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Monday, December 6, 2010

Holiday Thoughts for 2010

Happy Holidays from Gerald Linda & Associates



2010 marked the 16th (!) year of operations for GL&A. During this time the company evolved as the economy waxed and waned and as the Internet began to assert its remarkable impact on our business and personal lives. We added services—particularly acting as interim director of marketing, learned new skills, and began seriously and regularly writing about marketing, which culminated in a book in 2009, MORE Guerrilla Marketing Research. This Holiday letter is the second electronic version. The main reason for using electronic mail is to remain contemporary. This need for keeping up with the times is my message for this year.


In July of 2007 I wrote a blog for Sales and Marketing Management Magazine, titled “Whither Marketing?” It briefly recounts the history of marketing and posits that while the classical model of marketing is broken, nothing better had as yet come along to replace it.

Three years later, while it is still true that a commonly agreed upon sense of how marketing is to be practiced has not emerged, there are inklings aplenty.


And I’m afraid it’s not going to be pretty for the “adults” reading this email. Famous economist, Joseph Schumpeter, wrote about what he termed “the creative winds of destruction,” those innovative forces, which, under capitalism, could make entire industries obsolete seemingly overnight. This is exactly what is happening to marketing, advertising, public relations and marketing research right now! I know you can already feel the breeze.


For an even stronger sense of the hurricane that’s gathering force, here’s a hotlink to an article from the December 2010/January 2011 issue of Fast Company magazine. It bears the provocative title: “Mayhem on Madison Avenue: Advertising Is on the Cusp of Its First Creative Revolution Since the 1960s, But the Ad Industry Might Get Left Behind.”


Consider a few key (argumentative) quotes and then go get the article:


·        “Like a beetle preserved in amber, the practice of advertising has sat virtually unchanged for the last half century.”

·        “. . . coding is now prized over copywriting and . . . a resume that includes Xbox and Google is more desirable than on featuring stints at BBDO or Grey.”

·        “I feel like I’m standing here and there are a thousand baseballs dropping from the sky and I don’t know which ones to catch.”

·         “Marketing in the future is like sex. Only the losers will have to pay for it.”


Despite the seemingly gloomy tone of the preceding paragraphs, I think there is a remedy. As you know, I’m co-editing an exciting new book, LEADING EDGE MARKETING RESEARCH: 21st Century Tools and Practices. Our goal was to showcase contemporary best practices,  work that actually is being done (not just theory) by leading practitioners from around the world. We have seen first drafts  of all the chapters now and I’m telling you straight out that several contain paradigm shifting ideas and methods—not just about research, but about the practice of marketing in 2010 and the years to come. And the book will serve as a practicum, containing hands-on information on how to do it. None of us, Toto, are going to be in Kansas anymore.


At this time I also want to thank you for the privilege of being of service as a strategy counselor, marketing research provider, and hands-on interim marketing executive—this year and in the past.


I wish you and your family a Happy Holiday and a healthy and prosperous New Year.





4:14 pm cst          Comments

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