Thursday, December 10, 2009

Renaissance State of Mind --- Detroit Song of the Year

My vote for Detroit Video/Song of the Year ....

Eventhough I may not be the biggest fan of shopping at Fairlane or Somerset, or even patronizing some suburban cities (yeah, I am really devoted to Detroit right now) ... this is still an excellent colab from Ro Spit and Monica Blaire ... luvs it, can't wait to get that Detroit Riots t-shirt I see Ro blazing and shout out to Buff1 of Athletic Mic League, standing tough in the video.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Divas Social Sale is Back, Black and Better than Ever!!!

So it was one of the most random weeks ever. I started a slur campaign against one of Detroits worst individuals. I almost suffered complete failure after my event was cancelled - I found some boot straps and used them .... and then I found the lovely people at 5E Gallery (thanks to James at DSE@Grand, what an awesome dude) ... and to much acclaim, the DIVAS SOCIAL SALE is BACK, BLACK and BETTER than ever!

The new date for the SALE is Dec. 13, 2009 from 4-9pm .... at the 5E Gallery at 2125 Michigan Ave.

Aside from this, the space over at 5E has really influenced how the event has grown, its become extremely urban, yet will remain chic ... but its all about transition DIVA-dom to include a radical sense of style, a devoted understanding of the individualism required to be a DIVA and a Detroiter at the same time.

My goal is still the same, to host an event that allows for Detroiters to meet with Detroit based retail stores, see the products that they offer and build a relationship with them ...
But now I want to include so many more types of people, like the boys that are selling their mixtapes in front of liquor stores, students with junior t-shirt lines, mom's who alter clothes on the side from raising families ...modern day hustlers.

I'll keep you posted ... see you at the SALE!

Saturday, November 28, 2009


On Blast: ROBERT THOMAS, world class dawg

So, I don't know what was so hard about not answering the phone and basically just saying, "Chris, I know you've been planning this event for a few weeks, and I know that I said you can have it at my loft, however, it's not looking too good, maybe you should check some other places out." And I would have gladly accepted that. But no, instead you repeatedly tried to get me to have secret "meetings" with you, you offered to buy me a phone when mines was turned off.

You lied about some random trip to Atlanta stressing that you were cooking for Tyler Perry, when I hear that you are nothing but a dish washer at your job downtown, and a maintenance man for Ford ... Then, your lying friend George, who took no time to hate on when you saw me at the gym, tells me that your girlfriend, some round the way old head, pays all your bills, kicks you out when she wants, is jealous, and basically has you tied down by the balls ... so you lie and squirm and put others in a bad position because you're such a self asshole that you don't realize that this is crap you get laid out for.

But I'm in public relations, and this is just some some simple damage control. So here is goes. This guy, Robert Thomas, is a cheater, he's been all over the city, spreading "seeds", making "connections" with women at the YMCA (who had to put him on blast months ago), with chicks at his job (which explains his annotated work schedule), go blue-ers in Ann Arbor (because their easier than the ones in Detroit, apparently).

So, Donna, its your call. What kinda woman are you about to be? Why would you allow this crap, when you obviously can do bad all by yourself. I mean, he ain't fine and he clearly ain't even that into YOU ... so why bother?

Any way, these two single handedly almost ruined my DIVAS SOCIAL SALE with their childish history, so why not put the bastard on blast. They cost me money, and I am tired of letting shit slide (and that a saying, if not, it should be) ... be glad I didn't go into detail about how I went to the bathroom and came out and this dude Robert had the nerve to be butt-naked in my living room ...like, seriously (too funny, SOOOO FUNNY), what did you think was gonna happen!?

Friday, November 13, 2009

Enjoying the hustle

I had the opportunity to sit in on a sales pitch today. And usually people don't necessarily volunteer to sit in on sales pitches, but I was kinda suckered into this ... a friend invited me to live blog from a meeting of "forward thinking" individuals. I arrive and find a hefty group of nicely dress African Americans. Not saying that I instantly became interested, but for a second I stopped thinking about my exit excuse.

This particular pitch offered an opportunity to tap into a market of approximately 340 million people ... coffee drinkers. OrGano Gold is a healthy coffee producer, personally I had no idea that coffee couldn't really be un-healthy. The presenters disclaimer, "Some things that you may hear about today may seem too good to be true" ... I completely agree, call me pessimistic. She strikes up a conversation with the entire audience, and engages us in talks of finding large sums of money, lifestyle changes, healthy and beauty in the bottoms of instance coffee boxes.

The presenter also manages to sneak diss a different network marketing product (Body Magic), which I thought was odd ... I mean, they aren't even in the same industry.

She reveals that she's tried other network marketing schemes, all of which have failed. Weight loss, coffee, super stardom, jet setting, coffee ... a $98 billion industry, one where people have addictions too ... therefore you know you'd always have a client (just like other vices that make bank, i.e. cigarettes, liquor, pharmaceutical drugs) ... this pitch is getting better and better.

But I guess I gotta get this blog together and talk about my respect for this ladies hustle. My friend, a co-worker, has no doubt been an influence on many lives. But she takes it in stride, she enjoys her hustle. A mother, author, executive, wife, teacher and friend, she handles her business.

