Writing Great Emails: Useful Phrases #2

Today’s

Vocabulary

(1) One time event: Something that doesn’t happen many times

This extension is a one time event. We can’t do it again.

(2) To get discouraged: To think things will be bad

I got discouraged after he sent back the report again. I’m not sure he’ll ever be satisfied.

(3) Process: A series of events that lead to a result

This writing process is taking much longer than I had planned. There is so much to do.

Today’s

Questions

1. When can we use along the way to mean while?

a. When it’s about a process

b. For a one time event

c. To describe the events of a trip

2. How can we use along the way?

a. To discuss something that happens during a process

b. To be direct and formal about two events

c. To be casual about two events

3. When can we use to touch base?

a. To get or give a friendly update

b. When something is late

c. To give an extension on a project

7________________________

Writing Great Emails

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En-velop_bleu By Jeremy Schaar

This week on the blog I’ll introduce two more useful phrases. You’ll learn what they mean and read a few examples of how you might use them.

1. Along the way

We use along the way to introduce something that happened during a process. Sometimes it’s similar to while, but not always. Compare these two examples.

While I was in New York, I met several clients.

While I was preparing to begin construction, I learned about some interesting new options for finance.

In the first example, you might just say When I was in New York… It talks about a one time event. But in the second example, when isn’t best. We should say while because we’re talking about a process.

In a situation where we’re talking about a process, we can use along the way. Here are some examples:

I know you’re new here. You’ll need to do a lot of research before making your recommendations for the building project. Along the way, you’ll need to study about the new program as well. You’ll be busy.

It means that the person should focus on research, but at the same time study the new program.

Don’t get discouraged along the way!

This means that the process will be hard, but you shouldn’t lose confidence.

2. I just wanted to touch base

Use this phrase when you want to contact someone to see how things are going or report on your own work. It’s polite and casual at the same time. Here are some examples.

I just wanted to touch base and update you on my progress. Things are going good and…

I just wanted to touch base and see how you’re doing with the new client. Could you update me…

Want more practice? Got questions? Comment on the blog, Facebook, or Twitter.

CHECK YOUR ANSWERS!

Answers To Today’s Questions

A, A, A

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You Can Do It All Yourself But You Dont Have To

Supply Chain Wednesday–Three Chart Types

Today’s

Vocabulary

(1) Flow: Movement.

Water flows down a river and supplies flow out of China and into the world.

(2) Parento Principle: 80% of the effects come from 20% of the causes.

It’s the Parento principle. 80% of the complaints come from 20% of the customers.

(3) Chart: A picture version of data

Charts are so much more useful than written explanations.

Today’s

Questions

1. Why might you use a flow chart?

a. To show how things change over time

b. To show steps in a process

c. To show which problem is the biggest

2. Why might you use a run chart?

a. To show how things change over time

b. To show steps in a process

c. To show which problem is the biggest

3. What might you use a Parento chart?

a. To show how things change over time

b. To show steps in a process

c. To show which problem is the biggest

7 ________________________

SUPPLY CHAIN WEDNESDAY

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By Jeremy Schaar

Today on the blog, we’ll review three common charts. You’ll learn some good vocabulary and you’ll learn some good ways to help your business succeed.

Flowchart: Flowcharts show the steps in a process. Here’s a simple example from EmeraldInsight.

flow chart

Run chart: Run charts are all about time. Think of any chart that has time on the X-axis and some other data on the Y-axis. Here’s a simple example of pies sold by a bakery over a year.

pies

Pareto chart: Pareto charts show how important different things are. For example, you might have lots of 100 late orders. You want to know the different causes of the late orders and how important each cause is. Here’s an example from http://whatis.techtarget.com/

pareto_chart_customer-complaints

Got questions or comments? How about practicing some new vocabulary and posting your thoughts on the blog, Facebook, or Twitter?

CHECK YOUR ANSWERS!

Answers To Today’s Questions

B, A, C

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You Can Do It All Yourself But You Dont Have To

Global Marketing Tuesday: Luxury Branding

Today’s

Vocabulary

(1) Paucity: Rare, hard to get

Paucity can occur because something is expensive to produce, the raw materials are rare, or just because a company decides to not make a lot.

