Friday, 30 October 2009

Crowdsourcing - my dream has come true!

What a fan-fucking-tastic idea. Crowdsourcing - putting a brief out to as many people as care to have a go at it - could have been invented just to make my little piggly wiggly point skyward.

The great George Parker at Adscam has been writing about an agency that is based entirely on crowdsourcing and it's been getting lots of attention - mainly from agency boys and girls complaining about it. And I can see why! It means they're all fucked!

What's so good about crowdsourcing for us, the clients? Well, just look at how it works, for cack's sake! Lots of people give you lots of ideas - FOR FREE - in the hope of winning the work, you pick the one you like and they'll be so fucking delighted just to have won the derisory fee you're paying, they won't mind at all if you change the work beyond recognition if you want.

(And if you know me, you'll know I fucking love changing work beyond recognition! Sure, it annoys my agencies - but that's just because they can't stand me being better at their job than they are!)

The extra bonus about crowdsourcing is that if you've seen some bits and bobs you like in the losing ideas, you can get your winning creative type to 'accidentally' add something similar to their work. It's cheeky!

In the end, you'll have a beautiful Frankenstein that, basically, you've created - without paying more than fuck all, and without having to put up with the agency boys moaning because you're making some changes to their work. Again. A lot. Every time. It's like having an army of willing creative bitches to slap about as much as you like - FOR NEXT TO COCKING NOTHING!

So let's have more of it, I say! Crowdsource everything! I might even crowdsource this fucking blog!

Actually, nobody but me could be this fucking electric.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Thursday, 29 October 2009

The search for a new agency - the line-up is complete!

As you may or may not care, I'm looking for a new agency. (The last one refused to work with me because I kept changing their ads. A lot. All the time. They also seemed to object to the fact that I run everything past my mother - but, as I kept telling them, she's nearly target audience.)

Anyway, like a cat-call of particularly desperate, greedy, under-dressed hookers, the list of agencies who'll be pitching for my business is ready.

Terence Fletcher, my intermediary, has left no corner of his little black book unexplored and, wouldn't you know it, five of his closest friends were interested.

So, briefly, here's who's on it:

An agency who's 'raison d'etre' is 'Building brands. Shaping cultures. Changing lives'. Their last big ad featured a celebrity, a big song and the words 'Now with 20% off.'

An agency who's 'creative mantra' is 'Confront. Evolve. Confuse. Resolve.' Their last big ad featured a celebrity, a big song and the words 'Now with 20% off'.

An agency with the longest name I have ever seen on a letterhead, and a firm belief that 'good advertising is about more than just communication - it's about spending cultural currency wisely'. Their last big ad featured a celebrity, a big song and the words 'Now with 20% off'.

An agency with, as far as I can tell, 2 people working there. They've never done a big ad.

An agency that has 'realised the digital revolution has stalled - now is the time for a new paradigm with an entropic approach to discipline engagement'. They haven't done any big ads, or small ones, because they're still 'disassembling the cultural landscape to create a new new media'. But when they do, expect a celebrity, a big song and the words 'Now with 20% off'.

Obviously, everything they've told me so far has been a pack of lies. The only way of telling them apart is at the chemistry meetings. I promise not to let those turn into a shamefully transparent excuse for an almighty piss-up. Honest!

Stay tuned because it's going to be more fun than dipping your winky in a bucket of tits. You know it!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Agency characters, no 1 - The Managing Director

Welcome to an occasional series of my take on the characters you'll find in any agency, anywhere in the world.

Trust me, I've been through enough of them - they are all the same.

First up is the head honcho himself, The Managing Director.

Whether he runs a small agency or a big one, the MD is always a rampant egomaniac with delusions of creative genius. (Now, I AM a creative genius, so I can spot a fraud.)

He will, I'm afraid to say, always be a he and if he's not, she will act like she's a he.

He will have a sizeable booze habit (nothing wrong with that) but, in the interests of maintaining a professional sheen, he will pretend he doesn't.

He will be either a rampant womaniser, or a rampant misogynist. Rare are the MDs who are humble family men - they know the raw attractive power their position provides, and they usually milk it, because...

He will be deeply insecure about some part of his personality or appearance. This is often why he's grappled, humped, punched, scraped and gouged his way to the top - to show all those cunts that he isn't ugly/gay/spotty/prematurely balding/whatever.

He can't, despite all his best efforts, keep himself out of the creative department. He claims to 'let those guys do what they do best', but in those long, empty afternoons when there's nobody to bollock, or fire, or recruit, or sexually harass, he likes to 'just come up with a few ideas, ignore them if you want, they're probably rubbish'.

