The Menu #40: Ugh I got Covid, and we might be going into a recession

The Menu

By Amanda Natividad | @amandanat

Hi friends! Been awhile since I've sent this. In case you've forgotten who I am or why you're here: You probably know me as @amandanat on Twitter, where I usually write about marketing.

A few weeks ago, Covid finally got me. Though it was fast and furious. On Day 2, my fever spiked at 107 degrees. I was too dizzy to walk straight, muscle spasms felt like a butcher knife stuck in my back, and the chills for 30+ hours had me sleeping in half-hour bursts. But by Day 5, I was already feeling 95% healthy, save for an occasional cough.

I was fortunate to get a Paxlovid prescription which probably helped speed up my recovery. I drank lots of water, Pedialyte and cold-pressed juice, and took several vitamin supplements (vitamin D3; Omega 3; and melatonin) via this post by Justin Mares, which were also recommended by my doctor. I also drank my homemade coldbuster tea with orange and lemon. Recipe is at the bottom of this post.

All in all, a terrible experience that I rate zero stars. 😂 But I sure am glad I caught the milder Omicron variant. My husband and I were lucky that our symptoms were staggered such that we were able to let each other rest during the others' worst symptoms. Our toddler fared well and only had about a day of low-grade fever.

But there is one post-Covid symptom I'm working to overcome. Feelings of depression. I read that in one study, over half of Covid patients experienced depression in the months after recovery. And several friends of mine told me that in their 2-4 weeks post-Covid, they felt a low level of depression and anxiety. Some had unexplainable bouts of crying.

I recall having read about recovered Covid patients having low levels of vitamin D, and even that people with vit D deficiency were 14 times more likely to develop a severe case of Covid. I think it helped that I supplemented with vitamin D, but as I recovered from Covid, I had decreased my intake. When my feelings of depression started creeping up, I reupped my vitamin D (6,000 IU) and also started taking sodium ascorbate (1100 mg of vitamin C). Two days later, I started feeling closer to normal.

📉 Can You Recession-Proof Your Marketing?

April was a slow month for us at SparkToro, and we initially thought our homepage redesign was to blame. While we do think that some of our new copy choices were subpar (we have since re-written), it's more likely that the slowness was due to macroeconomic factors:

  • The S&P 500 had its worst monthly decline since March 2020
  • Inflation is nuts and we're (probably) heading into a recession
  • March is typically the last month for B2B buying cycles
  • ... which means April is typically the slowest month in B2B buying cycles

So now I'm thinking about organic marketing. I'm really glad we haven't depended on large advertising & marketing budgets at SparkToro. Instead, our growth engine is largely fueled by modern content marketing (high-quality content, not classic SEO), events (like Office Hours and guest speaking on others' platforms), our free tools (like our Fake Follower audit), and our occasional newsjacking which... has been a little nuts lately. If you've heard anything at all about Elon Musk and Twitter, there's a good chance you've heard of our recent work too.

If I were a marketer in a more conventional environment, I'd be thinking long and hard about how to make my marketing more sustainable. I'd double down on content programs that are doing well, launch one new content channel if I didn't have one already, and I'd be in lock step with my executive team to make sure I'm positioning them well for PR and event opportunities.

I'll likely write about this in further detail sometime this week, but if you have any questions or thoughts on organic marketing, I'd love to hear them. Reply to this email and let me know.

Oh also, my Content Marketing 201 course kicks off on Tuesday, May 24, and I'll teach students how to take a more sustainable, holistic approach to marketing. There's still time to join.

🍰 Petits Fours

Four bite-sized blurbs linking to interesting content.

🔸 A deep dive into the Indexed Finance DeFi hack in October 2021: 18-year-old Andean Medjedovic stole millions of dollars from a crypto platform. But the sad thing is... you could theoretically make the case he didn't actually steal it. Through a series of "flash loans," or borrowed money that's returned within a preprogrammed transaction he bought up nearly all of the tokens, swapped them out for another token, then exchanged them for a third token (and other tokens) that were worth more.

🔹 Normalize c-sections: We preach that moms need to create painstakingly detailed birth plans, but only about half of births occur on time. And 3 in 10 moms will need a c-section. My friend Maria West interviews an OBGYN about this. (As for me, my frustration is when I looked up recovery advice after my own c-section, I was faced with tons of content that said, "Don't worry, you're still a real mom." Yikes.)

🔸 Remember when JLo's "Love Don't Cost a Thing" challenge bombed? (Wait, she did a challenge?) The replies on this tweet are not only hilarious, but they make for a terrific case study on how brands should NOT launch social media challenges. The best part is the lone Twitter user who participated had her video taken down because it violated the copyright of JLo's song.

🔹 A funny tweet that I am still laughing about four days later: "A cooking competition where contestants make whatever they want but my husband wanders around the kitchen and stands in front of the drawer they need"

🫖 Coldbuster Tea

Drink this if it sounds yummy.

