What do customers choose over price AND convenience?

Hand moving a smiling wooden block forward

What do customers choose over price AND convenience?

Customer experience.

This hit home for me recently while I was sitting in the dentist’s chair waiting to have a crown replaced. I had some time to kill while my left cheek and gums were numbed, and I was marveling over the fact that, while having ANY kind of work done on my mouth ranks among my top two LEAST favorite things to do, I go out of my way to see this particular dentist. Over two hundred miles and almost 5 hours roundtrip, to be exact.

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Are you solving the right problem?


Are you solving the right problem? It’s a question few stop to ask before diving in head first in an attempt to demonstrate action and produce results.

The trouble with that approach is that the surface problem is many times not the real problem. You can spend considerable resources addressing what you think needs to be fixed, only to find that you get the same outcomes (or worse!).

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It’s time to take a stand

Like most of you, I subscribe to several industry newsletters. And like most of you, I don’t make time to read them. A select few, however, always get my attention—like this one from David C. Baker titled “Why No One Wants to Read Your Newsletters.”

One of David’s points hit me square in the face. Rather than generate “news” and “content” that people may not care about (or may ignore completely) provide insight that will cause them to reflect on your message, save it, or forward it.

Make people think. Take a stand. Articulate a viewpoint,” David says.

So here I go…about to take a stand. Articulate a viewpoint. Provide insight. Continue reading

Do you ever wish you had a stunt double?


I’m doubling right now for a new client. She’s an agency owner who was so busy she couldn’t find time to focus on the tasks only she can do, like landing more of the high level projects she really wants.

So I’m helping with the things she doesn’t need to be doing, like:

  • being a liaison between contractors, my client, and my client’s client;
  • ensuring our team stays on schedule and meets milestone delivery dates; and,
  • keeping copious notes as the project unfolds with multiple twists and turns, making necessary adjustments, and ensuring everyone stays on the same page.

I even stood in for my client so she could take a real vacation for four weeks, more than 4,000 miles from home, and not feel like she needed to constantly check in.

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Why image matters — a case study

Raptor Ridge Winery Label: Before and After

Raptor Ridge Winery Label: Before and After

“Freshening” an existing design is a task that often gets placed on the back burner indefinitely. Many of the reasons companies give for postponing this seem reasonable at first: “we don’t have the time,” “we don’t have the budget,” and “we don’t want to risk losing brand recognition” are among the most common.

But the real reason is usually: “we don’t want to mess with this right now.”

While preserving brand recognition is a healthy concern, it’s not enough to justify inaction. You may see some short-term savings, but the risks of letting an aging design go on too long are far greater, and can even hurt your bottom line.

Luckily that wasn’t the case for Raptor Ridge Winery, located in Oregon’s Willamette Valley region. Continue reading

Responsive website design — is your website future-friendly?

Sometime soon, your customers and constituents are going to be accessing your website via smartphone and tablet more often than from their desktop or laptop. Is your website ready for that?

The “old” way of designing for multiple devices involved development of unique stylesheets and even entire websites for different environments (desktop, tablet, smartphone, etc.). Using a relatively new technique called “responsive design,” it’s possible to achieve the same effect with only one site, one set of pages, and as little as one stylesheet.

In a simply elegant and sophisticated nutshell, responsive websites are designed to render their content differently based on the device that is being used to view them. Continue reading