davy crockett

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Fight the Machine.


Starbucks executives, always on the lookout for ways to make more money (as they should be), have, until now, sat idly watching the growth of Nespresso and Keurig. Home and office brewing of coffee in single servings it is a hot category.  A category that follows the razor blade theory…discount the device, make money on the replenishments.

Starbucks see this single brew trend as not going away and recognizes coffee bought in pods is not coffee bought at their retail stores. Sooo, they’ve decided to sell a coffee maker. In other words, they are betting against themselves and accelerating the single serve brew category.

Stop it!  This is not a line extension, it’s a cannibalization. It diminishes the mission of the brand. These machines are the enemy.  The afternoon Starbucks run, the mocha, choca, locca $6.50 morning drink, the aroma of the coffee beans and din of the cool music gone. Fight it. Go all Davy Crockett on its ass. Davy may be dead but he’s alive in our hearts and minds and he defended and reshaped a country.

Starbucks is part of the craft economy. Convenience be damned.  Starbucks needs to stand up and fight! Fight the machine. Peace this holiday season.


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Claim shoveling.

This morning while washing the coffee pot the radio was tuned to a bank commercial. Some tier-two bank with “commerce” in the name (maybe) made a service claim — something like “We treat every customer with respect.” It was one of a litany of unsupported claims that typically go into ad copy these days — not unlike spring blackflies in the Connecticut woods.  Who writes this stuff?  More importantly who approves this stuff?   The bank CEO clicked the “like” button, I’m sure.


Here’s the first rule of storytelling or copy writing: Don’t make a claim without proving it. Again, for emphasis, don’t make a claim without proving it.  By following this simple rule, you’ll find yourself with less dead air to fill – and believe me, it is dead if you are simply shoveling claims – and you just might find yourself with a strategy.

I’m a fast swimmer. Bad.
I swim a .56 in the 100 meters. Good.

Our cold pressed juices makes you healthier. Bad.
Since I started drinking cold pressed juices I haven’t had my annual cold. Good.

Filling out the application online is easy.  Bad.
Most people fill out the form in 2 minutes. Good.

Great ad writers get this premise and defend it like Davy Crockett. Unfortunately great copywriters live in very small villages and are hard to find.  Claim-shovelers are a dime a dozen. It’s bad tradecraft, it inoculates consumers against proper selling and is a blight on the business. Peace.



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