Wednesday, October 05, 2005


Brands are beautiful things. A brand is a community.

The textbook says that a brand is an owned thought, an association. I would say that it is a community, a common emotion, a belonging. To be loyal to a brand is to be a part of a community.

Basically, brands bring people together. But that is not really all.

Rob asked me to write a paper on how ads make the world a better place. I think that they do, I really do.

So I will be slowly crafting my argument.

A better world: brought to you by our sponsor, brands are love

Some people find advertising to be an annoyance. It is always comming between them and the final vote on Survivor. Or making them wait before their online movie or game loads. Or stairing back at them from the side of the street, or a bench, or bus stop, or pregnant womans belly. Some people hate advertising. They see it as more than annoying, they see it as harmful.

I see it as a possable future paycheck. But my intrest in advertising is not purely monatary, I see something else in it entirley. There are many faults that can be found in advertising, and social questions that can be raised regarding its form up until now. I also know that for all it's faults, advertising is a generally good endevour with many social benifits. In short, advertising is good.

One arguement against advertising is that it is invasive ----

There are many reasons to dispise advertising, or at least, many reasons have been brought to the table. Some say that advertisements degrade women by using them as sexual objects ect. But what do these various possabilities about the medium say about it?

Saturday, August 27, 2005

Is perception reality?

As I straddle the fence between the advertising world and a search for knowledge of the universe, this question plagues me quite often. The first thing I learned in Principle of PR, my third class of my first year at Chapman University is that your customer's perception is your reality.

But does perception really constitute reality? Some philosophers think so.

Some have argued that there is no absolute truth, but rather, truth is in the mind of the beholder. If this is the case, than truth really has no "truth" to it at all. If that is the case, than marketers needn't worry about being misunderstood. There are no misunderstandings. Rather, how their brand is viewed is how it is.

That may not harm any markers psyche, but it turns the stomach of the philosopher in me.

Let us say, just for a moment, that perception does constitute reality, and, by that measure, what is believed to be true by any individual is true. That would mean that if a marketer, or product planner were to associate Japanese Rice Wine Sake with the Great Wall of China, they would be relaying to their customer actual fact.

Even the PR genius that lets Tom Cruise open his mouth in public can see that, at least for brands, belief-system based reality is a one way street. I have never heard "well, they may have mixed up my heritege with another's, but, if its true for the executives at Old Navy, then it is good enough for me" from a disgruntled Old Navy or A&F shopper.

The fancies (and fallacies) of consumers should be paid mind, no doubt about that. But that doesn't mean that reality is anyone's to distort. With that said, it is much easier to manage perception if your brand is not lying.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Socrates was a blogger

Socrates never wrote anything, as far as we know. But there is something about the Socratic method that is strikingly similar to today’s sexy new blogasphere.

Most of what we know about Socrates came from the texts of Plato, who used the character of Socrates to weave dialogues in his texts, like the Republic.

Legend has it that a wise oracle told Socrates at a very young age, that he was the smartest person in Athens.

This he could not believe.

So he went to those that he assumed must be smarter than him, but found that all of them seemed to think they knew everything, when in actuality, new nothing.

"The only difference between them and I," he said, "Is that I know nothing, and am aware of it, but they know nothing, but think they know everything."

Socrates devoted his life to open source knowledge, and even more relevant to the blogasphere, dialogue. Socrates would have blogged, because the blogasphere is modern Greek gathering place, for dialogue and ultimately to find truth.