Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Southern California Sonic Boom

Big one! 12:17 PM this afternoon. Anyone know what it is/was?

Friday, April 03, 2009

How Marketers Define "Convenience"


Marketers, always ones predisposed to put a positive spin on things, define "Convenience" a major attribute in packaged goods categories as, "time saving." Sounds good and irrefutable right? Well, at least we've all been conditioned to believe that this is true.
As SIEMENS defines convenience: Convenience enables the automation of the routine functions around the home to improve your comfort and enhance your lifestyle. Sounds like Siemens intends robots to take over every humanly function so that our brain cases become gelatinous gobs of goo. Insidious.

The truth is, "convenience" has conditioned us all to become "lazy" and poor "time managers." Why exercise those muscles when I don't have to. I have these "convenience" items to get me over the hump?

Everyone that's truly good at what they do has a mentor that makes them better. Donald Trump found a mentor when he wanted to air The Apprentice in founder/director of Reality Series Survivor - Mark Burnett. Tiger Woods found a mentor in his father. Each was a time manager.

Hey consumer, you can't do it alone, so don't rely on marketers. If you are a consumer find products that make you work your physical, emotional and mental muscles, that make you manage your time. Make your family your mentors. Take time, make time to bake those cookies from scratch. By forgetting how to use these muscles, the products that champion convenience made us weaker time managers, weaker organizers, weaker, weaker. And that's what's ruined the American economy today. Weak Americans bred by America's spin doctoring convenience marketers. Bad medicine.

We don't have time to relax. We don't have time to relax because we don't use our time wisely. It's relaxing to mix up a cake batter - from scratch. It's relaxing to make a meatloaf. Buying it premade in the refrigerated section of the grocery store only makes you rush on like you don't have time to the next thing. Get convenience, get relaxed, make it from scratch. Quality living and time management is the best convenience. And it's not so hard once you try.
Marketers, look out for the trend against "convenience" in the growing age of responsibility and accountability. Time, is the only commodity we can't get back - consumers want to spend it wisely, so make it a quality time experience. A good opportunity if you're someone like Gold Medal Flour.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

What's Wrong With Marketing

Perception. Self-Perception. Everyone has a way of convincing themselves they're number one in some way shape or form. But that's not true.

The managers managing brands think they're OK even if they're not number one. They think OK of themselves. They come to work today to do the same thing they did yesterday and what they will do tomorrow.

Avis tried harder for a long long time. Never made it past number two. And rifled through managements faster than you can shake a stick at. So, unable to come up with a better idea (lack of abstract problem-solving skills) the linear thinking problem solvers simply buzzed their We Try Harder into a famous campaign. Famous? Yes. Memorable? Yes. But that never translated into enough rental units moved to become #1. Memorability does not always equal more SUSTAINED sales. Neither does generating impressions, celebrity endorsements by Oprah or Tiger, etc.
Apple is not a brand name that slithers off the tongue. The Ps get in the way. But Avis is even more a brand name that slithers off your tongue. A man, and most travelers were men back in the heyday of car rental advertising ordered a Hertz...it almost sounded like a beer. Shemales rented an Avis. Now, the industry is so dominated by linear thinking cost cutting problem solving managements that it's a heavily price driven loyalty driven category that spends relatively little on advertising.
Well, when someone at one of these companies comes up with something important to say I guess they'll stop "branding" (It's what you do when you don't have anything important to say) and start "differentiating" themselves with a product-based reason-for-being communicated via traditional and electronic advertising.
Hell, General Motors wasted billions on shemalish advertising every year. All those people thought well of themselves and that they were doing the right thing everyday. Now look at 'em. Problem is/was, they design(ed) and build(t) products to rental car fleet standards. So what did that say about the people who bought their sedans on their own? Not much. I can hear what the neighbors are thinking. "Jesus! He/She bought a rental car." Bye bye GM.