Tag Archives: design

How Important is Typography?

Writing is the bread and butter of content creation. It’s at the very heart of what we do here.

You can’t transcreate out of nowhere, and you can’t design quality content around ‘Lorem Ipsum’.

All too often, though, the writing part of the design process is overlooked. After all, there are more interesting things to focus on, right? Images, flourishes, colours? Wrong.

Typography matters. First of all, imparting meaning is the main aim of any collateral. Design helps with this, sure, but it’s the words that do the donkeywork. So they need to be clear and legible.

Body copy should conform in a neat font that’s neither too swirly nor serify, and large enough to be easy to read without taking up too much space.

When it come to titles and standfirsts, there’s a bit more freedom and as a result, people like to play with fonts more. Different kinds of typography seem to say different things, and provide another opportunity to project your desired brand image.

For example, Didot and other similar serifs immediately scream ‘fashion’ and ‘luxury’ – probably because we’re so used to seeing it across the pages of Vogue, Harpers Bazaar and other high-end fashion magazines.

Something like Helvetica, on the other hand, is simple and functional, so works extremely well for body copy or in bold for titles on less immaculately designed or ‘flowery’ products.

Our advice? Put some serious thought into the fonts you choose when designing collateral. Do they complement each other? Are they clear? Do they say what you think they say? There’s a tendency to sometimes fall back on ‘swirly’ fonts to give an air of classiness, but they’re rarely as effective as they’re intended to be. Most of the time, they’re either unreadable or a bit naff.

Consider the weight and style of the font you use – P22 Underground in light is a totally different beast than P22 Underground in heavy, and when italicised a lot of fonts take on an entirely different character.

Do your research, don’t be afraid to test things out, and above all, come up with a coherent style guide so that there’s consistency across all your products. Make sure that your typography choices become synonymous with your brand.

Digital design, branding and content part II

Rhubarb Fool shares 10 benefits of quality web design

5. THE PURPOSE, INTEGRITY AND COHERENCE OF YOUR CONTENT

Content and design should co-exist in harmony on your site. Always remember that it will take visitors some effort to try and understand what you’re trying to say. So make sure you don’t:

  • say it in blocks of small, dense text
  • set out your text in an unattractive way
  • use tools of navigation that aren’t straightforward.
  • allow your “calls to action” to be confused.
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visitors away. The job of a good designer is to work with your content. They’ll deliver it with clarity and visual appeal, so that it directs your visitors to do what you want them to do.

6. THE DEVIL IS IN THE DETAIL

Choice of fonts, text spacing and contrast are the sort of details that make a significant difference to the overall quality of your site. Such subtleties could be overlooked by those happier

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with function than design. But ultimately it’s is these subtleties that can determine how readable and functional the site is.

7. LEAVE IT TO THOSE WHO CAN SEE THINGS AS THEY ARE, RATHER THAN AS YOU’D LIKE THEM TO BE.

Your expertise is your business. The chances are that your expertise is not web-design. Sometimes you’ll actually benefit from making a trade off by focusing on what actually works for the web, rather than what actually works for you. When you pay the premium for a professional web designer, you’re paying for some who as the experience of translating ideas into web pages.

8. AVOID FALSE ECONOMIES.

Everybody wants a good deal. But how many times have we all regretted convincing ourselves that the great price we’ve been offered would actually deliver a great quality product. It’s quite possible to try to buy into the promise of getting high-quality design services and ending up spending time and money having to get someone else to put a bad job right. You’ll never run a business well if you don’t try and secure value for money in your purchases. But our experience is that good design takes time. As such, it costs money.

9. RELIABLE PARTNERSHIP

Business owners and web designers need to take a completely collaborative approach to creating a website. The process involves communication, a to and fro of ideas, conflict and compromise. If you can go through this process and deliver a satisfactory outcome, you’ll be at a point of establishing a long term commercial relationship.

10. ROOM FOR DEVELOPMENT

The foundations that should be laid by good quality web-design should offer a solid foundation from which improvements and embellishments can be made. It may be that you want to want to add a new product, or include a new service. Whatever the case may be, your site should already have have a suitably strong aesthetic to allow you to move forwards rather than to retread old ground.

So if you’re looking for some guidance in the field of web-design why not contact us at Rhubarb Fool. What you’ll find is a process that will be all about you. Not us.