He will fire / rape anyone who says,'Yes, those ideas are, in fact, rubbish.'

He wants your money, my fellow marketing professional, more than he wants air, steak or claret. And he wants those A LOT.

He will be in a meeting on Monday morning, and in a meeting on Friday afternoon. (Which is bullshit, because that's MY trick.)

He only speaks to people in media to get free tickets to anything / everything for his wife.

He will drive very slowly, no matter how late he is.

He worked client side for a short spell after being an agency Account Director for 3 years and getting bored. He came back because there was too much paper work.

He's no Dave Knockles. But nobody is!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Tuesday, 27 October 2009

The brown ad - my terrible secret

Look, it's time to come clean. Literally.

I have, for most of my life, suffered with a little-known, little-understood and, frankly, little-fucking-bothered-about syndrome.

There's a theory that the human bowel will empty itself involuntarily when a bass note of a frequency specific to each individual is played. It's called 'the brown note' and everyone's is different. When it sounds, the theory goes, you are powerless to stop yourself laying a cable.

Well, the same thing happens to me when I see a particular deep, rich, reddish shade of brown - one that is commonly used in advertising to convey upper-middle class homely elegance.

Anything from handmade cheeses to bespoke tweed shooting suits to environmentally-friendly paint - they're all 'the brown ad' to me.

Knowing this, I avoid Horse & Hound and the like, as well as paint charts, Pantone books and most wood. (Except the morning kind! Ha! I've still got it!)

Well, sometimes I simply can't prepare for the worst. It just happens. And so it was when I stood before a lecture theatre full of Marketing students to deliver my very first 'Dave Knockles Masterclass'.

(I invented that on the way there this morning - apparently everyone else had dropped out, so who do you call when you're in a fix? Yup - Davey Knockles! They'd even tried calling non-marketing people, engineers, vets and law profs before me, but they were in luck - nobody else could do it!)

Anyway, I'd delivered my lecture which, despite being made up on the spot, was brilliant and was met by total and utter awed silence. Then we went into the Q & A. All the students were too knocked out by my performance to ask anything, so their boffin tutor bloke looked a bit desperate (probably just amazed), then grabbed a magazine and asked me to review the ads in it.

To my horror, it was Horse & Hound.

I never run from a challenge, though, so I went in. I was doing so well (I sensed an Aga ad was on the inside spread and managed to dodge it in time) but was ambushed by the fucking back cover - leather goods made to your specification by a true artisan. The fucking mother of all brown ads.

So, before some 150 pairs of young eyes, I suffered what doctors call a 'complete rectal prolapse'. And the explosive shitting is made worse by the fact that I can't help myself shouting things like 'OOOOHHH, FUCKING CHRIST!' while I'm doing it. It made quite a spectacle.

It's actually quite interesting - you'd think that a suit and a pair of undercrackers would contain even the most violent anal voiding, but there's a surprising amount of spatter. Much of it reached the first couple of rows.

(Of course, there was the usual self-centred shrieking from the students. But hello? What about me? Victim of massive involuntary backdoor soiling over here! Some fucking people, honestly.)

Well, it was a long walk back to the office, once I'd scraped the worst out in a McDonald's bog.

Still, I feel better for having shared. And I've learned that I was right to never go to university. Students are cunts - and I know everything anyway!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Monday, 26 October 2009

My new agency. The hunt begins.

Sometimes in the dangerous world of marketing, you get punched right in the neck, stabbed in the eye and poked really hard in that bit between your butt and your balls.

It happened to me on Friday. It wasn't pretty. (Especially because Big Angie, the...what is she...the bird who gets tea and coffee and stuff...walked into a door and had a massive stroke in front of everyone. Then another stroke. Then pissed herself. Then had another stroke. By the time she'd finished stroking, one side of her face was so lopsided she looked like she was fucking melting. And, I have to be honest, she looked sort of like she was laughing which made the whole thing a bit hard to take seriously. Big Alan Cockson, for one, was absolutely howling. Anyway, someone suggested I shouldn't have closed the door pretty much in her face, but she should have been watching where she was going. When I enter a room, I close the door behind me. Hard. She was walking behind me, she should know the risks involved in that. Sometimes I accidentally do a little botty-yawn, sometimes I slam the door. Everyone knows this - including Big Angie. I think.)

Anyway, the best thing to do after such an unpleasant event (which it was for me, but all anyone cares about afterwards is getting flowers and notifying next of kin, which is fucking typical) is find a new goal, and go balls-out to achieve it.

That goal for me is finding a new agency.

So, first things first, I need to follow my own rules and let some other fucker run around and get a list of likely candidates together.

