Good is the enemy of great

‘Kun det bedste er godt nok’ (‘Only the best is good enough’) is the LEGO company motto.

“Since its first interlocking brick was launched in 1949 it has become more popular than any toy in history. Every second, seven new boxes of Lego are sold; for every person in the world, there are 62 Lego pieces; Lego people – mini-figures, as they’re known – outnumber real people. You’d think it would be impossible to to go wrong with a brand as beloved as that.”

Yet five years ago, they almost went bankrupt.

LEGO

“The problem lay not with the product, but with the company’s attempts in the Nineties to make itself more modern and relevant in the age of video games. It had attempted to broaden its appeal to the young female market; it had tried to become a lifestyle brand with its own lines of clothes and watches; it had built more theme parks. But in doing so it had neglected its core business.”

This is a fascinating story of a company that reinvented itself by going back to the core. With some incredible pictures from the inside, great stuff.

Taxi driver vs advertisers

I’ve just started reading ‘Round Ireland with a fridge‘ a few days ago and (apart from being a good funny book) there was this one part that reminded me so much of advertising that I had to copy it right here. And yes, not all advertising is bad ;)

“The taxi driver helped me with the fridge but had failed to see anything in it worthy of conversation. He has his own agenda and he wanted to chat about traffic congestion in the city, unnecessary roundabouts and the mindless introduction of one-way systems. Taxi drivers are the same throughout the world – great levellers. Never mind that Nelson Mandela, President Clinton or Michelle Pfeiffer has jumped into the cab, they’ll get no specialist treatment, none whatsoever. The driver will bore them just as shitless as you and me”

For those who don’t know the book, it’s basically about Tony Hawks who hitchhiked around Ireland with a fridge after a bet he did with one of his friends.