Monday, November 9, 2009

Ad's you wouldn't see in the 21st Century

Yea... Sip that cancer stick

If you are a really arrogant jerk!

Read the copy can you say sexist

Same concept

They just took it to the next level

Island of Misfit toys!

The "There's an App for that" ad was bound to be made fun of at some point and Verizon finally figured out how when the new Droid phone dropped. However they will be leaving that motif for their Holiday Ads really make fun of the iphone hard core as seen above.

Personally I think this is a great Ad and its funny and creative. Hyping the benifits of the network over the Features of the iphone.

*For the Record I want an HTC Pro 2, check it out seems like a very cool phone.

Ladies and Gentlemen it looks like there is finally something to compete with the iphone!

Another one I just saw... these are so good

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Who is online

I love this tool from Forrester Research. It offers solid Technographic and Demographic information about who is online and how they use it.

This is the consumer tool

This one is the Business tool

Play with it use it it is very useful.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Great bud wiser Ad

I know budwiser has been known for their ads in the past but this one is great. Even though I don't drink Budwiser this Ad totally makes me want to go to the bar order a cold one and hang out with some friends. I think its also an good wake up call, trends come and go ask your self if the product is good enough to be timeless.

In case you were wondering Go Dodgers!

Monday, October 5, 2009

love disneyland... taken the other night!

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Thursday, October 1, 2009

So There are four P's in marketing.

Can you guess which one the PC world CMO forgot about?

Monday, September 21, 2009


I love what Adidas has done. They have a supper interactive website and they explain features and benefits really well. There are about 50 videos like this all in a really accessible format... Great Job on there part.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


Check out this AD for Pepsi... It's dated pre-new logo but I think it has merit. It tells a cute story that can really resonate with both adults and kids. There is ample opportunity for product extension, Pepsi Penguins anyone?

Most Importantly this is an AD that can easily be a series. Imagine extending it to the social realm, choose the Pepsi Penguin's next adventure! Higher involvement, higher awareness!
If coke made Santa red, Pespi could make Penguins Pepsi drinkers

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Not a controlled message (171 Starbucks in 1 day)

I've never been to New York but I know there are 171 starbucks to choose from in Manhattan alone!

I wonder what Starbucks did to the employee that charged 80 bucks for a pound cake?

Is it possible to find fans like this? This is begging to be an ad! It needs some edits but the story can be told in 10 seconds. Give up control let real people tell your story and communicate your message. It wont come across as forced or produced. Also this guy went to 171 stores in 1 day I'm pretty sure he picked up a gazillion insights.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Why Twitter? ... Finally Explained

I'm writing this post to help people. I understand both sides of the twitter and antitwitter groups. I myself went from the great mass of “I don’t get the twitter thing” to a “do you twitter?” stranger asking freak in less than 2 months. My wife still doesn’t get it and I understand why; Twitter seems stupid. Yes twitter fans the name is stupid and the idea is abstract… sorry.

*** When twitter users say words like twit, tweeter or tweet it sounds really dumb/dorky to the huge mass of people not on the network. ***

Non-users consider the following as a how to guide/ why its cool guide…

Step 1: Realize that Twitter isn’t Myspace or Facebook!
The big difference here is that Twitter is an open platform, unless you have a limited profile (I don’t suggest) you are an open book. Your thoughts musing web clippings are able to be seen by everyone, 140 characters at a time. You can see what anyone in the world is posting, and they can see you. If you are new to this I would suggest creating a list of your favorite athletes, politicians, movie stars, authors, innovators, companies etc. and following them. Following people that are interesting is like getting a backstage Pass … which brings me to step 2. . .

Step 2: Use Twitter as a backstage pass

Generally when we see our favorite big personalities we see them in a very controlled handled environment. Twitter gives a chance to see what they are thinking and feeling in real time! Twitter is also a great way to stay ahead of trends and find out about parties. I often use it to peer into the lives of people I would never get to hangout with. For me it’s like digital people watching. You want to know what Lauren Conrad’s days really look like, its on twitter. Want to know what Lance Armstrong is doing check out twitter. Want to follow the NHL Free Agency, use hash tags (Hash tag = # in front of a word) and stay up to the second.
( has a good list to start)

Step 3: Use twitter to get customer service

How many of us are sick of dealing with India, Bangalore or Antarctica on the phone. Hash tag a company name with a complaint or comment and you'll almost always get a response. Many companies have small teams tracking this stuff. If someone else is having the same problem you can use twitter as a network to find solutions… no bad hold music, and often in real time.

