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Favorite Quotes to Guide and Inspire

Mark Twain once said, “The difference between the almost right word and the right word … [is] the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.”

Indeed. Words are powerful and illuminating. And on those rare moments when lightning strikes in the form of a quotation, I like to type it into a special file that I keep squirreled away in my computer.

Here are just a few of the bolts from the blue that I have collected over the years. Each springs from a lifetime of experience and offers a world of wisdom. Perhaps one or two will resonate with you and give you guidance or inspiration when you need it most:

“The most important word in the vocabulary of advertising is TEST.” —David Ogilvy

“Advertising is what you do when you can't go see somebody. That's all it is.” — Fairfax Cone

“An idea can turn to dust or magic, depending on the talent that rubs against it.” — William Bernbach

“My definition of an educated man is the fellow who knows the right thing to do at the time it needs to be done. … You can be sincere and still be stupid.” — Charles F. Kettering

“No living being is held by anything so strongly as its own needs.” — Epictetus

“No one cares how the salesman arrives, only that he has something interesting to say when he knocks on the door.” — Dean Rieck

“Promise, large promise, is the soul of an advertisement.” — Samuel Johnson

“The letter sells; the brochure tells.” — Saying in direct marketing

“Soon after a hard decision something inevitably occurs to cast doubt.” — R.I. Fitzhenry

“Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising.” — Mark Twain

“Exuberance is better than taste.” — Gustave Flaubert

“Nothing is more dangerous than an idea, when it is the only one you have.” — Emile Chartier

“The brain is a wonderful organ. It starts the moment you get up and doesn't stop until you get into the office.” — Robert Frost

“To see what is in front of one's nose requires a constant struggle.” — George Orwell

“Confidence comes not from always being right but from not fearing to be wrong.” — Peter T. McIntyre

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” — Thomas Edison

“A problem well-stated is a problem half-solved.” — Charles F. Kettering

“Facts are to the mind what food is to the body.” — Edmund Burke

“You can see a lot just by looking.” — Yogi Berra

“The key to everything is patience. You get the chicken by hatching the egg — not by smashing it.” — Ellen Glasgow

“The best way to have a good idea is to have a lot of ideas.” — Linus Pauling

“Some people see things and say why; I see things that never were and say why not.” — George Bernard Shaw

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