Monday, December 31, 2007


Resolutions pretty much suck. Most of them don't survive the first week and by February you have forgotten 99% of them.

Christine Kane came up with a good idea: Instead of having multiple resolutions, just focus on one word.
She writes:

"For instance, let’s take one of the examples above. Let’s say you are one of the many people who would normally choose “Get Organized.” You look around to see clutter and crap all over your life. You’re tired of the chaos. So, you think, “I need to get organized. That should be my Resolution this year.”

But then you read this blog. You decide to try it.

You sit with your clutter. You spend a few days pondering words that will inspire you. You realize in an “Ah-Ha!” moment that you tend to cling to lots of things. You’re scared to let go. So you choose the word “Release” because it inspires you in a bigger way than “Get organized.”

So, every time you approach your clutter you remind yourself of that word. “Release,” you say softly. You start to let the clutter go. Eventually, you realize that you’re still holding on to lots more than just physical clutter. You realize that you hold onto resentment at old relationships. “Release,” you remind yourself. You realize that holding on is affecting your diet and health. “Release” applies to some of the extra weight you’ve gained as well. Throughout the year, you can see clearly how much you hold on. “Release” is your touchstone. It grows you throughout the year. It becomes your guiding force, not your harsh standard.

Your clutter became your teacher simply because you shifted your intent towards it. This wouldn’t have happened if you’d opted only to “Get Organized.”

Looking at her list, I'm torn between Courage and Discipline.

On one hand, Courage is needed if you want to be a change agent. Courage is needed to make a difference. Courage is needed to stand out in a sea of mediocrity.

On the other hand, discipline is necessary to be more things done, stick to a healthier diet, abolish unhealthy habits, work out more often, find a better balance between work and family.

Well, what the heck, I won't stick to Christie's idea 100% and call my resolution for 2008: Discipline & Courage.
See me stick to that resolution in 2008.

Until then, enjoy the last day of 2007.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

One 'H' might kill your business

Not sure, if the correct spelling is important for Asphalt Services companies. I'm too much of a spelling stickler.

Saturday, December 29, 2007


We're painting the house. Well, in typical post-post-modern fashion, we pay for the service and someone else does it. These are the colors we chose: Orange for the majority of the house, blue for the sidings. Every time I evaluate the progress, the lyrics from Gnarls Barkley's 'Crazy' come to mind:

Maybe I'm crazy
Maybe you're crazy
Maybe we're crazy

Peace on Earth

These two have domination issues: Who is eating first? Who sleeps on what pillow? Who is the king of the house?
Yesterday afternoon they cleared up all their issues and took a nap together.
Is it the holiday spirit?

Friday, December 28, 2007


The Watts Towers are an ode to the power of the human spirit.
Quoting Simon Rodia, the builder:

"I had in mind to do something big and I did it."

It's sometimes that easy.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Frohe Weihnachten

In case you need to follow Santa, please start here. NORAD has tracked Santa's flight for years and new features have been added.

And, if you need a good laugh, Platform A created this masterpiece for its media partners. Listening to lyrics about BT supported by a Xmas theme made me shiver.

Last but not least, if you need some traditional Christmas inspiration, explore here.

Or just go here.

Merry Christmas.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Pretty, peas

Want to make a difference? Instead buying the fourth present for your loved ones, spend the money for a worthy cause:

Susan Reynolds underwent surgery yesterday, seems to be doing well and can now continue her fight against breast cancer.

Susan shared her story a few weeks ago, explaining how she calmed herself and her body down with a bag of peas after the initial biopsy. And this initial story started a whole movement. It involved many , many people sharing and spreading that story through email, IM and Twitter. Suddenly, people showed their support through various incarnations of peas.

There's a lot of hope because cancer treatments have become very sophisticated. And there's even more hope because there's a community that cares. And that community is growing. So, maybe save that umptenth present for another year and do something to change the world. One pea at a time. Start here.

