What a waste, what a waste ~ Brand Mix

Friday, October 24, 2008

What a waste, what a waste

(Ian Dury introduced by Peter Cook as the "Lionel Bart of the 70s")

I came across two different, astonishing examples of waste yesterday:

1) Food and water waste: Did you know that 50% of food that's grown and almost 50% of agricultural water is wasted? Maura Mitchell says in her newsletter: InformAction that's "stunning, but true." Waste occurs at every step in the food chain. As she describes: "In developing countries, 15-35% of food goes bad in the field, and another 10-15% is lost during processing and transportation. In the US, much less waste occurs on farms, but more occurs at retail, restaurants, and homes." That means we produce enough food and water to take care of everyone on the planet but there's so much waste from food to fork that we fall short. "Forward thinkers," Maura writes "are focused on ways to better use what we already have."

2) Marketing waste: According to a study by the Association of National Advertisers, 64% of CMOs and brand managers say their brands do not influence decisions made at their companies. Denise Lee Yohn (quite rightly) says on her blog: "What's up with that?" She goes on to say: "I’m not sure what to think of the study results — do they mean that most companies are pouring millions of dollars into marketing and advertising without really basing their business on the values and attributes they’re communicating?" David Ogilvy famously said: "Half of my advertising is wasted, and the trouble is, I don't know which half." Well, this study seems to identify a critical source of waste and, just like the food chain, suggests that there are ways to better use what's already available. In this case, companies should take advantage of brands to guide and power their business.

Ian Dury may not have have minded back in the 70s. But, at times like these, we should.

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