A love story by Diane Andreoni

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in memory of Lolita, 2011–2012

“Before you get a dog, you can’t quite imagine what living with one might be like; afterward, you can’t imagine living any other way.”

-Caroline Knapp-

When I was a kid I never had a dog. My family did have a pet kitten for a while that my dad found in our house’s window well. My brothers and sisters and I named him, Lido, after my father. He was so cute and tiny. His black fur coat had white blotches on it that looked like they were slopped on with paint. Lido loved taking…


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Original Oil-Painting by Diane Andreoni

my sister

whose eyes were black as coal

and as bright as a child’s

whose beautiful smile presented itself

behind a wavering lip

whose mind was that of an artist

which saw life too clearly

whose heart was filled with love

and felt it too dearly

whose soul grew weak

like flowers without water

whose spirit will grow strong

in all who remember her

my sister

poem by Diane Andreoni

My sister Paula would have been fifty-five years old this year. I’ve always wondered why she chose to die at the young age of forty-two. I don’t think I will…


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“Trillium” I painted this in memory of my mom.

Memories with mom.

Some of the best child-hood memories I have with my mom are of the road-trips our family took out west during summer vacations. My dad was the designated driver and my mom the fearless camp leader. We had a Buick station wagon with three seats. The third seat became the treasured “kids-only” escape hatch when one of us needed a quiet place to sleep. The middle seat was the “kids’ hang-out” where me and my sisters passed the travel time weaving macrame belts, crocheting scarves and needlepointing pillow covers (it was the 1970’s), while my brothers teased…


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Life Lesson # 1

“Give yourself a breast exam. It could save your life.”

I was one of those people that got yearly mammograms for early breast cancer detection. Thinking these annual check-ups were good enough, I rarely gave myself a breast exam. But two and a half years ago, I did, and was shocked to discover a lump in my right breast. It felt large and hard; and it scared me. I worried about having breast cancer and the prospect of dying. My mom recently passed away from Alzheimer’s disease. And one week before I discovered my lump, my…


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After attending the Social Media Strategies Summit in Chicago a couple of weeks ago, an idea rose to the top for me: in order for brands to be relevant to people in today’s socially focused world, they need to be authentic. To do this they should understand who they are by asking, “Why?” Why should people care what I have to say? Why should they listen? Why should they act? Only after a brand can honestly answer these questions will they have a great story to share with people.

A good story should reflect a brand’s human side. In social…


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Marketers often rely on storytelling to connect with people emotionally. But think about how boring a story would be without the power of music. Music amplifies emotion in a brand’s story. It emotionally moves people. So this is another way a brand can tap into consumers’ values.

I have a personal story about how one brand used music to capture the hearts of my friends and me. American Family Insurance ran a great TV spot during the 2015 Grammy Awards. You can watch it here, https://www.youtube.com/user/amfam. The commercial suggests that the brand is dedicated to helping people achieve their dreams…


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original oil-painting by Diane Andreoni

I’ve been thinking a lot about brand value lately. I’m wondering what it really means to me as a consumer. I know that there are certain things that I value in life. But do these same values transcend into the brands that I stay loyal to?

I definitely like brands that provide a human touch. Perhaps this is because I value these attributes in myself. My friends and family know me to be a happy person. It’s important for me to show compassion. To be an optimist. I like to surround myself with happy people. …

Diane Andreoni

Rock 'n Roll

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