P.S.: Many of us have lost loved ones through cancer. My parents are currently battling it and a good friend of mine lost his fight more than 4 years ago. Stephan Geesing was a talented writer, speech therapist and plain idea man. I've spent many evenings with him and his wife discussing politics, culture or plain life. His son was just born when he discovered the brain tumor, he battled for months, having exhausting surgeries after surgeries until his body had to give in.
I think a lot about him, how he never met my kid and how I'll never be able to speak to him again. But I'm with him right now in thoughts.

Stephan, I miss you a lot. This pea is for you.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Last day in the office

The year comes to a close, offices will be deserted and people will rest. But are they really resting?

Writing for the NY Times, Lisa Belkin explored the need for white space,places outside of the typical environment, to get real work done in her column titled: You won't find me in my office working.

Lisa Belkins believes many of us are
“looking for “white space,” a term creeping into the language of work to describe a place where the actual work gets done. Desks suffice for answering phones and filing forms, but when it comes to the creative or introspective aspects of a job, desks can be uninspiring at best, or formidable obstacles at worst.

So we leave those desks. Because we can. We take our laptops and seek shelter (and WiFi) either elsewhere in the building, as Mr. Judkins does, or farther away in libraries and bookstores.

The term “white space” implies a place set apart, physically and mentally. It is not only used by graphic artists to describe the empty space in a layout, but also by time managers to explain the minutes frittered away between appointments on office calendars.

Andy Hines, who studies the future of work at the Washington office of Social Technologies, a global consulting firm, said white space is “what we are looking for when we have thinking to do.”

My white space is a room filled with good music and the TV on in the background. Hey, everybody is different.

Or as Belkin says: "That in the end might be ultimate purpose of white space: The choosing, the control."

May you find many opportunities to enjoy your white space during the holidays.

Mobile Marketing that works

That's what you see when you drive through Los Angeles during the day.(And, yes, these are clouds and there was even rain afterwards...imagine!)
Marketing the sleeper Juno, this truck features the bedroom of Juno MacGuff. You can't see the details but this bedroom was as close to a teenager's bedroom as you've ever seen.

Al Gore wouldn't this kind of promotion but it makes you look again. And risk your life to take a picture with your iPhone (maybe the worst integrated phone in the market) while driving.

Thursday, December 20, 2007


When I started in advertising, taglines were everything. We sat in our offices for hours, days, weeks, even months to come up with a tagline. The tagline was the centerpiece of the campaign - once we established it, everything else fell into place: Commercials, Print, Billboards, Stickers, etc.

Things have changed dramatically: Michael Jackson tapes his face with weird stickers, a cowboy became president (oops, I guess it's not the first time) and taglines are now on life support, according to this article from Brandweek:

“Too often, taglines are used as safety nets out of a fear that the rest of the campaign isn’t communicating well enough, he said.

Taglines are often more utilitarian and less emotional, experts say. They tend to be fed through the focus group mill until they’re watered down beyond recognition. That process does not produce “Think Different,” “Got Milk?” or “Just Do It.”

“If the Nike tagline were suggested today, the question back would probably be, ‘Just do what?’” said Wolfsohn. “There’s a level of trepidation now that people won’t get it and they won’t be able to parrot the idea back to you. So, taglines get over-defined.”

That’s when they lose strength and become meaningless, he said.
For a slogan to stick, it’s not just coming up with five catchy words or less, said Landor & Associates’ managing director Allen Adamson. It’s vital to weave that message through all the communications and the very brand DNA itself.

“It has to be the right promise, with the brand living up to it, expressed in a sticky, unexpected way,” Adamson said. “And then you have to spend money and stay with it for the long haul.”

He points to GE’s “Imagination at Work” as a breakthrough tagline because it’s more than a slogan. “It’s the business strategy,” he said. “It’s the mission of the company.”