The presenter is begining to talk about the money ... so she has to bring up (and the music begins to play), former wide receiver for the Denver Broncos, Mr. Rod Smith ... who also sales coffee. He begins his story, its a little cookie cutter, "I grew up in the projects..." ...well, I'm too sleepy for this...Back to the presentation, "No one ever gave me anything" ... heard it before. I'm beginning to get tired of this entire situation. And I look a little bit deeper ... I look at the mentality. It's inspiring, it's natural to some of them, because you just have to be a salesman.

And ofcourse you'll have to "remember where you came from" they obviously aren't signing Paris Hilton up to slang coffee.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Ellington on Music

"It's a record selling business."

I mean, how could I have not gotten that? It seems so simple.

Frontman, hustler, rapper, member of Detroit-based rap duo (City Council), Mayor Wills. I feel as if I'm taking HIP HOP Sales 101, taking notes.

For some reason I use to think that it was all about the music, it was about the message, the soulful journey lyrics take you...but apparently I had the game twisted. Janet said it, "Just give me a beat."

My mind wonders back to my father preached on the Devil in the beat ... sucking in the "young people". Is it wrong to say that I quickly snap back to reality ... Wills makes another point, there's nothing wrong with having a message, but its the catalog that gets you on the charts... you gotta appeal, to the market, and then to your audience. His method of rhyme isn't generic, Detroit-bred, knowledgeable, and the way he describes his music shows This is what he does.

Marketing methods for rappers hasn't changed, some people feel that all the best rappers, those with a message, aren't necessarily popular ... thlose rappers need to sit in on this conversation.
The "market" is the trend, its the mindset of the majority, its like black leggings in fashion - what everyone likes, "a good beat, catchy hook, a little comedy and bullshit"...apparently. Jeezy did it, Mike Jones, Gucci Mane, Tupac, Biggie, Diddy (especially Diddy) all captivated audiences by talking about themselves...how gangsta, how paid, how respected, how feared, how ... dumb, I mean, radical. And they've gone on to make a great fortune, with tons of screaming followers.
And Jay, Luda, Nas, Em and I wanna say Ghostface did the unthinkable...they broke out of market conforming traditions...although entertaining have begun to provide a message in their music.

Now, the question is, with all of the new fad rappers we got? what will their message be?...when will they realize that we'd rather hear "the message"?

MMMmm, marketing, music, messages and the whatnot. What are your thoughts on the future of the record-selling business?

Saturday, October 10, 2009


Rohit Bhargava ... lectures on "How your personal brand can save the world"

The death of Superman jeered the market for comic books, the industry basically took a dive after people lost trust in the idea of a superhero. They made Superman human...he died. Its a sad situation. But this gives us

Branding, the representation that walks thru the door before you walk in the door. Your branding should define how you would handle any situation, its gives you the opportunity to move pass the normal "Hi, I am ... and this is what I do... and I should ..... and I could" conversation.

10 Keys to Building A Powerful Personal Brand

1. Don't limit yourself - yeah, you might not want to expose what you are really thinking about or you might not want to experience a failure ... but what if the experience is necessary for you to grow. And if your idea is good, you'd be so pissed if someone says it before you do.

2. Stand for something - branding is no doubt is only successful when you associate yourself/product/time with a great cause ... or just a cause, either one.

3. Find your twist -

4. Be non-obvious - This allows you to stand out. No matter if its short term, and then start something new. Stay afloat by staying new, staying different, being creative, understanding that you have to be three steps ahead of yourself, acting in the past.

5. Rethink your packaging - allow your entire environment to be a presentation to your client/connection or audience. Let it be chic, let it be simple and self-explanatary ... let it be authentic and not too guarded.

6. Work outside your job - everyday you have 24-hours to present your brand. Nike never stops being Nike, no matter what you are doing.

7. Take the right risk - Be sensible with your movement, be selective, understand time management and perspective of priorities

8. Think visually - understand that children have the most buying power, their disposable income is at 100%, so do all of your advertising in 2 dozen colors and with loud beating music....just kidding. A media kit, a web presentation ... check Slide-ology ... written by the woman that helped Steve Jobs and Al Gore create amazing presentations.

9. Be approachable - the Bible actually says, in order to have friends you must first show yourself friendly....I mean, Jesus said it first, I believe it.

10. Create What YOU Love - pretty self explanatory!!

Great Lecture! @rohitbhargava

Personal Branding, Live from Brand Camp University

Mitch Joel, Personal Brands, How to connect in a connected world

1. Create the conversation ... INTERNALLY

Understand your own personal story. I totally agree that in creating your personal brand you have to understand that its never going to work if you don't stay true to yourself. If you are trying to bring yourself up...it might be most important to actually bring YOURSELF. Use our internal conversation, the value that you feel inside, knowing your goals and realizing what it is you're prepared to sacrifice in order to get what you want. Be realistic. Write your story, write your definition. What will happen is, people will begin to think differently of you, they will see a more authentic side of you. Brands have this conversation as well, they push themselves to be real, to be revered and to be utilized for profit.

2. Create the conversation ... ONE TO ONE

The idea of exchanging dialog with someone in a "networking" environment is to create a want to converse at a later time, in a different setting. Networking isn't just for passing out business cards, its for creating a connection that you can take with you, to coffee, for lunch, another event... but first the conversation has to begin.

