Honor Thy Old School

Old School Cool

Rust is Beautiful

I’ll admit it.  I love to collect rusty things.  Pay a visit to my house and you’ll figure that out pretty quickly.  You are greeted by a rusty bicycle in the flowerbed and an old milk can covered in a rusty patina beside the front door.

There was a time when I wanted everything around me to be sleek and modern.  Polished, shiny, a nearly perfect appearance.  As I grow older, my appreciation for the things that came before me is growing more acute.  I gaze at old contraptions with a sense of wonderment.  These antiques were born in a time before any computer technology was available.  I can’t quite seem to fathom how invention and  manufacturing were successfully completed without the aid of a CAD program or a computerized assembly line.

It Used to Take a Village

The threshing machine in the picture above is an excellent representation of the “technology” that was part of a farmer’s machinery arsenal before the combine ran it out of the field.  It took several people to harvest the crops, but the area farmers gathered together to get it done.  My own family has retold stories about how some of the wealthier farmers would buy the machine, then the neighbors would band together, traveling farm to farm to harvest all the fields in the area.

Electronic Communication Is Not Always Best

In this age of virtual businesses, computerized technology, and electronic communication, we can learn a lesson or two about marketing from those who have gone before us.  Sure, we have the ability to reach out to a much larger audience than was possible before the internet came around.  However, there is still a lot of value in the personal touch of sending a creative handwritten note card via “snail mail”, picking up a phone to engage in a live conversation with a potential client, or even (gasp!) go door-to-door to meet and greet people in  person.

It’s just my opinion, but I believe today’s electronic communication technology is killing live face-to-face interaction.  Case in point:  kids that prefer to text each other from across the room instead of getting up and engaging in a conversation with an actual person.  Learn a lesson from the old school marketers and incorporate some of the tried-and-true methods into your campaign.  It just might shock, but will certainly delight, your clients.

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