Marketing apprentice

Apprentice Looks like last year’s The Apprentice winner Bill Rancic is learning more than just how to be a real estate tycoon from Donald Trump. The highly-coiffed master of self-promotion has apparently schooled his young student on how to land promotional deals.

Rancic is promoting Genesys Conferencing, a company that provides Web, voice and video conferencing services. In a press release, Rancic talks about one of Trump’s associates—New York-based Greg Cuneo—who has been an important mentor to him since starting his job building Trump International Tower in Chicago.

"Greg is a very important teacher for me," Rancic said in the release, "But now that demolition is starting on my own Chicago site, I won’t be able to go to New York nearly as often as before. Luckily, I’ve been able to convert many of my sessions with Greg to web meetings, using Genesys Meeting Center."

At one point, Rancic (who, pre-Apprentice, founded Web-based company cigarsaroundtheworld.com) claims he is "not particulary tech-savvy … but with Genesys Meeting Center I don’t have to be. It only takes a few clicks of my mouse to be online with Greg, sharing building plans over the Web while we chat by phone."

Of course, Rancic is still an apprentice in the marketing arena—after all, Genesys is no Verizon or Visa, two companies Trump has helped to promote.

Along with his Genesys gig, Rancic’s recently published first book, "You’re Hired!," contains business tips on values, leadership and execution. (And in a stab at cross-promotion, quotes from the book are contained—somewhat incongruously—in the release announcing Genesys’ Rancic deal.) One of his mottos,  according to the tome, is "Just do it." Hey, if you don’t have any original ideas, no harm in borrowing from the best.

—Posted by Lisa van der Pool

Credit: NBC Photo, Chris Haston