Monthly Archives: November 2012

Tip from “Grammar Girl; How come we say how come?”

The oldest reference for “how come” in the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) is an entry in Bartlett’s Dictionary of Americanisms published in 1848. Although the OED calls “how come” an American coinage, the entry in Bartlett’s indicates it originated in England: “Doubtless an English phrase, brought over by the original settlers.”

“How come” is believed to be short for “how did it come about that,” “how is it that,” or “how comes it.”

A web search turned up examples of these older phrases:

How comes it then that this her cold so great is not dissolved through my so hot desire . . . (British poet Edmund Spenser in “Sonnet 30,” 1611)

How comes it that the Church has attained such greatness in temporal power . . . (Machiavelli, in The Prince, 1513)

Although “how come” is a legitimate substitute for “why,” it’s informal; the OED labels it as colloquial.

 

Top Branding Trends for 2013

The New Year, 2013, approaches, for marketers and brand managers who want to look beyond the horizon, we have identified 13 critical trends for 2013: (From our friends at Branding Strategy Insider.)

1. The Expectation Economy

Over the past decade, customer expectations have increased on average by 28%. But brands in all categories overall have kept up by only 8%, which anyone at the checkout counter can tell you is an awfully big gap between what brands offer and what customers desire. Accurate measures of real, often hidden, expectations provide significant advantages to brands that understand their value and point to how to delight customers.

2. Me-tail

The consumers’ heightened awareness of their actual control, added to the commoditization of brands and products, equals a significant segment of consumers craving customized and personalized products and services (see success of Pinterest). Customization will become an even more important brand differentiator, with returns-on-investments of loyalty and profitability made-to-order for your brand. 

3. (E)tail Everywhere

Along with consumer expectations, online retailing increases daily. But increases in brand equity, and usage among online retailers, will come with consumers’ desires to be constantly connected to these brands. Brands will have to watch for online retail pop-up stores, like Amazon, and physical kiosks for brands like Groupon, and think in terms of broader access.

4. Siri-ously Soon

Voice assistance – or more accurately, voice assistants – will become more the rule than the exception. Such applications will be designed and incorporated into more devices to meet consumers’ increasing expectations for immediate and customized support in all forms of outreach. 

5. The Known and the Branded

Real brands will become rarer. Examples of brands that delight consumers have become the yardstick to evaluate all products and services. While we may still call them brands, consumers think of them as category placeholders: stuff that doesn’t stand for anything. Understanding what will turn consumers into fans will provide a foundation for meaningful differentiation. 

6. Story Telling Tales

Brands that seek differentiation and wish to establish emotional connections that produce consumer engagement will need to get better at storytelling. Understanding where the gaps exist between emotional aspects of the brand’s category ideal and how the brand is seen by consumers, can provide opportunities to identify unique stories, histories and tales that will differentiate, entertain, and engage. 

7. It’s Not Going to Get Any Easier Being Green

Producing, selling, and shopping based on environmentally “green” production and design, fair-trade and socially conscious consumption is on the rise. But given ease of consumer outreach and their ability to pull back the brand curtain, watch for significant increases in total sustainability and corporate responsibility in the consumers’ decision process. 

8. Social Susceptibility

Watch for greater influences of engagement and purchase habits via friends and social networks. Brands will have to factor in the reality that peer-to-peer communications come in three varieties: good, bad, and bland. This makes companies more susceptible to consumer indifference, their conversations and social interactions. Already brands are watching the “de-friending,” or worse –negative news or outright bad evaluations about the brand. The brands that make it here will know the “how” of this consumer-controlled space. 

9. Mobile Screen Tests

Mobile devices will become mainstream testing retailers on those screens. Brands must prepare to accommodate this trend, as consumers will rely more upon screens to engage with brands and guide purchase decisions. Brands will need to create carefully targeted campaigns for this platform and provide screen-friendly promotional materials and retail sites. 