That means hiring an intermediary - and because I get through agencies pretty briskly, I have one on speed-dial. His name is Terence Fletcher, and he is a world-class toff.

(Some say that I should get off my fat arse and find agencies myself, what with being a Marketing Director and everything. But where, I retort, is the fucking fun in that? It's a NIGHTMARE. You have to phone people and they want to meet you and talk to you and discuss your brand and blah blah blah. All time I could devote to thinking, exploring new groundbreaking marketing strategies that engender customer delight or working on my sand wedge.)

So, I briefed Terence this afternoon over a light lunch of salade du langoustines et coquilles, entrecote de beouf pour deux, pommes dauphinoise avec chanterelles, lapin au cidre et aux pommes, ballotine de foie gras, blanquette de veau and tarte flambee aux fruits du Mendiant. (He likes a different kind of restaurant to me, does Terence.)

He now knows what I want in an agency: willingness to collaborate creatively, a synergy with my cultural alignment and a realistic expectation of remuneration levels.

"Same as usual, then," said Terence. "They need to take it up the arse creatively, get you pissed all the time and be as cheap as a Hanoi sweatshop."

"Terence," I said, as I slurped a very amenable Pinot Noir, "You're on the fucking money again."

The hunt begins. And the agency that wins won't believe their fucking luck!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Saturday, 24 October 2009

Another kick in the dangle-bag

Last night's post was, you may have noticed, slightly undisciplined. The reason for that turbulence is simple: I was as smashed as a human being can be without actually turning into alcohol.

I took to the bottle, dear friends, because once more the board rejected my latest stroke of marketing fucking genius: my plan to exploit the new product placement legislation by taking over X Factor.

The meeting started with much promise. I'd been to the Dog & Hog with Mandy Fookes (my new Marketing Manager) for some intensive orientation training and, more to the point, to see if she gets fruity when she's had a couple. (She does.)

So, I'd had a beer (well, I'd had some beers) and was in fine and expansive form. I began by explaining the enormous opportunity I had unearthed, how I was going to triple the company's turnover and change the global face of marketing forever. This had their attention - only two of them were asleep, which is excellent for a post-lunch meeting.

Then I revealed the masterplan. To add a bit of theatre, I'd got a life-size picture of Simon Cowell made, standing next to a huge consumer durable, with the line 'If you've got the Cleanavia 1100, your whites (and coloured fabrics, excluding drapery) will have the X-Factor!'

(Fucking good line that - copywriters should watch and learn.)

Anyway, Big Andy Poleman says, 'How much are they going to want for all this, Dave?'

And I say, 'I've negotiated an exclusive deal: all they want is £400,000.'

And Poleman says, 'Jesus, Dave! Four-hundred grand gets us all over X-Factor like a fucking rash! Brilliant!'

And I say, 'No, no - that's four-hundred grand per episode.'

And Poleman says, 'How many episodes are there?'

And I say, 'Fuck knows, but it seems to last for cunting ages!'

And Poleman says, 'So, what you've actually done, Dave, is develop a plan to blow the next three years' marketing budget. And that plan is this: make that cunt Cowell substantially richer than he already fucking is.'

And I say, 'But this will change the face of marketing forever.'

And Poleman says, 'Sit down, Dave, and shut your fucking pipe. If you haven't found a new agency by this time next week, I'll personally make you eat your own desk, you cuntslot.'

It's hard to describe how I feel. I'm beginning to wonder whether my gift for marketing will go forever unrecognised. But I have to remind myself that I am the man who wrote the line 'Don't delay - buy today!', a line now used in ads all over the world.

I will not let the light of my talent be hidden behind the cloud of the world's lack of sales-oriented strategic vision.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Friday, 23 October 2009






Thursday, 22 October 2009

Product placement - my insights

Since the government (or someone) passed some kind of law (or something) it's now (or will be) okay to place products in UK TV shows, and to charge for it.

At least, I think that's what it said in Campaign. (I read Campaign, absolutely. Well, I take it to the shitter with me and check the job ads in the back to see how much the agency boys get paid. Too mucking fuch, if you ask me! Ha! I'm on form today!)

Now, for the marketing industry product placement has widespread implications. For example, if you can have everyone in Coronation Street scoffing Big Macs and saying things like 'Hmm, Vera, this 'ere burger is fookin' delicious, petal', then why pay for an ad in the break when, let's be honest, everyone is either taking a squirt, putting a brew on or leaning over to make a hopeful assault on the wife's Western front?

And what about us in the consumer durables market relating to, or directly involving, cleaning clothes and or soft furnishings and or other fabrics? Well, for us, it's a lot harder. Because there may be many consumer durables on British TV, but they are rarely the heroes.

