One thing we coach our clients on is how to filter their feedback on design projects. While they see what’s in front of them through their experiential and preferential filters, it’s our job to take their preferences AND the preferences/experiences of their tribes into consideration as we design. This can be hard to grasp, but when done correctly it’s ultimately in the best interest of your brand. We like to use the phrase “the bait has to be attractive to the fish… not the fisherman” to put it into perspective. …

What Got You Here Won’t Get You There

On a weekly basis, I have conversations with business owners who have never engaged in any sort of active marketing work. It’s not that they haven’t thought about it, they just have never acted upon it. They have built successful businesses on amazing work, elevated customer experience, and their unique perspective in their industry. You need ALL of those things to make a mark, but the conversation always progresses to “I have lived on referrals, and doing a good job has always just worked… but it’s not really working like it used to.”

Panic Mode

The common mistake is to panic, read…

It’s 2019 and we’re still obsessed with work. I’m sure this has been the case for centuries, but when I stop and look at everyone around me, this fact just straight up punches me in the face. So, first, I need the get these two things off my chest:

Hustle Porn is Bullshit

[insert Instagram superstar name of your choice here] has infected our culture with the idea that the quantity of hours worked daily/weekly/monthly equals the quality of our product/service and the depth of our expertise. 16 hour days, 100 hour weeks, 0 sick days, and 0 vacation days. These are the accolades of hustle porn.

We need to realize that work volume does NOT equal work effectiveness. Your brain doesn’t work that way. Its science. Long days should be the exception, not the normal. You’re not delivering your best work on a consistent basis if you’re burning the candle at both…

The principles to creating magical work are pretty straightforward. This doesn’t mean that they’re easy to live out, but they’re easy to understand.

Magical work is simple, clear, and brilliant. Let’s break these down.


Clean. Straightforward. Transparent.

We love to over complicate, over communicate, and over think everything. This is true in marketing, design, strategy, and life. But magic is taking the complex and making it simple.

We associate complexity with value. We think that if people are paying us for a service, the more complicated the offering or process, the more value it holds. I believe the opposite is…

Couch Potato.

I love movies. I love my couch. My kids love both as well. They love their iPads and Netflix and Amazon and … You get the point. I think we can escape through these things. Bored? Netflix. Tired? Surf the web. Putting off a project on your to-do list? Amazon.

It was becoming apparent that my kids were shutting their brains off and going into feeding mode WAYYYYYYY to often. I would ask them to do something that required a little bit of brain power and they would give up 2 seconds into it. I would ask them to go…

Entrepreneurship is NOT a Ladder. It’s a Mountain.

A little Tuesday morning encouragement for you hustling out there; this journey isn’t a ladder. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in the past 7 years of owning my own business, it’s that most of the time there isn’t a simple, clear path to the next rung… It’s a series of landslides, giant boulders blocking the path, and a very deep valley on one side.

  • Have the audacity to embrace the unknown, find another way, and then MAKE YOUR OWN PATH.
  • Surround yourself with people on the climb, and rely on them for honesty and friendship.
  • Learn from those who…

Finding More Clients — The Sniper and the Bird FeederFinding new clients can be super frustrating. The ideal situation is this; take care of your clients, make something amazing, and your business will market itself. This is all fine and dandy. It’s not new information. It’s best practice and most successful people will give this advice to you. It’s true, to some extent…

So what in the hell do you do when this isn’t the case? When you’re making awesome shit and people aren’t beating the door down? It happens. It’s happened to me. It’s happened to friends. It’s frustrating…

The Spark

There is a spark in us all that makes us unique. A creative force that needs to be realized and released. A view of the world that is beautiful and completely original to us. We can either withhold this gift, retract from letting the world see it, and smother the spark. Or we can care for it, place it on kindling, and share the brilliance of it with all.

I have 4 beautiful children (Emmy, Cole, Brittain, and Savannah) with my (smoking hot) wife Alicia. I have watched this spark grow since birth in all my children. The unique little…

good. fast. cheap. you can only pick two.

Good. Fast. Cheap.

I’m assuming that if you’ve been a part of the workforce for any amount of time, you’ve come across this mantra at least once. If we’re honest, it’s really a roundabout way to tell clients “YOU CANT ALWAYS GET WHAT YOU WANT!”.

While it’s been helpful to frame the core idea that these concepts are all tied together, I think it’s broken in a few ways. Let’s break this down.

“Good” Work

“Good is the enemy of great.” — Jim Collins

When you take time to make something, and your pour your energy into every detail, it’s scary to release it into…

Brave Little Beast

We are a boutique design firm based in Columbus, Ohio. We help small businesses and startups build beautiful websites, logos, and everything in between.

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