Sadly, Interesting is More Important than Accurate

Precise language is one of my joys. It’s exhilarating to find exactly the right word that communicates in the best way possible. Which is why it pains me to admit that accuracy isn’t all that important if it’s boring. For marketing communications, you must be interesting first and precise second. To catch a customer’s attention, it’s best […]

Don’t Take Your Marketing Metaphors Too Far

Since I named my small business marketing firm Zoo in a Jungle Marketing, it’s pretty clear that I approve of marketing metaphors. Taken from Peter DeVries’ quote “Life is a zoo in a jungle,” my company name promotes stepping outside the constraining zoo of your immediate business environment into the jungles of possibility. But some […]

Is Your Small Business Tagline Great… or Lackluster?

When a business doesn’t understand its customers or know what’s important to them, it’s tempting to “throw things at the wall to see what sticks.” The result is usually confusing and bland (what a combination!). Check out this supposed tagline on a newsletter I received from an HVAC company: More Choices. No Worries. Less Hassle. Time & Money […]

Ten Great Small Business Names

Small businesses benefit from the joy and luxury of being personality-driven. Also, when you’re small, you can more easily choose a focused strategy to serve a niche market. (Large companies usually need to serve large markets, in order to earn enough revenue.) Here are ten small businesses that embraced these aspects by choosing creative, descriptive […]

Eight Terrible Small Business Names

Small businesses have the great advantage of being unique and full of personality. Your small business’ name should highlight what makes your brand special. But some business owners go too far, try too hard or don’t think about alternate interpretations customers might have. From made-up words to edible children, here are eight examples of terrible small business names: […]

Five Terrible Small Business Marketing Taglines

Positive reinforcement can be very powerful, which is why I wrote Ten Great Small Business Marketing Taglines. But we often remember negative examples more clearly.  Here are five examples of bad small business marketing taglines, along with some tips for every small business. Apollo – Quality Since 1910 What kind of small business do you think Apollo is? […]

Ten Great Small Business Marketing Taglines

Small businesses have many advantages over big businesses– the ability to build real relationships with customers, agility, flexibility, and more. But brand awareness is one area where the big guys excel. They have millions of dollars in marketing budget to educate customers about what they do and just why customers should care. Because of that, a […]

Cookie Monster is Happy Again

A few years ago, in the face of the obesity epidemic, Sesame Street tried to give Cookie Monster a new slogan: “Cookie is a sometimes food.” Cookie Monster bravely faced this new challenge, giving up his favorite phrase, “C is for cookie. That’s good enough for me.” Fans were not so kind. Petitions, blogs and […]

A Marketing Vacation

This week, I’m on vacation at lovely Saint Simons Island, Georgia and thought you deserved a vacation, too. For the next few minutes, let your mind go on a marketing vacation, free from trends (and even good taste), to enjoy some kitschy, old-style marketing entertainment. The Bob Rohrman Auto Group has been producing their trademark, […]

5 Tips for Writing Great Marketing Copy

Although marketers aren’t typically viewed as writers, every aspect of great marketing requires talented writing and precise editing. If there are any doubters, just observe this example from Starbucks: Not only is this poster confusing, it has a glaring typo. The main message– Get $1 off any pastry when you buy a beverage– is overshadowed […]