Content marketing: Telling Meaningful Stories

Even conversations with one-word “sentences” can lead to miscommunication 


November 13, 2016

Customer service, Words

In case anyone forgot how easy miscommunication actually is, here’s an example.  I bought something at a store. “Receipt?” the cashier asked.  “Yup.” “Okay, bye. Have a great day.” “Can I get my receipt?” Yup. I guess my yup sounded like a nope? Maybe I do pronounce my yeses in a no kind of way. […]

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Changing language: How do you push “any button” on the Apple Watch during phone calls?

The language we use can evolve because: People accept and use what used to be wrong. (Singular “their” anyone? Journalists can now use “over” instead of “more than” as another example). Technology evolves and what we just said doesn’t work anymore. I’ll focus on technology here today, though, I realize point No. 1 would likely […]

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Don’t fake it until you make it but grow into it 

During a 2016 speech at a marketing conference I shared the story of a football coach who told me to appear confident even if I wasn’t. If other players didn’t think I was confident of my call as a center, they may lose trust. A valid concern. After I shared that story somebody said: “it […]

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How many characters do you have in an Instagram caption before the MORE button shows?

Instagram, the photo-sharing app owned by Facebook, is a network organizations and people should pay attention to. Its user-base has been growing and personally I love how it encourages people to share photos – authentic ones, I hope. And you can’t even include links in photo posts so it’s less about clicking and more about […]

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[HEALTHCARE] What do we call people before they become patients? 


June 14, 2016

Health, Words

As I’m continuing to think about the future of storytelling, content marketing and other digital marketing strategies as they relate to population health and healthcare marketing I wondered if we’re missing a word to describe patients before they become patients.  Recommended reading: Population health and storytelling What value-based care means to me  Currently, physicians have […]

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When people jump to conclusions … 

It’s oh so easy to jump to conclusions and to assume we know how other people will react and what they are thinking. Of course, the problem with jumping is we might not land in the right place. Our conclusions are based on guesses, gut feelings, our attitude toward our relationship with the other people […]

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If customers don’t agree with your “improvement” it’s not actually an improvement 

I was on the phone with a service I really enjoyed after they had increased rates by over 200 percent.  That’s crazy in itself, right?  So I tried to find out what would have prompted that kind of rate increase. It certainly wasn’t inflation. They were really nice on the phone and answered my questions. […]

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[CONTENT CREATION] How long should blog posts be?

Many content producers are looking for the answer to this question: How many words should a good blog post have? The answers and studies vary. People have documented all kind of trends when it comes to organic search, frequency of posts being shared, emailed, the number of visits… and the list goes on. And what have the experts […]

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Let’s not give buzzwords a bad name here


February 26, 2016

Strategies, Words

Sometimes when I start blabbing about authentic storytelling, I get interrupted (when it’s offline) or people start commenting and responding (when it’s online): “Oh yea, storytelling. It’s the latest buzzword.” Sometimes people will start a debate on “what’s wrong with the way people used to share their message?” And even: “Why do we now have […]

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[CONTEXT] Oh no, kids are being told “no” more than “yes”


February 21, 2016


I’ve seen a number of studies and comments now on children hearing way more “no” from their parents (and others) than they hear “yes.” This has often been shared as a sign that the parents are oh so not empowering their children. Bad, bad parents! Oh, please, but no. Ha. Maybe there’s truth to the numbers, […]

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“I’m excited to present this post to you.” [It’s OK when it’s meant]


January 30, 2016

Social media, Words

You’ve heard me share my displeasure with people using phrases like this in their news releases, product announcements and – yes – social media posts: We are excited to …. We are pleased to … We are thrilled to announce… And then the announcement of some new development, hire, change or something else follows. I […]

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#wordsmatter: Storyteller over content creator and other marketing words that should be changed 

When I grew up with the hopes of becoming a journalist the term content creator never even crossed anyone’s mind. Neither did storyteller. Journalists practiced journalism and marketers marketed. Even though, content marketing was already being practiced by several organizations the term was not yet widely used for around another 20 years. When I practiced […]

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Who said that? People want to know…

I’ve heard the following about you recently. What follows is never positive. Sometimes it’s not even constructive. So we ask: Who said it? And the response is that the other person either doesn’t know or says that the name can’t be released. But we often want to, need to know who said it. If we don’t, […]

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