Talking Points
April 2020

Archived Journals

Take a look at our past issues.

New Developments

  • Branding in the Digital Era Branding was once a long-term investment. It still is, in many ways, but today’s most well-known brands—Amazon, Apple or Google—have only become prominent in the past decade while many formerly dominant brands have faded from glory or disappeared altogether. The truth is, brand equity is now created and destroyed more rapidly in today’s digital-first world. Engagement ... Read More
  • Dove Goes All-In with Recycling Beauty care brand Dove is proving its commitment to sustainability and social responsibility. The company just announced it plans to cut back on plastic waste and eventually reduce its virgin plastic by 20,000+ tons each year. Dove is embarking upon an ambitious initiative that will help address our planet’s plastic problem, shift commercial and consumer behaviors, and ... Read More
  • Meet Ms. Monopoly Remember the mustachioed, bespectacled, top-hat-wearing Monopoly Man? He’s no longer the game’s centerpiece. Hasbro has released a new version of Monopoly, and the tycoon’s niece, Ms. Monopoly, is now in charge. This new Monopoly celebrates female entrepreneurs, as players advance around the board investing in products and inventions created by women, rather than properties and ... Read More
  • A Better UI for Color Blindness Color plays an essential role in UI design. When applied properly, color improves user experiences, influences purchasing decisions, and strengthens brand identity. But to use color in a way that’s equally effective for color blind individuals takes a little extra knowledge and skill. Roughly every 1 in 12 men, and 1 in 200 women, are ... Read More
  • How to Make Digital Marketing More Human These days, it’s easy to get wrapped up in analytics and overlook the intimate, human connection our marketing is trying to make. If we adhere too closely to guidelines, statistics, and best practices, we risk losing the very element that motivates most consumers—emotion. SEO vs. Storytelling Content marketers generally fall into two camps. SEO advocates zero-in ... Read More
  • Videoconference Like a Pro Videoconferencing is now a daily activity for many in the workplace. But poor connections, lighting, sound, and even bad habits can make it look like you don’t know what you’re doing. Here’s some helpful advice to make your virtual presence more pleasing and professional. Check Your Settings Most web-meeting apps have adequate default settings. But you should ... Read More
  • B2B Marketers Focus On Brand In a recent survey of large businesses serving B2B markets, US and European marketers show optimism about brand as a growth driver. 57% of respondents anticipate marketing budget increases this year while only 13% expect a decrease. Also, 49% expect market research budgets to increase. Despite challenges, branding is the chief growth strategy 60% of survey respondents ... Read More
  • Amazon Promotes Success With Failure Amazon is bringing voice activation to the world. But in the company’s new Super Bowl spot, the internet giant sheepishly shares some of its Alexa misfires. With the help from the likes of celebrity product testers Harrison Ford, Forest Whitaker, Abbi Jacobson, Ilana Glazer, and Mark and Scott Kelly, the Amazon Beta Testing Program reveals ... Read More
  • Using AI in Social Media, and How Brands Are Capitalizing Look around, and you’ll notice that artificial intelligence (AI) seems to be touching everything, and social media is no exception. AI is poised to automate marketing processes, deliver new customer insights, and create more personalized experiences. According to Forbes Insights, “47% of company executives agree that those who don’t integrate AI into their marketing risk losing ... Read More
  • Four Ideas For Funnier Emails Humor works in marketing. It disarms the audience with a chuckle, or smile, making them more receptive to your message. But being funny doesn’t come naturally to all of us. And writing humor is even more challenging. But here’s one example that works. These images were featured in email graphics sent from dog product supplier BarkShop ... Read More