Step 5: Follow your friends
See what your friends are doing, even select some have SMS text’s sent to your phone. Its a cool way to send group messages. Also use it to have public conversations about topics, just something that needs to be attempted.

Step 6: When a story breaks you are really interested in
Follow what is going on by following hash tags… there are how to guides and 3 party applications for that.

Basically Twitter just takes a little getting used to, but once you figure it out… it becomes a very cool tool. Finally I would suggest using a gadget like tweet deck or the twitter gadget for iGoogle.

See side bar if you want to follow me after you set up your account.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

::Why Disney has it right::

Recently, I read Creating Magic, which is essentially about how Disney leads their people to function as an extension of their brand. Disney is an innovator in this area. They have created a culture where each of their cast members own a stake in the ideas, values, and company. Disney cast members are more likely to act in a way that is consistent with the company's overall vision and objective as a result.

How they created ownership

1. Brand with value
Clearly communicating that people matter (*employees are people) dramatically increases what employees are willing to do for a company. Employees that are valued are more likely to invest themselves into a brand message. Companies that treat people with disrespect end up with weak brands. Strong brands start with employees that are valued and respected.

2. Keep what matters in focus
The customer is often forgotten in minor policy adjustments even though many of these adjustments often affect the customer. I have seen small companies choose organizational convenience over customer service and do great harm as a result. Customer service is hard especially when workers get far removed from customer interaction. Listening to the customer and what front-line employees are communicating about customer needs gives a brand relevance.

3. Everything that is done matters
How many times have we really considered how important a Janitor is to our daily lives? How often do we think of the bus boy as a person that can make or break our day or business? Too often in our world the jobs that are low in pay are low in prestige. The sales force gets training while the shipping departments are trained only as much are necessary. Companies with a strong brand culture communicate value to every single position in addition to every person.

4. Training
The best way to communicate value to employees is to train and develop them as people. If a brand sets out to communicate excellence and value, then the brand must be willing to equip staff to fulfill this role. Too many businesses fear that they loose top talent because with adequate training, the employees might out grow their jobs. However, if training is done correctly, that type of shrinkage could actually be good news. Loosing top talent (managers etc.) actually opens up spaces for movement. A company with opportunity will actually result in creating a culture where you don’t loose top talent, you get more.

Much of this post is in response to Seth Godin's blog. Click the head below to check it out.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Does Pandora have it wrong? (i think so)

Pandora recently capped the amount of free usage they will allow a user to experience within a month (a measly 40 hours). As a customer using the service at work I find the new policy extremely frustrating. Although Pandora does offer the ability to buy more time ($.99 for the rest of the month), pay for a year ($36) or stop using the service until the next month begins. I feel like they are missing a serious opportunity while at the same time offending and alienating some of their best customers in the process.

Teaser time (even if it is sizable) is the way the offline economy works. If I wanted samples I would go to Costco. I'm on the web I want free. Even more perplexing is that I'm someone really interested in marketing. I often welcome the opportunity to be "intruded" on by advertisements in my day today life. Considering that Pandora keeps advertisements so unobtrusive they can be missed, why would I spend money to avoid them? Finally, why would I pay for premium service when I have a free broadcast radio (paid for by advertising) sitting on my desk?

Pandora should take advantage of their captive audience by running interruption ads 3 minutes for every hour the service is used. Not only would my exposure to the advertisers increase, but also my loyalty to the system would remain in tact. This would help Pandora in another way too. The premium service would actually create value for some consumers. Due to the current method most of my co-workers are going around the system (deleting cookies) or finding new solutions to their radio need (i.e. broadcast, CD's, and ipods).

I feel like Pandora came up with a panic solution. It looks good on its face, but they actually created a huge opportunity for a competitor to compete successfully. Myspace made similar missteps by ignoring Facebook.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Book Review :: Creating Magic

Creating Magic is a book I would suggest for everyone from High schooler's to Grandparents. The marketing idea behind the book is leading people in such a way that they become the brand. The book is written by the Disney executive who ran Walt Disney World for several years. It includes a lot of stories and anecdotes and it probably paints Disney in a slightly better light then it might deserve... However, that's actually a good thing. Cockerell sees Disney for what it can be which is how great leaders should see an organization. He also owns up to where they were and where they are so it can't be read as pie in the sky or idealism.

