No.4 / June 19, 2005

The Corporate Muse


Welcome once again to The Corporate Muse! We're happy to share our marketing and writing tips and ideas with you in issue #4. And as always, we appreciate suggestions and/or questions. 



Make Marketing Count


So you’ve decided to embark on a marketing campaign, but you’re not sure which approach to take.  Maybe you’re new to the idea or perhaps you’re an old hand but still have questions about what works and what doesn’t.  Let’s explore some of the options, shall we?


  • Advertising – Great gig if you can afford it.  Advertising offers maximum exposure.  One well-executed advertisement can reach a large number of prospects with very little effort.  Key elements: repetition and the possibility of public renown tempt even the most circumspect buyers.  The big drawback is, of course, the price tag.  Good advertising costs dearly and results are sometimes hard to measure.  Few small-to-medium size companies are fortunate enough to have the kind of budget that allows for such expenditures.  While television awards the best coverage – it’s also the most expensive.  Radio and newspaper, less costly alternatives, still get the word out about your business.  If you have the funds, advertising can be well worth the money in giving you citywide or even nationwide recognition.  


  • Websites – The World Wide Web has changed how America (and the rest of the world) conducts business.  We are more connected than ever before in history.  Anyone, anywhere can learn about your company by typing it into Google or Yahoo.  If you haven’t already, why not tap into this ready-made resource by setting up a website featuring information about you and your company?  The cost, depending on how you go about it, can be minimal.  Hiring a web designer is the priciest way to go, but there are low cost or even free templates just a mouse click away.  Log your information into one of these and the only other charges will be for registering your domain name and a maintenance fee as low as $5.00 or  $10.00 a month.  Keep in mind that people read Web pages differently than printed text.  Short paragraphs, bullets, and an "inverted pyramid" structure are proven tactics to engage your readers. Having a functional, well developed website gives access to your establishment 24 hours a day, seven days a week, which makes it an invaluable tool.


  • Brochures – If you’re looking for an opportunity to clarify what you do in an attractive, portable package, the brochure is your answer.  An 8 x 11½” sheet of heavy paper, lengthwise, divided into three columns and printed on both sides, allows ample room to convey your business story.  Customers can learn all they need to know about your company in a presentation they can take with them and share with other prospective clients.  A brochure begs to be attractive and every word must count, so it’s imperative to carefully plan what you want it to say and how you want it to look.  The initial cost of copy and layout will be moderate to expensive (depending on whether you tackle this stage of the process yourself or hire professional writers and/or designers to do it for you) with reprints produced at a much lower rate.  Most businesses will profit from having a brochure available to distribute when asked for more information about their operation.  It’s particularly useful if you have a difficult to explain or unusual business.  


  • Telemarketing – You know, those annoying “unknown name” or “unavailable” numbers on your Caller ID.  All irritation aside, this approach works.  It has to or why would they continue to call us?  Think about it, no one in his/her right mind would phone people day in and day out, just to be screamed at or have the phone slammed down in his/her ear if there wasn’t a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.  Face it, as objectionable as we find unsolicited calls, the method does its job.  The question then, is it right for you?  One advantage – the price – free (if you have phone service) and everyone loves free!  You can ease the discomfort by restricting your list to names generated from sign-up sheets at your office, store, or website.  To execute: write a script, preferably one that includes a special bargain for any takers, and decide on a specific number of calls you’ll make each day.  The major obstacle, besides the possibility of cauliflower ear, is the National No Call list.  If you’re contacting other businesses, this rule doesn’t apply.  And the bonus?  The plausibility of connecting with someone actively seeking the exact product or service you represent.  What can be better than that?


  • E-Mail – With the advent of the computer age, companies can now procure email lists and quickly send notes to interested parties (i.e., how many of you started receiving The Corporate Muse).  Through email, the world becomes your oyster.  No longer limited to your local area, your business can increase exponentially.  If you have access to the Internet, it costs you nothing but the time it takes to compose the message, compile the addresses and send it out.  A word of caution here – credibility is key.  Legitimate communication usually comes in the form of emails associated with a website (for example,  People tend to immediately delete messages from so-and-so @  “” or “”, etc.  Spam guards present another problem.  Many corporations won’t accept emails from any name they don’t recognize.  Because it’s economical and readily available it might be worth a shot – you really have nothing to lose.  