So, how do we feature our products? Well, in marketing any apparently impossible task can be completed with the help of one simple trick: throw tons of fucking loot at it.

With that in mind, I can reveal the fan-fucking-tastic product placement proposal I'm putting to the board tomorrow.

We're going to offer a cock-witheringly massive amount of cash to put our consumer durables on the next series of X-Factor.

Yes. Read it again. And then weep green tears of jealousy.

Here's how it works: we'll be offering to put a huge consumer durable on the stage when a contestant is performing (with a semi-clad doris dancing round it, obviously). Nothing too obvious, just a washing machine about, I dunno, 40 feet hight. And we'll have Ant and Dec recording links while unloading one of our consumer durables, as though caught doing their washing ('Wow, Ant, these whites are brilliant man!', 'Ah knaaa, Dec, and so's Dave from Leek singing Bat Oota Hell man!')

We'll also slant the choice of music to suit our market. Songs I'm suggesting are Dirty Washing by Buzz Hawkins, Spotless by Bobby Tinsley, Dirrty by Christina Aguilera, Spinning Around by Kylie Minogue and a specially commissioned song called Superior Cleaning Is Central To Customer Delight, Baby.

Now that is a fucking marketing nugget of purest gold. Tune in tomorrow to hear how big a bonus the board are going to give me for coming up with it. I'll fucking deserve it too!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

The buck stops somewhere over there

Today, a brief lesson in the art of delegation.

Delegation is the glue that holds together the foundation beneath the bedrock of any successful individual's career. Without it, each day would disappear in a whirl of answering emails, writing reports, achieving objectives, attending meetings, training, helping your team develop - all the shit that stops you from doing what your God-given talent as a business executive is intended for:

Being a fucking genius.

Now, my day can be cocking hectic, as you'll discover here. So I set aside time for unhindered thought every day. How else do you think I came up with the name 'Cleanavia 1100' for our new, as-yet, unlaunched consumer durable? How do you think I came up with the brilliant idea to suck the gay market dry? And how do you think I bounced back from the unanimous rejection that brilliant idea received?

Now, to have the time to do all that laser-guided thinking, I need to delegate. The dictionary defines delegation as 'giving all the stuff you should do to some no-mark without a BMW motor car or an account at Delilaz'. (That's the Dave Knockles Dictionary! Come on! That's brilliant!!)

(I can't wait to get a new agency so someone will laugh at my jokes. Only agency boys seem to get them.)

That person is my new Marketing Manager (now that the High Priestess of the Bitches, Sally Pearson-Wright, has buggered off to work with King Cunthook, Rupert Abbott). Her name is is Amanda Fookes (Don't! I've had NO END of laughs with her about that! She's actually all laughed out because now she can't even raise a smile! It's BRILLIANT!)

Here's what I delegate, and why:

Emails - it's correspondence and Directors don't do correspondence.

Writing letters - it's correspondence and Directors don't do correspondence.

Taking calls - it's correspondence and Directors don't do correspondence.

Writing briefs for the agency - it's correspondence and Directors don't do correspondence.

Attending non-board level meetings - it's not correspondence but I can't be fucking bothered, it's just a lot of hormonal old sacks wanking on about getting a new fucking kettle or how Marion is having a tit removed and who's going to cover her work and the toilets have got rats in and nobody's ever around to authorise the funding to sort it and why don't we ever have any training and other departments all go for a drink together on a Friday and some Directors actually come out of their office and there's been a complaint about the way you look at some of the girls - you've all been there, I'm sure.

Anyway, do you see how that could develop? Explore it for yourself and find your own style of delegation. Pretty soon, you'll be spending as much time thinking as Davey Knockles himself.

You won't be as fucking good at it, though!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

More dirty tricks from Rupert Abbott (the cuntheel)

The man is a total wanker. Rupert Abbott, Marketing Director at our main rival (who also happen to be the market leader - and only because they sell more stuff, the shitpipes), has stolen my Marketing Manager, started using my old agency and now - NOW - has got himself a fucking column in our trade mag! What a cuntbag!

'21st Century Consumer Durables Marketing' is, it says here, 'An insight to the changing landscape of white goods marketing, from digital evangelist and multiple award-winner, Rupert Abbott.'


Well, if he wants a fight, he's got one. Who cares if everybody in our industry will read his column, blog, Twitterfeed, Facebook page, RSS channel and online tutorials? Not me. Because nobody will swallow any of his cunt-fluff ramblings for a second.

Get this - his first column is about the importance of online word-of-mouth! But Rupert - nobody uses their mouth online, you chump! You use YOUR FINGERS! Your first column and you've made a schoolboy error! Everyone's laughing at you, Rupert!

