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Beware: This Puppy Will Make You Want to Buy Toilet Paper
by Brian W. Vaszily for

Brian VaszilyAbout
Brian Vaszily

Brian Vaszily (pronounced "vay zlee") is a bestselling author, positive change advocate, speaker/organizer and sometimes funny guy whose life mission is to help others explore, experience and enjoy life more intensely while bypassing the traps that would hamper that goal -- particularly unscrupulous marketing and rampant consumerism.

Brian is the founder of, has authored several books including the acclaimed novella Beyond Stone and Steel (see for some reviews), and with over fourteen years of marketing management experience is President of the TopMarketingPro consultancy.

In addition to his How We Get You columns here at SixWise, Brian also leads the popular blog, "The 'Live Deeper' Blog by Brian Vaszily." He has appeared on many TV and radio shows and been quoted in many publications regarding his books, columns, articles and ideas. Brian Vaszily was born and raised in Chicago, growing up on the northwest side in the blue-collar Portage-Cragin neighborhood. Brian and his wife and two children currently reside outside Chicago, Illinois.

Focused. Self-aware. Confident. Content.

These states of being totally stink.

Yeah, I know for you they are among the most powerful and valuable character traits you could possibly achieve. What I mean is, if you do achieve them, it totally stinks for ME.

That's because I am a typical big-time modern marketer -- greedy, good at what I do, irresponsible often bordering on unethical, quite successful -- and some of the highly effective marketing tactics I routinely con you with depend on you lacking in those four areas.

So in order to keep manipulating your beliefs so you keep taking the actions I want you to take -- like buying the breakfast cereal or toilet paper or politician I am hired to sell you -- here's what I need from you:

1) Do Not Focus On What I Am About to Tell You (and while you're at it, do not think I am trying to use reverse psychology on you)

Please remain unfocused on me and my peers in marketing and the constant stream of propaganda we inject into nearly everything you watch, listen to or read these days.

I need you to keep looking over there, where we always have some insignificant but interesting sideshows to divert your attention -- hey, look what that irresponsible Brittany Spears is doing now, can you believe it! -- while we keep doing what we're doing over here.

It is very important that you keep believing that your habits, beliefs and lifestyle are not all that influenced by marketing and therefore it is not all that deserving of your focus.

Even though spending on marketing by U.S. companies was about $1.074 trillion in 2005 -- equal to about 9% of the entire gross domestic product of the nation, while by comparison 6.7% of the gross domestic product is spent on elementary, secondary and postsecondary education combined -- it couldn't possibly have that much of an impact on you. I mean, you're not in debt or overweight or riddled with too much stress or too little time or too few friends or a general feeling of malaise at the shallowness of the culture around you, right?

In fact, forget it. I need you not to focus on what I am revealing here, nor on what I reveal in all of my "How We Get You" columns. Stop reading this now. Go grab a can of Pringles and find out what monumental blunders Brittany Spears is up to these days.

This is Brittany Spears and her baby. Focus on everything stupid she does. It is far more important than anything important.

2) Be Aware that It's Great When You Laugh, Cry & Get Very Angry Without Pondering Why

I want you to have certain emotional reactions to my marketing -- to laugh, cry, get angry, think "Awww, how sweet" -- but I sure don't want you aware of your emotional reactions (a big difference.)

Because you see, if you are aware of your responses, that will prompt you to THINK about all the tricks used in the marketing to draw those emotions out of you.

That will lead you to THINK about the real motivation for making you all emotional in the first place.

And time and again you will come to the right conclusion -- I am trying to nab you emotionally so you will experience a rash, unconsidered connection to whatever I am selling and immediately to eventually buy it.

Of course, you being conscious of this tactic completely kills the tactic.

So no, I don't want you aware of yourself and of your emotional reactions to my marketing. Because then nineteen times out of twenty you will realize you don't really want or need or believe what you otherwise would have wanted, needed or believed if you just let my marketing do its thing.

I need to be able to continue having my politicians serve sound bites that ignite your emotions so you feel they share your beliefs and -- even though you haven't even really investigated them -- you vote for them.

I need you to experience those cuddly cute babies and puppies in my toilet paper commercials so, without even being aware of it, when you see those same babies and puppies on the toilet paper package in the store you will revisit those same emotions without even being aware of it -- and dish out the extra 99 cents to buy my brand.

Self-awareness is so over-rated. Just do it!

This cute baby picture has been placed here to make you all warm and fuzzy inside and to therefore subconsciously like my column even more. If babies aren't your thing try the puppy picture below.

3) Don't Think I Am About to Pull a Fast One on You

I am actually not about to "pull a fast one" on you. But if I were you and reading this, I might feel that way momentarily ... or at least a bit let down.

Why? Because you will have to wait a week for Part Two of this column.

In my column next week you'll learn one of the most personally beneficial secrets of all: how I, as a typical big-time modern marketer, viciously prey on your insecurities, and why my peers and I work very hard to make sure you are never, ever, ever content -- ESPECIALLY if you are a woman. (So if you seek contentment, you'll definitely want to read this. If you don't seek contentment, you'll definitely want to read this.)

There are four honest reasons I need to extend this column to a Part Two next week:

  1. The topic of why marketers love it when you're insecure and unhappy and how they help provoke those states is super-extremely important to you and requires a full column. You will even discover the 4th Real Rule of Marketing that only those in the biz were previously privy to AND as a bonus you'll discover "the fruity snack kids will adore."

  2. The editor said I must make my columns about a thousand words or less, and this word -- "flibbertigibbet" -- is word #956 so I am running out of space

  3. If you are not already subscribed to the free newsletter so you can get my weekly columns, I hope this will be an extra nudge to do so. (Just scroll down a bit and input your email address and tap Subscribe!)

  4. My confidence is shot and I'm not content. In doing research for this column I came across an ad for an elliptical machine with before and after pictures of a man named Bruce. I'm closer to Bruce before than Bruce after. So I need to go work out.

Till next week ... stay focused and aware of what really matters ... and have a great Independence Day (every day.)

Surely this adorable puppy will make you love this column even more. It works for toilet paper, so it should work for me.

OH SO IMPORTANT NOTE ABOUT THE AUTHOR: For those who may not yet know, I am no longer a "typical big-time modern marketer." That is just a literary device I used to make you think, "Hey, this typical big-time modern marketer guy is revealing marketing's tricks and traps. What's going on here?" Fact is, though, I once really was a typical big-time modern marketer guy. But then I had the big revelation that prompted me to end that and become a more conscientious marketer whose personal mission is to reveal all the tricks and traps the typical big-time modern marketers are using on you. Check out my other recent columns on this just to make sure I'm telling the truth.

U.S. Marketing Spending To Exceed $1 Trillion In 2005 Blackfriars Communications, Inc

The National Center for Education Statistics


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