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Wifey’s been eating her lunch for free – courtesy of a new Tech-bro app called Ritual. The incentive to use it is good. You can walk into most places about town, order something, and they pay the first $5. Wifey has a small appetite, so she ends up paying nothing. But is this a business, [...]

I don’t usually write About pages. They’re too broad. Too fluffy. I’m a direct response man. I like getting specific people to take a specific action. And ‘About’ pages, by nature, tend to break the cardinal sin of direct marketing. Which is: ‘make it about your reader, not you.‘ It’s a bit of a Catch22. [...]

“You can see that I’ve spoiled my children. They talk when they should listen.” – Don Corleone, The Godfather Part 1 Robert Collier, one of history’s greatest copywriters, said that in order to persuade you must ‘join the conversation in your prospect’s mind.’ In other words, you should listen first, then respond. It’s also the [...]

“When did I ever refuse an accommodation?” – Vito Corleone, The Godfather Part 1 The other day I replayed an old audio from Clayton Makepeace. Makepeace is (or at least, was) the world’s highest-paid copywriter – earning Mafia-sized money. 7 figures in a year. He said something which got me thinking: Whenever he gives something [...]

“Luca Brasi put a gun to his head, and my father assured him that either his brains or his signature would appear on the contract.” – Michael Corleone, The Godfather Part 1 Wifey told me she still hadn’t seen The Godfather – a wrong I put right last weekend. But I soon realised it had also [...]

A while back I put a deadly dull idea to my agency partners: “Why don’t we set up a ‘Creative Consultation’ service?” I said. “That’ll bring in some more money.” And you know what? It did bring in money. LOTS of money. Because you can spin these consultations into a veiled sales message. Suppose you [...]

My mentor Drayton Bird once told me, “Relevance beats brilliance every day of the week.” I was trying too hard to be a Don-Draper-style creative maverick. Until I realised the simple fact which underpins everything in marketing, I could never get to grips with what he meant: Marketing, first and foremost, is a bridge. You [...]

I’ve just finished reading Simon Garfield’s excellent book, ‘To the Letter’. One of my favourite letter lessons comes from the Alice-In-Wonderland weirdo Lewis Carroll. Carroll, obviously, was a bit different from the crowd. Were he alive today, he’d have said all sorts of crazy things on social media, I’m sure. But he also had a [...]

What Becoming a Drug Dealer Teaches You

I just ploughed some of last year’s savings into “Pot Stocks.” No, I won’t go into detail of where I put the money. This is a creativity/marketing blog, not a finance advisory. (But if you send me an email I’ll tell you). So far so good. My picks just reported decent earnings and saw roughly an 8% [...]

Actually, I hate the term ‘personal brand.’ It sounds like another made-up marketing buzzword to bamboozle people. And who seriously cares? Be honest. Do you give a damn about my personal brand? Do I give a damn about yours? However, I’ve noticed 7 remarkable benefits to having a (cringe) ‘Personal Brand.’ In no particular order: [...]