Kel Kelly

Hey, thanks for swinging by my blog.

Whether it's topical news, internet happenings, social media, public relations, marketing, start-ups, mobile shiz or whatever, I promise to wade through the bullshit and give you my unbuffered perspective.

You'll note I never take on a "corporate tone" — whether I'm chatting you up at a party or speaking to the CEO of a multi-billion dollar company, my voice never changes. I say what's on my mind and I'm often the champion of the underdog.

I'm a social media junkie and smoke Google Analytics in a crack pipe to get my day going. I hope my immersed insight and offbeat view make you laugh. More importantly, I hope you take a second and share your thoughts by posting a comment. If you have any ideas on how to make my blog better, shoot an email to [email protected].

Peace out.

Archive for the 'Featured' Category

Social Media’s Word Hijacking (2012)

Nov. 26th 2012

I grew up in the ’70s. Things were so different back then. Bad hair wasn’t a day, it was a way of life. The only thing hotter than a mood ring was a pet rock. We wore polyester everything and danced to disco music blaring from our 8-track tapes while grooving in earth shoes on an orange shag rug.

Words were different back then too. Fortunately, social media has permanently hijacked some of those words and given them a completely different meaning.

Remember when…

Alert: How you tried to act in front of the cop who pulled you over when you were in high school and clearly had way too much to drink

Always-On: That annoying friend who thought being funny was a 24-hour commitment

Apps: Things you ate at a party when the limited choices included a cheese ball covered in nasty nuts, devilled eggs, ham pinwheels, cocktail weenies, and cream cheese filled celery

Badge: What the cop who pulled you over when you were in high school and clearly had way too much to drink flashed as he walked up to your car

Bookmarking: Used to note a page and required using a laminated construction paper strip with a glued-on school photo, pieces of cut doily, a tassel and shreds of felt

Browser: The bitch that constantly roamed your store but never bought anything

Bulletin Board: A framed piece of cork that hung on your bedroom wall and proudly displayed your certificates of accomplishment, sports ribbons, Polaroid photos, dried corsage, and yellowed newspaper clippings

Chat: What a nice mother would say she needed to have with you after the principal handed her a stack of absentee notes you had forged

Chrome: A material used in everything from Trans Ams to lava lamps to fondue pots to mopeds

Circles: One of many shapes you doodled when you dreamed of class ending so you could hitchhike home to watch Sanford and Sons on your black and white TV with the tinfoil on the antenna

Comment: A verbal reply that could range in tone from June Cleaver to wise ass

Compete: What you did when playing Space Invaders with a friend at an arcade

Connections: What that kid who had been shaving since eighth grade had when he hooked you up with someone who could get you a fake ID.

Conversation: A verbal exchange between two people whose proximity was so close you could smell each other’s breath

Craigslist: Something a 7-year-old boy holding his breath would give to Santa knowing full well that he would have “naughty” next to his name

Delicious: Because you didn’t know any better, a word often used to describe the nasty “Apps” listed above

Dig(g): A term hippies used to confirm their stoned friend understood what they had said: “Ya dig?”

Engagement: A promise to marry that used to only be allowed between a man and a woman until we gays came along and ruined the sanctity of it

Feed: What a farmer did to his cows, chickens, sheep and goats to ensure they didn’t die

FlashMob: Involved a group of people, trench coats, nudity and arrests

Flickr: Something you used to do with a boogie

Followers: What Jesus had before the Vatican effed everything up

Follow Friday: A day of the week called Saturday which at the time usually included a different kind of hash tag (see below)

Foursquare: A playground game that involved a square court and four players — cell phone, check-ins and badges were not required

Friends: Kids who came over to your house when your parents were out and helped you drink your dad’s Schlitz beer

Groundswell: What happened over the septic tank after your sister flushed too many sanitary napkins that were the size and consistency of an airline pillow down the toilet

Hangout: What you did in your friend’s fake wood paneled basement when his parents weren’t home

Hashtag: A tap on your friend’s shoulder before you passed him/her the bong

Host: Someone who wore an apron and owned the house where those nasty “Apps” were being served

Instagram: The sudden appearance of your nana after you lit up a joint when you didn’t know she was in the next room playing Lite Brite

Like: A word used to describe a middle school crush and was usually followed by “going out,” which had nothing to do with leaving the building

Links: Made of chains and could only be found in a fence that surrounded an above-ground pool, hibatchi grill, tether ball pole and whirly bird

Lurker: The weird neighbor whose pants’ pockets always had holes in them

Mashup: Involved a bunch of boiled potatoes and a kitchen utensil that looked like it would be better used to brand cattle

MySpace: Part of a three word retort you would scream at your mother after she told you to clean up your filthy room. As in: “It’s my space!”

