Driving Home The Less-Is-More Lesson

Like most Nashville drivers, I spend a lot of time these days crawling along in the city’s increasingly crazy traffic, longing for some clear, open road. Stopped dead in a recent rush hour, I was struck by the number of ads for lawyers all around me. Splashed across billboards and plastered on the sides of passing city buses, they’re everywhere.

I did a bit of homework on attorney advertising, and quickly found out that before 1977, a lawyer publicly soliciting services was considered by the American Bar Association to be below the dignity of the profession, and it was pretty much illegal across the country. A Supreme Court decision back in ‘77 changed all that, and the floodgates opened for attorney advertising.

While advertising is used across a wide range of specialties, the most common ads are those from what are known as “tort” lawyers – things like personal injury and medical malpractice. Frankly, in both design quality and tone of messaging, the vast majority of these ads don’t do a lot to dispel the “ambulance chaser” stereotype.

Read More

Look Before You Leap

Whenever a new or existing client comes to us wanting to redesign their company’s logo, we always stop and ask a few very pertinent questions. First of all, why are you considering altering your logo? What motivated you to make this change? And finally and most importantly, are you subconsciously blaming your logo for deeper, less visible defects within your company?

Like the car lover who buys a vintage Mustang and immediately heads to the body shop for that candy apple red paint job without ever checking under the hood, you may be making cosmetic changes while ignoring problems that are festering just beneath the surface.

Read More

A Blog At 50

We did it. Just about a year ago, we promised ourselves to finally get down to writing a blog centered around our growing business, and get it out there once a week, every week. We did take a week or two off for some holiday or other, but you’re reading number 50. We figure that’s some kind of milestone, and we intend to celebrate!

Several years back, when everybody started doing it, I had a bit of a chip on my shoulder about the whole blogging thing. With years as a gainfully employed music journalist under my belt, the idea of writing for free held zero appeal for me. A mentor of mine turned my head around when he said, “If you’re blogging on a regular basis to your target customers, and you’re doing it right, you are not writing for free.”

Read More

A Man On Omission

Call it payback. After years of cynicism regarding the whole “gluten-free” movement, my doctor recommended I cut gluten and sugar from my diet for the next two months. Gluten and sugar? Yikes! As hard as it’s been to accept, I’m off to a successful start on my newly restricted diet. I’ve also been a man on a mission. I can live without gluten and sugar (I think), but life without my beloved beer? Unthinkable.

After a few stops on my quest for the perfect gluten-free brew, I arrived at Omission. Created by Widmer Brothers Brewing Company in Portland, Washington, with packaging designed by Seattle-based D.S. Phillips, Omission offers a heady blend of surprisingly tasty brew and refreshingly disruptive branding.

Read More

Personal White Space

We dropped our daughter off at college last week. And although it wasn’t quite as wrenching as that freshmen-year parting, saying goodbye to your sophomore isn’t all that much easier. Between her piles of furniture in the garage, her eclectic assortment of food cluttering up the fridge, and her “stuff” all over the house, a lot of space has suddenly opened up around here. And there’s also that empty feeling any parent experiences at such times.

I know from experience that it will take a little time to fill that emotional void. But the roomy fridge? The spacious garage? The tidy house? I’m already loving that stuff. They say that nature abhors a vacuum, but sometimes it’s important to push back and hang on to a bit of space.

Read More

Join The Clarity Conversation