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June 2013
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August 2013

Lies, Chipotle & Twitter

Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications has been a Twitter user Dead Bird for...years @InsightADV is for our agency as well as for Insight on Business - The News Hour.  We're not new to the world of social media and the tricks brands and bots can play on Twitter.  Often folks like to pick at various issues and suggest that Twitter is DOA.

Recently Molly McHugh wrote a piece for Digital Trends, "Chipotle, The Product of a System: Lying, Liers, and the Nature of Ambition". In it she writes about the "self-hacking" effort Chipotle did in the hope of drawing more followers to their feed.  It's been done before and no doubt will again.

What we thought was interesting was what she said about Twitter being like "high school": "Twitter is also a lot like a gossipy, cruel high school classroom full of cheaters, liars and manipulators."  Seriously Molly?

We find Twitter to be an excellent news tool and while there are "cheaters, liars and manipulators" within its ranks that does not take away from the value it presents.  Frankly, Molly sounds more like a disgruntled CEO who distrusts new media and waves it off as a waste of time.

Our recommendation to business is that you build your reputation and your customer base on being open and honest.  Twitter is a fantastic way in which you can do just that.  The Chipotle incident can be, we think, explained away as what a sophomoric person thought was funny, cute or ground-breaking and it was just...dumb.  And...there is plenty of that to go around in the non-digital world as well.



You can hook up with us on our Twitter Feed @InsightADV and/or our Facebook Page which is right here.  Thanks for coming by!


Using Video...Well

Years ago I met Karen McCullough as we were "joint speaking" to a group in Florida.  I have followed her career as a public speaker and she has done very, very well.

The other day I got an email from her company pointing me to this nifty video about "technology".  Here, take a minute and have a look:


We passed it around the office and the resounding response was, "Very cool how they used great edits to add interest to the video."


Karen McCollugh screen snapThat's the difference.  You can put up a video and drone on and folks lose interest but when you professionally weave various elements, change the angle and use sound. It works...well.  This is what happens when you employ professionals to help build your brand and we love it.

One other thing:  Karen uses email marketing to push her brand.  Here is a screen grab of her recent July news letter.  What we like about it is she uses few words, keeps to one point and offers up some action steps.

Once works.

Some good ideas for you and your business and, if you're looking for a speaker for your next event try Karen.  Here is her site you won't be sorry.




If you want to respond here, feel free!  And/Or let's connect on our advertising agency Twitter Stream @InsightADV and here is our agency Facebook Page.  Thanks for coming by!


Insight on Business - Radio Broadcast Launch

For the past several years I've hosted a web based news show with a focus on advertising, marketing and business.  The platform has been over at Webcast One LIVE and it's been a fantastic experience. Here is a sample:


Early this year our firm, Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications, was hired by the City of Urbandale to write and produce interesting content revolving around the slogan, "Uniquely Urbandale".  During the past several months we crafted news stories about diversity, taxes, infrastructure and international trade.  The result, no media outlet within the Des Moines Metro took a sniff.

That led us to the conclusion that the business community and economic development doesn't rate high on the list of priorities for local news outlets. Save for the occasional Iowa Economic Development Authority story the news about the business of business...small, medium and large doesn't exist especially among broadcasters.

MPL KRNT 1 WEBWe're changing that...

Insight on Businss the News Hour will debut in August as a news and information program on 1350 KRNT and air Monday - Friday between 5PM and 6PM offering listeners a full hour of business and economic news spanning the Des Moines Metro and surrounding area.  Interviews, stocks of local interest, news stories...all on the air and on the Net.

We could have sat around and grumbled that there is a lack of interest in our economic drivers.  However, seeing that there is a lack of service compelled us to find a way to deliver the news that grows the metro.  Joined by our producer Peter Tarpey and technical director Jimmy Olsen I'm confident we're in for a great time.

Thanks for your early support and encouragement.


Just Say "No"

It's a blog about advertising, marketing and communication for business from our business Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications. How about that...

Last week we were visiting with a young marketer from a well known Man Undecidedbusiness in Des Moines who told us, "We're pulling all of our traditional advertising in favor of search engine optimization (SEO) and search engine marketing (SEM)."  That's right.  No television, radio, print, billboards...nada.  Going all digital.

Great Idea or Train Wreck?

While we love SEO and SEM we also believe that putting all your eggs in one basket is a train wreck in the making.  Why?

Because pulling everything from traditional media leaves your existing customers lost.  While we would all like to believe that every consumer is sitting down in front of a PC, tablet or smart-phone surfing the world for stuff they need/ isn't reality.