Pandora: That trouble-making Greek biyatch who used a box to store all things evil

Photosharing: The act of passing around funny Polaroids that may have included your friend Jimbo with a perm wearing bell bottom pants, a pukka shell necklace, a peace bandanna, and a paisley shirt with a smiley sticker on it

Post: What the Center — who was probably wearing white canvas high tops — on your basketball team did in an attempt to get the ball passed to him/her

Profile: When used almost always had the words “serial killer” before it

Real-Time Search: What you did frantically upon realizing your friends were moments away from picking you up for the dance and you couldn’t find the nylon jogging suit you planned to wear

Sharing: What first graders did with their bologna sandwiches at lunch and it never involved pushing a button

SlideShare: What you happily did on the playground in August when the bully wearing jean cut-off shorts pushed you aside to go down that sizzling hot metal thing

StumbleUpon: Usually what you did to the cop after he pulled you over when you were in high school and clearly had way too much to drink

Tag: A sale in your front yard where you could earn $1.05 from selling your Wacky Packs and your mother’s old wigs

Threads: What you were wearing when you passed the bong to your friend

Timeline: The thing you drew in thick black marker on construction paper for your “About Me” school project that highlighted significant life events like getting your head gear and the bicentennial

Tool: A completely unaware poser who thinks the world is impressed with his sexual prowess but who usually elicits the response “loser” behind his back

Trend: The hippest styles people were into like feathered hair, mutton chop sideburns and socks with toes

Trolls: Those way-too-creepy, tiny, naked dolls with the wild-ass hair who look like they licked an electrical outlet

Tumblr: The round cork things — you always forgot to use no matter how many times your mom told you — that were used to keep that expensive veneer, dark wood coffee table from getting ruined

Tweet: What the birds did way too early in the morning the night after the cop pulled you over when you were in high school and clearly had way too much to drink

TweetUp: Something two horny birds did after way too much booze

Viral: Something you didn’t want to get and sure in the eff didn’t want to spread

Widget: Something a manufacturer made when you had no effing idea what they actually made

Yelp: What a dog did when you accidentally hit him with your banana bike

Can you think of anything I missed?

Posted by Kel | in Featured, Uncategorized | No Comments »

A Working Mom’s DNA

Mar. 30th 2011

Since I was 15 years old, I have always had a job. My jobs have ranged from scrubbing toilets as a chambermaid to selling pots and pans door to door to working at a fruit stand to donning a very gay looking blue uniform as a security guard. My mother was a single working mother long before there ever was such a thing and I unknowingly inherited my work ethic from her. The thought of not working never crossed my mind, in the same way getting up and putting on a dress, pantyhose and high heels never crosses my mind.

Following all three pregnancies, I took whatever maternity leave was allowed, tagged on a couple of weeks of saved vacation and made the best of it. It usually meant I had about three months off. And then I was right back into my full-time job feeling ragged, out of shape and missing my kids. But still, the thought of not working never crossed my mind.

I think I was a better mom because I worked. While I cherished the time I had with my kids, having time away from them allowed me to be a multi-dimensional person with better balance. I know my kids saw my struggles as I tried to juggle work and them. And, I failed a lot. Sometimes the milk was sour, sometimes I missed a deadline to sign them up for a sports team, sometimes their shoes were too small, and sometimes I just forgot they needed to be somewhere. Regardless, instead of failure I think they saw an unwavering commitment to get over the endless stream of the obstacles life throws at you. And, more importantly, they saw that I was happy in spite of what some might describe as chaos.

