Whole Foods Nation Zombies

O-bama! O-bama! O-bama!


Martin Lindstrom:

How Whole Foods “Primes” You to Shop

Have you ever been primed? I mean has anyone ever deliberately influenced your subconscious mind and altered your perception of reality without your knowing it? Whole Foods Market, and others, are doing it to you right now.

Derren Brown, a British illusionist famous for his mind-reading act, set out to prove just how susceptible we are to the many thousands of signals we’re exposed to each day. He approached two creatives from the advertising agency Saatchi & Saatchi for the “test.” On their journey to his office, Brown arranged for carefully placed clues to appear surreptitiously on posters and balloons, in shop windows, and on t-shirts worn by passing pedestrians.

Upon their arrival, the two creatives were given 20 minutes to come up with a campaign for a fictional taxidermy store. Derren Brown also left them a sealed envelope that was only to be opened once they’d presented their campaign. Twenty minutes later, they presented and then opened the envelope. Lo and behold, Derren Brown’s plans for the taxidermy store were remarkably similar to the ad campaign, with an astounding 95% overlap.

An interesting experiment, you may say, but hardly a trick you’d fall for. But bear this in mind — it’s more than likely you were well primed the last time you went shopping.


The article goes on to discuss how Whole Foods primes you to buy their produce. But as Lambert points out, “The parallels to the Obama campaign are obvious.

Obama was not a candidate who campaigned, he was a product that was marketed. Remember “Obama Girl” and the “1984” ads? The recite and response chants of “Fired up! Ready to go!” and staged fainting at Obama rallies? “MyBarackObama.com?”

It was all part of the marketing campaign.

Which reminds me:

The problem is people like me, and the people I work for.  I’m what they call a Qualitative Research Consultant, or QRC for short.  Here’s my website.  There’s even a whole association of us who meet regularly to discuss ideas and tactics.  Together with the AAPC, the MRA, the AMA, ESOMAR, and a whole host of other organizations you’ve never heard of, we have more power and control than you know.  We’re extremely good at what we do, and we do it all behind the scenes, appealing to and manipulating your subconscious brain in ways that your conscious brain has little to no control over.

Give us a little money to test some things out, and we can work magic.  Our business is persuasion, and we’re very good at it.  Just watch PBS Frontline’s series, The Persuaders to get just a small inkling of what you’re up against.  We can make a company that earns a 38% gross profit margin manufacturing purely propriety products seem hip, cool and progressive.  We can take sugar water and sell it back to you as a health drink, and even Whole Foods shoppers will believe it.  We can take 30 different brands of vodka with almost exactly the same ingredients, and make you understand instantly just what kind of person drinks which brand, and how much you should expect to pay for each, without a moment’s thought.  For any given category of products, I can show you a bunch of different brands, and you’ll be able to tell me a wealth of information about each one, despite the near absolute similarity of their actual products to one another.  One exercise we QRC’s like to conduct involves actually turning a brand into a person in a group discussion; it’s called personification.  And you wouldn’t believe how effectively and universally we can tailor a brand’s image, right down to what kind of car that “person” would drive, and what music he/she would listen to.


They can even make an empty suit look like the coolest man alive.

Knowledge is power – ignore the smoke and mirrors and pay attention to the men behind the curtain.


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41 Responses to Whole Foods Nation Zombies

  1. Dario says:

    They can even make an empty suit look like the coolest man alive.

    But there will be no second purchase.

    Bye, bye, Obama.

  2. Whatever you do, don’t think of Pink Elephants. And no, you don’t want a bag of peanuts. Lovely roasted peanuts. No, you don’t want those.

    • DandyTiger says:

      Damn you.

    • Pips says:

      Karen Blixen (Isak Dinesen) tells a wonderful story, similar to that. About how the only way to survive (in the wilderness somewhere) is not to think of the tiger’s eye – which she then repeats until all you ever think of is … the tiger’s eye.

      It’s in a documentary, wonderfully told in her slow, heavy accented English. But unfortunately it’s not on YouTube. 😦

    • djmm says:

      Candidate Obama did not really have any accomplishments, other than winning a race for Senate when his first opponent’s divorce papers were revealed. He did nothing in his previous job for the people he represented, though he did buy a nice house, and nothing after he became Senator. His resume was really pretty thin. Before becoming US Senator, I doubt he could have gotten a job as in-house counsel in most large US companies.

      If you were looking for substance, the marketing was more annoying than anything else. If you were looking for substance (as most here did).

      djmm

  3. yttik says:

    Fascinating stuff! Some people are definitely more vulnerable to being primed than others. And some people can be easily hynotised, while others just can’t relax enough.

    I know some people, smart people, who darned if they don’t buy every damn product they see on TV. Me, I’m chronically skeptical.

    Obama said, “cynicism is a sad kind of wisdom.” Yeah, well, people like us are needed to remind the rest of the world to look before you leap.

