"When eagles are silent, parrots begin to chatter." -Winston Churchill
Nowhere Near Cannes 

Content for the win | Vol. 4, No. 6

We could be in Cannes right now celebrating the amazing creativity that advertising people bring to the craft. But that’s not where I’m at, or what I’m doing. How about you? 

It also occurs to me that there’s no award for the “Ad Grunt” of the year. I think there should be, because the team that is dedicated to winning customers instead of accolades is truly the outstanding performer in the field. 

I read recently about a guy who shelved his agency startup after three years because he hadn’t been able to create award winning work right from the start. That’s his business, of course, but the degree of entitlement, presumption and wrongheadedness that sometimes engulfs otherwise intelligent people is astounding at times. 

Why form and run a professional services business if what you really want to do is operate a trophy shop? My interest here is not in dismissing awards show culture. I did that years ago. My interest is in celebrating the right things. Running a sustainable communications practice is the right thing (for me). Working with clients I respect and whose products and services I care about is the right thing. 

You know what else is the right thing? Email marketing. A
ccording to McKinsey, email remains a significantly more effective way to acquire customers than social media—nearly 40 times that of Facebook and Twitter combined. Plus, the average order value prompted by an email trigger is 17 percent higher.


  1. Who do you task with your firm's content creation and social media marketing? I hope it's someone who earned your trust.
  2. “Farnam Street” by Shane Parrish is a weekly email newsletter I look forward to receiving.
  3. KLM has 150 people dedicated to serving clients via social media and each one of them represents $170,000 in annual revenue for the airline
  4. The Huffington Post picked up a recent AdPulp.com article that I wrote about Coca-Cola and Ogilvy's mastery of integrated marketing. 
  5. "To work on presentation skills is to apply a veneer over a rotting base. It’s not important to present well; it’s important to be present." -Blair Enns
  6. Oops. 43% readers of news sites in the United States have felt disappointed or deceived after reading native ad content that they later discovered was sponsored.
  7. The more diverse a person’s social network, the more likely that person is to be innovative (provided the person identifies, assimilates and exploits new ideas).
  8. Buy my friend Dan Goldgeier's new book, Killer Executions and Scrubbed Decks: An Outside-the-Box Look at Obnoxious Advertising and Marketing Jargon. It's funny.
Bonehook is a guide service and bait shop for brands. We help companies find, shape and share their best brand stories. To charter, call 503-970-3862. 
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Writing copy is like designing a building; the purpose is utilitarian, but utility needn't be an impediment to artfulness.

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