Stir ingredients together in a mug. Let tea bag steep for 5 minutes or just leave it in because you are lazy like me.

(Apologies for the boring, unattractive photo.)

👋 That's all for now!

Hope you enjoyed this week's edition. Chat soon!

Key phrases

Older messages

What people are saying about Content Marketing 201

Sunday, May 15, 2022

I take testimonials seriously. As in, I don't use them in my marketing materials unless I'm absolutely confident that a backchannel reference will sing my (or my brand's) praises behind my

The Menu #39: A new mental model for writing headlines

Monday, April 25, 2022

​ The Menu By Amanda Natividad | @amandanat ​ I still struggle with headlines. But one heuristic that helps me is to think of the piece of content (blog post, newsletter edition, video, thread, etc) as

The Menu #38: A story about imposter syndrome

Monday, April 18, 2022

​ The Menu By Amanda Natividad | @amandanat ​ In one of my first jobs, I was a graphic designer. My first well-recognized piece was a timeline graphic that documented every single executive departure

The Menu #37: Headline ideas for 3 different businesses

Monday, April 11, 2022

​ The Menu By Amanda Natividad | @amandanat ​ I am almost always thinking about content. So here are three free ideas for different types of businesses: 🛍 B2C/ecommerce Characteristics or challenges:

The Menu #36: Your webinar content should never be final...

Monday, March 28, 2022

​ The Menu By Amanda Natividad | @amandanat ​ Many marketers would agree that blog posts should become webinars, webinars should become blog posts, and so on. But it isn't really that simple. I

Sex After 50 Isn't Good — It's Great

Thursday, April 28, 2022

One writer makes her case. ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ TZR logo The Zoe Report 04.27.22 Sex After 50 Isn't Good — It's Great (Relationships) Sex After 50 Isn't Good — It's Great

CNN+Innovation 📺

Saturday, April 23, 2022

A defense of CNN's traditional role as tech innovator. Here's a version for your browser. Hunting for the end of the long tail • April 22, 2022 Today in Tedium: The announcement this week that

Friday Finds (Houellebecq, Magic, Sperm, Songwriting)

Friday, April 22, 2022

Read in your browser here. Hi friends, Greetings from Denver! I just finished two days of planning with the Write of Passage team, and I'm continually amazed by how much more generative you can be

🌱 COP26 has nothing on you

Sunday, October 24, 2021

What hope is there for the rest of Europe? | Isn't Intel ironic? | Finimize Hi Reader, here's what you need to know for October 25th in 3:06 minutes. 🤖 If you love all things crypto, DeFi, NFTs

Is It Okay to Lighten Your Hair In the Sun?

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

The Best Hair Dyes For Dark Hair Is It Okay to Lighten Your Hair In the Sun? This Nicole Kidman-Approved Haircare Brand Launched a Serum To Reduce Gray Hairs 9 Hair Glosses That'll Make Your Color-

Kendall Jenner Wears This Easy Summer Outfit Nonstop & It's GOOD

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Effortless summer dressing, right this way. ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ TZR logo The Zoe Report 06.28.22 Kendall Jenner Wears This Easy Summer Outfit Nonstop & It's <em>Good</

Kim K Just Dropped An Underboob Skims Collection & I'm Low-Key Confused

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Plus, July 4 mani ideas that are festive without being cheesy. ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

Chris Pratt, the People’s Chris, Covers Our July/August 2022 Issue

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

Blockbuster movie star. Beloved coworker. Stand-up dad and all-around good hang. So why is Chris Pratt the subject of so many Twitter pile-ons? He has some theories. View in Browser Men's Health

Gain instant access to all of Men's Health for less than $2 a month

Wednesday, June 29, 2022

A special offer for our newsletter subscribers If you have trouble reading this message, view it in a browser. Men's Health MVP - get All Access for only $20 a year Ready to join? You love the

I Finally Got A Beach Wave Perm—Here's What Happened

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

I was promised the perfect beachy hair of my dreams. ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ TZR logo The Zoe Report 06.28.22 (Beauty) I Finally Got A Beach Wave Perm—Here's What Happened (Hair) I

How to block out fireworks noise

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Plus: The best multiroom wireless speaker system, our favorite sleeping bags for kids, and more ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌

13 Host Gifts That Will Make You the Hero of the Barbecue

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

These things don't have to be capital-G gifts—BBQ Dads appreciate a wide variety of offerings.... ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ Do everything better Tuesday, June 28, 2022 Grilling

Poems from On a Grey Thread and more

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Support June 28, 2022 Celebrate Pride Month by reading all the poems published in Elsa Gidlow's On a Grey Thread (Will Ransom, 1923). “A Happy Song” “The Poet” “This Is Not Love” “You Are

Summertime Announcement

Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Hello to all, We have decided to unwind the clock and take a small hiatus from New York City Hours for the remainder of the summer. Tomorrow's publication will be our last for a couple months, all