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November 22, 2004

Seth Godin on Brands

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Posted by Stowe Boyd

Seth Godin
[from A Little Like Francisco Franco]

The number of new micro-brands is exploding. [...] If we define brand as a shortcut for a set of commercial attributes, emotions, stories, whatever, then any blogger with a following has a brand.


Doc Searls and company would have us believe that markets are conversations. This is a great conversation-starter and a useful piece of agit-prop. But the reality is that many many brands are actually monologues, not dialogues. That doesn't mean a conversation won't create a better, more robust, more useful brand. But, alas, most organizations can't handle that truth. So they do their best to do it the old way.

I said sometime last year (see here) that brands are no longer promises, as the conventional wisdom has held for so long; they are now invitations. This means that successful brands will engage markets in rich and complex dialogue, and those that don't will fail or falter.

It is true that many companies will continue on doing what makes them comfortable, even if it is ineffective. As Eric Bonabeau once said, in a very different context, ""Managers would rather live with a problem they can't solve than with a solution they don't fully understand or control."

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November 3, 2004

The Neverending Story: Marc's Heresy V

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Posted by Stowe Boyd

Jason Calcanis posted a piece yesterday which is the outgrowth of an ongoing, email back channel discussion arising from Mark Canter's Heresy (see Marc's Heresy, II, III, and IV). I hate to say it, but I almost agree with Jason:

Jason Calcanis
[from More on bloggers trying to justify selling out - The Jason Calacanis Weblog -]

No one is saying running advertising makes you a whore. Boingboing added traditional advertising units that are clearly labeled. I think that is great and I’m psyched that the hard-working team over there is covering their costs and getting paid for putting together a very unique product.

What we’re saying is that if you mix advertising into your editorial, and have the writers getting paid to promote products, you are a whore.

There is a line, and we shouldn't cross it. "Whore" may be a bit strong, but I agree with Jason's perspective.

Comments (0) | Category: Opinions