Friday, November 17, 2006

George Pulls Back The Curtain

George Parker’s Madscam: Kick-ass Advertising without the Madison Avenue Price Tag is being billed as “the book Madison Avenue doesn’t want you to read.” More correctly, it’s the book that smaller, regional ad agencies don’t want you to read. (The small shop set up by the washed up college jock who made a name for himself in the local community and then hung out his shingle and got some old fans as clients because he didn’t want to sell life insurance.)

Parker teaches the basics of advertising in a step-by-step, “how to” fashion. The market for this book is ostensibly the entrepreneur on a limited budget, and while that person will undoubtedly come away much smarter for reading this, it would also benefit those in the industry to take this little refresher course.

Fans of Parker’s over-the-top rants and bitch sessions over at Adscam will miss the colorful language liberally thrown about on that blog, but the grumpy humor still shines through in this manual.

While Parker gives ample attention to every facet of the business, his bottom line is “content is king.” Not surprising coming from a copywriter, but a mantra that applies to outdoor board as easily as it does to your attempts to market within Second Life. Or your corporate blog. Or your viral video excursion.

Of course there is the REAL bottom line driven home by Parker, which is “In the real world of your business, advertising should have one single objective: to kick your competition’s ass and sell your stuff.” Parker comes across on these pages as the friend to the entrepreneur (a smart thing, given it is published by Entrepreneur Press) and shows that he knows his audience, another key to advertising and selling. He's helping cut the expensive corners.

A start-up company will keep this book handy as they grow and likely save a bunch of money in the long run. An ad school professor might just make this required reading of his starry-eyed students out to set the world afire with their killer ideas for the next big thing.

Occassionally you'll find commenters on Parker's blog who call him things like "watery-eyed dinosaur" or "washed up old hack" or "smelly old drunk bastard" (I made that last one up) but there really is nothing new under the sun, and Parker pulls back the drapes and lets the light in.

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  • Fuck... I can't believe you photoshopped MadScam into my favorite "Advertising is a crock of shit" visual.
    And you got all the references right. The smelly old drunken bastard should rightly be attributed to my wife though. Wait, I don't mean about her... I mean that's what she calls me. Fuck, don't want to wake up with a carving knife in my chest!!
    Many thanks... The check will be delivered by a hooker of your choice.

    By Blogger George Parker, at November 17, 2006 at 11:33 AM  

  • Whatever you were going to spend on the hooker, please just add that to the check amount. I also have a healthy fear of carving knife-wielding spouses.

    By Blogger Jetpacks, at November 17, 2006 at 12:07 PM  

  • This book sounds just like what the industry needs... I live across the world in India, yet I empathise completely!
    I've been in this business - oops sorry! this art/science - long before it became a 'business'.
    I miss the honest, straight talking, confident kick-ass advertising people, environment and way of working that attracted me to advertising in the first place!
    George Parker's french and some commenters discomfort aside, I love his blog. And if his blog is anything to go by, I'm gonna make that trip to Amazon!

    By Blogger noshtradamus, at November 18, 2006 at 11:20 PM  

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