Creating content and stepping into the audience’s shoes
Connection is my greatest strength, and it’s the reason that I love communications work. I have created content for a wide variety of communication pieces from a pack of gum to billboards. My strength is putting myself in the audience’s shoes and asking why I would care about this? Why would I read it? I don’t like to waste anyone’s time. One of the first ads that I wrote came with the following instructions: write this so that a woman at the beach reading the paper while supervising three kids will notice the ad. I think about that a lot.
Writing for everyone’s level of attention
I love short pieces and giveaways with a clear, concise message that matters to the recipient. Another strength is working to make each part of the content stand alone. When I work on longer publications like reports and magazines, I want them to work on multiple levels so that if the recipient only looks at the cover or the first few pages, they’ll get the core message(s). Same if they only look at the headlines and callout text. And if they only look at the photos and captions, I want them to walk away with a clear message. I know that that time and attention are at a premium, so I want everything I do to reach many people in many situations.
Sometimes we only have a little bit of attention to work with as content creators: my job is to make it count.
A picture really is worth a thousand words – maybe more. Sometimes it’s the whole thing.
I like images that create a shortcut to meaning, images that evoke feelings and emotions and images that capture imagination. Images can take content to an entirely different and fantastic place so I have always prioritized working with great photographers.
I’ve done annual reports that are one page to 101 pages. This is a recent project summarizing the research activity for the U.S.-Pakistan Centers for Advanced Studies in Energy Project at ASU
(With Arsal Latif. Graphic design by Jena Marble.)
Regular communication has a bigger impact and quarterly newsletters can be an effective format. This is an example of a quarterly newsletter for the U.S.-Pakistan Centers for Advanced Studies in Energy Project at ASU
(with Arsal Latif)
I love 4×9/rack cards! So much messaging power in a compact format that won’t burden the recipient.
Illustrated maps are a fun way to showcase research results or provide a “just like being there” experience. This Walker Basin Research Project map was used as an outreach piece to share project findings with the community (with illustrator Michael Hagelberg).
Oversized postcards are an eye grabbing way to get a message in the hands of stakeholders. No envelopes to open means that your recipient can’t help but look!
This was an explainer-style video for the U.S.-Pakistan Centers for Advanced Studies in Energy Project at ASU. The goal was to convey the key messaging and project stats in under three minutes.
(Graphic design by Qiudi Zhang and video production by Shane Walsh)