The book is really about how Disney has defined 10 key components they expect leaders to exhibit (They call them GLS- Great leadership Strategies). These are skills which develop people by affording them meaning and value in simple front line jobs. However, Cockerell's writing extends to so many other applications outside of the workplace, anyone can get something out of them.

This has probably been my favorite read of the summer, partially because I read it on my own accord. I think Disney has some of the best people in the world. Every cast member I have EVER come into contact with has been a professional and exceeded the level of service I anticipated (bare in mind I had annual passes to Disneyland for 3 years in a row).

This book is pragmatic, accessible, and in a summer of great reads something that stands out from the pack.

Warning: It is what you would expect from someone who believes in their product. I have no problem with this, I wish more people believed in what they did in the same way as Cockerell the world would be a better place.

Book Review:: What Sticks

I wouldn't suggest "What Sticks" as a valuable read for everyone. To be completely honest there are people that this book would do little or no good for. It also reads somewhat like a text book, so if that isnt your style it may not be a good fit. That said "What Sticks" is a great overview of Marketing, so much so I wonder how long before it becomes the standard for Marketing 101 or 102 courses.

A while back Seth Godin wrote on his blog about how little value there was in formal education for the Marketer. After reading this book I'd have to agree (sadly) particularly as someone who has completed almost all of my lower division undergrad work on the subject. "What Sticks" is a practical guide on the importance of data in the advertising field. "What Sticks" offers legitimate mesures to show ROI improvements or lack there of. It also gives insight into where advertising and maketing money is wasted. How and why brands are miscommunicated. "What Sticks" goes to the next level in explaining how to use data to resolve these issues. In the end, "What Sticks" is about communication. In reality, all marketing is about communication and better communication should always be the goal.

So who should read "What Sticks"?
Advertisers, Marketing Managers, Sales People, Coordinators, Leaders, and any one that needs to communicate to groups large enough where it is impossible to know the whole story.
In short, it was interesting, heady, challenging, and a very good book.
(As all suggestions by Robert have been)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Ads :: Our culture and messages head on

This blog is going to have a different feel than handy hour my focus here is going to be on the placement, design and scope. It's the other side of the coin. I'll focus on things like why the message was communicated effectively, where the ad was placed, and what there is to learn. Its the other side of the coin and its an opportunity to grow on that level for me.

::Up first::
"We all want to be hero's"

Monday, June 22, 2009


I was very impressed by what Gladwell did in Blink. His evenhanded approach paired with his willingness to tackle tough seemingly incongruent streams of data was encouraging and challenging. It was also refreshing that he didn’t present Blink in such a way that made the theory the answer to all things. Too often books have presented themselves in an over confident tone that is somewhat questionable in this genera, Gladwell avoids the pitfall well. For this book in particular it will take awhile for me to figure out what it means, but the issues presented are challenging and useful.

For me Priming was probably the most useful idea he covers. Its uses are staggering. One use I could see is for a team that is stumped. By using random word association games to offer fresh insight to break deadlocks. Priming allows a team to break away from box thinking and has the potential to reduce the effects of groupthink. Another advantage to priming is the ability for us to prepare ourselves for who we may need to be in a certain situation. Read adjectives, verbs and nouns and their definitions for the type of person you need to present. Often that person will show up, at least in some facet.

Over all I wouldn’t say blink is as revolutionary as some have made it out to be, but it is useful. If you need the meaning of life I'd probably suggest looking somewhere else. If you are looking for insight into the way the mind works check it out.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

I just finished reading Click by Bill Tancer. I haven't completely thought through what it means but I am starting to get some traction. Im going to break this blog down into a few different segments.

WEB 2.0
Im glad I finally understand what the heck web 2.0 means. I have heard it float around for awhile and it seemed like one of those really cool words with no meaning. Web 2.0 if I were to sum it up into one equation it would be.."The internet + user content+ social elements = Web 2.0". Web 2.0 includes sites like facebook, wikipedia, Yelp, and any other site where a community has the ability to control and comment on the content.

