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October 16, 2014

And the “Beats” goes on

Filed under: Music Industry — Peter Arnold

This is too classic a smackdown to ignore.  This week, the marketing profession saw a textbook example of traditional marketing ideology failing to account for social media fall-out.

Last March, Bose sent the NFL a boatload of money and in return became the NFL’s Official Headphone and Headset Sponsor. But last Sunday, 49er Quarterback Colin Kaepernick wore his pink (read: breast cancer awareness) Beats by Dr. Dre headphones at a post-game press event.

The NFL, never one to let a pesky thing like breast cancer awareness get in the way of a sponsorship, slapped Kaepernick with a $10,000 fine.

So at yesterday’s press conference, Kaepernick once again wore his pink Dr. Dre’s but this time had tape over the Beat’s logo. For Beats, this must have seemed like manna from heaven covered in butterscotch sauce. First, its high-end competitor (Bose) became publicly ensnared with the NFL’s old-school, money-grubbing pettiness.  Second, Beats emerged as the choice of the rebellious types.

Guess which image plays better with the under-30 crowd?

The media coverage swirled like a tornado. USA Today: “The conversation has been stolen by Beats by Dre.”  CNet: “NFL players thumb nose at Beats headphones ban.”  AdAge: “NFL Pact With Bose Means Inadvertent Publicity for Beats.”

You get the idea.  Never mind that Dre has paid Kaepernick for years.  From a marketing perspective, and with the NFL’s unwitting (or perhaps “dim-witting” assistance), this is game, set & match for Dre.

October 6, 2014

“Pride can inspire”

Filed under: Uncategorized — Peter Arnold

One of the great professional joys of this job has been the opportunity to serve since 2008 as a consultant to Dawson & Associates, the nation’s leading lobbying firm for environmental permitting and water regulation issues.  With more than 10 retired Generals from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (including four former Commanding Generals and one Deputy Commanding General), the Dawson team has a stunning depth of experience.

But perhaps more important, they are all genuinely nice people — professional and bluff.

So it’s a special pleasure to offer this new video of our own Lt. Gen. (Ret) Hank Hatch, who was Commanding General of the Corps of Engineers during Gulf War I. Produced by the Society of American Military Engineers (SAME), the video features Gen. Hatch offering this characteristically uplifting advice: “Pride can inspire.”  It’s more than worth 10 minutes of your time: