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April 2009
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June 2009

The "Media" - Too Little - Too Late

There are lots of old sayings that "say it".  "Well, the horse is out of the barn." or "You can't put the genie back in the bottle."  Or in this case...  "It's not the pigs you idiot!"Man Hog Head

In the rush to whip the planet into hysteria the media clung to a CDC statement early in the H1N1 frenzy that this new strain of flu had some traits associated with "swine flu". 

And the world went nuts.  Zoos (Baghdad) killed their wild boars,  Egypt ordered the slaughter of all 300,000 head of hogs in the country.  This week China...that paragon of virtue (melamine in dog food, lead in paint...) banned the import of US pork.  It seems they and Russia and others "think" humans can contract H1N1 by eating the stuff.  Meanwhile, according to Bill Northey the Secretary of Agriculture for Iowa this panic is costing US pork producers $2 million...a day.

And...the media?  With eyes wide open and in their best Eddie Haskell voice say, "Who?  Us?  We were just reporting."


But, is there the rush to correct the story?  No.  Oh, to be sure there was, here in Des Moines, an article in the Des Moines Register on May 6th by the farm editor an impact story...but the article didn't carry the same excitement and weight as bold headlines declaring a national pandemic caused by hogs.

Too little....too late for pork producers that have already seen tough times in the markets.  Too little too late to impact world view.  Too little too late...when just yesterday in an ABC radio news program there was yet another mention of "swine flu"..somebody just didn't get the memo.

Meanwhile the "anti-meat" crowd is loving it.  Bloggers are having a field day pushing the story and the false link:  "Meat...kills!"

So little guys like us write about it or we'll do radio interviews about the truth...  But it's a big hill to climb.  One that is littered with the rush to sell papers and spin audience numbers...after all it's rating season.  A little more help here folks?

Michael P. Libbie - Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications  Follow us on Twitter @MichaelLibbie or our radio show @RuralLifeRadio  our site:



So What Is It With Kim Komando & Twitter?

Right after my Sunday morning radio show (Highway 6 - Your Road to the Country) on 98.3 WOW-FM here in Des Moines we get to listen to three hours of the "Digital Goddess" -Kim Komando.  And, those of us who are "not worthy", get to hear a Pumps computer regular put down of Twitter.  Just this week it was a short rant about "...who cares if you are having a cup of coffee.."

I don't get it.

Sure, if you use Twitter to simply blab about your can be a huge time suck.  But, if you use Twitter to connect with the business world and learn and share ideas...well?

Long ago our agency embraced blogging, facebook and other social media adventures including Twitter.  We recommend this new media to our clients so they too can "be found" and carry on discussions with their target customers...real conversations while learning what is being said about their product or service.

So, Kim...lighten up a little.  We like you, think you are entertaining and...OK... even sexy in the "pumps" you're not going to give away, " matter how nicely you ask.."  Yes, we even listen to the promos.'s not for everybody...but for those of you wanting to get fast-tracked into social media it's a great place to start...and to follow us:  @MichaelLibbie

Michael P. Libbie - thanks for reading.... 



Marketing Hysteria

Going grocery Iowa now takes on a whole new meaning.  Today at the Hot women local Hy-Vee there are bottles of hand sanitizer at every check out lane.  When checking out I asked, "So, what's the deal?"  The young, cheery teenage girl behind the counter said, "Why, it's to help keep you well so you won't get sick while grocery shopping!"  The equally young man bagging the groceries looked at me and rolled his eyes.  The young lady said, "What?  You are not scared to death over this swine flu deal?"  Soon are we to see shoppers dressed...well, a little more...covered as they stroll the meat section?   Sort of like our daughter and her friend (above) modeling the latest in Summer Evening Wear.

I'll take my chances...

Meanwhile in that enlightened country we've had the pleasure of occupying for what...five years...Iraqi zoo officials killed three wild boars.  "It was a precautionary measure.", said the zoo director.

Sort of like the enlightened country of Egypt where every hog in the country was ordered killed last week.  We couldn't make this stuff up if we wanted.  Here is the story.

And Sunday morning, on the Kim Komando radio show, the "digital goddess" must have said, "Swine Flu" twenty times in a lead up to her story about how crooks are now online claiming to have a cure and/or an advance treatment just in case you come in contact with the disease.  Gosh, don't let the gang at Hy-Vee get a hold of that message.  I can see it now...  "Attention shoppers, now in isle 5...."

Never mind that H1N1 is not transmitted from hog to human.  Never mind that more people die from the "regular flu" each year than have been sickened this time out.  Never mind that there is no "advance treatment".  Never mind that this issue has put another nail in hog production in places like...gulp...Iowa.

Marketing Hysteria is big business...

Michael P. Libbie - Insight Advertising, Marketing & Communications where we shake our heads in amazement most days. or follow us on Twitter @MichaelLibbie