Archive | Business communication

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Email PR

Yet another naval-gazing award ceremony took place last week where BSkyB were claimed Britain’s Most Admired Company from Management Today. Clearly, MT’s judges didn’t base the trophy on Sky’s email campaigns. If they had, MT wouldn’t discover personal, relevant and timed messages – their emails are more like blanket mini-billboards. Every week or so Sky […]

Are you a Manager or Multiplexer?

I was asked this week, ‘What does a manager really do?’ It was a fairly innocuous, rhetorical, jovial question from a well-paid, senior person. The graduate switch flicked and I immediately thought, ‘seeing that the company’s goals are met’. After all, it’s the leader’s job to define and create those goals and aims, and it’s […]

First impressions

Most people think the saying ‘first impressions count’ is all about clothes or hair. They’re wrong (to a degree). It’s more about attitude than anything else. How you carry yourself when you enter the room; how you interact in the opening few seconds; your handshake; your eye contact; your confidence. It’s the X Factor test. […]

Dixons goes nuclear in ad war

Plenty has been said about Dixons’ comparison ads lately. They’re a blatant come-on aimed squarely at John Lewis, Harrods and Selfridges. They invite consumers to research with their competitors and then convert to Dixons for stronger pricing. This is primarily a drive for Dixons’ website, with their retail sites only operating at airports. The strapline […]

Social media is the new radio

I recently heard comedian Frank Skinner being interviewed by Dermot O’Leary on his Radio Two show. Skinner, former host of his own guest TV show which ran for six years, said that TV is rather unreal. With his makeup applied, his shirt choice amended to avoid a camera clash, specific timing, outtakes, warm ups, breaks, […]

The holy trinity of business

John Battelle recently said, ‘Marketing is now like moving quicksilver. The marketer is the publisher and visa versa; the consumer is now both… that we should rethink, ‘our brand in the market’ as, ‘our conversation with the market.’ I’d like to chirp a complimentary point about synergy with product (otherwise it’s all about the sell […]

Audi applies Technik

Audi is on the change. Silas Amos over at JKR Design blog praises their logo touch up and I agree. They’ve applied some Photoshop botox to rejuvenate their concentric circles and the font choice has been modernised. Not particularly noticable now but, when viewed on a timeline, the amendments/path of change becomes significant. Check out […]

Tweeting frustration

Just read Tom Asacker’s post on frustration and I needed to rebroadcast: Marketers, we need you now, more than ever, to be the voice of value creation for the benefit of your organizations and other brand constituents (customers, suppliers, communities, et al). So please don’t let the frustration, and persistence, of the Social Web ecosystem […]

4 principles of site design

A while ago, I had the pleasure of listening to Google’s Robert Swerling talk saliently about site design. The brief version of his presentation: Velocity – give it fast and let them get on with other things Visibility – don’t surprise consumers Value – provide real value Variation – never come out of beta (love […]

Facebook faux pas

The Times is reporting on a modern classic. The Facebook faux pas is a recent phenomenon witnessed too closely by the head of MI6 as he was outed by his wife on her Facebook wall. From the piece: …entries by his [Sir John Sawers’] wife Shelley on the social networking site have exposed potentially compromising […]

Open letters and airplanes

Dustin Curtis was so appalled by his experience at American Airlines’ website that he drew up a redesign and sent them an open letter. I did exactly the same thing recently. My aunt’s ouiji board is more in touch with web design and best practice than what a company had created for a young, energetic […]

The ascending of Adam & Eve

Adam & Eve are on the up. Not only did they win the John Lewis account earlier this year, but the ‘young communications company’ has also secured the enviable task of creatives at Williams F1. What an exciting and innovative client Williams F1 will be. Still, you can’t help but wonder what their view of […]

Mind Map software review

I love making lists. Of course it’s nothing compared to the palpable pleasure of completion by crossing tasks off. But if you want to get multiple and complex lists out of their silos, you’re looking at making a mind map. You can botch these together in Word, Powerpoint or even Excel if you’re determined enough, […]

Is feedback for fools?

At first, ‘How did we do?’ sounds like a question designed around self-improvement, right? Wrong. It’s usually a worthless platitude on par with a client/supplier asking, ‘How are you?’ They don’t care that you had toothache or a head cold last month and that your fridge packed up last night. The overriding majority of people […]

Let down gently

Your supplier is very busy. You know this because you chased your order and were told so with plenty of excuses and apologies. I’ve always subscribed to the theory that if a customer phones you for an update on completion, you’ve failed. Not in a ‘call the administrators sense,’ but in a service world, the […]

Ramsay screams success

A business is an organic entity. Most stakeholders would wish their company to ‘grow’ but it can be ‘starved’ of orders, ‘bleed’ cash and ‘haemorrhage’ profits. Yet the biggest indicator of its living matter is the fact that people make a company (well, certainly the vast majority). The attitude of staff is the telling piece […]

Viral marketing double act

Viral campaigns are an enigma. Word of mouth is, by definition, viral, but marketers want much more bang for their brand communicating buck. How can you spread your ‘message’ by engaging users (and potential clients) exponentially without devaluing your brand or using slapstick comedy? Few marketers can claim to have pulled this business magic trick […]

Santa did good

The visiting is done, so is the postman and the elves have earned their holiday. Yesterday saw the last of the gifts depart/arrive and I realised you know when people have really thought about you when your book tally outnumbers the smellies you’ve received. With a couple of leftovers from last year, I’ve now got […]

Write like Ayrton Senna

The best advice anyone’s giving me regarding clearer communication is to write as Aryton Senna drove: fast. Take the shortest route and get there as quickly as possible. Remove all excess baggage. When done, look back and see if you can go even quicker. That leads me to ask how did this badly written nonsense […]