Wednesday, April 21, 2004

Blog Me Flog Me Make Me Write Bad Checks
Hey, thanks for signing up to receive my blog on a regular basis. Quite a vote of confidence, given how uniformly boring and tame my first few entries have been. Complaints have been issued from some quarters who are more used to my incendiary, obscene, Pigbitch S. Thompson style of journalism and less used to my informative, sincere, public-has-a-right to know mode. How to reconcile them? No fucking idea...

National Thought for the Day: Better Marketing for the Good Guys
You're going to have to get used to this now if you're going to be one of my readers--I have rants. One of my rants is what I call "Jif peanut butter marketing."

When Madison Avenue has to sell an inferior product, one of its tricks is to advertise the product using its weakest, not strongest, attribute. If this is the first you are hearing about this, you'll now notice it everywhere you go.

The most obvious examples are junk food sold for their healthful properties. How do they sell Jif Peanut Butter? "Choosy moms choose Jif." If you're choosy, no way would you choose the peanut butter that contains way more salt and sugar than real peanut butter, which is just ground-up peanuts. Same with Kool-Aid or Hi-C--crap in a can--"filled with vitamin C" or of course the recent KFC marketing of fried chicken as health food.

Think fast: what's the worst thing about HMOs? Limited choice of doctor, poor quality of care. Everywhere you'll see billboards selling HMOs on choice of doctor and quality of care. Citibank sells you credit cards by making fun of identity theft (to see how Consumer Federation of California makes fun of Citibank go to these hilarious spoofs: CFC Spoofs)

The important issues have so much going for them, that's why the good guys always hype "we're for clean environment, jobs that pay a living wage, affordable housing." But what if that's not the right approach? What if we need to start marketing like Madison Avenue to get people back to our side?

"Be Progressive, do it for the fringe benefits."
"Uncle Sam does it quicker, better and cheaper."
"Pay your taxes, America needs the money more than you do."

On a closely related topic, read How the Democrats Were Betamaxed telling how Republicans have "betamaxed" the American public into buying Republicans, a weaker product, instead of Democrats, the product that more meets their stated needs.

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