Parting Shot

  • Welcome to the Taco Bell Resort As other digital era marketing trends come and go, experiential marketing has proven its staying power. And Taco Bell has taken the brand experience to new heights by transforming an entire hotel into a mecca for its taco-loving enthusiasts named “The Bell: A Taco Bell Hotel & Resort.”  • Reservations at The Bell sold out within ... Read More
  • Invite a Puppy for Thanksgiving Homeless puppies are coming home for the holidays. An animal shelter in Virginia, Richmond Animal Care and Control, is asking residents to host their unadopted pups for Thanksgiving week. They’ve promoted this program for four years running to give dogs a break from the shelter, learn more about each pup’s personality, and ultimately match them with ... Read More
  • How Halloween Came to Be Halloween is looming. Children are readying their costumes, families are carving their jack-o-lanterns, and neighbors are decorating their houses with all sorts of ghosts, ghouls, and the like. But Halloween wasn’t always like this. Here is some surprising history and curious facts you may not have known about this haunting holiday we call “Halloween.” Halloween isn’t ... Read More
  • How to “Take Five” When Working Studies show that to remain productive, we need to take brief breaks from our work projects. But what can you actually do with 5 minutes of free time? Checking your email counts as work. Scouring social media seems a little mundane. We’ve got a better idea. Check out the websites below. You’ll be way more ... Read More
  • Brands with Kickass CTAs A compelling call-to-action is often the difference between a new customer and a lost opportunity. So, let’s take a look at 11 creative and effective call-to-action examples to help you understand why some CTAs work better than others. 1. Crazy Egg Simple language, a bullet-proof guarantee, and a curiosity provoking “heatmap” offer make this CTA irresistible. 2. Manpacks Speaking your customers’ ... Read More
  • Video Marketing Gets Personal (In A Positive Way) Personalization is everywhere. We see this one-to-one marketing in email, social media, texts, you name it. Now this clever personalization is coming to video. Connecting with customersViewer engagement is the name of the game. And as you’ll see in the examples below, inviting the viewer into the story makes these videos way more compelling. Next stop, individualizationSoon, ... Read More
  • Brands with Kickass CTAs A compelling call-to-action is often the difference between a new customer and a lost opportunity. So, let’s take a look at 11 creative and effective call-to-action examples to help you understand why some CTAs work better than others. 1. Crazy Egg Simple language, a bullet-proof guarantee, and a curiosity provoking “heatmap” offer make this CTA irresistible. 2. Manpacks Speaking your customers’ ... Read More
  • Learn Branding From Taylor Swift Taylor Swift knows how to position herself, and her angry new attitude is the latest example. Swift’s brand rose and fell during her early career. Then she evolved. She deleted her social media, proclaimed the “old Taylor” dead, guarded her love life, and began producing edgier music. We can learn from her journey Reinvention can be tricky. ... Read More
  • Kick off the Year by Giving Back Each year, Decca participates in Second Harvest’s volunteer and donation programs. In 2018 we gathered and donated 325 pounds of food through our food drive. We also volunteered at their facility, to sort 6,600 pounds of broccoli for families in need in Santa Clara and San Mateo Counties. This year, in just 2 hours the Decca ... Read More
  • Celebrity Machines Promote Walmart’s Grocery Pick Up Service Walmart has gone Hollywood, but not the way you might think. In a new campaign for its free grocery pick-up service, the big-box behemoth has cast, not famous faces, but famous cars. We’re talking the Batmobile, the Ghostbuster’s Hearse, Knight Rider, and even Doc Brown’s time-traveling DeLorean from Back to the Future. The 90-second spot ... Read More

Trending Topics

  • Brands Are Getting Simpler Modernizing your brand identity is often essential in this mobile-first, digital era. More companies, it seems, are moving to simple brand visuals influenced by digital technology. However, refreshing your brand doesn’t come without risks. To illustrate our point, let’s look at Dunkin’ (formerly Dunkin’ Donuts). Dunkin’ without donutsIn 2018, longtime donut maker Dunkin’ Donuts dropped the ... Read More
  • Responsible Shopping Returns Typically, holiday shopping trends tell us what gift items are hot, what crazy deals we can expect to see, and what online sales records will be broken. Not this year. The 2019 trends seem to be focusing more on responsible shopping. Let’s take a look at what we can expect to see this holiday season. Consumers ... Read More
  • The Decline of the “Macho Man” The role of men in advertising is changing. Where we once saw a ripped Mark Wahlberg or tatted Justin Bieber, we now see a much broader swath of modern males. Hanes, for example, clad every-day men in skivvies for an elaborate musical number. Jockey aired a spot of a man describing his battle with alcohol and drugs. And ... Read More
  • Find Inspiration Watching Netflix Netflix isn’t just binge central for the idle minds and sleepless souls. It’s also a treasure trove of inspiration for creative thinkers. You can find neuroscientific exploration, touching documentaries, lost historic footage, and lots of other topics certain to capture your imagination. We’ll focus on three of them to illustrate our point. Abstract: The Art of ... Read More
  • 7 Awesome Ways to Make Your Visual Marketing Pop The right images convert. Boring stock photos look staged, and when consumers spot them, they quickly lose interest. Simply put, lousy images leave your audience feeling uninspired. Fortunately, we have 7 handy tips to help you choose images wisely and use them effectively. Don’t compromise on quality Grainy images kill great ideas. Make sure your images are ... Read More
  • How To Create CTAs That Convert The more a call-to-action (or CTA) is used, the less effective it becomes. “Read More,” “Buy Now,” and “Click Here” come to mind. However, you can avoid the generic CTA trap. Here are a few tips to get you started. Be Specific Most marketers want to increase conversions and drive sales. If that’s your goal, try specific words or ... Read More
  • Size Up Your Social Media Brand It’s not news that brands are using platforms like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, and Snapchat to grow their social media presence. But is your social media delivering the business results you want? With users becoming more aware of paid advertising, and misleading engagement results due to the rise of ad fraud accounts, it ... Read More
  • 2019 Top Rated Super Bowl Ads Super Bowl LIII promised to be no different from past Super Bowls. Family and friends will gathered, cooked way too much food, and huddled in front of their big-screens to take in the year’s most anticipated TV spots with brief interruptions of NFL football. Just like previous Super Bowls, we’re here to spotlight the championship ... Read More
  • Top Social Media Campaigns from 2018 According to, we spend an average of more than two hours each day scrolling through social media, and these businesses took that opportunity seriously. With that being said, here are six impressive social media campaigns that kept us scrolling in 2018. 1.  Spotify’s New Year’s Resolution Campaign Spotify’s 2018 New Year’s campaign featured resolution suggestions based on ... Read More
  • Give The Environment A Holiday Gift With the holidays upon us, we typically think about the things we’re grateful for. This year, why not consider a gift to our environment? These days, our environment is under increasing strain. Carbon emissions are rising, trash is gathering on land and at sea, plus bee and other populations are declining. But there’s reason for hope. ... Read More