Friday, July 31, 2009

Banksy vs Bristol Museum and why it's important

On Tuesday I visited Banksy vs Bristol Museum. It was my first time in Bristol and firstly I've got to day that Bristol while obviously spending loads of money on the city centre couldn't organises a piss up in a brewery. There were loads of signs for parking but then the signs disappeared, there were no signs for the city centre, I asked a man cleaning a lamp post. And there were absolutely no signs for the Banksy exhibition.
I gave me the feeling that Bristol is ashamed of itself and a bit embarrassed by Banksy and what he's achieved. I'm sure lots of Bristol people love what he does and how he does it, but you get the feeling that whoever is running Bristol Council can't get their heads around promoting someone who they see as essentially a criminal.

Having said all that all this just plays into Banksy's hands. He loves the fact that he's so underground no one knows who he is or what he'll do next. Guess that why I love the work so much too. No fanfare, no marketing (at least overtly) just turn up and see his work for free. He's the ultimate Guerrilla Marketer.

The two hour wait in the rain was well worth it though. Three rooms full of Banksy paintings, sculptures, animatronics and audio. For me the best bits were off-piste. He'd been give free reign around the museum, so lots of time was spent hunting through dusty cabinets no one had looked at in years in search of hidden dildos in Stalagmite displays and for sale signs on the back of ancient pottery. Most of the exhibits can't ever have been looked at quite as much as while this exhibition is on.

The great thing was that photography was allowed, here's my Bansky Photo collection.

If you get a chance must must go, it's free to get in there's just the small issue of a two hour queue.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Social Networking, Twitter, Linkedin, FaceBook and all that

When is it too soon to begin a social networking marketing campaign? Twitter, Linkedin, FaceBook et all are all the rage at the moment and lots and lots of companies are using them to great effect. But there are a lot of companies who fail to understand the strength of the opportunity and are waiting for the best time to add it to their armoury.

What they aren't grasping is that there is never a right time to enter this now. The time to enter was about 2 years ago. Yes Twitter may not last very much longer, but there'll be something else around the corner and when that comes on you should move over to it.

Social Networking is just the same as word of mouth which is proven to be the strongest form of marketing, what scares people is the technology and time involved.

Yes it can be a time vampire but it means that you're spending time speak to your customers, asking them about your products and services and listening when they tell you something is crap, taking it on the chin and fixing it. When you get down to brass tacks and speak to customers fixing their real problems that's when magical things start to happen.

All Twitter, Linkedin and FaceBook do is make the process so much quicker and direct.

So if your company or organisation hasn't started using Social Networking yet then don't hang around start it now!

Friday, July 03, 2009

Jarvis did win over Bruce at Glastonbury

This is my first post, post Glastonbury. It was a great festival this year, despite a lot of people being very apprehensive about the line up. I must admit I was one of them.

To my mind there were too many old acts who were past it by quite a way. Most of them were a lot better than I expected except Crosby, Stills and Nash who were dull and droning and went on far too long.

When it came to the big headline act on Saturday I did just as I thought I might and ducked out of seeing Bruce Springsteen on the Pyramid stage and popped over to see Jarvis Cocker on John Peel.

Sounds like this was a great move, the John Peel stage is really good because you can get pretty close to the stage plus it's covered so no chance of getting wet. The added bonus was that I got there early enough to see White Lies before Jarvis came on. Had no idea what they were like before but I'm quite a fan now.

Jarvis was his usual erudite self with quite long periods of chatting to the audience. The expected Michael Jackson mentions never appeared though and neither did the covers of Pulp tracks which I'm sure some people would have liked. He started the set with Pilchard which is defiantly one of the best tracks on the new album and then rattled through most of his solo tracks. Some nutter came on half way through and gave him a bottle of Champagne and called him a "great working class hero" he seemed really surprised at this especially as he's never really worked!

The people who did see Bruce Springsteen said that it was pretty dull and even people who were fans were pretty disappointed.

All in all an amazing festival, can't wait for next year.