Art Marketing – Open Letter

When you were a teenager, did you ever feel like this?

The boy lies in the grass with one blade Stuck between his teeth 

A vague sensation quickens In his young and restless heart

And a bright and nameless vision Has him longing to depart

You move me

You move me With your buildings and your eyes Autumn woods and winter skies

Today in the 21st century, do you ever feel like this?

He’d love to spend the night in Zion

He’s been a long while in Babylon

He’d like a lover’s wings to fly on To a tropic isle of Avalon

He plays fast forward just as long as he can

But he won’t need a bed He’s a digital man

You were an Analog Kid. Now you’re a Digital Man.

His world is under anesthetic Subdivided and synthetic His reliance on the giants In the science of the day

And here you are sitting in your office today, trying to fabricate dreams out of digital reality.

Both these songs are from Rush’s Signals album, which hit the streets when I was 14. Everbody’s got a soundtrack to their life and those songs happen to play on mine.

I deeply related to BOTH then, and still do now.

I’ve noticed that successful people manage to live with one foot in the “Analog Kid” world and one foot in the “Digital Man” world. Harsh realities in one hand, dreams and blades of grass in the other.

Analog is the key to the digital. Digital is the key to the analog.

By the way I’ve got an awful lot of customers who are programmers and engineers. The successful ones always understand: The tools are digital, but human beings and persuasion are analog.

Analog is the key to the digital. Digital is the key to the analog.

Just this week, after who knows how many years, Rush finally got inaugurated into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame. Frankly this should’ve happened a decade ago but it doesn’t matter now – they made the cut. Which brings me to another aspect that I think is HUGELY important for success:

Rush created art that stood the test of time.

Boy George didn’t. Loverboy didn’t. Adam Ant didn’t.

You too should aim to be in the business of creating things that stand the test of time. Not eternally working for the weekend and chasing fads and slugging down fickle hits of adrenaline.

Where do you learn how to do… that???

Well they don’t sure teach it in grad school. But I can offer you a hint:

Read or re-read Lord of the Rings. NOT 50 Shades of Gray.

You only learn to create enduring art by immersing yourself in… enduring art. Cuz lizard-brain pig slop has zero long-term value.

Congrats to the boys from Toronto who made the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame with their enduring art . And here’s to all the aspiring Analog Kids and Digital Men in Smart Art Marketing Pro who create the future with 1’s and 0’s that drip with empathy and human touch.

See you later,

Gary

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