The major lesson though comes from the realization that not every site needs to have 2.0 features. It also was interesting to see how much information we offer about ourselves just from a clickstream.

Trends on searches.
One underpinning that I found interesting was how brand focused searches have become. Over and over again searches were often targeting brands not generic topics. We are more likely to search Rolex watches than we are for luxury watches. To me this points the fact that even though we may think we know where to go on the web someone is still helping us which means we are pointed by marketing.

People can smell a fake
This one isn't in the book as a point but I picked up on it. When searching for stuff many users are able to feel deception and shades of the truth. We are a skeptical bunch particularly when it comes to the internet. This is why more and more people are searching with some sense of "navigation". We do want to get to a there but we want to avoid going to the wrong there along the way. As a company advertising on the web it should be noted that a non-click isn't always a passive choice, it might actually be a choice against. My advice be aware of when you market and yield a low click rate. It could signal potential problems with your brand or description.

If you are interested in anything I just mentioned I would suggest the read.

Thursday, June 11, 2009


While I don't think it is important to master the art of coding... I think its important for anyone with any ambition in marketing to know at least basic html. 

Here is why::
Today on the fly I was asked to create an invitation to a presentation for companies in Chicago that we deliver to NASA. The e-mail was going to director level reciprients therefore it needed to not only look good but the wording needed to be polished. Ideally I would have presented this with HTML headers and footers including logos and branding... it would have added a polished touch. However, I didn't have the tools at my disposal and because I was short on time I just made do with what I could. (I nailed the wording down) 
Tonight the very first thing I did when I went home today was to touch up on these skills. Since the e-mail only went to one customer it is fixable and tomorrow I can actually fix it. It still got done, it just could have been better. 

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Searches are Questions

Ok ... As I am starting to journey on this whole click experiance I have learned that internet searches are really questions. 

Website operators are actually the ones with a wearhouse of answers, the key is to understand the questions that are being asked. I have seen so many meta-tags answer questions that no one is asking I dont know what to think.  At best, the websites are irrelevant and annoying. At worst, they drive clients away faster than a dead skunk in a dumpster. I may not remember what I was looking for but I remember when I have to sort through the crap I wasn't. After seeing a company enough I start to assume that they list everything and offer nothing, they seem a little shady. They hurt their brand.  

As a marketer, my goal is to first communicate well and second to communicate creatively. This applies to the internet too, TV ads that miss the message are a waste of money. Internet meta-tags that yeild results for things that the searchers arent looking for are also a waste of money. The key is to look at your data to determine what are you getting hits on and where good is traffic generated. Then try to encricle that spending marketing dollars selectively.

What drives this post?

I know a company that spends almost over $20,000 per month on search advertising that generates little traffic, and very small leads. Most of the traffic comming in is comming from direct searches, !!!they enter our company name in Google!!!  The logic simply isn't there. I still need to look over that stats and analytics but flyover reasearch has already indicated I wont be supprised. If I am you will see a blaring retraction. 

Hopefully I can communicate in a presentation, that is captivating and convincing, better ways to allocate their communication dollars.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Click #1

      I just picked up Click today and after reading the introduction I think I am in love. If you ask anyone in my office the 2 things that make me tick are data and understanding people. 

     I love data because connecting relationships allows me to identify, understand, and reduce redundancy.  I love finding out what makes people tick for some unexplainable reason. Maybe I have a deep ceded desire to communicate effectively. I find it maddening when people answer questions that no one is asking. Maybe its connected to the fact that I think people matter and the direction of society matters. Maybe I want just a glimpse of what its like to be able to see the whole picture. Maybe Im just a nerd. Regardless, I try to figure people out whether people is people or persons. 

 In Click, Bill Tancer is effectively pairing these 2 concepts insuring that the internet is a tool to find what is needed, not a crap shoot biased on chance. The internet without understanding these interrelationships would require either foreknowledge of what one wants and where one is headed or a desire to experience the random.  

Saturday, June 6, 2009

First Post

I'm making this blog because isn't the place I want to share the ideas about marketing and process that stuff. Also this blog might be a little less than interesting for the general reader. Finally, I didn't want to steal handy hour from my wife... from time to time there will be identical posts but as a rule this will be alot different.