What We Can Glean From Karl Rove’s Real Bad Day

Now that we’re on the far side of the election, horribly misleading crapvertising like this has vanished from our public airwaves (although it is still plentiful online): Bloomberg reports that the maker of the ad above is under fire from conservative investors who spent more than $300 million on TV ads that failed to deliver […]

Say Something Interesting In A Memorable Way, Or Shut The Hell Up


It’s the best of times (and the worst of times) to be working in communications. Opportunities abound and empires are being built (and taken down) in a scant few years. On the other hand, despite revolutionary new communications platforms, there’s so much noise that hardly anything gets through and nothing is gained. Author and speaker, […]

The Google To Adlandia: Be Lean And Agile Like Us, And You’ll Be Rich Like Us


Earlier this summer, a technology company executive suggested I look into “lean and agile development.” Seeing a parallel between our work environments, he thought it might help me improve the way I make work. I’ve been intrigued by the idea ever since, but I probably need to read a book about it to get a […]

Selling Big Ideas Is Really Just A Head Massage

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Want to win a Gold Lion? Make your clients comfortable. In advertising, many great ideas never see the light of day. It’s a massive waste of time and energy, but it may also be an unnecessary loss according to a new study by researchers from Cornell, Penn and the University of North Carolina. David Burkus, […]

Too Many Opinions? Let Me Tell You What I Think About That.


Separating fact from opinion ain’t what it used to be. There was a time when the more you read, the more engaged you were with your world. Your city. Your neighborhood. Not some imaginary world you wished could be, but the world as it actually existed outside your door. Back in these ancient times (otherwise […]

Get TV Right And The Brand Can Go Long And Far

Nigel Hollis, chief global analyst at Millward Brown, writing in The Atlantic, argues that people are moved by the power of advertising, regardless of claims to the contrary. Successful advertising rarely succeeds through argument or calls to action. Instead, it creates positive memories and feelings that influence our behavior over time to encourage us to […]

The Smart Swarm Teaches Us About Nature’s Crowdsourcers

These days, it’s hard to avoid talk of “the wisdom of the crowds” or how to engage mass amounts of people with marketing. So can we predict the behavior of humans by studying nature? Peter Miller says yes in The Smart Swarm: How Understanding Flocks, Schools, and Colonies Can Make Us Better at Communicating, Decision […]

Left Brained Clients Getting You Down? Spring Some Behavioural Economics On Their Sorry Behinds.

Rory Sutherland, vice-chairman of Ogilvy Group UK, writing in Campaign, makes an argument for behavioural economics – a decades-old, yet newly fashionable, field of study. Why is marketing – and, more importantly, the vital study of human behaviour – so little celebrated in the wider world of business? And why have marketers and agencies not […]

Can Brands Be Here Now? They Need To Be.

On her site Conversation Agent, Valeria Maltoni says our brains love novelty. That we are built to notice all that is different and new, a fact which keeps us moving on to higher, better ground – whatever that may be. She then righty asserts that it’s hard to retain readers’ attention, customers’ spending habits and […]