(2) Pedigree: The history of something, usually it’s used in a positive way

I haven’t worked with that firm before, but they have excellent pedigree. I’m sure we can trust them.

(3) To reinforce: To make stronger

Each part of a brand should reinforce the other parts. For example, the performance should make the persona stronger.

Today’s

Questions

1. Why is it important to study luxury marketing?

a. All brands should try to become luxury brands

b. It’s key for making more money

c. Some ideas can be used for any brand

2. How do luxury brands use public figures and PR to help their brands?

a. They reinforce the other parts of the brand

b. They allow them to charge high prices

c. They make it hard to learn about the brand

3. How should luxury brands be placed?

a. In an exclusive environment

b. In a luxurious environment

c. A and B

7 ________________________

GLOBAL MARKETING TUESDAY

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Gucci By Jeremy Schaar

What brands do you think of when you think of luxury? Brands like Gucci, Versace, and Rolex probably come to mind. These brands have done an excellent job marketing their products. They represent luxury and they’re able to charge very high prices as a result. But why? What makes them special? What are the secrets to luxury marketing?

Today on the blog, we’ll review the eight Ps of luxury marketing. You’ll learn some great vocabulary. And, even if you don’t have a luxury product, you’ll learn some ideas that you can use to market your brand. In the coming weeks, we’ll look at companies that use luxury brand strategies well (even if they don’t have a luxury brand).

Performance. Pedigree. Paucity. Persona. Public Figures. Placement. PR. Pricing.

According to Rohit Arora, these are the eight Ps of luxury marketing. I’ll review his ideas in simple English. After you finish this lesson, I suggest you read his whole paper.

Performance: This means that experience with the product should be great. If it’s a watch, it should be a great watch. If it’s a car, it should be a pleasure to drive.

Pedigree: Pedigree means good history. Chanel and Gucci don’t just make great products now, they have a long history of being amazing.

Paucity: Paucity means rare. Products can be rare for different reasons. Some are just hard to get–like diamonds. Others, like a custom car, are hard to create. Others, like an Hermes tie, are just produced in small numbers on purpose.

Persona: It’s the personality of the brand. The brand should create an emotional connection. Often advertisements make it seem that the brand lives in an amazing world full of sex and adventure.

Public Figures: Actors, actresses, musicians, sports stars, and so on. They’re people we admire, so we trust them when they speak about performance. They also reinforce the pedigree, paucity, and persona of the brand.

Placement: Placement isn’t just an element of luxury marketing. It’s one of the four basic Ps of marketing. The brand should be placed in a luxurious or hard to reach environment. The magazines and events where a brand is featured are also part of placement.

PR: Good public relations for a luxury brand will give the brand buzz that reinforces the other Ps.

Pricing: And here’s the big one. Luxury brands are expensive. The price makes us trust the performance and makes the brand rare–if only because most can’t afford to buy it.

Got questions or comments? How about practicing some new vocabulary and posting your thoughts on the blog, Facebook, or Twitter?

CHECK YOUR ANSWERS!

Answers To Today’s Questions

C, A, C

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You Can Do It All Yourself But You Dont Have To

Business Strategy Monday: Microsoft and Lemons

Today’s

Vocabulary

(1) Commodity: A product like sugar or oil. All sellers have exactly the same product.

The price of commodities is a good indicator of the overall economy.

(2) To bundle: To sell one or more products together.

In the 1990s, companies had to bundle Microsoft Windows with their computers. Otherwise, no one would buy them.

(3) Network effects: The ways things change when many people use the same thing

Network effects are the main reason Facebook is so popular. Everyone uses it, so you use it too.

Today’s

Questions

1. Which part of a computer was a commodity in the 1990s?

a. The hardware

b. The software

c. The retail store

2. After initial development costs, how much did it cost Microsoft to continue producing Windows?

a. It varied greatly by country

b. Almost nothing. Copying software is free

c. Nearly 50% of their operating budget

3. How did Apple’s strategy differ from Microsoft’s?

a. They only sold software

b. They only sold hardware

c. They bundled hardware and software

7 ________________________

BUSINESS STRATEGY MONDAY

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Cartoon by XKCD.com

By Jeremy Schaar

Imagine this situation. You want to sell lemonade. You need sugar and lemons. Lots of people sell sugar, so the price of sugar goes down. But only one person sells lemons, so the price of lemons goes up.

