I'm Tom and welcome to my site.

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E-Book Testimonials

"Thomas Clifford has made something useful here. This report will give you some really catchy, useful ideas.

It made me reconsider how I do what I do, so you might give it a look-see, too!" 

Chris Brogan, President, Human Business Works 

"Tom Clifford is by trade a filmmaker. For most of his life, he rarely wrote anything longer than a brief comment in the margin of a script. 

Now, though, he's producing tens of thousands of words a year, first as a Fast Company "Expert Blogger," and then as a writer for the Content Marketing Institute. 

How did Tom go from a non-writer to a prolific and much-read one? His eBook, '5 (Ridiculously Simple) Ways . . . , ' holds some of his secrets."

Mark Levy, Author of "Accidental Genius: Using Writing to Generate your Best Ideas, Insight, and Content"

“Tom is one of the nicest people you’ll ever meet—if you have the privilege to meet him. And he does sterling work as well. But don’t just take my word for it.

Read this free report and you’ll not just love its tone and content, but learn a lot as well.”

Sean D’Souza, Psychotactics.com

“Anyone who wants to improve their writing needs this e-book. A lot of ebooks are short because they just don’t have much substance to offer. They’re not worth your time (and so are many of the long ones, too, for that matter). Tom’s is short because he’s so good at giving you only what you need to know. 

‘5 (Ridiculously Simple) Ways to Write Faster, Better, Easier’ lives up to its promise by example as well as in the words themselves. Tom used the very same techniques he teaches you to write this book. 

And what’s in here is not just a rehash of the same tired ideas you find coming from people who have suddenly fancied themselves as writing gurus. There are tricks in here I never heard of (like the Writing Funnel) and some I had forgotten about and was glad to be reminded of (like Sporadic Writing).” 

Michael Martine, Blog Alchemist, Remarkablogger.com 

Entries by Thomas Clifford (309)


Age of Conversation 3 Book Available Soon

First there was the "Age of Conversation 1."

Then the "Age of Conversation 2."

Now, the long wait for the "Age of Conversation 3" is almost over!

"The Age of Conversation: It's Time to Get Busy" is a collection of short essays from over 300 bloggers, marketers and world-class thinkers. The "brains" behind the book series are Drew McLellan and Gavin Heaton.

Availability is expected to be in April; both physical and ebook versions will be offered. The proceeds will be donated to Make-a-Wish Foundation.

Stop by the Age of Conversation website to read about all the future updates regarding the book.

BTW: These books make great gifts. Just sayin'. =)



Bringing Brands to Life Wins 2010 Strateg-e Award

I'm pleased to share with you that this blog just won the 2010 Strateg-e Award in the "Best Use of Blogs" category.

It's the second time receiving this award, having received it 2009.

I've mentioned this many times before and I'll say it again:

A big heartfelt "thank you" goes out to everyone who made this award possible!
(Um, that would be you!)

My personal goal is to continue providing you with unique insights, information and practical tips that will help you humanize business messages for greater employee or customer engagement.

Your attention is at a premium. Thank you for stopping by, reading, commenting, sharing the articles or spreading the word. You made this award possible.

Thank you.



Strategic Incubator Interviews Me

I recently had a fun and interesting interview with Matthew Ray Scott, Managing Director of The Strategic Incubator, about using documentary storytelling for businesses.

The interview is 43 minutes long and takes a different angle (no pun intended!) than previous interviews I've given.

Here are a few things we covered:

  • How I discovered filmmaking from a busted rock 'n' roll dream.
  • What is the most important thing about creating believable video stories?
  • What is the greatest challenge facing companies in sharing their marketing stories?
  • How has social media changed how companies share their unique stories?
  • What should business owners know about choosing the right communication medium when sharing their marketing story?

We covered many more areas so if you'd like, go ahead and download the interview and play it later on.

And finally. Thank you, Matthew, for having me be part of your amazing network; it was a fun interview!


P.S. While you're at Matthew's site, be sure to check out his blog and other neat interviews:

Gary Vaynerchuk
Pamela Slim
Liz Strauss
John Jantsch
Richard Leider
Jason Fried
Michael Port
Jonathan Fields
Steven Pressfield


What is Our Company’s Purpose? The R-O-I Method 

Have you read Daniel Pink’s new book, “Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us?” If you haven’t picked it up yet, don’t wait too long; this book will forever change how you think about motivating individuals (hint: it’s usually not carrots and sticks).

Pink definitely motivated me to rethink how organizations might use multimedia in ways beyond traditional corporate communication methods. Let’s look at one idea from the book and adapt it for our purposes.

Closing the gap
One of the exercises included at the end of Pink’s book is about closing the gap between perception and reality.

The exercise goes like this:
1. Grab your team or department and give each person a 3 × 5 index card.
2. Have them write down their answer to this question:

“What is our company’s (or organization’s) purpose?”
Now read the answers and see how aligned, or, um, misaligned, your company’s purpose is. Can you start imagining all the various responses you’d hear? Wouldn’t this be a great opportunity to see how people perceive your company’s purpose? And then an opportunity to redefine and clearly communicate your organization’s purpose to everyone; internally or externally?

Imagine how powerful this simple exercise would be in audio.
Here’s how you might go about it.

Part One: (R)ecord
1. Grab your MP3 recorder (or even your old-fashioned Dictaphone!).
2. Audio record as many employees as you feel comfortable answering this question.
3. Optional: Transcribe the recording for easier editing and future reference.
4. Optional: Edit the audio. Nothing fancy– no music, no narration. Keep it impressionistic.

Part Two: (O)bserve
Observe the reactions while playing the recording back to (you choose):
• Your team?
• Your department?
• HR?
• Marketing?
• Employee Communications?
• Executive Leaders?
• The CEO?
• Some combination of the above?

Part Three: (I)mplement
After playing the recording, notice who said what. Use this feedback for future planning, goal setting, improving employee or customer engagement, recruiting, orientation, etc. What about collecting all the responses to create an e-Book for team discussions? The list is endless.

Oh. One more thing.

Before you go shrugging this idea off into the void, think about what Pink says in “Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us.”

“This simple inquiry can offer a glimpse into the soul of your enterprise. If people don’t know why they’re doing what they’re doing, how can you expect them to be motivated to do it?”

Something to think about, isn’t it?


P.S. Originally posted on FastCompany.com


Tom's SpeedLink #16

Enjoy today's roundup...

1. In between frames
Absolutely brilliant little riff from Seth Godin. "Consumers are too smart for the frames. It's the in-between frame stuff that matters. And yet marketers spend 103% of our time on the frames."

2. Why write a book?
And speaking of Seth, his new book, Linchpin, launches today. I finished my advance copy yesterday and it's Seth's finest, IMHO.

3. The basic principles of nonverbal communication -1
Communications master Nick Morgan has a great series on nonverbal communications.

4. 10 Documentaries to look out for in 2010
The Documentary Blog has a round-up of doc's to keep your eye on this year.

5. Edelman Change and Employee Engagement blog
Interesting blog on organizational communications.

6. What’s the meaning of your message?
Do you care about your communications? Thought-provoking piece by Tom Asacker.


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