Archive for the ‘business’ Category


May 15, 2009

Clients at Agora this weekend:

Wild Goose
Igloo Press
Wholly Craft
Adam Brouillette
Jen Adrion
Mike Litzau
Dan Wilburn
Rad Dog
Lucky Ladle
Available Light

See you there.

Clients on twitter

March 18, 2009


@jenisplendid & @jenishusband



















Help The Candle Lab after the Grandview fire, this Tuesday night (2/3), 7 – 9pm

January 21, 2009

[Update, 2/1: This event was postponed on 1/27 due to the snow!  We have rescheduled it for this Tuesday, 2/3.  Come out!]

[Note: There’s a chance this might be rescheduled so it doesn’t conflict with the COSI Tweetup (thanks for the heads-up @Irene_ExpCols).  What do you think?  Please weigh in.]

[Update, 1/21, 11:45am: This isn’t going to be rescheduled.  Make it happen and come to both, if you can.]

Here’s the deal.

A BUNCH of local businesses were affected by last Saturday’s by the fire in Grandview a couple weeks ago.

There are still a lot of unknowns at this point, in terms of who is going to need what, but one thing’s for sure: people are going to need some help.  From us (you and me).

My hope is that we’ll have a coordinated effort underway soon to help ALL the businesses involved, in a meaningful, responsible way.

And that there will be plenty of opportunities to do so.

Until then, however, if you’re looking for a way to help, here’s one fun, social way you can:

Pour Your Own.  Then Have Them Pour One For You.

When: Tuesday (2/3), from 7 – 19 pm

Where: The Candle Lab (Worthington location) + House Wine

What: Lounge in the Lab after hours, get to know Steve and Katesha, pour your own custom candle, then, while the wax cools, step next door and enjoy a glass of vino.

How much it’ll cost: $16 (one candle + one glass of wine.)

Why: Because you care.

Never been to The Candle Lab before?  Now’s the time.  Already a Lab member?  Share your love.  (Didn’t know you could become a member?  Come hither.)

Bring your spouse.  Bring your BFF.  Bring a neighbor.  Invite your twitter and Facebook friends.  Come show some love.

Here’s a map.

If you’re coming, maybe RSVP in the comments, if you want.

[Note: Since this is about supporting local businesses in their time of need, not tools, it’s worth mentioning that being on twitter isn’t a prerequisite for joining us, and neither is blogging or being on facebook, etc. OK?]


December 7, 2008


Chances are good

October 9, 2008

I’m 95% behind on pretty much everything in my life right now.

Not a complaint, just an observation; it’s good to be busy.

Just need an intern, is all.

Plus 85% of it’s interchangeable parts of a BIG project involving the total integration of my work and personal lives to the point of: It’s Just What I Do Because It Interests Me.

Anywhere, anytime.  Work hours?  What’s that.

Building that bridge.

And following — no, chasing — passion, both mine and others.

Until everything I do (and don’t do) (paid or otherwise) is driven by a single unifying purpose: to help build a local living economy in Columbus.

In other words: making things better.

Paying-gig-wise, without exception, ALL the people I’m working with these days — 100% — are smarter, more creative, and exponentially more interesting than I am.

That’s by design, of course — I don’t have an inferiority complex.

They’re all so just f**king cool.

Case in point: Little Alouette.

Based right here in Columbus, OH.

A true, small-family-biz: Renaissance Mom, Artisan Wood-Working Dad, and two ‘wee ones,’ crafting wooden toys by hand, with love.

Using Ohio Maple whenever possible…

And finishing each product with certified organic seed oil!

In other words: all the savvy moms dig Little Alouette.

(Probably you should, too.)

REALLY feeling this Lil Ellie Roller right now:

Maple Lil Ellie Roller Toy

And this Balance Toy:

Solid Wood Bowler Hat Man Weights and Balance Toy

Of course, I’m biased; it’s impossible for me to be objective, they’re my clients — I believe in what they do.

So if you don’t feel you can trust me, tune into some of the chatter here, here, here, and here.

Plus, you know who else loves them?

Whole Foods — read about that here.

And say you really want to be the cool uncle (or whatever), bundle one of LA’s treasures with this here onsie from Skreened:

Like a wee sartorialist in training.

