Crib World

I think it was on "Sex and the City" (and don't leave me here just because you hate the show, I have a point) where Miranda was complaining about a place called "Crib World." She said she wanted a store called something like, "this is the crib for you."

I think I'm starting to believe that for every purchase. I am so tired of researching what I should buy. Forums, blogs, manufacturers pages, talking to friends - it's exhausting. And all the while, there's this thought in the back of my head that I know I'm going to get it wrong.

If you're a lady, you probably remember those sliding bar questionnaires they used to have (maybe still have) at Clinique. You had to match up things like what tone your skin was, did you have freckles, did you tan or burn? Then you were dubbed a skin "type" and the right products were immediately clear. What happened to little quizzes like that? Still in the Cosmopolitan Magazine? I think I saw one on a stroller site once when I was shopping for ideas for my nephew. They really are helpful.

There are things like Pricegrabber if you know the product you want and you just need the best deal, but what comes before that? Just because something has five stars on Amazon doesn't mean I'd give it five stars, too. My circumstances are unique, darn it.

Thus far, I've got the wrong red hoodie and the wrong camera memory card, at least one of which will make it to craigslist very soon. Maybe the title of my posting will be, "This is the camera memory card for you." I think it would work.


The Great American Attempt

I started writing an ultra-ambitious project last night. It's supposed to turn into a novel, but I face several obstacles. (This would not be Fail 1 either.) The first is just shiny things. I lose my focus to Rock Band 2 or my DVR. The second is organization and purpose.

I said awhile ago in another entry that you needed to know the ending of your story before you started. I feel like I know the landmarks along the way, but the ending is a little fuzzy. That worries me.

A lot of people say you just have to sit down and make yourself write. What I'm doing now is writing down the landmarks. It feels like barfing on the page. After that or along the way somewhere, I hope it'll become clear how to organize them and tie them all together. And of course, I hope I'll see an obvious ending.

I do this when I'm writing ads sometimes too. I take everything that needs to be in the ad, write it down and then organize it into a coherent piece. Sometimes I can piece it together with copy and paste and a few words here and there. Sometimes I have to write from scratch and just use my notes as guidance. Depends on the style of writing.

I really felt like I went into the writing zone last night, an emotion I haven't felt towards a non-advertising piece in awhile. It was nice.

On an unrelated note, I also started training my cat to walk on a leash. Apparently, I have several ultra-ambitious goals.


Mass Mentality

One thing that depressing me about a lot of advertising is appealing to the middle ground. It's like the more people you can get to approve your brand, the better. In reality, shouldn't a brand appeal only to a specific target? Isn't the target actually a part of the brand itself?

Sure, some brands are actually suited for the Bible Belt, don't-change-anything, soccer moms out there. But not every brand has to appeal to them. And honestly, if that's your target, your brand is going to be wishy-washy and just generally appeasing. It's not going to be a concept so much as a creative compromise.

When you have a brand that appeals to a certain type of people, they really do become part of the brand. They're like mascots. See the Mac guy for a really straight-forward example.

I guess every copywriter wishes they could do only niche marketing that appeals to hipsters or musicians. But there's got to be a mix. How else would we appreciate it?


Is all hope lost?

February is a draining month. It's the last of winter and even though it's the shortest month, it seems to slide by like molasses would in this kind of weather.

It's easy to get bogged down in February, to lose the hopeful, bright outlook you had at the beginning of the new year. I wonder how many resolutions make it to the end of this month? I know my Wii Fit has been looking sad and lonely for a few weeks now.

I also wonder if Obama is suffering from the drag down. People are letting their faith slip. Would it be easier to forgive things like accidentally picking semi-crooked cabinet members in a warmer, happier month?

More importantly, as it is impossible to change the weather, how do we fix this from a marketing standpoint? I think Obama should have devoted more to after-campaign campaigning. We still need his snappy advertising to stay focused. Anyone would tell you that the user experience doesn't stop at purchase (or vote.) You have to fulfill that brand promise over and over again.

It's not enough to make a speech. We're too media saturated. Obama needs to put on a show, do the dance, be himself. Fulfill that promise he made and stop acting like he thinks he's supposed to. Stop letting the suits run the show and keep the hope alive.

(On a side note, you'll notice in an earlier posting that I had added a Twitter feed to my blog. I decided it wasn't worth it. Too many @blahblahblahs without the context. Though I am still Twittering. I'm an addict, which I could have predicted.)


New work on the site.

I haven't blogged in a long time. Sorry about that.

But there is new work on my portfolio site.

Be sure to check out Inai Inai Ba! and Girls Just Wanna Have Fun. Also, there is new photography in A Tasteful Affair.