Eric Hatch

Denny Hatch is the author of six books on marketing and four novels, and is a direct marketing writer, designer and consultant. His latest book is “Write Everything Right!” Visit him at

One of the great thrills of traveling far from home—Nairobi, Cairo, Istanbul, Hong Kong, Amman—was to wake up in the middle of the night and turn on my tiny, portable shortwave radio with a pillow speaker. Suddenly breaking through the myriad static would be “Lillibullero,” the BBC’s signature tune at the top of the hour, always sounding tinny, as though it were coming over an old 78-rpm phonograph. This would be followed by series of beeps and a voice with a very English accent coming out of the blackness of a hotel room in a foreign land: Beep ... Beep ... Beep ...

The idea that advertising agencies are recommending campaigns based on humor—and marketers are going along with it—is an act of desperation. At the end of this issue is an illustration from an upcoming Campbell’s Soup commercial that urges consumers to “Make some holiday magic.” It depicts the branch of an evergreen tree reaching through an open window and grabbing some green bean casserole. The viewer will think, “My isn’t that cute and clever,” and remember the gag, but not the Campbell Soup. Be well-mannered, but don’t be a clown. People don’t buy from bad-mannered salesmen, and research has shown that they don’t buy from

Probably not, but it's fun to try! Nov. 15, 2005: Vol. 1, Issue No. 48 IN THE NEWS Combating Critics' Pans With a Blitzkrieg of Ads If you have watched any television in New York or listened to local radio in the last two weeks, you have probably heard about "In My Life," the new Broadway musical currently at the Music Box Theater. Its commercials, after all, have been everywhere, complete with heartfelt audience testimonials, snippets of cheering crowds and mentions of rave reviews. All of which might give you the impression that "In My Life" is a hit. You would be wrong.

Cartoon Network's amazing unique selling proposition Sept. 22, 2005, Vol. 1, Issue #33 IN THE NEWS Don't touch that dial! Not unless you want your children to grow up to be clueless, sad-sack 40-year-old virgins. That's pretty much the message Cartoon Network is sending parents as it launches its new block of programming, "Tickle U," as in University: two hours of cartoons on weekday mornings that will ostensibly help preschoolers develop a sense of humor, without which they will lead a sad and lonely life. --Lenore Skenaky "TV telling kids what's funny? It's laughable." New

August 9, 2005, Vol. 1, Issue No. 20 The Passing of Peter Jennings And How I nearly met Humphrey Bogart IN THE NEWS NEW YORK -- Peter Jennings, the suave, Canadian-born broadcaster who delivered the news to Americans each night in five separate decades, died yesterday. He was 67. --David Bauder The Associated Press, August 8, 2005 I never met Peter Jennings in person, but my wife, Peggy, and I watched him nightly for many years. At one point, ABC News had a trio of anchors reporting from around the country--Jennings, Frank Reynolds and Max Robinson. As I recall, Reynolds, a splendid journalist,

More Blogs