No Tears for HR, Please–Part 2

My thanks to George Lenard for picking up on something I wrote earlier and continuing the exploration of the HR debate: The Spark (A marketer's view of Pop Culture. Insight. Connection. Solutions.) is abruptly negative: "No Tears for HR, Please." [I]n business, one tends to be judged on outcomes, and...

/ August 4, 2005

Building Iconic Brands

Did you know that Consistency can be deadly for a brand. Radical changes in the cultural landscape provide huge opportunities to develop iconic brands. Following trends can never build iconic brands. Paying attention to the majority of your customers can destroy a brand’s value Douglas Holt tackles all of these...

/ August 3, 2005

No Tears for HR, Please.

This month’s issue of Fast Company throws the spotlight on human resources.  Unfortunately, the title of the story is not misplaced: “Why We Hate HR”.  It would be an extremely short article if it were reduced to a simplistic answer.  The author Keith Hammonds offers multiple perspectives that explain HR’s...

/ August 2, 2005

ANA Study: Branded entertainment is overpriced. Duh!

About a week ago, the Association of National Advertisers (ANA) released the results of a survey that found that 79% of the companies surveyed felt that they were overpaying for branded entertainment. Want to know why?  Because the majority of them are in TV, which is notoriously expensive.  After TV,...

/ March 29, 2005

The “Matrix of Brain Power” or, Organize Around Your Key Consumer Segment(s)

In the March 21 issue of the New Yorker, Tad Friend wrote a fascinating profile of Dave Wirtschafter, the president of the William Morris Agency.  I have to admit that I’ve always been attracted to stories about the personalities in the entertainment business, so when the moment presented itself, I...

/ March 27, 2005

Dispatches from the 2005 PMA Annual Conference

I’ve just wrapped up 2-1/2 amazing days at the Promotion Marketing Association's 2005 Annual Conference, where attendees heard from top marketers on how to build brands in the 21st century. The days were heavy with insightful and thought-provoking presentations from the brand marketers most responsible for driving business results within...

/ March 7, 2005

2005 Marketing Industry Predictions

As I’ve said offline to many people, it’s an exciting time to be involved in marketing.  And it’s not just exciting for folks like myself who were never particularly wedded to the traditional advertising.  All around the industry, there seems to be a critical mass of brands and agencies that...

/ January 19, 2005

A Few Questions for Scott Donaton, or Can you tell me how to get to Madison & Vine?

As exciting as I think it is, branded entertainment is still very much the “wild west” of marketing. It’s chock full of various approaches, various levels of strategic thinking and lots of snake-oil salesmen who claim to have a cure for what’s ailing many a brand marketer and his or her...

/ November 29, 2004

Introducing. . .”Mobisodes”

Mobile phones are about to take a step beyond games and text messages thanks to Hollywood, that eternal font of content.  Late last week, USA Today ran a story that announced: In what appeared to be the first arrangement of its kind, Twentieth Century Fox said Wednesday it would create...

/ November 16, 2004

Tell me something I don’t know about Cell Phone Gamers

Mobile Entertainment Analyst recently highlighted a study that was published on its site entitled “A Profile of a Cell Phone Gamer, which was authored by Jill Braff, the VP of Marketing for game publisher Sorrent. Some key findings of the study: 1. While kids as young as nine play mobile...

/ September 16, 2004

Russell Simmons’ Missed Opportunity

Five days ago, Russell Simmons and his Hip-Hop Summit Action Network (HSAN) cancelled their much-ballyhooed March on New York, which was originally set for today, coinciding with the opening of the Republican National Convention. I’ve always said privately—but I’ll say it here now—that this “action” was always only sound and...

/ August 30, 2004

Average Americans are NOT the Average Voters

This recent item from the Center for Media Research: According to the New Strategist Publications, politicians are trying to portray themselves as being in touch with the average American. The truth is, they’re courting the average voter, whom the publication describes as: A white, married, 46-year-old woman, who owns a...

/ August 3, 2004