Posts in category: Communications

Creativity and useless feedback

The Angry Aussie had an interesting post on Unsolicited Advice. The two points that stood out for me were: Creativity is innate. It is personal and driven from within. “It is extremely rare that any worthwhile act of creation is triggered by someone telling you what...

Doubt and advocacy

A “Northwestern University [study has] found that when people’s confidence in their beliefs is shaken, they become stronger advocates for those beliefs.” In other words, the more we challenge someone’s beliefs (even with observable and provable facts to the contrary),...
Good intention; not-quite-there execution

Good intention; not-quite-there execution

“Wouldn’t it be great for our customers to know more about our staff as real people?” said the boss of a funeral parlour. “Yes!” said everyone else. They began collecting stories. They spent weeks extracting and fine-tuning the most interesting line or two about...
Traffic lights: modern-look usability fail

Traffic lights: modern-look usability fail

All of us are probably familiar with the ubiquitous traffic light configuration shown below left. When I was in China several years ago, I noticed a new “modern-look” configuration (below right) installed everywhere in the new technology city of Teda. Does...

Advertising facts vs emotion; then and now

Compare and contrast: When a product (or service) is first-in-market, the advertising is more infomercial than commercial. There is more education or informing involved than selling. Or put another way, the features sell the product. Lots of facts. Lots of...

New resource: Audiences with Different Levels of Knowledge

Adapting your communications to different audiences? How much fact should you present? How much tempering do you need to do to the material? And how much (and what sort of) emotive content do you need to wrap the whole thing up in? Find out in Tailor Communications...

Your tagline, meet unintended context

I was stuck in a spectacular jam on the freeway recently for almost an hour. During one of the slower-than-walking-pace oozes forward, I spotted what looked like a local government truck parked on the emergency lane, with this tagline printed on its side: “We make it...
What is this ad selling?

What is this ad selling?

This ad’s closing shot has always annoyed me. The composition of the (very brief) closing shot focused primarily on the computer, which really had nothing to do with what the ad is selling. This was probably intended to say “online” but failed as the shot angle...
The foundation of authentic communications

The foundation of authentic communications

Source: Barbara, CC BY 2.0, via Flickr Authenticity cuts through spin Authentic communications is essential for business success today. It removes the facade of unimpeachable and fake perfection, and allows us to see each other as humans once more. Authenticity is the...

Understanding your audience

The three truths: Everyone wants to be heard. Everyone wants to be acknowledged. Everyone wants to feel valued. Listen Speak from your customers’ side of the table. It is about them. Feel their needs and pains. There is no other way to truly understand. Show you...

Starting conversations

Most businesses are great at talking at customers, but crap at listening. Conversations with your customers give you valuable information and builds intimacy. Your existing “talking at customers” channels can be adapted to start conversations. The web: Do you let...
The fox and his credit cards

The fox and his credit cards

What comes to mind when you think of a fox? A mischievous, cunning, sly trickster, who relies on his intelligence and wiles to outsmart larger, stronger rivals perhaps? Bankwest’s site describes Fox thus: “He’s clever, quick-witted and financially...
If we could hear ourselves

If we could hear ourselves

Sometimes I catch myself saying sh*t to my cat. Like “Who’s my precious?” (Embarrassing I know…) And often I get this look: “What’s wrong with you, human? If I were really your precious you’d shut up and feed me.” Which...
The Bios Urn

The Bios Urn

“The Bios Urn project reintroduces the human being to the natural circle of life.” It is a 100% biodegradable cremation urn that comes with a tree seed and is intended to be buried with the remains of your loved one. And over time, a tree will grow from it. I really...

Defining “Structure”, “Processes” and “Systems”

Structure: inanimate organisation like a building, a database design, the laws of physics. Processes: the things that happen inside a building, the acts of adding and changing data inside a database, the interactions between objects and life forms. Systems = Structure...

Breaking down barriers by getting people together

Better collaboration, more understanding, more authentic communications, less conflict … all these can be had if we work to enable empathy and understanding within organisations. Seriously. Getting people together is the key I think. When we don’t know anyone from a...

Your Singapore Get Lost

I was at the movies this week and saw this somewhat odd ad selling tourism in Singapore. I am sure they were not intending on audience participation, such as calling out “get stuffed” in response to their “get lost.” The ad came across as...
When is 4G not 4G?

When is 4G not 4G?

When Apple calls their new iPad “4G LTE” when it can’t operate as a 4G device at all outside of five networks in the US and Canada. From the Apple website (screengrab above), The 4G moniker was clearly used as a means to differentiate the...

Texting makes you stupid

University of Calgary researcher Joan Lee has shown that using textisms makes you stupid. Textism – sometimes also called lingo – is the use of “pneumonic devices or shortening of words into text form such as LOL, OMG, TTYL, L8R, H8, luv, ect.” (From the...
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