Now, let me tell you something about my three oldest kids. They are all very different. I often like to use a coloring analogy to describe them. My daughter Julia was — and still is — one to always push the bounds and always colors outside the lines. My son Shaun is someone who always took rules very seriously and would never, ever color outside the lines. And my son Patrick didn’t know you wanted him to color, but would be happy to start coloring now if you still needed him to.

For as astonishingly unique as they are, they are bound by one clear strand of my DNA — the need to have a job. Each of them has had a job since they were about 15. Shaun and Patrick work 60+ hours a week in the summer at a very busy restaurant on the Cape. Julia has always somehow juggled two jobs at the same time while consistently making the Dean’s list in college. Yet, I don’t ever remember saying to them: “You need to get a job.” It’s as if they inherently knew at age 15 that in order to achieve balance and accountability in one’s life, work is something that you just need to figure out. Trips with friends, tickets to concerts, or meals out don’t just happen. Having the independence to do the things they love comes at a price. And, if they have learned in the process that you can be happy while maintaining the requirements of life — school, work, whatever — then I’ve done my job.

I must have blinked. Today, I have two kids in college and one graduating high school in about eight weeks. Yet I have an incredible calm when I think about their future. I don’t know what they’ll be, but I have a feeling they will be happy. Because as innate as having a job is to them, I know that they are driven by a greater cause — the need to be accountable, responsible and self-sufficient — independent of me but forever marked by my DNA (and, thankfully my mom’s).

Do you think having a working kid is nature or nurture?

Please note: Comments on this blog are moderated. Any comments that are focused on personal attacks, bullying, threats or overall negativity will be removed.

Posted by Kel | in Featured, Uncategorized | 29 Comments »

Facebook After Death

Dec. 28th 2010

For all the differences in the cultures around the world, there is one common thread that connects us: the desire to never forget a loved one who has passed away. The unfortunate reality is that as time passes, granular details of a deceased’s life slowly fade. As we grow older, we find our memories are not what they once were, and although we will never ever forget a lost loved one, many of the smaller details begin to escape our memory.

Before Facebook, to keep memories alive, someone had look at the old photos that they collected somewhere in a box or swap stories with a friend. Once in a while, you might even hear or tell a story or memory that had never been shared. However, in most cases, a loved one’s life is often recalled through common headlines, iconic representations of who they once were — the athlete, the giver, the comedian, the whatever. The stories reinforce the overarching attributes that defined someones life, but really never capture the spirit or emotion of the person who passed. The voice of the deceased died when they did.

For younger people, the challenge to remember a lost loved one is only further amplified. Imagine a child who lost a parent when they were six years old. At the end of the day, they will never really know that parent from first-hand experience. They are dependent on the shared stories of others and a limited number of old photos.

Enter Facebook. Although one of its least talked about attributes, Facebook allows for a loved one to have a voice, even after death. Facebook permanently captures all the granular details that would otherwise get lost in time. From the daily status updates to conversations between friends, Facebook enables the deceased’s voice to live on through the shared content.

Imagine a six year old losing a parent today. If the parent has been on Facebook for a few years, that six year old now has a first hand, daily account of that parent’s life. They can hear the parents voice through the multiple status updates that they posted. They can see what types of communications occurred between the parent and his/her friends and get a sense of the things that made them laugh or cry. Facebook content captures the life of a human being from his or her perspective and ensures that no memory will ever fade.

I would give my left lung to have had my Mom on Facebook before she passed 7+ years ago. I have a feeling she would have been addicted to the platform. She would have loved how connected she could be with family and friends. And I would love nothing more than to go back and witness her life again through her own voice.

As crazy as it sounds, I take some comfort in knowing that my kids will be able to go back through my profile after I pass. They can be reminded first hand of the things that I was passionate about and the things that sent me over the edge. They can laugh at the things that made me laugh. They can see that I was happy and loved my life. And more importantly, they can see that they were my life. My comfort is not rooted in anything narcissistic on my part, but because I honestly believe Facebook will ease their healing process and keep memories alive in a way that before Facebook was never possible. I believe Facebook will bring them happiness and peace sooner than they could have ever experienced before it existed.

For as much as Facebook is about sharing and experiencing life, I think its impact after death is a far greater contribution to the world. What do you think?