I can't wait to read the next one. He'll probably say you shouldn't have women with big bristolas in your ads! I know! That would be MADNESS!

Anyway, must dash - Big Andy Poleman wants to know why our sales, website hits and brand awareness figures are down. Again. (I don't know why he's asking me - I don't really know what any of those things are!)

I'll be back tomorrow with some marketing wisdom that makes Rupert Abbott look like the gold-plated fuck-mush he is!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Monday, 19 October 2009

How to choose an agency, The Finale - We have a winner!

After a lot of time, trouble and (if you're doing it right) beerz, the day has come to choose the agency that you will work with for the next 1-36 months.

(I've found the average to be about 8 months, but that figure is dragged down by my early days in the job when, if I'm honest, I got through agencies like I get through condoms - a couple a day! The upside is that I really fucking know how to choose an agency. I think I may actually hold the British record.)

So, you've seen the presentations, you've seen the work, you've been wined and dined. What now?

1. Talk it over.
Our traditional method is to gather in the boardroom at about 4pm, phone Curry In A Hurry, order some lamb bhuna, chicken dopiaza, shashlik, chicken kebabs, tandoori fish, 40 or 50 poppadums, 15 orders of pilau rice, double chips for Big Alan Cockson, beef madras, lamb madras, chicken madras (with exra chili), prawn madras and a crate of Kingfisher - then lock the door. We don't leave until we've finished the lot. Sometimes we even talk about the pitch

2. Consider the work.
For me, that means running it past my mother (she's nearly target audience) and getting her to put it in order of what she hates least (she hates everything the old girl - she's a tough crowd, but the agencies will have to get used to her opinion if they're going to work with me!). Then I give it all what I call 'the 24 hour test'. You look at the work, and if you can remember it 24 hours later, throw it out - it's probably too contentious and will get you into trouble

3. Remember the chemistry meeting.
Remember the chemistry meeting? Then it wasn't a proper chemistry meeting. Throw them out.

4. Look at the costs.
Ignore all the bullshit in the presentations except for the last slide which, knowing agencies, will be the one that matters: it'll have the price on it. Throw out all the agencies that aren't the cheapest.

Bingo. You have a winner. They'll be able to get you pissed regularly, the work won't be so interesting it gets you into any bother and they'll be cheap. Perfect!

So there you have it: the Dave Knockles guide to choosing an agency. Do it my way and you'll go on more benders than Boy George on a city break to San Francisco. (I'm just joking - I've got some very good gay friends. Well, I probably would have if I went to the gym more and I'm always thinking I should.)

Tomorrow, back to the coal-face of consumer durables marketing. It's going to be a long day: I've got a meeting at 9.30am, for God's sake. Now that's fucking commitment - but I'm right up for it.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Saturday, 17 October 2009

An interlude about tits

Before I dispense my latest nugget of absolute fucking genius, I'd like to pause and consider one of marketing's most fundamental topics.


They are what our industry has been built upon, and they are what our industry craves beyond all other things.

I've been having a very interesting conversation with some of the folks over at the fantastic about this very subject. And it may interest the feminists amongst you (I know I appeal to women A LOT, so don't pretend you're not out there, ladies!) to know that size is not always the most important issue.

Though, to be fair, it is still pretty close to the top. Most of the time. Or mostly always.

Anyway, check it out. I would if I were a twonk like you!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

(I'm just joking - you're possibly not a twonk.)

Friday, 16 October 2009

How to choose an agency, part 4 - The Pitch. Yawn.

Well, you may have thought that all the fun of the chemistry meetings was free, but it ain't.

You pay for it by the frigging bucketload on pitch day.

On this long, sad day, 3-5 agencies (or maybe more, if you can possibly imagine anything so fucking hideous) rock up at whichever boardroom has been chosen as Boredom Sector 1, and tell you for an hour and a half that black is white, up is down and George Michael is an arm-wrestling father of three.

They'll spend the first 20 minutes telling you about their philosophy (incidentally, my philosophy is this: never go with a girl with big hands), the next 60 showing you the incomprehensible work they've done in response to the brief you wrote on the crapper, and the last 10 graciously letting you ask them questions. (Which you should never, EVER do because it just encourages them to keep on fucking talking.)

Anyway, here are some tricks to help get you through the day-long agony.

1) Write a ditty in your head.
Great tip, this. Make up a little song and keep singing it in your head - you'll be surprised how quickly the pitch flies by. My favourite was to the tune of the William Tell Overture and could be directed at whichever agency boy was killing me with Powerpoint: 'You're a cunt, you're a cunt, you're a cunt cunt cunt / You're a cunt, you're a cunt, you're a cunt cunt cunt / You're a cunt, you're a cunt, you're a cunt cunt cunt / You're a cuuuunnt, you're a big fat cunt.' (By all means use it, but remember to pay me royalties! In beerz!)

