Ours or theirs?

Like Hugh I like Tony Goodson’s questions:

Cluetrain feels like ours. LoveMarks feels like theirs.

Why are the battle lines being drawn for Cluetrain v LoveMarks?

Isn’t LoveMarks trying to say the same thing?

What is it about LoveMarks that’s winding some of us up so much?

Is it Kevin’s voice in the book and on the website?

Is it that there’s an inconsistency and contradiction in parts of the book?

Why does our gut feel tell us that there’s something missing or wrong?

Part of the answer is in the distinction between broadcast and conversation. Lovemarks tries to glimpse a world beyond brands but its modus operandi is still that of the classic brand: namely it’s a broadcast.It’s the glamorous set-piece book with accompanying speeches by Kevin Roberts and plaudits by the fanbase. Sure, we can nominate a Lovemark to the website but we can’t as far as I can see use the site to question the approach. It’s interactive-lite, not the real thing.

Whereas Hugh, Tony, me and all the other blog participants in this argument have comment and trackback space: we may polemicise in our own way as shamelessly as Kevin Roberts, but our approach shows that we are more open to challenge.

So I’m still very much hoping that the Lovemarks team will accept my suggestion of a public debate so that maybe we get beyond the us-and-them approach…

9 thoughts on “Ours or theirs?

  1. Johnnie Moore

    “So I’m still very much hoping that the Lovemarks team will accept my suggestion of a public debate so that maybe we get beyond the us-and-them approach…”

    Don’t hold your breath, Johnnie. Like you said, their conversation is one-way.

    Besides, they just spent 5 years and millions of dollars inventing and promoting the concept. You think they’re going to risk it all just to keep a few insignificant bloggers happy?


    Well I will keep breathing Hugh! And at least you seem to want to talk to me. I guess us insignificant bloggers should stick together eh?

  2. Stanley Moss

    This discussion hands Kevin the opportunity to now tell the world, “Isn’t it great that people are so passionate about Lovemarks? That’s excatly what I meant for it to do all along.”

    I suspect he will never opt for a public debate. His worldview was shaped by his days in advertising, controlling messages. So I say, Let the clamour continue.

  3. Tom Asacker

    Want to drag him into the brawl? Drag Tom Peters in! Go to his blog – http://www.tompeters.com – and challenge Tom to bring along his pal Kevin. Get a little firery – in a pseudointellectual fashion – and then dare Peters to ignore you. Go ahead bloggers. I dare you. I double dare you!

    If this doesn’t work, I’ll eat every branded food in Kevin’s book!

  4. Evelyn Rodriguez

    Stanley, never say never. No one’s worldviews are set in concrete (unless that’s their choice) and I’ve read enough of Kevin’s work to be certain that he is quite capable of growth and evolution.

  5. James Cherkoff

    Thanks so much Stanley. Now re-reading this thread I think Tom Asacker hit on a good idea. I think the way to make sure Kevin is listening is via Tom Peters. I don’t have that many mentions myself but it sometimes takes me even weeks to see a citation/reference online.


    I don’t think Love Marks offers anything new at all.

    If you scratch under the surface of Love Marks you find the advertising industry’s infrastructure as it’s been for the last fifty years. That’s Big Agencies using Big Media to shouting about Big Corporates to the rest of the world.

    Scratch under The Clue Train and it’s a different set of foundations. Namely, a networked world where every voice is equal and shouting loudly doesn’t mean anyone will listen. In fact, it just makes people run away or block you out.

    Kevin Roberts is welcome to keep his Love Marks. I’m not interested.


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