Digital design, branding and content part I

Rhubarb Fool shares 10 benefits of quality web design

In any new industry, it’s been our experience that self definition can come to play a big role in determining a service provider’s skills and abilities. We’ve certainly met a lot of web designers. But a lot of the web designers we’ve met have actually been individuals who are quite capable of building a website, but believe that this ability somehow bestows on them the ability to design a website. Self belief; however, is necessarily a very subjective issue.

Rhubarb Fool can’t offer you any definitive advice that will assist you in your quest to find a good web designer. However, what was evident to us was that when you’ve found a good one, you’ll know it.

Something there’s no question about is that quality web design can be an extremely valuable investment. But these seem to us words that slip out a bit too easily. What do they mean? What are the actual benefits of commissioning a professional web-designer? Will your hard earned gold pieces actually yield a tangible return? Will an attractive website stimulate your business’s growth?

At Rhubarb Fool we champion great web design. Here are a few reasons why.

1. CONSISTENCY OF BRAND IDENTITY

Professional designers occupy the macrocosm, rather than the microcosm. They’ll be focused on  creating a visual identity for your brand that maintains its integrity across a variety of different contexts.

Your logo, website, social media profiles and even your business cards all need to be singing from the same sheet. Homogeneity and individuality need to be dancing together like old partners of the silver screen.

Brands that have a consistent visual identity are simply more memorable than those that appear fragmented. Being more memorable, they’ll also be more durable. A professional web designer should know how to make your brand’s visual identity move seamlessly across different contexts.

2. MORE VISITORS WHO STOP FOR A CUP OF TEA, A SLICE OF CAKE AND A CHAT.

Your website represents your business. So you’re not just looking for clicks. You’re looking for visitors who will  browse through your site and become acquainted with you and your brand. Don’t be under any illusions. Most visitors will have a swift glance at your site and then be off. It takes something a little bit special to keep a visitor interested in your site. It takes even more to make them want to learn more about you and eventually make a purchase.

3. MORE CUSTOMERS

A good web designer will focus on calling your visitors to action. They’ll be asking them to “sign up”, “learn more” and “buy now”. The placement, appearance and content of these calls to action will be vital to the functionality and effectiveness of your site. The upshot of getting this done right is simple. Busy cash registers.

4. PUTTING CLEAR BLUE SKY BETWEEN YOU AND YOUR  COMPETITORS

The internet is built on the back of websites that are “good enough”. So how are you going to stand out from the crowd? Within any one industry you can bet your bottom dollar on the fact that there will be a lot of websites that look the same. They say what they’re expected to say, in a manner that they’re expected to say it. Their design doesn’t offend, but nor does it excite.

We’ll never encourage anyone to make a spectacle of themselves. But quality is all about identifying your individuality, focusing on your unique selling points and combining these elements into one joined-up visual identity.

Media strategy tourism retail rhubarb fool

Marketing across multi-media formats with Rhubarb Fool

How Rhubarb Fool can practice the perfect multi-media marketing strategy and why you can’t afford to be a one trick pony.

A beautiful billboard advertising campaign, focused on sites of premium exposure, will turn heads and it could create a stir. But what happens when the wind and rain works its magic?

The beautiful colours will fade and that high quality paper will tear. At Rhubarb Fool we believe that nothing will serve you as well as an integrated marketing plan that has breadth, charisma and durability.

But, as is the case in all of our commercial activities, that’s easy to say, but difficult to do. At Rhubarb Fool the task we set ourselves is to identify the best possible combination on markets approaches to take with your brand.

Research undertaken by Pointroll (in conjunction with Kelton Research) in 2012 generated some interesting pointers. In surveys of marketing professionals more than half of these professionals suggested that would use 5+ marketing methods in a single campaign. Of these, 15% said they used between 7 – 9 different methods and 13% claimed to routinely be hitting double figures in the methods they would use.

This suggested to us that people in the know seemed more inclined to approach the market place with a wide net, rather than a deep net.

But let’s be clear. Although Rhubarb Fool is able to pick from an extensive stable of marketing methods, there’s no chance of us being able to spend five minutes looking at your business and then tell you what methods are going to work best for you. Unlike Google, we don’t have fantastic algorithms at our command. We still have to suck it and see sometimes.

Think about cooking your favourite dish. Imagine the blend of herbs and spices; or cooking times and methods that deliver those taste sensations that you seek. Sometimes you’ll be best served by closing the recipe book and relying instead on Instinct and experience. You need to personalise the recipe. It’s just the same process in identifying the best methods of marketing for a company.

