should support each other with consistent messaging and correctly targeted content.  Ultimately these channels should help create meaningful direct relationships and brand awareness.  Don’t think of email as the only channel to reach your customers or prospects but a spoke in the wheel of overall communications and marketing.

Email marketing is alive and well and one of the most effective marketing channels.  Respect the contacts and customers you are reaching.  Provide them with the content they want and keep the messages consistent and supportive of all channels including social media, PR, and events.

Brian Hansford is the president of Zephyr 47 in Redmond, WA.  Zephyr 47 is passionate about helping organizations gain and retain customers and does this through services in marketing automation, online marketing, social media marketing and events. Brian’s Twitter handle is @RemarkMarketing and LinkedIn profile is available at www.LinkedIn.com/in/BrianHansford He can also be contacted via email Brian@Zephyr47.com

I own my own business. I have only owned the business for a year, and have struggled to no end with getting it off the ground. From general accounting and law related issues, to the alienation and frustration from working at home, I honestly was not enjoying my situation as much as I thought I would have. While I still own my own business, I also recently started working here at thinkspace.

Let me tell you folks, and this is straight from the heart: I had no idea how important it is for entrepreneurs to surround themselves with other entrepreneurs. My view and understanding of the way a sole business owner operates, and has the potential to operate has done a complete 180. I now feel like climbing the tallest mountain around, and yelling down to all of the entrepreneurs that are floundering about “YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORK THAT WAY ANYMORE”. At this point you are wondering what on earth I am talking about, what IS a community of entrepreneurs, and what is the big deal. OK, allow me to explain why my view of entrepreneurship has shifted so radically.

When Immersed in a Community of Entrepreneurs, you could:

  • Have the ability to ask each other for help
  • Have seemingly endless referral and networking opportunities
  • Have focus, drive, and organization
  • Be immersed in an energy and buzz that could never be found at home or in a coffee shop
  • Have opportunities to partner and collaborate with each other
  • Have access to intensive educational seminars by Industry superstars

I happen to know of a place like this… e’hem!

Honestly, this is not a sales-pitch for thinkspace (click HERE for information and to purchase office space from thinkspace) <– just kidding. No really, the boss doesn’t even know I am writing this. I just wanted to share this intense, real and amazing new energy surrounding me.

If you would like to know more about us, what we do, and why, please feel free to call or email any time. We would love to show you around or invite you to an event or party. We care about you, and want you to succeed [insert big thinkspace hug here].