Previous month:
October 2008
Next month:
December 2008

Veterans Day 2008

Dog tag helmet




by Brittany Vigoreaux


American soldiers sacrifice so much,

All for the freedom of our country.

Leaving their families and heading off to war,

Not knowing what the future holds.


Working day and night

Determined to stay strong.

Watching friends be killed every day

Letters from home inspiring them to keep fighting


So little is given to them

Although there is little to do,

For those who have died in war

We can still remember


Remember all the men who have died.

Remember all the battles fought

Remember all the tears families cried

Remember it was freedom the soldiers brought


To this very day soldiers are under-appreciated

Veterans Day is the day

For the dead, living, and fighting soldiers

To be remembered

$1 Billion - Online Pizza

Boy pizza Somebody should have seen it coming...a billion dollars worth of pizza sales by Pizza Hut.


If you do not read another word, go back and read the one word above this paragraph.  Then, if you STILL think social media is not for you.  Call me, we'll help you spread the word of your impending sale of the business.

Here is the story from Advertising Age.  Inside you'll read how other food companies are making big investments into social media and online sales.  One, Kraft Foods, Inc. has even developed an iPhone tool that downloads recipes and shopping lists while wandering the grocery store asles.

If you are not using these tools to connect with your customer base...please start.  It makes no difference if you are selling plumbing supplies or cheese crust!  Take this stuff seriously and for cryin' out loud if you don't know...ask.  It could boost your potential...or even better, keep you in business.

Michael P. Libbie - Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications where we get excited about the future...because it is happing now!

Thank You...

Children "Sold out!"  Last night the  world premiere of The Sparks Fly Upward played to a sold out theater.  Those who attended were treated to an emotional ride as we experienced the story of the Holocaust through the eyes of three families living and dying at the whim of mad men.

People came from some of the largest cities in the country and from tiny rural areas across Iowa.

The talent and emotion of the cast, musicians, choir and supporting personal made an impact on the performance.

Thank you to those of you who forwarded these posts, called the radio shows, made comments to the television stations and newspapers Cathy Lesser Mansfield, the creator of The Sparks Fly Upward, visited.  We are proud to be the agency of record for such a fine artistic endeavor.

Now the larger question is, "What next?"  Hang in there with us...we'll let you know!

Michael P. Libbie - Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications

The Sparks Fly Upward - World Premiere

Knacht Last March when we signed on with the musical production of The Sparks Fly Upward we had no idea of what to expect.  It's always like that with a new product, service or in this case, a musical.   Last night was the dress rehearsal and we took some publicity shots for the future.

The story line follows three German families, two Jewish and one Christian, through the days before, during and after the Holocaust.  The interesting thing about this piece is the focus on doing good rather than the "Final Solution".  It is also historicaly accurate and the detail is amazing.  While  mo st of The Sparks Fly Upward is set in a time period between 1939 and the end of World War II,  the message about standing against genocide, in our day, is very real and timely.

In addition it's "home grown".  The Sparks Fly Upward has been written by Cathy LesserShul inside Mansfield a law professor at Drake University here in Des Moines.  The production takes 20+ actors, a 37 piece orchestra, a 30 member chorus and a projected photographs of the period.

But, most of all it is compelling, gripping and hopeful. 

The Sparks Fly Upward will see it's first performance Saturday evening at Hoyt Sherman Place in Des Moines.  Coming to see the production are professionals from New York, Chicago, Cleveland and Israel. 

Sabbath We think it's got legs...hope you can come.  There are still a few tickets available for the 8:00PM show.  For here!

Michael P. Libbie - Insight Advertising, Marketing and Communications

Fear Of Progress?

Boy fear I was sitting with my friend and blog coach Mike Sansone the other day and asked him this question, "Tell me what is it that keeps people away from social media?"  His answer:


I suspect that response took me by surprise.  Always willing to look at all sorts of ways to increase business we took to blogging and social media quickly.  Mike contends that the same fear that kept people from creating websites, using the Internet now keeps them from embracing new technology to communicate with their customers and clients.

I didn't much believe him...until this morning.  On my own I went to my local Chamber of Commerce here in Urbandale to get them excited about social media.  I like these folks.  They are dedicated, busy, active and love this city.

They are also fearful...  Or at least some are.  It seems the chamber executive was tapped by the local newspaper The Des Moines Register to do a blog.  She did and the only measurable response she got was from some nut cases.  (dates, and lewd comments)  But, then again you know my issue about newspapers and anonymity. They thrive in it.  Remember there is a segment of the media that loves the bizzare.  It sells.

We think they will overcome the fear and join us in reaching out to their members and customers.

So, you know of any Chamber Types using blogs, Twitter, etc?  And, doing it well????

Michael P. Libbie - Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications



Election Lesson: "Stay On Message!"

Obama Denver I was interested in what some said following yesterdays dramatic win by President-Elect Obama and it is a lesson all of us who advertise, market or have something to sell need to remember.

It's called, "Staying On The Message". And I thought I'd offer up a couple of examples of how we think the marketing was not only brilliant but effective.

The Logo:

Twenty-two months ago the Obama campaign figured out that "Change" would be the trademark of their campaign.  It started with the Obama logo.  It was different, out of the box and, in itself, represented a change in marketing a campaign.  And,  that was just a silly logo.


The campaign never wavered.  The message in Iowa kitchens or backyards was about "change".  That message stayed the same all the way to 100,000+ rallies across the nation.  To people tired of what they had, on both sides of the political spectrum that single message had meaning.  But more important the campaign never moved away from the central theme.

New Technology:

The campaign understood the power of the Internet and the use of social media.  From Blogs to text messages to short e-mail blasts to the use of video on YouTube the campaign kept in touch with those who have rejected traditional media.  And they perfected a way to allow "two way" communication.

The Slogan as a Trademark:

Sure other campaigns had slogans.  But they never really stayed the same.  Some were about "experience" but that changed to "Experience that can bring about real change".  Or it was "Real Change" when it seemed experience alone wouldn't work.

But, in at least three of those campaigns it rung hollow.

For those of you about to suggest it was money that made the difference.  Don't fall victim to that trap.  Yes, money allowed to message to get out but there had to be a starting point.  And, if you remember the Obama campaign was not as well funded as others...many others.

What really happened, my friends, is that you have all been witness to something you can do in your business.   Find a reason or two WHY people should buy your product or service and then build on those reasons always staying on message.

Michael P. Libbie - Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications

FEMA Headed To Reno - Great Time To Market

  FEMA Reno In just a few days members of the Farm Equipment Manufacturers Association (FEMA) will land in Reno for their annual Fall Meeting.  It's a time when short line agricultural manufacturers gather together to socialize, learn and break bread with their distribution system. (Folks that sell for them...and to them.)  It's the first time in nearly ten years I'll not be there and I'll miss it.  However our client The Sparks Fly Upward is holding their world premiere this Saturday night and we've got media events scheduled from Wednesday on.

IF I were going I would gather as many owners and VPs of Sales and Marketing together and beg them to listen to the wisdom of increasing their marketing and advertising dollars during this economic recession.  

I just finished a five part series dealing with just that message.  And, gave solid rational and historical data that suggests this is NOT the time to "duck and cover" but it is the time to forge ahead and grab market share.

If you are headed that way, be safe.  And scroll down to the series.  We think you'll find it "insightful".

First Lesson - What You Should Be Doing...NOW!

Second Day - Marketing In A Recession #2

Third Day - It's The Economy #3

Day Four - Marketing In A Recession #4

Day Five - It's A Wrap - Let's Review

Michael P. Libbie - Insight Advertising, Marketing and Communications where we think charging is better than retreat!