[Update, 12/12: check out Little Alouette and Skreened on Good Day Columbus with @jdiloretto from a couple weeks back here and here, respectively.]

skreened + brilliant = 3327 n high

August 21, 2008

eViL pLaN:

effective 9/1, i’ll be operating from a new office inside the new skreened retail/design shop at 3327 n high in clintonville.

on that same block: central city, seagull, and embassyplus, last i heard, a possible new thai carryout in the old modified soul space right next door… (fell through, apparently.)

not to mention pattycake, element, wholly craft, amyd, sage, giorgio, studio 35, black market, northstar and all the other awesomeness going on in clintonville right now.

all just in time for the terrible twos:

Skreened Columbus Grand Opening



July 11, 2008

there’s something pleasing about this.

i’ve never worked with idea sandbox.

i’m not a client; i haven’t paid them any money.

yet, on a monthly basis, they’re willing to send me ideas about how to think and work more creatively.

in addition to the assorted cocktail napkin wisdom they already share on their blog.

on top of that, when i chose to opt-in, they sent a personal message of thanks and expressed interest in brilliant.

they’re professional marketers, i’m not.

they help me by sharing tips and tricks for free.

simple, right?

i know a lot of other people do it, too.

but they don’t send membership cards.

[update 8/11: i love when people get it to the point of being able to articulate our strategy better than i ever could.]

love is a circular transaction

June 26, 2008

(thought and well-turned phrase courtesy of brains on fire.)

doing my best not to sound like a blathering fan boy with a crush… but we got a little love from advertising’s red-stilettoed superhero, advergirl, today.

“fantastic execution.”

it’s GREAT to hear feedback like that — especially when you’re navigating with little else besides your gut.

amyd seems to feel the same way

i think it works because:

(a) we’re genuinely passionate about it;

(b) it helps us connect with people over something BIGGER than ourselves (jeez, guess that’s a brains on fire thought, too);

(c) it fuels collaborative partnerships; and

(d) it shows people there’s another way.

that you can be a not-only-for-profit.  and do well by doing good.

which is how i got the idea for brilliant in the first place: working with inspiring clients who have larger purposes at the heart of their organizations other than just profit.

all of which is roughly the equivalent of our five-step recipe for how to change the world.

so, thanks advergirl and amyd.

we you both.

[note: an old thought, had many times before by countless other people, but the real story here is how marvelous technology is. how it’s levelled the playing field. and enabled someone like me, here, to have access to some of the brightest minds in whatever biz, wherever they are. to listen and learn. to converse. and their willingness to share, rather than hoard. all part of the aforesaid circular transaction. isn’t it great?]

greener grocer: a new CSA

June 23, 2008

couple weeks ago i had the chance to sit down with michael jones of local matters and the greener grocer for a bit.

sharp guy.  doing all sorts of wonderful stuff.

we talked about connecting the dots in columbus.

e.g., a bunch of us are working towards the same common-good goals — albeit within different, but interconnected, building blocks, in some instances — why not do it together?

the sum is greater than its parts.  etc.

there’s already a proven international model for this in the form of BALLE networks, so there’s no need to reinvent the wheel.

whether it’s jennie, daniel, michelle, adam, jen, etc etc [insert the names of, like, 50 other people making it happen right now], i can’t tell you how many times i’ve had conversations with people interested in something like this.

a business alliance for a local living economy — an economy that sustains itself, our communities, and a healthy environment.

the time is right, no?

wherever these conversations lead, if we’re successful in pulling something together, no doubt local matters will play a major part. they’re doing inspired work.

on saturday, we were a bit late getting down to the grillmaster’s festival at the north market but we managed to catch part of michael’s presentation.

here he is slicing and dicing.

(jami says he looks like steven keaton, a high compliment…)

served up a beautiful salad with grilled pears and a nice vinaigrette that you can get inside the market at the greener grocer.

accessible and informative.

then we went inside to poke around a bit and found out about their urban CSA.

(for an intro into CSAs, check out lisa’s great post from last year.)

sign up, and starting next monday, june 30th, here’s what you get:

…weekly boxes of beautiful, tasty produce from various local growers who follow sustainable farming practices, including minimal or no use of chemical-based pesticides or herbicides….

Weekly food boxes will contain a bag of our house salad mix plus 5-7 different kinds of produce, with seasonal variation based on availability. Included in each weekly box will be information about the growers, their farming practices, and a delicious recipe for preparing the food.

As an extra incentive, The Greener Grocer will donate two food boxes for every ten paid boxes to the Clintonville Resource Center’s food pantry program.

the cost of a share for the 20-week program is $600 ($30 a week).  you can pay in full, up front, or (like us), using a credit card as a guarantee, purchase a share using their payment plan.

  • $150.00 at the time when you submit your application
  • $150.00 by July 15th
  • $150.00 by August 15th
  • Final payment of $150.00 by September 15th

there are two sites where you can pick up your weekly food box:

  • Clintonville Resource Center
  • The Greener Grocer (curb side pick-up available between 4PM-6PM. Just call ahead and identify your vehicle!)

and memberships can be pro-rated, too, if you’re late getting in.

[note: the website has 6/24 as the start date, but all the material at the market said 6/30.]

been wanting to try something like this for a while, so it should be a great learning experience. plus it’s the perfect chance to support an organization that’s making things better.

