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I wrote the preceding paragraph to illustrate the intellectual bankruptcy of what I call “Dinosaurspeak”. That rather sociopathic combination of being completely focused on customer benefit and yet completely selfish at the same time.
And yeah, if it doesn’t work on gapingvoid, it ain’t going to work on your product, either.
What is interesting to me is that this style of language was pretty universal only a few years ago. Sure, you had a few mavericks out there stirring things up, but most external business communication was pretty much stuck in firehose mode.
When markets become smarter and faster than the companies servicing said markets, language changes. Of course it does.
[Originally posted November 5th, 2004.]
Thanks. As time goes on, maybe we can tell stories that interest people instead of barfing on them.
Actually, John, some people will pay big money to get barfed on.
Not that I’m speaking from personal experience of course…
“THOUGHT: the future of advertising is clients increasingly asking their agencies to help re-invent not just their brands, but their actual companies. The future is agencies being increasingly unable to deliver on this.”
Why hasn’t anyone been paying attention? That is where we are.
The client market in many cases is also faster and smarter than the agency, etc.
I am against anti-dinosaur speak in theory, but something about it makes me feel comfortable. Too much is no good, but a little bit ain’t bad.
Building traffic becomes a trmendous amount of work, especially when its not your day job. I also don’t think overmarketing works that well – as you are saying.
It seems you have to take sort of a “build it and they will come” approach to this thing, otherwise it stops being fun and starts smelling a lot like work.
Honestly, I read the first paragraph and my heart jumped in my throat that you had been gobbled up by a giant old-world media company and had just been replaced by a team of staff writers. or a staff of stickbugs with bayonets at a keyboard. same difference.
Good call on the ditching of dinosaur speak. It’s tome for some genuine talking on these boxes we’ve set up.
Hugh, how would you rewrite the first paragraph then?
I just like this cartoon, does it have anything to do with dinosaur speak though?
This is a phenomenon I saw when I was in the US. Every advertisement, starting from banks and ending in medicines follow the same pattern – dinosaur speak. I was surprised, since back home in India, ads are never like that. Considering the “difference” in the audience, who are ostensibly well informed, I was surprised to see that here. Now I got it. It is just herd mentality…
There are *so many dinosaurs* out there. sometimes dealing with them feels Sysifusian (if that’s a word.)
I’m glad I don’t have to pay you a commission every time I quote this cartoon.
i read the first paragraph and nearly had a heart attack! thank god the following bits explained!