Please note: Comments on this blog are moderated. Any comments that are focused on personal attacks, bullying, threats or overall negativity will be removed.

Posted by Kel | in Featured, Uncategorized | 19 Comments »

Money Can Buy You Happiness

Jul. 29th 2010

If ever a brand needed to be repositioned, it’s “money.” Mention the word “money” and people think nothing but negative thoughts. Viscerally, most people associate money with something bad and always in the context of earning and spending. The economy hasn’t helped money’s brand image. It is a reference point in every negative story from unemployment to housing to the GDP. Money has been cited as the #1 reason couples fight and subsequently divorce. Hell, even BP drove the bus over money’s back. I can recite the line, “The BP disaster has cost the Gulf Coast region $23 billion” in the same way I can recite lines from children’s books I have read 1,000+ times — “Goodnight room. Goodnight moon. Goodnight cow jumping over the moon. Goodnight light, and the red balloon…”

You would have to have lived under a rock to have never heard the quote, “Money can’t buy you happiness.” It is this very quote that sums up the negative brand image money is dealing with today. I think it’s time for a money brand makeover. I believe money can buy you happiness and some of the happiest moments in my life revolved around an experience with money. The difference is that it involved giving it away, not spending it.

About seven years ago, I read the book Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By In America. My daughter was entering high school at the time and the book was required summer reading. The book is about the author who goes undercover and tries to live on various minimum wage jobs. Needless to say, she can’t survive on minimum wage and and the emotional and physical toll it takes on her is extremely disheartening. Having read the book, I have not been able to encounter an adult making minimum wage without wondering how difficult his or her life situation must be. Since reading the book, I have started a regular routine of finding a minimum-wage employee who looks like he/she needs a break and giving them $100 cash. Of all the wonderful things I have experienced in my life, I can say aside from the birth of my children, my wedding and my nephew being declared cancer free, nothing has brought me more happiness than these random acts of giving.

I remember being at a dumpy iHop on Easter morning a few years ago and watching a waitress race around frantically trying to keep up with what was clearly too many tables to manage. People didn’t look at her when they spoke to her and if they did, it was because they were yelling at her for something. She looked so ragged and defeated. I walked over and gave her $100. She burst into tears and hugged me as she told me of the horrific bad luck she had experienced and how much she needed the money. I proceeded to open my wallet and give her everything I had in it. While it made me incredibly happy to make her happy, the sadness I felt for her situation was overwhelming.

I look at what Bill and Melinda Gates are doing through their foundation and can’t help but see money in a positive light. I look at Alex’s Lemonade Stand and tear up hearing Alexandra “Alex” Scott raised over $1 million to find a cure for the disease that took her life when she was eight years old. The positive stories about money are endless and I find them awe-inspiring. These peeps are motivated by money in a way that will change the world one penny at a time.

So how does money reposition itself? Good question. Perhaps like many brands it needs to create a new category and dissociate itself from the current category. Maybe there should be something called “Good Money” and it can only be used in the context of giving, not accumulating, hoarding and spending. Instead of today’s money which creates a terrible divide between people, maybe Good Money can be used as a bridge to connect us. My guess is that Good Money could buy you happiness, love and a whole lot more.

What are your thoughts on how to change money’s brand image?

Please note: Comments on this blog are moderated. Any comments that are focused on personal attacks, bullying, threats or overall negativity will be removed.

Posted by Kel | in Featured, Uncategorized | 14 Comments »

From Tiger To Pussy

Dec. 30th 2009

I have purposely waited to blog about the Tiger Woods controversy. I wanted to see how this sports titan would handle the crisis. And now, I can safely say that he has gone from a Tiger to a Pussy in just a few weeks.

I mean honestly, where the eff is Tiger? For someone known for his unwavering focus and ability to come from behind (no pun intended) to win a title, he has totally missed out on an opportunity to deal with this crisis head on.

Say what you want about Mark Sanford’s ramblings about finding his soul mate or John Edwards’ unthinkable act of cheating on his terminally ill wife. At least when their cats came out of the bag, they took a “suck it up” pill and fell on their sword for the entire world to see. Aside from a carefully worded post on his website using confusing words like “transgressions,” Tiger has yet to come out of the woods.