2) Mentally undress the agency girls.
Obvious, I know, but I thought I'd throw it in because, sometimes, they do have fantastic bristolas. It's a tried and tested method. But if it ain't broke, why not imagine giving it one up the funnel?

3) Pretend to take a call.
Remember - you're the boss. So if you need to take a call, just press your phone to your ear (it was on silent, if anyone asks why it didn't ring) say, 'Sorry, Brian - give me a minute', then walk out. Go back in when you've had a beer or a wank or a shit or whatever. It's your call.

4) Be a complete and utter fuck-end.
If you're really, really bored, be unpleasant. It can be very cathartic. Ask them stupid, aggressive questions, interrupt them with jokes only you laugh at, snort derisively at random moments and, if the fancy takes you, stop them and ask something like, 'If my brand was a vegetable, which would it be?'

In the end, though, you'll have 3-5 (or maybe more) presentation leave-behinds in front of you (which you should never read, under any circumstances). You won't remember any of the actual presentations. But you'll have to choose one of the agencies.

Next time, I'll tell you how to do it. And when I have, you'll want to blow me and buy me a beer! And I'll probably let you!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Thursday, 15 October 2009

How to choose an agency, part 3 - Let's go fucking nuts!

I've got 2 lapdancers grinding their thongs in my face, another putting a large cocktail in my right hand, a fourth replacing the half-eaten lobster in my left hand with a fresh one and a fifth doing that thing they do with cherry stalks, only she's doing it with my ear.

I've been drinking champagne since lunchtime (if you accept that lunchtime starts at 10.45am). I've eaten my weight in fresh truffles, hand-dived quail's eggs, fillet of badger, parfait of unicorn, roast golden eagle and devilled cunting dodo. And I'm now running up a frankly epic bill at a West End lappie.

Why? It's a 'chemistry meeting' with a new agency!

This is the part of the pitch process where you get to meet the agencies your intermediary found and see if you get along. Or, more importantly, see if you get pissed.

(If you don't, you can be pretty sure they won't be winning the pitch. After all, as I've said many times, the agency boys bring the beerz! It's the law!)

They're called 'chemistry meetings' because in the 80s, they revolved solely around chemicals - namely cocaine. In those days, the chemistry meeting would start with drinks over lunch and 14 hours later, the agency and client would be sitting in the same restaurant, over the same untouched plate of nouvelle cuisine, having the same conversation as when they started.

Nowadays, though, things are different. Business is tough. Businessmen are tough. We talk tough, we play hard, we work like slaves. But we don't abuse our bodies. No way. Drugs are for mugs and losers. Who needs to put something into their body to change the way they act? These days, we're more disciplined, sticking to beer, wine, Scotch, brandy, tequila slammers, strong coffee, Red Bull or simple, plain vodka. It's about respecting yourself.

Anyway, chemistry meetings inevitably end with everyone getting along famously - especially you and the bloke with the credit card! (It's funny coz it's true!)

Some say that this stage only really weeds out the agencies that don't know how to throw a top piss-up. I say, 'What's the fucking problem?!'

I think of chemistry meetings as a celebration of finding a new agency before you've found them. (This shouldn't be confused, obviously, with the celebration you enjoy when you actually do find them - now that's a proper fucking knees up.)

Tomorrow, I'll tell you about what happens on pitch day. And it'll be pure fucking gold, as usual!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

How to choose an agency, part 2 - The Intermediary

Yesterday, I gave you the basics of finding a new agency.

Now we move onto the stuff that you, fellow marketing professional, should pay me for. Because this stuff is more golden than the contents of David Beckham's dangle-bag.

You need a new agency. But how do you decide who should be on the pitch list? After all, there are literally...lots of agencies out there, all as brown-nosingly eager to please as each other.

It's easy: you pay some other cunt to do it! (The alternative is too horrific to consider. Keep reading the industry mags, go to the networking dos, keep up to speed with the award shows, stuff finely chopped chili under your foreskin - I made that one up, but it's about as enjoyable as the first three.)

No way. Fuck that in the ear. (Actually, I tried to do that to a young professional from Slovenia once but, ironically, she was deaf. So she couldn't actually hear me ask.)

Enter The Intermediary. This is the adland version of a pimp. (Remember that agencies are the desperate, bitter hookers of the analogy.) This individual will work for a company called something like 'Agency Nexus', but the company will consist of him, his kitchen table and a fancy business card.

