Tarantino’s Knife Block

Because I have moved my old blog here, and because google sends so many people to my old blog when they search for the Voodoo Knife Block I thought I better talk about the sort of Knife Block Quentin Tarantino would buy, so as not to disapoint all those googlers out there.

When we started selling these knife blocks at the Spirit House we were totally unprepared for the reaction. People were either appalled or delighted… no-one looked at this thing and shrugged it off… that to me, is the sign of a great niche market, you feel something with this product.

Published in: on November 28, 2005 at 9:42 am Comments (2)

How you got screwed when I was trying to legally blog a song

Hold on to your hats folks… you’re in for quite a ride. This post is a case study in how to create a killer record label and an unlimited advertising budget:

I wanted to blog a great cover of ‘Stairway to Heaven’ by a rockabilly group called ‘The Fargone Beauties’… we’re talking hillbilly heaven here folks, a ‘Deliverance’ style intro of banjo and guitar and the famous guitar solo with licks traded between guitar and banjo… we’re going to make you squeal, boy… yeeehaaaw!.

Of course, I wanted you to hear this gem… but you – and I – got screwed…

Published in: on November 24, 2005 at 3:37 pm Comments (49)

Turn a competitor’s strength into a weakness

Buried in these pages is a pearl of wisdom that seems to be striking quite a chord with readers, so I thought I might bring it to light with its own topic.

People and companies always use their x years of experience as a reason to hire them or trust them. Many years ago I had the displeasure of working with a marketing lady for a small company who would dismiss my ideas by telling me she had 7 years marketing experience in this particular industry so I told her:

” The truth is you’ve only had one year of experience and you’ve done it 7 times”.


Published in: on November 23, 2005 at 11:26 pm Comments (6)

Talent Vs. Skill & Experience

While I was bashing monster.com at job secrets revealed someone emailed me and asked me to show how having a talent in a certain area was better than a degree, skill or qualification. I found a great way to do this and you can play along too with this neat little test…

Published in: on at 1:27 am Comments (6)

Designer coffins

Oh… My… God… I just love this coffin. Now I can go out in style.
Life Art Coffin
Life Art are an Australian company and they create amazing art that is applied to their coffins (the coffins are made of a recycled cardboard product that is as strong as wood). The best bit is you can’t look at these coffins and feel nothing… you either love it or hate it and that’s what made me CHEER when I saw this product on my new favourite show, Dragon’s Den.

Published in: on November 21, 2005 at 10:34 pm Comments (2)

Cropping works for business and photos

Here’s a great lesson in photography and business- trust me, I can make this analogy work – Len, Mark and Anne are amazing photographers and run Arthouse Reproductions… they have been teaching me how to SEE. Take the image below which Len shot with a small digital camera…

This is not a photography lesson but obviously this picture is cropped (by Murray) from a bigger picture. The unusual shape of this picture and cropping out the rest of the image turns it into a remarkable art piece. Turning it into black and white means our eyes aren’t distracted by colour and makes us focus even more on what Murray wanted us to see.

Now let’s see the whole picture and learn our business lesson…

Published in: on November 19, 2005 at 7:56 pm Comments (54)

Need money for your idea/invention? Watch this

Chanel 7, here in Australia, has a great new show called Dragon’s Den where people with ideas or inventions can pitch their idea to a panel of 5 investors and offer a share of the business for sale. The show could certainly be better but here are a few valuable lessons I’ve learned so far about pitching your idea to potential investors:

Published in: on November 16, 2005 at 10:42 am Comments (17)

A ‘desk’ teaches us two incredible lessons…

I have a friend who makes furniture, each piece is hand-carved from beautiful timbers. The problem is, there are hundreds of other craftsmen out there also hand-carving furniture out of timber… so his pieces may or may not stand out of the crowd, but they’re not necessarily remarkable. The desk below is remarkable… people have described it as cool, insane and awesome once I tell them the story :
b-25 bomber desk picture
This is a piece of tail section from a B-25 bomber that has been stripped back, glass added and turned into a desk. That’s pretty cool.

So there’s lesson 1: You can make anything remarkable… even a humble desk.

But the real lesson here for anyone who sells anything is how and why you might pay $15,000 for that desk…

Published in: on November 13, 2005 at 11:46 am Comments (3)

Why you’re screwed if all you have is a job

Just finished listening to an excellent podcast from Steve Pavlina about how to make money without a job. I’m not going to mention home business so please keep reading. When you build a house you build it on more than ONE foundation, but most people support their lives on just one foundation; their job. So their life looks something like this:
if you look like this you're screwed

More like a diving board isn’t it. If you were to lose your job then your whole life can come crashing down around you. Now let’s say that you have a few ideas, crafts, hobbies or investments that bring you in small income streams – your life would now look something like this:

if you look like this you're screwed

So if you lose your job it is a nagging inconvenience but your whole life doesn’t collapse around you. Understand I’m not suggesting you become some money hungry ‘Donald Trump wannabe‘… I’m just talking about enough money to give you some choices in life. Let me give you some more ideas…

Published in: on November 10, 2005 at 8:20 am Comments (6)

The biggest book in the world

Damn big book
You’re looking at the biggest book in the world, 44 inches x 60 inches (1m x 1.5m roughly) and it weighs 60kg. And just because it sells on amazon.com for $15,000 doesn’t mean that you can’t make one.

Think about this for a minute. You’re a photographer, you have a decent camera and you want to sell your photos. Every photographer is framing their prints for sale, some – wait for it – print on canvas *gasp*, but you decide to sell your prints in a book so big it needs a truck to deliver it and an easel to display it… do you think you might stand out from the crowd? Would your book be remarkable?

Let’s see how this can be done and discover how big printer companies like Epson are dropping the ball with their marketing

Published in: on November 9, 2005 at 10:00 am Comments (1)
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