No more grand narrative?

After Sean let fly at the market research business I’m pleased to see Piers doing the same for the trendspotters. For me, there’s a message linking both: can we get away from putting our faith in magic feathers and soothsayers? I think if we do, we could move to much less grandiose but fertile territory.

Social objects and magic feathers

I’m an enthusiastic participant in the whole “social object” conversation. (Hugh crystallised it first here.) I just want to add a caveat before we all get carried away and talk about Dumbo. In the film, Dumbo stops believing he can fly, but his only friend, Timothy Mouse, improvises to rescue him. Timothy plucks a feather […]

Language pitfalls

Mark Earls writes about the pitfalls of language. In particular he looks at how European languages emphasise objects doing things to other objects. Other languages are much more into processes. I think one manifestation of this is the word “brand”. Our language treats it like a fixed thing with an independent existence that can have […]

Podcast: marketing, bananas and more

Last week I had a great conversation with Hugh Macleod and Mark Earls (author of Welcome to the Creative Age and more recently Herd.) We talked about lots of stuff loosley related to Marketing 2.0, especially social objects and how the old idea of branding is looking a bit unconvincing. We managed to weave in […]

Coalitions of the willing

I used that phrase back in February. I think it’s a good way to describe a way of thinking about how to respond to what’s created by Web 2.0: you can’t control it you need to manage people as if they’re volunteers. James and I are going to use this title for our workshops next […]

Bored at Berkeley

A tweet from David Smith led me to this post by Alan Cann. Alan shows this soporific video; it’s from an extensive range published by UC Berkeley on YouTube. I feel a bit guilty picking on this particular lecturer as there are plenty of others there who are comparable. And of course I welcome Berkeley […]

The Thunderbird Six Syndrome

Hugh’s latest includes this observation: A few weeks ago I was having lunch with somebody very high up the global Digital Advertising foodchain. He was telling me about how once he was pitching for a ten million dollar account with a large international client. The client basically said, “I love the idea. Let’s do it. […]

Rock in a hard place

There’s been quite a scare over the Bank of England providing emergency lending to Northern Rock bank. Out of curiosity I wondered how my building society the Chelsea might be responding online. High on the home page was the link shown here: And what about Northern Rock itself? Absolutely nothing on the home page, except […]

Virgin flight

PSFK’s report on the first Virgin America flight from LAX to SFO makes it sound pretty good.

When corporate blogging gets tough…

Johnson & Johnson are suing the Red Cross over the use of the Red Cross. Ah good morning Mr Bull, may I show you this large red rag? Well, actually they’re suing because the Red Cross is licensing other for-profits to use the cross in areas where, JNJ claim, they have exclusive rights. Well, that’s […]