The Musings Of An Opinionated Sod [Help Me Grow!]

Speed Can Be A Competitive Advantage …
April 30, 2009, 7:03 pm
Filed under: Comment

… which could lead to a quite interesting post on the battle between product development timelines and opportunity costs, however what this is really about is the great Swine Flu game that can be played by going here.

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Calling All Digital Dictators …
April 30, 2009, 1:39 pm
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If you’re Web 99.7 compliant [what do you mean you didn’t know it existed? or are experienced in how digital can/should be used for commercial communication purposes ANNNNNNNND fancy being the head of digital at a Sydney based comms agency … then drop me a line because I have someone who might want to talk to you.

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What’s Yours Called?
April 30, 2009, 6:14 am
Filed under: Comment

In my time, I’ve been in lots of situations where I’ve had to ‘come up with a name’.

Whether it was a band I was playing in or a product I was discussing or a company I was starting … the choice of name has always been something that has inspired great debate.

Some companies have processes and theories in how to choose a name – however having seen what that actually entails first hand, I don’t think shoving a word into a thesaurus and then writing down all the answers while you charge your client top fees for ‘strategic counsel’ is all that smart.

Well, it’s probably quite smart from a financial sense, but that’s about it.

Of course there are some ‘rules’ you should consider when choosing a name – how it translates into other languages is one – but more often than not, you look for a name that embodies something about you or what you do.

OK, so that sounds like I’m suggesting Richard Branson was a virgin when he started the company or the guys behind Naked were errrrrm, nude a lot of the time … and whilst they might be amusing coincidences [allegedly], what I actually meant was that people deciding upon a name tend to gravitate to things that express their view or attitude or experience or something that has additional meaning to them.

Sometimes it can come quite quickly … cynic took a day thanks to a book I was reading at the time … however I also know that when we launched our ridiculously stupid and ego fulfilling company, potent_flix, we took weeks and weeks to come to some sort of consensus.

Seriously, if you want a less frustrating life, DON’T choose a name via committee … I guarantee you’ll spend half the time arguing and the other half wondering how you can kill everyone else and get away with it.

And whilst people say a name isn’t important – it’s more about what a company does – I don’t think too many people would like to fly with Crashalot Airlines.

So how do you choose?

Well contrary to companies like LANDOR, I don’t think there’s a ‘process’.

Sure there’s a bunch of things you have to consider … but interms of a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach?

Well maybe that works in the minds of certain companies however on planet earth, I doubt it.

You fluctuate between going ‘cool’ or ‘corporate’.

What you ‘do’ or how you ‘think’.

‘Attitude’ or ‘delivery’.

You get the idea …

And that’s only the first stage … wait till you have to decide on how the bloody thing looks!


Anyway, as usual, I digress, I mention all these things because whilst in China – amongst all the piles and piles of DVD’s from production companies – one stood out.

Now you could say it’s a very clever marketing ploy – because in a very competitive industry, getting noticed is half the battle – however something tells me that whilst this company might appeal to certain deviants within the industry, that wasn’t the real reason behind the choice of name … which begs the question, what the hell was the reason?






























Is This The Laziest Ad In The World …
April 29, 2009, 8:31 am
Filed under: Comment

Time … as many have said … is a commodity.

I am sure I wouldn’t be wrong to suggest we’ve all gone through situations where the time available has impacted what we’ve wanted to do/achieve.

Sometimes this limitation of time is down to us … maybe we’ve miscalculated how long something would take to do or – a personal favourite of mine – we’ve procrastinated to the point where we’re left with a fraction of what we could have had.

There’s other scenarios too …

Maybe there’s been a sudden change of situation that means a much quicker response is required or it could be that an opportunity presents itself where despite all practicality screaming “NOOOOOOO”, you just have to give it a go, if only to satisfy your curiosity.

However, as much as there are an almost limitless amount of circumstances that can result in time being impacted, more often than not, when it absolutely matters – you will have certain standards that ensure what you do isn’t the cheapest or nastiest solution.

Except for those who work in adland it seems.

Ladies and gentlemen … boys and girls … I present you with the laziest in “lazy ads of the World” …

Now I’ve been around long enough to know there may be mitigating circumstances …

1/ The client briefed the agency late

2/ The client kept turning down their ideas and the deadline had arrived

3/ The client thought they were a creative genius

… but regardless of that, it is totally shit.

Now to be fair, I only saw the ad in the American press, so there may be a TV spot that turns this car crash into more of a slight car bump – but it’s still terrible.

Jesus, they’re small ice-creams … surely there’s a bunch of ways they could have promoted them other than “Test Drive”.


What about …

1/ The “depression-of-the-recession-is-making-Americans-eat-so-we’ve-launched-this-so-you-can-eat-your-troubles-away-but-not-need-expensive-medical-treatment-once-it-all-gets-better” ice cream.

2/ Helping supermodels know what it’s like to be normal.

3/ To you they’re small but to Bazza, they’re still bloody huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuge

Hell, even “American classics made smaller” could of led to some interesting stuff [Closing shot: Tom Cruise with the voice over, “However some things are small enough already!”]

But this?


It’s bloody terrible and yet again it demonstrates why all ads should feature the names of the people responsible for them – given most in adland are shameless fame seekers [me included] maybe the potential of ‘name & shame’ may reduce ads like this … ads that are about as individual, differentiatied and motivating as the Volvo range since 1975.

Advertising Exec Syndrome: Also Known As Swine Flu …
April 28, 2009, 1:16 pm
Filed under: Comment

It could be argued that during SARS, HK suffered the most.

There’s lots of reasons for this – some down to the Governments desperate attempts to keep a lid on things – so it’s reassuring to know with the swine flu that is happening on the other side of the planet, the planes and airport of HK have all leapt into action giving warnings and checking for people with symptoms via temperature cameras.

However, this leads to a question: for people coming into HK who have not been here before, does this action reassure or create fear?

Given travel agents and Governments are seemingly cancelling/advising everyone to not eat Mexican food, let alone visit the country, is HK’s proactive stance a good thing or a demonstration of a country that doesn’t want to get caught out/blamed in the future?

[PS: If the El Preseidente of Mexico puts out a message on Youtube – I will expect everyone who slagged off Mr Domino’s to maintain their air of distain! Ha!]