Posted by Scott Dunn on September 23, 2008
An opponent called Lincoln a baboon and a senator hit another with his cane. Not too long ago we saw legislators duke it out in Japan, and Google reports statesmen’s physical bashings in Jakarta, Taiwan, and the Czech Republic.
Are those good ole days gone forever? The worst I’ve seen lately is, “My opponent’s campaign has reached a new low with his lies and half-truths.” Really—how about really low blows with the gloves off?
I’d favor capital punishment for attacks on anyone’s family. Otherwise, let it rip.
Aren’t you sick of hearing, “My distinguished opponent, with whom I have the highest personal regard, is somewhat misguided on this issue.” That is a non-Freudian slip. What he was thinking was, “He is a bumbling fool and I question his ancestry and the circumstances of his birth.”
We need a police force that enforces non-civility in all political ads. No gentility, only verbal body slams are allowed. Politeness is very boring. Good ads are intrusive. Old-fashioned boxing (under the Marques of Queensbury rules) is being swamped by Ultimate Fights, where the only thing it seems you can’t do is disembowel. Hockey fans want fistfights, Nascar thrives on wrecks. Gladiators win with blood, toreadors earn ears. Americans want a (fair?) fight.
I want to hear what they really think about issues, and what they know about the other guy’s deficiencies (read dirt). Here’s a format that will work for any televised debates:
- In an isolation booth with one mike
- Just the two of them, seated facing each other, three feet apart
- They take turns asking any question they choose
- The other one has one minute to answer, then the first one can shout over
- After five minutes a bell rings and the other guy asks his question
- Two hour limit
All’s fair in love and war. Why not in elections? Let’s fight!
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Posted by Scott Dunn on August 20, 2008
Are you giving away the farm when you give away some of your product? Are you giving away your secrets, and not protecting your family’s jewels?
Assuming you are a believer in your product and are proud of it, sampling is the most potent arrow in your marketing quiver.
If a picture is worth a hundred words, then a taste is worth a thousand pictures. One definition of a sample is, “A representative part from a larger whole presented for inspection as evidence of quality.” How could there be a smarter prelude to winning marketing?
Some of the greatest food chains are Wegman’s (Rochester, NY) and Whole Foods.
You can’t get out of one of their stores hungry, because the have fed you with delicious samples. And it’s hard to leave without spending a bundle.
There are many ways, other than eating, to sample your goods:
- Barnes Noble wants you to read books, so they make that inviting and easy. They don’t care if you mess up their displays or spill coffee. You will ultimately buy books.
- A good car dealer lets you take a car home for the weekend.
- A masseuse gives you a free neck rub.
- The “spritzer” in Macy’s cosmetics aisle gives you a breath of alluring air.
- A financial planner or a marketing consultant gives you a free hour of advice.
- A stand-up comedian starts with a chuckle, and preacher invokes hope.
It’s important to note that sampling should not be a preview of the price. It’s a demonstration of the confidence in your product. Don’t compete on price: only Wal*Mart can succeed in that game. Don’t give away too much.
Suppose that you are in a play-off with two others for a new customer, and you are each given thirty seconds. The first two gave good, succinct “elevator speeches.” Then it’s your turn. You announce your name, your brand’s main benefit, and bestow a sample. Guess who wins.
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