Posts tagged “Advertising

Brand Bail Out Meets Brand Incompetence

Let’s bail out the auto industry.

We’ve done it before and it was “successful”.  Looking back at the 1979 government-sponsored bailout of Chrysler … a few surprises.

Guess who opposed bailing out the auto industry?  It was … General Motors!  Then GM Chairman Thomas Murphy condemned the Chrysler bailout in 1979 as “a basic challenge to the philosophy of America.”

That is, GM said this was darn-near unAmerican!

Another interesting point.  All of the key ingredients that Peter Cohen said made the Chrysler bailout successful — including a new plan, new management, new technology, and some serious shared sacrifice — don’t seem to be part of the current $25 billion proposal.

The oppositions to the bailout is mounting.

The problem is, as reported in the Wall Street Journal, people just don’t trust American auto makers any more.  That is, they think that auto industry management is a joke.

My favorite quote:

“There’s the feeling that next to financial services, automotive execs are the dumbest people in the world,” said Thomas Stallkamp, a former Chrysler president who worked at the car company when it received emergency government loans in 1980.

Ah, there’s the rub.  Why do people oppose the bailout?

Because people think that auto management is incompetent.

It is a bit like Bobby Jindal — the GOP’s newest and arguably smartest face — said about the Republican Party.  Why did voters reject them?  In his words, they were fired “with cause.”

People rally around brands in trouble.  And people rally around those who suffer from a brand in trouble.

But it is hard to get people to rally around brands that are just stupid.

The Anti-Web Site Web Site

Check out Modernista! They are the advertising agency behind such brands as Hummer, Cadillac, and TIAA-CREF.

Modernista!’s non-site-site was brought to my attention by Bill Mount of Trephine Inc. via John Brodeur, both of whom are working on the new web site for the agency I work for, approporiately called, Brodeur.

In the words of Bill, Modernista! may have …

… created the first ‘siteless website’ and, in so doing, have sent the message that these are people for whom unconventional thinking is like breathing (they didn’t say ‘we’re unconventional’, they proved it in th every form of their communication). They ‘simply’ appropriated parts of the web that everybody’s already familiar with and used them to tell the Modernista! story:

* About us is on Wikipedia
* Leadership team bios are on Facebook
* The TV reel is on YouTube
* The Print Portfolio is on Flicker.

And it is all bound together by a discreet, little red banner in the upper left corner of your browser. Damn! I mean, seriously. Damn!

I don’t know if Brodeur’s going to have a “siteless website” but the Modernista! approach shows the power .. and the logical extension? .. of true social media.

I agree with Bill.