Spotlight Interview: Dave Mattson

Dave Mattson - Sandler Systems, Inc

Dave talks about innovation, learning from customers, and success in sales.

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Spotlight Interview: David Allen

David Allen - Getting Things Done

David talks about GTD and how it can help you, your business, and your success.

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Spotlight Interview: Gordon Logan

Gordon Logan - Sport Clips

Gordon talks about Sport Clips and the success of the franchise model he built.

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Jo Clarkson
The Alternative Board

The Alternative Board helps forward-thinking business owners grow their businesses, increase profitability and improve their lives by leveraging local business advisory boards, private business coaching and proprietary strategic services.

Jo Clarkson and her business partners brought The Alternative Board “TAB” to the UK in 2009 as the first phase of TAB’s global expansion. Since 2009 “TAB” has been established in New Zealand, Australia, Germany, the Czech Republic and Ireland.  How can a business owner determine if a peer advisory board could be a resource worth tapping into?

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Anthony Russo
Identity Marketing

Anthony Russo has been a self-employed business owner for more than five years and is one of the top agency owners in the experiential promotional marketing field. Not only does he operate a seven-figure agency, but he’s also a professional speaker and an emcee for large national events. Tell us a little more about your business. What are some of your goals for Identity Marketing in 2015?

Anthony: Running an experiential staffing agency, I have several talented people who work for me on both small and large levels. We also have the ability to expand our niche in the industry without stepping on our clients’ toes.

This year, we’re trying to expand our capabilities and workload to add more event planning and execution. We’re mostly focusing on small events to get our name on the map, but as our reputation grows, we’ll move into other spaces and diversify our client base.

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Frank Guerra-principal-Altis-Cardinal-LLC
Frank Guerra
Altis Cardinal, LLC

Altis Cardinal, LLC is a Miami-based full-service real estate firm formed in 2009 by Frank Guerra to provide acquisition and management services related to real estate assets.

Altis’ principals boast a wealth of experience in the real estate field, including the development and acquisition of over a billion dollars of condominium assets, asset management, property management, legal expertise, and financial expertise regarding complex real estate matters. This background offers a unique and all-encompassing perspective that is critical in formulating and implementing effective strategies in today’s complex real estate environment.  What are some common issues you see clients and competitors face when it comes to real estate acquisitions and how can they be avoided?

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Michael Ramirez SearchRPM
Michael Ramirez
Founder & SEO Expert

Michael Ramirez founded SearchRPM to build online brands that customers and search engines love. From their headquarters in Austin, TX, SearchRPM has been serving clients both locally and nationwide since 2011. Using a process called Design, Measure, Evolve, SearchRPM is able to incorporate both creative and analytical principals into every SEO project for improved search results.

Today’s SEO strategies also require even greater attention to branding and community. Most brands have what it takes to build a community online and improve their search engine visibility – they just don’t know it yet. SearchRPM helps clients discover their brand strengths and identifies the promotion channels that will create an engaged audience.  How did the realization that many SEO practices go against traditional marketing lessons, inspire you create your own approach?

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Brian Basilico
Brian Basilico
B2b Interactive Marketing, Inc.
Founder and President

Brian Basilico is an award-winning, internationally recognized author and speaker (and a self-professed geek.)

Brian is also the founder and president of B2b Interactive Marketing Inc., an award winning marketing consulting and Production Company based out of Aurora, Illinois.

B2b helps companies and non-profits market their products and services through the effective use of online tools including: websites, blogs, email, social networking, Google, S.E.O., YouTube, and more.  Can you talk about the inspiration behind your new book and why you decided to use a “Why-to” instead of a “How-to” approach, when it comes to social networking?

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Rob-Jan de Jong
Rob-Jan de Jong

Rob-Jan de Jong is an international speaker, writer and consultant on strategy and leadership themes. He serves as an expert lecturer at various leading business schools such as the Wharton Business School (USA), Thunderbird School of Global Management (USA), Nyenrode Business University (The Netherlands), and Sabanci Business University (Turkey).

In 2015, Rob-Jan will be launching and promoting his book Anticipate, which is the culmination of 8 years of work in understanding how leaders can increase their visionary capacity.  Where does your interest and passion for understanding leadership come from?

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Carol Shepley
Carol Shepley
St. Louis: An Illustrated Timeline

Many books have chronicled the exciting and complex history of the Gateway City, but none have taken a wide-angle view while capturing its most pivotal moments, until now.

Through fascinating vignettes, illustrated with hundreds of photographic treasures, St. Louis: An Illustrated Timeline (Reedy Press), reveals how a fur-trading outpost grew into a major American city. This tour through the past, guided by award-winning author and historian Carol Shepley, delivers more than the typical highlights.  What inspired you to take on a project with such an enormous scope?

