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Publisher's Summary

The founders of the fastest-growing advertising agency in America explain how to ignite the kind of marketing explosions that will capture customers' attention. We all want to have our message heard. In Bang! Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval tell us how. They and their talented colleagues are the brains behind a host of memorable and highly successful ads, from the enormously successful AFLAC duck to the irresistibly sentimental "Kodak moment" to Herbal Essences' outrageous "Totally Organic Experience." Kaplan Thaler and Koval offer savvy advice and proven strategies for getting out a loud, clear, attention-grabbing message about any product or service.
Presenting an arsenal of "big bang" ideas, the authors interweave entertaining recollections about their successes and failures, as well as those of other companies, with specific guidelines on establishing an atmosphere conducive to innovative breakthroughs. They show why having "enough" time to work on a project can be a disadvantage and why working in a small, cramped space is often the best way to come up with big ideas. Their insights into using intuition to capture just the right idea or phrase offer a new perspective on shaping and sustaining a marketing presence.
Full of colorful anecdotes and inspiring accounts of campaigns that have propelled revenues and dramatically increased market shares, Bang! shows managers how to create a marketing campaign that cuts through the message clutter and creates a marketing explosion.
©2003 Linda Kaplan Thayer and Robin Koval (P)2003 Random House, Inc.
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Critic Reviews

"Although the author's advice is targeted primarily toward businesses and other publicists, the glitzy anecdotal writing is witty and informative enough to appeal to those interested in advertising and popular culture." (Publishers Weekly)
"If Al Gore had had this book in 2000, George W. Bush wouldn't be sitting in the White House." (James Carville, author and Democratic strategist)
"Linda Kaplan Thaler and Robin Koval 'get it' from every angle. This [audio] book is full of extraordinary insight on effective message delivery." (Gordon Bethune, Chairman and CEO, Continental Airlines)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
2 out of 5 stars
By Daniel Henage on 12-18-03

What a disappointment!

After seeing a rating of 4.3 stars on, I happily downloaded the book expecting a treat. What a disappointement! I've been an Audible subscriber for some time now, and this has been the first book I haven't finished. I got about one quarter of the way through and deleted it.

Pros: Some good stories and ideas (but nothing that you couldn't find in any other marketing book of higher quality).

Cons: As another reviewer suggested, the author merely gives examples of successful ads and tries to explain how they worked because they went against the grain and got a lot of attention. Well, I could have told you that! The real problem lies in the author's conclusions. The underlying theme seems to be: "Do the opposite of whatever you think will work best." If you think an ad is tasteless, inappropriate, and irrelevant, then run it because it will be a great success. If the ad has nothing whatsoever to do with the product, then it is more likely to succeed. For example, one of her "bright" ideas is: "You must forget about what makes sense...illogical thinking means that when you're asked to promote a bottle of water, you realize that water is the last thing you should focus on."

Conclusion: I give this book a rating of 1.5 stars. Don't waste your time on this book.

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23 of 24 people found this review helpful

1 out of 5 stars
By J on 03-19-05

Bust!! Wasted my money on Bang!!

As an engineer turned entrepreneur, I thought this audio book would be of great value to me. I was wrong.
While this agency has great creative, the book is light on content, with asides that are consistently distracting and of little or no value. Platitudes like "Creative people need special working environments" or "flat structures are better for small teams" seem to make up the bulk of the management advice.
Finally, as a small businessperson, hearing about how "we won a 15 M dollar contract for advertising" and not "we generated 50 M dollars worth of new business" through campaign x reminded me why a typical marketing exec will be late on our list of hires.
Avoid this book, and watch an AFLAC commercial instead--the duck can communicate more about marketing than this book.

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8 of 8 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
1 out of 5 stars
By Matthew on 04-25-06

The 7 Hour Advert

I listened intently for the entire duration of this, what I can only describe as 'advert' for the author's own advertising/marketing company KPG. Time after time she tells us about how she, often singlehandedly from her own self-confessed brilliance, won the account, came up with the concept and project managed and wrote the theme tune - and each time ending the anecdote with the phrase '...and the client LLLLOVED it!'

We are given very few new ways of thinking about marketing, advertising etc... In fact the entire book is filled with cliches on how to run a business. I admit the these cliches are in fact good advice for anyone new to business, I just expected more from this book mainly as it is true that KPG have had some really successful campaigns over the years. Unfortunately the only piece of advice I could gain from this book (and I did so indirectly) was that as a company, self publicity is everything - which explains excactly what this book is, a brand-awareness exercise for the author's company!

I did not LLLLLOVE it! I'm afraid, Linda.

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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