Jan. 23, 2022

Ed Thompson: Marketing Consultant and Educator

Ed Thompson: Marketing Consultant and Educator
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Now and Zen Japan welcomes Mr. Ed Thompson, a Marketing Consultant and the founder of Concept Design. This episode we share beers and talk about his 20+ years in Japan and professional career in marketing, branding, advertising, and academia. He has also been a lecturer at Temple University for over 15 years. Ed is a straight talker and has strong opinions when it comes to the business of marketing. We discuss his early years in Japan getting beat up with bamboo sticks everyday, working with bureaucrats, and starting his own business after only five years in Japan. Ed has a fascinating theory on why Japanese brand logos tend to be words rather than pictograms, how to find your Personal Branding "voice" from hating-on the competition, then Ed gets deep and philosophical when analyzing Wabi-Sabi and Kintsugi and how this is related to perseverance and the Japanese human spirit. Other topics we discuss:

  • An interesting way to translate the  word "marketing" 
  • Studying Japanese at a martial arts university
  • Understanding self-worth and context when giving yourself an appropriate business title
  • Why his list of clients in Japan are predominantly foreign affiliated
  • How "creative" departments differ in Japan and the main role of ad agencies
  • "Making order out of chaos" . . .  the driver for Ed's passion for marketing
  • Was Omotenashi developed as a social norm or a way to make customers more receptive to your brand?
  • "People will believe what you tell them unless you give them a reason to disbelieve"
  • In Japan, "Being present is more important than being whole"
  • Why email remains the most important CRM data
  • His upcoming classes at Temple and takeaways students can expect

Concept Design: https://conceptdesign.io/
Ed Thompson: https://www.linkedin.com/in/ethompson/

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