Friday, February 26, 2010

Life Is a Snowball Fight

The 2009 Blizzard Snowball Fight in Times Squares, as captured in breath-taking photographs by Doug Kim -- and as critiqued by the masses -- demonstrates a lot about human beings. From the some 183 comments posted as of Christmas Day, emerged 15 archetypes. Marketing Brillo can’t prove it, but the guess is that these archetypes emerge in the midst of every human endeavor, in every culture, nation, and tribe.

Consider the following 15 archetypes, along with a snippet of their representative quotes. What say you?

1. The Enthusiast. "Fabulous pictures of a fabulous event! We are all kids at heart and the photographer has captured that nicely."

2. The Mystic. "This makes me believe even more that nothing is accidental, Doug – you were supposed to be there with your camera at that exact moment ..."

3. The Hater. “GOD” has nothing to do with this or anything else. Get a life. Just a bunch of people having a good time. Why do you Jesus lovers always have to ruin everything by bringing god and religion into it??????"

4. The Art Critic. "I was not greatly impressed with your photos. Very few faces or expressions. The majority of pictures are hooded faceless mannequins in frozen tossing mode. I would have liked to have seen more expression of individuals . You did a few but not enough in this display. The sepia effect (no real zones) made the snow look dirty and the scene muted). I understand the circumstances were difficult but..." yada yada yada yada...

5. The Visionary. "Great photos! The absence of traffic and snow covered street make the scene look it was from another century. The space looks so human-sized and reminds me of paintings, Breugel, the Dutch artist did of villagers playing in the snow in the 16th century. I hope it was as fun for everyone as it looks. Did people choose sides? Was it a free for all? Was there a feeling of community? How did it end?"

6. The Peacemaker. "Nice pics and what a fun event. Pay no attention to Jim. Since you did check out his work, you can clearly see his skill level stops at the disposal camera buy-in level. I like what you did there."

7. The Politician. "Bloomberg’s notion of closing down part of Times Square to traffic doesn’t look so dumb after all."

8. The Joiner. "Hey! great photos! There’s a Facebook group for it now: The Times Square Snowball Fight of 2009."

9. The Cynic. "at least the cops did not break this snow ball fun up with their guns drawn!"

10. The High Priest. "If only for a moment humanity sheads the cloak of idiocy that is adulthood and exposes the elemental heart of the playful and innocent child that exists at the core of us all. Behold, if only for a moment, heaven existed in Times Square."

11. The Tribalist. "OHHHHH! THIS IS MY HOMETOWN! THIS is what I loved about NY. Food parties during blackouts, people helping people during crises…bigass impromptu snowball fights with total strangers!!!"


13. The Pornographer. "that was not a fucking blizzard you pussies. thats like a light covering"

14. The Observer. "I couldn’t help but notice that the guy a the bottom of the pile in the last photo appears to be wearing hockey skates. Is there a rink in Times Square somewhere?"

15. The Insider. OMG– I’m so happy you posted these.. I was there and got to experience it. This is one moment I will never forget. We had so much fun. It was my first trip to NY too! Amazing!"

It takes all kinds ... and that's the bad news.

-- scrubbed by Marketing Brillo

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Is this the moment for Charitable PR that gives back to US?

By many accounts, advertising is washed up, in the toilet, a lost enterprise, wasted -- and good riddance. If you want the statistics, you’ll find some in this slideshare presentation from FutureLab ... or, if you just want to attend the funeral of traditional advertising, watch this sentimental video.

Does any of this explain why a lot of consumers -- and even some industry observers, past and current, here -- or here -- or here -- believe that the trillions spent on advertising every year is wasted? Maybe. And maybe it's time for somebody to take a risk, gamble, and win big. For instance ...

Suppose the companies that have the millions and billions gave the dough away to something people care about. We might call this gesture Charity Begins at Home PR.

What would happen if -- instead of spending $4 million in advertising, a company donated $4 million in health care benefits to its employees? How much free TV and print space might that earn? Might it be more coverage than they could ever buy for the same price?

Suppose some of us quit advertising and quit out-sourcing -- and then set aside the $20 million saved to hire people in the community to do the jobs being shipped overseas? ... Or what if we took that $30 million and built an eco-friendly factory in the U.S.?

Just wondering how far that measure of commonsense and exemplary behavior might get us. Wish I had the money to test it.

-- scrubbed by Marketing Brillo