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April 12, 2023

Oxford Commas, Video Metrics, and Brain Parasites in Business Owners

Hello Ruth Ann,

This week's newsletter might not be the fastest read. If you aren't involved with video marketing, you can skip the second story, which is a somewhat deeper dive than I usually do here.

I won't back down from using and recommending Oxford commas. I'm sure there's a LinkedIn group for its supporters.

Do you own a cat and a business? If so, you might be infected with toxoplasmosis, which comes from cat poop and is thought to decrease the fear of failure. Kind of like cats, if you think about it.

Til next week,

Ruth Ann Monti

Writing Tips

It's time to discuss the Oxford Comma. I am firmly in the pro-Oxford comma camp.

Oxford commas provide a more precise way to write. Specifically, they signal an immediate end to a shortlist to avoid lumping items together that can mislead, confuse, or amuse. (See what I did there?)

Think of the title of the best-selling grammar book Eats, Shoots and Leaves: are we talking about diet, hunting, or both? And why the abrupt departure from the scene?

Oxford's Bridge of Sighs

Sighs, cries and dies at Oxford.

Credit: kevinrice/Pixabay

Arika Okrent supplied this gem for Mental Floss a decade ago:

"I dedicate this book to my parents, Ayn Rand and God." Talk about a tough childhood!

SEO/Content News

If you're thinking about using video marketing, take a few minutes to watch a Content Marketing Institute Fastchat video with Bynder, a company that manages digital assets, about how to measure video content success.

Brian Kavanaugh, Bynder's Director of Global Field and Customer Marketing, discussed 15 ways to measure content success. I was particularly interested to hear how content performance on different platforms can impact SEO and other success metrics.

Obviously, page load speed and mobile responsiveness are key. But I hadn't thought about measuring how video content reaches a viewer.

Remote directing Netflix

The remote requests data, and the TV transforms it for the end user. Credit: Tumisu/Pixabay

Here's how it works:

  • An API call is a technical term for requesting data to go to your device.
  • The transformation is how quickly and accurately your device displays the data.

When it comes to video, API call speeds and transformation accuracy are vital. This is something to really consider if you're thinking about doing video marketing.

My Content Services

Brain Parasites in Business Leaders?

Danish researchers have found a surprising number of women who tested positive for a form of toxoplasmosis were almost 30% more likely to start their own businesses than those who tested negative.

T. gondii (or just plain TG) wreaked havoc on patients with HIV/AIDS in the last century. It's also dangerous to developing fetuses; in Denmark, all pregnant women are tested for it.

Most people infected with TG don't show any symptoms other than an obsession about checkmarks.*


blue checkmark in circle

Credit: mcmurryjulie/Pixabay

Other studies have linked business leanings and entrepreneurialism with TG infection. The University of Colorado tested 1,495 undergrads and discovered that infected students were 1.4 times more likely to be business majors.

The same researchers tested 197 adults who attended an entrepreneurship conference and found that those infected with TG were 1.8 times more likely to have started a business.

TG, researchers theorize, might reduce the fear of failure.

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