It's a good article and I would like to add one important factor:

Taglines reflect the brand promise. Looking at today's taglines, the promise is very mediocre at best, horrendous at worst: (With a name like Smuckers, it has to be good. It's a new morning. Brew something good) Just pointless lines that serve no purpose except to fill up the pockets of agencies.

Consumers don't buy promises anymore. They buy great product and brand experiences. Big ideas don't come out of advertising, they come out of R&D labs and consumer insights. Great products need low advertising support and high-involvement in conversational marketing. Mediocre product need the advertising idea but these ideas will fall shirt in the end because product experience is king.

I'm glad to see the mind-numbing taglines leave the market and head to the traditional marketing graveyard. Taglines based on the heart and soul of a brand and product experience will continue to live and thrive. Because they are not based on a promise, they are based on facts.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Trust is everything

While working with an amazing design agency, I was again reminded how important trust is:

- Trust in your gust
- Trust in trust
- Trust in empowerment

Think about it: Somebody outside of your area of expertise shows your their work. Your only job when looking at their work is to trust your gut. Does it feel good? Does it get you excited? Don't argue about details because, frankly, you don't know what you're talking about. Exceptional artists require that trust: If you didn't trust David Lynch, more than likely you will Mulholland Falls. Trust doesn't mean you follow them blindly, you can question anything. But you should only question because of your gut feeling.

Rely on your gut. And trust. You might change your opinion at one point but for now, stick with it. You can question everything. All day long. rely on your trust to avoid this human desire. Questioning everything gets you nowhere.

Last but not least, trust in empowerment. If you hired somebody to do a good job, trust them. Sure, ask good questions, initiate a dialogue but never, ever question the power you gave them. It will result in the Russian doll syndrome: You will hire smaller people than yourself, and these small peopel will hire even smaller people until you end up with intellectual dwarfs.

Collaboration and innovative ideas need a giant amongst giants, not a giant amongst dwarfs.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


We all look for inspirations. It's very easy to find. But we often close our eyes to the inspirations surrounding us.
It's a Catch 22: If you're not open for inspiration, you won't find it. Sorry, dude, it's all on you to be inspired.

My advice: keep moving. Being stuck in an office, at home in front of the computer or TV won't inspire you. Get up, move your legs and find your inspiration outside of your own little world.

My wife is inspired by Joshua Tree. Her dream is a small house close to the National Park. Walking around the desert, soaking in the heat, smell and colors inspires her to move forward.

I'm inspired by traveling as well. But traveling doesn't mean foreign cultures. Travel might mean visiting museums exploring the Murakami exhibition, eating at the weirdest restaurant in Los Angeles or just listen to music that's pretty much out there.

Inspiration happens when you shift from your head to your body. Holiday time might be the right time for introspection. I'd rather keep moving and get inspired. George Clinton released an album years ago called: Move your mind...and your ass will follow. Sorry, George.

I'd rather move my ass and my mind will follow.

And, once you're done moving, just watch the worst movie ever. At least it's not the most mediocre movie ever. There's a lot to say about that.
The movie below might give you the inspiration you're looking for.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Banner Ad of the year

It's the time of the year when you go to a Xmas party, drink one or two too many and end up driving drunk. The consequences can be dire: ranging from loss of your license to killing yourself, or even worse, others. The UK Department for Transport and Leo Burnett wanted to creatively communicate above sermon and worked with Weapon 7 on the execution.

They came up with such a clever ad, it just floored me: An ad in rewind.
So, whenever you head out to your party and need a little reminder to keep it to two glasses of wine, just click here.

Hat Tip to 30gms.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Quote of the day

"Allow yourself to want things, no matter the disappointment. Desire is never the mistake."

Paula McLain, writing in today's NY Times: The Holiday of my dreams was just that.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

I want a scarf for Christmas

Moving Brands, an innovative corporate identity design agency out of the UK, developed a fascinating project focused on one idea: Fashion should be done by the people and not just a few select fashion designers.

