Stop. Now read the next two questions.

Who am I? And why am I here?

These are the questions that circled through my mind as I read Ad Age this morning, as has become my habit to do just about every morning.

I especially love the “Small Agency Diary” articles because most of the things they talk about are experiences we’ve all had in the marketing world. It’s like my pals in Ad Age land have been spending time right here in our office.

But all I could think about as I read Derek Walker’s blog post this morning, “Who are you and why are you here?” was how would I answer that question?

It’s such a simple thing. A straightforward and direct request. Who are you? And now that I start to think about it, Derek is right in his point. You go to so many advertisers and marketers’ websites, and you get no idea about who they really are. What is their perspective and their raison d’etre? What do they think is their most powerful offering?

For goodness sakes, give us a little personality! I mean, as marketers we’re supposed to build brands and deliver messages for our clients. If we can’t tell you who we are and why we’re so special, how could you ever trust us with your own company’s image?

So with all of this reflection I digress. I take a step back to the MOS website and take a fresh look at how we represent ourselves as a company, as individuals, as creatives. And again I ask, Who am I? And why am I here?

Must See – Funny Spoof on Death of Ad Agencies

Thanks to FITC for this clever but eerily relevant sci-fi scenario of the death of the last ad agency on earth. The thing is – they pretty much hit the nail on the head. Many “creative firms” are scared to actually get creative any more. And that, my friends, may be the death of them.

Why? Because consumers’ media habits and access to that media are changing rapidly. We’re not the same captive audience that we used to be. If you’re familiar with the acronyms TiVo and DVR, or you’ve ever been exposed to a YouTube video, then my point has been made.

Effective marketing today has got to be about not doing the same old stuff. It’s got to be about STANDING OUT. We’ve been saying it for a long, long time. Still not convinced? Watch this video! You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, it’ll become a part of you.

SEO Copywriting: 5 guidelines to help your ranking

SEO, search rankingOne thing you learn quick in our industry is that designing and developing a beautiful site is one thing. But if it doesn’t rank anywhere in the search engines and no one can find it, it doesn’t do you or anyone else any good.

That’s why we explain to our clients that Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is such a crucial part of promoting their site.

Yes, they can direct clients to the site, or even pay for online advertising, but one of the most rewarding and effective leads is from an organic search.

I know there’s a lot of talk about SEO, but even a lot of our colleagues in the marketing industry are still novices in the practice (not that there’s anything wrong with that).

Here’s a few tips from a really helpful article by Brian Clark on CopyBlogger with 5 guidelines for SEO copywriting success. (Read full article)

  1. Title. Identify target keywords and include them in the title of your content. “The closer to the front of the title your keywords are, the better,” Clark notes.
  2. Meta Description. Though it’s debatable whether keywords in your meta description influence rank, Clark observes that SEO copywriting is also about the presentation of your content in a search engine. “Try to keep the meta description under 165 characters, so the full description is visible in the search result,” he advises.
  3. Content. To make search engines happy, Clark says, use unique and frequently updated content (at least 300 words), “tightly on-topic and centered on the subject matter of the desired keyword phrases.”
  4. Keyword Frequency. Keyword frequency is the number of times your targeted keywords appear on the page. Keyword repetition affects ranking, but don’t over-do it, Clark cautions, or Google might penalize your page.
  5. Page Links. Link to relevant content early in the body copy. Other suggestions: Link to relevant pages every 120 words or so; link to relevant interior pages (not just home pages); and link using naturally relevant anchor text.

Stop doing the same old, well, you know

OK, so poop jokes aren’t exactly new, but we were trying to make a point here. The point being that marketing today is about really pushing the envelope. It’ s about not just getting creative, but about being getting people’s attention by being different – extreme and outlandish, even. Because if your marketing is none of these things I’ve just described, well then you’re just doing the same old s#!%.

The magazine ad that’s getting attention

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How to write a press release

Topics. Topics. Topics.

The most important lesson in PR is that your release must be news worthy. If you are submitting your release to free online directories, and I suggest that you do, your release will be reviewed for its newsworthiness. Blatant, self-promoting releases that scream ‘advertisement’ are quickly discarded in this news arena.

Topics that are news worthy:

  • Website launch
  • Product launch
  • Announcements (new hires, promotions, awards)
  • Event announcements

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