I recently watched the 1988 Joseph Campbell-Bill Moyers PBS series, The Power of Myth. Campbell explores the themes that have shaped our human narrative -- and how the same stories seem to pop up in vastly different corners of the world. In the month since finishing the six-episode series (conveniently available at the local library!),… Continue reading The Shapes of Our Stories
2020! Oh, what a year. After a crushing 2019, I had grand travel plans for the year. But instead of Greece and "wherever the winds take us," we finally escaped in October to southwest Michigan for a socially distant AirBnB stay, fueled by takeout and long, restorative hikes. The daily newspaper that landed on my… Continue reading The 10 Best Books I Read in 2020
This week: industrial musicals (e-i-e-i-o), the shift in influencer marketing, why "caterwauling" is a thing, and Lego-ized 1870s plays. Oh, and LBJ buys pants.
WordStream conducted a very interesting analysis of the top-performing AdWords ads. The study looked at nine months of US-based, English, non-branded ads. They ran textual analysis on the ads that performed best (based on impressions, clicks, and CTR) to suss out which words truly work best. A few findings: 1) Make it about audience —… Continue reading Smart Ads: Lexical Diversity, Active Words, Punctuation!
Headlines and subject lines are tricky. And asking a question in a headline poses extra special challenges. Namely, if your question can be answered by a simple, “No,” they have no reason to click through or open. “Is your refrigerator running?” “Nope!” This little edict actually has a name. Betteridge’s Law of Headlines states: “Any… Continue reading No Questions: Writing Headlines that Deserve a Click
Reaching the right audience with the right message takes a village. A content village. Every member of your content team can do their job, to the letter. But if everyone’s operating independently, the message can be disjointed or misdirected. Maybe the message is right for the target, but not for the people actually reading. Perhaps… Continue reading Build a Content Village
We all know that content is more important than ever in marketing. Think about which ads or campaigns stick with you - and you'll likely realize that it's typically the content itself that resonates, rather than a smart placement or a unique product. As panelist Joe Rosenthal from Ogilvy noted, "You don't want to be… Continue reading Content That’s Worthy: Medill Talent Q
It happens every day: Someone has an idea for something new and flashy, and suddenly it's off to the races - a new gizmo gets designed or developed, or even launched. But if you take the time to actually think through your customer's needs, you might save a lot of heartache (and money). Flipping through the annals… Continue reading MAYA: Reconciling customer wants versus needs
Sign design is inherently tricky. How do you swiftly convey a message that someone can absorb quickly? It can't distract from traffic. Sometimes you can't use words. And what happens when you're using a street sign to introduce a brand-new concept? Behold the Argyle Street "Shared Street"signage. This new mixed-use concept removes curbs, melding sidewalks with… Continue reading Beware… Humans?
One of my 2017 goals is to write more, for me. I've always been happiest when I'm writing every single day, but throughout my career, when most of that writing is happening at work, I feel something is missing. Professionally, daily writing is the dream! I get to flex my skills and play with words and… Continue reading New Year, New Focus