Introducing Weare, an outstanding idea that merges fashion and technology with social networking.
As the Weare site explains:

"Last Christmas we set up a screen made of fairy lights in the Moving Brands window.

We then invited people to send messages and drawings, via a simple web-interface, to be shown in sequence in the window. The window was captured by webcam and broadcast live to the internet.

We stored everything sent to the window in a gallery, and the full sequence has been used to create this scarf."

You can buy the limited edition scarf online through the site or in selected shops in London. I tried to purchase it but since I live in the US, I wasn't able to input my info.

And, while you're shopping, you can create the next Weare product by contributing designs or visuals. And vote for what the next Weare product should be. I contributed an unrecognizable heart and smiley face. Props to me!

So simple and fascinating. I wish I would have come up with this idea.

Hat tip to Russel Davies.

Friday, December 14, 2007

Thought of the day

When was the last time you did something people say you cannot do?

It's the time of the year to challenge yourself. And hope to experience this pleasure by end of 2008. I'm working on it.

Are you?

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Bjork - the ultimate lovemark

Went last night to see Bjork at the Nokia Theatre in Los Angeles. Her show was a bit uneven with an emphasis on ballads in the first half and EDM in the second half. I've been a fan of Bjork forever and she always finds a way to draw me in. While I was enjoying the show, I started to think about the idea of lovemarks.

Kevin Robers from Saatchi & Saatchi fame, created the idea of Lovemarks.

What are lovemarks?

Kevin Roberts explains:
"Lovemarks transcend brands. They deliver beyond your expectations of great performance. Like great brands, they sit on top of high levels of respect - but there the similarities end.

Lovemarks reach your heart as well as your mind, creating an intimate, emotional connection that you just can’t live without. Ever.

Take a brand away and people will find a replacement. Take a Lovemark away and people will protest its absence. Lovemarks are a relationship, not a mere transaction. You don’t just buy Lovemarks, you embrace them passionately. That’s why you never want to let go.

Put simply, Lovemarks inspire loyalty beyond reason."

I bet if you'd asked the audience at last night's performance, everybody would consider Bjork a lovemark. Bjork has an interesting way of creating relationships with her audience, an emotional connection you never want to let go of. Now, how are lovemarks created?

Kevin Roberts continues:
"A Lovemark’s high Love is infused with these three intangible, yet very real, ingredients: Mystery, Sensuality and Intimacy.

Mystery draws together stories, metaphors, dreams and symbols. It is where past, present and future become one.

Mystery adds to the complexity of relationships and experiences because people are drawn to what they don’t know. After all, if we knew everything, there would be nothing left to learn or to wonder at.

Sensuality keeps the five senses on constant alert for new textures, intriguing scents and tastes, wonderful music. Sight, hearing, smell, touch, taste.

Our senses work together to alert us, lift us, transport us. When they are stimulated at the same time, the results are unforgettable. It is through the five senses we experience the world and create our memories.

Intimacy means empathy, commitment and passion. The close connections that win intense loyalty as well as the small perfect gesture. These are often remembered long after functions and benefits have faded away.

Without Intimacy people cannot feel they own a brand, and without that conviction a brand can never become a Lovemark."

Mystery: Bjork finds a way through her appearance and clothing choices to create an air of mystery. Her upbringing in Iceland, which is mysterious in itself, combined with her need to explore new venues, countries and music makes us want to know more about her. She also never falls into the trap of phoning her next album in, always exploring new ideas, new patterns. I've never liked a Bjork album after the first listening. It always took me a few times until I couldn't stop listening anymore. She never creates the expected, always surprises. In addition, she spaces her performances out so you never get enough of her. Yesterday, she mentioned that she won't return to the US for 3 years and that made her performance even more special.

Sensuality: Bjork's performances encompass almost all senses and transport us to a place not many other artists ever visited. I've heard her say in an interview that she's always searching for the perfect song. We all know she'll never create it but we're always hoping with her.

