Monthly Archives: July 2012

A Pleasant day for a Read

What makes a pleasant read? Is it the content, the way or style in which it’s written? What do I mean by a pleasant read anyway? I mean text that is pleasant to read no matter what the subject or style. We talked about 12 point being the ideal point size for elderly and low readers but what if your audience is neither? Here’s a quick break down of what point size goes with what age. Serif typefaces are still the way to go, that has not changed.



Preschoolers and those just learning to read: 24 Point
7-8 year olds: 18 Point
8-10 year olds: 14 to 16 Point
12 year olds: 12 Point
Adults: 10 Point
College Students: 9 to 10 Point
Seniors: 11 to 12 Point

Inspiration or perspiration?

You have something to figure out, a problem to solve, how do you do it? Do you go for a walk or run, take a warm shower or do you stay put and hash it out until you have a solution? The answer is yes. The understanding of how creativity and imagination works goes like this. When you are presented with a problem or task, for instance, organizing a lot of information or creating a new user experience for your customers, you need a basic idea or concept. Something to get the ball rolling, inspiration perhaps; go for that walk or run. What happens when you do that kind of activity is that you actually open yourself up to distraction. And distraction opens you up to possibility. Those flights of fancy spark ideas; ideas that may not fit your typical path of problem solving can turn out to be insightful and innovative. Now once you have your inspiration it’s time to drill down and work. That’s where you trial and error and revise and refine. Time to shut out distraction and focus on the problem at hand. The key to revision and refinement is to go far enough but not too far. You need to revise more than you think and stop before you think you’re done. That’s an oblique statement but once you’re at that place you’ll understand.

More photo tips to save your sit-upon

Here you are shooting the award luncheon. You cleverly got your group shots already. You got those early because: 1. I told you to do that before and 2. Inevitably some one you need a photo of leaves early. Now you’ll still shoot the honoree holding their award, plaque, or whatever. But just in case that photo comes out badly you have a back-up picture to use. But what happens if you have a lot of space on that web page or newsletter and not much copy or better, lots of copy that needs to be broken up but unified together? That’s where you take your own version of stock photos. Take a close up of the award. Take a photo of the invite, the poster directing people to the event, event attendees, the honorees or other VIP placards. Take photos of anything related to the event. Then once you are back at the office, crop, crop, crop. Crop your photos, crop them a lot. Use those cropped images as paragraph starts, Use them to fill in a large space that lacks copy. Use them as page cues, an indicator that the story continues here. Below the first image is the whole picture. The others photos are cropped elements of the same photo, see? Keep that in mind, it can save your sit-upon.

Just because you could doesn’t mean you should …

is not just about low rider jeans and skin tight t-shirts. It extends to postings too. This is why YouTube is stupid with kitten videos. No redeeming value, just a few more minutes of your life gone F O R E V E R. Funny thing about forever, as physics goes, theoretically time is fluid. There is no reason, from a physics view, why we should not remember the future as we remember the past. And yet it is linear in a forward direction. Go figure. See? Another example of the cool getting you off point. Resist. Know your message and report it. Do not digress, stay on message, you have a point-make it. You are about your brand, your product. Unless you can find a way to cleverly insert something off topic, off your branding strategy, don’t do it. And while I began this post as a way to post this cool fireworks video I took, I’m still right. Resist, stay on message, stay within the brand. Now look at my cool fireworks video!

The social media conundrums

As a dedicated and faithful reader of this blog you know about email blasts. You know how often and when. But with all things, there is the down side. There are somethings you should consider before you start that blog, send email blasts or sign-up for that Twitter account. The things to consider are: quantity, quality and consistency. If you start a blog will you be able to keep it up? Will you find subjects to opine about? If you send email blasts do have enough new information to send a blast twice a month, once a month? And Twitter, if you have an account how often are you going to tweet? As a business, or professional organization these are important things to consider. The first and most important is content. Do you have enough to say to justify posting to a blog two or three times a week? I post once a week. I’m very consistent. Not perfect but pretty consistent. That’s important. I sent an email blast on behalf of the organization I work for twice a month. If you send an email blast every three months you will not create any impact. If you get a Twitter account will you be able to keep it up with actual relevant information? Unless you’re famous no one is going to care what you had for lunch or that you have a new copier. The other consideration is who at your organization does these media things? Is it one person? It shouldn’t be, using an email blast service is not rocket science. More than one person at your shop should be able to send blasts, post to a blog-if that fits your media plan. Lots of this stuff is designed to be user friendly so one need not be afraid of considering using these tools. You should consider all aspects before you post, blast or tweet.