When we approach (for example) marketing methods for a digital campaign, we would be thinking along the lines of content, social media, apps, tablets, website development and search engines. Any number of these can be used in a digital marketing campaign, but you wouldn’t necessarily need to use all of them.

The success of a marketing campaign will be defined by its ability to make as many people as possible (in your target market) absorb your brand’s message.

We don’t think you’ll do this by a billboard on the North Circular, unless awareness was measured by the number of hours that London’s ill-favoured motorists spent staring at it. But we’re In the digital world. At Rhubarb Fool we want to diffuse your brand’s message across a bespoke selection of online streams . We want these streams to support and reinforce each other, and thereby provide a solution to brand communication that is integrated and holistic.

Allow me a cliche. At Rhubarb Fool “we’re always thinking outside the box”.The digital world is constantly evolving and by way of this process it’s always generating new marketing opportunities. Let’s look at Vine. It’s a social app, which allows users to capture and share a constantly looping 6-second video, for example. The potential that this had for marketers looking to create branded content is huge. It’s just one of the new marketing methods that Rhubarb Fool is harnessing.

To better illustrate out approach, let’s imagine we’re working with a young travel company, which had asked us to increase its profile. We might think about running a competition to engage potential punters. But, for that competition to work, we’d need people to know about it.

And how would we do this?

We might write a witty article or produce a comical video to surround our competition? But that’s not all. From there, we’d be using all of our skills to get our great content published on a variety of high profile and targeted sites. These would encourage and incentivise our audience to visit a website that we would have had specifically made for the competition.

Then, we’d be working to inspire people

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to share and engage with the brand via the hashtag or Twitter handle we would have created for the occasion. And beyond that we’d look at have a Facebook page underpinning the whole process.

So I hope you can see how Rhubarb Fool would use content, website development, social sharing and all-round exposure to engage your target market. Once we’ve done that your target market will yield customer upon customer. We want to give your audience more than a simple banner ad. We want to give it a whole brand experience that it can interact with.

Rhubarb Fool Marketing design branding

Rhubarb Fool and multi-media marketing methods

How Rhubarb Fool can practice the perfect multi-media marketing strategy to promote your brand.

A beautiful billboard advertising campaign, focused on sites of premium exposure, will turn heads and it could create a stir. But what happens when the wind and rain works its magic. The beautiful colours will fade and that high quality paper will tear.

At Rhubarb Fool we believe that nothing will serve you as well as an integrated marketing plan that has breadth, charisma and durability.

But, as is the case in all of our commercial activities, that’s easy to say, but difficult to do.

At Rhubarb Fool the task we set ourselves is to identify the best possible combination of market approaches to take with your brand.

Research undertaken by Pointroll (in conjunction with Kelton Research) generated some interesting pointers.

In surveys of marketing professionals more than half of these professionals suggested they would use 5+ marketing methods in a single campaign.

Of these, 15% said they used between 7 – 9 different methods and 13% claimed to routinely be hitting double figures in the methods they would use.

This suggested to us that people in the know seemed more inclined to approach the market place with a wide net, rather than a deep net.

But let’s be clear. Although Rhubarb Fool is able to pick from an extensive stable of marketing methods, there’s no chance of us being able to spend five minutes looking at your business and then tell you what methods are going to work best for you.

Unlike Google, we don’t have fantastic algorithms at our command. We still have to suck it and see sometimes.

Think about cooking your favourite dish. Imagine the blend of herbs and spices; or cooking times and methods that deliver those taste sensations that you seek.

Sometimes you’ll be best served by closing the recipe book and relying instead on Instinct and experience. You need to personalise the recipe. It’s just the same process in identifying the best methods of marketing for a company.

When we approach (for example) marketing methods for a digital campaign, we would be thinking along the lines of content, social, apps, tablets, website development and search engines. Any number of these can be used in a digital marketing campaign, but you wouldn’t necessarily need to use all of them.

The success of a marketing campaign will be defined by its ability to make as many people as possible (in your target market) absorb your brand’s message. We don’t think you’ll do this by a billboard on the North Circular, unless awareness was measured by the number of hours that London’s ill-favoured motorists spent staring at it. But we’re In the digital world.

At Rhubarb Fool we want to diffuse your brand’s message across a bespoke selection of online streams . We want these streams to support and reinforce each other, and thereby provide a solution to brand communication that is integrated and holistic.

