Great marketing is honest. Not fair.

by ian

Lisa Barone’s post today about a tax on business bloggers, and the squawking and flapping that ensued thereafter, got me thinking about ‘fair’ versus ‘honest’. Especially in the world of marketing.
In marketing, ‘fair’ doesn’t exist

I find that when folks start talking about ‘fair’, what they mean is ‘fair for me and mine.’ Or maybe ‘easy’.

‘Fair’ is relative: I’m a cyclist. I drive a Toyota Prius. So raising gas prices to $5/gallon and doubling the size of bicycle lanes seems perfectly fair to me. You, on the other hand, are getting ready to let loose a tirade of car-loving American outrage in the comments section.

I’ve had potential clients tell me I was ‘unfair’ because my prices were too high for them. While I sympathize (I’d love to buy a Fisker Karma, but it’s out of my price range), it has nothing to do with ‘fair’. It’s about the value I deliver, and whether it’s worth it to you.

God, I’m starting to sound like a Republican. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Some of my best friends are Republicans…

Anyway, in marketing, don’t look for fair. Marketing is not about fair. It’s about crushing every other competitor in the room in horrifying, brutal fashion, while you all smile at each other.

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Lisa Barone‘s post today about a tax on business bloggers, and the squawking and flapping that ensued thereafter, got me thinking about ‘fair’ versus ‘honest’. Especially in the world of marketing.

In marketing, ‘fair’ doesn’t exist

I find that when folks start talking about ‘fair’, what they mean is ‘fair for me and mine.’ Or maybe ‘easy’.

‘Fair’ is relative: I’m a cyclist. I drive a Toyota Prius. So raising gas prices to $5/gallon and doubling the size of bicycle lanes seems perfectly fair to me. You, on the other hand, are getting ready to let loose a tirade of car-loving American outrage in the comments section.

I’ve had potential clients tell me I was ‘unfair’ because my prices were too high for them. While I sympathize (I’d love to buy a Fisker Karma, but it’s out of my price range), it has nothing to do with ‘fair’. It’s about the value I deliver, and whether it’s worth it to you.

God, I’m starting to sound like a Republican. Not that there’s anything wrong with that. Some of my best friends are Republicans…

Anyway, in marketing, don’t look for fair. Marketing is not about fair. It’s about crushing every other competitor in the room in horrifying, brutal fashion, while you all smile at each other. Leer más “Great marketing is honest. Not fair.”

Work/Life Balance and Labor Day

Labor Day in the U.S. is almost here. Many other countries also celebrate a labor day, which has always seemed an unusual event to me. We didn’t celebrate such a day at all until Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City. Interestingly, this is a date that coincides well with the world’s entry into the impersonal and mechanistic 20th century.

I have been noodling for quite some time over the work/life balance movement. I call it a movement because it really came about unexpectedly around 15 years or so ago and has swept corporate America from coast to coast.

I can’t think of any organization that has not had to change policies or at least address its employees about the issue. The work/life balance movement is an interesting phenomenon. I don’t think there has been a previous era when there was such an emphasis on specifically setting aside time for non-work activities.

It is a logical outcome of decades of isolating work from other aspects of life. The idea of creating a balance is based on a set of assumptions that aren’t questioned, yet are very strange from the perspective of a Baby Boomer such as myself or from that of anyone who has studied the history of work.

This is rapidly changing and the work/life movement will wither away over the next few years as people begin to find ways to develop their passion and dreams into paid work that they can do at home or near home when and as much as they want.

Young folks, the Gen Y or Millenniums, are rejecting the work/life notions, much to the chagrin of their elder Gen X colleagues. Gen Y tends to look for work they are passionate about and then they tend to work in ways foreign to Gen X. They take any sense of balance away and may work for days without a stop or not work much at all for some time. They try to choose meaningful and interesting work and embrace it with a passion only seen once in a while with Gen X or Baby Boomers.


