Smart & Head Strong. How to live a Marissa Mayer inspired life

I’ve seen countless smart people think themselves out of business (before they ever started).

I’ve seen untold head strong people start some of the worst businesses you can possibly imagine.

The people that are successful entrepreneurs, artists, and revolutionaries are the ones that think through a plan up to a point and then plow into it like a tornado into a trailer park.

Marissa Mayer comes to mind today.

Here’s a woman that “shut down a good portion of San Francisco in order to install a massive Dale Chihuly glass sculpture in her home.

She is also #20 employee at Google. And today she is CEO of Yahoo.

There isn’t a piece a paper long enough to list all the reasons why she shouldn’t take the CEO job at Yahoo.

Someone wrote on Twitter that she was able to cause more buzz at Yahoo in 5 minutes than anything Yahoo could do in 5 years.

But she’s both smart and head strong.

This is what you call a calculated risk.

Marissa is awesome. She’s the reason we have the clean layout at There are endless factions trying to make their way onto that page. She has fought them off for years.

But Yahoo is a wreck. They are conservative, shortsighted and anti-innovative. I put her chances of turning Yahoo around at about 35%. That’s a ship who’s momentum is just down, down, down.

I guarantee she knows that.

But she’s going to plow into the company like a house on fire.

There comes a time in your life (many times, actually) where you think through something for a while. You make a pros and cons list. And then you just decide. Just do it. (or don’t)

You have to turn the “smart” part of you off as you jump off the cliff. It’s never smart to take a risk. The bigger the risk, the less smart it is.

But that’s where greatness steps in.


Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi

Martin Luther King, Jr


Simply put: Those were some crazy motherfuckers. I guarantee they were smart. But they all got their asses killed on the way to the mountain top.

Smart and head strong.

Marissa Mayer is starting her own journey up the mountain. She probably won’t literally die on the way up. But she’s clearly putting her career at risk.


Katie Couric

You have roughly about 30 quality years in your life where you must make a decision:

Do you try climbing the mountain? Or do you sit in the valley?

Sitting in the valley thinking about all the reasons you shouldn’t climb the mountain is a choice. It is the life you lead. If you like it in the valley then fine. If you gaze at the mountain longingly wondering what’s up there… and never go. Well, let me ask you this: Would you rather be Katie Couric who failed at being the first woman news anchor? Or would you prefer to be the millions of other people who quietly wonder what it would be like to be a news reporter? Which is more tragic?

It’s your life.

But if you want to be like the people in this article, here’s the recipe for living a Marissa Mayer inspired life:

  1. Think it through for a while. (a day, maybe two)
  2. Talk to some (positive) friends.
  3. I’m serious about this one… run like hell away from people that will tell you what a major mistake you are making. You know who they are in your life. Don’t ask them their opinion unless you want to be talked out of your dreams.
  4. Take 2 to 3 days where you don’t think about it.
  5. On day three ask yourself: “Should I do it?”
  6. If you instinctively say yes… get your ass out there and never look back. Just do it. 
  7. Don’t question your decision for at least 6 months.

Marissa Mayer is amazingly inspiring to me. Am I living the life I most want to live? It’s a question she has inspired me to ask. Thank you for taking this risk Marissa.

Oh… and now I don’t hate Yahoo so much any more. Good luck. I hope you can bring back some of the values Yahoo has always had. You can read them here:

Yahoo – What we value

And please don’t forget what you don’t value:

Yahoo – What we don’t value

The Worldwide Olympic Partners SEM – Not So Olympic

The Olympics are coming!

I’m excited about this year because apparently they are going to stream all the events online. As a person who only watches moving pictures through the Web, this brings me great joy:

Live Olympic Video – Full Schedule | NBC Olympics

Beginning with preliminary-round women’s soccer games on July 25, all 302 events from all 32 sports on the London program will be streamed live online and in a special “Live Extra” app for smartphones and tablets (available in July).

From a video at The Olympic Partner (TOP) programme I captured this list of partners:

I thought it might be fun to look at what these partners are doing from a search engine marketing perspective.

If I were paying millions of dollars to be an Olympics partner I would want the world to know about it. Anybody that was listening I would tell:

Being that the Web is a place where a huge portion of the worldwide population comes to, you would think it would be a decent place to talk this fact up.

According to World Internet Usage Statistics News and World Population Stats, 32% of the world population is online. (Hey Olympic partners… they are the 32% that can afford your products.)

If it were me, anyone that had an interest in my product, I would let them know that I was a 2012 Worldwide Olympic partner. I mean without looking at the image above, could you name, by heart, the worldwide Olympic partners? Me either.

I thought it would be fun to type each of these partners names into Google and see what comes up about their connection to the Olympics.

Here are the screen captures of what I found:


Not one of these huge, huge brands has done anything to feature the fact that they are “Proud Olympic Partners” on Google

I just don’t get it.

It would take probably 15 minutes and a very little amount of money to create a Google AdWords ad letting people know that they are Olympic partners.

If someone has any reason why they wouldn’t want to promote this please let me know.

It seems like the perfect thing to talk about.

It is such a huge missed opportunity that it’s practically Web marketing heresy.

I’m left speechless.

Please fix this issue.

This is only one perspective on this issue. I’ll likely keep moving down this path as time goes on. So keep an eye out for my Olympic Web marketing series.

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NOCA Northeast Ohio Marketing Communications 2012 Industry Impact Study

Check out this really cool study put out by NOCA: Northeast Ohio Communications Advocates.

The Goal of the study was to:

  • Estimate the size of Northeast Ohio’s marketing communications industry by targeting:
  • The number of businesses involved in the industry.
  • The number of individuals who work in the industry.
  • The economic impact of the industry by the size of payroll.

I think you will find the study pretty surprising and interesting.

You can see the complete study here.

Here is my video review of the study:

Links from Social Marketing Automation Session at #sesny

Here are a list of tools that were covered in this session:

Janrain | user management platform for the social web

Buffer – A Smarter Way to Share on Social Media

Echo – Real-time Web Platform

Tools to Boost Your Social Media Productivity »

Twitter Marketing Software – Twitter Adder – Professional Twitter Marketing Tools – Automatic Twitter Software – Automate Twitter Posts, Auto Twitter Follow, Automate Unfollow, Mass Tweets, Twitter Search, more ..

Social Enhancer : feed your blog to twitter and facebook

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