22 June 2018

Reefer Madness

Image result for canadian marijuana flag

In some places it’s legal. In other places it’s sort of legal.

It’s now legal in Canada.

You can smoke it, eat it, spray it on body parts or someone else’s body parts.

https://thehipp.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Reefer-Madness.jpegThere’s a suppository. 

Lots of suppositories.

You can get really ripped or simply become moderately pain-free. Or both.

If I listed all of marijuana’s claims – valid, maybe valid, yet-to-be-determined, complete poppycock – you’d go mad.

The reefer madness today is its marketing and advertising. What a mess.

I’m in a category: The Baby Boomers Who Smoked Lots Of Grass Way Back When, Stopped For The Most Part, Now Might Want to Get Back Into It Again For Medical Reasons And/Or Just For Fun.

But I have no idea where to start, what goes on in these places. I do know that I don’t want to walk into a cannabis shop like a hayseed right off the bus.

But I am a hayseed right off the bus. All I know I learned from watching one episode of a bad sitcom.

Leafly is fascinating, but I’m lost:
     image

I just want a nickel bag. Although I know today it’ll cost me $50.00.

If there is some sort of National Marijuana Association and it wants to promote their products to the 50+ market, the best advertising would be simple, direct information. The less creative the better.

After I’m stoned you can get goofy, silly, and confusing. I won’t care.

31 May 2018

Smart Bathrooms

imageNow everything is smart. Even bathrooms. Even everything in bathrooms.

There are smart showers, smart tubs, smart toilets, smart sinks, smart medicine cabinets, smart soap dispensers, smart floors, ceilings and walls, smart lights, towel racks, tooth brushes.

They’re all smarter than I am. They all make me feel dumb.

Contrary to common wisdom, I don’t believe that hanging out with smart things will make you smarter. All my life I’ve been hanging out with dumb things, had to figure them out myself, which probably made me smarter. I think.

Or I could be wrong. With all these smart things, you have to first figure out how to figure out how use them. Maybe smart things do make you smarter.

Aging In Place. Universal Design. Technology. 
Smart-whatevers have taken over.

My litmus test for smart-whatevers: Does it make something simpler (good) or more complicated (bad)?

Rising Wall Bathtub

image

While understanding the possible need for an easier method of stepping into a bathtub, for most people this design/technology complicates a simple activity – taking a bath. We are used to running a bath and getting in after it is full. During the video, I kept wondering if, with all the features and buttons and whatnot, you might accidentally lower the side and flood the bathroom. Probably an irrational fear, but I bet other people might have the same thoughts. This is a negative reaction and will turn people away. The regular ol’ step-in bath/shower/spa seems easier to use and safer.

Image result for step-in bathtub

Toilet Lift

SMSS-2T

This is a horror show. An accident ready to happen. And not to get too graphic – but what if you really have to go? A serious concern as you get older.

Touch-less Toilets

image

Watch Video

A perfect example of making something simpler, not more complicated. I don't even care about the hygienic attributes - it simply makes things simpler.

Smart Shower

image

Watch Video (if you’re that bored)

A perfect example of making something simple absurdly complicated. You want to take a shower – not have a showerhead with a mind of its own or play video/computer games. A dumb shower.

Self-Cleaning Toilet

image

Watch Video

Makes things easier and less complicated. The original ‘self-cleaning’ toilet is a flush toilet. This improves on the original concept with no added complexity for the user.

Horizontal Shower

image

Watch Video

I have no idea what the point of this is. If someone can’t stand up, there are plenty of chair/seat options available – along with hand-held showerheads. Sexy video, however. A humorous take on the product:
https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/house-and-homes-blog/2012/feb/02/horizontal-shower-worst-invention-ever

So do smart-whatevers make you smarter or dumber? 

I don’t know, but pretty soon you’ll need a technology degree to pee.
____

Thanks to Tony Berrio Gallego for collecting these links.

18 May 2018

The more things stay the same…

CVRCompA long time ago I wrote a book. When it was published, I read it.

I was shocked.

I had no idea that I’d written a book about Human Resources. It certainly wasn’t what I thought I’d written. It was as if you thought you’d written a science fiction novel and it ended up being a cookbook.

I was reminded of this yesterday while reading an article in Tech Republic:

‘….Wait … I wrote a book about this in 2005, even though I didn’t think I was writing it …. Same plot, same themes, different setting, different characters.  But it’s my book …

Should I sue for plagiarism???

3 reasons why hiring older tech pros is a smart decision
By Alison DeNisco Rayome
image… “The combination of a stereotype that older adults don't use technology, and the fact that younger people are doing the development, has implications," Mitzner said. Not only are older workers being overlooked, but products that could reach a large segment of the population are not designed to do so.”

