Latest blog posts

Poisoned by what?

Poisoned by our sofaCould you resist checking out the full story when confronted by a headline like this? I couldn’t – if you’re intrigued too, read more here.

Taking newsletters to the Max(ïmo)

I seem to get lots of mediocre newsletters in my email. You know the sort of thing – you register with a website, choose to receive their newsletter and maybe look at it once or twice before your brain learns to ignore it when it appears in your inbox.

I signed up to Maxïmo Park‘s mailings because they’re one of my favourite bands. And their regular missives have been genuinely refreshing. Record labels tend to use bands’ newsletters to plug other groups – and they do it without much subtlety.

Maxïmo Park are a bit different, as they seem to want to really connect with their fans through the newsletter. The latest has lots of information about their tour, but it’s rather endearingly presented in a slightly rambling way:

As always we have sneakily kept some tickets back until the last minute, so if you click on the appropriate links you can try and get hold of said tickets so you can come to our Doncaster and Newcastle Arena shows. Speaking of Newcastle Arena we have still to announce the special guests so if the tension is getting too much, sorry, but I guarantee we are way more tense than you!

Ok, it’s not exactly the snappiest copy ever written. But it’s signed off by Lukas, the band’s keyboardist. And you know what? I reckon he might actually have written it.

When your target audience is a group of fans who really want to know what they band’s about, that authenticity is more important than anything. I think that goes for most newsletters. If you sound genuine, you’ll get more people clicking through to find out more. And more of those people will probably buy from you.

And of course the best way to sound genuine is to be genuine. Try to fake it and your subscribers will see straight through you.

Breaking news – really?

BBC news homepageI just popped BBC Five Live on before heading to bed, and was met with the breaking news that Jose Mourinho is leaving his post as Chelsea manager.

There’s no official word as I write this, but I imagine there’s a good bit of substance to it if the BBC is running the story.

In all likelihood it’ll be filling the airwaves tomorrow, but does it really merit the current prominence on the BBC News homepage? It’s the top story, with a generic “BREAKING NEWS” image.

Call me old fashioned, but I’m not sure a “football manager leaves club” story should ever lead the news – even if it is one of the highest profile managers at one of the world’s biggest clubs.