  4. Dario says:

    Satellite hits zombies…


    Satellite doom day set for Friday

    (CBS/AP) 
    CAPE CANAVERAL, Florida – NASA’s countdown is on. Circle Friday on your calendar.

    That’s the day when NASA scientists expect a plummeting six-ton satellite will fall to Earth. But beyond that, it’s still anybody’s guess where, exactly.

    More at link

  5. Pips says:

    For someone who claims to be so G-damned smart, the degree of offputting language and attitude Atkins uses/ reveals to sell his skills, is mind boggling.

  6. Three Wickets says:

    Check out the cool signature of the OMB Director. Wonder what a handwriting analyst would make of it.

    • Pips says:

      Couldn’t open the document. 😦

      But, as a sucker for beautiful signatures – and however much it hurts to admit it, lol – Obama’s signature always impressed me. Damn it’s nice. 😉

  7. Karma says:

    The current pic on Drudge of Google Exec Schmidt implies he swears to….live long and prosper. 🙂

  8. Mary says:

    New Marist Poll, taken Sept 13-14:

    By a margin of 49% to 36%, voters said they definitely plant to vote AGAINST Obama.

    Independents by 53% to 28% said they definitely plant to vote AGAINST him.

    Palin is now trailing Obama by just 5 point (49-44). Why? She LEADS Obama among Independents.

    Well, well, well.

  9. Three Wickets says:

    The entire US professional advertising industry was behind the Obama push in 2008. If there was ever any doubt, just check out the awesome prizes and celebration of OFA at the Cannes Global Ad Festival in 2009. It wasn’t an organized conspiracy as much as the fact that Obama was great for ratings and circulation and web traffic, and advertisers loved that. OFA and the MSM pumped up Obama, and advertisers threw gobs of money at the coverage…a hell of a lot more money than the one billion OFA spent on actual paid ads. Marketers spent 160 billion on all ads in 2008, and a small slice of that pie went to any and all content that involved the story of our new Messiah, the Obama. Another reason why the ad industry loved and supported Obama was because most of them on the agency side are hopelessly creative class hipster types.

    That said, the focus group facility that #thereisnospoonupmyass runs is not exactly Saatchi or Publicis or Omnicom. He is a small vendor. Not like the heads of some of these other conglomerates who had their heads in the 2008 campaign. #thereisnospoonupmyass is probably a busy political blogger and campaign activist.

    • Three Wickets says:

      And talk about white guilt. There are virtually no minorities in the big advertising agency world. So the whole race-related campaigning and popular culture image of Obama worked nicely for them.

  10. Sometimes in 2003, Ron Suskind interviewed a Bush official who told him: “We manufacture reality – it’s up to you to explain and debate it”
    The progressive blogs at the time called themselves “reality based”. That lasted a few years, then sometimes in 2007 I am guessing, the “manufacturers” took them over. For only a few pieces of silver – although a few were merely duped, I am sure. They just wanted to run with the cool kids.

  11. ralphb says:

    Palin up on Intrade…

  12. ralphb says:

    Holy smokes, volatility in the polls.

    Obama’s favorability numbers start to drop among African Americans

    New cracks have begun to show in President Obama’s support amongst African Americans, who have been his strongest supporters. Five months ago, 83 percent of African Americans held “strongly favorable” views of Obama, but in a new Washington Post-ABC news poll that number has dropped to 58 percent. That drop is similar to slipping support for Obama among all groups.
    (…)
    “The president cannot rest on his laurels with respect to black voter representation. Given the fact that people don’t necessarily strongly approve of President Obama, that could translate to less enthusiasm for his candidacy,” she said. “That doesn’t mean they will vote for the Republican candidate. It means they will not turn out.”

    • ralph- just saw that myself- he is SOOO done if he loses that voting bloc.
      The handwriting is on the wall.
      ? is- will the DNC step up and force him to step aside?

      • ralphb says:

        Great question. It kind of makes you wonder about losing the AA vote if someone else runs. Whole different question if he loses their support.

      • Monster from the Id says:

        The DNC force him to step aside? 😆

        The Dem establishment members decided as far back as 1972, if not earlier, that they would rather lose election after election than lose control of their party. I’m just old enough to remember “Democrats For Nixon”.

        The Dem elitists have never completely accepted either Clinton into their ranks, hence their rallying behind Obummer in 2008 (I realize you probably knew that already).

        • Three Wickets says:

          Yes but who are these elitist leaders in the Dem political establishment today. The Kennedys are gone.

        • Dario says:

          I think, now that the Kennedys are gone, there’s a vacuum in the Democratic Party, but the old guard, like Pelosi and other old timers, influence the direction of the party the most because they can collect lots of money for the party.

        • Remember admiring her when I lived in her district. Boy has my opinion of her changed.

        • Dario says:

          TW, Pelosi is the biggest reason for my anger of the Democratic Party. The defeat of Obama will also be her defeat. She’ll be out of the House in 2012, not because she can’t win (SF will always elect her.), but because the rest of the party will reject her as leader.

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