A blog post (before there were blogs) from 2003:

Back into the Fold
The Giant Leap: There had better be a minor revolution in the creative end of the advertising industry. Talented men and women in their late forties and fifties need to be brought back into the fold if you want to reach us. This includes copywriters, graphic artists, producers, directors, and creative directors.

The first few chapters of that moldy, old book:

Intro-First Chapter (PDF)

And a collection of posts about Human Resources:

Human Resources/Brain Power

The more things stay the same, the more they stay the same.

04 May 2018

Banner Blindness

Image result for where's waldoIt’s a type of blindness you welcome.

Often after googling something, finding the info you’re looking for on a webpage can be as frustrating as trying to find Waldo.

Banner Blindness Revisited: Users Dodge Ads on Mobile and Desktop
by Kara Pernice
image… To complete their tasks efficiently, people have learned to pay attention to elements that typically are helpful (e.g., navigation bars, search boxes, headlines) and ignore those which are usually void of information. Ads are perhaps the most prominent member of this last category …

I’ve written about this recently…

26 March 2018
NostraChuckus’ Crystal Ball of Common Sense has spot-on prognosticated what would come true in 2018

I’ve written about it for years…

06 March 2012
Digital Distractions
Digital interruptions are headache-inducing.

12 March 2012
Digital Distractions II
…The point is that Facebook is a social medium, not an advertising one … You interrupt social conversations with commercial messages at your peril…

And there’s this *WARNING: AUTOPLAY VIDEO!* (yes, I get the irony):

Four in 10 consumers scroll past and no longer trust social ads
Image result for ZDNetBy Eileen Brown
Consumers are constantly distracted by digital media and content and are losing trust in brands, according to a new study.

Maybe it’s time for advertisers to ‘get with it’ and stop relying on musty, outdated, tired media like the web and mobile:

Image result for transistor radioBrands Need to Join the 21st Century and Tap Into Radio Advertising
By Jateen Parekh
The audio market is booming…

25 April 2018

Women Redux

It’s been only a few months since I blogged about the power and influence of women:

21 February 2018
imageWomen
… Ten, twelve years ago there were older women. Now there are older women younger than I am. Weird. It’s some strange time/space warp I’m living in.

Mature women are just all over the place. Take a look:

imageMeet Fashion’s Next Generation: Over 60s
… Baby boomers have been largely absent from advertising, especially in high-fashion, despite driving 42 percent of spending in the US, versus 13 percent for millennial and Gen-Z consumers … Typically, companies gear their campaigns towards a younger demographic, assuming the ads will also appeal to their parents. Now, some companies are reversing that formula.

Here’s a brave campaign, certainly braver than one from a few years ago:

Ads for pee-proof underwear campaign redefine the customers who wear them
by Zoƫ Beery
image New York-based underwear company Icon’s strategy is to go all in with a cheeky, flippant message. Today, their "Piss Off" campaign takes over the Bryant Park subway station in Manhattan…

Pee-Proof Underwear Brand Launches ‘Piss Off’ Campaign To End The Stigma Of Bladder Leaks
imagePeriod-proof underwear company Thinx is taking on the incontinence industry with its sister brand Icon, “patented pee-proof underwear that lets leaky ladies kick pantyliners (and the lame stigma of bladder leaks) to the curb.”

And GRAND Magazine features a cover photo and article about model Yazemeenah Rossi (note: my interest is purely professional):

imageYAZEMEENAH ROSSI: Secrets To …
by Wendy Packer
… Contrary to what some people may think about women in their 60s, Yazemeenah feels prettier today than ever before … She is also very popular on Instagram with women in their 20s and 30s seeking advice on how to stay well as we age …

From The Remember When Files:

21 February 2007
Dove Pro-Age Campaign
… There is a big difference between thinking you are younger than you are, and not thinking that you are old …

15 April 2018

Generations Make Better Decisions Together

That’s what a blogger for Forbes tells us:

Future Of Work: Research Shows Millennials, Gen Xers And Baby Boomers Make Better Decisions Together
by Erik Larson
“Decision-making teams that include a wide range of younger and older employees significantly outperform more narrowly young or old teams.”

Good article, worth a read. But it’s difficult to get too excited about this musty revelation. Yours truly and many others have been saying the same for years.

From my book © 2005:

0976697319.01.I have a business friend who wants to start an advertising agency that would only accept clients whose products are for the 50-plus market, and he wants to hire only people over fifty, from the receptionist on up. It’s hard not to applaud such an idea, but I wouldn’t want to work there. And it wouldn’t be because of the receptionist. I’ve met some gorgeous, very smart ones who’ve mentioned to me that they’re grandmothers. (They’ve got to be lying.) The reason I wouldn’t work there is because I love working with people in their twenties. They sizzle. They’re galvanized. They charge me up.

