Help Tyner Pond Farm Win $250,000

by Lori Crantford

Tyner Pond Farm is a Rare Bird client, and on behalf of them and all those who support locally grown food, Hoosier farmers and all things good for Mother Earth, we invite you to give those great causes an important boost. Chase Bank’s Mission Main Street Grants program will award grants of $250,000 each to […]

Connections 2013 Survival Guide

by Jim Cota

Last year, about this time, I penned a brief primer intended to help people make the most of their trip to Indianapolis for Exact Target’s annual marketer-stravaganza, Connections. While initially intended for first-timers, it turned out to be helpful for veterans as well. In retrospect, this shouldn’t have been surprising: every year is so uniquely […]

Deep Fried Rare Bird: Miscellaneous Thoughts on the Indiana State Fair

by Lori Crantford

It’s State Fair time in Indiana.  As the newest member of the Rare Bird staff (aka “Baby Bird,” which perhaps is not the most apt but is, so far, the least head-scratching of my proposed nicknames), I decided to find out how my fellow birds feel about this Hoosier tradition.  Here, for your edification, entertainment, […]

Marketer Beware: That Shiny Object is Just a Distraction

by Jim Cota

Oh, woe is the plight of the marketer. With so many things to do, so many channels to explore, we often forget the one abiding truth in nearly everything we do: No one cares like we do. We find ourselves today living in the proverbial forest, trying to answer the timeless question: If a tree […]

Key Takeaways from Exact Target’s Connections 2012

by Jim Cota

As much as I dislike words like ‘takeaway’, it seems the easiest way to describe something worth, uh… taking away from the event. So here, in no particular order (and without implying any synergistic connection or claims of empowerment), are the primary things I learned in Indianapolis this week. I learned, from a company much […]

For the first time, more emails get opened on smartphones than desktops

by Jim Cota

A few months ago, in April 2012, a stunning thing happened on the way to communicating with your customers: For the first time ever, more of them opened your emails on their smartphones than any other platform*. On the surface, this seems like a very big deal. In fact, it’s even bigger than that. For […]

Connections 2012 Survival Guide

by Jim Cota

So you’ve registered for Connections 2012, made your hotel reservations and booked your travel. You’re amped up to join 4,000 other marketers in Indianapolis to find out what’s working for other people, hear Michael J. Fox’s keynote address, catch The Fray in concert, and see what David Blaine is going to make vanish. That’s quite […]

The Clickable, Trackable, Lovable Nature of Email Marketing

by Jim Cota

William Lever, who started the notable soap company Lever Brothers, famously said, “I know half of my advertising isn’t working, I just don’t know which half.” Thankfully, we no longer live in a time where we have to guess what’s working and what isn’t. In fact, in some ways, the bigger problem today is wading […]

Phishing scheme targeting web users for access credentials

by Jim Cota

I received a disturbing email from a client this morning. He had received an official-looking email that appeared to have come from an address at Rare Bird. The message said: Subj: Please update your information at [clientdomain].com Dear [clientdomain].com, Rare Bird Inc is hereby announcing a new upgrade for Content management system. We’ve upgraded our […]

Why elevator pitches suck (maybe even yours)… and how to fix them

by Jim Cota

An elevator pitch (or elevator speech) is a short summary intended to quickly and simply define a product, service, or organization and its value proposition. The name reflects the idea that it should be possible to deliver the summary in the time span of an elevator ride. Most people suggest that your elevator pitch lasts […]