How to make a small fortune out of horses…

…start with a large fortune…!

If you or someone you know loves – or possibly hates – horses, here are some excerpts from an evergreen little book I wrote, The Horse Lover’s Joke Book and its younger sibling, The Pony Lover’s Joke Book. Some are old favourites, but many of them are original, written by moi.

Funny stories and jokes about ponies and horses

Suze and friend (Suze is on the right…) as drawn by caricaturist Simon Ellinas.

Given that there are more than 3 million privately owned horses and ponies in Britain alone, with many of their owners working two jobs to keep the little darlings in comfort, these excerpts will resonate with at least one or two of your friends and acquaintances. Feel free to print this out and share over coffee and cake with them!

Choices
“Why the sad face?” asked one of two riders out on a hack.
“My husband says I have to choose between him and my mare,” replied the second rider.
“Gosh, I’m sorry,” commented the first rider.
“So am I,” replied the second rider. “I’m really going to miss him.” [Read more…]

How To Write Better: thank you, 2 million page viewers in the last 4 years!

More than 2 million page views in 4 years! Nothing could have made me happier than being greeted on my return from Canada (Sept 10th, 2017) to find that our humble How To Write Better (the REAL one) has exceeded the 2 million page view mark since September 1st, 2013.

2 millions page views for HTWB
For a niche site that’s a labour of love (rather than the off-shoot of another site that exists in the USA as part of a large commercial enterprise…) I have to say I am truly proud of our achievements. [Read more…]

How not to spam bloggers, by I. M. A. Spammerdick

If you have a blog, or a website with a blog, you may well get approached by kind souls offering to do anything from enhancing your content to transforming your life if only you include their totally unsuitable material within your blog content.

how not to spam a blogger

Do you ever stop to read the spam you receive? It certainly can open your eyes…

I have to admit it, though. I read a lot of my spam.

Why such a saddo? It’s because even though it’s spam I can learn from it. (And get some laughs from it.) Here are some of the more outrageous examples… [Read more…]

Cheap, drive-thru video: what little monsters we’ve unleashed!

Being a veteran of the very late 20th century when companies paid an average of £30K / USD $37.5K for a basic “corporate video” and in return received a top-class, professional production, I can’t help but be gob-smacked by the way businesses are whining these days.

Cheap business video on HTWB

Cheap business video: panacea or pain in the *ss?

This of course is about their paying more than a few hundred pounds/dollars for a business video, because they believe – and it’s true, sort-of – that all you need is to shoot it on an IPhone, edit on a laptop, and shove it up on YouTube as well as on their websites. Done and dusted in an afternoon.

And if you want something more sophisticated, you can hire that guy from the next town who just bought himself a fancy new video camera and could put Quentin Tarantino to shame, now that he’s read the instruction booklet.

Is this really the ultimate panacea for getting SMEs into the movies? Or is it the quickest, most monstrous way for those SMEs to flush their professional credibility down the toilet?

[Read more…]

Creative training videos: the renaissance at last?

Once again we welcome Farai Chirimuuta, video supremo based in Milton Keynes, England, who has delighted me by suggesting that the time has come for the rebirth of what I consider to be the most effective and inspiring of all training media … the capturing, enrapturing “training video.” But before I hand over to Farai, let me share my own two cents’ worth…Sz xx

Creative training videos: the renaissance at last?

Creative training videos: communication in a richer landscape that words alone cannot hope to compete against.

In my observation and  experience (although I write training material for business clients, as a volunteer cancer survivorship worker I watch and go to a lot of medical/healthcare training sessions as a learner) current training offerings may be cheap to produce and easy to be measured for effectiveness. But how much effectiveness? Does the fact that learners can recall XX percent of the teaching points at the end of the session in the feedback forms mean the associated messages will stay with them beyond tomorrow?

Not now. Not today when so much training is tick-box, multiple-choice either on-screen or delivered to a script when it’s live (and Heaven help you if you ask a question that’s not in the script: nearly always, the professional trainer won’t know the answer.) So much of it is bland, boring, done to the book… [Read more…]

Help from your new Content Strategist: what I’ve been doing for 10 years…

The term “Content Strategist” sounds awfully pompous if you live in modest-speaking Milton Keynes, England. But having been doing this job for the last 10 years working with SMEs and Micro Businesses (helping them determine what and how to communicate to their markets in the first place – not just writing it for them) I finally caved in and renamed myself. I am now a..

CONTENT STRATEGIST!

Help from your new Content Strategist: what I've been doing for 10 years...

When I’m not being a “content strategist” I ride and help judge horses. (NB: here the horse is on the right.)

But enough already with the self-congratulation. Here’s how my meagre offering works out in practice, and how it helps smaller businesses to avoid much of what the bullsh*t merchants and so-called social media gurus shove down our throats every day. (Did someone mention “common sense” in the world of digital marketing? Thought so…) [Read more…]

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