Tag Archives: Mercedes Benz

I really need to get over myself. A lesson in humility.

I originally published this 3 years ago, but re-reading it now, I just had to share – again.

Yesterday, God decided that I needed to be brought low.

You see, I think I’m the bee’s knees.

I’ve always thought that I was a handsome dude (really ever since I got my first piece of a**), so whenever I’m out, there’s typically a peacock strut happening.

Yesterday was no exception.

I had gone into Jersey City to see my friend, and was headed home, when I stopped into the Starbucks on the corner of Park and Church street in Montclair, to pick up a Green Tea Frappuccino for wifey.

As the weather has been nice and balmy, the people were out, and there were plenty folks milling about, enjoying the pleasant weather.

I stepped out of my freshly washed ride, opened my plume and strutted into Starbucks, aware that all eyes were on me (at least in my head).

Placed my order with the female barista. Stop staring, honey, my shine is so bright you’ll hurt your eyes.

Waited for my drink next to another redbone obviously checking me out. Notice my ring finger babe. Hate to disappoint, but I’m spoken for.

Pass another biddy on the way out the door. You actin’ like you aint lookin’, but I know you peeped my steeze when I first walked in. Stop fronting!

Note: Oh my sh*t is ridiculous!

As I step out of Starbucks, there’s this hot red drop top (‘convertible’ for the urban linguistically challenged) with a fly sister perched in the passenger side, parked behind my Jeep.

Of course, I’ve got to pass IN FRONT of her ride to get to mine, and I’m abundantly aware of the fact that I will be eye candy for her as I pass.

Plume opened and magnificent. Check.

Swagger on 10. Check.

Big Pimpin’ soundtrack playing in my head. Check.

Commence strutting.

I could write out the rest of this little episode, but better you hear it from the horse’s mouth…

And that’s why I need to get over myself.

If you’ve got a story of vanity gone wrong, I’d love to hear about it.


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Hats off to you BMW

As someone who talks branding frequently, I just had to share this photo of what is unquestionably one of the best advertising one-ups by a brand I’ve come across in quite a while.

There have been a few brand rivalries of note, fought on the advertising front:  McDonalds vs. Burger King; Pepsi vs. Coke; PC vs. Mac; Nas vs. Jay Z.  

I’ve never really thought of a rivalry between Audi and BMW as one of them (I’ve always seen the battle as between Mercedes Benz and BMW). But apparently, Audi has thrown its’ hat into the ring.

Audi’s shot over BMW’s bow, came in the form of a billboard, featuring the Audi 4 with the statement, “Your move, BMW.”

The billboard on Santa Monica Boulevard in Los Angeles, was quickly followed up with BMW’s response, across the street, featuring a BMW 3 series under the sole word “Checkmate.”

Scorecard: BMW 1, Audi 0.


Well played BMW, well played.

Well played BMW, well played.

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You’ve Arrived! Tips on Setting the Stage

A large part of branding involves setting the stage.  Creating the environment within which the impression of you will be made is a crucial part of managing your brand, and shouldn’t be overlooked.

Which entrance more positively impacts your brand:  showing up at an event and stepping out of a Mercedes Benz or showing up at the same event stepping out of a hooptie?  Clearly, unless you’re a clown, stepping out of a Benz is the more impactful entrance.

Each day, we make entrances.  Whether its what we wear, our hairstyles or our personalities, the way we ‘arrive’ helps to shape other people’s perception of us.  Since our entrance or arrival is something over which we have singular control, it bears some discussion.

If you’re going to a function, for example, its best to orchestrate your arrival, presence and departure, in such a way as to create the proper perception of you.  You’ve undoubtedly heard of the term ‘fashionably late,’ which, as you might image, has its roots in the practice of not showing up to a function until most of the guests had already arrived, ensuring that the maximum number of eyes would be on the entrant upon their arrival.  The guest who bore this moniker was two things: (1) fashionable (what good would it do to show up looking shabby?); and (2) late.

On the flip side, its best to always depart from a social engagement, prior to the balance of the other guests.  Having ‘another engagement’ to attend, is a sure way to create the impression that you’re in demand (whether its true or not).  Its also useful to extricate yourself from uncomfortable situations (such as showing up to a function that’s crap, and not wishing to stay a minute longer).

Be sure to tailor your appearance so that its signature.  Wear unusual articles of clothing, a pocket square or ascot, for example.  If everyone is rocking Kangols, you wear a fedora.  If everyone’s in Nike’s, grab yourself a pair of Greedy Geniuses.  Stay fashionably ahead of the curve.  Now this doesn’t mean that you should drop duckets simply to rock the latest gear (because that’s not fashionable, is it?).  But acquiring a choice piece of apparel every once in a while, to augment your collection of signature pieces, is a wise investment in you.

Know your audience.  SunTzu, in The Art of War, advises that before engaging in battle, one should know the terrain upon which the battle is to be fought.  Make it a habit to check out wherever it is you intend to go, in advance.  Get a feel for the place.  Is it a resturaunt? What’s their Zagat rating?  What have other diners said about the food? Service?  What are their specials?  How does one get there?  You should also have ‘dossiers’ prepared if you’re going to be meeting people, and be familiar with their personalities, etc.  This is especially true where you want to make a particular impression, and need to assess how you’ll be received.

Setting the stage may require a little bit of work, but the returns on your overall impression are well worth it, so do it right!

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