Tuesday, September 2

The "Master of Voiceover" has died

It is with a great deal of sadness that I report the death of a legend, Don LaFontaine. Don was the voice behind over 5,000 movie trailers and over 350,000 commercials and other projects. He was probably introduced to the masses only as the voice over guy that Geico hired in one of their pro-am duo commercials. Don LaFontaine had become the one which everyone else used as the standard in his industry. It was once said that the deep voice greeting you when you arrive in heaven is not God's voice, but God doing Don LaFontaine's voice. May he rest in peace.

Tuesday, August 19

The Customer Language

I have written about the comparisons between marketing and the evangelistic efforts of missionaries. You would not expect a missionary to land on the shores of a native group and begin speaking the missionaries language, explaining in exhausting detail the greatest aspects of their beliefs. To be successful, there is a process that is followed. The missionary spends time with the native group, learning their language, their culture, and their beliefs. What may be more important, however, is that the relationship is also growing the other direction as well. It is not until this trust is gained, the relationship groomed, and a conversion can take place that the missionary can be effective in spreading its message. The growth of the message grows exponentially when the recipient of the message becomes the messenger.
Today, we can see countless examples of clear violations of the process. Businesses (the missionaries) begin the relationship with us (the native group) without ever trying to learn from our wants, needs, concern or culture. It would be similar to a blind date asking for marriage on the first date.
Talk to me. Find out about me, my beliefs, my values. Learn my language. Then convert me.

Tuesday, August 12

Marketing is Simple

Marketing is not that difficult. Not that I want to give away all the trade secrets, but it truly is not a difficult craft. It is much like having a magic trick explained to you. When you finally see how the illusion was carried out you have a moment much like, "Oh, that was easy." Marketing is like that, but with an added aspect. Intrinsically, most people know the basics of marketing. So, when you see a (dare I say) marketing trick explained to you, there is the "aha" moment, but there is also the "why didn't I think of that?" moment. That is because most people (I must say 'most people' because there are always some who simply don't get it) have basic marketing instincts. If we did not have those instincts, then marketing would not work on us. So, like a dream that is difficult to remember, we hear of a marketing success and have full recall of our dream, but prior to that moment the dream was sketchy or blurred - the marketing idea was not yet clear.
My challenge as a marketing and business consultant is to help people wake up from the haze and fully understand the marketing ideas that lay within us all. That part is progressive, sometimes a struggle, but always rewarding.

Tuesday, June 17

Marketing has always been a passion of mine. After all, you have to be passionate about something. One person was passionate about Pez dispensers and started an online auction site. Granted not all passions about plastic candy holders turn into the giant we all know as EBay, it is still important to focus on your passion. I admit that I definitely do not have the market cornered on being passionate about marketing. Many people may be passionate without realizing it.

Here is a simple test. See if you recognize these famous advertising slogans. (if you give up, email me).

  1. He keeps going and going and going
  2. We bring good things to life
  3. Can you hear me now?
  4. What's in your wallet?
  5. So easy a caveman can do it
  6. Are you in good hands?
  7. Do More, Feel Better, Live Longer
  8. A diamond is forever
  9. It takes a licking and keeps on ticking
  10. Just do it
  11. Maybe she's born with it. Maybe it's ...
  12. M'm! M'm! Good!
  13. You're free to move about the country
  14. Good to the last Drop
  15. The pause that refreshes

Ok. How did you do? A big hoorah for the person that got 15 out of 15. But this proves my point we all can claim some passion for marketing. For instance, the day after the superbowl the office chatter seems to last twice as long about the commercials than the actual game (any year there is not a wardrobe malfunction at least).

Marketing is all around us and it has woven into our lives. Special moments, and memories revolving around marketing slogans or products can easily come to most peoples mind. SO, for the days to come, I hope you join me as we discuss this art, the art of marketing.