Put your audience first to connect more effectively

improve your writing to connect

Social media’s ever-increasing presence in our lives is a clear reminder of just how badly we humans want to connect with each other. Unfortunately, too many companies completely ignore that reality when they try to communicate with customers and prospects. Doesn’t matter whether they’re using an Insta video, an email newsletter, a website, or an … Read more

Repeating repetition repeatedly isn’t necessarily a bad thing

repetition of question mark

Many people have a strong aversion to repetition. It isn’t that they can’t tolerate others repeating a message; it’s that they don’t want to risk echoing their previous efforts when developing their marketing communications materials. The concern about repetition crops up most often in planning for ongoing marketing programs, such as social media or customer … Read more

Marketing is more than just the facts, ma’am

Just the facts ma'am said Sgt. Joe Friday

It seems many marketing decision-makers received part of their education from the old “Dragnet” TV show. If you’re too young to remember the program (or the comedic movie remake), “Dragnet” featured Sgt. Joe Friday, a Los Angeles detective who said very little and spoke in a near-monotone. Unlike today’s “Law & Order” or “NCIS” detectives, … Read more

Unintended messages undoing your marketing

unintended messages frustrate woman

I’m not sure that a welcome mat in front of a business ever made anyone feel truly welcome, or a notation on a receipt saying that it has been someone’s pleasure to serve you made up for the indifferent treatment delivered by the server who dropped it on the table. Businesses put a lot of … Read more

What Janet’s brief shower can teach marketers

If I mention the word “psycho,” there’s a good chance a certain image will spring to mind. An image in black and white: water trickling into a shower drain, slowly being supplanted by a darker fluid, all punctuated by ear-piercing shrieks. There’s also a good chance that you just shuddered a little. Assuming that image … Read more

Marketing is a lot like dieting

Want to know the biggest single misconception about advertising and marketing? It has a lot to do with our obsession with weight loss. Every few months, a new diet appears. Suddenly, people are binging on grapefruits, drinking 24 glasses of water a day, living solely on turnips, or eating yellow foods today and red ones … Read more

Just because it’s important to you doesn’t mean it deserves a place in your communications materials

One of the most common mistakes companies make when developing websites, blog posts, and other communications materials may surprise you. They completely lose sight of the audience. Confused? It’s absolutely true. I’ve seen it happen again and again. Companies invest huge amounts of money to develop websites, advertising, social media campaigns, and other materials, and … Read more

Mentioning bad things isn’t necessarily being negative

Business owners and managers often suffer from a common allergy. When they review copy for a website, blog post, or newsletter and see wording they perceive as negative, they break out in hives. That could be understandable. We’ve long been urged to accentuate the positive and emphasize the good things. Mentioning something that’s negative is … Read more