5 Questions to Ask When Choosing a Web Design Firm

This month, my friend Andy Crestodina of Orbit Media Studios is kindly letting me repurpose a post he wrote for his own blog a few months ago. I think he offers some great advice here, and I often refer my clients to it. From Andy: Full disclosure: I sell websites. Every day, I meet with companies who are looking for a web-design firm, and...

Branding Irrelevance

A while back, I got a call from one of my B2B clients. They said “One of our competitors just came out with a branded product so we need brand names for our products too”. I asked them to tell me a little more about the situation, and they explained: A competitor’s new, branded product met a longstanding unmet need in the...

Defining “Marketing”

It seems like everyone I talk to uses the word “marketing” to mean something different. Often, it’s used interchangeably with the word “selling”. This isn’t surprising, because in the evolution of a company, marketing often begins in the sales department as a tactical support function responsible for generating...

Every company should do these two things even if they don’t use Twitter

So my mother asked me about Twitter last week. My clients often ask me about it, too. They’ve heard the buzz, aren’t really sure what it is, but are concerned that they’re missing out on a great tactic. My first response to most questions about tactics is to refer back to the company’s brand strategy. If a tactic...

Marketing tagline lessons from Children’s Memorial Hospital

Fact: A great tagline is hard to write. Now, okay ones are pretty easy to come up with, and I have clients all the time who try to save money by tackling this task themselves. But there’s a tangible difference between the poetry of one written by a trained professional using a clear positioning statement, and one written by a well-meaning...

AT&T: How to not measure customer satisfaction

I had one of those circle-of-hell phone calls with AT&T last week. I worked with 3 separate individuals, 2 of whom were great and one who put me on hold for 30 full minutes. A few days later, I received an automated satisfaction survey via telephone. The survey assumed that I had only worked with one AT&T employee. There was therefore no...

Ho Ho Holiday e-cards

I’ve been receiving more holiday e-cards than usual this year, no doubt due primarily to the economy, but I’m happy trees are being saved, regardless of the reason. Two cards I’ve received really stand out. One is a 100% direct, awesome viral marketing hit. So great, in fact, that this is the second year it’s run, and it...