Marketing | Environment | Culture

Author: Ethan Beute (Page 2 of 22)

Chief Evangelist at BombBomb, host of The Customer Experience Podcast and Chief Evangelist, and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of Human-Centered Communication and Rehumanize Your Business. Marketing and communication strategist. Writer, producer, and editor.Helping business professionals build human connection across the digital divide. Advocating fresh air, clean water, and fertile soil. BA, University of Michigan. MBA, University of Colorado-Colorado Springs.

Update: Education Levels of the Richest People in America

Back in January 2012, I wrote this piece about the education levels of the members of the Forbes 400 – the richest people in America.

I won’t tread back through the trope that formal and higher education is a waste of time – an idea supported by the isolation and celebration of stories of high school and college dropouts amassing huge hoards of money (again, click here for that).

I just reviewed the 2017 Forbes 400 and have updated information about the education levels of the people who made this year’s list (“Doctorate, Degree, or Dropout“).

Minimum net worth to make the list this year: $2,000,000,000.
Average net worth of the group: $6,700,000,000.

Take a look at how they compare to the US population overall and how the numbers compare to my roundup from nearly 6 years ago.

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Blender How To: Better Breakfasts and Lunches

For the past several years, I’ve brought lunch to work in a cup, glass, Yeti, or another form of cylindrical, upright container. And I’ve often answered for it.

Curious people wonder:
Why? What’s in that? Why does it look that way? Does it taste as bad as it looks? What recipes do you use?

The short answers:
Health and nutrition. All kinds of things. Ingredients determine color and liquid determines texture. No, it’s usually great. None.

The longer answer:
In the spirit of one of my favorite content marketing tips*, I’ve addressed these questions with this Blender how to – a quick guide to better breakfasts and lunches.

*Aside: In your videos, emails, blog posts, and other channels, answer the frequently asked questions you’re getting. If some people have the question, others do, too – you can be the source for the information. And you can potentially save time by segmenting these FAQs and answers by types of people who ask or trigger points for asking and preemptively sending the answers before they’re even asked.


Blender How To: What You Need

Handheld slow motion video of the blender in action.


Before you get to the actual blend, of course, you must be prepared.

As mentioned above, I never use a recipe, but I try to keep basic ingredients on hand.

Among them …

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A Non-Competitive Look at Competing on Customer Experience

If you’re familiar with Simon Sinek‘s Start with Why, then you’re familiar with his Golden Circle.

Your Why is at the core.
It’s wrapped in your How.
And the circle’s outermost ring is your What.

The pitch: Most companies pitch themselves outside in (What you do, How you do it, Why you do it). But working inside out (Why, How, What) is far more inspiring and effective.

Because the model is so simple, yet powerful, Sinek’s 2009 presentation at TEDx Puget Sound is one of the most viewed TED videos ever (see it).


Here are two non-competitive, side-by-side looks at (and listens to) the same song producing a dramatically different customer experience. And what that means for your business.

The What: the same notes played and the same lyrics sung in the same order.
The Why and How: wonderfully distinct musical outcomes.


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Environmental Protection: Because Adulting is Difficult

When you were a child, were you commanded to clean your room by a parent?

Compelled to clear the table or clean the dishes after dinner?
Forced to fold the laundry?
Told to take the garbage or recycling outside to their proper bins?

Sure! These were demanded of me decades ago and our son is asked and expected to do the same today.

These are basic and shared responsibilities to maintain a nice, clean, and healthy home.

  • Basic instructions.
  • Clear expectations.
  • Regular supervision.
  • Performance standards.
  • Threat of punishment.
  • Occasional, necessary enforcement.

Had it not been for all the direct, parental attention, I may never have built the habits and skills necessary to do so as an adult. Playing outside with friends or firing up a video game console was far more attractive. Someone else can run the vacuum cleaner!

And we’ve all had that sibling or roommate who didn’t live up to basic standards of health and cleanliness. Too self-interested. Insufficiently motivated. Plays by their own rules.

But the consequences are shared. And, at the end of the day, someone has to clean up.

And so it is with environmental protection.


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Sustainability Progress Comes from Local Leadership


Sustainability progress. Climate resilience. Resource efficiency.

Driven by local leadership, these things are happening in hundreds of US cities every day.

If you’re discouraged by the climate denial of our President-elect and his nominee to lead the Environmental Protection Agency, restore your faith with two quick stories here.

One is from Grand Rapids, Michigan and the other’s from Palm Beach, Florida.

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On Right Living: The 3 Most Important Things You Can Be


When our son was born several years ago, I thought very much about the kind of person we’d like him to be. Which qualities and characteristics to cultivate. What “right” living looks like.

From that motivation came an elementary system to share with him – basic guidelines for “right” living. It had to be simple, but scalable. Approachable for a child, but meaningful enough to grow with him into adulthood.

The result: The Three Most Important Things You Can Be.

Review them, see a fourth addition, consider other systems, and share your own thoughts.

Give it a look for yourself. And consider its applications in parenting.

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