Monday, September 25, 2006


Copy testing, with clearly defined benchmarks, has become a requirement in many companies. It is perceived as essential to ensuring effective advertising communications. As such, marketing managers, their brands, ad agencies and/or, at minimum, ad budgets live and die by the numbers. While the employment of copy testing could lead to achieving advertising excellence it is, all too often, abused - leading to poor marketing communication development practices and processes.

This week's DISPATCHES is the first in a series of articles on how to achieve leadership advertising communications. It focuses on copy testing. The series was published previously but has been revised and is being reissued to provide you with a preview of the subject matter for the planned BDNI Leadership Communications Seminar. If you want to learn how to achieve more successful copy testing scores and, more importantly, marketplace performance from your advertising read the article "Weighing The Merits of Copy Testing." But if you really want to develop the needed skills consider registering for the Leadership Communications Conference.

The Leadership Communication Conference consists of 4 individual workshops: Discovering Customer Insights; Developing a strategically appropriate, single-minded Creative Brief; Realizing the BIG Idea; and Developing High Impact Communications Execution. Go to or call Lori Vandervoort at 800 255-9831 for more information or to register for the conference.

The Dispatch for September 24, 2006 can be found here:

WeighingTheMeritsOfCopyTestingRev.pdf (PDF File)

Sunday, September 24, 2006


It's hard to imagine that marketers anywhere would question the value of having an idea in their advertising or communications. After all, people who typically become marketers do so because they love ideas. They are the "idea champions" of any company (or at least, they sure should be). Why then do we hear more and more often marketers and their general managers saying that they are fine with advertising that "just gets the product news out?" Sometimes when we show our seminar participants examples of big-business-building campaign ideas they will say, "Those aren't relevant to us. We don't do campaigns these days. We do spots, "one-offs." To which we want to respond, "But do you know what you are missing, what opportunities you are 'leaving on the table' by not having an Idea?" This week we answer that question!

The Dispatch for September 17, 2006 can be found here:

WhyIdeasMatterRev.pdf (PDF File)

Sunday, September 10, 2006


This week's DISPATCHES discusses in some depth a disturbing pricing trend in airline ticketing. If you have fallen into a complacent mode of booking your flights, you may want to take a closer look at your options. Click on the link below to view the newsletter in pdf format.

The Dispatch for September 10, 2006 can be found here:

Price Gouging Rev.pdf (PDF File)


This week our theme is competence, more specifically, technical competence when it comes to providing strategic direction. We often assume that any key strategic document prepared by someone in marketing or one of the marketing services (like the Ad Agency) is inherently worthy of consideration. But when we dig into the proposal we find it is unclear, incomplete, incoherent, or (worst of all) not really competitive. These are the technical fundamentals that should underlie any strategic proposal, especially the Brand Positioning Statement, the Communication Strategy, and the Creative Brief.

The Dispatch for August 27, 2006 can be found here:
GettingTechnicalAboutThings.pdf (PDF File


If you listen to anyone that knows anything about advertising, or business for that matter, he or she will tell you about the importance of taking risks. The attached DISPATCHES (first published in August, 2004) gives us an indepth picture of what can we do to make that risk pay-off.

The Dispatch for August 20, 2006 can be found here:

MakingRiskPayOffInAdvertising.pdf (PDF File)