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September 15, 2008
NYU professor Douglas Rushkoff, a correspondent for Frontline, embarks upon a 90-minute expose on the ad industry, and its continual struggle to fight through the clutter with more clutter. Loaded with interviews of industry veterans, including a look at the psychology behind consumer decisions, this show is both powerful and frightening.
Not surprising, much of the conversation about persuasion comes back to personal identity and meaning. How we feel and how we define who we are—especially through our purchases—is the foundation for a persuader's playbook.
If you haven't seen The Persuaders, I encourage you to check it out. You can view it online, order it from PBS, or add it to your Netflix queue. You can also read the synopsis online.
October 2, 2006
Non-profits can score some free advertising, thanks to Google's commitment to not be evil. Google Grants is a program where non-profits can get three months or more of free text advertising on Google. You need to be a 501(c)(3) non-profit organizations and religious and political groups need not apply. It helps if your organization fits with one of Google's ideal causes: science and technology, education, global public health, the environment, youth advocacy and the arts.
November 22, 2005
Ron Berger, co-chairman for the second annual Advertising Week in New York last month recalls his proudest moment from the week of materialistic Madison-Avenue matrimony. According to Ad Week, apparently 13 ad agencies "adopted" some 100 New York City high school students to "familiarize them with the industry as a means to draw future talent." While I am sympathetic toward any student being "familiarized" with the industry, I am certainly encouraged by the statement that this was a proud moment. This shows two things: 1) the industry is in need of talent and wants to make sure its future is secure, and 2) people and companies want to be a part of something that makes a difference and means something.
At Personality™, we work every day on causes we believe in, especially when it means adding value to the lives of others. What's your cause?
November 10, 2005
It's a bird. It's a plane. It's a billboard with live people! Joan Voight in her article in the September 26 issue of Ad Week had a great write-up on the increasing popularity of live advertising. From Target's vertical fashion runway to Calvin Klein's three story high bottle of cologne with a built-in dance party, outdoor advertising is more than just boring billboards for Betty's bail bonds. The potential exposure is quite large, especially considering the media coverage that often follows.
What would marketing your cause look like if it came to life?
August 24, 2005
Magazine advertising is going high tech as advertisers and publishers are trying to find new ways to get attention. Gimmicks include sounds, lights and scents, just about anything to get people to take notice. The extra touches do come at a hefty price though as the extra inserts can slow printing and have to be thoroughly tested.
August 18, 2005
When Lance Armstrong appeared on The Late Show with David Letterman they of course talked about his unprecedented seventh Tour de France victory. But then Letterman held up a copy of Sports Illustrated and breezed past the Armstrong cover to the Nike ad on the back page. It featured a 1996 picture of Armstrong when he was in the midst of his battle with cancer. Letterman hailed it as the real deal. Personality doesn't always have to be bright and bubbly—sometimes it just has to be authentic.
July 26, 2005
A sweeping, fast-paced, non-conclusive or exhaustive history of advertising in America...
As the century was turning over from the 1800s to the 1900s, industrial capitalists were playing a significant role in pioneering America's explosive economic growth. From oil tycoons to bankers, from automakers to clothiers, America was roaring. It's emergence not only as a nation but also as a viable player in the world fed its optimism and aggrandizement of what could be if only we put our minds to it.
June 10, 2005
While driving on the freeways this last week I noticed numerous trucks, cars and SUVs with self-advertising magnetically attached to their back-end and sides. A large majority of the vehicles had text that was not legible by any passing car, even in stop-and-go traffic.
Note to any company doing magnetic signage: Maybe use your company name and logo, key words of what your company does and a phone number. Grab the driver's attention, but be careful with being too wordy—you may be the cause of an accident.
June 8, 2005
That's their pitch? It makes sense? Every product or idea or service makes sense to the person advertising it. How about giving people a glimpse of why it makes sense? Some of the reasons they eventually give if you click on the ad do make sense (simpler, easier, environmentally friendly, cheaper), but few people will ever get that far.
Saying it just makes sense assumes the people you're advertising to already agree with you, and if they do, why are you advertising in the first place?
May 27, 2005
I have the life of most Southern California people, the life of commuting. I had been taking the train for a while but the last few months I've been driving and umm... It's no fun. Traffic really is a nightmare here in the "Southland" I have to take the 5 freeway to and from work everyday and my commute just got a little more difficult thanks to some good marketing.
There is an outlet mall called the Citadel that sits just off of the 5 freeway south of downtown. Some genius decided to put up very large LCD screens to act as moving billboards. The screens are huge and feature ads and images for the shops located inside the Citadel walls. And boy, does traffic slow down. We're talking the kinda of slow driving where you can see the smashed gum on the street.
I honestly never knew what was in the Citadel until they put those signs up, now I do and chances are I may just stop one day and go shopping instead of sitting in traffic.
May 25, 2005
May 23, 2005
Have you ever watched a commercial on television and thought, "I'm sold"? I watched a grotesque commercial for Clorox the other day. Basically, this guy is holding up a sealed plastic bag with 50 grams of "body soil". The selling point is, "detergent alone doesn't cut it".
Guess what I used this weekend when doing laundry? Yes, Clorox bleach. Just the thought of that yellow liquid sitting in my clothes, sheets and towels was enough to make me want to go overload on the bleach. I was a definite target audience for this one!
August 9, 2004
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Listing and advertising in the local telephone directory isn't a new and fancy way to showcase your marketing savvy. It's a simple way to cover the basics better than your competition. Small- and medium-sized businesses spend 46 percent of their advertising budget on phone directory marketing (Ad Age), which means it's not a medium you can ignore.