Thursday, July 18, 2019

First in an occasional series.

Gobbledegook features actual quotations from actual press-releases
purportedly uttered by actual people.
All in absolutely no-discernible language.


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Example One:
“For the last six months, I’ve been doing brand and digital transformation consulting in order to get further upstream with brands and help solve their most complex business problems. What I now see as fact is that brands need partners who boot up business-first and can help them better understand their data and customers. Yes, creativity and experience matter more than ever, but sustainable business growth only happens when intelligent data, tech, and creative solutions work harmoniously together. Art and science are required in equal parts.”

Example Two:
"With this new U.S. leadership team in place, we will bring to our clients what they really need: personalized experiences at scale, to enable them to leapfrog the competition. Clients are feeling pressure from ecommerce platforms, walled gardens and fierce competition from D2C brands.”

Example Three:
"Still, with social media becoming ubiquitous, and consumers seeking more authentic, transparent messaging, luxury brands are strategically ceding control of their marketing content, working with both influencers and regular customers to co-create experiences. They’re also tapping into shoppable media, making it far easier for customers to go from a point of discovery to a point of purchase.

"As an increasing share of luxury purchases moves online, brands are using new forms of content — influencer, UGC, etc. — to engage and convert their audiences directly on platform."


Wednesday, July 17, 2019

How to Deck.

In my 347 years in advertising (that's just this month), I've noticed a disturbing proliferation of decks.

The fact is, I hardly heard the work deck until about 15 years ago. Now we have whole departments in agencies who produce nothing more than decks. You have deck designers. You have people whose entire careers depend on decks. As an industry, we produce more justification by way of decks than either results or consumer-facing work.

Even creative presentations when there's always too much work to present in too little time, work is always preceded by on average 37 pages of deck. Briefs, which to be useful (and by definition) should be brief, are often 16MB of virtually undownloadable deckage with no point of view and no focal point.

Here's a Google nGram of the words "presentation deck" from 1990 till 2008. (I can find no data after that date.) The use of the words has increased approximately 800% during that time frame.
In fact, the world's leading dictionaries don't currently have a definition of "deck" as the word is used in ad agencies.
Alongside of this PowerPoint horror show is something else. Decks through the years have gotten increasingly more "chartified."

I'll freely admit, I'm from the generation that knows how to read charts. I can use an actual paper map to find a location. I can even install a printer following written instructions not pictograms. But about 95% of the charts and graphs I see I can make no sense of. 

a) They're usually too small to be read from across the room.
b) They usually five shades of blue or green to indicate different readings.
or, c) They usually started out meaningless and no amount of explanation and bad graphic design can fix that.

Just to be helpful, I've come up with a few all-purpose charts that can be inserted anywhere in any presentation. They are so absolutely devoid of meaning that those using them will surely skyrocket to the top. You'll be giving TED Talks (Ideas that Mutter) in virtually no time.

Too often, it seems to me, our business is no longer about doing work. It's about creating decks that explain work that, if it really works (in real life, not in a conference room) really needs no explanation.

Imagine if before telling a joke or a story, you had to precede it with a lengthy, abstract thesis on what it says and why. That's what we seem to be doing.

Billable hours.

The Creative Cornucopia.

Gartner's Quadrant of I-words.

Parallelogram of Positivity




Tuesday, July 16, 2019

The lost calendar of Garry Veevee.




5:00-5:30
Morning tweet time. Send out 37 tweets.
5:30-6:00
Produce, distribute and syndicate video of me sending out 37 tweets.
6:00-6:30
Negotiate in mirror to buy New York Jets.
6:30-7:00
Produce, distribute and syndicate video on ‘hustling your way to your father’s $50 million fortune.’
7:00-7:30
Strategically choose slogan for today’s t-shirt wisdom.
7:30-8:00
Polish Garry Veevee inspirational sneakers.
8:00-8:30
Put on Garry Veevee inspirational socks.
8:30-9:00
Put on Garry Veevee inspirational boxers.
9:00-9:30
Produce, distribute and syndicate video of Garry Veevee getting dressed.
10:00-10:30
Consider speaking of Garry Veevee only in the 3rd person.
10:30-11:00
Think about why there’s no 4th person. It’s always good to go one better.
11:00-11:30
Produce, distribute and syndicate video about producing, distributing and syndicating videos about producing, distributing and syndicating videos.
11:30-12:00
Tweets promoting aforementioned videos.
12:00-12:02
Power Lunch.
12:02-12:30
Send out 10 four-minute videos in just 28 minutes.
12:30-1:00
Accept Guinness Award for high-speed blathering.
1:00-1:30
Produce, distribute and syndicate video on the importance of restating the obvious.
1:30-2:00
Produce, distribute and syndicate video on the importance of restating the obvious in simplistic terms.
2:00-2:30
Produce, distribute and syndicate video on the importance of restating the obvious in simplistic terms while saying ‘fuck’ a lot.
2:30-3:00
Send out 29 tweets promoting aforementioned videos.
3:00-3:30
Consider trimming three-days’-growth of beard down to two-days, 23 hours and nine minutes.
3:30-4:00
Produce, distribute and syndicate video on trimming beard.
4:00-4:30
Send out 29 tweets promoting aforementioned videos.
4:30-5:00
Produce, distribute and syndicate video on the importance of high-quality content.
5:00-5:30
Produce, distribute and syndicate video on the importance of buying Apple stock in 1994.
5:30-6:00
Produce, distribute and syndicate video on the importance of investing in companies that aren’t yet in business.
6:00-6:30
Produce, distribute and syndicate video on how to crush and hustle your way to your father’s fortune. Mention selling baseball cards.
6:30-7:00
Send out 37 tweets promoting aforementioned videos.
7:00-7:04
Crush Dinner.
7:04-7:30
Consider chewing dinner.
7:30-8:00
Produce, distribute and syndicate video on the importance of eating a relaxed meal.
8:00-8:30
Produce, distribute and syndicate video about producing, distributing and syndicating videos about eating a relaxed meal.
8:30-9:00
Consider trimming three-days’-and-five-hours growth of beard down to two-days, 23 hours and 11 minutes.
9:00-9:30
Produce, distribute and syndicate video just saying ‘fuck.’
9:30-10:00
Produce, distribute and syndicate video about producing, distributing and syndicating videos just saying ‘fuck.’
10:00-10:30
Produce, distribute and syndicate video entirely in the 5th person.
10:30-11:00
Decide strategically how far to roll-up left sleeve.
11:00-11:30
Decide strategically how far to roll-up right sleeve.
11:30-12:00
Decide strategically how far to roll-up middle sleeve.