He will be an ex-agency suit who, having bounced from one Soho shitpit to the next, found himself at 45 and in a pickle. He'd missed the promotions, his friends were all CEOs and he'd been increasingly out-knobbed when it came to professional winky-measuring time at Soho House. So, he became his own boss and now hobnobs with agencies and clients, feeling big and clever.

Anyway, he (or she - the money-for-old-rope business is not sexist) will basically phone some old mates, get taken to lunch, arrange the pitch, get taken to more lunches, advise during the pitch, get more direct bribes than lunch, help you choose an agency, get paid.

It's a win-win. Actually, it's a win-win-win. You win because you don't have to get involved in all that tiresome running about, the intermediary wins with several lunches, backhanders and a fat fee, and the agency wins - because they end up getting a lesson in advertising from me, Dave Knockles! BOOM!

It's a beautiful three-way relationship and, like all the best three-way relationships, it's available to anyone with enough green foldy stuff! And that's ME!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

How to choose a new agency

So, back to work.

Since my last agency called me every kind of cunt and refused to work with me because I kept rejecting their work, I need to find a new one.

For you, fellow marketeer, this is a beautiful stroke of luck. (Better than the 'Stroke of Luck' Jelena, the Polish Pole Dancer (I know - hilarious!) at Delilaz does if you promise not to tell the Home Office about her expired Visa.)

Because if you watch and learn from this point on, you will glean priceless marketing insight and business success inspiration going forward into the short, medium and long terms. And that, surely, is what life is all about. That and beerz.

The first rule of choosing an agency is to remember one simple truth: ad agencies (or communications groups, marketing partners, digital consumer nodes or whatever fucking else these see-through cuntwads call themselves) are NO BETTER THAN HOOKERS.

And, just like hookers, all they want is your loot. (Actually, not all hookers want your loot. I'm not naming names, but some are really nice girls who genuinely like certain successful executives and only take the money to pay for their sick mother's new liver - and that's a fact.)

The truly wonderful result of this scenario for you, the marketing professional, is that the loot they want ISN'T ACTUALLY YOURS!

Brilliant, eh? A group of very eager, very slick, very professional prostitutes are going to punch, gouge, fistfuck and choke each other just to be able to wine and dine you in the hope that, eventually, you'll give them money that doesn't come out of your wallet. (Whoever thought this wheeze up deserves a fucking Knighthood, a CBE, an OBE and a big pair of cast-iron pants to house what must be massive balls.)

Of course, the joy shouldn't be restricted to the marketing department (by which I mean the Marketing Director - the minions can't be wined and dined when the phone needs answering). It's traditional to welcome your fellow board members to enjoy the slutfest.

So, with that in mind, tune in tomorrow to learn how to put together a pitch list. (I'll give you a clue - you get some other fuck-knuckle to do it! Brilliant!) You know this is gold! And I know it's gold!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Alright - the admen were right

Just a quick one, this. George Parker, of the absolutely cock-on Adscam blog, posted about old Davey Knockles the other day. And in the comments on his post, he suggested that my choice of white type and black background was rubbish.

Bollocks, I retorted. (And to be fair, I've never agreed with an adman in my life - so this may have just been a knee-jerk reaction.)

Anyway, I checked with my mother (she's nearly target audience) and she confirmed that the admen were, somehow, right.

Her exact words were: 'The black looked like the colour of the dress that slut was wearing when I saw her and your father standing their, bold as brass, in the queue at the Co-Op. Probably buying condoms and rum, the dirty little trollop.'

So, I've changed it. (Well, I got some drone at work to change it - I was at the management breakfast inventing a new kind of sandwich: The George. It's a Bacon, Egg, Sausage, Tomato - B.E.S.T. George Best. Marketing genius like that can't be taught - so don't even ask.)

Anyway, no more changes.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Monday, 12 October 2009

Don't be scared - this man will not kill you!

He may look like a pretty serious chap. You might not, on first view, be inclined to leave him in charge of your new-born kittens.

But this chap actually knows his onions. In fact, he knows his onions and several other peoples' onions too. Why? Because he thinks I'm a 'fucking prince'!

This man is George Parker. He writes Adscam, one of the blogs I actually read by an adman. Despite the fact that he's a copywriter (you can see my thoughts on those here) he's full of piss and vinegar, he puts semi-pornographic pictures of Kate Moss on his site every week and he seems to hate agencies more than I do! Thinking about it, he could be on our fucking board!

(I might ask Big Andy Poleman, my MD, whether we have room for a Non-Executive Chairman. George would fit right in at the Friday management lunch down at the Dog & Hog.)

Anyway, there's one slight problem. Well, two actually. Firstly, he seems to think I'm not real. But I'm very real. I'm really real.

