Seriously Overwritten Copy

We are exposed to thousands of marketing messages and it is very hard for something to stand out. Podcast sponsorships are one way to make an impact because the listener is possibly more focused on hearing the words in their ears. They are not usually listening to something else, which is the case when someone is reading or watching something. I heard a sponsor ad for a car and one of the features listed was “an aggressively hatched grill.” That caught my attention and stood out for being ridiculous. Who pays attention to the design of the grill of the car? And more specifically, what kind of person would be looking for an aggressive grill? Do they need to appear menacing in someone’s rear view mirror?

Sometimes I Like to Be Literal

My girlfriend likes flowers. More specifically, she likes bringing me flowers. Maybe I should re-read those two sentences and bring her flowers sometimes, but that’s a different post. Anyway, I do not have a vase to put these flowers in. I usually use a water bottle. I have loads of bottles from trade shows, imprinted with the names of forgotten tech companies. They make good vases. We were at the store and she asked me if I wanted to look at vases. She’s smart and I usually listen to her. Rather than choose a standard glass vase I got a white ceramic pitcher with the word “Water” stamped on the side. Now when someone says can you put these in water, I can.

A Propeller in the Woods

I looked out the window and saw what looked like a spinning propeller in the woods. It seemed like a mechanical object floating, or even embedded, in nature. After staring at it a moment longer I realized that it was a perfect spider web catching the sun through the trees. I looked away and when I looked back it was gone. The sun had moved and the path of the beam no longer shone on the web.

The Smell of Hot Buttered Popcorn

Strong smells, especially positive ones, are strongly tied to emotions and memories. Think of the following smells: hot buttered popcorn, chocolate chip cookies, freshly baked bread, sautéed garlic. Even just the thought of them brings up emotions and memories. Imagine how much stronger those would be if you actually smelled them. What if you had to deliver your marketing messages solely through your customers’ sense of smell? How emotional do you think the response would be?

Shouting Through a Time Machine

Our agency team gave a presentation about marketing information that has been around for a long time, but the clients just didn’t know the ins and outs about it. As marketers, we’ve been living and breathing this information forever, so it was a challenge to think about how to present it as if it were new information. I described it as shouting through a time machine.

Smile. Or at Least Open Your Mouth When You Speak

I have always wondered why people who are not socially engaged, or otherwise pleasant in public, work in customer service jobs. Serving people may not always be fun, but if you are the checkout person, you are the last person I see before I leave the store. Ok, so you don’t have to happy and light-hearted about everything, but at least talk so I can understand you. I’m curious about both sides of this equation. Are stores this strapped for employees that they really hire anyone with a pulse to run a register? And if you don’t like talking to people, why subject yourself to this environment?

Facebook is Like 3 Hamburgers

According to Icelandic singer Bjork:

Maybe there are a lot of kids now who don’t know how to walk in a forest and do basic outdoorsy things. You can be on Facebook for a long time, and then you get a feeling in your body like you’ve had three hamburgers. You know it’s trash. I always advise my friends: just go for a walk for an hour and come back and see how you feel then. I think we’re meant to be outdoors.

The Poetry of Translation

Our Georgian guide used English words in expressions that were much more poetic than similar phrases in English. For example, instead of describing the sound of the river, he said how nice it was to hear the voice of the river. If you needed to relieve yourself in the woods, he called that using nature. He also described many Georgian drivers as driving like they had potatoes in the car instead of people. It didn’t matter how much they bounced around.

The Negative Space of Numbers

I wear a Timex digital watch when I travel instead of my Apple Watch. This is a simple digital watch where the numbers are made from segments of a bisected square. As I was traveling through the Caucasus Mountains this was the only way I knew what time it was. I really only needed to know that time for breakfast and dinner in our guest house, but I like to know what time it is. Even in the middle of the night. On one particular night I was unable to read my watch. I couldn’t see the numbers. I could only see the negative space between them.