July, 2013

What’s in a name? Choosing the right name for your business

Last week most of the papers and the TV were awash with speculation over baby names. That no doubt will turn into weeks of stories about the origin of names, the meaning of names, in fact anything to do with names.

Well, names are important. A good one can set you up for life, and according to an article in The Week from March 2012  they can even affect our personalities and the choices we make. Apparently, this belief goes back to the Romans who had a phrase – nomen est omen, or ‘name is destiny.’ Just look at how many actors and performers have changed their given names for something a tad more exotic or memorable.

It’s the same with businesses too. Naming your fledging company is just as important as naming your baby – you’re going to have to live with it for a long time. So you want it to be memorable for the right reasons, and for it to have positive connotations. You need to spend time on it and do your research. But where do you start?

Bronwyn Durand of JupiterJasper is a marketing mentor for small businesses, and as The Brand Whisperer, she  has a special interest in using what makes a business differentto develop its commercial identity. Here’s what Bronwyn has to share on naming a business…

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Five things you should know before dealing with the media

Guest post by Nicky Rudd, MD, Padua Communications

Dealing with journalists can be tricky – especially if you’re not used to it. I asked Nicky Rudd, seasoned PR practitioner and managing director of Padua Communications, to share her experience. 

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The power of quietness

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about my need for silence when I write.  It followed a frustrating and unproductive morning of being driven bonkers by the banging, drilling and sawing a couple of doors away.

Robert Stubbings  a former advisor manager with Business Link South East, has just sent me a link to a post that gives a slightly different angle on the relationship of quietness to productivity.

It’s by Roberta Matuson, CEO, Human Resource Solutions based in the USA and is titled ‘The link between quietness and productivity

Roberta points out that it’s often the quiet people who are the most productive and she gives some great examples of why she believes that to be so.

While it’s not exactly related to my post it does show how powerful a force quietness can be. Definitely food for thought and I hope you enjoy reading it.

Thanks to Robert for sending it to me and to for Roberta of course for agreeing to let me use it.




The art of translation – guest post by Rachel Giles

I’m in the process of getting a page of copy translated into around 12 different languages to promote my localisation service to business people who don’t have English as a first language.

I’ve written the copy and have the translators lined up. On the surface it’s a relatively simple task: just a few paragraphs of copy to introduce and explain a service.

But the point of the localisation service is to make sure that copy that’s been translated into English flows and reads well. It needs to get the message across and engage the audience too. So, of course I need to be sure that happens with my copy in each of the languages it’s translated in to.

Going through this process got me thinking about book translations.  We take it a bit for granted when we read classics like Tolstoy’s War and Peace and Anna Karenina, Flaubert’s Madame Bovary or more modern books such as Blindness by Jose Saramago.

But how on earth does a translator capture the essence and poetry of the original? How do we know that the translator isn’t more talented than the author? And what about those words and phrases that only exist in the original language and not in English?

I decided to ask writer, editor, and publisher, Rachel Giles.

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Are You Ready to Write Your First Book? Guest post by writer’s coach, Leda Sammarco

When people find out I write for a living they often ask if I’m ever going to write a book.  I’ve thought about it and I know that, if I ever get around to it, it will be a factual book rather than non-fiction. And I also know it’s likely to be about my love of Cornwall. But where to start?

Well, I decided to book a session with writer’s coach, Leda Sammarco. It was great! She really helped me think about why I wanted to write the book and who I’d be writing it for. She also gave me lots of information on how to get published.

The session was so useful that I asked her to write a guest post for my blog to help other people who are thinking about writing their first book. I hope it inspires you! Over to you, Leda.

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June client of the month – St Georges Finance

St Georges (no apostrophe!) Finance  is my client of the month for June.

St Georges Finance is an independent funding specialist working mainly in the property sector. Clients include people who want to start property portfolios, SMEs who need finance to buy business property, and residential property developers.

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April Client of the Month – Ashtead Performance Group

April’s client of the month is Simon Aldridge, MD of Ashtead Performance Group (APG).

I’ve worked with Simon for the last five years, ever since he asked me to write the words for APG’s website.

APG works with senior teams to equip them to achieve excellent performance across their business. And therein lay the challenge.

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Cut-out quotes: beautiful papercut art from Ant Design

If you’ve visited my blog before you’ll know I like images created with words:  I’ve written about several artists who work in this way.

I discovered Ant Design’s papercuts the other day and I love them. I know Ant Design as a graphic design agency founded and run by the very talented Kashmira Jhaveri. I also knew that, as well designing materials for corporate clients, Ant Design also has a gift range  but I’d no idea these lovely delicate pieces had been added.

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Client of the month: The Green Cornwall

OK. I admit it. Client of the month isn’t an original idea. I’ve pinched it from friend and frequent collaborator, Robert Games of Padmedia.  Thanks Rob!

I think it’s a great way to let you know what I do, and at the same time, tell you about some of the lovely, inspiring people I work with. And no prizes for guessing how often I’ll be posting it ..

First up is The Green Cornwall - luxury house and holiday cottages on the edge of Bodmin Moor.

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Simple steps for a successful Google AdWords campaign – guest post by web design agency, Padmedia.

Search engine marketing is an effective way to reach a large audience through the results pages, and to generate traffic and leads to your website. It’s effective because it targets people who are already searching for the types of products or services you offer.

There are three dominant tools in search engine marketing – Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Google has always had the largest share and that’s why it’s always best to start with Google AdWords.

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Hello. I'm Elaine, I'm a copywriter and this is my blog.

It's mostly about words and writing - things that inspire me, entertain me, and make me smile. Sometimes it's about things that horrify me so much I want to scream and shout!

I hope you enjoy it and find it useful. And speaking of useful - scroll down and take a look at the Oxford Dictionaries tool.

Click here to find out a bit more about me.

Word Alchemy Blog