December 2021

It's the end of the year

Is there anything cosier than a cat in front of a fire? Modelled here by our own Salem.

How are you holding up?

Today is the winter solstice! Can you believe we’re already nestled in the depths of winter? 

Personally, I find winter hard. It’s a time of the year in which the things I love have died back or are sleeping. I’m an outside lady… I like to be in the garden getting grubby, outside in the woods finding fun things, swimming somewhere beautiful, yomping up something for a view and all round getting happily muddy while I do it. 

But winter is a time in which the ground lies empty, cold and quiet. The things I love don’t play in the winter.

I remember telling an elderly gardening friend about this, and he told me “It’s time for the ground to rest now”. 

The idea of the ground resting took me by surprise. While I live in the UK, I’m from South Africa originally, and winter back home is more of a break from the heat than anything else. The ground doesn’t rest. It flourishes after the rain. 

But here, the ground rests in winter. It sleeps until the spring. And when it comes alive again - what a change to behold. 

Winter is time for us to let our gardens recharge.

And I can’t but help feel that *this* winter is a time for us all to rest and recharge too. 

It’s been a year. Let’s put it like that shall we? you can add your own descriptor if you like (and do share it with me… I’m ridiculously intrigued). 

Tonight is my last night in the office before I switch the computer off until the new year. 

I’m exceedingly grateful for the break and the time to be with family - even if it’s at a distance with new travel restrictions.

But we’re not the only ones that need a rest. Your audience needs a rest too, your list, your customers. Rest is important for all of us. 

Rest helps us balance, and your emails should be a well maintained mix of nurture, sales and *rest*. Be careful of sending too much and not allowing enough time between sales campaigns for them to be meaningful.

In the past three weeks, two of my favourite clothing/ outdoors companies did FOUR sales. In three weeks. 

Without rest in between, those sales are meaningless to me. They lose their potency, their efficacy. I’m left with the feeling that sales aren’t special/ urgent and there will always be a better deal around the corner… 

With more space in between, I would have had time to recuperate, and the impact from sales is far more potent. 

Does your list need a rest from you? Or is it time for you to spring into action? 

Either way, I hope you get to rest during this winter too. 

This month we’ve collated a smorgasbord of goodies from around the internet - I hope they inspire you ahead of the new year!

Here is a little bit of brain fun in the shape of some music that is said to help you be more productive:

The psychology world has had a little break through in how we understand how algorithms help animals make decisions

If you’re a fan of cognitive bias, you might like this! I spoke at Marketing Meetup about Cognitive Bias and how it ruins our conversion rates - you can check out the full recording here:


We also released our very own new cognitive bias buster cheat sheet to celebrate the start of the new book, you can sign up for a copy by clicking the image below:

Here are some fun things we found on our travels around the internet this month:

Here's a 250 year old font!

Here are some examples of using optical illusions in marketing, how they work on our brains quite an interesting read (or at least a little fun nosey at some classic optical illusions)


This twitter thread is great, full of good landing page feedback


And here are some good pieces of content that are worth reading!

Love these conversion - centred design tips for email. Includes use of colour, directional cues, whitespace and usage of photography

Ashton recently discovered Cole Schafer of Honey Copy and his awesome newsletters. Definitely a marmite style of writing. I enjoy it!

Dan Oshinsky released his December version of Not Another Newsletter - which is not an email... but a google doc... (you read right)

We adore ReallyGoodEmails and their amazing archive of email inspiration - one of the most underrated sources of content and design inspiration out there

Here are a few select ninja blogs you might want to dip into:

5 reasons you should throw Buyer Personas in the bin
What is Customer Journey Mapping?
Sales Pipeline vs Sales Funnel

We stumbled across the free Open University courses, with modules taken from their degree programs

Think with Google have been inspiring us with a whole load of bite-sized videos based on their own research and some industry leaders

Litmus released their 2021 State of email report


(Yup - I’ve added our own UTM parameters in there just to mess with their lead sources. #gremlin)

And that's a wrap for this month!

Rest up - can't wait to share some amazing new things with you in the new year <3

Happy festive season to your and your loved ones

xx Kenda

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The Marketing Brainbox provides marketing and psychology-based content, straight from the horses mouth - or in this case from our Prime Ninja, Kenda Macdonald! This monthly email will keep you informed about industry trends, useful insights, strategy and much more.

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