24 Jun 2008

Is your website a ham sandwich?

In my early days at Citat Journalistgruppen one of the magazine editors sat me down to discuss the soul of a magazine. She explained numerous ways to define a magazine’s soul, but the one that stuck with me was related to food. This could be something to do with my love of cookbooks, ingredients and everything food-related.

The question to ask the team involved in the magazine production (this could apply to websites, brochures, social networks, or any other tools communicators use) is if we could eat this magazine, what would it taste like? Spaghetti and meatballs, steak tartar, smoked salmon or warm apple pie. These dishes all have distinct characteristics, smells, tastes and memories. These characteristics help define the design, images, color palette, article style, length and depth. If the soul of your magazine is pad thai, an element of zing will be reflected throughout the magazine. Is your magazine or website dishing up comfort food, fine dining, exotic fare or the staple of a brown bag lunch?

In his post on the Influential Marketing Blog, Rohit Bhargava invites people to troll YouTube for videos that represent a theme of subject that they are passionate about. It made me think about the possibilities of using YouTube to define the soul of communication productions. Videos evoke emotions, both good and bad. A collection of videos would be great way to define the soul of collaborative website, for example.

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