Thursday, October 26, 2006

Good and bad personalization

I found two examples of personalization in commerce, one good, one not.

A new pen - yes, the writing instrument - from OfficeMax has launched a massive (apparently) ad campaign in search of a "better handwriting". Well, with cursive being a lost art and all, one could argue that our writing techn(nique)ology is going to change dramatically over time. We are the first generation that will choose HOW we give information to our ancestors. Anyway, that's a speech for another time. This ad was cool, using flash and inserting handwriting that I wrote on a postage paid card. I was pleasantly surprised to see my scribbles in the animation, despite the tongue in cheek 'science':

Free Image Hosting at

Contrast this to the individualized sayings that are now being printed on my pringles. What? I know 100% of our food is machine processed and engineered, but do you have to remind me at every bite? At least put something interesting on them, I don't really care about mass-music trivia. I urge the food scientists out there, get together with your marketing people and make something better. I'd love to see the ingredients listed on the ship, or how about the calorie content? That would be something.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Different than usual

I am not one to use this space to rant (and I haven't used it much lately), but here is my take on a Craigslist phenomenon that I can't stand.

The free listing for a "bag" of stuff. If it's in a bag, that might be the first reason you haven't been using it. If you just put it there, so what? I'm not coming for the bag -but if you are somehow trying to sell me something, the "bag" fact makes it seem totally against my expenditure of time to come get it. Even better, you have taken the time to list the contents of the bag, and I'm pretty sure something like a TV wouldn't even fit in a bag to begin with! So, will you be giving me a bag on the side? That might make it worth my while.

Example listing:

I have two big trash bags full of stuff I need to get rid of:

Plastic Totes

and tons more! I am located in Sharon, MA. I would like to get rid of this stuff tonight. If you'd like to pick it up, please reply with your estimated time of arrival. I will email you back, letting you know I'm going to put the bags outside and also to give you the address.

Why not just remove the bag from the equation and forget didn't excite me even for a second, ok? I'm still on the lookout for the empty bag listing as a followup...yes, they are reusable.

So, how is that for worthless blogging?