Procter & Google

Interesting piece in the WSJ about P&G and Google swapping staff:

A New Odd Couple: Google, P&G Swap Workers to Spur Innovation
At Procter & Gamble Co., the corporate culture is so rigid, employees jokingly call themselves “Proctoids.” In contrast, Google Inc. staffers are urged to wander the halls on company-provided scooters and brainstorm on public whiteboards.

Now, this odd couple thinks they have something to gain from one another — so they’ve started swapping employees. So far, about two-dozen staffers from the two companies have spent weeks dipping into each other’s staff training programs and sitting in on meetings where business plans get hammered out. The initiative has drawn little notice.

p&g

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Social Media: Waste of Time, Waste of Money, Kills Campaigns?

… just a few things that came up today …

social-media-waste-of-time

Is Social Media Marketing A Waste Of Time?
Well, someone thinks so: “Social media is the next big thing! No, it’s the big thing! It is here, now, and it is big! Let’s face it, if you’re not aboard the cluetrain to social media marketing city, you’re sitting on that station alone!”

P&G’s McConnell Not Sure Marketers Belong on Social Networks
Ted McConnell, general manager-interactive marketing and innovation at Procter & Gamble Co., said social networks may never become a natural advertising medium — in part because the content on social nets and what is in general characterized as user-generated media may not be media at all. In a talk at the Digital Non-Conference in Cincinnati, McConnell said: “Media is something you can buy and sell. Media contains inventory. Media contains blank spaces. Consumers weren’t trying to generate media. They were trying to talk to somebody.”

How Twittering Critics Brought Down Motrin Mom Campaign
Johnson & Johnson did manage to offend some mothers with an online and print campaign for Motrin that implied moms carry their babies as fashion accessories. But was it a genuine groundswell that felled the effort — or an alliance of the few, empowered by microblogging service Twitter? Two days after a new ad push for Motrin triggered an online backlash, J&J’s McNeil Consumer Healthcare unit is pulling the campaign, from the New York office of independent shop Taxi, and begging a vocal mommy-blogging nation for forgiveness. The campaign, which was featured on Motrin’s website, as well as in several magazines, was an attempt to connect with moms through the common experience (and pain) of carrying a child. But the implication felt by some of the campaign’s more vocal critics was that moms wear their babies as fashion accessories, or because it “totally makes me look like an official mom.”

Pain reliever Motrin recently sparked a firestorm of controversy over an advertisement which attempted to be humorous, sympathetic and perhaps edgy but ended up insulting the very consumer group they were targeting. The offending video portrayed the practice of carrying a baby in a sling as an uncomfortable fashion statement, something that makes a mother look more “official”. The ad copy also implies that such baby carrying causes back and neck pain – which Motrin will help alleviate.This point of view did not sit well with the “baby wearing” mothers of the internet. Over the weekend, Twitter exploded with negative commentary and blog posts racked up attacking the ad. In their defense, Motrin acted quickly and took down the video, but the damage may already be done.
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Snippets: Cheap Cigs, Web 2.d’Oh, Robotgalaxy, How ’bout dem Apple Apples?

Financial Crisis Spurs Smoking Increase and Switch to Cheaper Brands
More than three-quarters (77%) of current smokers in the US report that they have increased stress levels because of the economic crisis, and two-thirds of those smokers say this stress has had an effect on their smoking behavior, according to a survey from the American Legacy Foundation, conducted by Harris Interactive. The data indicates that stress over the economy is causing some smokers to delay attempts to quit, increase the number of cigarettes they are smoking, and/or switch to a less-expensive brand instead of quitting. In addition, the survey found that seven percent of stressed-out smokers who had quit are now smoking again, while nine percent of former smokers said the financial situation had tempted them to start smoking again.

cheap-cigs

Sprint’s out with a new site to promote their mobile broadband product. They attempt to show users how awesome the web is by doing their best to shoehorn every time-sucking thing on the web into one page.
sprint
Brothers who have endured endless hours waiting while their sisters shop happily at the American Girl Store will soon have their revenge: with the launch of ROBOTGALAXY’s personalized robots, boys will also get to engage in the interactive shopping experience.
robotgalaxy
A Japanese super-fan has grown Apple-branded Fuji apples by adhering stickers to the still-ripening fruits a month before picking. Apple has yet to comment about the unofficially-logo’d Fuji’s, but we doubt they will. That is, unless they don’t taste good. (Or constantly crash.)
apple-apples
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Social Media: Dido, Elf Yourself

Flogging a dead horse? Well I guess that means its working … now with bigger logo! (It works for Macs now, which is nice …) I assume this is the annual seasonal offering from Anne Bologna’s and Ari Merkin‘s Toy New York.
anne-bologna-ari-merkin1
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Marketing: CMO’s Must Evolve, BBH Zags

Study:CMOs Must Evolve to Meet New Marketing Challenges
The growing popularity of interactive tools such as wikis, blogs and social networks is giving customers the ability to engage with firms as never before, and global marketers need to put customers at the center of their operations to respond to this new and challenging reality, according to an study of global CMOs conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit and sponsored by Google.
The report, “Future Tense: The Global CMO” (pdf), finds marketers are increasingly able to reach out to consumers at all points along the value chain, not just at the moment a purchase decision is made. Because of this, global marketing of the future must engage all corporate stakeholders with consistent, constant and accurate messaging. At the same time, it must encourage and be able to respond quickly to customer feedback and involvement, pulling stakeholders closer to the corporate brand.

fat_businessman_ac_by_mojette
While Everyone Else in Adland Zigs, BBH apparently Zags
As the economic downturn worsens and agencies cut costs, Bartle Bogle Hegarty is doing something different: diversifying into products such as vegetarian meals and personal alarms. Through Zag, the agency’s brand-invention company, BBH’s London office is creating its own brands and bringing them to market with joint-venture partners. The idea is to identify “brand lag” — areas where consumers are active but there are few brands. Zag launched in 2006, headed up by former Unilever executive Neil Munn, and its first U.K. brands are launching just in time to bolster the agency’s growth. The agency recently opened a Zag office in New York.

bbh-zag

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Marketing’s Utopia

Interesting snippet from Dave Nottoli that resonated with me. “The image industry splits broadly into two sectors: the Utopian (advertising + Hollywood) and the Dystopian (media + Hollywood).”

Commerce (and i guess therefore marketing) produces utopia. Their line is: “There will be a future. It will be good. You will be there.”

Newsmakers produce violent dystopia. Their line: “If there is a future, it will be violent and brutish and you will be there.”

buckminster fuller

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Social Media: Digital Drag Race

Digital Designers Face Off in Intel’s Digital Drag Race
Intel has decided to dip its toes into social media, with Digital Drag Race, a competition which pits professional digital designers against one another mixed with a consumer-generated aspect for non-professionals. The campaign was created at Razorfish San Francisco, by Creative Directors Adam Connelly and Kate McCagg.

digital-drag-race

Launching November 17 a collection of professional designers will spend 70 minutes on a computer powered by the brand new Intel Core i7 Extreme Edition Processor using Abobe Creative Suite 4 to create a 17 second motion graphic using supplied assets; video, music, vector images. The content of the videos are to center on the themes of power, speed and innovation.

adam-connelly

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