storytelling

November 2019

Be Best, Blogger

On a LinkedIn post recently, marketers were debating the value of blogs—those marketing mainstays used to build trust with your prospects, warm up the buying process with engagement and bolster your SEO efforts. Some of those weighing in on LinkedIn suggested to not post “some crappy 500-word blog that your overpaid agency told you to write,” and to “ditch the blog when you have nothing to say.” I 100% agree with those recommendations … and...

Be Best, Blogger

At recent networking events, I’ve been mingling with other small business owners and professionals who are interested in advancing their brand online. From financial advisors and real estate brokers to web service providers, wellness coaches and more—most are flummoxed by how to begin to gain attention and traction from prospects while on a tight budget. One piece of advice I offer to jump-start marketing for either their company or personal brand: Create an active blog. ...

How to Begin Marketing Your Brand Using Blogs

We’re now weeks away from the official start of summer here in the northern hemisphere. In theory, we should slow down and spend more time outdoors enjoying our natural surroundings. Everything is supposed to be lighter during summer months—the days, clothing, meals and ambitions. As such, our consumption of media often takes a hiatus from heavy material, too. That’s why this month I’m recommending content that left me smiling (and one bonus that didn’t but...

Where Will This Summer Lead You?

In 1905, an 11-year-old Frank Epperson mixed a soft drink powder with water and then accidentally left the sugary liquid and stirring stick outside on his family’s San Francisco porch overnight. The youngster woke the next morning to discover an ice pop, which some years later became the frozen treat now trademarked Popsicle. (So named by Epperson’s children, who called him “Pop,” after rejecting his first eponymous suggestion: the Eppsicle.) It’s a lovely origin story....

What’s Your Story: Tips for Creating Origin Stories

The objective of the phrase “just do it” can be transformed in many different ways depending upon the accompanying tone. It could be orally stated in a crushing indifferent manner, or it could be boldly stylized as seen in Nike’s signature 30-year-old “JUST DO IT” campaign that continues to inspire all fitness levels to embrace exercise (while donning Nike products). Conveying an appropriate tone of voice that is aligned with your brand (company or personal)...

Setting the (Right) Tone in Professional Communications

The Thanksgiving leftovers are gone, and all things pumpkin have transitioned to everything peppermint. Perfect time to feast on a film, a feature and a podcast to both incite and inspire us during the next round of holidays. [watch] The price of monitoring online content. The PBS series Independent Lens recently aired an excellent documentary on offshore content moderators paid to screen and often block controversial pictures and videos. The filmmakers juxtapose young Filipinos hired to...

Arbitrators of Content: When Censorship and Satire Go Too Far

I spent part of this winter in central Oregon, where it snowed often and ice frequently accumulated on the roads. One early March morning I confidently headed out for groceries in a Nissan Pathfinder and very briefly lost control of the vehicle. I’d misjudged the Pathfinder’s four-wheel drive, my own competence and the road’s slick surface. So, with that event still fresh in my mind, I’ll open this month’s recommendations for what to read, watch...

The ‘Heuristic Trap’ and Other Human Hazards

READ Stinkbugs Made Memorable Pulitzer Prize-winning staff writer at The New Yorker, Kathryn Schulz, guides you with ease through her almost 7,000-word article on our country’s recent infiltration of the brown marmorated stinkbug. What first attracted me to this article was my own battle last year with these slow-moving and smelly intruders. What engaged me was how Schulz peppered her article with content that relies less on facts and figures, but more on the “sticky”...

Highflying Creativity

February 2018

At the Core

READ What’s Your Value(s) Story? A few months back, I wrote about how it is imperative to consistently weave a company’s core values into a narrative through blog posts, online communities, articles, e-newsletters, e-books and more. A company’s core values are what shapes the essence of its identity and inspires its customers, prospects, employees and strategic partners to align themselves with a brand and, in turn, take positive action. Never has there been more scrutiny...

At the Core

If you’re spending the majority of your resources writing audacious advertising claims to promote your brand, products and services, then stop. In the age of self-educating customers, you need to be offering high-quality content that’s educational, thoughtful and entertaining. Here’s six tips on how to redirect your marketing efforts for effective results. 1. Know thy brand strategy. Your company’s ultimate purpose for existing (beyond making money) and your target customer are at the core of...

Six Tips to Make Your Content Educational, Thoughtful, Entertaining and Effective