Thursday, December 16, 2010

Irrelevant, Unsupportable, Inane

Apparently I'm not the only one calling out MABUSHI these days.  David Meerman Scott, of 'The New Rules of Marketing & PR' and Web Ink Now fame, eviscerated a company last week on their truly awful PR spam.  More power to you, David!

Continuing on that theme, I am highlighting the MABUSHI of this company, who are posting it in 10-foot high letters on the side of their building.

The first commenter who can correctly identify this company will get a $5 Starbucks gift card.

What's worse, just underneath this bit is yet another tag line which does a really good job of describing what they do and  for whom.

Let's break this MABUSHI down into its component parts:
Focused: On what? How do I know they are focused on the right thing?
Unwavering: Does that mean they won't listen to customers? Does that mean they won't change course even in light of overwhelming facts to the contrary?
Dedicated: To what?  Are they so focused, unwavering and dedicated to their business model that they will fail to pick up on significant changes in the industry or new market opportunities?

And then looking at this from the big picture: What does ANY of this have to do with telling someone about the value of their company or why anyone would care?  I strongly suspect that no one bothered talking to customers, prospects and other industry wags to develop this statement.  It reads more like something executive management put together to boost morale.

The following blogs aren't companies, per se, but their tag lines all do a beautifully effective job in quickly conveying their value and relevance to the reader:

Web Ink Now: Marketing and Leadership Strategies
Rocket Watcher: Product Marketing for Startups
Scoutmaster Musings: there's no tag line, just the name conveys everything it needs to convey.

Simple, clear and relevant.

That's how it should be done. Yes, it is hard.  No, it's not impossible.  Look at the core value of what your company does and just say it as simply as you can.  Please.

Next up: This offender revealed.


  1. In a nutshell its F.U.D. I think someone pulled it over on the pointy haired boss because it is totally corporate speak. I'd almost be embarrassed to work there with that on the side of my building.

    The piece that David Scott pointed out, was that the Cisco TV YouTube bit? Another one that should have someone scratching their head.

    Anyway, its McCafee

  2. The David Meerman Scott flame-o-blog was this one where he justifiably took apart Vello Systems.

    We have one vote for McAfee. What say you, audience?

  3. Hey thanks for the link love.
    I hate that everyone wants to distill things down into 3 word taglines. They are so meaningless. What's wrong with one nicely crafted phrase, huh?

  4. April,

    Had to reread your first line. ' love.' is not the same as ', love.'

    This particular three-word tag line is especially offensive in light of the one right below it, only in 2-foot high letters.