10. App Savants

Consumers will take greater advantage of applications. But this year those typically small, specialized programs downloaded into mobile devices will move beyond games, GPS, and media, to more personalized applications that monitor, remind, suggest, learn, and know their users’ profiles and preferences. Brands will need to make greater use of such emotional and intimate connections. 

11. Facebook Is a Given

With brand ubiquity on the largest social network, recognition will be the least of a brand’s concerns. The question is not, “should I be on Facebook,” but has now become “what should I do on Facebook?” Brands will have to graduate from posting pictures, collecting friends, and/or offering coupons. But doing so will depend on the category in which the brand competes and where social networks make themselves strategically felt in the category. 

12. Saturation Leveling

It’s no secret that there are more products and services using more platforms and outreach streams with the marketplace dangerously close to saturation with marketing messaging. But just because it’s different, doesn’t mean it’s differentiating. Brands will have to plan and research engaging pre-launch activities if they wish to level the playing field and earn a high engagement-to-effort return on their investments. 

13. Engagement Empowers

Non-engaged customers are a brand’s most vulnerable assets. Period. Marketers need to engage all along the journey, from engaging platforms, programs, messages, or experiences. Brands must keep their eye on the prize when using any of these engagement methods, however. It’s all about meeting the ultimate goal of increasing brand engagement. 

By the way, the number 13 is also thought by some to be unlucky. And we agree, but only those brands that ignore these trends will face direct consequences to the success or failure of branding, engagement, and marketing efforts in 2013.

Contributed to Branding Strategy Insider by: Robert Passikoff, President, Brand Keys

Monterey Peninsula College Spring 2013 Registration

Monterey Peninsula College Open Registration for the Spring 2013 Semester starts on Tuesday, December 4th. Full class schedules and the Spring 2013 registration catalog is available on line at http://www.mpc.edu. The regular Spring Semester runs from February 4 – June 6, 2013.Image

Every course, course section, or class offered at MPC (unless specifically exempted by legal statute) is open for enrollment and participation by any person who has been admitted to the College and who meets the prerequisite(s) of the course, provided space is available.

There are many reasons students take classes at MPC – for personal enrichment, to develop job skills, in support of a new occupation, or to transfer on to a four-year university.

Whatever the reason, MPC is a pathway towards students goals. Counselors are available to answer questions, help with goal clarification, and to assist students in creating a plan to meet their goals.

If students encounter on line registration problems, they can telephone Admissions & Records at (831) 646-4002/4007 for assistance Monday through Thursday from 9:00 am – 4:30 pm and Friday from 9:00 am – 2:30 pm.

For more information about taking a class, contact the Counseling staff at (831) 646-4020 or review the Spring Registration catalogue at http://www.mpc.edu

Timing for registration is as follows: Priority registration for EOPS, DSPS and Veterans: Nov. 27 – Dec. 3. TRiO & Student Athletes: Nov. 28. Continuing Students: Nov. 29 – Dec. 3. Open Registration including returning/new/new transfer and concurrent enrollment: Dec 4.

MPC can be found on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/MPC.EDU

Quote

“I once worked …

“I once worked in a team that was having trouble getting along, so they brought in a consultant. First activity? We had to go around the room and say what we didn’t like about each other. We might have also had to add what we did like, but I only remember the criticisms and people bursting into tears. We went from simply not being able to work together to actively disliking each other in about 30 minutes. Then we ate boxed lunch and ended the day by filling out personality tests.”

Sound familiar? From Ask a Manager Blog.

Exciting things happening at Monterey Peninsula College

With the end of the 2012 football season for the MPC Lobos the team finished the season as the Coast Conference tri champion. This weekend MPC lost to Contra Costa 39-25, and finished the year 6-5.

The MPC Women’s Basketball team is just gearing up for their season and are off to a great start.  This weekend the team took 3rd Place at the Skyline Invitational by beating Skyline College on Sunday!

