Archive for the 'Hall of Shame' Category
Sunday, March 3rd, 2013
How do we reverse the childhood obesity epidemic? Here’s the mind-blowing suggestion of the Ad Council, Michelle Obama, and their collaborators in the federal public health bureaucracy:
It takes world-historic chutzpah to go through with this gargantuan insult to both the audience and those who are actually serious about this major issue.
Once again, the corrupt childishness of the sponsored culture is breathtaking.
Wednesday, October 17th, 2012
As it recovers from locking out its employees and tries to stave off its players’ claims about its obvious extreme health dangers, the National Football League continues to exploit breast cancer to soften its image and increase the emotional habits and brand loyalties on which it trades.
Idoubtit, an excellent “skeptic” blogger and activist, has started a helpful thread on the topic.
The numbers involved are fascinating. The NFL has annual revenues of $9.5 billion, and yearly profits of $979 million. Business Insider reports:
According to the website, by purchasing pink items in the NFL Shop, fans can “support the fight against breast cancer with pink NFL breast cancer awareness gear.” Of course, there is a huge difference between supporting “awareness” and donating money to research. In the case of the former, most of the money ends up in the pockets of billionaire NFL owners.
When we contacted the NFL’s online shop for clarification, we were told 5% of the sales are being donated to the American Cancer Society. If the pink products have a typical 100% mark-up at retail, that means the NFL is keeping 90% of the profit from the sale of Breast Cancer Awareness gear.
And then consider that only 70.8% of money the ACS receives goes towards research and cancer programs. So, for every $100 in sales of pink gear, only $3.54 is going towards research while the NFL is keeping approximately $45 (based on 100% mark-up).
When the NFL wrote back to Business Insider to “clarify” the facts, it defended itself by saying it donates “approximately $1 million per year” to this cause it wants its fans to believe it seriously cares about.
“Approximately one million dollars,” however, is a mere one tenth of one percent of the NFL’s annual profits, and roughly one one-hundredth of one percent of its revenues.
Gosh, I wonder why they don’t brag about those numbers…
Tuesday, September 4th, 2012
By all reports, in Charlotte, Democratic
Marketing Syndicate Party delegates outnumber Occupiers by >10:1.
Stick a fork in it…
Thursday, April 12th, 2012
Our friend Nercules passes along this breathtaking piece of marketing tripe:
It is, of course, an attempt at flattery. That’s a classic marketing ploy. It also reveals that the Coca-Cola Company sees the entire population of Africa as mental children.
Meanwhile, one ponders which is more offensive: selling sugar-water to poor people, or a corporation based on selling sugar-water to poor people having a net income greater than the gross domestic product of 28 African nations.
Monday, March 19th, 2012
Here at TCT, we occasionally like to connect the expansion of the big business marketing universe to the names and faces pulling the levers, on the theory that they deserve some small proper credit for their sociopathy.
Today’s featured creep is Scott Goodson, pictured at left. Mr. Goodson is what I think of as a marketer of marketing. The M-o-M’s schtick is to exaggerate some small tweak to the long-established tricks of the trade and peddle it back to “the business community” as the next big thing.
Goodson’s version of this is so-called “Movement Marketing,” or the effort to make marketing campaigns look and feel like they are “uprisings” — Uprising is the title of Goodson’s new book — driven by ordinary people’s deepest passions and hopes for a better world. Mimicry of the frustrated spirit of the age, in other words.
Goodson, of course, always presents some window dressing about the authenticity of his scheme, suggesting that it is somehow a legitimate expression of “a shared passion to make a change for the better.”
That, however is just the cover story, as Goodson admits that “Movement Marketing” is indeed merely “just a clever way for a brand to get you [the customer] involved and ultimately buy their product.” The core idea is that:
[I]n these times, people will look to brands to be leaders and change agents. People will pay attention to how you conduct yourself, what you believe in, what you’re willing to take a stand on. If they like what they see, they’ll rally around your brand.
What does it mean in practice?
As described by one of Goodson’s associates, movement marketing accomplishes wondrous things like — wait for it — moving the tree pulp faster on behalf of Procter & Gamble:
There’s a new movement afoot, a new way for the world to do business. And it’s inspired, in part, by Pampers.
Yes, Pampers: the iconic American brand, the first mass-market disposable diapers, a product that many of you probably waddled around in in your earliest years. But by 1997, when Procter & Gamble asked me to oversee Pampers Europe, it had become the company’s poorest performer in terms of market share growth and profitability. My team eventually identified the problem: the brand was so focused on a single benefit of the product–dryness–that it was no longer resonating with the evolving needs of moms.
As I describe in my recent book, Grow, we traveled the globe to talk to mothers about their concerns, and eventually created a new brand ideal: Pampers didn’t just keep babies dry; rather, it was a product that would partner with parents throughout their baby’s stages of physical, social and emotional development. The result? We had a mission that inspired all of the brand’s stakeholders–marketing, sales, manufacturing, engineering and suppliers, as well as consumers–and the business that brought in $3.4 billion in 1997 is now a $9 billion business.
I was continually reminded of Pampers as I served as P&G’s Global Marketing Officer from 2001 to 2008, as I saw more and more that the brands that existed to improve peoples lives–to make them easier, more joyful or more interesting–were the brands that enjoyed the most success. And it wasn’t just broadcasting these ideals to the consumer that made it happen; true success only occurred when everyone involved in the brand shared and embraced the ideal. Was business growth ultimately driven by brands that are truly dedicated to fundamental human values?
Inspiring, deeply democratic stuff, isn’t it? Some yuppie-bespectacled jerks tricked some targets into telling them what they care about, and thereby learned to craft better, more resonant marketing hyperbole that sold more paper diapers for a Global 500 corporation.
Truly, we live in an Age of Miracles!
Thursday, March 8th, 2012
At left is Audrey Geisel, widow of Theodore Geisel, aka Dr. Seuss. Audrey’s latest use of her husband’s estate has been to authorize the NBCUniversal media conglomerate to make a movie out of Dr. Suess’s The Lorax book. The result is a film with over 70 product tie-in deals, including one for the Mazda CX5 SUV. The plot of the movie reduces the book’s ecological theme to a subplot in a tweenage romance. It also converts what little is left of the ecological message to a brain-dead melange of green capitalist cognitive dissonances and verbal pabulum. The SUV tied into the movie, for instance, is “Truffula Tree Certified — We Care an Awful Lot,” as if trees and cars are somehow tightly connected issues, and as if Ted Geisel would ever have committed a ham-tongued phrase like “we care an awful lot” to paper.
And what does Mrs. Seuss have to say for cashing in on this great steaming heap? “I’m not one to go commercial very easily.”
Yes, she only does it whenever they ask…