at the intersection of brands, media and culture

Archive for May, 2008|Monthly archive page

Automotive Monogamy

In Consumers, trends on May 29, 2008 at 11:10 am

As a firm believer in the anti-trend and a photography lover, I’m drawn to the photographic project of aptly named Matteo Ferrari. In an age when consumer goods are often renewed as frequently as the sweater box is brought out from under the bed, it’s great to see the faces of those drivers who have stuck with their car over the years. What other product categories have fostered such loyalty and become such a definitive and emotional part of the users identity?  Watches, jewelry, furniture perhaps…but the list isn’t long.

hat tip to new favorite CupOfJoe

Fake Out: Fake Handbag Sales in China

In Uncategorized on May 28, 2008 at 5:23 pm

Fake Out

Originally uploaded by distillerymedia

Shot this quick video when I was in Shanghai doing some client research. As a consultant who is frequently asked to work on luxury brands, I’m often reminded of how easily that exclusivity can be broken by fakes. Luckily quality is still a differentiator between most look-a-likes and the real thing but A-class fakes and brands that are more logo driven (v. quality) are harder to discern…

Illustrations + Posters = Things I like

In Uncategorized on May 28, 2008 at 2:40 pm


Originally uploaded by distillerymedia

From the top of del.ici.ous to the top of my blog in seconds flat. Design Reviver has posted some great and inspiring poster designs from the ages. I particularly like this one with its curves, muted tones and rhetorical question: “what is graphic design.”

more here.

Côte d’Ivoire, Undercover

In market research, photo, Uncategorized on May 28, 2008 at 2:17 pm

_DSC8399 copy

Originally uploaded by distillerymedia

Earlier this year I went to the Ivory Coast for a large packaged goods client to look at the meaning(s) of ethics. It was challenging for a multitude of reasons (paused civil war, language barrier, stomach virus) but ultimately a rewarding look at how the ethical behavior of large multinationals can (positively and negatively) affect the lives of the people on the ground. Lots of concepts came out of this research that have the potential to affect everything from how aid is given to how aid is communicated to the global audience in a meaningful way. We’ll see what happens but here are a few of the images from that trip…

photostream here.

(side note: I wish smugmug and wordpress would get along better)

First Bags and Now Antlers

In Uncategorized on May 24, 2008 at 6:33 am

Straight Cut Antlers

Originally uploaded by tommy forbes

Frontier Airlines announced on Friday that it will raise the cost for passengers flying with antlers from $75 to $100. Apparently this is a real issue. No word yet on what the charge will be if you just have really big ears.

More information for the afflicted here.

Apple gets serious about marketing

In Brands, Consumers, marketing, strategy, Uncategorized on May 23, 2008 at 11:38 am

Deep in my bi-coatiality I went to the Apple Store in SoHo yesterday to pick up a base station. (Yes, I know there are cheaper routers but this one looks cool!) My surprise came when the checkout girl asked if it would be ok if they e-mailed me my receipt.

First thought: ok, I’m environmentally friendly, sounds like a good company policy, why don’t more companies do this?

Second thought: HOLY COW, now Apple can track my purchases to an email address, know how long its been since I purchased something, and cheaply and easily send me coupons and incentives to upgrade, buy adjacent products and deeper entrench myself in MacFandom.

I’m not sure how many consumer brands could get away with this. I wouldn’t give most companies my email address but Apple, sneaky little devil, of course you can have it. Now get to sending me coupons for the iPhone. I’ve gotten over my aversion and now I think they are pretty cool.

One Laptop Per Child – V2

In strategy, trends, Uncategorized on May 23, 2008 at 10:33 am

Beautiful new prototype for the OLPC XO-2 was released recently. Designed by Yves Behar, it gets my heart all aflutter with its dual touch screens, vertical, horizontal or dual user options. I fantasize about it being a super cool little notebook, Kindle and PSP all in one. I know, I know, it’s for the kids but…I want one anyway. Buy one, give one to return shortly as well.

hat tip to Contagious and LapTopMag

Just in Time for the Election…

In Uncategorized on May 22, 2008 at 8:24 am

…or for the relaunch of Vista, or for your local Mitsubishi dealership. I’m just saying, next time you are contemplating a purchase that you know you probably shouldn’t make, don’t drink the water.

“Researchers in Switzerland theorized that people playing social trust games might change their behaviors if given doses of oxytocin, since the chemical might artificially enhance their willingness to trust someone. Indeed, they were right: subjects dosed with Oxytocin were willing to trust people even after they’d been explicitly told that those people had behaved in untrustworthy ways in the past. People who had not been dosed did not trust the “untrustworthy” people.”

hat tip to reader Jeffluence

Because Sometimes You Need a Drink

In Branding, Brands, communications, Consumers, marketing, strategy, trends, Uncategorized on May 22, 2008 at 7:59 am


Originally uploaded by distillerymedia

Growing up in Ohio I remember how the first day of hunting season would clear out a classroom. All the same kids who complained about an 8am school bell were suddenly out in the woods at 5am. I, predictably, would be in class.

Well, my guess is that those same schoolmates are sending out a rousing ‘hell yeah’ in response to Miller’s decision to issue camo-cans this year. You think it is a little extreme? Hunters have been known to cover their bodies in imitation deer piss so as not to be given away by their scent. That’s a little extreme. This makes total sense.

hat tip to adfreak and plaid

On the Spot: Start Doing a Marketplace Audit PLEASE

In advertising, Branding, Brands, communications, marketing, strategy on May 21, 2008 at 9:19 am

All apologies, I’ve been a bit busy with some big changes that I’ll fill you in on later along with new original content. In the meanwhile, I’m still being surprised by commercials that look almost identical to others in the market. So much so that you could simply super on a logo and voice over to have the same spot. I know that it’s becoming at bit like ‘you thought we wouldn’t notice‘ around here but new, distilled content is coming soon. Promise.

The new offender is BNP Paribas as seen on CNN during the election coverage last night.

and the original, very creative ad by The Ladders