Mixed Signals: Pole Dancing for Kids?

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.Remember how the word association game works? I say a word, and you say the first thing that comes to mind. It’s what Family Feud was all about.That's why I was caught off guard by an article on The Huffington Post that had "pole dancing" and "children" in the same report. These two words certainly do not go together in my brain. The article says that pole-dancing enthusiasts want … [Read more...]

Mixed Signals: The Price is Right! Right?

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.Math isn’t my thing. That’s because numbers don’t make sense to my word-wired brain. So when it comes to making purchase decisions, I am drawn to sale signs (lower prices listed right there, before my very eyes) and what I think I should have to pay for an item (like an automated spending matrix built into my brain). It’s not mathematically sound. But this is how I’ve gotten through … [Read more...]

Mixed Signals: Nike Redefines Greatness

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.It was sort of sad, really—the bungled attempts the International Olympic Committee (IOC) made to ensure their select sponsors received the bulk of the spotlight during the London games. The athletes were forced into a two-week blackout period, restricting them from any mention of unofficial sponsors. And unofficial sponsors were in no way allowed to benefit from Olympic-themed mes … [Read more...]

Mixed Signals: You Are Your Brand

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.Some of the best principles of communication are true truth—meaning, what works in business communications also works in personal communications. The more personal businesses make their communications, the easier it is for people to relate to them.That's why branding is necessary—it takes an inanimate object and gives it depth and personality that our humanness can relate to. … [Read more...]

Mixed Signals: Do Products Deliver the Simple Life We Crave?

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.With all the busyness we face trying to do it all and more in this life, we speak wistfully of our need for more time and less pressure. We pine for more and for less, depending on what we have or lack. And more often than not, we watch it elude us even as we choose one more activity, one more commitment, one more assignment. Busy rules us.Marketing gurus play into this helpless f … [Read more...]

Mixed Signals: B-cycle Bike Sharing Checks American Dream Excesses

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.The cornerstone of the American Dream is ownership—of land, a home, vehicles, and all the gadgets and tools that make living in America easy and comfortable. Companies have built upon this rock largely because it means a mighty profit for them. Advertising campaigns are crafted to whisper discontent sweetly in our ears so that we will be ever-seeking the latest and greatest the mar … [Read more...]

Mixed Signals: Jedi Mind Tricks of Advertising Really Do Work

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.Lots of people claim that advertising doesn’t really work. I disagree. Good advertising works so well that people don’t even realize what hit them. It’s sort of like the Jedi mind trick of the Advertising Realm. With the wave of a hand and the power of suggestion, good advertising leads the viewer to think the thoughts they want them to think.That’s what happened to the people of T … [Read more...]

Mixed Signals: Your Life as a PR Campaign

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.Why is the use of social media so popular? It’s fun. It’s lighthearted. It offers a reprieve from life's heaviness.This is also why businesses are benefiting from social media. It provides a place for customers to interact casually with the brands they love, personifying them, integrating them.Although our personal updates are in-the-moment comments about the dailyness of life, f … [Read more...]

Mixed Signals: McDonald's, Photoshop, and Why We're Lovin' It

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.Psst. Have you heard?McDonald’s is coming clean.That delicious burger you see in its ads? The one with the cheese melting and the mustard and ketchup dripping?It’s not your average McDonald’s hamburger. All the components are the same—bun, burger, condiments—but the execution of a drive-through burger is nothing compared to the rigorous assembly of a burger heading to advertisi … [Read more...]

Mixed Signals: What Your Facebook Likes Say about Jesus

Mixed Signals is Erin Straza’s weekly musing about marketing miscellany in advertising, branding, and messaging.What is it about that plucky, thumbs-up Like button? Facebook has taken a simple engagement tool and turned it into a marketer’s dream. With every click, we consumers are cataloging the businesses and brands we are partial to. And it’s so easy to do—just a click links us to something that charms us.However, our participation in this community-wide click-fest has given Facebook a stu … [Read more...]


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