How to do marketing

Oblique marketing strategies

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Picture of Oblique Strategies cards - marketing strategies Brian Eno's website describes Oblique Strategies: "In 1975, in collaboration with the artist Peter Schmidt, Eno also developed the 'Oblique Strategies' set of problem-solving cards for artists. Each card states an act or attitude which can make an immediate intervention into the creative process."


I borrowed the basic idea to come up with a deck of Oblique marketing strategies. You can print them on cards or use a random number generator to pick one. You can also view and interactive version on the Articulate website. I'd welcome additional suggestions.

  • Be more specific
  • Be more emotional
  • Subvert clichés
  • Go across the street
  • Who is in a similar business?
  • Cement? Consolidate?
  • Turn it upside down
  • Which medium?
  • Be quick and dirty
  • Make an exhaustive list of everything you might do & do the last thing on the list
  • Take a risk
  • Work against your better judgement
  • Take away the elements in order of apparent non-importance
  • BANJO – Bang Another Nasty Job Out
  • Phone a Friend
  • Use an egg timer to get started
  • Faced with a choice, do both
  • Do something really tiny but exquisite
  • Don't be frightened to display your talents
  • They can only say no
  • Ask for more money
  • Use 'unqualified' people
  • Do as much as you can for a short period of time
  • Bridges -build -burn
  • Tidy up
  • Do the words need changing?
  • Shut up for a moment
  • Call ten people who don’t want your product
  • Remove the error from something human
  • Discard an axiom
  • Listen to the quiet voice
  • Buy a strange magazine
  • Give the game away
  • Use fewer words
  • Repeat your greatest success
  • What would Microsoft do?
  • What would Linus Torvalds do?
  • Just carry on
  • Reinforce success
  • Spectrum analysis
  • What mistakes did you make last time?
  • Courageous spending
  • Do it for nothing
  • State the problem in words as clearly as possible
  • Change the order
  • Cluster analysis
  • Do something boring
  • Overtly resist change
  • Accept advice
  • Work at a different speed
  • Down the pub
  • Free associate
  • Go for a run
  • Build a bridge
  • Do the things you love and the money will take care of itself

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Matthew Stibbe

Matthew is founder and CEO of Articulate Marketing.