I should note that some readers speculated about what their
lives would be like in a buzzword-free world. Like Jeffrey Makowka
tweeted, "This would eliminate about 80% of the vocab in most of my
meetings." Given that Jeffrey's title at AARP, per LinkedIn, is
Senior Strategic Advisor, Thought Leadership, well, I believe him!
(Coincidentally, I've been lobbying Ad Age to change my title from
Media Guy to Senior Executive Evangelist, Echo Chamber.)
Meanwhile, Jafet Ramirez of Atlanta posted a comment on
AdAge.com that read, "Sorry, Media Guy, but if I don't use those
basic statements, it will be impossible to leverage my
out-of-the-box thinking to engage our brand's stakeholders."
I'm afraid that Jeffrey may soon be struck entirely mute, and
Jafet may have to leverage his thinking back into the box,
because the people have spoken, and they want more buzzwords and
phrases put on death row. To wit:
"Please add any form of transformative to the list,"
William Mount of Charlestown, Mass., wrote in a comment on
AdAge.com. "It's often seen in conjunction with some form of
disruptive and must also be banished."
I dunno, William, banning transformative sounds like it could be
sort of transformational. Are you sure you want to be that
KayAnn P. Schoeneman (@KSchoeneman),
VP-global research at Ketchum, tweeted, "Let's add impactful, too."
"Also, any form of transparent/transparency," William
"Transformative" Mount added in a second comment on AdAge.com.
"That makes me want to break things."
I feel you, William. When companies insist that they're being
transparent, I tend to think, Yeah, because I can see right
through your bullshit.
A reader who calls himself Old Ad Guy of Bloomfield Hills, Mich.,
nominated handcrafted for the Kill List via a post on
AdAge.com. And then right below that, reader Bill Sanders of Los
Angeles added, "Yes, I was just about to add craft, used
in any form. If I was asked to 'craft' one more blog ..." He
trailed off without explaining what would happen if he were asked
to craft another blog, but I'm picturing him breaking things like
William "Transparent" Mount.
In the interest of full transparency, I want to note here that I
don't craft columns and blog posts, I crap them out
(although Ad Age's copy department would prefer that I use either
excrete or extrude -- because, you know, Ad Age
is a family publication and all).
I was inspired to include on steroids not by a reader, but
by a certain marketing publication that last Wednesday published a
post with a headline describing a big brand's summer ad campaign as
"content marketing on steroids." That made me wonder why anyone
would want content marketing with bacne, anger-management issues
and testicles that have shrunk to the size of raisins.
This inclusion was inspired by a
video interview with graphic designer Stefan Sagmeister that's
gone viral in the past couple of weeks. It was posted on Vimeo by
Innovation, Technology, Creativity), a Toronto company that
produces events for the design-tech community. All it is is
Sagmeister ranting about what he calls "the storytelling thing."
Here's an excerpt: "I think that all the storytellers are not
storytellers. Like, recently I read an interview with somebody who
designs rollercoasters and he referred to himself as a storyteller.
No, fuckhead! You are not a storyteller, you are a
rollercoaster-designer! And that's fantastic! And more power to
He goes on from there in a similarly cranky, foulmouthed way,
but what really clinches the video for me is that at the end FITC's
logo appears next to that of the video's co-producer, Ottawa-based
Crafted Stories, and its
tagline: "Brand Storytelling."
Hey, I've got a story for Old Ad Guy and Bill Sanders: In
Canada, the marketing stories aren't just created, they're
Probably by hand!
In a really impactful way!
Canada being Canada, though, if there are any drugs involved,
I'm thinking pot, not steroids.
Simon Dumenco is the "Media Guy" columnist for Advertising
Age. You can follow him on Twitter @simondumenco.