  • Direct Response – Direct mail letters, sales letters, postcards, brochures, booklets and large packets of data comprise part of the inexhaustible potential found in Direct Response.  From a simple postcard to a colorful envelope full of irresistible offerings, you can enlighten, enthrall, and/or entice your audience.  Postage ranges from $0.23 on up, making direct response mail relatively inexpensive.  The USPS even has a variety of postcards conveniently stamped and ready to go.  Add that clever message tumbling around in your head and you have a winning combination!  Everybody gets mail and most people will at least check out an inviting submission.  The greatest benefit of Direct Response – it’s the only market strategy with true measurability.  You'll know exactly how well it's doing because you'll get instantaneous responses through increased traffic or phone calls.  Careful assessment of these results will give you a clear picture of how to proceed with your next promotion.  In the meantime, you’ll reap the rewards your Direct Response Campaign produced.

We’ve outlined only a few of the many techniques to move your merchandise or introduce your firm to the public.  What works best for you may be a poor choice for the guy down the street – and visa versa.  Keep in mind; if you do nothing, your business will flounder.  On the plus side, active marketing might not have to be a forever kind of thing.  Established industries rely mostly on referrals to stay busy.  So whenever you find satisfied customers, don’t forget to ask them to recommend you to others.  Marketing plans should be reevaluated yearly. Make sure you take yours out, dust it off, and see how well it’s working for you before the next year comes around.  And if we can assist you in any way, don’t hesitate to give us a call or drop us an email. (SKC)

           © QuickSilver Copywriters 2005 – Andy & Shawn Catsimanes;; mailto:; Sign up for The Corporate Muse:




Marketing With Blogs - Part 1
By Priya Shah


Marketers have found that blogs are excellent tools for communicating with their audience. Anyone who has something to sell or an idea to promote can benefit from using blogs.


Corporates like Nike are using blogs to build branding. Microsoft and Sun are using them to communicate with the developer community.


Blogs have a number of advantages that make them excellent tools for communication.

They are cheap to install and require little or no technical expertise. So the entry point for blogging is very low when compared to the expense of hiring a website designer.


While building a website is often out of the reach of most solo entrepreneurs, anyone can start a blog. If you can’t write or hate to write, you can start an audio or video blog. The possibilities are endless.


Blogs also help you create content that search engines love, and encourage linking from a number of other bloggers who write on similar topics. This makes them excellent tools for getting high search engine rankings and boosting your visibility.


They also encourage immediate responses from your readers and customers, so you can get feedback, tweak your campaigns and respond better to the market’s demands.


Blogs, and the RSS feeds they come with, help you syndicate your content online, boost your reach and influence and allow readers to control their communications with your company.


Your blog can be your selling point and help your prospects opt for you and your services over those of others.


Whether you’re an individual, entrepreneur, small business, consultant, coach, book author, independent filmmaker, actor, model, travel guide, work-at-home mom - someone who wants to promote their individual skills and talents or interests – there is immense potential in using blogs to promote your business.


In part 2 of this article series I cover some tips that will help you ensure your blog is a good marketing vehicle.

Priya Shah is the CEO of eBrand360 and writes the Marketing Slave blog.

This article may be reprinted as long as the resource box is left intact and all links are hyperlinked.

Article Source:




Writer’s Block And The Menopausal Mind


Okay, I admit it; I’m over fifty and have attained that glorious womanly right of passage. 


Anyone who’s been through menopause or has been forced to face it with someone they love knows the previous statement drips with sarcasm.  For those plagued with symptoms, the transition will probably be less than enjoyable.  After all, who wants to wake up in a pool of her own sweat, flinging blankets hither and yon and minutes later frantically scramble to cover herself on account of the shivering?  Or stand in line at the supermarket when that oh-so-familiar feeling hits as moisture beads along her bang line and trickles toward her eyebrows?  Distressing as hot flashes are, losing the ability to access facts, stories and words she’s known all her life can be even more nerve racking. 


And don’t even get me started on leaving keys, purses, and dare I say, children in the oddest places.


Experts don’t always agree on the part hormones play in the dreaded fuzzy-headedness, but most say waning estrogen levels contribute to a woman’s inability to think clearly during this stage of her life.  For “cures,” physicians instruct us to eat right, exercise, limit caffeine (like that’s possible), take vitamins, reduce stress levels, and get plenty of rest. 