Intimacy: That's her strongest asset. Even though we know she's a very strong woman with even stronger convictions, she feels like a vulnerable, almost child-like person on stage. Someone you just want to protect from this bad, bad world. Her dance moves, her singing has a very raw, not-broken-by-the-adult-world quality to it. Something wondrous that you normally experience when you see little kids dance or sing: Just for themselves, not a care in the world burdening them.

The concept of lovemarks will become even more important in the new marketing landscape. Bjork didn't become a lovemark by focusing on quarterly profits or short-term sales. She became a lovemark through authenticity and careful brand planning. Most brands should take a lesson from her.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

I'm dreaming...

...of a social network that allows me to customize my engagement level of each individual connection.
You're a foodie and your favorite movie is Rambo? I want to read your restaurant reviews. Not your movie reviews.
You're a loner with eclectic music taster? I don't care about dating tips but would love to find out about new music from you.

And, while we're at it, I would love to participate in an opt-in advertising model in this network. Joe BMW shares with advertisers that he will buy a new car in 2 months. He's interested in a 3-Series BMW. Joe BMW wants to hear from competitive advertisers.
Any competitive advantages? Deals? Promotions? Once Joe BMW bought the car, he can opt-out, not to hear from automotive advertisers again until he's in market again.

One can dream.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

LinkedIn thinks I'm into Martha

LinkedIn just redesigned their site and it created some buzz in the blogosphere. One of the new features is the news feed, tailored to your company and interests. Interesting idea to create more stickiness on the site but it just doesn't work for me.

A little background: I work at Genex, an interactive marketing company. Genex was bought by Meredith a few months ago. Most of you know that Meredith has a huge footprint in the female marketing space. And that's the only explanation for my feed: Martha news all the time. Now, Genex might be owned by Meredith but my job is to focus on media for clients with mainly male audiences.
I'm sure I'm not only with this poor customization example of LinkedIn: Many digital agencies have various disciplines under one roof: SEM, SEO, Media, Engineering, QA, etc. What kind of feeds do they receive? Sure, there's a customization option on the feed but you need a lot of people within your organization to care about the feed before these changes really show up. And what if these users are mostly engineers?

I think many people will find this feature not useful and LinkedIn just gave them another reason not to come up. I just wish I could customize the feed for my own page or even be allowed to turn it off.
When is LinkedIn 3.0 happening?

Monday, December 10, 2007

Pale Blue Dot

Carl Sagan narrates this video, destined to make us all feel more humble and, in some ways, even more lost. The pale blue dot he is referring to is the image that the Voyager 1 took of earth as it was passing Saturn, ~4 billion miles away.

As Carl Sagan says: "No sign that there's someone out there that will come to save us from ourselves."

I might be an optimist but I believe that the advent of Social Networking in combination with Wikinomics will help to save us from ourselves. Humans tend to look for answers by attaching themselves to religions and institutions. This age is coming to an end because these institutions are not capable of providing answers. Instead, we start to rely on each other and the human spirit. Technology allows us to build the infrastructure that changes the age of institutions to the age of humans.

When thinking about extraterrestrial life, I always believed that the only thing scarier than discovering that we are not alone is realizing that we actually are.
Social Networking might help us understand that we're not as alone as we believe.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Chevy Malibu - Yahoo! promotion update

It's Saturday 9.35am PT and currently there are 91 reviews. Most of them are positive, many of the negative reviews (quoted below) have been removed.
I had no idea Yahoo! removed reviews. Not cool. Why bother with reviews then? Did GM push the money button and 'asked' Yahoo! to remove the negative reviews? No matter what, shame on one of you or both.

Friday, December 7, 2007

Chevy Malibu - How can I ignore you?

Chevy tried something interesting today on Yahoo's homepage: Quoting user reviews and linking directly to the Yahoo! Auto Chevy Malibu review page.
I counted 41 reviews at 9.20 am PT: 22 positive, 12, negative and 7 reviews discussing the advertising tactics or supporting domestic automakers with patriotic arguments.

