Acton Institute Powerblog Archives

Post Tagged 'marketing'

The Smile Curve and the Future of the Middle Class

The smile curve is an idea came from the computer industry, but it applies broadly. It’s a recognition, in graph form, that there is good money to be made (or more value to be added) in research and development, and, at the other end, in marketing and retailing. Continue Reading...

Stop Trying to Inject Your Work With Meaning (Hint: It’s Already There)

In a recent piece for the Wall Street Journal, Rachel Feintzeig sets her sights on the latest trends in corporate “mission statements,” focusing on a variety of employer campaigns to “inject meaning into the daily grind, connecting profit-driven endeavors to grand consequences for mankind.” Companies have long cited lofty mission statements as proof they have concerns beyond the bottom line, and in the past decade tech firms like Google Inc. Continue Reading...

Black Friday: A Day of Hyper Generosity?

For many, Black Friday epitomizes everything nasty American hyper-consumerism. Stores everywhere are plagued with overly aggressive shoppers, each stuffed to the brim with carb-laden Thanksgiving chow and yet ever-more hungry for the next delicious deal. Continue Reading...

Customers More Forgiving of Businesses with Religious Affiliation

Whenever I get a craving for a chicken sandwich and waffle fries, it’s invariably on Sunday—the one day a week when Chick-fil-A is closed. Rather than become frustrated by the closure, though, I appreciate that Truett Cathy, the founder of Chick-fil-A, was motivated by his religious beliefs to give his employees a day of rest. Continue Reading...

A Living Wage for a Living Tree?

The Ballors went with a live tree this year. We bought it at Flowerland and I do not know the name of the farm whence it came. Over at the American Conservative, Micah Mattix reflects on the Christmas tree market, which in his neck of the woods is “notoriously unstable.” In Ashe County, North Carolina, says Mattix, a dilemma faces the small tree farmer: “It is not sell or starve, but it is sell or go without a new septic tank, a repaired roof, a mended this or that.” Although not specifically about Christmas trees, the difficult choice faced by the poet in the Robert Frost poem Mattix engages at length is also reminiscent of the dynamic of poverty in Winter’s Bone. Continue Reading...

Do We Want Prices to Fool Us?

J.C. Penney recently gave up on last year’s strategy to abandon sales and coupons in favor of “everyday low pricing.” As an article in the New York Times points out, “simplifying pricing, it turns out, is not that simple”: “It may be a decent deal to buy that item for $5,” said Ms. Continue Reading...

Sacred Selling

I have been thinking a lot about the way we sell church-related goods and services. I have been thinking about that and about Jesus overturning the tables of the money changers and sacrificial animal sellers in the temple. Continue Reading...

The Evolution of Marketing

Last week, marketing guru Seth Godin quoted the 17th-century Spanish Jesuit Baltasar Gracián y Morales: Know how to sell your wares, Intrinsic quality isn’t enough. Not everyone bites at substance or looks for inner value. Continue Reading...

The Marketer’s Morality

Seth Godin issued a call recently for marketers to take stock of their trade and embrace the moral aspects of their industry: “You’re responsible for what you sell. When you choose to sell it, more of it gets sold.” I particularly like how Godin emphasizes personal responsibility. Continue Reading...