Listen ... educate ... interpret ... understand ... he has a very good point when it comes to listening. Listen actively, allow your self to be involved in a conversation, you'd be amazed at the outcome ... you'll be amazed who remembers you at the next event. The product of a good one-to-one conversation deprives the "its all about who you know" mindset of unsuccessful entrepreneurs and replaces it with "its all about who knows me". Put value on yourself and your brand.

3. Create the conversation ... One to Many, transferring your values, goals and beliefs to the masses
Prior to this workshop I understood that I can connect to people that I knew in high school or college, and basically string along those relationships. Then I gained an understanding that I can create long lasting relationships woth some of the most interesting people and never sit next to them in a classroom, never give them a high five ... never even be on the same continent. WE are all connected!

Follow @mitchjoel

Live from Brand Camp 09, Personal Branding Conference

I already appreciate this conference already.

The Brand Guru...Hajj Flemings, is giving his take on branding, personal branding, understanding the impact you can have on an industry via social networking. He describes twitter as "digital breadcrumbs", that lead an audience, via "short bursts of information" to an end, to a conclusion, to a product, to a practice or belief. Flemings urges participants to "understand their genius", and take that first step after that A-HA moment to gain notoriety. Translate what you are passionate in to a career.

The main focus behind personal branding is valuing the GRUSTLE ... the grind and the hustle. Branding and grustle is a minimal risk strategy that can propel you into different fields and different industries.

I like that it started on time, I mean, I was late...but apparently they ain't waiting on little ole me...which was my first lesson.... more in a minute

Friday, October 9, 2009

So, this week I am preparing my holiday event, the DIVAS SOCIAL SALE. It hits downtown Detroit on Nov. 29th, 4-7pm and features Detroit-based independent designers and boutiques, unique and stylish pieces, light hor d'eurves (from cook Robert Thomas) and ofcourse, SOME REALLY GOOD DEALS.

I want to create something of a private department store, one that embellishes the shopping experience.

Detroit could've been a fashion mecca of the midwest. The City's has a way of molding innovative designers ...even my mother had her hand in the pot. Her
brothers would host cabarets that featured her collections that included green faux snakeskin raincoats, patchwork jumpsuits and fur-adorned high waisted jeans. My older sister once designed and fabricated her entire wardrobe for a 6-week summer camp. And its not just my family, Detroit has been at the forefront of fashion for years.

And that is where I come in...the DIVAS SOCIAL SALE is the depiction of Detroit Fashion and Flash.

Here's a sneak peak...

Nails by Chloe is doing mini mani/pedis ...you can catch up with her at Northland's STEPPING OUT SALON

And then ... Mashawnta, Detroit's newest makeup artist wants you to personally preview/premiere her newest techniques... peep her work
Denise Reed, designer and seamstress (DeniseReed.com), will feature her fantastic collection of Christmas Stockings ... check how fab they are!

And just a minute ago I confirmed Iklektikk (pronounced ek- clec -tic) will have a section of pieces at the SOCIAL SALE .... how exciting..Nedra (owner) has some great stuff, she really knows how to put somethings together. Here's a peek ....Yeah...its kinda awesome!

I'd suggest saving a little of that Black Friday money ... I'll keep you updated on new boutiques as they are added. If you wanna feature your designs let me know, chris@bethanyeastpr.com

NOV. 29, 4-9PM
check BethanyEastPR.com
for more info on to becoming a vendor

Saturday, October 3, 2009

I'ma Do Me...and this!


So, yeah, I was wondering what in the crap did I want my apartment to end up like. And I think I found the most perfect rendition of what my vision should follow. Check back soon for my rendition of the above design approach.
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Thursday, September 3, 2009


So, after making a few comments on Twitter (darealchrisreed), concerning some remarks about blacks, Detroit and the normal subjects of morning radio, I was invited to write some of my comments in an email and forward them to Ramona Prater, a radio personality on FM 98 WJLB. This is the email that she received from me. Tell me what you think. Are you part of the solution?

Good afternoon Ramona,

Per my tweets two days ago (from darealchrisreed) I comprised the following thoughts concerning the Detroit state of mind. There are many new non-profits and fresh faces in Detroit that are trying to revitalize the City. They share goals in introducing Detroiters to new methods of education, creating income, improving lifestyles and basically moving forward away from our bumpy leadership.

I just don’t understand why its so hard to get word of these organization to the people. Detroiters are wary to take advantage of opportunities because (1) they aren’t use to getting the help needed, and (2) they’ve been taken advantage of in the past. But FM 98 WJLB can change all of that, you speak to the community, giving insight to problems and topics directly concerning Detroit’s wellbeing. However, specifically in Detroit, there is a need for the show to evolve, not only point out the bad, but some solutions, some opportunity at betterment. Especially in Detroit our most popular morning show needs to advocate change, or back some of the people that have devoted themselves to making a difference.

I know that radio has certain stipulations as to what you can say on the air and that you really aren’t supposed to “plug”. However, as representatives of almost the entire City’s morning you all invoke conversation about Detroit, and should therefore give options over argument.

The recent scandals within the CAYMC have inspired many young Detroiters to prepare themselves for battle. They are becoming precinct delegates, running for City Council and creating non-profits that fund opportunities for high schools students.

