Bio: Years ago, one of Mark’s mentors showed him a motorcycle ad. Guy is sitting on a bike at the side of the road, taking a break. Headline reads: “25,000 feet over your head, somebody’s trying to open a little bag of peanuts.” The message for all of us is that that successful marketing isn’t about the money or the media. It starts with stunning ideas that motivate consumers to change behavior. Great ideas gather energy and take on a life of their own. Breakthrough thinking was the basis of Mark Friedman’s training and career. He got his start in consumer advertising as a copywriter, working at DDB, Foote Cone and Belding, and Ketchum. His words found their place in television/print campaigns for package goods and Mark wrote spots for Clorox, Orville Redenbacher, the Beef Industry Council and many others. One day, one of the founders of PC Magazine, whispered the word “Technology” in Mark’s ear as if it were an insider-trading tip. Mark took the leap and became one of the first technology writers to engage in broad scale consumer and business-to-business marketing of computer hardware, software and other systems. Clients included Microsoft, Apple, Palm, Adobe and Sun Microsystems. Mark functioned as a creative director on many of these accounts. One day, classic advertising media and strategies started to feel a bit dated. To avoid becoming a bit dated himself, Mark started his own business, focusing on newer media like internet advertising, website content, and guerilla marketing. Much has changed. But fundamentally, it’s still about generating startling, unforgettable ideas that motivate consumers to change their habits. And no matter how well-versed one is in old media or new, there’s no replacement for good writers and great thinkers.
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