Monday, July 07, 2008

Marketing Democracy

I came across a very interesting book today called Greater Good.  The general idea behind it is that good marketing = good democracy.  I think that's incredibly intriguing, especially considering the amount of money that is spent on marketing here (and that doesn't even include the big push that the Pentagon has made into television stations and whatnot to try and win the hearts and minds of various peoples throughout the world).  Beyond that however, the authors take it up a notch and talk about how good marketing democratizes ideas and brings things to the masses that were heretofore unseen by most people.  A classic example that I am making up on the spot is where to travel.  Fifty years ago you'd go to England, Italy, France, or somewhere in the US.  Now there's an ever growing push to go to undiscovered areas - Croatia, Thailand, Turkey, or some really exotic locales like Albania, Kosovo, or Senegal.  This is done using marketing dollars to point people towards something unique.  It's the same with any number of inventions that we didn't know about until they were marketed properly - the PC in large part because of Apple's advertising the Mac and Intel advertising the microprocessor.  In turn, this has made the companies wealthy, which has helped the economy, which helps to shore up democracy with stability and prosperity.  Take a look at the Forbes excerpts for a lot more about it.  I never looked at marketing as something to expand democracy and make it better, but it seems like the more I think about it the more it makes sense.

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