Here are some “lights at the end of this tunnel” I’ve identified so far:

1. Detroit Area Pre-College Engineering Program, A free extracurricular science and math program that gives students the opportunity to learn college level algebra, they have wonderful summer programs and Saturday programs.
2. FUSION and the Detroit Regional Chamber
4. Detroit Young Professionals, organization started by DPS alum and Michigan grads to envelope young professionals and introduce them to other forward thinking, network minded individuals. They mentor, fundraise, network and be awesome, all the time.
5. The Shops in Paradise Valley (formerly Harmonie Park), locally owned shops struggling to keep commerce alive in Downtown Detroit. They have really good stuff. (Spectacles, DSE @ Grand, Sovereign Soles, Espresso Jazzy Café, RAGS)
6. The Front Porch, local group that offers tutoring to Eastside students ages 7-17
7. BethanyEast PR and Mgmt., this is actually my company (for profit) but every month I give away my services from FREE to a small business/artist/group so as to do my part and help in growing commerce in my city. I am a product of DPS and a Michigan grad and there are a lot of us out there.
8. The 100+ who were on the ballot running for City Council in Detroit, these people deserve to be heard. They obviously recognized that Detroit needs new leadership and they put in work to be spotlighted. I am pretty sure that what voters really need other than the normal radio chant (Yall, please get out and vote, Don’t forget to vote, Please Vote), but to hear some of these new leaders on the show, chiming in on whatever conversation you’re having or soap-boxing it up for change.

But this isn’t all, there are groups, albeit off the map, that are taking part in creating a better environment for their community everyday.

Three years ago my father, a 68-year old retired Water Department worker and Vietnam War vet recognized that children in our Northend neighborhood had nothing to do in the summers. They filled their unsupervised days with breaking bottles on the street or breaking windows in abandoned houses. He sat down and hand wrote a permission slip for each of the kids parents, allowing for them to attend his Vacation Bible School. His curriculum included prayer, arts and crafts, Bible study, food (like, seriously good food) and conversation. The kids loved it and you can recognize a difference in how they act. They are respectful, they are watchful of how they treat the neighborhood because they realize that this is their City, we all have to live here. But my father, who doesn’t have a degree, or a lot of money recognized that he couldn’t give up on the City, he definitely cant give up in instilling a little pride in young children (who in recent reports are so bored that they are giving it all up for crime).

My whole point is that there are problems, we’ve taken the time to identify them, but we need to sit back and understand that each Detroit resident, each unemployed member of the City is a solution, if you can’t find a job, make one, if you don’t like the trash pick it up. We are the solution. This was evident in the 2008 Presidential election, Detroit had the highest voter turnout in its history, there are people here that can help, that care, that, despite their lifestyles, decided to wake up and vote for our President.

So, to sum it all up. We’ve taken the time to identify the problems. We understand that our neighborhoods, children, school system, houses and leadership aren’t what they use to be 30 and 40 years ago. But with the amount of help available, I can only surmise that Detroit isn’t a better place at the present because people are so use to it being bad. Pride needs to be built into our City. Small individual protests like demanding gas station and beauty supplies to maintain their property or we won’t patronize their stores. Getting back to the village mentality, procure the attitude that everyone can’t be on the outside looking in, we need to congregate and no only look outward but onward. But the message has to start somewhere. The question is, is the FM 98 WJLB going to help or not?

I usually don't write these long emails, but this is a touchy subject for me...I'm going to also post this on my blog, as a call to action for the station, check it at BlackCity313.blogspot.com or my website at BethanyEastPR.com.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

@Cass Park... Its so many people out here, honestly it feels good

New Message

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Saturday, August 29, 2009

Interview Detroit :: Denise Reed, artist, seamstress, innovator, DIVA

Residential Innovation.

Let me explain that. I’m in Public Relations and it’s a game for me to think of a pitch for every new and fantastic idea I hear. And during my conversation with seamstress, artist and mother, Denise Reed all I could think of was Residential Innovation. An approach to recycling that not only assists the everyday mom in staying organized, but also stand for things of beauty and useable decoration. She’s the queen of reuse, duchess of reconstruction, this woman has an eye for making things last forever. And I’m not going to lie, I’m comfortable with it. An uber-Detroiter, often times she’ll quote definitions of the meaning of various architectural motifs in City buildings. She’s smart, little, and the ultimate Diva.
I had the chance to sit down with Ms. Reed in her home-based studio this past week. During our conversation she busied up two sewing machines and an industrial steam iron, impressive. Mmmm, creativity.

Black in the City:: What is your stand on business?
DR: Business today has gotten too big and too impersonal, its not looking out for people. It’s become business for business sake. We are producing a lot of product that has just turned into waste. And we are becoming too dependent on that waste that the good product isn’t readily found. Where as when business used to be “find the need and fill it“, it has evolved to “think of something stupid and sale it.” Simple?
Don’t get me wrong, I love being in, having and producing business because I can see that today’s global economy is going to create more people who are taking charge of their income producing status.

Black in the City:: What, do you feel, is necessary to include with every transaction aside from an A-1 product or service?
DR: The ability to meet a real live person. That is what business has to come back to. People want to know that they are able to have a relationship with a real live individual. They can hate an entity, but the consumer doesn’t immediately gain hate for a real live person, who is devoted to delivering an excellent skill or service.

