How to ruin your new campaign without realising it

An error marketers sometimes make when judging creative work. The other day an agency asked me to do something odd. They wanted me to rewrite the endline of a new campaign that was at concept stage. It was strange because I reckoned the existing one was very good. So did they. Unfortunately their client didn’t. […]

How to be more original with less

Black Sabbath guitarist Tony Iommi doesn’t have 10 fingers. He lost the ends of two of them in an accident. Since then he’s had to play in an unusual style, which has helped give his band its distinctive sound. In Iran, there is widespread censorship. To find ways around it, film makers there have to […]

Improve your marketing in 60 seconds

Imagine you have to stand up in front of a crowd and tell them about your business. You have 60 seconds to explain what you do. And why people should buy your product or use your service. You need to be persuasive. And make your audience remember you. So what are you going to say? […]

Choosing a name for your brand

A long time ago a businessman came to me for advice. He was starting a men’s clothing store and wanted to know what to call it. I asked him his surname. “George.” “That’s a great name,” I said. “George. The name of kings.” I didn’t tell him it was also my dog’s name. He shook […]

What hasn’t changed in 350 years of advertising?

Modern marketing seems so different from older forms, doesn’t it? With things like social media and content marketing, it’s easy to believe that advertising has changed fundamentally. But has it really? On the left is something interesting I stumbled across the other day. You can enlarge it by clicking here. It looks like an old […]

The new business opportunities right in front of you

Do you spend too much time trying to get new customers, when you could use it more effectively winning it from existing ones? Some years ago I was freelancing at a big, famous agency. I noticed they never seemed to pitch and I thought perhaps they’d lost their edge and were failing to get on […]

5 examples of packaging copy I wish I’d written

According to research, shoppers make an average of 70% of their purchasing decisions at the point of sale.* That gives marketers a brilliant opportunity to turn those people into customers in the store. The trouble is, retailers won’t always let you advertise on in-store posters or shelf wobblers. So what can you do? Look at […]

Four tips to help you avoid producing junk mail

No one should write, produce or have to receive junk mail. It wastes marketing budgets, not to mention precious natural resources. And it annoys vast numbers of recipients who aren’t interested in what’s on offer. The following is an account of an experience I had. I hope it will help you prevent your direct mail […]