[ps. identity design by element.]


June 2, 2008

new day, new clients collaborative partnership…

met the folks from original columbus last week.

they’ve taken over the old tigertree spot at 17 e brickel — next to the art exchange and catty corner to tasi.

good peoples.

they’ve signed on to build and develop — and they’re doing it pro bono.

why? because they believe. and rock. literally (ryan stolte-sawa is a member of flotation walls).

if ANYBODY — individual, business, non-profit, whatever — wants to work collaboratively on a community project for the common good, get in touch.

if you’ve been seeing these stickers around town (or received one) and are wondering what they’re about, get in touch.

if you want to help pass them out to your favorite neighborhood businesses (or just slap one on your scoot), get in touch.

if you have a scoot and want to ride with me, get in touch.

if you work at a media outlet like alive or cd101, and want to donate some ad space/time, get in touch.

if you work at a creative agency and want to lend some expertise…

nobody owns it. everybody can use it. anybody can improve it (thanks doc).

meeting with folks from the columbus music co-op and local matters later this week.

anybody else want to pitch in?

hop out of bed with a smile

May 28, 2008

via my wall from that young isaac retrospective last year.


high parody

May 22, 2008

made out like a bandit with the coveted “i’m daniel fox and i’m a hack” shirt for a fraction of the original $965.99 retail price at skreened’s $1-screwed-up-t-shirt-day sale the other day.

what a steal.

they call me slim

May 21, 2008

ok. things are ready to start happening finally.

if you look over here, you’ll see i’ve got a new online hub of sorts.

poke around a bit, and you’ll see that the site for brilliant is up!

thanks to adam and jen at i love treefort for that (their business and personal websites have just been updated recently, too, take a look).

they also threw a site up over here to help the victims of the hit-and-run last week at haiku. there’s a meeting tonight at 6:00 at junctionview for anybody interested in helping pull resources together for that cause.

brilliant is based on two ideas:

(1) work only with clients we believe in

(2) do something worth talking about

take a quick spin around the site. i think we’ve only got, like, eight of the client profiles up for now, but we’ll be doing the rest soon. and hopefully adding a bunch more.

if we already work together and you know somebody who you think might fit the bill, get us in touch.

if you’re reading this and we haven’t met yet, we should.

and, as far as the do-something-worth-talking-about-part, if you follow me on twitter, you’ll see that i’m going to be riding around town (bike or scooter, haven’t decided) today, passing out 1,000 Buy Local stickers to businesses city-wide (or, as far as i can pedal/the vespa breaks down) as the first ingredient of a collaborative campaign.

so if you want to get in touch today, call my cell or send an email. i’ve got my handheld thingy.

local (small) business blogs

May 20, 2008

not a comprehensive list, by any means. just a few i’ve seen lately. it’s always interesting to see how people use the platform.

bakery gingham

paradise garage

pattycake vegan bakery

sole classics


b1 bicycles



clintonville outfitters


luck bros.


April 25, 2008

if you would’ve told me six months ago that it’d take six months to get all the content to treefort for the website and that, in the end, it’d only be, like, six sentences, i would’ve said you’re nuts.

but it is what it is — no more.

and in this case, though what we say and how we say it is important, what we don’t say is just as important — if not more.

no hyperbole. just the truth. trusting that the right people will get it. and that if we create the right preconditions for something to happen, it might.

also, the presupposition that nobody cares. especially about a category like insurance. it’s liberating once you accept that.

the way i figure it, people are pretty smart. especially the people i like working with.

smart people doing interesting work.

so it’d be pretty stupid to try and convince people that our products are somehow better than everybody else’s, right?

or that, somehow, our level of customer service is — this is my favorite — “unprecedented,” as another local agency would have you believe.

no, i’d rather not waste your attention. i’d rather see if we can’t give people an altogether different reason for doing business with us than everybody else.

so: no advertising. no direct mail.

getting pummeled with messages? not by us.

don’t even have to do business with us to appreciate that.

instead, how about creating something that actually adds value?

something meaningful. something that might actually make a difference or make peoples’ lives easier. or change the world on our clients’ behalf.

so we decided to follow our passion and do something we’ve always wanted to do: a campaign to support and promote the local businesses that help set our city apart.

the first element is this sticker, which you’re going to see popping up all around town in the windows of your favorite, local independent businesses.

from there, we can do anything with this. but we can’t do it ourselves. have some ideas? want to help?

your participation is key if we’re going make this work and have a measurable impact.

if you’re a business owner or an engaged citizen looking to get involved, get in touch.

run a business and need a sticker? need a sticker to give to your favorite business?

i’ve got 1,000, and as soon as treefort finishes building the website, they’re going up. after that, we’ll probably have a little ho-down for anybody who’s interested in playing a part.