storytelling

The other week a client asked me to craft a message to customers after the company made a major pivot. The change in direction meant unusual partnerships and new priorities. It also meant layoffs and inventory shortages in coming weeks. “Make sure it reflects sensitivity and compassion,” a key executive urged. A lot of companies continue to do something similar in their respective regions and industries. Their messaging is clear: We’re still open for business,...

Watch What You Say During a Pandemic

In early January, content posted on Teen Vogue’s website began trending on social media, which should have delighted the magazine’s editorial team. The article focused on how Facebook planned to tackle politically-driven misinformation campaigns on its platform. But the article itself was misleading. Though appearing as editorial content, it actually was a paid piece from Facebook. Teen Vogue initially added an editor’s note labeling it as sponsored content. When the controversy failed to die down,...

Creating Sponsored Content People Want to See

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

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