Why Your CPG Brand Isn’t Remarkable and What You Can Do About It

This post originally appeared in our August '13 issue of “Live Report from the Future of Marketing,” our monthly Post-Advertising newsletter. Subscribe for free here.

Marketing CPG products is hard. Marketing Apple products is easy. Well, not really (on both accounts), but let me explain. 

Apple products—computers, phones, music players, tablets and other digital devices—are some of the most expensive products on the market. But devoted fans come out in droves to purchase the latest editions, seeming not to mind that they’re paying a premium for the mass-produced technologies. I’m not faulting them. I’m a fanboy myself, writing this article on my MacBook Pro, which is connected to Wi-Fi with Apple Airport, with my iPhone and iPad close by. 


What a Lemonade Stand Taught Me About Storytelling

I was on my way to play golf this past weekend when I drove by a young girl selling lemonade on the sidewalk in front of her house. I have always made a point of stopping and purchasing (insert product here) if a child is selling it (not their parents—the child). Unfortunately, I was running late, and this time I couldn’t stop. It broke my heart.

I pass a convenience store on the same route to the highway, and I don’t even think about stopping there for lemonade, even though the ones they sell probably taste just as good and haven’t been sitting outside in the hot sun. I don't stop at the lemonade stand because I am craving lemonade. I stop because there’s a story behind the lemonade stand. I may not know the details, but I know it’s there, and I have an idea of what it might be. When I get home, I can mention to my wife that I stopped at a lemonade stand and tell her all the cute things the child did as she made the sale.


The True Heart of Social Media

An inspiring thing has happened to our social media feeds in the last week. The tightrope of life and death that we all walk on was exposed for one young entrepreneur. Refusing to take his situation lying down, he's using viral marketing to raise awareness for his ailment and motivate people across the globe to help save his life.


If Seth Godin Shuts Up, What Would We Miss?

Seth Godin has earned a reputation as a marketing guru who provides both intelligence and buzzwords. It was a disappointment, then, to see him venture recently into unknown (to him) territory with an ill considered and hastily assembled blog post titled “When newspapers are gone, what will you miss?” The post reveals clearly that Seth knows little about journalism—neither the practice of it nor the economics. Truly, no one will miss Seth if he gracefully bows out of the conversation about journalism’s future.