If Tiger had a PR firm worth the millions I am sure they are being paid, why aren’t they telling him to do the following?

  1. Hold a press conference and take full responsibility for his actions.
  2. Disclose that there were X number of other women who he had affairs with who have not been identified. He needs to uncover everything so there is nothing left to keep the story alive.
  3. Announce that he is going into rehab for sex addiction. Addiction is the only way to explain his reckless behavior. No human being in their right mind — particularly a high profile celebrity — would think that he or she could get away with such an ongoing and visible laundry list of affairs unless there was some sort of addiction. By the way, I think Vegas now needs a new tagline because clearly “What goes on in Vegas does not stay in Vegas.”
  4. Apologize to his family. Acknowledge that no woman on the planet deserves to be treated the way he has treated his wife Elin. He is a donkey and if the universe truly had its way with him, he will never get laid again.

There is no way he can stuff this genie back in the bottle so he needs to address it immediately. This will not just blow (no pun intended here either) over. The longer he waits, the more his reputation will deteriorate to the point of no recovery. At this point John Daly looks like a saint compared to Tiger. The public is capable of forgiveness when someone takes responsibility for his or her actions. Think Martha Stewart. However, when someone denies, or even worse, sticks his or her head in the sand, the public will keep the controversy alive and continue to ridicule. Think the Catholic Church.

Tiger needs to put this nightmare to bed as quickly as he can for himself, his family and his fans. If he ever wants to be a winning golfer again, he needs to take the spotlight off him ASAP. I don’t care how talented you are or how laser-like your focus is, having a bunch of drunken golf fans screaming at you on the course will ruin anybody’s game. I get almost giddy thinking about the one-liners:

  • “Hope you get it in the hole big guy!”
  • “Pull out your big wood!”
  • “You can use your wedge on me any day stud muffin!”
  • “18 holes are better than one!”
  • “Can I borrow your cell phone, I need to text a stripper?”
  • “I hear you play well in the rough!”
  • “Drive those balls like you did in Vegas!”
  • “Just do it…with your wife!”

Do you think Tiger will ever be able to salvage his reputation?

Posted by Kel | in Featured, Uncategorized | 16 Comments »

Bad Agency Karma

Aug. 28th 2009

I live my life under the belief that “no deed goes unnoticed, no debt goes unpaid.” Simply translated this means doing good things will bring positive things into your world and being a dick will come back to haunt you, as life’s pendulum swings back and bitch-slaps you when you least expect it. Although I have no formal religion in my life, this guiding principle influences my actions in both my personal and professional worlds.

To say PR agencies have a bad reputation is an understatement. It’s unfortunate that the bad behavior of a few PR agencies/people has affected the reputation of an entire industry. We can sit around and whine about it or we can conduct ourselves in a manner that changes people’s perspectives.

I am going to put a big-ass, stinky turd on the table. The scenario goes something like this:

An agency puts financial growth ahead of everything: ethical behavior, employee happiness, client satisfaction, This agency chases new business like whore in Vegas chases a John. They trample over anyone and anything in their path, fiercely focused on the prize of landing a cache piece of new business — one that will somehow validate their importance as a playa’. They look like the teenage girl trying to come between a boy and his existing girlfriend. When the targeted client communicates they are happy with their existing agency, the agency on the hunt starts to sling mud to attempt to create fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD) about the client’s existing agency. Therein lies the biggest tragedy of all — in doing so the whore agency adds fuel to the fire of the negative perspective that exists within our industry. They become more of a PR-attacking terrorist than Michael Arrington could ever dream of being.

It’s time to stop the madness and get your self-centered, egotistical-driven ass on the high road. I suggest the following to ensure good karma:

