In our proanarchy society we (and especially we designers) tend to view rules as a collective stifler to our creativity and a hindrance to the overall process. We think that surly things would be better, easier or more fun if they were done outside the boundaries of some arbitrator handing down of irrational and irrelevant edicts. Surely we know best. We view rules as though their sole purpose is to make life, the game or the product worse. Most of the time that's not a reflection of reality. Most of the time the rules can (or at least are meant to) make things better. When it comes to life or games or Search Engine Optimization, we are often better off playing by the rules.
Seth Godin says that, "Some marketers focus so hard on the facts of their offering that they forget to tell a story at all." That is no doubt true. In the mind of a consumer facts have little value if they cannot be applied to self. You can tell me all the facts in the world about the effectiveness of a bulletproof vest, but that knowledge will mean a lot more to me if you start off with, "Don't look now, but someone's about to shoot you in the chest." And there is my main point: The stories we tell can sell a product, but (as Seth also points out) they can't help a client unless our stories are authentic. I might buy the vest, but once I realize you were lying to me, I'm going to cram it down your throat. Our stories can't be lies ... but they don't have to be true.
With the year still smelling like baby powder, one might imagine that it would be a little more easy-going. This has not proven to be the case for me thus far. Really when you think about it, there has only been one week of 2011, but honestly I feel like I should be buying a Valentines present already. With all the hustle and bustle of last week's events I forgot to get a post ready for this week. (It's shameful; I know.) But, here I am plugging away at getting new content on the site because, as previously mentioned, I am committed to you ... and my SEO. I thought it might be nice to take a look back over the past year, and while we're at I'll tell you what all happened last week too.