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Marketing Today: The Age of Extremes

David Sherry
2 min read

My friend Marty just launched PoolsideFM.

Him and his team absolutely nailed it. There is so much care for the details, and with this project, he’s built his own little mini-universe. One that rapidly spread around the web via word of mouth.

It’s been highlighted on Tech Crunch. Vice. And spread all over twitter.

We live in the Age of Extremes.

Ideas that start and win at the edges are the ideas that break through to the mainstream.

Something I’ve been realizing for almost my entire career is taking shape now for me, and I want to explain and continue to explore this topic.

And, in the age of extremes – it is the extreme (ideas) that help create something of value.

A country rap song launched on on Tik Tok. A razor club launched with a funny video. An app who’s photos disappear right after you send them.


Because there is so much noise, that we only notice the new. The “sneezers” live at the edges. They’re ready for the next idea that will delight them and unite them.

Brands today should be aware that reducing “risk” in the emotional and artistic realm, is actually increasing the risk of being ignored.

Of course, quality matters. Today that is a given.

But can you manufacture a hit? Can you focus group your way to a success?

I’m not so sure.

Your best bet is quitting the focus groups and doing something new, unique, inspired, and for the first time.

It means holding onto and creating that one, semi-crazy idea in the back of your head, instead of snuffing it out from the voices of “reason” that say it won’t work.

To get people interested, be interesting.

To get people to share, find a small group and delight them with an idea that has a point of view and a strong reason for existing:

That reason? Because you want it to.

To be interesting, you need to let your creative expression fly untamed by voices that make you boring.

Introducing Art x Attention.

I'm testing out a new newsletter to cover more stories like Marty’s, about ideas that spread because they lived on the edges, not because they shot for the mainstream.

We’re going to discuss what it’s like creating these types of ideas, and with luck I’ll pull in some of these founders/creators to add their few cents on the topic.

This letter is about building a tribe of people who want to create something new, something different, and something with a unique footprint and soul.

So what can you do?

This is the call to action, the qualities I believe help artists and creators develop value in today’s world. These will develop over time as we explore:

  1. Increase and protect the EDGES of your work towards the weird, new and emotionally risky.
  2. Understand your risks / downsides.
  3. Optimize for serendipity.
  4. Keep going so long as you have hope.
  5. Prepare and improve while you wait – by honing your skill, ready for the spotlight.

If I had to sum it up in one sentence:

Do that which feels uncomfortable socially but satisfying emotionally and creatively.

Be an artist.

An artist brings something new into the world for the first time.

Take the leap, do something different.

Join my crew of artists and creative risk takers.

Join this newsletter here.

xx David