Make Marketing History

The views of a marketing deviant.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006


Finding myself in the dark, wet, industrial bowels of the defunct Battersea Power Station last week, I ultimately began to notice the Chinese video art. Most of it was beyond me and, lacking explanation, seemed wreathed in pretension as does so much video art. But I was very taken by one film. Cao Fei's "Whose Utopia?"

Indeed, could there be a more appropriate setting than a redundant UK power station for a film depicting the manufacture of various light bulbs in an Osram factory somewhere in China?

Some of the mechanical manufacturing processes were rendered strangely beautiful while the mind-numbing, eye-wearying banality of some of the ultra-repetitive manual tasks was resonant with implications. And then, as the piece moved into a more surreal phase, this slogan appeared,

"But To Whom Do You Beautifully Belong?"

If that doesn't encapsulate the goal of marketers, then I don't know what does. Our customers don't belong to us, we seek to belong to them and we succeed only as long as we continue to do so beautifully.

[I foolishly didn't take a camera, but these images will give you an idea of the scale of the place - a sign informed me bizarrely that the chimneys at 315 feet tall are higher than the Statue of Liberty!]


Blogger john dodds said...

I blame blogging! I used to have a regular life, but now everywhere I go, I see marketing mantras. Do I need help?

3:55 AM, October 24, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nice to know you have a heart, John!

(Is that the plant on the cover of Pink Floyd Animals?)

7:34 AM, October 24, 2006  
Blogger john dodds said...

And I can fake sincerity too.

As for your question. Yes it is! Can't you see the flying pigs?

1:08 PM, October 24, 2006  

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