Labor Day in the U.S. is almost here. Many other countries also celebrate a labor day, which has always seemed an unusual event to me. We didn’t celebrate such a day at all until Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City. Interestingly, this is a date that coincides well with the world’s entry into the impersonal and mechanistic 20th century.

I have been noodling for quite some time over the work/life balance movement. I call it a movement because it really came about unexpectedly around 15 years or so ago and has swept corporate America from coast to coast.

I can’t think of any organization that has not had to change policies or at least address its employees about the issue. The work/life balance movement is an interesting phenomenon. I don’t think there has been a previous era when there was such an emphasis on specifically setting aside time for non-work activities.

It is a logical outcome of decades of isolating work from other aspects of life. The idea of creating a balance is based on a set of assumptions that aren’t questioned, yet are very strange from the perspective of a Baby Boomer such as myself or from that of anyone who has studied the history of work. Leer más “Work/Life Balance and Labor Day”

Wikileaks no es bueno ni malo… simplemente es

Acabo de terminar una entrevista telefónica con una radio española para hablar de Wikileaks, al hilo de la anunciada publicación de la segunda entrega de los documentos sobre la guerra sucia en Afghanistán, y el discurrir del tema sigue, como comentábamos en una entrada anterior, evocando poderosamente lecciones que ya aprendimos en su momento – todos no, solo algunos – en situaciones similares en Internet: ¿se puede “luchar” contra Wikileaks? No, en la medida en que esa lucha no es contra un individuo ni contra una empresa, sino contra la naturleza misma de Internet. ¿Es Wikileaks bueno o malo? Ninguna de las dos cosas, simplemente es.

Los recientes acontecimientos apuntan a una lucha larga contra Wikileaks y su fundador, Julian Assange, sin reparar en que, en realidad, no se lucha contra ellos específicamente, sino contra la capacidad de Internet de reconstruirlos. Insistiendo tozudamente en cuestiones como el “dar ejemplo”, el “castigar para disuadir intentos similares” o el “se lo pensarán antes de hacer otra cosa parecida”, que han demostrado que nunca funcionan debido a las características de la red y de la misma naturaleza humana. Mientras Internet sea Internet – y no olvidemos que existe una corriente de opinión, mucho más peligrosa, que opina que para evitar este tipo de cosas lo que debemos hacer es eliminar Internet y despojarlo de su característica como red neutral – siempre habrá personas con iniciativas similares, puertos seguros en los que cobijarlas, protocolos con los que esconderlas o distribuirlas, y usuarios dispuestos a apoyarlas económicamente.


Acabo de terminar una entrevista telefónica con una radio española para hablar de Wikileaks, al hilo de la anunciada publicación de la segunda entrega de los documentos sobre la guerra sucia en Afghanistán, y el discurrir del tema sigue, como comentábamos en una entrada anterior, evocando poderosamente lecciones que ya aprendimos en su momento – todos no, solo algunos – en situaciones similares en Internet: ¿se puede “luchar” contra Wikileaks? No, en la medida en que esa lucha no es contra un individuo ni contra una empresa, sino contra la naturleza misma de Internet. ¿Es Wikileaks bueno o malo? Ninguna de las dos cosas, simplemente es.

Los recientes acontecimientos apuntan a una lucha larga contra Wikileaks y su fundador, Julian Assange, sin reparar en que, en realidad, no se lucha contra ellos específicamente, sino contra la capacidad de Internet de reconstruirlos. Insistiendo tozudamente en cuestiones como el “dar ejemplo”, el “castigar para disuadir intentos similares” o el “se lo pensarán antes de hacer otra cosa parecida”, que han demostrado que nunca funcionan debido a las características de la red y de la misma naturaleza humana. Mientras Internet sea Internet – y no olvidemos que existe una corriente de opinión, mucho más peligrosa, que opina que para evitar este tipo de cosas lo que debemos hacer es eliminar Internet y despojarlo de su característica como red neutral – siempre habrá personas con iniciativas similares, puertos seguros en los que cobijarlas, protocolos con los que esconderlas o distribuirlas, y usuarios dispuestos a apoyarlas económicamente. Leer más “Wikileaks no es bueno ni malo… simplemente es”

Polaroid: A Free Magento Theme For Your eCommerce Website

Today we are glad to release a yet another freebie: Polaroid Magento Theme, a professional design skin for the shops powered by the popular open-source ecommerce web application Magento. The theme was designed by eCommerce-Themes and released for Smashing Magazine and its readers. As usual, the theme is absolutely free to use in private and commerical projects.


