Wednesday, August 31, 2005

O.K. Einstein

"For an idea that does not , at first, seem insane - there is no hope"
Albert Einstein

Do you realise how much is involved in developing a paper and ink magazine? It is an enormous undertaking. I am creative director and co-publisher of the forthcoming Idealog(tm) (in conjunction with HB Media and AUT press). It is a thrilling and terrifying prospect at the same time. My greatest anxiety comes from the likely willingness of advertising agency media planners and buyers to book space in the book. In the past I have heard (time and again), 'we love the idea, but we will support you in issue two'.

In many ways it is a familiar scenario to the launch of Family Health Diary (FHD). Though my partners and I had a significant underwriting commitment from a large international pharmaceutical marketer other brands seemed sceptical.

At first.

Now FHD is the biggest single advertiser on TVONE, the biggest channel in the country. The product is the benchmark, not only for the pharmaceutical category, but also in the area known as masthead marketing - a term coined by the current owners of BrandWorld (I sold my stake some years ago and now work as consulting creative director on other properties being developed by the company).

It doesn't take a genius to realise that without innovation you will be eaten alive by competitors - and not necessarily in large, quickly fatal chunks either. The process might well be subtle, but being overrun by parasites has the same ultimate affect as being jumped by a great white shark.

In fact the need to innovate is the foundation of Idealog - the knowledge economy is dead - welcome to the creative economy. More on this follows.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005


"It takes your enemy and your friend, working together, to hurt you to the heart: the one to slander you and the other to get the news to you."
The One & Only - Mark Twain

I collect quotes. Some I drop into conversation, like a drop of vanilla essense into pancake mix. It's fun.

Here's a bonus:

"Reason informed by emotion…expressed in beauty…elevated by earnestness…lightened by humour…that is the ideal that should guide all artists."

The One & Only - Charles Rennie Mackintosh

Monday, August 01, 2005

It's not about the bike

I tried to read Lance Armstrong's book It's not about the bike but had to give up. It was agonising. While I have enormous respect for Armstrong's achievements his ego build up in my mind like lactic acid in the thighss of a lesser athlete on a hill stage of the Tour de France. Still, Mr Armstrong qualifies as The One & Only. I doubt we'll every see another cyclist as accomplished anytime soon. Overcoming cancer alone would be a personal achievement enough, but winning the Tour seven times is incredible.

The media property I created called Eating Well won a marketing award on Thursday night. I was very proud of the efforts of the team at BrandWorld who have sold the product so well and that the judges suggested we enter all of the products in our portfolio next year.

Development of Idealog, the magazine I am working with HB Media to have live by December is progressing very well. It has been well received by sponsors and advertisers. The core concept of cross-pollination is working well for us. More follows.

How about this (from an article on 60 minutes):