Spring classes are also up and on-line. Registration begins November 27th! Please review your class options and plan your schedule here: http://webreg.mpc.edu/SR_ScheduleOfClasses.aspx?Mode=text&TermID=20133&CourseDiscipline=NewDiscipline

NATIONAL “CLEAN OUT YOUR FRIDGE” DAY

Via Almanac of Eats:
Sponsored by: Sweet Earth Natural Foods


“One of the very nicest things about life is the way we must regularly stop whatever it is we are doing and devote our attention to eating.” – Luciano Pavarotti

Maybe I’m interpreting it wrong, but “cleaning out your fridge” sounds less like an unpleasant task of throwing away mysterious food items and more like an opportunity to eat delicious things you totally forgot were there.

However you want to celebrate today (I feel obligated to tell you this: when in doubt, throw it out. My former ServSafe certified heart can’t handle you risking your health on some salsa you’re unsure whether is green from tomatillos or green from mold), there is some interesting ideas about where today’s food holiday originated from. Some think it was because of an ad campaign from Whirlpool Alliance, while others relate it to the time of year. It’s a perfect time for the “out with the old and in with the new” concept as you create space for all those holiday goodies that will be coming in and out over the next month and change.

Today, I reached into the back of my freezer (which is a part of the refrigerator unit, so it, too, needs to be cleaned out today, yeah?) and found a couple Sweet Earth Natural Foods burritos. If you haven’t heard about this very hip company, love burritos, and try and eat as thoughtfully as possible… you’re missing out. Sweet Earth uses (according to their warm website): enlightened food traditions and farm friendly ingredients to hand-craft delicious and nourishing food. Always warm, vibrant and fool of flavor. Every burrito is an intentional blend of plant-based protein, ancient grains, fresh veggies, and beneficial hebs and spices. Worldly and local.”

I had already tried their Kyoto (which features a blend of Japanese adzuki beans, edamame, bok choy, spinach, ginger, and shiitake mushrooms) earlier this year and was really impressed with the flavor profile. Today I’m trying the Curry Tiger burrito. Filled with lentils (maybe it’s a super cliche vegetarian thing of me to admit, but I really dig lentils), curried seitan, red peppers, potatoes, and spiced with turmeric, cinnamon, and cardamom, this burrito isn’t joking around either. The flavors and textures are  balanced and harmonious – what you would expect high-quality Indian food should taste like. Just, y’know, wrapped up in a tortilla. This burrito further proves to me that it’s not all about the beans, cheese, and salsa!

Happy National “Clean Out Your Fridge” Day!

Legacy Water Polo Club Hosts Two-Time Olympian and Gold Medalist

Lauren Wenger, who earned a gold medal in Women’s Water Polo at the 2012 London Olympics, will visit with Monterey‘s Legacy Water Polo Club on Saturday, Dec 1st at 10:00am at the Bedford Family Gym at Santa Catalina School in Monterey.

Wenger will discuss her career in water polo, from earning All-American honors in high school to her experience on the USC women’s water polo team, her international experiences, and two trips to the FINA World Championship resulting in a 2009 Gold Medal, and of course participation in both the Beijing and the London Olympics.

Following her talk, Wenger will have an open, informal conversation with local youth and other members of the community who may have questions about her start in water polo, her training, motivations, and key individuals who helped her achieve her goals. After the talk and Q & A, Lauren will be available on the pool deck for photos and to sign Olympic photo/training cards.

Legacy Water Polo is honored to host this visit and appreciates the support of USA Water Polo in making this event happen. In addition, Legacy’s primary pool for over a decade has been that of Santa Catalina, and we are grateful for use of their exceptional facility.

Cost: Suggested donation of $10/person, $25/family
Comp: All Santa Catalina students with ID

Legacy is hoping that Lauren’s visit will help to raise funds to pay for the expense of the pools that we use year-round in the program. Pool costs have gone up and we appreciate any donations or contributions
towards the cost of this amazing program.

As a 501(c)3 your contributions are tax deductible.