“Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.”


It’s a classic line from the original Godfather movie (first released in 1972), uttered by the character Peter Clemenza to fellow thug Rocco who just executed a co-worker in a parked car.  Clemenza was instructing Rocco to get out of the car, leave the murder weapon behind and grab the tasty Italian dessert he brought along.

It was a recent quiet weekend night and when I saw the Godfather was on cable, I had to watch it, since it had been decades since first seeing it.

Clemenza’s order caught my attention for two reasons.

Growing up in an Italian family, I know just how serious they take food and the eating experience.  Italians allow little to stand in the way between them and a meal, so Clemenza’s request is not an unrealistic one and is expected.

The second reason this caught my attention (I literally rewound and played it several times) was the simple picture it paints for the business owner.

Leave the gun. Take the cannoli.”

Clemenza’s statement is all about priorities.  In the thugs’ world, the cannoli were more important to them then getting rid of the murder weapon.  There was no doubt or hesitation.

We, as marketing-oriented business owners, should be so clear and decisive.  Unfortunately, we don’t have a director, directing us or a team of writers giving us the perfect line to say next.

We have to do it all on our own.

In my recently released High Impact Marketing Manifesto, I outlined three critical priorities I believe ALL bricks and mortar business owners should follow everyday they’re in business (even though the Manifesto was written for traditional bricks and mortar business owners, it’s applicable to any type of business owner).

The three priorities are:

1. Do less marketing… better!

2. It’s not about clutter.  It’s about connecting.

3. Staying focused on what works.

Deceptively simple, aren’t they?  Kinda like the delicious dessert Peter Clemenza was focused on.

Over the next few weeks, I am going to go into more detail on each of these priorities and why they are so fundamentally important to marketing today and why you should be using them in your business. In some cases, I will be flying in a direct opposite direction from what others teach and instruct you to do, but trust me, everything I will be sharing will be grounded in real-world application based on being in the marketing game for the past 20 years.


I am on a mission to help bricks and mortar business owners around the world create better, more profitable marketing, which is why I wrote the High Impact Marketing Manifesto.


The Manifesto was written for the bricks and mortar business owner and is a pithy and powerful guide to creating better, more effective marketing.  It was designed to be read in its entirety in one sitting and I cannot stress enough just how important the four cornerstones and 27 building blocks I share are. You can get it on Amazon.com here.