A few quotes:


Why there are so many haters in this country? Some poeple says so nagative about it, and obviously, they don't even own one. People are already saying it breaks when warranty expires. but the car just out. Why are u such a bad person? To judge it buy one and tell us when 5 years later the warranty expired and when the car does break. It just don't make sense over the old products agains the new ones. Or does someone paying you to say it?

The last American car that I owned was a Chevrolet. It was a maintenance
nightmare and a piece of junk. Since this horrible experience I only drive vehicles for Toyota and Honda.


another piece of general motors junk..i have been waiting 30 years for them to come even close to camry or accord. needs better pricing to bring the folks back..lutz is a joke..discusted detroiter..

i love the new malibu. it is the best i ever owned. all i ever by is a chevy. my grandfathers car has over 300,000 miles on it and it runs great. and the trucks are awesome 2

best car for the price
when i first saw this car i thought is was a audi a6

just wondering how many of these comments were written by GM, the lack of cons gives it away

is car is the definite class act of the mid-size market. Styling is heads and shoulders above the Accord and especially the Camry (does anyone really think the bulbous styling is really attractive?).

This is a giant step forward and is a compeditive offering. We should stop bashing our selfs as Americans and stop living in the past with respect that only Japan can build a good car at this price point.

Go test drive this car and take a close look. It may change your perspective!

Some of these comments explain why our country is in is decline. Go to Japan and Germany to see how loyal their people are to domestic autos. They understand the importance of the auto industry and the export business. Our country has become an import happy country and all the good jobs are gone because we have no loyalty to our own products.

If the good reviews supposedly come from GM dealers or GM HQ or GM marketers, then the reviews bashing the Malibu probably come from Toyota dealers, Toyota HQ or Toyota marketers or all other "foreign" car makers.

I was under the impression that these comments were to be left by people that own the cars so you could get an impression of what people think about it on a daily basis. Its a little unnerving to see that half of the people on here that are just in LOVE with their rice burners have nothing but bad things to say about this car, because well, its a car that will probably knock their company off its high horse.

Holy Cow, how many of these reviews were written by GM dealers or someone at the GM HQ's.. WOW..!!! I had a 2003 Malibu that was the biggest piece of crap I've ever owned, and that included Ford Escorts..!!! I sold it at 44k with a blown intake manifold, yeah, they've been building cars for 80 years but can't make an intake manifold that won't leak.

Not for nothing, I think Yahoo to support the the ad on its homepage or GM marketing wrote 90% of the user reviews on this board. The language and the style of most of the posts seem like the same person wrote the positive feedbacks. Thats not to say that the car isn't decent, it is. But, it would be a travesty for these two publicly traded companies, to put an ad up Quoting Yahoo Users to get people to click and then misrepresent themselves as normal owners and buyers. The truth is that this car is competive against Toyota, Nissan, and Honda. It does have standard features that are included that the other cars lack. But we all mistrust the longevity and future values of a Chevy and I doubt it will hold up as well as its Japanese look-a-likes. If you are shopping check it out, but don't be fooled by these self posts that GM is flaunting in its Yahoo AD.

I just bought this car and am very impressed with the overall performance and value of this vehicle.... Job well done Chevy !

It's interesting how the discussion changed from reviewing the car to discussing the quality issues (or perception thereof) of domestic automakers. Chevy should have expected it because that's the real conversation happening out there. People have the perception that domestic automakers don't have the same quality product as Japanese automakers.

You can't fight this perception with a massive media blitz and hope for attitudinal changes. Instead, Chevy should have a found a way to insert themselves into this conversation and answer critics with facts (extended warranty) and maybe even some discussion about other brands. If you want to access the world of conversational marketing, you need to listen, respond and join. Just linking to user reviews and hoping for the best doesn't do the job. It will do more harm than good.

Update: I started this post at 9.20 and it's now 10.20 am - No reviews have been posted in the last hour.