Black in the City:: Has the way you think of business (in general) affected your success? How so?
DR: Yes, when I see a business, I check out how their product is affecting everyone, not just me, and if I see something that is unnecessary, I won’t support it. I understand price, community and the connection between the two. You have to accept it for what it is. Its business.

Black in the City:: I am sure you have goals, but tell me about your next transition?
DR: To move from having my hands on everything, I know to continue to grow I need to have a better team. I need to spread the wealth around by hiring a management team.

My sentiments exactly. As I launched BethanyEastPR.com this past month I realized that presentation is not the only necessary aspect of the new frontier of small business in Detroit. There needs to be an equal amount of attention paid to providing customer services, understanding your competition (and the non-competition), implementing a change in individual communities.

And I learned from Ms. Reed today that you must also pay attention to being able to let go aspects of your business, introducing help to your business is often times vital when it comes to how fast other small businesses are moving. Don’t dare to think that everything could be done by yourself. The growing community of independent contractors, consultants, small management firms show that some skills are hard enough for someone can actually do only that to make a living. Take for instance shipping. If you designed special shoe sole inserts, you wouldn’t do your own deliveries, right? It’s customary to allow UPS or Fedex to handle that aspect of your business, because that’s what they do. Then why would you decide to do your own contract negotiations, pattern making, web maintenance, organization or talent sourcing? Don’t be afraid to grow your business by asking for help when you need it, think of the cost as an investment in getting you projects done correctly and efficiently.

Innovation is inevitable, make sure can keep up.

*for more information of Denise Reed, visit denisereed.com


My walk through the city, Detroit. Good Morning!

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Standing Up for Your Accomplishments

So, I'm a small business owner with a full-time job, on the side. Yeah, I said on the side. And today was when I realized that I have to do what I have to do.

I mean, it's absolutely necessary to get up and out of normal behavior in order to gain success. We see this regularly when we watch reality television, people act like complete idiots, on national tv and all of a sudden they are stars, fashion icons, C.E.Os of large corporations ... and its a little ironic that they develop these sex driven, alcohol-induced characteristics given the work it takes to get chosen for a reality tv show.

I launched my website today, and I feel like this milestone deserves to be recognized. I mean, I actually did it! I created (with help from Yahoo Small Business sitebuilder) a website!!!! And it didn't take a degree or some random classes.

Check it out, bethanyeastpr.com -- Its the hotness, and it introduces the first product of BethanyEast PR and Management, DIVA'S COUNTRY CLUB, the premiere event series for urban professional women. DCC is bringing the modern Detroit Diva to the forefront of business ownership or City involvement. We are improving ourselves, our livelihood, our community and those that come after us...join the mailing list.

Also, next week, meet me and some of the Diva's at the first DIVAS CONNECTION event hosted at Espresso Jazzy Cafe, located in Harmonie Park (downtown), 212 E. Grand River, AUGUST 12th, 6-8pm !!! Refreshments served...see ya there.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

The Need for Customer Service, Globally

Funny story/email about my excellent COMCAST experience. I sent the following to COMCAST earlier today...its a good read.

I would like to express the fact that my cable guy was a knight in shining armor. I had an appointment yesterday to get cable service and I arranged for my little brother stay at my apartment between the hours of 2 and 5pm. The guy never showed up. Instead he came at 6pm, a time when no one was home, he made up some story as to the system scheduling appointments on top of each other to accommodate for "false calls", aside from that he wanted to leave after only waiting 10 minutes while I sped down Grand River to meet him. He had the lady call me TWICE to make sure I was on my way, when he was 3 hours late!

So this dude decided that he couldn't give me service when he recognized that there was a lock on the gate and barb wire fence that housed the box. He immediately left. Red Wings lost. I missed it.

So I made that call and the nicest man answered, I really wish I remembered his name, his voice was so pleasant and calm. Anyways, he made an appointment for this morning (Saturday) morning between 9am and noon. He arrived at a 9:41am, perfect timing, I had already been up for three hours, and I was kinda amped to finally get cable and internet.

I explained to him that this wasn't a service upgrade, but a new service and that maybe he should bring his tools. To make a long story short, he basically scaled the fence the other dude said needed to be unlocked in order to get to the box.

But let me say that apparently the building (located in Detroit's Cass Corridor) had already encountered this problem, the property manager said that the Tech Guy usually just uses the fire escape after throwing his ladder over the fence.

He worked extra hard to get me cable, he was courteous and diligent when he found that the box wasn't registered, cracked a few jokes and was just an all around nice guy who had what it takes to get the job done, no matter what.

But the thing is, I was really ready to give up on COMCAST, especially after I heard that New Customers in the Detroit, Flint, Saginaw and Pontiac areas where usually charged a "deposit" in order to get service, while New Customers in more suburban areas where billed the initial product/hook-up fee. What's that all about? And then the fact that internet was never this expensive ever! (but that's just me being cheap).

