Recent Posts

Fishing The Concrete Abyss

I am from LA. And I liked to fish when I lived there. But even I had no idea, nor any inkling of a possible idea, that anglers would ever cast a fly into the LA River. This reminds of the times in my youth where I would ask my father “Are there fish in there?” at every site of a lake or river.  My dad always answered, “If there is water, there are probably fish.”  Maybe that’s why I love fish (and fishing) so much…give the creatures a bit of water and they will be there.  Even in the LA River. I only wished when I crossed it hundreds of times in my youth, I would have thrown a line.  But maybe that would have kept me from moving to Montana (doubtful)! This does go to show that there are hidden markets everywhere–even for urban concrete river fishing. L.A. River Fishing from Meghan Mccarty on Vimeo. Sign Up For Updates: Hit us with your email and stay in touch...we never share it (but we do share great... read more

Marketing the Mundane

Sitting at the coffee shop the other day with a buddy I decided to not over-caffeinate on this Saturday morning, but switch to water instead.  Thankfully the coffee shop is progressive enough to have a water dispenser sitting out with nice cool water.  That’s when I saw the sign above on the water dispenser.  I read it quickly and thought, “Cool! Fresh mountain stream water.”  Then I realized…the water in question is tap water.  The same water that comes out of my old pipes in my old home. Was this dishonest to talk up the local tap water?  That’s was the question I asked myself.  Then I realized this is a great example of promoting the most mundane things we do in the marketing space.  But it is also one of the trickiest things you can do.  Should you, as well, look at a similar strategy?  Be careful, because some consumers might think it is stretching the truth or, even worse, dishonest. So how do you know if you can market your own mundane? Here are a couple things to keep in mind: Is it true?  In the aforementioned case, the municipal water supply in Bozeman, Montana is mountain water from Hyalite Reservoir.  I have been there and it is a beautiful place and the water is about as upstream as it gets in the US.  And the water is filtered at the store.  But in your case, make sure it is 100% true.  Not mostly true…fully true. Is it clever? Hell, it made me stop and read it twice.  And think.  That is mind capture when you are marketing the mundane.... read more

Nothing Goes Away (What it Means That Technologies Last Forever)

Interesting thing happened the other day.  I was listening to a really cool talk between James Altucher and Kevin Kelly, the founding executive editor of Wired Magazine.  You can listen to it here.  They were talking about the history of technology, and Kelly rung out with something that was incredible to me.  He said, “No technology has ever died.”  Basically, his point was that technologies are produced forever, albeit in different quantities. To illustrate his point he even suggested that there are more people who make arrowheads today than during the times where native cultures ruled the earth.  That seems incredible to me (if its true and, what the hell, let’s say it is).  A technology that has been usurped by numerous other technologies for centuries is still practiced by more people. This, of course, got me thinking about the implications of never-ending technologies.  And not the manufacturing implications (that is fascinating as well as people still fire up plants to make typewriters), per say, but the notion of our culture always looking for the next thing–the next great paradigm. We seem to disdain anything from a different era like it was created by a lower life-form.  But, I think there are some interesting discussion points from this notion that nothing goes away. Don’t underestimate nostalgia.  The fashion world since the 1960s has been revolving like a door.  Even the hipster “movement” (still don’t know what to call it) harkens back to an era much closer to the Victorian than our current generation.  So we don’t always have to have an original thought.  Sometimes recapturing an older idea for a new time can... read more

Right Idea, Wrong Time (Hint: isn’t the right idea)

So you are working on that project.  You know the one that is already late and already not as great as you hoped it would be.  Well, the finish line is in site.  It is so close you can taste the celebratory beer at the local brew-pub. Then, the email comes in or the call comes in or the text sound rings on your phone.  “Hey, is that thing out yet?  I just had one thing to bring up.”  Yep…the last minute change. Most of the time, change is good.  I was just walking in my hometown and noticing all of the new buildings going up or the new businesses coming in, sometimes at the expense of older establishments.  New ideas, new people, new philosophies are great.  They expand the idea base and bring out the most creative thoughts. However, new ideas at the wrong time–and in this lesson, wrong time is mostly at the last minute–often drive to the antithesis of this end result. Often that idea that is “right” leads to a less successful product, campaign, or idea.  It leads to confusion, lack of team confidence, derailment and one more interesting thing: while introducing one idea at the last minute, that takes away the opportunity to refine another idea or the piece in whole.  We don’t live in a world without deadlines (although many of those are manufactured–a topic for another time).  A deadline is really the time when something goes out, because it should go out.  And because there is only so much time in a day, there is only so much time before something has to be put out... read more

Goodbye, Old Friend

When I was a kid, I liked to tinker.  I wasn’t exactly the next Galileo or Edison, but like most of my friends, we liked to build things, blow things up and build them again.  My favorite things to build were model rockets, but all sorts of things came out of our basements. One of my biggest allies for all of my creative outlets: Radio Shack.  The retailer was famous for always having those random wires, batteries, switches and other electronic gadgetry and gizmos.  The kinds of things that took the vision and dream to the finish line. But we are losing Radio Shack.  This from Buzzfeed: The company, which operates more than 4,000 stores, said in a statement that it will sell between 1,500 and 2,400 of its U.S. stores to an affiliate of hedge fund Standard General called General Wireless. Up to 1,750 of those locations will host a Sprint “store within a store,” as per the statement. RadioShack said the rest of its stores will be closed following liquidation sales. The company said it will update a restructuring portion of its website with a list of stores that will be closing once it knows more. It has a long list of stores that may close on the website. For future generations of tinkerers and inventors, they no longer have that friend to rely on.  They will no longer have Radio Shack.  Sure, there is Amazon (which I have heard sells a lot of stuff) and other e-tailers.  But Radio Shack was the place to ride your bike or your skateboard and devise your next great invention.  You... read more

The Timeless Genius of Space Jam Website

Do you remember Space Jam, that iconic movie from the 1990s starring Bugs Bunny and Michael Jordan (how weird does that sound)?  Well, what if I told you the website for the film is still active?  And what if I told you that it is the same website from 1996?  No changes.  The same glorious site. This is hardly news.  There have been reports about this site still being active for years.  I just discovered it, though, and it is transfixing.  It is like a time machine–like you were transported to a web version of Lost.  Only this one is sponsored by one of the largest media companies in the world. What can this time machine teach us?  I think it can show us some timeless lessons of content and promotion. Relevant content is always king.  I actually sort of hate the statement “Content is King” as I think it is over-used and off-base.  But, this site is packed with awesome content.  From photo galleries to animation sketches, this content is interesting and relevant to the fanbase.  I can only assume that the 1000s of people online in 1996 gobbled up the content. Embrace (multi)media for even more devotion.  This thing is amazing in so many ways, but the one thing that I keep going back to is all of the media it links to for downloads.  Long before YouTube–hell, even long before Napster–this site was sharing multimedia content with its fans. Extend the brand with giveaways.  The Space Jam site offers up all sort of things to keep you connected with the film–and the brand.  If you check out the “Stellar Souvenirs” portion... read more

About Me name is Rich Hohne. In short, I am long time marketer and angler residing in Bozeman, Montana. Therefore, I write about that stuff sometimes. And other stuff other times.

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