Lily Tomlin

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

When I saw that the 2008 rate for a speech by Larry Summers was $45,000 to $135,000, I got to thinking.

Out of curiosity, I started prowling the various Web sites of speakers' bureaus and came to six conclusions:

  1. It seems everybody in the world is available for speeches. Included are political and show business stars, second and third bananas, and hundreds upon hundreds of people I never heard of.
  2. All of these people—luminaries and nobodies—get fees from $1,000 to $1 million, plus expenses.
  3. I used to make a lot of speeches, and all I ever got was expenses and a plaque with my name engraved on it.
  4. I was a damned fool. I was as much a nobody as anybody else and could've picked up some dough if I'd just asked.
  5. If someone invites you to make a speech, think about asking for an honorarium at the very least, if not a fat fee, plus expenses. For Colin Powell, expenses include a private jet along with his $100,000 fee.
  6. The worst that can happen is that no money in the budget exists for fees or expenses. If you refuse, someone will replace you.

By Donna Baier Stein If you've seen "I [heart] Huckabees," you either loved or hated it. The movie talks mostly about consciousness as two "detectives" (Dustin Hoffman and Lily Tomlin) help others figure out the meaning of life. Seems to me that conscious-ness is something we marketers need to expand in these interesting and challenging days. It's been a year since Yankelovich Partners President J.Walker Smith, while giving a speech entitled "The Vision of Home: Generational Lifestyle Value," identified a "Post Accumulation Marketplace" that "want(s) intangibles, experiences and service, but no 'stuff' left over." In addition to the "stuff" we're selling, we're creating a

By Noelle Skodzinski "Wake up people!" shouts Lily Tomlin—or rather her character "Ernestine"—from the outer envelope of a recent mailing for Web communications service provider WebEx. Ernestine, who rose to stardom in the early '70s on the TV show "Laugh-In," is WebEx's corporate spokesperson. The sarcastic quipster joins the likes of Bart Simpson, William Shatner, Austin Powers and Alf on the seemingly endless list of marketing-bound pop icons. But in direct mail, pop icons seem the exception, not the rule. Are such famed faces ineffective in the postal medium? Is pop culture an abstract vagary best left to ad-agency hipsters targeting

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