ishmaels corner

Archive: November 2019

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The Wonders of the “Word Visual” and a Thanksgiving Story

I first touted the virtues of the “word visual” in 2014. For those not familiar with this technique, the idea is to use the words (or typography) to drive the action while minimizing the need for design expertise. The image above borrowing the Soup Nazi from Seinfeld falls in the “word visual” category. Most “word …more

Should Publications Try to Fool the Reader?

The obvious answer is no, but perhaps a more nuanced view should rule the day. Maybe it’s OK — dare I say helpful — to fool the reader, if by doing so, the publication serves up information that the reader cares about. I raise the issue after stumbling across sponsored content on UC Davis’ approach …more

“Oops” Alone No Longer Differentiates 404 Pages

Every interaction with the customer offers a brand-building opportunity. This is particularly true for B2B companies that tend to pay less attention to the squishy things in life. Simply using conversational language that sounds like it comes from an actual human being — “Going from Point A to Point B to Point C gets you …more

I’m Guessing You Have Never Seen a Birthday Card Quite Like This One

It’s that time of year, prompting me to dust off my favorite birthday card. My granddaughter Addy served as both copywriter and designer of the card. In the spirit of full disclosure, she crafted this card some time ago, and I have posted about it before. Still, if TBS can show “It’s A Wonderful Life” …more

WeChat Campaign in China Offers Glimpse into the Future of Communications

  This headline and the post below appeared five years ago. Well, the future has officially arrived. Our China team is now building self-contained campaigns around WeChat every week, some of which are designed for lead generation. Think of these campaigns as social CRM or if you insist SCRM. The New York Times created a …more