Why our money’s on Up for Review to win the 2019 Grand National
It’s Grand National weekend again, which means it’s time for us to use some ever-so-slightly spurious behavioural science to help you choose a horse that’s been underrated by the bookies. It works like this: imagine there are two horses in the race. One’s called The Winner, the other’s called The Loser. The first horse is […]
Schwexperiment #1: Does alliteration have magical powers?
At Schwa HQ, hardly a day goes by without someone talking about the rhyme-as-reason effect. In a nutshell: if a statement rhymes, you’re more likely to think it’s true. (Think: A Mars a day helps you work, rest and play.) But is the phenomenon limited to rhyme? We had a sneaky suspicion the effect of […]
Time to redefine your brand voice?
When I started as a bright-eyed, bushy-tailed business writer, my tone of voice projects felt different from how they feel today. Back then, it was often about proving that almost everyone prefers natural writing to formality, or explaining there wasn’t really that much of a distinction between ‘B2B’ and ‘B2C’. Fast forward to 2019, and […]
Could a mantra change your company culture?
Knowing ‘an apple a day keeps the doctor away’ might encourage you to eat more healthily. But could a mantra change the way people behave at work, too? We think it could. What’s a business mantra? It’s any phrase or saying that’s easy to repeat and sticks in people’s heads. Used well, it’s a subtle […]
Hiring managers, don’t lose your best candidates
You’ve got your employer brand. You’ve got your EVP (employee value proposition). You’ve got potential candidates. So why, just as those candidates delve deeper, do you cool off? Perhaps you don’t even know you’re doing it. But if the personal, upbeat style of your careers pages or recruitment campaigns (join the family, be part of […]
What’s a tone of voice, and why do you need one?
A tone of voice is a way of communicating that’s unique to your brand. Think of Innocent’s friendliness, First Direct’s straightforwardness and Virgin’s naughtiness. The idea is that by using the tone of voice consistently, from TV ads to Ts & Cs, people always get the same impression of who you are. There are all […]
Who’s really reading your writing?
At the start of their book ‘Nudge’, Richard Thaler and Cass Sunstein make a distinction between ‘Econs’ and ‘Humans’. Econs, they say, make decisions rationally, never letting their emotions get in the way. However complicated a decision, they’ll always think it through logically and end up making the perfect call (unlike Humans). That distinction’s based […]
The golden rule for choosing a business name
If you’ve ever Googled around for naming advice, you’ll have seen all the usual tips like ‘don’t choose a name that’s hard to pronounce’ and ‘make sure the domain name’s available’. Those are fine, and you should absolutely follow them, but they won’t really help you decide your company name. The fact is there’s only […]