Filed under: Comment
Yes, you read that right, I’m on another holiday.
Worse, I’m on another national holiday.
Seriously, how does China actually make any money?
But just when you thought you couldn’t be more flabbergasted/angry, I should inform you that this holiday lasts until next Wednesday.
The only good news is that means there’s no blog posts till Thursday, but still, even I am starting to get embarrassed with all this, but not embarrassed enough to actually turn them down, I note.
Anyway, what this means is that I’m giving distant ‘friends’ a little advanced warning to start packing their bags and selling their house because there’s more than a good chance that I’ll be turning up on one of your doorsteps in the next day or so.
Right, now that’s out the way, I want to talk about this:
That print ad – as you can see – is for Parker Pens.
Putting aside that in this day and age, it seems utterly mental that a pen manufacturer would do a big ad campaign, the fact is this ad was run in Singapore in the [I think] late 70’s/early 80’s.
But that’s not what I find interesting, it’s the fact they’re promoting their ‘pen-pal’ community.
Now given there are people on here who probably are so young, they don’t even know what a pen is – let alone a pen-pal – what you should know is that pen-pals were basically a bit like Facebook – or Twitter – except on a much, much smaller scale and with the swapping of information that was actually interesting and valuable.
The reason I am saying this is because:
1. It is a great strategy … designed to drive sales [be it pen or cartridge refill] brand differentiation and emotional value.
2. It highlights the ‘social’ approach to marketing that certain digital types like to think they invented, has been around longer than many of them have been alive.
This is not meant as a slur against digital practitioners – after all, I consider myself to be one of them – it’s simply a reminder that in many cases, technology doesn’t create cultural change, it’s simply empowers efficiency of [inter]action.
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