All in all a good experience.
And I don't even know his name, or was it COMCAST GUY (an independent contractor)

Now, what does this tell us. Within our business there are different ways that we can interact with clients and leads. Both of these dudes had the opportunity to assist, and although I bet both of them thought they did the best they could, only one really left an impression. The guy that came late, was a bit too out of shape to even make it up to my apartment let alone come up for a second time to actually complete the assignment had he been able to the box. I mean, seriously, why haven't people understood how important it is to KNOW YOUR JOB and complete it in the best of your ability. That often means, stepping your game up. Offer something that no one has offered, i.e. excellent customer service.

Customer Service is oh so important, especially during these "tough economic times" (they should take out the spaces on that phrase and make in the million-oneth word, we've heard it so much) when everyone is springing up with a seedling business. And the fact that people are really holding on to their pennies, and are even more watchful on who they spend their money. Create an ultimate and memorable shopping experience, provide insight into your industry, be prepared for questions/objectives and mostly, be thorough, paying attention to detail is the key ingredient in providing excellent customer service. That and being ready to go the extra mile.

What's the key your customer service success

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Social Networking and Marketing for your small business

I gotta get the panel members for this panel, my minicomputer was acting up. They seem powerful and extremely well-put together.

The dollar doesn't turn around once in the Black community, that means, when a black person gets a dollar, they spend it and more than likely with someone of an opposite race. Out of approximately 6000 businesses that start every year, less than 19% of those businesses are started by blacks. Small business is a major aspect in revitalizing the national economy.

Okay, here are the panel members
Ken Blanks Harrell
Ed Foxworthy
Hajj Flemmings (moderator)
there's a few more, but I am doing this LIVE and I am not keeping up with the names like I should...email me chrisreed07@gmail.com
1. HOW DID YOU IDENTIFY THE BUSINESS THAT YOU ARE IN (marketing)? What was your AH-HA moment?
-Forget about what you think life is and figure out what you enjoy doing and put a dollar sign on it.
-After making so many mistakes, and having self pitty parties, you begin to realize that your loyalty needs to be with you. Maximize your time, improve your skill and make your activities co-inside with your goal. If you say you want to make $1 million, then make it.

Ms. Gillian Blackwell, one of the benefits of the internet, they have leveled the playing field for small businesses and the connections that they can make. But one of the downfalls is that everyone is claiming to be an expert. However, it trying to organizing who is best at what. In my last post I mentioned that small business owners need to find those that are perfectionists in their industries and can help you run your business. But take your mommas advice to heart, You can tell a tree by its fruit. Look at the relationships that your colleagues may have created, take a peek at their e-networking history, listen to what they have to say, do your research..don't go int a situation completely blind.

@ Mr. Ken Blanks Harrell, he demanded that we take notes. He speaks on his success and what prevents them from being successful (making money)
1. There is no need for your service
2. There is no money
3. There is no trust
Staying consistent with your message is very important with how your business lives
Stay relevant with the audience you want, get a website, build your following, be in the face of your audience. Promote yourself. Create a plan that you will be able to make you money.

I am really enjoying this forum, especially when they are talking about FREE methods of social networking and finding leads for your business. It all comes down to building a base, and then using those connections. Thats what facebook, myspace, twitter and the such are for, they are to be used to better define your audience, getting your specific message to the people and most importantly, LISTENING TO YOUR AUDIENCE. Although there are a ton of things to get on sites like ebay and amazon.com, but if you look close enough you can find the things that people want. When building your social network make sure you keep thinking about who you want to meet, what you want them to know about you and why they should want to continue to know you.

Branding - Developing a Professional Image and Polishing Your Brand
All of your information needs to be available to potential clients/customers. Your customers should constantly see it so that when people they know need something, you are the first person they think of it. Gaining HOUSEHOLD BRAND status is very important and very easy, just stay out there, all the time and everywhere. Your branding strategy includes the entire experience a customer has when dealing with you, the way you answer the phone, the presentation of your product, your follow up, the price versus the feel of purchasing your product or service. Develop what it is that is going to be your image.


Thank you to Mr. Harrell for "Own your own, or be owned by someone else." Corporate America is frustrating and I am pretty sure that you feel me on this, let it frustrate you so much that you start your own and do it as good as you can.


What you need to know how to run your business correctly, legally and profitably!

w/ Anita Davis, Managing Director of an Accounting/Tax/Audit firm. Her services is offered to all entities and persons. She assists businesses in establishing structure, assureing each client is efficient accounting practices. She is passionate about economic development in the city and in Black business;
W/ Allen Venable, Attorney at Venable Law PLLC, a litigator by trait, he deals with criminal law and personal injury. He is a strong believer in black business and is happy to offer any assistance;
w/ Nikki Wright, Attorney and Counselor, NR Wright and Associate ; has been in practice for 15 years, she represents businesses on contract, personal injuries, contract/document preparation as well as nonprofit law. She's chosen to sit on the panel after recognizing she can offer legal advice to small businesses; and
w/ Jeane Adams, Attorney, a member of the largest law firm in Detroit, she is a transactional lawyer who specializes in franchise law.

What are some of the things that small business hasnt done to legitimate themselves as an entrepreneur.
Allen V. - Businesses havent sat down and written down how your business fits within the economy and the industry they plan to infiltrate. They havent figured out how to make money, or how they can differ themselves.
N. Wright, business owners, especially new entrepreneurs don't differentiate their funds. They continue to expose their personal assets to risk by co-mingling financials. This puts your assets under pressure, liability issues are a big problem becuase if (god forbid) their is legal action, everything you have can be taken.
Anita Davis - It's hard to manage your business when you don't know how you are spending your money. As business owners we are visionaries, however, an accounting structure is necessary to capture costs and to dive in finding out more about running a business aside from building it.

