December 10, 2006
Do you think that people reach their limits when it comes to looking at advertising, and anything over those limits has a negative effect? My theory is that people don't object to advertising when it appears in places they are accustomed to seeing it but they resent ads when they intrude on their private spaces.
November 26, 2006
It doesn't matter if China and India surpass us in producing what "The World Is Flat" author Thomas L. Friedman calls "low-cost labor and high-cost technology." What we are most adept at is building strong brands in greater numbers than anybody else. But we also have the capacity for citizens to buy those brands in greater numbers than anybody else.
November 12, 2006
October 29, 2006
The last line in General Motors' TV commercial on its new 100,000-mile warranty caught my attention: "The best coverage in America from the biggest brand in America." Is GM now a brand? Does GM think that its various car brands need a lift from the mother ship? And is GM -- the company -- in any position to help out?
October 15, 2006
Here's a question that came to mind as I sat through the recent Association of National Advertisers' confab in Orlando: With all this talk about consumers taking control of brands, how do you get control back again if you decide to change direction? Or once you open the gates, is your brand's destiny out of your hands forever?
October 01, 2006
The big problem with the U.S. health-care system is that there are few incentives for keeping people healthy. Doctors get paid for finding out you're sick; hospitals get paid for letting you in their beds and conducting tests on their expensive diagnostic machinery; surgeons get paid for operating on you; drug companies get paid for selling you their pills. Nobody gets paid if you stay healthy.
September 17, 2006
We flew into Prague eager to "Czech it out" as the T-shirts there invited, and we found the citizens of this normally tranquil Eastern European capital ready to storm the barricades. Causing the uproar wasn't age-old tensions with Hungary or Austria, but a promotional event staged by Louis Vuitton for Madonna as part of her European tour.
September 03, 2006
In 1960, the year I graduated from college, the late Ted Levitt published an article in the Harvard Business Review titled "Marketing Myopia." In it, he criticized U.S. companies for taking an overly narrow view of the businesses they were really in. Most famously, he argued that railroads had lost out to other movers of people and goods because they perceived themselves to be in the business of running trains rather than in what they really did -- providing transportation in whatever form customers wanted.
August 20, 2006
I wish BP still believed it was in the oil business. If it did, maybe it would have paid a little more attention to its pipeline. But the company was way out there, beyond petroleum, and I guess the oil business just wasn't cutting-edge enough to warrant its attention.
August 11, 2006
The New York Times Co. says it will reduce the width of its flagship newspaper by one-and-a-half inches, resulting in a 5% decrease in its news space. I have an idea how to get back some of that space: Do away with those tortured explanations of anonymous sources.
July 23, 2006
There are a lot of reasons the proposed alliance involving General Motors, Renault and Nissan won't work. But the real one probably won't be mentioned.
July 09, 2006
The ad industry has difficulty recruiting young talent, and Eugene Morris, head of E. Morris Communications in Chicago agency, said that's "particularly acute" with blacks. Blacks as a rule don't have the same connections as white people, and so they don't go looking for an agency job. "The guy living next door to you, or your uncle, doesn't work at an ad agency, so it makes it much more difficult for African-Americans to think of a career in advertising," he said."
June 26, 2006
I should have known Enron was ready to implode back in October 2000, when an Enron media-services VP announced it's plans to sell media futures, just like the company sold electricity to California. As we said then: "Enron is starting out in the spot-TV market, but eventually plans to move to other media platforms, including print and the intern...
June 11, 2006
Al Ries, the positioning and marketing whiz who writes a column for AdAge.com, talks to marketing people all over the world, and he says he doesn't find anybody who is confident about putting their money into the Internet. "Everybody is doing it, but they don't feel confident it's going to produce results."
May 28, 2006
Sometimes I think that if and when traditional media succumb to blogs and the other manifestations of cyberspace, it won't be because they are faster or more convenient. It will be because the old media is so arrogant and self-righteous.
May 14, 2006
The new dean of Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, John Lavine, believes that both journalism and advertising need to learn from each other in this new landscape of digital media. "The challenge will be to engage increasingly elusive audiences who, in real time, rapidly form and deteriorate. Yet without a motivated, connected audience neither a free press nor marketing will survive," he told members of Medill's board of advisors
April 17, 2006
What motivated Euro RSCG's Ron Berger, the outgoing chairman of the American Association of Advertising Agencies, to pick a fight with a fellow agency executive at its annual conference in Scottsdale?
April 03, 2006
Commentary by Rance Crain
Thereís an old saying that you donít pick a fight with the man who buys ink by the barrel, and itís not my intention to do so here. But I am very uneasy when one person has the power and authority to make political and inflammatory remarks at an ad forum, and then to have control of the medium where itís disseminated.
March 23, 2006
DUBAI (AdAge.com) -- They say that 15% of the world's cranes are here in Dubai, helping to erect high-rise after high-rise in the most spectacular orgy of building I've ever seen. I was just one more Crain trying to figure out who would live and work in all those buildings.