2016 was a good year, and 2017 is already shaping up to be better. I feel like I'm kicking the year off with about 15 footballs simultaneously. Need more hours in the day (or more feet). I have advertising, collateral, web, and trade-related display projects in the works with everyone from relatively new clients to old friends. Despite the workload, now is a great time to get in on the fun, if you're seeking one-of-a-kind advertising creative. I do my best work under challeng
For me, it's been a great summer of family trips, beaches, golfing, and fishing (the latter two with mixed results). Unfortunately, the sun is setting earlier and earlier every less-balmy night. The kids are back to school. Yes, summer is winding down, but things at Captivation Capital are heating up! Frankly, this would be an opportune time to contact me regarding your advertising or marketing project, before the workload-o-meter spikes from "busy" to "ridiculously swamped."
If you're a marketing director at a company of any size, you know how to piece together one mean marketing plan. It has the reach to cover every aspect of your company's marketing goals, the legs to carry you through all the ups and downs of the coming fiscal year, and the brains to strategically deliver messaging to every key target. In short, all of the parts are stitched together masterfully. But there's a critical missing ingredient: Juice. Mojo. Power. A 1.21 gigawatt su
When it comes to generating advertising creative, I've always been a "show don't tell" person. No need to research and focus group a concept to death: if it works, it works. If you're trying to connect with your target audience at a "gut" level, then trust your own gut. Launch an ad campaign that hasn't had every edge buffed dull and harmless by too many folks armed with the sandpaper of "prudent marketing practices." I'm no Steve Jobs acolyte, but I do admire his supposed av
Funny. The last heading from my last blog post was "You Don't Need a Big Agency to Get Big Ideas." Since that proclamation, I have been developing big ideas for a very big company. It's a privately-held company with revenues well above $1 billion, and it and little ol' me have been getting along quite well. Ideas brought us together, or, more accurately: Captivation Capital® did. Said large company understood that great ideas aren't exclusive to great big agencies. They stepp
Big Game Flashback Of all the ads from the past Biggest Professional Football Game in February that Shall Remian Nameless, one ad stood out to me. Nagged me, really. The Jeep ad that finishes with the tagline, "4x4ever." Where had I heard that before? Then it recently dawned on me: I heard it in my own brain...two years before the Jeep ad aired. You Don't Need a Big Agency to Get Big Ideas A couple of years ago, an outdoor furniture manufacturing company asked us to develop c
Imagine your accountant on vacation. He or, let's say she, is toasting in the sun on some remote tropical beach with a ridiculous umbrella-ed drink in one hand and People magazine in the other. Suddenly, the nimble number cruncher springs from her comfortable Adirondack and begins scrawling something in the sand with the broken end of a palm frond. Hours later, she's filled the beach with yards and yards of hand-written...spreadsheets. That's us. Even when we aren't working f
As the avid follower of this blog that you are, you've no doubt noted that there were no posts for February. That's because we were busy proving that Captivation Capital™ can be applied to any medium. Captivation Capital, as you may already know, is a category of business capital invented, championed, and skillfully produced by (whom else?) Captivation Capital, Inc. We create captivating content for a wide variety of advertising and marketing media, from outdoor advertising,
Here's an ad we designed recently that we're rather proud of. Technically, this is a trade ad. But, really it's simply an ad. An ad designed to interest humans who are likely to be in the market for a new concrete block and paver making machine, but humans, nonetheless. And as humans, we concluded that said audience of humans would respond to captivating design and language with enthusiasm and curiosity, whether they were shopping for, in this case, industrial machinery or, i
The billboard series pictured above is now brightening the bleak winter skies throughout Holland, Michigan. We created it for Holland Christian Schools, an innovative K-12 school that takes learning to new heights. For decades, HCS has been at the forefront of educational theory and practices. Captivation Capital, Inc. developed a billboard campaign that translated that pioneering spirit into the inspiring graphics and copy, shown above. What's your industry? Our chief produc
The Story If you haven't heard the story, it goes something like this: Thomas Edison invented the light bulb. OK, I'm guessing you knew that part. However, it took him hundreds of attempts to land on the right combination of materials and fabrication to finally arrive at a practical, working lightbulb. The number tossed around was a nice round 1,000. The 1,000th try was the winner. After unveiling his invention, he was asked by a reporter how it felt to fail 999 times before
You'll never see these guys around the Captivation Capital watercooler. We've never employed them; never will. Mumbo jumbo, business buzzwords, marketing jargon: Why are we so vehement in our opposition to all of these? Are we just blatantly anti-speaking? No. Not quite. We are, however, opposed to over analysis. Endless meetings, over-detailed questionnaires, surveys, focus groups, action plans, processes, and double-secret sure-fire twelve-step methods may be the approach o
Welcome back to the next installment of WWDTOWWD! Today, I invite you to digitally page through this brochure we wrote and designed for Lorence & Vander Zwart, a successful financial planning firm in Holland, MI. Captivation Capital, Inc. was asked by LVZ to create a communications piece that not only described their services and experience, but also connected with their target audience on a more personal level...beyond simple dollars and cents. Our answer went right to the h
Why invest in creative, captivating approaches to communicating with your target audience, when communication is as simple as showing your audience what you want them to buy and telling them to buy it? Rrrrrrrriiiiiipppppp. (That's the sound of me symbolically tearing my hair out in response to my own rhetorical question.) Goodness knows I've devoted the posts of this blog, the pages of this website, and decades of ranting to the concept of creativity as a valuable business a
Your company could benefit from a banana waffle machine, organic free-range accounting (see Figure 1), supersonic cubicle maintenance...oh, and Captivation Capital®. We understand that Captivation Capital, our invaluable product for business, can sound as out there as a conference room table Slip-n-Slide, but stick with us, it's pretty simple. Capital Ideas You know the basics of business capital, so we'll forego the explanation, other than to grossly oversimplify thusly: it'
Don't get me wrong. I see stuff every day that makes me (grudgingly) mutter to myself..."wish I'd done that." But this running Oblogatory™ series will tackle the much more pleasurable and fulfilling task of expounding on the virtues of our own work. Self-indulgent self-promotion: the ultimate combo. For the first installment, I picked this cover we designed for the Christian School Teacher Magazine. We'd already completely overhauled the magazine's design, inside and out. For