As always, the panel agreed that business owners often lack when it comes to seeking advice and asking for help. This provides you with not only the proper information, but you build that connection and gain the exposure, and you realize that the people that you are meeting are the RIGHT people.

The proper relationships are very important in running your business.
What type of entity works best for you business?
DBA : Doing Business As, a filing within your country/city that allows for you to complete business

LLC : Limited Liability Corporation, a filing with the State, a basic business filing. Has certain tax benefits over and under the S Corp.

S Corp : Smaller Corporation

C Corp: Large Corporation, board of directors and has many more tax advantages.

Each corporate entity has different tax benefits as well as insurance accompaniments.

The major motif behind this particular forum is ASK FOR HELP get the proper advice, get to a professional. This is global for all, if you are a competent business owner you want people to come to you...accountants, attorneys and consultants are experts in what they do...why not ask them to "hook you up". Utilizing the business of your peers not only grows your network of businesses and people you know.

Products cost money, products for your business, however, make money...in the long run. Visiting random legal document sites is, dare we say, sloppy. Mass created documents aren't as industry specific as a document drafted by your attorney or a statement/tax form created by an attorney. The money that your business spends on itself is an investment, just as a fashion designer wants to have the best fabrics you should also want the best insurance, legal advice, banking rates, location or whatever...investing in how your business is run affects how much your business can make.

Monday, June 1, 2009

On Gaining Comfort..

What to do when you dream about breaking your diet? When you see yourself, as if you were the fly on the wall, and you watched yourself stuff a box of Good n' Plenty down your throat. Now, I know it was just a dream, but dreams mean something, right? Was it my subconscious crying out for more sugar (it ain't happening), was it me testing my strength? Whatever it was, I dreamed I broke my diet. And that ain't right.
Nevertheless, this past weekend I moved to my own little apartment and I can't help but think of myself as a not-as-famous black-Detroit based Carrie Bradshaw...I have a studio, the closet (that you walk through to get to the bathroom) is packed, I'ma writer and the men in my life are as random as my shoe collection. So, maybe I look more like her assistant (J. Hudson's character), but even then these women have goals and a livelihood that they've adjusted to the optimum level of comfort. They fit them. And this diet is teaching me this.

You see, I was addicted to candy. When most 25-year old women go to the store and buy a small bag of pretzels, I was always found nibbling on a Jolly Rancher, Laffy Taffy, Dum-Dum sucker or Gummi Bear. It was horrible, I'd spend about $3 a day on sugary treats (thats $90 a month), and I picked up about 30 lbs. from the time my parents controlled what I bought to now..that's a lot of candy.

So, one day out of the blue after a rude awakening (I actually tore through the trunk of my car to find a mini box of Good n' Plenty) I kicked my habit cold turkey, in the middle of the week. And I couldn't be more happy. More comfortable. And that comfort comes from the fact that I don't get the dangerous mood swings, I can run farther on the treadmill, my hungry-full receptors are really working and my teeth are no doubt whiter. Not to mention I've dropped/reshaped an estimated 10 pounds!

So, make your own comfort people. Introduce positives in your lifestyle, because you are the you that you are going to be for the rest of your life. So either accept it and be miserable, or take control, atleast you'll be comfortable.

Happy Birthday Mom
Have a great Monday people.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Um..Monday's Revelation

Good evening everyone ... gnrlstudies here. i don't think we've met. i an extremely comfortable individual who has decided that i am going to let go of a few hard earned pounds. naturally, i am very comfortable with my appearance, accepting early on that my situation doesn't really offer the opportunity to change anything about myself, physically, thus and therefore, i work with what i've been given. and so far it has been workin' quite well, lol... i mean, i haven't had many complaints. (ii someone's mind somewhere that sentence is going to be taken in the wrong context, but hey...that's you)

and yes, i do know that i haven't capitalized the letter i at all in the previous paragraph. bare with me, i am going somewhere with this.

Nevertheless, in the recent events that have bought me this far, I've learned one thing. I need to stay busy.
But that is not to blame for my growingly round body. A very expensive YMCA membership didn't even persuade me to stay on track and work off the pudge.

And now, in lieu of a cross country excursion of the minds (check out twitter accounts lilkimqueenb and LadyWhitehead), I've decided to prepare physically.

Also, the launch of my new career in public relations and marketing has to first and foremost benefit me. I am my on first client. And I should act in the interest of the well being of my public appearance. Which leads me into my discussion. What do you think of companies that require their employees to maintain a healthy lifestyle?

Yeah, I said REQUIRE. There are plenty of companies that provide programs offering healthy incentives. But its all for naught. Have you ever gone to one of those contracted in weight management/aerobics after work events, its a bunch of office women flopping around for an hour after sitting for eight hours on a computer. It's hilarious.

In Japan it is not uncommon for an employer to require workers to attend weight management courses if they do not abide by company body size standards. Harsh treatment? I wouldn't think so, it's more like a protection of an investment. Studies show that costs formerly used for healthcare and settlements would instead be spent on maintaining business practices and improving the investments that the company had previously built.

