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The MadAve Blog (313)

Randy Snow spoke at the Advertising Club of Toledo's monthly luncheon program Wednesday. He's the Creative Director at R&R Partners, the agency responsible for the wildy successful "What happens here, stays here" campaign for the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.

While Snow admitted he isn't the guy who came up with that evocative and very effective slogan, he is the only creative to be on the campaign since the beginning. You've probably seen a lot of the great TV they've done, but Snow also showed off some of their Vegas print work. Here's my favorite.

 

Tuesday, 12 September 2006 08:48

The "Write" Time

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Is writing part of your job? For more and more people today, the answer is "yes." Of course, many of these people dread the thought of finding the time to write. They battle with the demons that lurk on a blank page, saying to themselves "I can't do this!" and imagine spending hours in front of a keyboard just to come up with a few good paragraphs.

But maybe there's a better way. Writing coach Daphne Gray-Grant suggests:

"Just as the cactus thrives in a hot, dry environment, writing thrives in the absence of time. Writing not only can be done quickly; it is better done quickly. That's partly because, if you're fast enough, you can usually out-run and out-write the negative chatter in your head"

Grant suggests writing in 10-minute blocks of time. That might be too little time for some people, but the idea has merit. Next time, try writing in multiple short sessions and see if it doesn't help you be more productive.

Thursday, 07 September 2006 21:59

Hepburn Is Back In Black

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The GAP has another great TV spot on the air, this time for their "skinny black pant."

Using a scene from the film "Funny Face," they isolate star Audrey Hepburn and set her a-hoofin' to AC/DC's "Back In Black." The spot is innovative, hip and funny, and does a great job of aligning cultural icons Hepburn and AC/DC with the GAP brand.

Most importantly, the creative is so enjoyable it keeps me watching until the GAP logo flashes on screen...and looking forward to seeing the spot again!

Wednesday, 06 September 2006 13:28

Office Time Killer #38

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Today, we weighed our heads.

Beginning at 3:15pm, thirteen of our staffers laid belly-up on the floor and placed their noggins on a bathroom scale. (Several employees chose not to participate either because it was not required for insurance purposes or their skirts were too short.)

We learned that there are several keys to determining accurate head weight:

1) No part of the neck or shoulders can touch the scale.

2) The weighee must relax completely, allowing the full weight of the head to rest on the scale.

3) The head must not be chewing gum.

We also learned that...

1) A heavier head is not an indicator of a higher degree of intelligence.

2) It's easier to kick people when they're flat on their backs...and far more satisfying.

Here is the head weight breakdown:

  • Total head weight of the 13 participants = 109 pounds
  • Average head weight of all participants = 8.38 pounds
  • Average head weight by department:

     Sales = 7.75 pounds
     Creative = 8.81 pounds
     Production = 8.43 pounds
     Accounting & IT = 8.00 pounds

Next week, we'll measure intestinal length. I offer no predictions, but I will bet that once it's all said and done, our tape measure won't smell too good.

Thursday, 24 August 2006 13:40

Marketing Pluto

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Maybe if Plutonians hadn't slashed their Point-Of-Entry Marketing budget years ago they'd still be living on a legitimate planet today.

Instead, their tiny ice sphere has just been downgraded to "space pebble" status.

It's not easy to promote your benefits and maintain top-of-mind awareness within the planetary community when you're floating on the outer edges of the solar marketplace. The Plutonians knew this, but they dropped their On Hold Messaging program anyway.

Big mistake for such a little place.

(BusinessVoice is proud to be the official On Hold Messaging provider to planet Earth.)

 

Wednesday, 09 August 2006 03:34

Marketing With Precision

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In the town where I live, the local newspaper distributes packets of advertisements free of charge each week to households that are not subscribers. These ad packets come in a distinctive pale blue bag and in some neighborhoods you’ll see them piling up under bushes, on porches and in driveways where homeowners obviously have no interest in them.

Here’s the punchline; the packets are emblazoned with the logo “Precision Marketing.”

Irony aside, how do you “market with precision” when your message is going out, not in blue bags, but in the what you tell every person who calls, visits your website or stops into your business?

You can be more precise in your marketing by developing a unique selling proposition (USP). The USP clearly answers the question, "Why should I do business with you instead of your competitors?"

Some of the most famous USPs are considered mere slogans, but typically it’s more than just a catchy phrase. When Domino's Pizza promised fresh, hot pizza delivered to your door in 30 minutes or less, or FedEx was ready to deliver when your package absolutely, positively has to get there overnight, those were unique selling propositions. Perhaps the first USP was for M&M's - the milk chocolate that melts in your mouth, not in your hand.

What do you provide that sets you apart from the others in your field? That’s precisely what you should be marketing. If you can’t answer that question, it might be time to look for some way to stand out from the rest of your business peers in the products or services you offer. Otherwise, your message runs the risk of being ignored like all those unopened blue bags that promise “precision marketing” but don’t deliver.

Monday, 07 August 2006 15:50

What's The Hurry?

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Have you ever received a voicemail message that you had to replay over and over and over again in order to decrypt the a name or phone number that went flying past you at warp speed?

Keep that painful experience in mind the next time you leave a message and use the "pause" button in your voice.

You...don't...have...to...talk...like...this...but take a quick beat between your first name and last name and use the hyphens that are part of every telephone number to add some short pauses. Make it "419...473... 9000...extension 333," instead of "fouroneninefourseventhreeninethousandextensionthreethirtythree."

I know you might repeat your name and telephone number dozens of times a day in messages, but the person you are calling only wants to hear it once - and clearly too. When it comes to leaving messages, the race to receive a callback isn't necessarily won by the swift.

Monday, 24 July 2006 05:41

Dr. ZZZZZZZZ

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Chrysler's Dr. Z campaign puts me to sleep, which is hardly the ideal car-buying state.

These spots are everywhere and, yet, they are so remarkably underwhelming. The copy isn't clever, funny or memorable. And, while I'm sure Dr. Z. is a nice guy, he comes across as interesting as wet cardboard on screen. He should be replaced by a talking U-joint that wears a funny hat, or maybe Billy the Chrysler Monkey.

Monday, 17 July 2006 09:31

What, The Shell?

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CBS-EggI read in this morning's AAF SmartBrief that the CBS television network will "stamp 35 million eggs with laser images of its logo" and egg-related puns about its programming.

I'm torn. As a marketer I applaud CBS's ingenuity. But as a guy who enjoys eating omelets in the privacy of his own home at his advertising-free kitchen table, I'm a little creeped out.

How far is too far? How deep into our personal lives should marketers venture? Do we really need to be reminded to catch the season finale of "Two And A Half Men" as we crack open our quiche eggs?

Which begs another question: do "Two And A Half Men" even eat quiche?

Tuesday, 11 July 2006 13:56

Oh, Thank Heaven!

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Today is 7/11. In celebration, I took our entire Creative department out for a Big Gulp and a carton of Marlboros.

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