#3: Inviting people to scam the CEO

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Dupont advertising a way to suffocate babies? Source: eBay

Before the public sees an advertisement, it goes through several levels. Usually, there is an advertising agency that presents ideas and concepts. These get approved by various marketing leaders or senior management of the brand. There are plenty of options for quality control and to sense check any campaign before it goes live.

Yet still, some of the most idiotic advertisements make it into the public domain — brands both big and small.

Today, we look at nine of the worst advertisements of all time. As there are so many failed ads for us to shake our heads at, this list only includes advertisements that were in print or online. …

A guide to a more fulfilling life, according to Matthieu Ricard.

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By MEDEF — https://www.flickr.com/photos/besoindair/2806307492/, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=93113711

Matthieu Ricard has been called the world’s happiest person.

This isn't an award given out based on votes on a reality TV show, or to the influencer who gets the most likes on a social media post. This title was awarded to Ricard based on a twelve-year brain study on meditation and compassion led by a neuroscientist from the University of Wisconsin, Richard Davidson.

His skull was linked up to 256 sensors and scans showed that when Ricard was meditating on compassion, his brain produced a level of gamma waves — those linked to consciousness, attention, learning, and memory — ‘never reported before in the neuroscience literature’, according to Davidson. …

From bedtime story to self-development

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Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

Tell me a bedtime story.

My son made this request, hoping it would delay sleep for a few more minutes. I knew he was trying to pull one over on me, but I was happy to indulge him. Many of the stories were entertaining for him but boring for me until I started reading him some of Aesops Fables.

I’m sure you’ve heard of him, Aesop was one of the greatest storytellers of all time. He was a fabulous fabulist whose legendary stories have lived on for over 2500 years.

Aesop lived in Greece from 620–564 BCE, and his fables have been passed down by Greek and Latin authors over time, interpreted and adapted. And now it’s the turn of an Aussie author to interpret them and offer some actionable points based on that. …

Running your own business is not all it’s cracked up to be

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Photo by Marvin Meyer on Unsplash

Director. CEO. Co-founder. Entrepreneur.

My LinkedIn profile looked damn impressive. My business was doing well. I had staff in offices across a few countries, which made it a global business. But I was exhausted. Seven years of living my dream — running my own company — had taken its toll.

We read stories on Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, hugely successful entrepreneurs and dream of a life (and a bank account) like theirs. …

A look into navigating the age gap

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Emmanuel Macron and wife Brigitte, who is 24 years his senior. Source WikiCommons

The headline screamed out to me.

Gran who shocked with details of wild sex life with toyboy marries the 35-year-old.

“Wild sex life” and “gran” are not commonly associated with each other — although maybe they should be more often. I was intrigued and clicked on the article which talks about how 80-year-old Iris Jones met 35-year-old Mohamed Ahmed Ibriham via an online chat group. She flew to Egypt to meet him in person, and within hours they were in bed together. I’ll let you find out the sordid details involving KY jelly yourself, but the story went viral.

In this instance, Mohamed was 18 years younger than Iris’s son. Her family hasn't approved of the relationship. For me, it prompted the question of how big an age gap is acceptable in a relationship. Would her family have been OK if Mohamed was ten years older? Twenty? What is an acceptable age differential? And does an age gap affect your chance of a long term relationship? …

Even great content relies on marketing to succeed

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Photo by Christina @ wocintechchat.com on Unsplash

Every time I write something, I think it will go viral.

Call it the power of positive thinking, call it wishful thinking, or call it a waste of time — I take pride in my content and believe readers will love it.

And then I wait. Tumbleweeds float by.

Sometimes words may be great. A story may be perfectly crafted, a tale executed well. But it may not be well received, at first. Often it requires a change in marketing to get a book to succeed. Some of the all-time classics were what we would term a slow burn.

Below are seven successful books that could have flopped (and some initially did), until the marketing strategy was changed. …

From gags to riches

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Photo by Crawford Jolly on Unsplash

All it takes is one idea. Launched at the right time to capture the interest of consumers. It doesn’t need to be an amazing, earth-changing idea. Something even a caveman could think of.

As an example, it can be a set of realistic-looking hillbilly novelty teeth. That was the idea that made Jonah White over $50 million. Yes, fake novelty teeth became a $50 million idea. Not bad for a man who couldn’t afford shoes, lived in a cave, and ate roadkill.

The origins

Inspiration can come from anywhere. For Jonah White, it was in 1994 at a college football game. In the stands, he saw Rich Bailey, a Southern Illinois University dental student surrounded by a crowd. Intrigued by what would draw so many people, White went over and saw that Bailey was wearing a set of false dentures or what he called hillbilly teeth. …

Being comfortable enough in a relationship to break the fart barrier.

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Photo by Charles Deluvio on Unsplash

I was walking with my partner along the beach on a nice spring day. We had finished a lovely seaside lunch that included a couple of cocktails. It was just a few months into our relationship, AKA the honeymoon stage.

Suddenly I heard a loud noise, that sounded a lot like a fart. I looked at my partner. She smiled and said, “that was me.” There wasn’t an attempt to cover it up, lay the blame on something else or any embarrassment.

I felt awkward. “You just farted….and I am right next to you!”

Hall of Shame

Another chance to laugh at the marketing misfortunes that cost big companies millions

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Photo by krakenimages on Unsplash

Warning. This article will make you smile. Perhaps laugh. Proceed with caution.

2020 has not been great. We can all agree on that. Many of you reading this may think it's been one of the worst years of your life.

I’m here to make you feel better with a humour vaccine of sorts, to show you where big brands have messed up and had even worse years than we have experienced in 2020. Companies with big budgets and huge sales, marketing, and advertising teams — businesses that, despite resources and processes still managed to make big mistakes. Huge.

In my extensive research of these for you, dear reader, I have omitted some of the well-publicized examples that have often been analyzed such as New Coke, the Gap Logo, Pepsi’s Kendall Jenner ad, as well as the ones that are already in the Hall of Shame. …

Aloha Wanderwell — the Amelia Earheart of the open road

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Source: Alohawanderwell.com

What were you doing at the age of sixteen?

I am willing to bet that whatever it was, it doesn't stack up to the feats of Idris Welsh. At sixteen, Idris was starting her journey to become the first woman to circumnavigate the globe. It took her five years to travel 380,000 miles across forty-three countries in a Model T Ford.

That was only the start of a truly inspirational life that included living with a Brazilian tribe, fighting in the French Foreign Legion, a shootout with angry elephants, and directing and appearing in eleven films.

It is quite the LinkedIn profile, and her life sounds like the plot of a fantastical Hollywood movie. Her story was full of adventure, and, unfortunately, isn't as widely known as it should be. I thought it would be worth it to share it and hopefully inspire readers. …


Ash Jurberg

12 x Medium Top Writer. Hall of Shame column for Better Marketing. http://ashjurberg.com/

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