Allow me a cliche. At Rhubarb Fool “we’re always thinking outside the box”.The digital world is constantly evolving and by way of this process it’s always generating new marketing opportunities. Let’s look at Vine.

It’s a social app, which allows users to capture and share a constantly looping 6-second video, for example. The potential that this had for marketers looking to create branded

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content is huge. It’s just one of the new marketing methods that Rhubarb Fool is harnessing.

To better illustrate out approach, let’s imagine we’re working with a young travel company, which had asked us to increase its profile. We might think about running a competition to engage potential punters. But, for that competition to work, we’d need people to know about it.

And how would we do this?

We might write a witty article or produce a comical video to surround our competition? But that’s not all. From there, we’d be using all of our skills to get our great content published on a variety of high profile and targeted sites. These would encourage and incentivise our audience to visit a website that we would have had specifically made for the competition.

Then, we’d be working to inspire people to share and engage with the brand via the hashtag or Twitter handle we would have created for the occasion. And beyond that we’d look at have a Facebook page underpinning the whole process.

So I hope you can see how Rhubarb Fool would use content, website development, social sharing and all-round exposure to engage your target market. Once we’ve done that your target market will yield customer upon customer.

We want to give your audience more than a simple banner ad. We want to give it a whole brand experience that it can interact with.

Want to find out more then say hello!

rhubarb fool content brand guidelines branding

Flexibility is the key when building brand guidelines

Rhubarb Fool is currently working on producing brand guidelines for one of the UK’s leading trade associations.

It’s an interesting project and we thought we’d jot down some tips we’ve picked up along the way. The most interesting being that the best brand guidelines are flexible. bend but don’t break!

Form the offset, it has been imperative to understand who will be using these guidelines and importantly why do they need them. Is it just colleagues, or advertising agencies as well?

Read our post on key considerations for building brilliant brand guidelines.

Do ask whether there is there a specific reason why they need to be produced?

You may learn something. Sometimes employees (let’s call them users) feel a little imprisoned by the brand, especially if it is an iconic one. They may benefit from being pointed towards alternative, yet still consistent, brand usages.

Maybe it is the opposite and the value of the brand is being diluted by a conflicting variety of usages. In that case we need to impose some consistency. Either way it’s best to find out from the get go.

As soon as you have learnt about the audience, get to the nub of the brand.

Distill the essence of the brand into three or four words maybe. Use these words as the core pillars of the guidelines, making sure to explain how using the brand guidelines will help communicate these pillars to the key customers.

As mentioned, brand guidelines aren’t a pair of handcuffs. Use engaging language to demonstrate that the guidelines are there simply to guide not to rule. Good guidelines almost tell a story, so encourage the user to come along for the ride. Let’s discover the brand all over again!

Your guidelines need to be flexible. Brands need to tell their stories to a range of audiences and one size does not fit all. Adapt your tone accordingly and keep emotional responses front of mind.

Thus, a brand needs to live and breathe.

It is no longer a monolithic icon towering over our lives as it once was. We meet with a brand in a thousands scenarios now, and often the consumer will manipulate the brand to their own means. And there ain’t nothing we can do about it so chill. No-one’s getting hurt.

There is a difference between rigidity and consistency. Go for the latter. Make rules flexible enough for designers to be creative but robust enough to keep the brand consistent and recognisable.

Consistency is key as brand spill over and into different media but feel free to show  examples of how the brand should look across a full range of different platforms and media.

Your brand will evolve with different audiences. That’s fine, don’t sweat it. Your brand is out there living, having fun and only occasionally bringing home its dirty washing.

We’ll update this as we continue with our branding project, but if you have a question about brand guidelines or, indeed would like us to review your own then please do let us know.

Entrepreneurial journalism. Part III

Don’t be Afraid of a Funny.

You have to see your interaction as potentially impinging on your readers’ leisure time. So lighten up, be cheeky, use rhetorical questions and have a giggle. People warm to and try to remember a funny. So if you’re fortunate enough to have a good sense of humour, use it,

Have a Point of View.

Social media can encourage the bland and the insipid. Just look at Facebook. Many people would rather blend into the consensus than risk treading on someone’s toes. But what’s the point of any writing that demonstrates no point of view? After all, people made incredible sacrifices so that we could say it as we see it and express our opinion. Don’t be afraid of that right.

Break. It. Up.