Lots more:

Diversity = Productivity (2008)
image... Scott E. Page, a professor of complex systems, political science and economics at the University of Michigan, is a fresh voice... Rather than ponder moral questions like, “Why can’t we all get along?” Dr. Page asks practical ones like, “How can we all be more productive together?” The answer, he suggests, is in messy, creative organizations and environments with individuals from vastly different backgrounds and life experiences.

You Know Who's Boss – Consumers (2007)
But Do You Really Know Them Well?
image … It makes all the sense in the world for ad makers (both clients and agencies) to be well-stocked with people who understand consumers, whether young people who fathom the mysteries of cyberspace, a good mixture of people who reflect the ethnic and cultural diversity of our country, and, yes, even older people who understand the vitality and buying power of the great gorge of baby boomers overtaking our land.

Talk about the need for greater diversity in the business largely has fallen on deaf ears. (2013)
Nobody likes to be told whom they should hire -- unless it can be demonstrated that hiring the right mix of people can improve the bottom line…

Intergenerational Teams A Strength (2013)
The company focuses on recruiting new talent and retaining the services of experienced employees, which often results in the creation of inter-generational teams tackling company projects together.

So hire or work with someone who’s not you. You already have a you. Why would you need another one?

02 April 2018

Wearables, Home Monitors

A short video popped up on one of my feeds. It’s from the UK, is a few years old - but I’d never seen it:


I liked it, sent links to a few folks.

imageRonni Bennett blogged it.  Her take on home monitors and wearables brilliantly (and hilariously) complements the video:

Crabby Old Lady and Home Monitors for Elders
image… Marketed as a way to help elders live independently at home for as long as possible, hardly anyone has spent much effort yet to find out how the spied-upon old people feel about inanimate objects acting as nannies and tattling to their human controllers …

Also read the comments.

I’ve been screaming about over-the top monitor/wearable doodads for almost a decade.  A few moldy posts and two Huffpo pieces:

05 December 2009
Microsoft & AARP Study: Boomers & Tech II
image… How biofeedback-onic do you really want to be while taking a walk in the woods or playing some doubles?…  It’s a mark of honor to sustain a sports injury, but I’d feel rather silly if I were limping about and had to tell everyone, “I fell over while Wii-ing …”

15 October 2015
Baby Boomers Not Wearing Wearables
[image3.png]… While we’re not sailing around slaying metaphors, we are doing something almost as unforgivable: we’re getting old. What a curse.
And apparently we’re all supposed to strap on high-tech wearables as penance …

Never Leave The Hospital! Health Tech Wearables, Implanted Chips
huffington_post_logo1I'm having issues. I'm worried that the medical industry might want me to worry too much about my health. A little worry is good. But constant worry? It seems as if they want me to think of nothing else but my vital signs for the rest of my life …

Finally Live The Life You've Always Wanted With Wearables!
… Along with Google Glasses, you'll also be wearing Google Nose and Google Mouth.

Most of these gizmos are useless, will fall by the wayside. They also may turn out to be harmful. As you get older you have to hone your senses, not lull them. These whizzing, beeping doodads are often distracting and/or give you a false sense of security.

And the ones that are helpful won’t be an easy sell. So far, most of the advertising is clumsy and patronizing.    

26 March 2018

NostraChuckus’ Crystal Ball of Common Sense has spot-on prognosticated what would come true in 2018

Image result for nostrachuckusIt’s still March and already NostraChuckus’ Crystal Ball of Common Sense has spot-on prognosticated what would come true in 2018:

Image result for 1960s color tv09 January 2018
The Year of Big
That’s my prediction. Advertisers will finally follow simple common sense, something a certain seer has been urging for years …  An advertisement you hold in your hand is about as big as a large piece of confetti…

Proof of NostraChuckus’ uncanny predictive powers of  the mundane and the obvious:

imageAdvanced Ad 2018: Attribution Data Points to TV Ads Driving More Sales
3/26/2018
by Jon Lafayette
… TV advertising works, and marketers should buy more of it, according to an executive at a company specializing in attribution measurement …

The Drum19 March 2018
Marketers who prioritise digital advertising have delusions of effectiveness
by Samuel Scott
… Marketers think that online video and social media are the second- and third-best mediums for brand building. But in contrast, Ebiquity found that the top six mediums are actually traditional ones that are always proclaimed as “dead”.

This isn’t the most exciting video in the world, but it’s short and informative. Stick with it and you’ll learn a lot about the silliness of itsy-bitsy advertising:

NostraChuckus’ Crystal Ball of Common Sense is getting hazy now…

21 March 2018

Mark Ritson

https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/816023246659153920/GJd223zm_400x400.jpgMark Ritson is a fun fellow. And a troublemaker. I like him.

I don’t follow him on Twitter (actually, I do now, just clicked follow as I write this) but I really don’t have to follow him. His posts are always mucking up my feed because over a dozen people I do follow retweet him. Sometimes there are four or five retweets almost in a row of the same Ritson tweet.

