How DARE They! Just Say NO To …

… All those who disapprove of the toned bare arms of 45-year-old First Lady Michelle Obama: Why not focus instead on the hugs her arms bestow on all the children she meets, or her open arms welcoming military families who visit the White House, or her helping hands at local soup kitchens? Is there another First Lady in recent memory who rightfully deserves a round of applause all three? Just Say NO!

… Writers of Desperate Housewives, for promulgating the myth (March 15th) that a woman of 43 (Lynette/Felicity Huffman) is too old to be in advertising and marketing. Some of the most memorable marketing campaigns in history were created by WOMEN OVER 40!

  • Shirley Polykoff was 48 when she created “Is It True Blondes Have More Fun?” for Clairol.
  • Shelley Lazurus was well into her 50s and the CEO of Ogilvy and Mather, when she led the creation of the breakthrough award-winning ad campaign for Dove soap featuring normal women (i.e., not models), which is still running and has kept Dove the best-selling soap brand in the world.
  • Charlotte Beers, Lazurus’ predecessor at Ogilvy, was 62 when Fortune magazine placed her on the cover of their first issue to feature the most powerful women in America (1997), for her achievements in the advertising industry.
  • Lauren Zalaznick, the head of Bravo TV, is 44. Under her helm, Top Chef, Project Runway, and Shear Genius have become huge hits, edgy programs that command advertising dollars from some of the leading brands in marketing.

So, when clients come brandishing big bucks for marketing campaigns targeting smart women, does anyone think they want their brands in the hands of some inexperienced account rep? Just Say NO!