Thinking goes better with food and wine.  And good marketing strategy is kind of like a stew – don’t you think?

After all, a stew is a collection of meats and vegetables that you had hanging around the fridge, not doing anyone any good until YOU made the decision that they would be much better off together – then apart.

Stews are better when they’ve had the time to simmer all day, rest overnight and reheated the next day.  Marketing strategy too.  At first these independent ideas jump around, then you put them together, toss them around, let them simmer and – voila!   Strategy Stew!

You Can Call Me Ivana (like “even-a” you can say it)

When I decided to leave my big corporate job as Worldwide Director of Marketing for a divested division of Monsanto, I vowed that I would build a business that would allow me to spend my time doing what I love to do:

  1. Talk to people
  2. Write
  3. Play on the computer

I figured that if you’re going to build a million dollar enterprise, it might as well be doing something you love.

Out of that simple decision, I created Third Force.  This is the boutique strategic marketing firm where I get to “talk to people”, help them identify their ideal customers, and develop marketing systems that will get these customers to choose them every time regardless of prices.

I also have this ridiculous business book addiction.  Instead of steamy romance, give me a good book about buzz and I’m happy.  As a result, Anita Campbell from Small Business Trends recruited me as her book editor.  It’s one of my favorite activities because it allows me to stay current on some of the best thinking in small business.  The other wonderful benefit is getting to know the authors a little bit better after the review is written.  I still get completely giddy when an author sends me a note to say thanks for the review.

I started my first blog in 1999 on Blogger.  I wasn’t much of a journal keeper or diary writer, so it’s no wonder that I didn’t know what to do with the blog I started.  It wasn’t until 2007 that I launched Strategy Stew.  It’s where I process information and try to make sense of what I’ve seen on the internet and in real life.

In 2009 I decided to start drinking my own lemonade and instead of just preaching about the power of turnkey marketing systems, I decided to create DIYMarketers.com.  A membership community of scrappy, savvy marketers dedicated to getting and keeping loyal, happy customers without busting their budgets.  That’s been a learning experience.  It’s still in the early stages — so you’d better join now while I’m still learning and not charging.

Well, one thing leads to another and now you can see my content on AMEX Open Forum where I contribute as part of Anita Campbell’s experts.  I’m also the blog editor for Survey Analytics and QuestionPro blogs and will contribute content here and there all over the web.

But this is where everything begins — Strategy Stew.  If you want to know what marketers are thinking come here.  Then head over to DIYMarketers and see how it’s applied in real life.

But whatever you do — have fun making money.

9 thoughts on “About”

  1. Hi Ivana, You sound quite fun! I am a South African, now in UK with the sweetheart of my youth. Long story, wont bore you.
    I am working on an extremely ambitious project trying to motivate kids in Africa in science and maths education. I say I am going to take $2 million and within three years donate $80 million to motivation for maths and science education in Africa. And keep on donating that amount every year.
    I came across your site whilst doing research for my project, looking at membership site software reviews.
    If you want to know more, keep in touch. You may be able to provide me with help.
    My chances of getting this off the ground are slim, I realise that, but the thought of telling my grandkids that I did something that made a positive difference in this world, make me keep on going against the odds.

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Practical Marketing Strategies for Small Business