Friday, November 4, 2011


If you know how to read history, if you can see it as behaviors and movements rather than battles and dates, you can understand things about our species.

One of those things is that since the beginning of time, we have lived in hope of getting something for nothing. We as a species want desperately to believe in magic.

Whether it's manna from heaven.
Feeding the multitudes.
Gold from base metal.
Or endless energy that's "too cheap to meter," we have always looked for the deity or some other phantasm to deliver us a miracle.

Yesterday I had one of those death by a thousand cuts kind of day--the advertising version, that is, death by a dozen meetings.

Many of those meetings were about deliverance.

Delivering to the client oceans of ready customers through (barely watchable) syndicated events, conversations and content syndicated online.

Pass the elixir of love. I need a hug.

The second wisest man I've ever known once gave me a list 16 things I needed to do in a new, very senior job in order to succeed.

His 16th point was this: free advice is worth what you pay for it.

Today, whole agencies and huge legions of clients are structured to believe they can become the next Apple for free.

They can magically generate buzz, propagate conversations and drive people to stultifying websites that will bore viewers into passionate advocacy.

And they believe, thanks to the "freeness" and the ubiquity of digital media, that they can do this for the price of sand in the Sahara.

The truth, of course, is something else.

I've got history on my side.

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