Today we have an astonishing lesson on how simple it is to do marketing at the highest level. 

Here’s the backstory: The Gillette company just released a video about curing men of our more aggressive tendencies. You know. Toxic masculinity.

But that’s just the MacGuffin in this story. Not worth getting distracted by. After all, the controversy will be long forgotten in a month.

What is so interesting, though, is another company’s video response. We seldom see this kind of engagement playing out in real time.

You’re about to discover how to launch or revolutionize your own company by releasing just a single video…the simplest kind one can make.

Maybe get a hot cup of chai. Then take a deep breath and hit play…

Links to the videos mentioned above…

    20 replies to "How to Launch a Brand With a Big Bang"

    • seun

      very informative dissection of these videos

      • Steven Washer

        Thank you, sir. We try to be even-handed. 🙂

    • Marco

      Thank you Steven, you are always inspiring. Wondering if you have any tips to promote a Indiegogo campaign.

      • Steven Washer

        That’s certainly a good application for these ideas. And it will take up a video to go over them. So we’ll do that.

    • Richard Mowrey

      Whatever time was committed to this special video was well worth it. Superb, insightful message dissection and analysis plus terrific video production (smoothing and soothing effects)…to effectively communicate and support the concluding comments. The Master at work…again!

      • Steven Washer

        Thank you for the kind words, Richard!

    • Alan Clark

      Thank you Steven. Wow! I thought you treated that really really thoughtfully and sensitively. Going to have a think about what I might have to say. It might be based on my next blog that challenges conventional management thinking on performance appraisal.

      • Steven Washer

        That area is RIPE. Good luck, Alan!

    • neal

      Curious to your thoughts on the use of “stock footage” for B-roll type things to improve production value. If I thought it added a lot of value a $150 annual subscription might be worth the money spent. Personally for the stuff I’m doing, graphics with supporting information are more valuable to the things I create. But I can see if I were creating ads either for TV or YouTube the stock footage might be worth it.

      What is your take?

      • Steven Washer

        If you go back to last January on this blog, you’ll see 10 videos I created as a series called the Tao of Success. They were entirely based on stock footage. It was great fun making them and I think people enjoyed them. I don’t like using stick footage for ads, but I do think it helps in these kinds of videos. The value is in finding the right footage to add a layer of meaning to your text. So in the right circumstances, I’m obviously a fan. 🙂

        • Neal Watson

          Thanks, I get what your saying. Sometimes the emotions conveyed in the stock photos speak louder than any words being said on the track.

          Have any recomendations for stock footage providers to consider?

          My apologies for taking this off on a tangent.

          • Steven Washer

            Not at all. For video footage I like For still images I like, but there are many others.

    • Walter Psotka

      Well done Stephen …. you’ve got me thinking in overdrive !
      You and your advice have become my trusted brand !

      • Steven Washer

        Very kind to say. Thanks, Walter.

    • Wynn White


      You’ve done it again–inspiring me to inspire people!


      • Steven Washer

        Great to hear. Thanks, Wynn.

    • Asa Hershoff

      Love your work Steven, but this is really missing the moral point. Gillette truly represents what can go wrong with the male (or female). These folks, whose full time, life time gig is to manipulate the minds and hearts of others—for profit and personal gain—did not wake up in the morning and wonder how they could better humanity! They followed the lineage of Edward Bernays (that every marketer and every consumer should study), social engineering, deception, playing to fear, doubt, hatred and so on. They exploit an important social issue, get on a controversial bandwagon, solely to fool others for profit. This is the dark side of men, or of humanity in general. The content is irrelevant in this case. Its intent demonstrates the real problem. This is a trillion dollar industry devoted to lying, that somehow we are now all accustomed to. Incidentally, fake news and identity politics is only a natural follow up to the Lying Industry.

      • Steven Washer

        I can appreciate the intensity of your feelings about this. Can you see how those feelings were meant to be stirred up by the players behind the scenes?

        In this case, the marketers were a little ham-fisted, but often they get away with it because we don’t notice it.

        We should be happy, not angry, that Gillette did what they did in such a sloppy way. Reality seldom presents such clear opportunities to see into our own reactions, our own hearts, so that we could sense, if only for a moment, how our energy is let loose into the world to create our reality, wherever we go, long before we get there.

        Yes, our feelings are mostly energy. And when aren’t aware of it, they can control us. When we are in chaos, that chaos energy goes out and creates disagreeable circumstances for us to walk into, so we can say “This has never happened before!!” when it happened last week and the week before. Same feeling, different circumstance; just time-shifted enough for us to miss that we have been the ones in charge all along.

        This particular manufactured furor was designed to coerce us into taking a moral position where one, as you have pointed out, does not exist. The furor itself is what the company seeks. You saw that. That was grace, Asa.

        The reaction by PEOPLE was a real potential lesson; a business lesson. If a company doesn’t learn it, it will be because of their refusal to acknowledge reality.

        I don’t see that I’m missing the moral point because I didn’t take one of only two permitted sides that was set up for me to take. Who makes up the choices? Yes, the last thing I would have been trying to do was make a moral point.

        The point of my video was to look beyond what the marketing magicians tried to make us feel. Only a less dualistic perspective allows for a more unifying lesson. If I missed that in your eyes, I hope this helps clarify what I was trying to say.

    • Edgar Wong

      During the turn of new year, i did a spring cleaning of people i wish to continue to listen and thus subscribe to.

      You are definitely still on my list.
      I thoroughly enjoy your work.

      • Steven Washer

        Thank you, Edgar. I’m honored to have made the cut! 🙂

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