We would have advised, had they asked, a complete review of what traditional media the company has been using and what media outlets fit their specific demographic.  Cut out what does not fit and then use those marketing dollars to work the SEO/SEM side of the business.  That way you don't lose the top of mind awareness of your existing customer or the "almost customer" who needs the priming to make a buy.

Feel free to leave us a comment here or let's connect on our Twitter Feed @InsightADV and our Facebook Page is right here.



Smells Like....

Long before Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications I had a Garlic Bunch July 2013 hand in...farming.  For real.  Born and raised in Detroit the journey to the farm field was...different.  Once settled in we raised cattle, hogs, chickens, corn, hay and a two acre garden.

But we never, to my memory, grew garlic.

Last fall we went to Farm Crawl 2012 and picked up some "Hard-Neck Garlic" seed bulbs and promptly planted them.  Now what?

This spring I asked our friend, organic farmer, Larry Cleverley of Cleverley Farms, "OK Garlic Scapes 2013now what?"

He told me to make sure I cut off the "Scapes" once they emerged. "What's a garlic scape?"

"The little flower stalk that emerge in June.  When you cut that off it sends the power to the garlic bulb." (The "scape" is the little bulb to the left of the garlic "fruit".)

So, I tried it and damn if Larry wasn't right.  Here is a photo of the difference between a garlic bulb that did not have the scape cut off (r) and one that did.  I like to think of it as my "control plant". Garlic Size 2013

I did not know about growing garlic...even though I had been a farmer.  I asked an expert and he told me the what to do.  It's sort of like advertising and marketing.  Most business do it...but do they really  Guess when you want to go from small to big...ask an expert?




Thanks for coming by! If you want to leave a comment here, feel free. And/Or let's connect on our advertising agency Twitter Stream @InsightADV and our agency Facebook Page which is right here

"It's, like, really cool!"

We were sitting in a business meeting the other day when a young lady Social Media Hands was explaining her business to the folks sitting down for lunch. "Oh, we do all sorts of things including social media work for our clients. Social Media?  You don't know?  It's, like, really cool!"

And the assembled folks nodded in agreement. 

Trouble is I know most of the people in the room and fewer than 10% of them use any form of social media for their business.  What is the disconnect?

Age & Time.

The young lady who was speaking represented the 25 - 30 year-old demographic.  Her audience was made up of people 45+ who are not afraid of social media...they just don't get it.

That's not a's reality.  For many business owners something that is "free" is not valuable and, after all, social media is...."free".

Sort of...

In our experience most small businesses have very little of the capital it takes to become truly engaged in social media.  That capital is...time.  So rather than invest in the learning curve, which can be steep, they make the decision to stay with what they know which is 1) Word of mouth; 2) Buy Google Ad Words; 3) Use traditional media.

So, how do you break that mold?




If you want to leave us a comment here, feel free.  And/Or let's connect on our advertising agency Twitter Stream @InsightADV and our agency Facebook Page is right here.

Thanks for coming by!

Good Enough to Eat?

One of the things we do at Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications is create packaging for our clients. It's more Tide Pods Packaging than just slapping on some text and a photo it takes time, research and some talent to create a design that consumers gravitate toward.

Sometimes it works too well.

Proctor & Gamble Co. has had to redesign the packaging for Tide Pods because (ready?) were eating the detergent.  It seems that poison centers had seen an uptick in the number of calls saying kids had ingested pod detergent products made by various companies.  Why?  Because the packaging made them look like candy...right down to the container that resembled a candy bowl.

Now that is packaging!

When the products started appearing on the shelves we thought to ourselves, "Great packaging but it looks like something to eat!"  Funny nobody at P&G and other firms noticed.

The new packaging will be opaque and the pods from P&G will be less "colorful" in an attempt to dissuade kids from popping a pod in their mouths.

The power of packaging...




If you would like to leave a comment, feel free. And/Or you can join our advertising agency on our Twitter Stream @InsightADV and our Facebook Page is right here

Five in Twenty Four - Tips for Business

We've all been to those seminars where the speaker offers up some lofty Five in Twenty Four Image goals/projects and, at the time, we tell ourselves we're going to get to them...when we have time.

We figured out most business owners/managers would appreciate simple, easy to do, tips on advertising and marketing so we came up with "Five in Twenty-Four" - Five things any business can accomplish within twenty-four hours which will have a dramatic impact on their marketing footprint.

This week I traveled to Webster City, Iowa to speak with members of the Chamber of Commerce.  Did they learn anything?


Thank you Deb Brown, Chamber Executive, for the invite.  BTW the Kendall Young Library is BEAUTIFUL!




If you would like to leave a comment here, feel free.  And/Or let's connect on our Twitter Stream @InsightADV and our advertising agency Facebook Page is right here.