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Evan Singer
Evan Singer
General Manager

SmartBiz is a joint effort of Golden Pacific Bancorp and Better Finance, Inc. Golden Pacific is a member of the SBA’s Preferred Lenders Program (PLP) and Better Finance, Inc. is a financial technology company providing innovative leasing and credit solutions online, in-store and via mobile.

Together, they are revolutionizing financial services for small businesses and consumers. Using their advanced technology platform they are able to help customers reduce the cost of borrowing, receive credit faster, and enjoy a better lending experience. They also work with other lenders, including other PLP banks, to get loans funded quickly and easily. Can you expand on how you’re revolutionizing financial services for both small businesses and consumers?

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Tim Rich
Tim Rich
Heart of Missouri United Way
Executive Director

Tim Rich is the executive director of Heart of Missouri United Way, a nationally affiliated organization. This community-based and volunteer-led nonprofit works to improve the lives of people in need by mobilizing and coordinating the caring power of community resources in Boone, Cooper, and Howard counties in mid-Missouri.

Recently, Heart of Missouri United Way completely overhauled its business and service models by moving into the new United Way Worldwide Community Impact model. As a result, it now partners with more than 55 local nonprofit human service organizations, a Strive collaborative, the University of Missouri, and Columbia Public Schools. All are working together to prevent and alleviate poverty among at-risk youth.

In addition to an extensive history of serving local nonprofits (including the Salvation Army and the Central Missouri Food Bank), Tim served as the director of development for the College of Arts and Sciences at the University of Missouri and in-state chief of staff for Missouri’s former 9th U.S. Congressional District.

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Brittany Hodak
Brittany Hodak

ZinePak specializes in creating custom packages for pop-culture superfans. Since the company’s inception in 2011, superstars including Katy Perry, KISS, Taylor Swift, George Strait, Mumford & Sons, and dozens of other performers have turned to ZinePak for help elevating their entertainment offerings.

ZinePak was founded by Brittany Hodak, whose career began in the music industry, and Kim Kaupe, whose background is in publishing. Although both industries experienced double-digit sales declines for almost a decade prior to ZinePak’s launch, the cofounders saw a need in the marketplace for compelling, physical products for entertainment fans and set out to create a company to create them.

ZinePak’s namesake configuration, which pairs a CD with a small-format magazine and collectible merchandise items, launched in Walmart stores nationwide in early 2011. Since then, fans have spent more than $25 million buying 3 million ZinePaks at Walmart.  Can you expand on how your love of writing was a big part of the reason that you started ZinePak?

Brittany:  Absolutely! When I was 17 years old, I began working at a radio station in Arkansas…as the station’s mascot. Luckily, I was soon given other, slightly more glamorous responsibilities, one of which included blogging about artists for the station’s website. I loved writing and I loved music, so it was the perfect job—especially since meeting rock stars was literally part of my job. From there I helped several bands craft their bios and press kits while I was in college, then took a marketing job at a record company in New York. I thought there was a hole in the marketplace for a configuration that really paired music with artist discovery. That insight led to the idea for ZinePak. Our mission is to help get fans closer to the artists they love with exclusive content that they can’t find anywhere else.

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Paul Brown CEO DisplayNote
Co-founder and CEO

Paul Brown is co-founder and CEO of DisplayNote Technologies which was formed in 2012 and is based in Belfast. Prior to founding DisplayNote Technologies, Paul was the managing director of Qwizdom, which he established in 2003 and grew the organisation to be a market leader within the student response sector in the UK market. He also served as sales managers for Randox, Edge and Texthelp Systems.

DisplayNote Technologies Ltd builds solutions that allow people to share connect and collaborate on their mobile devices.

DisplayNote is the inaugural product from DisplayNote Technologies. It helps presenters share and engage audiences effectively during a presentation. Audiences can capture slides, make notes and share their screens to the presenter and room display.  Can you share how the inspiration for DisplayNote came while looking at Sony’s PlayStation devices during a conference?

Paul:  While this conference set the initial wheels for DisplayNote in motion, it was ultimately a combination of factors that helped form the company overall. At a handheld learning conference in London about six years ago, Sony employees were trying to position the PSP as a learning device, when in reality it was a gaming device. It did not gain traction in schools but it was amongst the first handheld consumer devices that saw the opportunity in education. Only 18 months later Apple developed the iPad and the education industry grasped the possibilities. We then saw the potential for taking the content that teachers had created on their computers and delivering that content from the computer to a set of iPads.

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