This is a public service announcement on behalf of all of us who have been exposed to bad marketing and thoughtless PR campaigns.
In an age when sponsors are fighting for ad time, businesses are fighting for your dollar, and oil companies are fighting to not look like heartless, money-grubbing assholes, the marketing writer is a commodity. This writer must walk a fine line between humor and offensiveness, emotional appeal and schmaltziness, honesty and bullshit. They are often called upon to clean up messes after ill advised press conferences and other PR disasters. In order to keep the marketing writer performing at their optimal rate, you must be sure they are getting their proper feed and care. Here are some general guidelines for the care of your marketing writers.
1. Marketing Writers must get eight hours of sleep a night.
This is crucial. If your writer hasn’t had enough sleep, they may not be able to come up with the marketing plan you need to get your company out of its tailspin.Writers who have not had eight hours of sleep are prone to falling asleep at crucial moments during meetings and missing key project and strategy points. They also have a tendency to be a little “fuzzy brained” when tired. Fuzzy brain writers come up with marketing campaigns that make no sense to anyone outside of their own head. Godaddy commercials with Danica Patrick are a good example. With a sleep-deprived marketing writer at the helm of your PR campaign you could get:
“Like we had any idea that rig was going to blow. What do you want from us? Sure, we should’ve tested a solution to this kind of thing before we started building, but hindsight is 20/20.”
2. Marketing Writers must be fed every three to four hours.
A hungry writer is a cranky writer. Aside from the distracting noises of an empty stomach, actively churning out acid in search of something to digest, hunger leads to low blood sugar, which leads to evilness. I know this for a fact. If you are in a meeting with a marketing writer that has not been fed recently, and you disagree with their idea in any way, you are likely to be bitch-slapped across the conference room table. This can lead to hurt feelings, broken phones, embarassment, and lawsuits. Commercials with people that see other people turning into food are always written by a hungry writer. If you ask your marketing writer to come up with a new ad when they are hungry and cranky, this could be the end result:
“We have a new “healthy” sandwich for you to try. Actually, it’s not that healthy. And it tastes like cardboard. But if you’re hungry enough, you’ll eat it. Oh, and our competitors can kiss our asses!”
3. Marketing Writers must NOT be over-caffeinated.
Unless you want your marketing campaign to be voiced by Alvin and the Chipmunks, you must watch the caffeine intake of your writers. Some caffeine is good for your writer, but too much leads to irritability, frequent trips to the bathroom, illogical thought processes, and afternoon crashes that make the entire day a waste. How much would you like to bet that the person who came up with the BaskinRobbins ice cream cake song (you know the one) had consumed 12 cups of coffee in the first two hours of his day? An over-caffeinated writer leads to:
“This product is GREAT! I mean, I couldn’t believe the results! It was amazing! I never knew life could be like this! WOW! Buy it now!”
(Notice that this does not mention once what the product is? This kind of ad would be frenetic in style and voiced by someone who sounds like they just sucked on a helium balloon.)
4. Marketing Writers must be getting…ahem…”action.”
This is a delicate requirement, requiring discretion. There is no appropriate way to ask your marketing writer if they are getting enough action in the bedroom (or wherever they prefer). But an undersexed writer could lead to some very uncomfortable marketing campaigns. You run the risk of your ad being overtly sexual or so barren of life and joy that it makes you want to crawl under your desk and cry. A writer who isn’t getting any could write something akin to the Burger King commercial with the King and the couple and the “magic hands.” Yuck! Yes, a sex-deprived writer could give you:
“Try our big, juicy meat. We know you want it. You dream about it. You can’t stop thinking about slipping this bad boy in your mouth. You won’t regret it, we promise.”
I mean, with that kind of ad, you’ll have to wait until 10 pm to air it!
This concludes our public service announcement. Please market wisely.