Readers’ searches for content will generally be determined by how fast they can skim read. You’ll only succeed at slowing them down by getting your hooks into them. Ease the function of rapidly shifting eyeballs by breaking up your pieces with short passages, lists, images, bullet points and captions. Clever use of subheadings can break your story down and captivate your reader.

Tell stories.

You’ll always be able to engage readers with how-to pieces, predictions, top-tens and other similar staples. But think of yourself as being a storyteller too. There are certain key elements to storytelling such as time, place, characters, conflict and resolution which can help you to take your reader on a journey.

Arouse.

I don’t wish to be too bold. But maybe I should. There’s nothing wrong with a bit of sensory stimulation. Great writing leans heavily on cliffhangers. So build curiosity. Suggest. Surprise. Hit. Twist. Do the unexpected. Whatever you can do to make eyes dilate and hearts pound will make you mean more to your reader.

Teach.

Advertising is essentially preaching. We like to think of entrepreneurial journalism as being more about teaching. Your mission is to educate, and entertain. You’re going to have to talk about your brand, but you’ll never build an audience if that’s all you talk about. Share your knowledge with generosity and make the reader feel that they’ve engaged in something valuable.

Converse.

Entrepreneurial journalism can lead us to write conversationally. It helps when you ask your readers to ask questions, add comments and join the new media interaction party.

Demand Action.

As any comedian will tell you, it’s always best to leave your

funniest gag until the end of the show. But entrepreneurial journalism has no point of closure. After all it will be motion that you’re ultimately measuring. So never bid your reader farewell. Tell them what to do next. Share. Sign up. Register. Download. Try. Buy.

Grasp these points of entrepreneurial journalism? If you do you’ll succeed in engaging readers. Whatever happens, let us know and don’t be a stranger.

Entrepreneurial journalism: the written word and commerce. Part II.

Entrepreneurial journalism: the written word and commerce. Part I.

Entrepreneurial journalism. Part II.

Identify and focus on the ultimate objective.

If you can succeed in entertaining and educating your reader, then you’re half way there. But we never lose sight of the fact that strong entrepreneurial journalism should be aimed at eliciting a response from its reader, rather than entertaining or educating him or her.

The exact nature of that response can come in different shapes and sizes. But is has to be clearly identified and targeted from the outset. Unless we know precisely what optimum reader response we’re seeking, then we’re not practising entrepreneurial journalism.

Add Value and Establish Credibility.

Reading various other peoples’ work on commercial content, we’ve seen the word “value” come up again and again. But how do we add value to a product by writing about it?

Let’s approach this question by way of analogy. We like to think of a football commentator, who’s giving a commentary on a match you’re watching. A good commentator will offer a sense of excitement and provide an accurate description (players’ names etc) of the game.

A great commentator also does these things. But they’ll also tell you things that you didn’t previously know and point out details of the match that you hadn’t previously noticed. A great commentator will be on your level. They’ll give you the sense of being on your side by helping you to derive as much enjoyment from the game as possible. It’s easy to understand that some people have favourite football players. But it’s our experience that people also have favourite football commentators as well.

Connect and Empathise with your readers.

We all need a friend out there. In market places that sometimes seem rapacious and bewildering, it can be nice on occasions to be taken by the hand and helped to make a good decision. But it’s nicer if you feel that the person who is taking you by the hand has an unambiguous understanding of what you’re actually looking for in that market place. And to understand your readers you’re going to have to take the time to get to know them before you start communication with them.

Visit the venue before the Event.

It’s important to be mindful of where or how your reader is going to encounter your content. This can be tricky because the answer(s) may not be singular. You may be firing some shots in the dark. However, you’ll be a far more valuable resource if you’re able to integrate your content into a

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media-driven strategy.

Think about how the media best serves your reader. Try and identify a realistic time and place where the interaction will take place. Is it going to be one or two way traffic? Will the experience be superficial or more profound? Is it a first time meeting, a regular spot on the social calendar or a follow-up? As much as is possible try to focus on the where, when and why factors and you could increase the relevance and accessibility of your content.

Put Meaning into your Message.

Your content should be based on an idea. But that idea can’t be arbitrary. However basic this may sound, anyone can call themselves a content creator. Style without substance can still turn heads and, though it will always be found out sooner or later, in the short term it can even win contracts. But we want you to do things properly. We want you to thrive and still be reading our blogs in years to come.

