The Red Jacket Diaries blog

Sue Horner is a freelance writer in Oakville, Ontario, who blogs about writing, newsletters, communications and running an independent business in The Red Jacket Diaries blog.

How do you reach “non-desk” employees?

How do companies communicate with their employees these days, when so many don’t have a desk or a computer? How do you reach those who work in a mine, in the cab of a delivery van, on the sales floor? Since it’s been a long time since I’ve been in a home office, curiosity sent […]

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To bid or not to bid on that RFP?

When it comes to a Request for Proposal (RFP), the first question you should ask yourself is this: To bid, or not to bid? At a meeting this week of my local group of independents, the Communicators Connection, presenter Paul Heron pointed out that for small businesses like ours, responding to an RFP may be […]

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Pricing tips for indie communicators

If you’re new to freelancing, you probably charge by the hour.  However, a better plan for both clients and solopreneurs is to charge by the project, according to panelists at the recent IABC/Toronto Professional Independent Communicators (PIC) session on pricing. This takes the focus away from time and puts it on value. While you might […]

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Runs with undies

The issue is serious — colon cancer — but those of us running/walking to raise money for the cause on February 28 couldn’t resist a little word fun. Thus The Turdles were the top team in the Sacramento Undy Run, and the field included Heidi’s Hineys, the Semi Colons, the Stolen Colons and Team Pooper […]

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Reports of print’s death are exaggerated

Author Harper Lee’s recently discovered book, Go Set a Watchman, will launch with an e-book and audio book – and two million print copies. Her original 1960 book, To Kill a Mockingbird, still sells more than a million hard copies a year. Clearly, print is not dead. Here are some of the reasons why: Understanding […]

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LinkedIn turns up the noise

Wait for it: 230 million LinkedIn users around the world will soon be piling on the publishing bandwagon. LinkedIn says it is “always looking for new ways for members to contribute professional insights.” That means it is allowing members – as well as the so-called “Influencers” – to publish “long-form posts about their expertise and […]

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Mitch Joel talks ‘access, not ownership’

The Internet used to be like an elephant; it never forgot. Now, its future is about “fast, temporary pieces of content” (think Snapchat) that are here now and gone soon after. Mitch Joel, one of North America’s leading digital experts, told IABC/Toronto members at a recent event that consumers don’t necessarily want things to be […]

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Plumbing the depths of your website with analytics

Don’t ask digital marketer Kathryn Lagden what number you should look at in Google analytics. When it comes to your website, it’s all about what YOU want people to do. “Figure out your goal and then you can find out how to measure it,” she told the audience at an event I attended in January, […]

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Why newsletters still have value in 2015

However “old school” you might think them, newsletters remain a powerful tool for keeping in touch with employees, clients, prospects and other important audiences. Sure, call me biased. I love newsletters, both print and electronic. But I am not the only one, and here are some of the reasons why: Email and electronic publications help […]

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Please stop ‘hacking’ your life

Don’t tell me you’ve found a way to “hack” your life, or your morning, or your productivity. The tiresome term appears to spring from the standard dictionary definition of “to alter (a computer program).” It gets a nod as slang for “cope with, manage, tolerate, or accept.” The Urban Dictionary calls it “a clever solution […]

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