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How to buy influence, plus trivia and new words to use


Kim Ly Curry

Every brand wants to be cool. Witness Denny’s getting into food delivery and the two goofy guys in crowns arguing Burger King’s value proposition (is it just us, or do they seem like a less engaging clone of Sonic’s odd couple?)

But if you really want buzz about your brand, hire an Influencer. Influencers are on Facebook and Twitter, but their real platform is Instagram, where they can show off their style and wit in carefully crafted snapshots. “It’s all about how pretty they are,” says Keegan Shoutz of Lola Red PR in Minneapolis. He’s referring to pretty photos, but it doesn’t hurt if the Influencer is pretty as well, especially if she or he shows up in pics on their Instagram feed.

Facebook is the platform to reach baby boomers and Gen Xers, but even Facebook realized it was getting old, which is why it bought Instagram. Twitter is where he gets news, Shoutz says, but Instagram is for millennials who like to multi-task by scrolling through pages of pretty pictures while they do other tasks, like eat or work.

Kim Ly Curry, above, is a Minneapolis Influencer, with 34,000+

Instagram followers of her “food porn” pictures. Restaurants pay her in cash, gift cards and/or free food to document her visits. Her recommendations are gold. But there’s an art to engaging an Influencer, just as there’s an art to influencing. For more on the subject, check out FT’s news feed.

Tasty Tidbits

If this was a political column (or a porn one) we’d have more entries from Urban Dictionary than we could  print. Since it’s all about business, here’s how to use this month’s words in a relevant sentence.

Keegan Shoutz

Keegan Shoutz

Hot dog holidays — Holidays where hot dogs are centerplate, such as Memorial Day, 4th of July and Labor Day.

“I can’t wait for Labor Day, so I can eat a hot dog.”

“Dude, you don’t have to wait for Hot Dog Holidays to enjoy a dog. Go to the Wienerschnitzel, dude.”

Neglext — The act of starting a text stream on your smartphone and then abandoning it for several hours while the other person tries to figure out what they said to stop the conversation.

Person 1: “Are you ready to sign your franchise agreement?”

Person 1: “Just checking in.”

Person 1: “Everything OK? I haven’t seen that signed agreement pop into my email box yet.”

Person 1: “I’m feeling a little neglext here.”

Person 1: Hello?

Person 2: “Sorry, didn’t mean to be neglextful, but I  just signed with another brand. So hey thanks for the cool discovery day and free trip to Omaha. That’s where I discovered the cool franchise I went with—Meat & Greet.”


Q: After Julianne Hough surpassed the “stars” on Dancing With the Stars, which franchise started carrying her merchandise?

A: CorePower Yoga carries the dancer’s clothing line.

Q: Name the franchise that had its logo projected onto the ice during the fourth game of the Stanley Cup finals?

A: Jimmy John’s, Dunkin’ Donuts and Enterprise had their logos on the boards.

Q: Consultant Michael Seid wrote the first Franchising for Dummies with Wendy’s Dave Thomas. Who is his new co-writer?

A: The latest version in the franchised Dummy series is Franchise Management for Dummies. Michael Seid of MSA Worldwide tapped attorney Joyce Mazero of Gardere Wynne Sewell, who had helped edit the legal sections of the previous book.

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