Joe Miller

A Fall Isn’t a Fail

By Joe Miller / August 29, 2018

When I was a kid I knew how to fall. At least, it seems that way now. Probably I didn’t think about falling or much of anything else that seemed like the consequence of an action. So when I fell it was a surprise. And I bounced back up.  Kids are rubbery, as we know,…

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It’s Not Good Work If It Doesn’t Work

By Joe Miller / July 11, 2018

It doesn’t matter if it’s healthy branding or a remodeled bathroom, the first questions are: Does it work? Does it do what your client needs it to do? No leaks?   That’s why the 2018 Gold Aster Awards we received mean a lot to us. They recognize quality and effectiveness in healthcare branding and marketing. In our cases, one…

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Not a Brand Guru

By Joe Miller / March 29, 2018

  I am not a brand guru. I don’t claim to stand at branding’s burnished edge. Our offices don’t overlook Madison Avenue, or the Thames. I don’t sit in an Eames chair, or play ping-pong in the office. (That would be cool, though…) From where I sit in our gritty brick building, this Healthy Branding…

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Take a Position and Own It.

By Joe Miller / September 29, 2017

Yeah, we know how to take a position. That willingness to take a risk and act differently, as long as we’ve done our homework, manifests in many ways. Yesterday we pitched something to a client (we won’t say who) that we wouldn’t have pitched even a few years ago. It was an idea, a concept,…

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Hi! I’m Anna Richard: Design Intern

By Joe Miller / June 28, 2017

Hi, I’m the new designRoom intern, Anna Richard. I’m a Kent State graduate with a BFA in Visual Communication Design, specializing in typography and typeface design. I don’t have a favorite font, but if I had to pick one, it’d be Greta Mono. In fact, I’m also working for Google this summer, fixing typefaces in…

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Message in a Needle

By Joe Miller / February 20, 2017

A message in a needle. It’s not quite the kind of messaging I’m used to. Normally I’m cobbling together the right words for a client, to capture the essence of a brand, a promise, a benefit, a selling proposition. Or writing a clumsy, but heartfelt, blog. This is different. It’s not a bottle floating in…

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Top Twelve Holiday Songs

By Joe Miller / December 15, 2016

Here are my top twelve holiday songs. (It would have been thirteen with the Mr. Grinch song.) They’re good, they’re bad. They’re mine. And all of them mean something to me. If you like, share some of yours! I’ll start slow and cool: 1. Santa Baby, Eartha Kitt Ya’ll don’t know nothing bout this… a sable…

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Simple Ways to Fall

By Joe Miller / October 31, 2016

I know a lot of simple ways to fall. Here’s a selection of my current favorites. I didn’t include the song I wrote, titled appropriately enough, A Simple Way to Fall. Perhaps I will in a future blog. Feel free to share your own simple ways. Fall Classic Indians and Cubs in the World Series. An…

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Summer Fun, Until You Get Burned

By Joe Miller / July 12, 2016

Summer fun? What’s so fun about summer? If you’ve been burned like I have, you might want to apply a thick coat of all purpose SPF summer screen. Burning Being fair-skinned almost to the point of opacity, the sun turns me red in no time. I need to turn that red into a tan. It’s…

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If you were a color…

By Joe Miller / June 28, 2016

If you were a color, what would your name be? No, this isn’t that game in which you combine the names of your first pet and the street you grew up on to make your porn name. This is real world color naming. And there are literally tens (if not hundreds) of thousands of silly, cool, bizarre,…

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UP JUMPED SPRING! MOTIVATION

By Joe Miller / March 18, 2016

My motivation is being hit with a case of Up Jumped Spring, one of my favorite seasonal jazz tunes, and one of Freddie Hubbard’s best. It’s a tune that feels like what happens when spring jumps up (thankfully a bit early this year). It delightfully messes with my motivation and direction. Different music. Different clothes. Windows open. Furniture…

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SEO

SEO is About Audience

By Joe Miller / January 25, 2016

Before anything else, SEO is about audience. Courtesy of Rodney Dawson Principal/Project Coordinator, Great Lakes Tech Solutions, LLC You want the people you’re marketing to to be able to find you, right? You want the almighty Google Search to list you at at or near the top of a search result, right? So before starting any other SEO…

