Cluetrainers Need To Get A Clue

One of the blogerati’s heavyweights weighed in today on how amazing the Cluetrain Manifesto is, and how clueless VW is for not understanding its inner most workings.
“If I were you, VW, I would hold a contest to get people to create the best damned VW commercial anywhere and promise to spend big bucks to air it on, say, the Oscars. You don’t have to pick the terrorist commercial. You’ll be making clear that the thing was not made by you. At the same time, you will learn a lot about new messages that truly resonate and reverberate from your customers — because your customers are creating them. How’s that for market research?
This is the Cluetrain economy, guys: Markets are conversations. Join in the conversation, don’t try to muzzle it.” –Jeff Jarvis
Again, I’m baffled. I find myself–a Cluetrain fan–being turned off by such Jarvis-like jargon. VW does not need its customers to make its advertising. Arnold Worldwide is doing quite well on that front, having delivered some of the most memorable ad campaigns for the German car maker for several years running.
Should we involve the customers in the making of the marketing? Sure.
Should we accept whatever crap comes along and say it’s great because we didn’t make it? Please! This is lunacy, and now I’m ranting.

About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am now head of brand strategy and creative direction at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.