So every element of the content you create should be a step towards an ultimate objective. Put another way the macro message you want to deliver will never be successfully constructed unless the micro messages are intricately, thoughtfully and meaningfully delivered in a manner that is more than anything joined up.

Contextualise your Message.

Interactions in the public sphere no longer occur in isolation. This is a fact that is even more evident in commercial spheres. So make sure you’ve got a good sense of who’s doing what in the space that you’re entering. Find out where the party’s at. Learn what’s tired and what’s fresh. Identify your market’s most influential individuals, organisations, publishers and companies.

Never be afraid to rigorously research your competition. Familiarise yourself with the tactics and tone that have traction in the market place. While you’re ultimately going to be served by making yourself unique, it will always help to know what’s worked and what hasn’t.

Make your content come alive.

The best way of doing this is by having a headline that makes an impact. Your headline is an invitation to like-minded people to join you and enjoy what you’re enjoying. So you can’t afford to be coy. Make people feel that they’ll be missing something unmissable if they don’t get on board with you. Make it clear this one can’t be missed.

Excite. Tease. Tantalise. Strike a chord. And be ever mindful of the fact that you only get one shot at a one liner. Make your opening salvo resonate. It needs to be exciting, resilient and most importantly something that you won’t be tired of seeing a year from now.

Listen. Create. Communicate. Three words that occupied us for days. They’re probably not words that are going to get anyone hot under the collar. But they’re words that accurately headline what we do.

Maintain Perspective.

You live, breathe and sleep your company. Good. It shouldn’t be any other way. But let’s be fair. Not everyone is going to share your passion. The easiest way to lose someone is to ply them with information about something that they have no interest in.

You won’t turn a single head by talking about your brand or product. Regardless of the message you’re trying to give, the central character of the piece has to be the reader. Make “you” your stand out word. Assume that your reader’s favourite subject is him or herself. After all everybody warms to someone who is interested in them.

Encourage a Realisation.

Let’s assume your headline worked. Your reader gets your message. But never is the old adage “many a slip twist cup and lip” truer. You could still lose that reader if you don’t consolidate the initial connection. So pose a question or make a statement that encourages the “yes, that’s me” realisation. Let your reader know you get them and you get their needs.

Feelings are your friend.

Your reader will process information firstly through emotion, and secondly through reason. So your writing should be connecting straight to your reader’s limbic system; the sub-cortex section of the brain, the centre of desire and motivation. Use words that suggest passion (and if you’re passionate about your subject that helps) and feelings.

Mates’ Rates.

Drifting? Lacking ideas? Words aren’t flowing? Not hitting the right tone? Each of these issues is probably linked to you over-thinking what you’re doing. So approach your content without fear and formality. Singularise the interaction by talking to just one person. Try imagining it’s a mate or someone you’re relaxed when talking to. And start typing the way you’d talk.

Enliven with Verbs.

Use adjectives sparingly and use verbs vigorously. Engagement is about doing. Support. Promote. Achieve. Do. Be. Do.

Express yourself.

In a world defined by increasing homogeneity people tend to remember the one offs. The writers that are remembered: Shakespeare, Joyce, Twain and Camus had voices that were as unique as their fingerprints. And you are unique. So find your voice. Let it define your writing. And never be afraid of being you.

Plain English is Big and Clever.

Want to alienate a reader? Go to the manual. There’s nothing worse than industry-specific, technical language. All it will do is cast your reader back to the hellish hours they spent assembling a flat-pack piece of furniture. No matter how much you love your industry’s jargon, leave it where it belongs.

But, perhaps conversely, avoid any process of dumbing down, in pursuit of perceived accessibility. Just be yourself and focus on little words that showcase big ideas.

Rhubarb Fool is a multi-platform content provider

Entrepreneurial journalism. Part I.

At Rhubarb Fool we never stop reminding ourselves that you won’t deliver style, if you can’t deliver substance.

In no small part, the substance of Rhubarb Fool’s work is determined by the content it generates. The greatest proportion of this contact comes in the form of the written word. And that’s what will will be the broadest focus of this piece. Good, accessible writing.

We’re also clear that the writing that we

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undertake as Rhubarb Fool is largely commercial. Its success or failure won’t be determined by the response of The Times Literary Review. However, at Rhubarb Fool we all love great writing and we all aspire to write well.

