September 30, 2005

Just google it

A new article from Xtreme Information poses the question whether the almighty Google are merely the public servants on the information highway or the result of innovative marketing spin. I think they are both – but most of all I think they are the masters of product innovation.

Their word-of mouth and consumer led approach to marketing is without a doubt the most impressive marketing (and business) case in years. I’m looking for more functionality like this:

September 28, 2005

What woman wants?

The recent female targeted campaigns from Dove and Nike have - with their quest for expanding the beauty ideal - proven successful in both media coverage and supposedly in ROI.

Now there is a whole book out by Martha Barletta Martha with key female marketing strategies (there is seven of them where the first one is equivalent to the Dove/Nike one)…thanks to The Hidden Persuader.

Better real than ideal:
"Female gender culture is all about finding something in common with others to build bonds, not aspiring to an ideal to set oneself apart."

Beware of talking about women's unique needs:
"The problem with this approach is that women don't want to feel different. They want to feel taken seriously. The risk with the women's unique needs approach is that, unless it is subtle and respectful, women feel stalked, not wooed."

User focus trumps product focus:
"For example, with cars, computers and consumer electronics (all categories where women make the majority of the purchases, incidentally), while a man may be mesmerized by the specs of high-tech widgets and gadgets, a woman is captivated by the person using the product."

Others matter:
"Not only that, but helping someone else, which isn't mission-critical for most men, is second nature for women."

Make the world a better place:
"She thinks you should be helping others as well. Numerous studies show women are more motivated than men by the goal of giving back"

Immersion instead of Topline:
"Whereas men 'see' more clearly when key information is extracted and ?extraneous details? discarded, women better absorb information when it's presented in context."

Show some emotion:
"Emotion-based advertising has a powerful pull for women -- people are always involved."


Seth Godin and couple of other marketing and business high-flyers have compiled what they call the PersonalMBA . The concept is simple – you don’t need to take out the time, effort and money the conventional MBA requires. Instead with a well selected list of books and publications you’ll find the knowledge you need. In communication strategy and strategic planning an equivalent would sure have to contain a few classics but also a lot of blogs should be on the selected list.

Work environment

The ever ongoing discussion whether there is a correlation between inspiring environments and the level of creative thinking is right now rallying at Ernie Schencks blog .

I personally don’t think an interesting agency décor can make up for lack of talent. On the other hand I think the mixture of untraditional offices and gifted people can sometimes get the thinking to places you wouldn’t have been elsewhere.

The other day we had a couple of ducks outside the agency door and we are only 5 minutes away from the centre of Copenhagen. That actually gave a little bit of unexpected inspiration to something we where trying to solve in a whole other ball game. Maybe we should set more briefing sessions in the zoo.

L. Ron Hubbard goes creative

The Father of Scientology's book on Dianetics is here shown in the most creative way on a city wall in Copenhagen. I think the “spokesperson version” with Tom Cruise or John Travolta would have been better.

September 08, 2005

Human insight cliché alarm

Clichés can be useful when you use them properly. Clichés can travel across borders. Clichés can be funny if they are cleverly turned upside down. But I find that the most clever insights and ideas are found out of the boundaries of clichés. There was an article today on BBC online where the writer John Camm has written down some of the clichés he hates in advertising. Funny reading but also a bit depressing since so much communication are actually based around these themes. See for yourself.

1. Men are obsessed with sex but will forego sex in order to watch football or drink beer.
2. Women are locked in a constant battle with their weight/body shape/hairstyle.
3. Career success is entirely based on your ability to impress your boss.
4. Mums are often harassed but NEVER depressed/unable to cope.
5. Any act of male stupidity (e.g. walking across a clean floor in muddy boots, putting the dog in the dishwasher, etc.) will be met with a wry smile, not genuine annoyance/anger.
6. Married men will flirt with other, younger women but NEVER act upon it.
7. Anyone with a scientific career will have a bad haircut and dreadful clothes.
8. If you work for the emergency services, you are a better person than the general population.
9. Elderly relatives NEVER suffer from senile dementia.
10. Scandinavians are, without exception, blonde and beautiful.
11. Women have jobs they never do in real life, e.g. dockworker (who looks like a model).
12. Children will not eat fruit or vegetables. Ever.
13. Both men and women find driving deeply pleasurable, never boring or stressful.
14. Men are inherently lazy/slobbish; women are the reverse.
15. Chocolate, however, will cause women to immediately fall into the languor of the opium eater.
16. High Street bank staff are (A) friends of the customers, and (B) of slightly above-average attractiveness (only if female).
17. Modern men own a cat.
18. Hot beverages have miraculous rejuvenating effects.
19. Professional people have strangely trivial preoccupations, e.g. a female barrister who is morbidly obsessed with finding a healthy snack bar.
20. All women (except stay-at-home housewives) have interesting and enjoyable careers.
21. Any over-the-counter medical product will work instantly and 100% effectively.
22. Children know more than adults.
23. Women never merely hop in and out of the shower, instead preferring to act out some sort of soapy Dance of the Seven Veils.
24. School is a happy experience for all children.
25. Tortilla chips are the most exciting experience any group of young people can experience.
26. Playing bingo is THE number one pastime among 18-25 year old British women.