  • Never — under any circumstances — try to come between an agency and a happy client. A happy client/agency relationship is good for our whole industry because that client now becomes a repeater and amplifier of how positive a PR agency experience can be.
  • Compete on results vs. trash talking. If you are in an agency review, scream to the high heavens about the great results you have delivered existing clients. Look to win the biz based on those results versus slamming your competitors. You are hurting everyone, including your own agency, when you verbally shit on a competitor. And remember, what goes around comes around — last I heard, getting shit on sucks.
  • Evolve your business. Web 2.0 has changed everything in the PR world and it’s fantastic news. Immerse yourself in it, so you can compete successfully based on the merits of your core competencies instead of acting like a ‘Ho by pimping yourself at the expense of a competitor. Moreover, evolve so these PR terrorists won’t have any more eff-ups to point to when they put us on the dirt-bag short list that includes child molesters and Michael Vick.
  • Proactively turn a prospect over to a competitor. Yes, you read that correctly. Try doing something completely selfless and something most businesses on the planet would never do. The good karma that flows from that single act will be overwhelming.
  • Although most agencies would never admit it, there are agencies they respect and admire. When you lose a piece of new biz to one of those great agencies, tell the client they made a great decision and that you would have hired that agency if you were in their shoes.
  • Let your agency’s reputation and the results you deliver drive new business to you versus chasing any tail you can get like a horny drunk right before last call. The model is simple: Deliver great results for your clients and they will refer other clients to you at a rate no full-time, competitor-bashing Biz Dev person could ever achieve.
  • Never act like the anonymous, industry-slamming, pussy “PR Veteran” did when commenting on a Silicon Alley Insider post about a PR agency. (His comment are #11 & #13). If you insist on slamming another agency have the balls to do it under your real name. The bad karma this dink weed will get as a result of his actions will leave his head spinning.
  • Evaluate your success on non-financial metrics like employee happiness and client satisfaction. As soon as you stop worshiping the alter of the almighty dollar, you will find ethical behavior becomes core to your DNA and good karma will be on your side.

Life is about karma. Even Earl figured that out. Our industry could use a few more Earls and a few less Joys.

What do you think?

Posted by Kel | in Featured, Uncategorized | 15 Comments »

It’s “Agency” Not “Slavery”

May. 30th 2009

Before you read this post, you need to view the YouTube video The Vendor Client Relationship In Real World Situations. I laughed my tail off when I watched it because the execution amplifies the delusional approaches some companies attempt when it comes to paying for work/services from agencies. I can’t imagine there is anyone who has worked at a creative agency that has not had a company try to use any of the following arguments for not paying and/or reducing fees:

We don’t have it in our budget: Oh really…then what the eff are you doing standing in front of me and asking me to to do work for you? Last time I checked we didn’t have a sign outside our office that said “Free Marketing Services.”

We want everything but can only pay for a portion: Didn’t your mother teach you that you can’t always get what you want…and if she didn’t, The Rolling Stones should have. Here’s an idea, use your brain and put together a plan within your budget. I’m pretty sure that’s what you were hired to do…or did the employment ad say “Looking for someone to take our marketing budget and build a marketing plan that costs four times that amount.” I’m gonna let you in on a secret — agencies were not put on this earth to make up for client budget shortfalls.

I can get it cheaper from <insert name>: You get what you pay for homey. This week I actually had someone tell us she could get a logo done by her friend who is an “artist” for less money. Good luck on that one sista’. If you want to have someone who is good at pottery design the iconic image for your brand then you go for it!

I can pay more next time: Ummm…no you can’t and you won’t. There is not a company on the planet that will go from having a laughable marketing budget to a well funded one. Why? Because some schmo — usually the CFO that allocated the budget — thinks spending on marketing is wasteful and that’s why you were given an inadequate budget to begin with. That person’s perception will never evolve. Remember these people wouldn’t know a kick-ass marketing campaign if it kicked them in the ass.

Let’s use this project as a test: In other words, “if you do well with this project that we are paying jack shit for, we will give you more work and pay fairly for it.” Honestly, do they expect that person from the agency to jump up and down while clicking their heals and clapping their hands to squeal, “That sounds great! I love tests! When can we get started!”

This is an opportunity: No, it’s not. Spending a month in Darfur is an opportunity. This is a screw job. It won’t be long before you question why you bent over to pick up the soap.

I ordered three but only used one: This one always makes me wonder how much crack is actually smoked on the job. The agency is retained to do three separate projects which they complete. Something happens inside the company — usually a budget reduction — that only allows them to execute one. As a result, they now don’t want to pay the agency for the other two that they now won’t be able to use. And really…why should they…I’m pretty sure agencies exist for the sole purpose of absorbing every budget reduction that hits a company. Pass the crack pipe dude.