In our attempts to qualify the writing we produce, we’ve coined the phrase ‘entrepreneurial journalism’. It’s a phrase that you may have come across on our website. But please don’t get too alarmed. We’re not claiming to be great entrepreneurs and we’re certainly not claiming to be journalists. Rather, when we talk of entrepreneurial journalism, we’re talking about writing that helps our customers meet their commercial objectives.

If we approach writing in its generic form, the conclusion that our boardroom conversations have led us to is that good writing is underpinned by the author’s personality (having something worth saying in an attractive, engaging and interesting fashion) and accuracy (grammatical and factual integrity).

At the same time, anyone who has written a lot will know that (even if you have bags of personality and are the sort of person who loses sleep over a mis-placed comma or a questionable fact), writing involves a process.

Entrepreneurial journalism is, by its very nature, more process driven than its brothers and sisters in the literary or journalistic world. Essentially, the process

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of entrepreneurial journalism demands not only preparation (that would be a prerequisite for any good piece of writing), it also involves planning. Our purpose is not only to deliver something that attracts and engages. It is also to deliver something that is functional. Something that does a great job for our customer.

So read on and let us set out the most important steps we’ve identified that could help you deliver good commercial writing. We hope that this piece guides you through the planning process to the point of execution and implementation.

Rhubarb Fool LGBT TRAVEL CONTENT

LGBT Tourism Breaks Through USD$200 Billion in Annual Spending

The world’s leading LGBT tourism trade association today released new research showing the annual spend on tourism

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by lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people will exceed USD$200 billion for the first time in 2014.

Out Now Business Class www.OutNowBusinessClass.com presented the latest findings from the world’s largest LGBT market research study LGBT2020 today at a special Masterclass on LGBT tourism trends at World Travel Market in London, the leading event for the global tourism industry.

The new LGBT2020 data showed that the top 20 markets for LGBT tourism now account for annual travel spending of USD$202 billion.

The largest spending markets were the USA (USD$56.5 billion) and Brazil (USD$25.3 billion).

Out Now Business Class also announced new affiliate relationships with ETOA (European Tour Operators Association) and GALTA (Gay and Lesbian Tourism Australia).

ONBC and ETOA jointly released a new LGBT2020 Report on European Tourism showing the total value of spending on travel by LGBT Europeans will next year account for USD$66.1 billion of total tourism spending.

Also presenting during today’s LGBT Masterclass presented

by ONBC at WTM were Polo Sánchez-Valle Ortega from the Mexico Tourism Board, Jay Munro Michell of ETOA, Richard Gray of Fort Lauderdale CVB and Darren Cooper of Out Now Global.

The CEO of Out Now Global, Ian Johnson, also announced today that ONBC is now the largest global LGBT tourism trade organisation of its type.

“Out Now always works very hard to deliver the best from all our work, so for us the successful launch of the Out Now Business Class tourism trade association for the industry has been really important,” Johnson said. “ONBC is not only delivering unequalled levels of education, networking and research to members, we are pleased the industry has understood the many benefits we are hard-wiring into the ONBC system to help businesses do better in their LGBT marketing and that sees our membership now exceed 2,300 members worldwide. That makes Out Now Business Class by far the largest LGBT tourism networking association in the world.”

Johnson explained that those organisations training staff in the ONBC system as an included part of their membership become eligible to become certified on the new OutNow.travel www.OutNow.travel consumer website which is backed by many of the world’s leading LGBT media providers.

Johnson also said the results presented during the ONBC Masterclass at WTM today had much to keep the industry thinking on about how to best understand and meet the needs of the global LGBT travel market.

“It is great that the value of LGBT tourism spending now exceeds USD$202 billion but there are still many challenges the industry needs to address,” Johnson said. “Staff training is essential to help get staff up to speed with what has become an unstoppable LGBT consumer revolution for the travel industry. We are obviously pleased that all ONBC members now receive unlimited online staff training to help deliver better understanding and customer service to LGBT guests.”

Johnson also pointed out that the acronym LGBT may soon be replaced by the more inclusive LGBTI – recognising an increasing awareness of Intersex issues in society. “Intersex people are becoming more visible and their unique issues are slowly becoming better understood,” Johnson said. “In a number of markets in which Out Now works the acronym LGBT is now routinely being superseded by LGBTI and the global tourism industry definitely needs more education on what being Intersex means.”

http://www.wtmlondon.com/page.cfm/action=press/libID=1/libEntryID=2343/listID=1#sthash.4Uh7MEJw.dpuf