We’re going to let you behind the Bro curtain for a minute, and share with you a simple test you can do to ensure your content doesn’t drown in a sea of white noise as soon as you launch it. We like to call this the C.S.T. (Common Sense Test). And it’s composed of one ultra-scientific question:

“Would I really do it?”

Since we all work in the crazy world of marketing (if you don’t, thanks for reading our weekly newsletter anyway, especially you… Uncle Doug), it’s easy to forget that we’re also consumers. Even though we may not always be the target market, we still consume media like human beings. We know what we respond to, and, well, what annoys the heck out of us.

So, let’s C.S.T. some C.T.A.’s (Calls To Action), and show you how this complex test works:

Call to Action: Call 1-800-XXX-XXXX
Question to ask yourself: Would I really call this 1-800 number? Probably not, especially if it was on the radio or billboard. Tough to write something down, while traveling 70mph. If your content is that interesting, people will Google you when they get home or ask Siri to find you.

Call to Action: Scan this QR code
Question to ask yourself: Would I scan it? (Probably not. Especially not on a billboard…or an airplane banner? You serious?!)

Call to Action: Watch our video
Question to ask yourself: Would I watch this video…all the way until the end?

Call to Action: Share
Question to ask yourself: Would I ever share this? Maybe with people I don’t like?


And that, folks, is the magical C.S.T. Pretty mind blowing, huh? Yes, we’re well aware that you can’t just go to your client and/or creatives with the results from your focus group of one and kill their prized, brilliant idea. But it allows you to ask the follow up question of, “What would need to change to get me to take this action?” And then provide constructive feedback (with a smile, of course).

We know it seems insanely simple, but in the words of Steve Jobs, “Simple can be harder than complex.”


Always put yourself in your consumer’s shoes, and try to look at your brand content like a real person would—not like a marketing robot.

Two young women with laptop, laughing