Okay, so I’ve done all that (with the noted exception of eliminating coffee – however, in my defense, I have modified my usage by mixing half decaf and half regular) and I still struggle with forgetting my point in mid-sentence.  And it goes beyond maddening when trying to compose the next great American novel.  


(For more info see: & 


Since finding the right word at the right time is what writers do, a sudden attack of lethologica can be lethal for those of us who consider ourselves wordsmiths.  Every writer, male or female, suffers the inability to create now and again.  Our fear of staring at a blank page or an empty screen, willing the words to come, has engendered shelves devoted to the subject in many a bookstore.  But what about the forty to fifty-something woman, can she realistically differentiate between the two?  And even more essential, does it matter?


Yes and No.  Yes – if you’re a woman entering this phase of your life and have yet to seek medical attention, now might be the time.  Treatments are varied and individual and I’m not qualified to direct or advise on the matter, but I do recommend you research it thoroughly and listen to your body.  You’ll know what works best for you when you hit on it.  No – I find the same methods that ameliorate writer’s block also ease memory lapses.  Discovering ways to restart your engine, so to speak, is the key here. 


Here are a few things that have helped me: 

1)       Walk away from it.  More often than not, the minute I remove myself from my desk, the word, phrase, sentence or paragraph pops into my head.  And I can’t tell you how many brilliant ideas have surfaced while flying down the highway at 65 mph (so don’t forget your hand-held recorder).


2)       Do something physical.  Exercise increases endorphins helping us feel good about ourselves.  Doctors target depression as one possible reason for fuzzy thinking.  I schedule vigorous workouts every day because they improve my disposition and energy level.  Consider the thirty minutes to an hour necessary replenishing time.


3)       Take a bath.  At a writer’s conference several years ago, I learned a wonderful fact about water.  It contains negative ions, which counteract the positive ions abundant in wind, fumes and dust.  (  Without delving too deeply on the subject, this explains why people become rather grouchy under relentless windy conditions.  Negative ions are the reason immersing yourself in (or even just getting near) water alters your mood and enhances your creativity.  Think about it – how many times have you had a mind-blowing epiphany while taking a shower?  Don’t be afraid to jump in!     


I hope you found these useful, but you don’t have to take my word for it.  Here are a couple of sites that might interest you: & 


P.S.  I have to admit, I grappled with practically every word on this page.  Part of it naturally occurs from a desire for excellence in my craft (that, and those occasional "senior moments").  Let me encourage you to press on.  This annoyance can last from two to thirteen years, but don’t despair.  There’s hope and there are ways to combat it.  Hang in there and keep this mantra in mind, “I am woman, hear me roar!”  Good luck. (SKC)  © QuickSilver Copywriters 2005 – Andy & Shawn Catsimanes

We have good news!  Past issues of The Corporate Muse can now be accessed on our Website  Thanks for reading. See you next month!


Andy & Shawn Catsimanes

To Unsubscribe:  $UNSUBSCRIBEURL$


© 2005 QuickSilver CopyWriters – All Rights Reserved

Return Home

Back to Newsletter Archives




For some good reading , check out our Article Archives!


"With Andy & Shawn's help, 'Snapshots from the Soul' became a reality. They demonstrated great sensitivity and compassion and we enjoyed working with them very much."

~Dennis E. Chapman, Associate Executive Director, City Union Mission, KC, MO


“Andy and Shawn are copywriters you can count on to understand your business and your customers. I couldn’t be more impressed with the copy they provided us. Their work is excellent. I look forward to working with them again soon.”

~Kevin Fryer


"A book would not be enough room to compliment Shawn on her work. Her professionalism comes first even if it means staying up late at night to answer all your question. She works tirelessly to get the best results possible. Her attitude, caring, and devotion are unique and I'm thankful I had the chance to work with her."

~ Olga O'Mara


"Andy is a no fluff wordsmith with high direct response, long copy talent. His work will lift interest in your website. His ability to get up to speed on your unique business model is impressive. He is persistent to completing projects and takes personal pride in the quality of his work. He is honest and knows what drives sales. If you are lucky enough to get him, you will get above average copy for a fair price. I'd use Andy anytime."

~ Christopher Hebard
Pruett Media