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Joe Blog Image

Ending Leads to Beginning

By Joe Miller / January 11, 2016

All through Charlie Parker’s bebop tune, Anthropology, practically every ending leads to beginning. It’s a trait peculiar to bebop, and a lot of jazz music in general. The syncopated phrases seem to end, only to push you forward to the next phrase. Every harmonic cadence (an ending of sorts) pushes forward to another key, a chord,…

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Semicolon Tattoo

Semicolon

By Joe Miller / November 19, 2015

I like to use a semicolon. A semicolon can serve a good purpose in a sentence and a story, as a substantive pause; a signal to breathe that doesn’t impede forward progress. For me and many others, it’s also an icon. A message. And a movement — the Semicolon Project. I wear a semicolon on my…

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Preparing for Change

Preparing for Change

By Joe Miller / November 10, 2015

A guest blog contributed by Gary Humble of Pinnacle Partners. You have heard it said before — “Change is coming.” The truth is, change is always happening around us, whether we acknowledge it or not, especially in the behavioral health industry. From technology to mergers and acquisitions to new therapeutic interventions, change is constantly upon…

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Coughlin Group

A Healthy Brand Story

By Joe Miller / October 29, 2015

We love clients like Jeanne Coughlin. We love all of our clients, of course, but we have a rather long history with Jeanne, having helped develop her brand, the Coughlin Group, through the years. Her brand has grown and evolved, as all brands must. So last year, we partnered with her again to make her…

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Let's Face Herion

Let’s Face Heroin Addiction

By Joe Miller / September 18, 2015

We shared this heroin addiction campaign blog a year ago. It is reposted because the situation is not getting better. (Blog amended and edited on September 29, 2016.) After hearing and reading comments from good, smart people saying how pissed they are at the cost of an Epipen versus an overdosing addict’s access to Narcan and that we…

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Music Notes

Messaging and Music

By Joe Miller / June 11, 2015

It is well researched and well documented that a simple tune can amplify any message. So unless you’re a Keats, a Shakespeare, or a Maya Angelou, you should probably set your messages to music if you want them to be remembered. We see messaging and music done well in a lot of marketing and advertising. We…

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Joe-TradeShow-Blog-Header

Trade Show Good, Bad, and Ugly

By Joe Miller / March 10, 2015

We have witnessed trade show good, bad and ugly. For as many businesses that we see do great shows, there are always a bunch of bad and ugly ones. Why is that? I guess that’s why we’re writing about it. Plus, we are attending a few trade shows this spring and summer. So is it a…

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Joe-Images vs Words Blog-Header

Images Versus Words

By Joe Miller / February 12, 2015

In the battle of words versus images, who wins? Here’s my recurring scenario: Images are everything. Nobody reads anymore. Media is all about the image. That’s what I’m told, even by clients (though they very much care about the copy I write for them). Being the contrarian that I am, I know beyond doubt that…

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My-White-Christmas

My White Christmas

By Joe Miller / December 17, 2014

I’ve had my white Christmas, and it was enlightening. Among other things, the holidays for me mean once-a-year kind of projects, both here at dRC and in my music career. The holiday card-making I’ll leave for Chad to write about. I’m going to share my holiday music work. Last year through the holidays I played…

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Google

I Learn Everything on the Internetz, and Cat Videos.

By Joe Miller / November 18, 2014

Everything I know today that’s worth anything I learned on the internetz. I Googled heroin addiction today. Not because I’m an addict or trying to become one or need to treat one. But I have a meeting with actual addiction experts about a prospective gig and I want to become an expert. Really fast. A…

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Typography: Floundering in a Sea of Design

Typography: Floundering in a Sea of Design

By Joe Miller / August 12, 2014

I have a great fondness for typography, especially type layout. Since I can’t sketch or draw or design, in the office I’m a text-generating island floundering in a sea of designers. And I swallow a lot of water fighting to stay afloat. The last time we wrote about typography I wrote of my love for Arial, the…

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Tag Lines: Experience the Difference. Then Make a Good One.

Tag Lines: How to Make a Good One

By Joe Miller / July 31, 2014

“Experience the Difference.” “Tomorrow’s Solutions, Today.” “The Strength to Be There.” “Excellence Through Total Quality.” “We Make It Better.” “Ask Why.” These are actual tag lines. Not much about these lines is appealing to an actual person. They could be connected to medical equipment or banks or lawn mowers. Not one illuminates a unique market…

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