Today we are glad to release a yet another freebie: Polaroid Magento Theme, a professional design skin for the shops powered by the popular open-source ecommerce web application Magento. The theme was designed by eCommerce-Themes and released for Smashing Magazine and its readers. As usual, the theme is absolutely free to use in private and commerical projects.

Product in Polaroid: A Free Magento Theme For Your eCommerce Website

Download the theme for free! Leer más “Polaroid: A Free Magento Theme For Your eCommerce Website”

Ideas and Challenges in Open Innovation

Reflections

Still from the ” 2nd Annual Open Innovation Summit ” I gathered from twitter via Jose Briones some tips left about the challenges faced by companies when looking for partners in innovation.

They are put here as reflections and hopefully help us to see where hovers often the inertia of some companies.

Surrender to uncertainty.

The information we receive or request is absorbed, but our minds have limitations. Too much information inhibits the meaning of data and makes use of a time incorrectly.

If it is difficult to find the ideal information (correct and legible) , the harder it is to make decisions based on collections of data without meaning and without purpose. It’s a battle is not won, only serves to consume resources and delay decisions.

Surrender yourself to your experience and decide.

Buy when rent is sufficient

As with housing, if our project at a given moment in life has a specific purpose, why buy a house?

Does the feeling of ownership is so strong that force me to buy a patent, or is there an alternative?

Overlooking the white space

The opportunities for disruptive innovation can reside entirely in the company.

The challenge begins with obtaining a clear understanding of the potential of the company. The attitudes of ease in the action lead to the demand outside of what can be done indoors.

The company must accept the challenges as they are – hard!

Look haystacks instead of needles

The perfectionist’s feelings are enemies of discernment when it translates into trying to collect all the possible elements for a decision or activity. A good challenge is to find a pre- definition of the elements to use. Companies and their agents often follow the philosophy that the more alternatives the better choice or decision, but the hype creates chaos.


25 25UTC Agosto 25UTC 2010 por jabaldaia

Reflections

Still from the ” 2nd Annual Open Innovation Summit ” I gathered from twitter via Jose Briones some tips left about the challenges faced by companies when looking for partners in innovation.

They are put here as reflections and hopefully help us to see where hovers often the inertia of some companies.

Surrender to uncertainty.

The information we receive or request is absorbed, but our minds have limitations. Too much information inhibits the meaning of data and makes use of a time incorrectly.

If it is difficult to find the ideal information (correct and legible) , the harder it is to make decisions based on collections of data without meaning and without purpose. It’s a battle is not won, only serves to consume resources and delay decisions.

Surrender yourself to your experience and decide.

Buy when rent is sufficient

As with housing, if our project at a given moment in life has a specific purpose, why buy a house?

Does the feeling of ownership is so strong that force me to buy a patent, or is there an alternative?

Overlooking the white space

The opportunities for disruptive innovation can reside entirely in the company.

The challenge begins with obtaining a clear understanding of the potential of the company. The attitudes of ease in the action lead to the demand outside of what can be done indoors.

The company must accept the challenges as they are – hard!

Look haystacks instead of needles

The perfectionist’s feelings are enemies of discernment when it translates into trying to collect all the possible elements for a decision or activity. A good challenge is to find a pre- definition of the elements to use. Companies and their agents often follow the philosophy that the more alternatives the better choice or decision, but the hype creates chaos. Leer más “Ideas and Challenges in Open Innovation”