Girls with Big Noses Make Great Actresses

Everybody thinks they know advertising and can provide us with a critique of what’s good and what’s not.  Rarely do I hear criticism that shows consumers understand the strategies we employ to get messages across. More often than not people evaluate commercials based on entertainment value.  We don’t. I recall shortly after we had begun… Read More »

The Cop Is a Canadian Too!

I was driving along on a city street in my car, speaking, hands free, to a friend in California.  As we were talking an ancient Ford Model T pulled in front of me. The Model T was in amazing condition and it toodled along in front of me as we pulled up to a light… Read More »

Me and Koolio Down in the Jungle

It was the middle of the summer of 1978, I had just taken a job working with Grey de Venezuela, an advertising agency in Caracas, Venezuela. The appeal to me was for some control.  I had been working in massive agencies in New York City where I was just another brick in the wall.  In… Read More »

Never Introduce a Product Without the Product

On October 17, 2018, the Canadian government legalized cannabis.  The federal government left it up to the provinces to figure out distribution but it seems like no one really did the marketing calculations right. In Ontario, for example, orders are going unfilled despite a move to throttle demand by limiting distribution until next April.  The… Read More »

How Mustaches Can Screw Up Commercial Shoots

In honour of November being Mustache Month for Prostate Cancer, here are two stories about how mustaches have screwed up commercial shoots for me. First case was a Mr. Clean commercial we shot. It was a typical Procter & Gamble commercial. Lady of the house uses Mr. Clean to leave her house looking bright and… Read More »

The Day the Junos Went Public

The Juno Awards was an annual private music industry awards ceremony for insiders, wearing tuxedos and gowns, until 1995. The organization that put it on was the Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS). They had this crazy idea that they should be making money from it rather than losing or at best breaking even. Enter Jacques… Read More »

Narcissism of Small Differences

How many times have clients asked us to change fonts, change colour shades, change layouts… I couldn’t count every time this has happened.  Small adjustments get deemed important by those suggesting them.  And in conversation become more and more important.  Sometimes it allows people to think they have made some impact on the project. It… Read More »