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Money, sex and power

What really makes your world go round? Is it money, sex or power? Or is it something more subtle?

Money, sex, power? Perhaps love?

What really makes your world go round? If you use the perspective Maslow kindly offered and superficially peruse social and broadcast media you might be led to conclude that society has spent the last few years regressing in this regard as quickly as Apple have issued each new generation of the iPhone.  

Social history will record that whilst vaccines, nylon, biotech, the jet engine, the silicon chip, networks, social media and nuclear energy all seemed like big ideas we’ve only just made it beyond our physiological needs for food, water, warmth and safety.  
 

Real human progress has been bogged down good and proper for two to three hundred years because it appears we’re still trying to tackle the need to both belong and build self-esteem.  A quick review of social and broadcast media shows these needs are front and centre, spinning the globe on its axis in ever decreasing circles.  They’re the same needs everyone had at the outset of the Industrial Revolution when, of course, tweeting was what birds did, Instagram was a short course in grammar and an apple was something you stole from an orchard. 
 

We’ve been distracted and knocked off course. Thousands of years ago the Greeks, Hindus and a multitude of philosophers from different cultures patiently demonstrated to us that the goal was insight-orientated. Insight determined through self-actualisation. They thought in terms of upgrading your own self-fulfilment rather than additional gigabytes, or super-HD. 

Maslow tried to remind us. Sadly however, self-actualisation and self-reflection in order to gain insight (into other people’s worlds) has been completely replaced by the need to belong and assert self-esteem. Habitually we respond ASAP whilst on the hoof via WhatsApp, Twitter, Instagram and other forms of media tackling urgent messages, posts and annoying opinionated articles (like this one). 

It’s as though we’re stuck in some weird vacuum in which there is no real insight. We’re repeatedly trying to prove to ourselves we really do exist and we’re doing very well in that existence. Rarely do we accept ourselves for who we are and take a greater interest in others.
 

Perhaps it’s the net result of global politics, no real innovation for the last few decades, shrinking economies and a lack of inspiring leadership or celebrity. Perhaps history will show that Love Island, Instagram, Ed Sheeran, Netflix, Trump and Boris, to name a few, will have much to be held accountable for because they set such poor examples. 
 

Particularly Boris. 
 

Or perhaps it is because we’ve actually lost track of what those great philosophers were on about way back when. What really makes the world go round is insight. Not power, not sex, not money and not even love. 
 

What do we mean by insight, why is it so powerful and why is it so important? 
 

Insight is something you have when you use your imagination and work out how to make someone’s world a better place – in ways they hadn’t even imagined for themselves. 

It comes about when you gather all of the factual findings you can and put yourself into someone else’s shoes. You combine your imagination with the imagination of all your collaborators and look out of the eyes of your target audience. Then you’ll have a moment of inspiration. You’ll have an idea and you’ll know what’s going to be great for them. 
 

You’ll know what it is, you’ll know how to articulate it and you’ll know how to reach them. 

That is why it is insight that makes the world go round rather than money, sex, power and perhaps not even love. Fun as these things are, if you think about it, they’re not actually achievable without insight. I think Buddha, Plato, Shakespeare and more recently Taylor Swift have all pointed this out. 
 

All of which leaves you, and us, with one heck of an opportunity. If we can get over ourselves for a moment or two we can set about developing some real insights. 

At Page & Page this belief sits central to our business. We do our best to get over ourselves and to be considerate of others. We don’t pretend we always succeed but we do our best. 

It is even enshrined in our process: Discovery, Define, Develop and Deliver.



To download our follow-up 12 page booklet Seduce anyone in 4 simple steps – Why no marketing campaign succeeds without an insight just click here https://pageandpage.uk.com/brand-communication-marketing/money-sex-and-power.

AUTHOR
Stephen Page
Director, Brand and Strategy

6th September 2018

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Page & Page and Partners

+44 (0)20 8617 8250

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