Update: Interestingly, the number of reviews have not changed but new reviews are coming in. Bad reviews are still visible but they seem to be switching out old ones. Not sure. However, the discussion has deteroriated. One of the last posts:

Jesus is God!
YAYAYAY YAY YAY YAy YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YAY YAY YAY YAY YAY YAY YAY YAY YAY!!!! GO GM GO ...

Update: It's 10:08 pm, the campaign has ended. Still only 41 reviews, it seems the old ones drop and the reviews are limited to 41 posts. Lame.

Thursday, December 6, 2007

The power of conversational marketing

A few weeks ago I sat down with a friend. He spoke about his newest venture, how he's trying to save some money by either cutting down on certain services or just plainly eliminating them. At one point we talked about phone service and Skype came up.
I thought about taking out the landline at home and just replacing with our cellphones or adding another solution, such as Skype. Since I showed interest, he started raving about all the advantages, his minor complaints and the cost savings.

After listening to his sermon, I asked:
"I was always interested in Skype but their site didn't explain the process appropriately and I felt I didn't really know where to start. What did you do?"
"Go to Skype to start your service and go to Amazon to buy the phone. It's cheaper there."
"You have a minute? Show me what I should order on Skype and I'll figure out the rest."
5 minutes later I was a Skype customer and had a brand new phone.

That's the power of Conversational Marketing and WOM:
Complex decisions can be simplified within minutes, known brands can be forgotten and cancelled within seconds and 'too-complex-for-my-pea-brain-site-experiences' can be forgotten.

And, yes, Skype rocks.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Will it blend?

It still works and entertains but the series has lost its luster. I guess it's time to blend the blender as the big finale.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Dove onslaught

That's what happens when you develop a moral high ground campaign in a siloed organization.

Monday, December 3, 2007

Dear Hotels,

you charge a lot of money for a bed, bathroom and some amenities. But you don't seem to think about customer experience.
Case in point, this sad excuse of a body lotion bottle. It's so badly designed that you have to use Hulk-like forces to squeeze the lotion out. And even if you can bench-press 500 lbs., most of the lotion will remain in the bottle. Sure, I can live with dry skin for a few days but the frustration you created will be with me for a long time. Why not offer refillable bottles of shampoo, lotion and conditioner just like in any mediocre spa? It will help the environment and allow me to have silky, smooth skin again.
Oh, and while you're at it, why don't you increase the bandwidth of your wired and wireless Internet access? It's not 1996 anymore and my connection shouldn't feel like AOL is still running the show. Just a thought.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

We are the people we have been waiting for

Brilliant Thomas Friedman discusses the climate change in his newest column, titled 'The People We Have Been Waiting For'. He sees no hope that any politician will drastically change the approach to climate change, but, at the same time, he sees major signs of hope outside of the beltway. He names Google and their announcement to invest million in developing its own energy business and the M.I.T Energy Club.

Friedman ends:
"They’re not waiting for G.M. Their goal, they explain on their Web site — — is “to identify the key characteristics of events like the race to the moon and then transpose this energy, passion, focus and urgency” on catalyzing a global team to build a clean car. I just love their tag line. It’s what gives me hope:

“We are the people we have been waiting for.”

We see it everywhere, people are taking control. It's much more than just fast-forwarding through commercials or posting Jackass-style videos on YouTube. It's on a much more fundamental, society-changing level:
Politicians and big institutions have failed us. Slowly but surely, we're chipping away at their power base until these institutions will be just faint reminder of better (for them) times.
Politicians and brands need to understand that old formulas are just that: old formulas. They don't need a new formula, they need a new approach, a new mindset.
And they better do it fast because we have no reason for wait. We're working on our own formula.

Saturday, December 1, 2007


"A Roman general in the time of Caesar had a motto - "If it is possible, it is done. If it is impossible... it will be done." And that, ladies and gentlemen, is what I live by."

From the movie Evel Knievel.