Today on the blog you’ll learn about Microsoft. You’ll learn the strategy that made them so successful. In the process, you’ll learn some great strategy vocabulary and be better able to discuss the strategy at your company.

Why was Microsoft was so successful in the 1990s? Because Microsoft was a lemon seller. They understood that the hardware of a computer was a commodity. The software, however, depended on network effects. It meant that the makers of computer hardware would have many competitors. But the makers of the software would have no competitors.

In the 1980s it wasn’t clear if Microsoft or Apple would win the computer wars. Apple had a different strategy. They bundled their software and hardware. The result was that if you bought a Macintosh computer, then you used Macintosh software. If you bought almost any other computer, you used Microsoft software. Because it was hard to learn new software and easy to share information if everyone was using the same software, Microsoft dominated.

And that was great for Microsoft. If you wanted to sell a computer, you needed Microsoft. Customers wouldn’t buy computers without it. This let Microsoft demand very high prices.

In addition, Microsoft was able to make an infinite number of copies of their product at almost no cost. Microsoft has had piracy problems over the years, but the ability to copy their software has basically been a huge competitive advantage.

So, what’s changed? I’ll answer that question next week on the blog.

In the meantime, think about your company. Do you sell lemons or sugar? Do your customers demand your product or is it easy for them to choose something else? Is there any way for you to use network effects to make your product more valuable?

Got questions or comments? How about practicing some new vocabulary and posting your thoughts on the blog, Facebook, or Twitter?

CHECK YOUR ANSWERS!

Answers To Today’s Questions

A, B, C

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You Can Do It All Yourself But You Dont Have To

Free Form Friday: Finding Resources

Today’s

Vocabulary

(1) Resource: A useful thing

The consulting group has many resources for helping companies succeed.

(2) Trade Show: An event where people in a specific industry meet to show their products

The trade show is a great opportunity for us to meet potential buyers.

(3) Supply Chain: The movement of stuff from the start to the consumer

Our supply chain begins in China and ends right here in New York City.

Today’s

Questions

1. How can you use LinkedIn?

a. To find a job

b. To find an employee

c. A and B

2. Why should you join groups on LinkedIn?

a. To network

b. To see discussions about your industry that will help you learn

c. A and B

3. How can you easily find blogs about your industry?

a. Search on Google

b. Go to company sites

c. Look for links from your country sites

7 ________________________

Free Form Friday

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By Jeremy Schaar

The hardest thing about studying Business English is that most Business English lessons have nothing to do with your job. It’s just general English. It might be helpful, but not really. The English you need for your job is different. So, how can you get better? Fortunately, there are many resources online that can help you. Today, you’ll learn about some different ways to study English that will really help you. I’ll share two resources and give an example for a specific industry.

LinkedIn

You probably know about LinkedIn. If you’re not a member, you should join now. You create a profile that’s like a resume. It’s great for searching for new jobs or finding new employees. But, it’s so much more. It’s an excellent place to study English. You can find a group that’s about your industry. After you join the group, you’ll receive emails from the group. You’ll see lots of great discussions.

Reading is the best way to improve your English. This is a great resource for reading about your industry. You’ll find the vocabulary and grammar that you need. And if you have problems, you can ask the people in the group to explain things to you. It’s also a great way to network.

I have some students in the Trade Show industry, so I joined a Trade Show group. Here’s an example of an email I got. (Click on it to make it bigger.)

Trade Show News Group

Blogs

Blogs are a second great resource and finding them is easy. Just do a Google search for [your industry]+blogs. You’ll find a lot of great reading material.

Some more of my students are in the supply chain industry, so I like to read supply chain blogs. Here’s a link for a ton of great supply chain blogs.

Kinaxis Blogs

Learning English can be hard. You’ll need specific language for your industry. LinkedIn and blogs are a great place to start.

And, by the way, if you have trouble understanding the blogs or LinkedIn groups, send me a message. I’ll be happy to help with lessons.

As always, if you have any questions, please post them on the blog, Facebook, or Twitter.

CHECK YOUR ANSWERS!

Answers To Today’s Questions

C, C, A

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You Can Do It All Yourself But You Dont Have To

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