That's me justifying the fact that I am about to be super duper sexy in just a matter of months (I'm not dillusional, I know it takes time and dedication, yada yada yada). I am doing it for my future, to be a better worker...for myself. This is what being black in the city is all about...this is what I am learning on a day to day basis...this is Monday's Revelation...work for you, in all of your life and livelihood. If a dancer wants to be successful, he must dance...and a singer must sing, if I want to go into the business of creating a public image of someone...then my image must be A-100 ...

Check back in for progress...I'm thinking I am going to dance it off, follow my twitter (darealchrisreed) for updates and cravings.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

GRAFFITI ... thou illegal art ...Detroit, its temple

So far this has been an extraordinary week. The highlight, visiting the old and abandoned Detroit School of Arts...its was awesome.

A modern day Graffiti Museum, it defines American Urban Wrecked culture, completely delapidated. Broken tile, warped floor boards, exposed pipes, random shoes dusted over in corners. And then there are the walls. Beautified with the illegal colors of graffiti.

Detroit has a strong graffiti community. One that I have not yet formerly introduced myself to. I have been recognizing their work in under-passes, along free-way walls, abandoned buildings, on billboards and sprawled over too many facades to count.

A few years ago there was an initiative in Detroit to go after graffiti artists and make them pay for their crimes (after all, it is a defacement of public or private property). But I believe whole-heartedly that they graffitti will never be fully policed...not as long as there are shadows and ladders.

But, graffiti artists are far from being the everyday criminal. They are a band of brothers (and sisters), who have found the way in which they want to communicate with each other and the world. In the pictures that I took with my TREO 700cw, I see the far from instant messages left between artists on once bulletin board clad walls of the Detroit high school. Its awesome...take a peak yourselves.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Recognition Of Actuality

I am going to try to make this post readible, but I ain't making no promises.

Detroit could and will become a thriving city, full of entrepreneurs, new merchants, new beginnings. 

It has too.  The City actually doesn't have a choice.  

Hitting rock bottom must've been a slow and joyous occassion because I honestly don't believe that we would get this far behind without a warning.  It couldn't have happened so suddenly, i.e. the death of our beloved Mayor Coleman A. Young...I mean the man ran Detroit for 20 YEARS, nobody took notes! WTF!  anyways Detroit has become Ground Zero.  We have the great honor of showing everyone how to do this, how to once again rise from the top.  

New text messages came out this week, how interesting right?  

Why does this continue to be interesting?  Honestly, it amazes me that the media of Detroit are continuely airing the downfall of the City without realizing that they're the main cause.  Take for instance, the news about the now infamous Sex Message Scandal...it dropped right before the 2008  North American International Auto Show, an invent that brings hundreds of possible investors to Detroit,  seeking cities to host other events and bring millions in dollars of revenue to the City.  I believe that the media, or was it just Steve Wilson singlehandedly, wanted to put themselves in the limelight...promoting their reach to national headlines at every chance they could.  They were so proud to be front and center that they failed to realize the new one they'd just ripped into Detroit.

Martha Reeves is mad at Jay Leno, no good deed goes unpunished, especially when your PR/Management team is made of idiots.

Why didn't they realize that whomever thought it was a good idea to throw a Detroit benefit more than 30-minutes from the city should be quiet...and fired.  I mean no one on the Jay Leno team figured that (1) maybe we should hurry up and have this before NCAA Final Four events begin, and (2) maybe it would be smart to have the event in the City you are benefiting.  Come on Jay Leno, are you thinking, open the garage door next time your sitting in one of you 500 cars next time.  Now, I'm no expert on turning free comedy shows into "help" for a slowing urban economy, so I am currently looking for someone to explain the full details of this event to me.  I suggest selling tickets to the event ($10-$20) and taking the money, matching it, and turning it over as scholarships for children who've parent laid off from their jobs.  

I swear I could save the world with my COMMON SENSE!!!!

In other news, Christine Beatty is being released early, apparently she really didn't like jail, and she petitioned for early release...oh wait, that was Berny Madoff's thieving ass...Christine was good, which is understandable, Kwame moved out the city and she has no reason to be a disappointed any longer.  May I point out that on someone's blog page they referred to her as "a dissappointing example of a jump off..." I have to say they've taken it to far (although it is hilarious).  But, did you read those text messages?  Are they serious?  Were they serious?  And, Steve Wilson..you might as well go find natashiadooley@yahoo.com, I really REALLY want to know that she is someone other than the person that came up in my Google search for that name. All I can say is, Kwame don't deal wit no gutter sluts.

But this is what Detroit is dealing with right now.  That and a rogue City Council who don't understand that Detroit is not really losing anything but its mind if this Cobo deal...WAKE UP PEOPLE...its not a handout or a buyout or a sell out if YOU COMPLETELY WIN IN THE DEAL!!! Other cities have done it  (google: intercity cooperation - tourism).    An interesting subject, that began to interest me after I took a job in Procurement for an insurance company.   

But, back to the point that I was trying to make.   Detroit is coming up.  I believe the people are going to realize that our new industry should be the creation of new industries/products/fields of interests and brands.  

See you at the top.