Tag Archives: Edward Bernays

Spiking Your Creative Problem-Solving Juice

By Peter Jeff
The Leadership Mints Guy

Here’s an exercise to challenge your problem solving skills. Reading time: 2:45

        You are the marketing director for a major producer of bath soap. Sales are lagging particularly among consumers with young children.

        ivory2Research shows that children perceive that the bath soap will burn their eyes. Yet the facts are clear: the opposite is true.

       Tests confirm that the soap will NOT burn their eyes. Yet the perception persists and sales continue to lag. What do you do to enhance sales of this bath soap particularly to consumers with young children?

      You lead. Creatively. soapJust like Edward Bernays did in the 1920s to help
Procter & Gamble sell more bars of Ivory soap.

       Bernays, the father of the public relations profession, donated large cakes of the soap to art schools in 1925 to use in sculpture competitions sponsored by Procter & Gamble.

      Invariably young sculptors would inadvertently put their soap-covered fingers in their eyes. Then they personally discovered that the soap did not burn their eyes.

      Soap sales for bath washing (and art) zoomed after that leadership decision to spike their creative problem-solving juice. Continue reading

Gurgling Above The Fish Bowl Fray

By Peter Jeff
The Leadership Mints Guy

Here’s an idea to manage how customers feel about your company. Reading time: 3:02

       No matter what business you’re in, you’re in the Public Relations business.

       All leaders are as President Abraham Lincoln so eloquently observed at the initial Lincoln-Douglas debate in Ottawa, Illinois in 1858 .Lincoln said :

          “In this and like communities, public sentiment is everything. With public sentiment nothing can fail; without it nothing can succeed. Consequently he who moulds public sentiment goes deeper than he who enacts statutes or pronounces decisions.”

      Arthur Page, the first public relations director at AT&T, reinforced the power of public sentiment from a business perspective when he said more than 80 years ago:

         “All business in a
democratic society begins with
public permission and
exists by public approval.”

      Business begins with public permission and survives on public approval.

       That should be the mantra of every business leader. After all it’s too easy to get too comfortable in our fish bowls of a business and forget that others are looking in – from all sides, at all times Continue reading