Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Five Wives couldn't have bought better publicity

T-shirts and hoodies are now for sale. Go figure.
Who's going to be picking up a bottle of Five Wives vodka on their next trip to Wyoming or Utah? I don't think the Ogden company that makes this stuff could have bought better publicity than what it's been given by the Idaho State Liquor Division.


Also, you can now buy a "Free the Five Wives" T-shirt or hoodie: http://www.ogdensownstore.com/product/freewives. I predict we'll be seeing a few of these, maybe in time for the Beer Fest, which is this Saturday.

Exit question: How ironic would it have been if Five Wives were made at the Rigby distillery that makes the tastefully named Teton Glacier and Blue Ice brands?

The secret to a great pitch is passion

Rick Ritter of TechConnect in Boise recently had a write up on the Tech Cocktail Web site on the secret of making a great business development pitch. I don't know if there are any real secrets. If I had to sum it up in one sentence it would be this: You have to have passion for your product if you're going to make a great pitch. But it's a good read, and I encourage you to follow the link.

Here are the bullet points on the difference between good and great:

  • A good pitch demonstrates your competencies; a great pitch showcases your passions.
  • A good pitch demonstrates your product; a great pitch establishes your unique selling proposition. 
  • A good pitch talks about the problem; a great pitch creates a memorable narrative.
  • A good pitch is complete; a great pitch is compelling.
  • A good pitch is detail-oriented, a great pitch is concise.

And here's the link: http://techcocktail.com/5-ways-perfect-finance-pitch-2012-05#.T6GiTr90tdo

Friday, May 25, 2012

What Warren Buffett and I have in common

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett
It looks like Warren Buffett and I have something in common. No, we're not both filthy rich, but it appears we both have a belief in community newspapers.

Buffet, who in 2009 said he would not buy a newspaper under any circumstance, has changed his tune, as evidenced by this story: http://paidcontent.org/2012/05/17/why-warren-buffett-is-buying-newspapers/. Given that the newspaper industry has been in an open boat in the middle of an unfriendly ocean for several years, this has to be taken as good news. Or does it?

Buffett, who according to legend started Berkshire Hathaway with $4,000 he made as a paperboy in Omaha, did not make a fortune by being sentimental. For those of you who've stayed on this page rather than going to the link (or as newspaper people would call it, the "jump"), here are a few observations and comments that got my attention:

The experience of small towns and counties has been different. In these places, a lack of print and online competition has allowed newspapers to hold onto some of their traditional monopoly power.
“In these communities, the local paper is the sole source of everyday news — from high school sports, local events or obituaries,” says Gordon Crovitz, former publisher of the Wall Street Journal and founder of digital subscription service, Press+.

Gordon Borrell (comment): (Newspapers) will bounce back. That prediction (which we thought would happen last year) is starting to come true, though it’s actually predicted to be more of a flattening than a bounceback. While they grow ad revenues over the next five years, they actually lose market share. Still, all the trimming since 2008 has made them a leaner, and thus more profitable, business. ... The size of newspapers Mr. Buffett is buying are perfect: Dominant newspapers in midsize markets with very little competition from smaller suburban newspapers. They have a strong market niche, and I don’t suspect we’ll see the death of newspapers (with the exception, perhaps, of large metros) anytime soon.

Dmitriy (comment): I don’t get Buffet on this move. He may get a modest profit given how low price he had to pay but this is not the business you want to be in if you want to keep minting the coins for the shareholders for years to come.

Ballco (comment): What you don’t understand is the great cash flow from old media products. Newspaper subscribers pay you 3 to 12 months in advance. That lets you keep a large amount of cash around to invest. Buffett doesn’t seem to have any problem finding profitable places to put cash. 10-year Treasury bills are paying 1.7% right now. 5% return for 10 years from the newspapers seems like a pretty good alternative.

Matthew (comment): Commenters and commentators may come to the internet, but without quality content and trust within the community they will not pose a threat to the position of newspapers (at least for mindshare among readers).

Tony McFarlane (comment): Now the speculators have lifted their bloody snouts from the trough, and they see these smaller papers doing just fine. So what do they do? They bundle them with bigger media entities, and make off like bandits. I gotta hand it to Buffet for being the first to see it, because soon, like carpetbaggers in Atlanta, the rest of the vulture capitalists will soon swarm in and swallow up all these local papers that communities do indeed rely on. And what will happen to these bastions of truth, once the greed destroys another once-lucrative market? Bah! You mark my words: local papers will start getting flushed before the decade is out. And of course, the bastards will tell you it’s all about new media, while they tweet from their golden toilets.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Developer eyes mid-July opening for Idaho Falls Marriott Residence Inn

The scene this week in the lobby of the Idaho Falls Marriott Residence Inn. Developers of the hotel say they hope to have it open in early July.
Earlier this year, the plan was for the Idaho Falls Marriott Residence Inn to be open by Memorial Day weekend, but that has not come to pass. The developer said Wednesday that they expect to have the work done by early July, but probably not in time for the Fourth of July celebration.

"There have been a lot of details that have needed our attention," said John Brunt of Woodbury Corp., the Salt Lake City development company in charge of the project.. "What we're most concerned with is that our guests have the best experience possible."

Construction of the hotel began more than four years ago, but stalled out when McNeil Development, the original company in charge, ran into recession- and credit-related difficulties. After they re-started the project, Woodbury discovered a lot of changes Marriott has brought to its building standards that weren't in place when the project started.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Daylight Donuts to open on 17th Street in Idaho Falls

Those of you who mourned the departure of Daylight Donuts can take heart. A new Daylight Donuts will be opening in early June at 1225 E. 17th St., next door to Staker Floral.

Jim Feuling, who runs I Buy Gold, the business in the building at the moment, said he has always liked Daylight Donuts. When he saw an opportunity to open a new one (the shop in Taylor's Crossing closed this past winter), "I decided to grab it," he said.

Daylight Donuts was begun in Tulsa, Okla., in 1954 when Tommy and Lucille Day began producing a light donut mix each morning and selling it to local shops, most often from the trunk of their car. When they sold the business in 1977, to Jerry and Linda Hull, the company consisted of 200 shops and a fleet of trucks. The Hulls sold the company in 2002 to John and Sheila Bond, who have guided growth to nearly 1,000 retail outlets worldwide.

For an operator like Feuling, there is a licensing agreement under which he receives products and the rights to use the name. He said he is shooting for an opening sometime around June 6.