Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Me and my meanders.

My day started early this morning, as it does so many days. I was up with the milkman, and in my dim memory, I heard the tingle clanking of old glass bottles as he made his rounds through a tilted neighborhood I lived in so many moons ago. 

I was up with the milkman, up with the farmers, up with Venus, the morning star, which shines bright in the sky before the sun chases it away.

I had work I had to do this morning, and starting around 7, I started pecking around my keyboard trying to find the right sequence of keys.

It would not be wrong for me to admit--unabashedly--that I believe I am in the communications business. And that most marketing problems can be solved--at least in part--with the proper application of the right message, repeated consistently. I won't go into politics this instant, but I believe that the 2016 election was won by Trump in large measure at least because his "Make America Great Again," was orders of magnitude stronger, clearer and more visceral than Clinton's anodyne and feckless "I'm with her."

So, I'm old-fashioned. I believe in messaging, and information, and, reasons why--both rational and emotional. I spent 90 minutes last night in front of the TV watching Ken Burns' and Lynn Novick's "Vietnam." It was a sad and enervating hour and a half, reminding me of the societal ruptures we as Americans have experienced and the lies propagated by corrupt generals and even more corrupt politicians, selling the notion that we could possibly win a war, after we had already lost the trust of the people the war most seminally affected.

It was real--the communication from the documentary. It told the story with clips, stills, music, and contemporary commentary. Even if you're not interested in this particular period of history, or any period of history, check out the series. Check out how smart people communicate a point of view to people they respect.

On a separate note, I got invited this morning to attend a panel discussion at Advertising Week, which is going on now in New York.

Here's a synopsis of what they are discussing. I've read the description six times and don't understand a word. 

We have a choice as communicators. We can be clear or we can bullshit. Clear leads to peace. Bullshit to more bullshit.

"This panel will explore how successful brands and disruptors are inverting the traditional approach and abandoning a
silo-ed team structure in favor of a data-driven approach to creativity to break down barriers to marketing success in the age of digital.

"In order to be more effective marketers, brands need to become better listeners. That means internalizing data-driven audience insights across teams, and letting these insights drive the creative process versus the classic “top down” approach of Creative Directors, which has ruled our industry for decades. Instead of retrofitting strategy to support creative, let data and insights lead creative."

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