Jim Gilbert has had a storied career in direct and digital marketing resulting in a burning desire to tell stories that educate, inform, and inspire marketers to new heights of success. 

After years of marketing consulting, Jim decided it was time to “put his money where his mouth was" and build his own e-commerce company, Premo Natural Products, with its flagship product, Premo Guard Bed Bug & Mite Sprays. Premo in its second year is poised to eclipse 100 percent growth. 

Jim has been writing for Target Marketing Group since 2006, first on the pages of Catalog Success Magazine, then as the first blogger for its online division. Jim continues to write for Total Retail.

Along the way, Jim has led the Florida Direct Marketing Association as their Marketing Chair and then three-term President, been an Adjunct Professor of Direct and Digital marketing for Miami International University, and created a lecture series, “The 9 Immutable Laws of Social Media Marketing,” which he has presented across the country at conferences and universities.

TOMS Shoes announced a new product category — sunglasses. But the glasses won't be distributed in the same way that TOMS distributes its footwear. Instead, the company will work with the Seva Foundation on sight restoration initiatives in Nepal, Tibet and Cambodia.

After a series of Super Bowl ads caused a wash of bad press for Groupon, the company has cut ties with the ad agency that it says was responsible for the spots. Groupon’s CEO Andrew Mason placed the blame for the commercials — one of which seemed to many to equate the plight of Tibet with saving money on dinner — pointedly on the shoulders of the advertising firm that created the spot, CP&B.

Continuing my list from last week, here’s the second part (tips 8-13) of my rules for CEOs to follow to most effectively manage their direct marketing businesses.
8. Don’t be a negative example. Want your employees to underperform? Come to work sporadically, keep unspecified hours, pull up in a ultra high-end foreign luxury car while your employees drive cars with rust holes, and watch what happens. When your employees lack motivation, blame them, not you. But as a wise old boss I had early in my career told me, “The fish stinks from the head!” Get in before your employees, leave later

Maybe it’s the fact that I live and work (mostly) in Florida — the sun, scam and lazy person’s escape capital of the world. Or maybe it’s just that I’ve worked for so many entrepreneurial companies that “hit” with the right product at the right time — and had no idea how to spark the lightning to strike twice. Or perhaps, it’s because as a consultant I’m usually called in when there are problems (sometimes insurmountable) that need to be fixed, and start-ups that need to be funded.
Or maybe it’s just my dumb luck? Neh!
Be that as it may, I’ve had the

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