Now there’ll be one more.

Dick Stroud tossed up a video of a recent Ritson talk:

Tuesday, March 20, 2018
Is marketing in such a bad state as depicted by Mark Ritson - probably
… When reading about the exploits of marketers I spend more and more of my time shaking my head in disbelief. How can they be so dumb?

Click the YouTube logo for the wide-screen version:

At 2:20 Mark goes on a waggish rant about the death of. Everything in marketing and advertising is dead and replaced by ……?

I’ve laughed about this for years. A few moldy posts:

01 May 2010
Foretellings
… Television, print, radio, and billboard ads will continue to have the visceral power they’ve always had – if only for their sheer size, simplicity, and cutting-edge audio/visual qualities.

18 May 2010
Advertising Is Dead. Again. (Part I)
It’s official.  The last sixty-four years of advertising has been declared ‘ineffectual’.

19 May 2010
Advertising Is Dead. Again. (Part II)
But … what about social media marketing?  That’s the new thing, what everyone’s talking about, the only way to go nowadays. It’s the greatest thing since the telephone.

21 July 2017
The Interminable Death of Television
Nothing I can think of is as lively and chipper as television in its final throes. If we all began dying as happily, healthily, slowly, and painlessly as TV, we wouldn’t fear the process - but welcome it.

At 12:18 in the video, Mark talks about one of my favorite subjects (because it doesn’t exist), Brand Purpose. He does a funny bit where he asks the audience to match the brand purpose with the product/company.  I did pretty much the same thing a decade or so ago when talking about Baby Boomer sites and their mission statements:

14 September 2006
INVASION OF THE BABY BOOMER POD PEOPLE

27 August 2009
Advertising to Baby Boomers Can Be Tricky Business
… “Now, take out a pencil and paper.  It’s time for a test.  Match the graphics with the tag lines.”

Around 19:40 he’s all over digital nonsense. Again, very funny. Reminded me of some of my takes on digital nonsense:

07 December 2012
What is Digital Advertising?
… Television is now digital, commercials are shot with digital cameras – so are commercials digital advertising?  Are digital spots on digital radio digital advertising?  Print ads are created on computers, usually rendered as PDFs, delivered digitally. Digital advertising?  Magazines, both editorial and ads, are digitally produced.  Digital advertising?

04 November 2013
Smartphones & Tablets, Apples & Oranges
Clients and just about everybody else seem to be confused about advertising on all these new-fangled gadgets.  Added to the mix are odd, stupefying concepts like digital and mobile and native. Most of this stuff is gobbledygook, but I’ll try to separate the chaff from the chaff …

[image%255B22%255D.png]
Keep watching Mark Ritson’s video for more laughs and insight.

16 March 2018

Joining Forces with Boomer/neXt

You will now encounter my beaming countenance on
The  Boomer/neXt site (it’ll take a few scrolls):

image

Consultant Team

With offices in Boulder, Colorado, and New York, Boomer/neXt is a national network of age-appropriate professional consultants, communications experts, market researchers and strategists who train brands to re-imagine and re-generate in the 50+ space.

After a few emails and phone chats with Barry Robertson, we agreed that joining forces would be a good idea. So we did it.

He’s put together an impressive collection of hot-shot associates. Hope I can keep up.

12 March 2018

Even Another Pointless Press Release

I keep getting them. Hundreds a week. Here’s one from a few months ago:

12 December 2017
Another Pointless Press Release
… What’s not mentioned, not even considered, is that 95% of advertising is targeted to Millennials.  Of course they would be influenced.

imageToday’s pointless press release (no linking to silliness) has something to do with a book about aging in place and technology.

I opened the email because I’d never heard of this person – and I know most of them. The best: Laurie Orlov and Louis Tenenbaum. You could also check out yours truly:

Aging In Place & Universal Design

I clicked the first link in the press release. It sent me to the book’s Amazon.com Kindle page:

image
This book is currently unavailable because there are significant quality issues with the source file supplied by the publisher.

The publisher has been notified and we will make the book available as soon as we receive a corrected file. As always, we value customer feedback.

Someone probably bought the Kindle book, it was a mess, had technical problems, reported it to Amazon.

If you can’t get it technologically correct, or you hire someone who bollixes the whole thing, do I really want to read what the author has to say about technology?

Just for fun, I clicked on

image

and the only thing there was the cover of the book.  It should’ve read Look outside

Do I really want to check out someone who hires a PR firm that is incompetent, one that sends out a press release with a link to something that is an embarrassment to the client?

Deliver us from newfangled flack news.


More PR shenanigans:

October 2017
The Press Release Parade: Halloween Personality Profiling

02 November 2011
The Press Release Parade Marches On

19 July 2013
Do PR outfits vet press releases anymore?