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Category Archive for 'Hindsight and experience'

Last week I asked someone “what is marketing?” Said someone had just retired after an illustrious career in blue chip marketing departments and a blue chip marketing consultancy. I was expecting an immediate, well-rehearsed response. I was expecting a highly polished definition that was the result of decades of honing and refining. What I got […]

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“Don’t blow it all at once.” This is good advice, but there’s no point giving it. You watch your mother, their grandmother, give your child £20 for its birthday and you give the advice that you know won’t be heeded. Appreciating the benefit of delayed financial gratification has to be learned the hard way. “Don’t […]

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I blog therefore I am… …obliged to post a review of the year past. Well fuck that for a game of soldiers. Tweetdeck is amok with links to review and prediction posts already. They’ve even managed to displace the “7 ways to write a list-based blog post” brigade. And I think, like the January sales, […]

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I put together this presentation for an “Inspiring Minds” event by The Marketing Society. It’s a simple framework for thinking about “social media” strategy whilst avoiding the pitfalls that can arise from the very term “social media”. I always present with pictures rather than words so the embedded presentation below will only make so much […]

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This Lancashireman is struggling to compete with the extreme, and extremely competitive, privations described by the four Yorkshiremen. Working a twelve hour overnight shift in the (now defunct) Rathbone’s Bakery in Wigan may not be as bad as licking a motorway clean before breakfast, but it felt pretty close at the time. It was an […]

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Competitive agency X sent a bespoke new business mailer to Blonde client Y. The creative thrust of said mailer was that Agency X would give its right arm to work on Client Y’s business. And the mailer included a fake arm. Only it wasn’t a right arm. It was a left arm. Client Y invited […]

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Those responsible for various recent super injunctions might well be asking themselves this question. And I suspect that a “certain Premiership football player” will have no doubt whatsoever that there is such a thing as bad PR. There certainly appears to be such a thing as bad PR advice from lawyers. Social networks have made […]

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There’s a fine line between healthy cynicism and bonfire pissing. And it’s a fine line that the experienced creative industry practitioner has to tread carefully. Especially when she or he is dealing with the fresh-faced envangelism of a young, thrusting brand manager. Marketing can be a ridiculously up itself business sometimes. And a sense of […]

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I pay you for your opinion. So said a client of mine way back when. (Maybe it’s just me but I never fail to be pleasantly surprised when someone is explicit in placing value on my point of view.) In this instance it wasn’t any kind of strategic input that said client was seeking. It […]

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Norman Mailer told me to stop being a fucking pussy. I went to see him speak at the book festival and asked him a question at the end. What did he most regret doing, what did he most regret not doing, and which was the bigger regret of the two? I figured that if learning […]

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