You don’t need to go to school to learn advertising.


You don’t need anyone to teach you that crap.

Look at it up there on the TV yelling at you to buy a new Ford for a hundred and forty-four dollars down.

Who couldn’t do that?


Sing it with me: “I wish I was an Oscar Meyer wiener. That is what I’d truly like to be-e-e.”

What class could teach you to do that?

You can already talk, you can already sing, you can already stand in front of a camera and point.

What else is there?


We’ve been watching it every day since we were born.

What’s there to learn that people don’t already know?

It ain’t a mystery.

So, why teach at Brandcenter?

For one reason: Good advertising.

That’s the whole tamale.

We don’t teach advertising, we teach good advertising.

Advertising is the shrill, stupid, clumsy, lame communications that fill up our TV screens and magazines and websites, yelling at us what we already know we don’t want to know.

99.5% of advertising is advertising.

Good advertising is the exact spiritual opposite of advertising.

To do good advertising requires work and vision and knowledge and touch and wisdom and luck and all the other stuff that we’re not born with but which must be developed.

You don’t need those things to make advertising.

But you need them all and in subtle relation to each other in order to make good advertising.

We are not constructed such that receiving what we can ask for will satisfy us.

In an ad agency everybody wants to tell creatives what to do.

Planners want what they want.

The creative director wants what he wants plus a spin;  an indescribable spin–“I’ll know it when you do it”.

The brand manager wants sales to go up and a leather chair.

There’s a VP from the NY office who just came from a brand meeting in London where they want something with a squirrel in it.

And the 3 different folks from the client have 3 different ways of saying what they think their boss thinks he may want.

Don’t do it.

Don’t give anyone what they ask for.

Because not only is it a pain in the rear it doesn’t work.

Don’t try to do it, don’t fake doing it, don’t secretly do it while doing something else.

Do what’s right.

Steer not by anything anyone says but go by your lights directly at what you know is right.

Here’s why:

The client is going to judge you by the work.

Not by whether you did what he said or not.

He may hoot and holler about the conversation right then but the next week it won’t matter.


If the work sucks.

He won’t care that it was his fault for telling you what to do and how to do it.

He won’t even acknowledge that he did.

He’ll just lean back in the leather chair the brand manager covets and say about your agency “their work sucks” and fire you.