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Monthly archives "December 2012"

The Ultimate New Year’s Resolution

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2013Do not put off until tomorrow what you can do today. Growing up, this is something I have heard time and again from my parents. You may have heard it yourself, but if not listen up.

Whether you would like to think it or not our days on Earth are limited. The only thing that will allow us to maximize the amount of time we spend at work, at home, at the gym, or at life in general depends on our internal self-motivation. Think about what your goals are in life. Every year, in preparation for New Year’s Day, we hear people claiming they will get out of debt, strive for a promotion, be nicer to others, or the infamous lose weight. What are you doing this very moment to get closer to that goal?

Actionable Goals

The key is to take steps to move forward and set yourself actionable goals. Personally, I set an actionable goal that I would grow my company’s social media accounts and the hits to our website by 100% in 2012. I spent the entire year working towards it and making little steps forward. I can proudly say I have now surpassed that goal.

An actionable goal is one that can be met, is measurable and has a time frame associated with it. Losing weight, for example, is not an actionable goal. An actionable goal for losing weight would read something like this: To lose 10 pounds by June 2013 in time for my best friend’s wedding. Set. Work. Achieve. Set again.

Move Forward

Moving forward is the key point. If you want to lose weight you may have to get up an hour earlier and work out before work. If you want to become a better public speaker a wise first step would be going to the web-site of your local Toastmasters club. If you are working towards a promotion at work you may not be able to clock-in at 9 and clock-out at 5 every day. Whatever the case may be, it takes creativity and a passion for making yourself better to succeed. If you sit idle and wait for something to happen to you, it probably will not.

Personally  Productive

Consider the level of personal productivity if things were not put off. Say you get a request at 4:45 and figure it can wait until the morning. Then morning comes and you have 3 more requests that came overnight that all need to be resolved today. Now you have made it more difficult on yourself. You could have stayed an extra hour, if that, and finished the task last night, but now since you are so swamped you will have to stay considerably longer today. It is a never-ending process unless you stay motivated.

Internal motivation is not easy. It is ingrained in some people more than others. However, once results start coming through it is easier and easier to continue the motivational trend.

So what is the ultimate New Year’s resolution? Do not put off until tomorrow what you can do today. That is my resolution. What is yours?

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This is Kaizen for your goals – continuous improvement.

Kaizen is about continuous improvement. Japanese automakers used this process to improve processes created by American automakers to steal market share. Now I have created a series entitled Kaizen for Your Goals. It’s about continually improving yourself to make your goals a reality quicker and more effectively. Small steps now = big results later.

Dear Santa, Traditional Branding Works

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santaChange or die. You hear it often. Change is something people have come to expect in most aspects of their life. Brands are constantly changing and for a number of them they should be. There are a few things that never change, such as the taste of Coke (although they tried), the feel of cotton, and Santa.

Why don’t they change? Why hasn’t Santa been updated to a soy milk drinking vegan under 200 lbs and stripped of the red suit? There are many reasons. The Santa we know today can be mainly attributed to illustrator Thomas Nast. He first illustrated Santa Claus in Harper’s Weekly in 1862 during the Civil War. In total, Nast created 76 published engravings of our beloved Santa. Now you may or may not know, but Santa’s first appearance in advertising was not the popular Coca-Cola campaign that started in the 1930s.

Santa’s first appearance in advertising came by way of the White Rock Beverages in Waukesha, Wisconsin in 1915. Haddon Sundblom continued on the same jolly old Santa trend with his Coca-Cola advertisements from the 1930s through the 1950s. Today, Santa is portrayed exactly the same as he was 150 years ago and is used to sell everything from electronics to cars.

Notice the photo of Santa in that first group of advertisements from White Rock. He really has not changed. And who can explain the phenomenon of someone who normally listens to the likes of Lady Gaga wanting to hear Bing Crosby at Christmastime? There only one explanation: tradition.

Tradition brings consumers back to their childhood. It reminds them of the simpler things in life and brings them comfort. In a world where everybody is trying to find the next new extreme, it is possible to brand using traditional values and still move forward. Every great brand can bring forth a tradition in their own way.

Some brands need to change but some get it wrong. They stray from what made them great and lose. The key is to know your brand story and to build on it. We know Santa comes in on a sleigh, only eats milk and cookies, and lives at the North Pole. We don’t specify the cookies; there could be a thousand different types. This is where Santa can branch out. This is the least barrier to entry for changing something about Santa. Instead of trying to come up with the next new thing out of the blue, ask yourself this: “What are my cookies?”

Photo courtesy of www.whiterocking.com

Article originally published on Beneath the Brand at: http://www.talentzoo.com/beneath-the-brand/news/Dear-Santa,-Traditional-Branding-Works/16253.html

Look Out, Madison Ave; Detroit is Coming

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Bruce Lee once said, “We are told that talent creates its own opportunities. Yet it sometimes means that intense desire creates not only its own opportunities, but its own talents as well.” The Detroit advertising community has the talent and the intense desire. This was clearly evident at The D Show advertising awards last week.

Sponsored by the Adcraft Club of Detroit, The D Show is an annual event that celebrates Detroit’s best and most creative minds in advertising. There you will see shops of all sizes from small ones to heavy hitters like the Detroit offices of Leo Burnett, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, Fallon, and WPP’s Team Detroit, comprising JWT, Y&R, Wunderman, Ogilvy, and Mindshare. The theme of The D Show was “Enter the D Show” which very closely resembled Bruce Lee’s infamous film, “Enter the Dragon.” It was described as the ultimate mental arts competition.

As the lights dimmed and the show took off you could cut the excitement with a knife, or a roundhouse kick, whichever you prefer. Stuart O’Neil of Team Detroit chaired the event and proudly noted, “First win the fight in your backyard, the make it on to the other show.” O’Neil speaking of “other” in reference to the Cannes Lions, Clio’s, Addys, and the like. Although The D Show may be a local advertising awards show, its ads have a global footprint.

As one may suspect, there were a lot of commercials and campaigns in the automotive sector. As one may not expect, there were a good number of campaigns outside of automotive, showing that Detroit is not simply a one-trick pony.

The D Show produced 85 awards in total. Below includes some of the stand-outs from the night.

  • One of the big local winners of the show was Yessian Music, taking home 7 Ds for original music and sound design.
  • The Richards Group won Best of TV with the Fiat commercial entitled “Seduction.” Watch the spot here.
  • In the Consumer TV category, Goodby, Silverstein & Partners accepted the D for their Chevy year-end sale event with St. Nick. Watch the spot here.
  • Capping off the night, Team Detroit won Best in Show with their Nanoblock print campaign for the Ohio Art Company.
  • See the entire list of winners.

The show was captivating and inspiring, marking a shining moment for the rebuilding of Detroit. Sherri Weitzman, President of Adcraft and National Advertising Manager at Cadillac, gave the closing remarks for the night, saying, “The out-of-town judges were blown away by the talent coming out of Detroit.” Weitzman elegantly concluded declaring, “We are back.”

Article originally published on Talent Zoo’s Beyond Madison Avenue at: http://www.talentzoo.com/beyond-madison-ave/blog_news.php?articleID=16148