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Design is a secret language.

I love this slide Greg Ramsey quickly did for one of my presentations. I love being able to feel the person behind design. This week I presented at a conference in Vermont and I got asked the most wonderful and unexpected question during Q+A time. “You have the most beautiful slides. Do you believe design …

Announcing “Good Time”

A few fun facts:  20 percent of companies offer Employee Volunteer Programs (EVPs) and that figure has been steadily rising over the past decade. (Source) EVPs have been shown to improve employee morale, productivity, loyalty and recruitment efforts. (Source) 61 percent of millennials report that an employer’s commitment to its community would play a role in their decision to accept …

Friday Fotos | Remodel Edition

New map for our old office space.    New conference table…coming soonish.   A cool way to think about what drives us.   Cleaning day!       Wishing you a purrrrfect weekend.

I hope you get pneumonia.

If I move again, it will be to a really tiny house like this one. About four years ago, I got pneumonia. Trust me. Coughing up blood makes you listen hard to a doctor’s advice to stay in bed. So I canceled my fancy plans to meet with a client on the west coast. And …

Friday Fotos | La-La Land Edition

Pie for Pi Day.   Our ancient floorboards are becoming our new conference table — and we can’t wait to see the final result.   Greenville goes to (BOF)LA.   Beau doing a little nasal proofing of our handiwork.   Hope your St. Patrick’s Day was good and green.

How to Be Good: It’s So Obvious That It’s Not

For some reason, whenever I go grocery shopping, I find myself drawn to a random row of product in the baking aisle. The “weird flours,” if you will. I always wonder about the people who are purchasing those little bags of coconut flour and hazelnut meal. “What are you doing with all that chia seed,” I find myself wondering. It’s …

What’s your moonshot?

A couple of weeks ago, I attended a Rapid Ingenuity Blitz in NYC. Greg Galle from Future Partners shared Google’s criteria for moonshot idea during the Blitz. 1. Must be an idea that will affect a million people.  2. People will say you are nuts.  3. Yet you still believe it’s possible.  Don’t you just love …

Friday Fotos | Wood Edition

Our old floorboards are becoming our new conference table. (With a little help from @PineBoxDaddy) Sometimes we get paid to burn things. They don’t call us Brains on Fire for nothing. Not awkward at all.

Surprise + Delight: Land Rover

When it comes to marketing, surprise and delight might be my favorite thing of all. There’s something really magical about getting to help your client become a remarkable brand by doing something remarkable. And while there are all kinds of theories about the ins and outs of surprise and delight, it’s the one part of marketing I find …

Friday Fotos | Walls Fall Edition

A farewell to FIRE wall… Room to romp! Client trip to ATX. Yeehaw, y’all. Had a blast today putting our #client in front of the camera in Austin. T-Rex and Tapatío: BOFLA essentials.  

Design Is a Time Traveler

I recently visited a friend’s house to discover a canister of Cafe Bustelo sitting on their countertop. With its bright yellow and red design, it stuck out like a sore thumb in a space  I lovingly (and accurately) call the epitome of a hipster haven.  A quick Google of Cafe Bustelo history makes me think their branding …

Great Brands Help People Be Great

A core belief in our PASSION CONVERSATION book is the need to rewire a marketer’s brain to appreciate creating opportunities (online and offline) for the customers you serve to share their own stories. A lot of good can come out of encouraging people to talk about themselves, their lives, their hopes, and their accomplishments. Ultimately, …

Five Ways to Embrace Healthy Tension

I know it’s cold outside, but it’s comforting to know that Spring will come. This photo from Libby Willams is a great reminder. Yesterday Emily and I were having a discussion and she made a simple statement that got stuck in my heart. A company like Brains on Fire should have “healthy tension”. I honestly have …

The 2014 Brains on Fire Annual Report

  2014 may go down in history as the year of Adele Dazeem, that Oscar selfie and $55,000 potato salad, but around here, it was another great chapter for the BOF history books. From hundreds of cups of coffee to thousands of copies of The Passion Conversation sold — 2014 treated us well. The proof is in the infographic.

Friday Fotos | Canada Edition

Donuts? Don’t’ mind if we do. A good day to be at BOFLA Geno speaking at #TheGathering2015 Banff is beautiful! #TheGathering2015 Zissou says, “Make a Frenchie Friday.” #BOFLA

Customer Service Starts when the Customer Experience Falls Apart

Canceling DirecTV and going with a competitor wasn’t on my to-do list when I moved last month. But that’s exactly what happened. After far too many crisscross conversations with different customer service reps telling me different things, I could not reward DirectTV with my continued loyalty. I will not bore you with all the gory …

Talkable Brands: Chipotle’s Cultivating Thought

This weekend I went to Chipotles for lunch with my “other”.   It was well past 2pm. We had been out and about and were starving. As we sat down, Steven casually handed me my drink cup. Printed on the side of the cup was a wonderful set of words and the little illustrations in the photo above. I’ve …

Friday Fotos | Muffins Edition

The micro manager of BOFLA. We’ve got 800 more where those came from. Sometimes life is like a box of chocolates that people have already systematically picked through and rejected. Cause a West Coast party’s got style. A whole new Firesphere — coming soonish. 

Jam Time 101

You know the old adage about “something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue?” If life were a wedding, we’d be pretty set right about now. Something new? Check. Something old and borrowed? We’ve got a two-for-one going on. And that’s what we’re going to share today. (We’ll figure out that something blue another day.) With the flipping …

Why You Should Be Curating + Culling User-Generated Content

User-generated content has become the golden goose of marketing. If we do our jobs right, we get people to care about our client brands and organizations. Once those relationship are established, we’re in a much better place to inspire people to action. With more than 300 million users, Instagram usurped Twitter in December. For many brands, user-generated photos have become one of the most valuable …