Advertising

“Safe advertising is the riskiest advertising you can do.”
– Bill Bernbach, Co-founder, BBD Advertising Agency

In my book, Branding Insights for Small Business, I point out that creativity is marketing’s most underutilized tool. An ad, brochure or website is just a delivery method for a sales message – it’s the creativity in that message that most determines how effectively it performs!

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And how they get your emails opened and read.



I’m sure you’ve all seen articles on how to write a killer email that will inspire your readers to take action—whether that’s buying your products and services, making a charitable donation, signing up for your newsletter, or filling out a form to learn more.

But what happens if your readers don’t even open your email?

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Good News for Websites in 2014

by Claire Kaler, K2 Communications Inc

In the ever-changing world of the WWW, this is a great time to evaluate your website. Content Management Systems (CMS) are better then ever. A CMS can allow you to easily:

  • Make updates and changes
  • Write blogs
  • Add videos and photos
  • The use of WordPress CMS has made it possible to have many features incorporated into your site for a reasonable budget, where in the past they would have had to be custom coded and very expensive.

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    But It Tells a Better Story With A Caption

    Even a copywriter like me can understand the power of visual images in marketing. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words. But far too often, clients display stunning photographs of their work without captions. Why would you want to make readers guess at what they’re looking at?

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    Several years ago I was calling on a well-known local hotel, with a popular nightclub attached. I had already sold the manager wine glasses, etched with the establishment’s well-designed logo for the club area only a few weeks before. Surprisingly the supply had already depleted. Thinking there had been some sort of colossal accident in the back room, I asked how he had managed to go through 200 glasses in only two weekends.

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    As entrepreneurs, many of us are gun shy about telling our customers what to do. We believe in letting them make their own purchasing decisions when they are good and ready.

    It may sound egotistical, but if you’re confident in your ability to deliver a high-quality product or service, why let your competitors beat you to the bargaining table? Many businesses leave the decision-making entirely up to the prospective customer, but it doesn’t have to be that way.

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    When I was in journalism school, we students always posed the same question upon receiving a writing assignment: How long should the piece be? One professor – whose sauciness seemed charming back then – put it memorably:

    “The right length for a story is also the right length for a woman’s skirt: Long enough to cover the subject and short enough to be interesting.” (I learned later that he apparently was paraphrasing Lord Arthur James Balfour, a Scottish statesman and philosopher of the early 20th century.)

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    A sell sheet is a high-impact, single-page presentation of your core capabilities, customer benefits, and contact information. It is a smart way to get your brand into the customer’s hands without the bulk or expense of a brochure.

    When you think about it, sell sheets are a lot like superheroes.
    Superheroes build their reputations around one or two specific qualities – strength, speed, ability to climb walls – and sell sheets highlight one or two specific services.

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    Privacy is, and always has been, something that needs to be taken very seriously. People will only return to or do business with sites they trust. This means that while a website can track everything, it does not mean that it should. In fact, several large media sites have recently been sued over the use of “flash cookies,” which can be used to identify returning site visitors even after the user has deleted their standard cookies.

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    Cutting Edge Video Marketing

    by Michael Lomb, MG Lomb Advertising, Inc.

    The Buzz
    Many professionals today are fond of hyping-up the term “video marketing”. This hype has resulted in both good and bad results. On the good, more companies are taking advantage of impressive interactive web based tools that save them money and improve sales. On the bad, the term video marketing has been slung around so much it’s difficult to know what it really is or how to use it. As a long time developer of interactive web based content, I see video marketing as much more than just “video”. As return on investment goes, this is an important fact.

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    The London Gigapixel Story Writing Competition

    by Walter Ketcham

    Shot from the top of the Centre Point Building (36 stories high) in central London over three days last summer, photographer Jeffrey Martin stitched together 7,886 individual photos into an amazing 80-gigapixel panorama that can be zoomed in and out for a view of London that captures, not only its overall grandeur, but intimate details […]

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    How Ink is Made

    For the Love of Ink

    by Walter Ketcham

    “Ink-making is a science… ink-making is my life.” — Peter Welfare, President, The Printing Inc Co. Canadian Ink manufacturer, The Printing Ink Company has put out this engrossing, lyrical corporate video about how they produce Pantone quality Ink for Printers. Sit back, relax and enjoy How Ink Is Made Directed & Edited by Tate Young […]

    Words That Sell: Power-Up Your Written Communication

    by Sally Bacchetta

    In business communications, the power of words lies in their capacity to change behavior. Whatever your objectives, you can achieve more by choosing words that sell…

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    Writing for the Web

    by Sally Bacchetta

    Writing for the web is the same as any other type of writing, except that it’s different.

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    brain toniq 4 pack

    Brain Power in a Can With Smart Packaging

    by Bill Wynkoop

    “Out of the mouths of babes…” is an idiom that every parent is well acquainted with. Even so, it can still surprise you when it’s your child that is mouthing that darnedest thing. Such was the case for me in a recent exchange with my seven-year-old boy when he asked me how come I wasn’t […]

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    Slide Packs

    Sweet Treats That Are Neat: The Lure of the Package

    by Bill Wynkoop

    When the slide blister packs for gum hit the market, almost overnight the entire category shifted into variations of this package. So much so, that now it seems to be the standard for the entire category…

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