Oblique marketing strategies

Picture of Oblique Strategies cards 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.

  1. Be more specific
  2. Be more emotional
  3. Subvert clichés
  4. Go across the street
  5. Who is in a similar business?
  6. Cement? Consolidate?
  7. Turn it upside down
  8. Which medium?
  9. Be quick and dirty
  10. Make an exhaustive list of everything you might do & do the last thing on the list
  11. Take a risk
  12. Work against your better judgement
  13. Take away the elements in order of apparent non-importance
  14. BANJO – Bang Another Nasty Job Out
  15. Phone a Friend
  16. Use an egg timer to get started
  17. Faced with a choice, do both
  18. Do something really tiny but exquisite
  19. Don’t be frightened to display your talents
  20. They can only say no
  21. Ask for more money
  22. Use ‘unqualified’ people
  23. Do as much as you can for a short period of time
  24. Bridges -build -burn
  25. Tidy up
  26. Do the words need changing?
  27. Shut up for a moment
  28. Call ten people who don’t want your product
  29. Remove the error from something human
  30. Discard an axiom
  31. Listen to the quiet voice
  32. Buy a strange magazine
  33. Give the game away
  34. Use fewer words
  35. Repeat your greatest success
  36. What would Microsoft do?
  37. What would Linus Torvalds do?
  38. Just carry on
  39. Reinforce success
  40. Spectrum analysis
  41. What mistakes did you make last time?
  42. Courageous spending
  43. Do it for nothing
  44. State the problem in words as clearly as possible
  45. Change the order
  46. Cluster analysis
  47. Do something boring
  48. Overtly resist change
  49. Accept advice
  50. Work at a different speed
  51. Down the pub
  52. Free associate
  53. Go for a run
  54. Build a bridge
  55. Do the things you love and the money will take care of itself
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7 Responses to Oblique marketing strategies

  1. YGG says:

    56. Find all the reasons why they don’t need you (and then ignore them)

  2. Phil says:

    How about a site that just flashes one of these randomly? I’ll volunteer.

  3. There’s already a very fine Mac OS X desktop widget for this — it even includes all four editions of Oblique Strategies to choose from.

    I believe there’s already a web implementation too — this ain’t new!

  4. There are already web implementations and a Mac OS widget – that’s where I got the idea from. However, I have amended and added and extended the idea for marketing purposes. A new site for these strategies would be helpful because you wouldn’t get them from one of hte existing sites.


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