Smart people say modern advertising is about sustaining a dialogue with the consumer. Fair enough. So, over the airwaves and through the pages, to a data-driven, inbound Utopia we go?
I'm not so sure.
I’ll happily grant that it would be foolish to assume your brand's voice is inherently the MOST interesting in this new, multi-tracked conversation. But isn’t it downright lazy to think you can get away with being the LEAST? An audience is still fundamentally that: human beings to be charmed, entertained, provoked, flirted with, and yes—absolutely—listened to. But before all that "connecting," don't you still have to give them something to talk about?
Obviously, I have some opinions on the matter. And when I saw my name on today’s square of the blog calendar, I decided to use it to comprehensively unburden myself at your expense. Lucky for both of us, someone older and much wiser beat me to it. Though it was re-tweeted on our feed last week, there’s a post by business hall-of-famer Luke Sullivan that deserves an encore spotlight.
So let’s make a deal. I spare you umpteen more self-preserving paragraphs on the subject, and, in return, you click on this drum-tight, insight-laden, pretense-free summation of all that's true in modern marketing. Trust me, no one will ever argue that you didn't get the better end of the arrangement.
Besides, all I can offer in response to Sullivan’s homily is an "Amen" and personal benediction. Namely, that during my own twelve years in this industry, everything and nothing has changed. That story matters more than ever. And that telling a good one is all I've ever wanted to do.
 Yes, I could have scrambled to write on a different topic when I found this ground had already been tilled. But yesterday there was snow, and a fire, and Wendell Berry to be in awe of. I was, as Sullivan says, Being a vegetable, not Selling them.