Why “The Pitch” Will Perpetuate Bad Practices

Perhaps you have seen the preview episode of The Pitch, AMC’s newest show about the advertising industry, which debuts on April 30. In this first episode WDCW competes against McKinney Advertising for a Subway breakfast ad campaign. While dramatic and entertaining, the episode also perpetuates several bad practices that plague the entire marketing sector. This “reality” TV approach focuses on the tension of competitive pitching for major accounts. It assumes that winning depends on the creative that resonates most with the decision committee. In this case a Mac Lethal video-inspired campaign from McKinney out duels WDCW’s zAMbie campaign for Subway’s breakfast line. But nowhere in the episode do we see serious conversations about the following:

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Six for Six

Image by slgckgc Next Monday marks the six year anniversary of my first blog post. As I’m blogging less these days, I decided my final post of this year with six reflections based on my experiences over these years. Here are my observations about social media, blogging and marketing based on my journey: 1) The Idealism of Better Business Through Social When I began blogging, I believed in The Cluetrain Manifesto. Its raw message that businesses would be forced to act better thanks to social media spoke to me. Cluetrain inspired hope that conversations could change the very fiber of business in favor of people. I was full of passion for that change, and my first book Now Is Gone […]

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The PR Industry Can’t Help Itself

Of all the professional skill groups that can be included in the marketing toolkit, public relations is the most ridiculous (PR is also used for public affairs and other non-marketing activities). Filled with backwards unethical and untrained professionals that consistently spam people and promote attention metrics instead of actual outcomes, the PR profession can’t help its poor image.

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The Secret to Success: Impact and Experience

I gave the following commencement speech yesterday in Richmond to Virginia Commonwealth University’s School of Mass Communications. The speech focuses on what makes for a successful career in communications, specifically by navigating today’s fast moving media environment. The keys to success are gaining experience and delivering impact. Thank you to Bill Farrar, Yan Jin, Jon Newman and the rest of the faculty at VCU for having me. And thanks to those of you who took the poll and answered questions on the challenges facing today’s communications students entering the job market. Commencement Speech for VCU Mass Communications School

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Fixes for Three Lousy PR Pitches

Image by Melvin Schlubman We all know how bad the state of media/blogger relations is: Bad pitches abound! But there are some pitches that are worse than others, and as a blogger for the past six years, my in box has become littered with them. Here are three that all too common, and some suggestions to improve them another: 1) The XXX Blogger Already Wrote About It Pitch This one is really annoying. It usually comes from someone you know in a passing manner, or is a cold pitch from a PR person. It goes something like this: “Hey Geoff. I was hoping you would write about xxxx. Joe Schmo (or Mary Doe) already wrote about it here: (INSERT URL). […]

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Book Title Revealed: Marketing in the Round

This post is co-written by G Squared (Gini Dietrich and Geoff Livingston). Guess what?!? We finally get to talk about our new book! We joked, early on, that it’s not nice to tell prolific bloggers they can’t write about what they’re writing about. It’s been a challenge, that’s for sure. It’s time to let the cat out of the bag with our book now listed on Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Special congratulations again to Gini, who is making her first appearance as a published author. Her post today on Spin Sucks discusses some of the feeling that comes with that. Generally, Gini’s ability to market has been eye opening. She is stellar, and deserves to be one of the […]

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A New Novel from Geoff Livingston

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