Two Decades of Suicidal Thoughts: A Client Love Story

Think back to your first real job. Remember that one old-timer who had all the great stories? 

I don’t mean the bitter guy who wore a tie with his dandruff-covered short-sleeved shirt, and referred to upper management as “The Gestapo.”

I mean the funny dude who seemed to know his shit, but also had a million great stories about the industry. He knew every client, went to all the trade shows – and talked about flying on airlines like Eastern and Pan Am. Back when they served real meals. In coach.

It doesn’t matter what you do for a living. If you’ve been in the same industry for 20 years, then you’ve heard some pretty funny things.

And what occurred to me recently is that I’m now THAT guy.

NO! Not Creepy Dandruff Guy.

I’m Funny Story Guy.

As many of you know, I use a Swiss Army knife within the context of my personal brand. The thought behind that imagery is that because I've touched so many different media channels, strategies, techniques, and creative personalities, I’ve evolved into a sort of marketing multi-tool. 

The result is that I’ve probably heard ten times the number of wacky statements and questions in meetings, on sets, in comment threads, and everywhere else that advertising and marketing people gather.

So let the fun begin!

  • We don't have a vector version of our logo but I can scan the business card.
  • Do we really need photography? Can’t we just pull it from the Internet?
  • Do you think Twitter will still be around in the next couple years? Because I really don't like it.
  • I also need a high-resolution of this HTML page.
  • Why would the page look the same across all browsers?
  • Oh, I had no idea it would be so much! My neighbor’s nephew builds websites. I'll ask him.
  • When you say "Brand," you mean logo. Right?
  • Look, I'm not sure what this means, but my wife said my content should be "repurposeable." How much more will that cost?
  • I think the name “widget" is funny. I doubt we'll need anything like that.
  • Is our website current? Absolutely. We've kept it updated with a new copyright for the past eight years.
  • Why would I need search engine optimization when my name is in the web address?
  • There's nothing I can do on the web that I can't do on the phone!
  • The Internet is just a fad, it's for porn freaks and losers. It'll eventually just shake itself out.
  • I'm not concerned that people can't find my site. I will tell them to go there.
  • We want to put rental apartments on the Internet. (This groundbreaking concept was revealed to me only after I signed a non-disclosure agreement)
  • I've got a great idea for you to put on the Internet.
  • How much does a website cost?
  • My buddy told me we should do the site in something called GeoCities.
  • What if we take out all that whiz-bang? THEN how much will a website cost?
  • I had no idea that's how much a website would cost!
  • Yeah, we need to get a website started one of these days.
  • Yeah, we need to get an e-mail list started one of these days.
  • Yeah, we need to start an e-commerce solution one of these days.
  • Yeah, we need to start putting video on our website one of these days.
  • Yeah, we need to start with the “social medias” one of these days.
  • Yeah, we need to get our website on “cell phones” one of these days.
  • Why do I need a social media crisis media plan? That's why I have a PR agency.
  • We’re letting the intern do all our social media. She has a Facebook and Twitter account of her own!
  • Why would I need a blog? My website already has a “newsroom” section on it.
  • What are bandwidth fees? I just got a letter in the mail that can't possibly be mine.
  • We took the time to register www.the-longest-URL-in-the-world-to-represent-our-company-and-we-are-forcing-you-to-use-it.net
  • We're going to "pass" on e-commerce for now until we got our store model figured out.
  • Just put our brochure online, we don't need anything else.
  • Now we realize we don't need Sharepoint. But we paid, so we’re using it.
  • If we launch an app, it must be perfect right out of the box! I don't believe in version control. It shows weakness.
  • Gradients and transitions are for people that cannot think of anything better to do with negative space.
  • Yes, I can see how that tells the story of the product, but there's no "sizzle." Can we add some woodland creatures?
  • I'll be the first one to tell you that my wife will hate this.
  • Our group wants you to know we love all the versions you presented, and agree number two is best for our needs. That being said we're going with version three, because our president says it has "gusto."
  • I don't care about pretty pictures, I want pretty metrics!
  • I don't want to sell to someone who is on Facebook!
  • No, compressing the graphics will not cost more.
  • We tweet once a day! SOMETIMES MORE!
  • We didn't get the results we wanted from our previous designer. But that cut into the budget we have for you.
  • Does the blue need to be … so BLUE?
  • I got your "Adobe file" (PDF) and we cannot open it. We don't use Photoshop.
  • So do you like the revisions?
  • Sorry it took me so long to get back to you on these edits. We're just so busy! 
  • Are you sure that's the price?
  • Wait, I have to pay you more for that copy on the website?
  • I need to be on the first page of "the Google machine."
  • Yes, we passed [your design] around at the trade-show, and didn't get many calls, I don't see how you expect us to pay for that. (Following up regarding the invoice for a completed project)
  • We're seeking funding for this project, but we KNOW it will be successful.
  • Did you get the e-mail I just sent? Can you read it to me?
  • Just put a couple more pages on the site, there's room in the navigation!
  • How many people are [really] reading our e-mails on a cell phone?
  • But what if someone takes my idea? Can I sue them?
  • I thought graphic design included printing.
  • How can you assure me that everyone on the Internet will see my site?
  • What metrics do you have to prove your re-branding will work?
  • Let me fax over my thoughts. (sent to me in an e-mail)
  • Do you barter services?
  • I love your work – but not your hourly rate.

 

Posted on July 3, 2012 and filed under Advertising, LOL, Soapbox, Storytelling.