I hate it when other people make me look stupid. (I really don't need any help.)
That's exactly what you did last Thursday night when Steven Colbert announced that you were his new integrated sponsor.
I'm not sure which genius on your team at Nabisco thought it would be a good idea to send a brand guidelines memo along with a box of crackers to Mr. Colbert. If you were expecting him to do anything other than make fun of it, maybe you should have watched the show, say, once.
The problem isn't with the brand guidelines memo. I've written a few. They're all jargon-filled missives about brand archetypes, personality, values, ideal customer profiles, symbols, usage occasions and the like. And really, yours isn't that bad.
Brand guidelines are important for the team creating the ads, websites and promotions. But do you know who they are not important for? A comedian like Colbert whose whole schtick is based upon biting the hand that feeds him.
Sending him that memo was like putting a lame barasingha in a tiger cage.
Now everyone knows we marketeers are navel-gazing twits who write incomprehensible sentences like "Wheat Thins keep you on the path to, and proud of, doing what you love to do, no matter what that is."
The brand guidelines are in place so you, Mr. Brand Manager, don't align yourself with comedians like Colbert – or anyone else on Comedy Central, a channel dedicated to making fun of everyone and everything on God's green earth – if you don't want to become the butt of his joke.
If you even thought there was a chance Mr. Colbert was going to leak the contents of your memo and put 17 Wheat Thins in his mouth – really, if you watched the show, you'd know that chance was about 99.99997% – you should have looked for another Sponsortunity.
I hope we've all learned something here today.