Think Virally to Expand your Business!

Dear Friend,

Hope you are enjoying the hot summer despite the unstable weather in Hong Kong in the last 2 weeks!

t has been a great honor for me to have the chance to present at The Entrepreneurs’ Network last week in Hong Kong on the topic of “Think Virally to Expand Your Business!”.  We have an overwhelming crowd of over 50 successful entrepreneurs from different businesses gathered at the event.  It is my belief now that if you want to be winning in this Internet Age, you have to Think Virally!!

Think Virally is not natural to many of us even if we have many years of experience in Sales & Marketing.  However, if we are back to basic, it is only about building a mass network of Word Of Mouth (WOM) marketing.  The question is HOW to build this network.  Facebook is definitely the easiest to access network on the face of the earth with over 500 million users but we are not talking about single way of communication!  So we need to think of ways that you can leverage what existing community you have on it (or any other social network) and try to come up with sales/marketing programs that will attract people to spread the news for you through their own networks of communities.  You really have to think of (marketing) messages that is asking the audience to take action for other people/friends’ sake!  It always has to be Win-Win, nobody is going to take your message to their friends if they are not winning themselves!

We have seen many different successful and famous brands are putting a lot of efforts on social media these days but they are not really thinking virally.  A lot of the campaigns we see today are still at the pre-social media stage of just using social media as merely another advertising channel but nothing else!  In the last 2 years, Adams has collaborated with different clients to build Facebook campaigns to reach favorable results based only on one single idea,Viral Effectiveness.  If it is Viral Effective, it will help you to grow Brand AwarenessSales and Customer Database at an exponential rate!  For example, we helped a sportswear chain during FIFA World Cup period to create a game for people to tag friends on Facebook to form football team to get prize/gift/discount at their chain stores.  Imagine the Multiplying Effect of forming just a team of 7 people and the 7 people to form another 7 teams…!  I think, by now, you should have got my point if you want to be successful in your sales & marketing campaigns, then you have to Think Virally to Expand Your Business!

Three weeks ago, we launched a training course called “Strategy of e-Marketing & Social Media Marketing” which to be held at the beautiful and modern hotel The Mira Hotel Hong Kong.  The response was overwhelming and the class was full within the first few days of registration and we had to arrange a bigger room to accommodate all the attendees.  Hence, we decided to arrange one more additional class on September 8, 2011 at The Mira Hotel Hong Kong again.  If you or your friends are interested, please feel free to register on

I am not sure how many of you are having problem in managing the post 80’s employees, CAPITAL is collaborating with McDonald’s, Sony Computer…to come up with a wonderful 2-day course to cover how to motivate and manage post 80’s employees on July 29-30.   In the last few days of registration, you may enjoy 5% discount by registering through Adams on

Finally, I have written another article on “Giving up is a way to gain!” for a professional institution in Hong Kong which you can find it on our slideshare page  A number of the prioritization and planning skills covered in the article are the essence of what I have learnt throughout my career!   Hope you will enjoy it.

Thank you for your continued support and I look forward to connecting with you soon!

Best regards,

Matthew Kwan

Principal Consultant
Adams Company Limited

Giving up is a way to gain!

By Matthew Kwan - Copyright © 2011

Principal consultant of Adams Company Limited (

Would you ever consider giving up to be a smart move? To give up sounds so negative, but it could well be the result of a very strategic thinking process. If you have watched the movie 127 Hours, you will understand what I saying. This real story is about a mountain climber who was trapped in no man’s land but who got himself rescued by his own sheer determination and courage in cutting his own arm off…

You can be experienced and skillful in certain business but this does not guarantee your work will be free of mistakes and risks. The macroeconomic environment is out of anybody’s control. We have seen a number of crises in the last 15 years including the Asian financial crisis in 1997, the burst of the dot-com bubble in 2000 and the global financial and economic crisis which started in late 2008. Few people were able to predict these events. If you have personally experienced these most terrifying moments, you can understand that blindly holding on one particular stock which is no longer valuable can cost you more than giving it up altogether!

So, how can we be smarter by giving up the right things at the right moment? The answer is to exercise a prioritization and continuous review process. Prioritization is the best way of strategic planning as well as budgeting. However, we need a continuous review process to ensure we are on the right track as well as looking out for potential risks and macro environmental changes.

There are different tools for prioritization. The following are some of my favorites:

1. Weighting table

By far, I think this is one of the simplest kinds of prioritization tool as it is so easy to adapt and expand to multiple dimensions, if you know how. The idea is first to list your options in no particular sequence. By giving a score to each option in accordance with its level of importance within an area of interest, you can instantly sort out your priorities. If there are multiple interests, then we can do the same exercise by allocating the percentage weighting to each interest area, making a total of 100 percent. There’s no limit to the number of areas of interest but the more there are, the less significant they are. I suggest that the maximum number of areas of interest should not exceed five.


2. Zero-based budgeting

I learnt this great tool during my good old days of working at Intel. It is particularly useful when you have to draw a clear line during your business planning due to a limited budget.Provided that you already know your priority list (which you could achieve by using taking the results from the weighting table exercise)you can then draw up a budget per item on the list. Next, you just need to draw a line on the priority list when you hit the limited budget amount. When you move the line to a bigger or smaller budgetto see the impact on the potential return-on-investment (ROI), you will be amazed to see the huge variance of ROI in certain cases.


3. Management by objectives (MBO)

Peter Drucker, father of management theory, came up with this wonderful tool in 1954. It has been adopted by countless corporations all over the world as a management and performance review process for many business matters. The simple idea is to assign a priority to the list of objectives for a given project or person. Hence, the focus for time and effort should be applied according to the relative priority. Though it sounds simple, I personally think it requires a great deal of discipline to make it work.

4. Boston matrix

This is a very nice way of segmenting your business lines or products. It shows you which really have relatively better market growth and market share potential as a bigger picture in terms of the four dimensions of the matrix: Star, Cash Cow, Dogs and Problem Child. By plotting your products quantitatively on the matrix, clear actions (both positive and corrective) can be easily identified in most cases. Of course the ideal situation is to make a bigger segment of your products into Stars!


Matthew Kwan is a Principal Consultant of Adams Company Limited ( and is responsible for business consulting and enterprise training. He is an entrepreneur, author, speaker, lecturer and consultant working with enterprises and organizations in the commercial and Christian communities. He served for many years in multi-national companies including Intel, JP Morgan and Jardine, and has broad experience in sales & marketing and management in multicultural and international settings.