(I admit, I sometimes wonder whether, you know, when you see yourself in a mirror, is it, like, you? Or is it, like, another you? And if it's not you, then are you there in the first place? I asked my mother but she told me I was a disappointment. Again. Anyway, I'm looking now at my hands, my computer and my walnut-topped desk here at my home workstationhub. I'm real! Aren't I? Hello! Dave! See - I heard myself say that. Does that prove it? Fuck.)

Er...second, he and his agency-boy mates seem to think that my blog, with white type out of black, IS HARD TO READ!

Cobblers! Black is the colour of my BMW, the colour of my satin sheets and the colour of my original Gibson Les Paul guitar (never played - worth a fortune). I'll never change it!

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Thursday, 8 October 2009

Why lapdancing is good for Britain

As I sat last night in Delilaz, one of Europe's premier exponents of modern dance, with not one but four girls doing their best to show me just how dramatically flexible the human body can be, it occurred to me that what those brave girls were doing was taking Britain forward.

At one point, when four pairs of enhanced bristolas were bouncing around my face, I almost properly believed in God.

You see, what these girls do for the hard-working, dedicated, selfless and downright amazing executives of Great Britain is provide a way of releasing the aggression and testosterone that is a natural by-product of high-level management.

Spending the day making tough decisions, formulating business strategies that engender lasting customer delight, driving a company forward to achieve its goals in the short and long term - it all creates a huge amount of testosterone. And it's got to go somewhere.

If it wasn't for the committed and professional ladies at places like Delilaz across the UK, the executives of the nation would be completely suffocated by their own directorial by-product.

As it is, they're free to build up vast quantities of natural management residue by day, then have it professionally expunged by night.

It's why I'll always see lapdancers as the ultimate patriots. I'll never stop saluting them.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Rupert Abbott is a cast-iron fuckwanking shithead

Right. I'm not going to beat around the houses. I've got one thing to say with this post, and one thing only.

Rupert Abbott, Marketing Director at our main rival and market leader, is a total and utter shitnozzle, idiot-breath, bastard hole and cunt.

Not only did he poach the one person in this place who could do my job (my Marketing Manager, Sally Pearson-Wright) but he has now approached my agency (well, the one that refused to work with me after I rejected all their work) and HAS STARTED WORKING WITH THEM!

What a pure and unblemished fuckbag, cackshagger, dipshithead and cunt.

How dare he milk the creative juice I allowed that agency to suckle from the teats of my inspiration! Or, to put it another way, that cunt will be stealing all my best ideas!





These are the jewels in the Dave Knockles crown of marketing success. Well, Rupert Abbott, you spunkwich-munching jizzlobber of a cunt, I hope that crown of marketing success becomes an albatross of marketing failure.

And if you've got a comeback to that, I'd like to hear it. You...cunt.

And that's all I've got to say.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!

Thursday, 1 October 2009

What admen don't realise

Well, after yesterday's hullabaloo settled down, I left work late (it was nearly 6pm, for God's sake) having reflected on matters. I continued that reflection in Radish Bar, then Dog Bar, then God Bar. And the reflection I kept seeing was the reflection of me, in a mirror, being right.

Why was I right to reject all the work the agency produced?

First, I trust the opinion of the target audience more than some suited adman. My mother is nearly target audience, so I trust her opinion almost totally, then throw in some of my own to make up for the fact that she isn't technically target audience.

My mother's opinion was, generally, that the work reminded her of the woman my father left us for many years ago. (My opinion was that my mother is usually right, so why argue!)

Do I want to produce advertising that reminds potential customers of a woman who ran off with their husband? No. That's just obvious. You'd be mad to do it. Mad.

The second reason is this: I have a responsibility to this brand. If an ad bears this company's logo, I have to make sure it's of the very highest standard - and that it fits our overall General Ideology of Strategised Marketing (GISM) to ensure maximum business profitisation and customer delight engenderment.

The problem is, none of them seem to get it right. Which is why I keep having to show them the way. When I have an idea, I instinctively know that it's right - but when the agency boys try, I instinctively know that it's wrong. I can't explain it. But it's quite like when I instinctively know that I'm a very gifted singer, or that the food a waiter has brought me is wrong, or that the service I'm being provided by pretty much everyone isn't up to scratch, or that it's my right of way rather than some stupid woman with a pushchair. I just instinctively KNOW. And, as Darwin proved, instincts are never, ever wrong.

That's what these admen will never fully understand. It takes balls, backbone, guts and nuts to have instant, thoughtless, unconsidered instincts. But I'll always live by them.

Why? Because I AM THE CLIENT!