Friday, June 18, 2010


Cheap is the last refuge of the unimaginative, someone once said.
At the end of the day, there's always some other oik who can work out how to be cheaper than you.

Cheap doesn't mean value.

And if all you have to compete on is price, you're as good as finished.

This nugget from Harrison Ford in this morning's Metro reminded me.

'When I came into [the movie] business I was under contract to a studio for $150 a week.
One thing I learned quickly is that the studios had no respect for a person who was willing to work for them for that amount.
I realised that the value I put on my own work was the value and respect I would get back'

does not have scale

Jack Cohen knew about the importance of scaleability in 1929 when he opened the first ever Tesco store, in Burnt Oak near Harrow in NW London.

He'd be a tad disappointed at the counter sign on his Goodge St Tesco metro branch.
i dont think this is what he had in mind.

'This counter does not have scale'
Presumably this counter that has a fixed number of transactions it is capable of processing, which will never change.

'We are unable to take payment of any weighted items'
Not only that, it seems it can only process 'virtual' goods.

Monday, June 07, 2010

wood beez (praying for customer service)

Each time I go to bed, following days spent encountering shoddy customer service, I pray like Aretha Franklin.

Ooh, your kisses (ie products and/or services),
Sweeter than honey,
And guess what?
So is my money,
All I'm asking for, is a little respect.

This week's losers being Carphone Warehouse repair centre, who after having my broken handset for close on two months have failed to call, email or even send a letter to update me on said phone's health.
I'm then forced online to check on progress of the repair via the repair tracker tool.
Quite a nice tool, to be fair. Shame no-one told me it even existed.

I'm greeted with a message saying that the handset was declared dead on 29th April.
Fair enough, but when were they thinking of telling me?
That's nearly 6 weeks ago with not so much as a cheep from a human being.

Poor show. Not malicious but just a bit lazy. Wood beez.

film socialisme

Perusing various articles commenting on 'Breathless' (A Bout De Souffle) - in cinemas again after 50 years - I stumbled upon the trailer here, for Jean‑Luc Godard's latest (and reputably to be his last - he's 80 shortly) picture, 'Film Socialisme'.

Curiously this trailer is effectively the entire film speeded up to fit into 2 minutes.

In almost cinema discrepant fashion, the movie also benefits from completely unintelligible multi language subtitles.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

how to do youth marketing

I'm sure we're all familiar with the 'Diffusion of Innovations' theory - how, why, and how quickly new ideas spread throughout cultures.

The concept was popularised in 'The Diffusion of Innovations' (Everett Rogers 1962) also adapted and illustrated by the famous adoption lifecycle curve as used by Geoffrey A. Moore in the tech marketing tome 'Crossing the Chasm'and in Gladwell's 'The Tipping Point', amongst others.

For the non-academics amongst us, it's explained neatly, and in a youth marketing context, by American Bandstand legend Dick Clark in this excerpt from a feature in seminal 70's US rock journal Creem by the equally legendary Lester Bangs.

'Anything that's new takes a while before it gets disseminated across the country...You get the J.C. Penney versions of fashions of what the style leaders are wearing.

There's an interesting premise in all of this, in the youth world, you take the lunatic fringe, the avant-garde, the style leaders, the nuts.

And if you are careful enough to determine what they come up with that's a legitimate trend, then you'll be able to figure out eventually what the people in the middle...will be doing in the next couple of months'

Look to the freaks-in-our-midst as Tom Peters would say.