Become A Fake Expert In One Easy StepWould you like to become an "expert" in a field that really defies easy expert prediction? Here's how: Take a group of things in that field that have already proven themselves to be successful. Then find common characteristics among the items in that group. Put forward those characteristics as your own personal advice about how to be successful in said field. Then, when your audience discovers that simply staring at a bunch of characteristics of things successful in the past does nothing to help them make the hard decisions about the future, you can just shrug and say, "Hey, these things are complex!" This works for "experts" in stock picking, politics, and, especially, marketing.

Marketing and branding guru Al Ries pulls off this stunt perfectly in Ad Age, where he educates YOU on how to write a successful slogan. It takes four things, you see: Rhyme and alliteration, Double entendre, Repetition, and Reversals (like "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times").

Great, Al. So what example of a perfect slogan does he himself create at the end of his column to demonstrate these principles? None at all! He's an expert, you see; he doesn't think of stuff himself. That's another category of expertise entirely.

So let us suggest one that combines each and every one of his magic standards of success:

"Experts—Even Sexperts—Can 'Screw' You. Into Their Expert Expertise, That Is! Or Is It?"

That'll be one million dollars.