Show us how to do it so we can do it in-house next time: No problem. I’m happy to take my intellectual property that was developed over many years and give it to you so you don’t hire us again. <visualize two thumbs up with a big grinning face>

Wikipedia defines slavery as a form of forced labor in which people are considered to be, or treated as, the property of others. I’m sure every employee working at an agency reading this post just shit a Twinkie at how accurately that definition describes their world when it comes to some clients.

What’s an agency to do? It’s quite simple:

Make sure your pricing is fair: Always fair. Don’t raise it if you think the client can pay more. I believe you get what you give. By giving fair pricing you will receive it from the vendors you deal with.

Walk away from every situation described above: Seriously. Without exception. Don’t compromise your integrity or the value you deliver. Yes, it’s a tough economy but acquiescing to any of the above scenarios is unhealthy because you are being used and because you then become an enabler to this dysfunctional behavior.

If they are rude or bullying, laugh in their face: Sometimes the person at the company seeking your services is just the messenger in the above scenarios. Often times they are being told to say those things by someone else. In those cases it’s important to be empathetic and respectfully explain why the situation will not work for your agency. How-effing-ever, if the person communicating the message is rude and/or tries to bully you, laugh in their face at their suggestion. Trust me when I tell you that you will probably be the first to have done it. I hate bullies. The thought of someone using intimidation to take advantage of someone sends me through the ceiling. If you can’t do it, tell them you heard Kel Kelly may be able to help them and send them my way. Haha!

Disclaimer: The good news is that the peeps who try pimping the above scenarios are the exceptions. The vast majority of marketing people seeking agency services are honest and hardworking. Quite frankly, having the opportunity to help these people is one of the many reason I and others like me do what we do.

Posted by Kel | in Featured, Uncategorized | 34 Comments »

Facebook Reality Slap

Sep. 8th 2008

I have Facebook set as my browser home page, so it’s almost always launched on my desktop. With rare exception, I’m generally on Facebook at a minimum of a dozen time a day. Like most internet users, I have been able to mentally block out the vast majority of advertising to the point where it becomes white noise and I don’t even notice it. My ability to do this is amplified by the fact that I am allergic to details and can successfully ignore this kind of minutia as easily as I breathe air.

Yesterday, in a moment of weakness, an advertisement actually stopped me in my tracks. It was an ad for surfing, something I love to do. I was thinking about how powerful it is that based on profile information and other content, Facebook can serve its ads with such relevance. They have truly raised the bar when it comes to reaching a highly-defined target audience based on granular, real-time demographic and psychographic data. For a fleeting moment I was feeling very young and contemporary because mostly young people surf…right?

Thwack! Yeah…not so much. I decided to hit the refresh button a few times to see what other targeted advertising they would serve up to this obviously hip, way cool, 45-year-old woman. Bad idea. According to Facebook, here is a list of things that I could use:

  • Rachel Ray’s Diet. How do they know I need to diet? Do they monitor my status bar and see all the stuff I eat? Remember, just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they are not out to get you. It couldn’t possibly have to do with the fact that a woman’s metabolism slows down when they they turn 40, and disappears all together at 45.
  • 4 Different Oprah Diets. Ummmm….that’s like offering me Artie Lange’s favorite diet. The point is that she’s not that thin and the fact that she has had to try four different diets mean that they are not working.
  • Epila Personal Laser Hair Removal. Apparently I will never have to shave again. Amazingly enough, this product allows me to permanently remove unwanted hair at home. The problem is it cites body locations that I don’t currently shave and I didn’t even know had hair. OK…ick!
  • Exfoliating Skin Product. Will make me feel sexy and “will have you feeling like 20 again”. Notice they don’t say “look 20 again.” Wouldn’t want to over-promise because at 45 the fact of the matter is nothing short of surgery will help get rid of wrinkles.

So basically Facebook thinks I am a fat, wrinkly, hairy woman on a surfboard. Maybe they should have served me an ad for razorblades, so I can put myself out of my misery.

Have you been served any reality slapping ads from Facebook?

Posted by Kel | in Featured, Uncategorized | 27 Comments »