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Ring in the Olympics

pm411_logo It’s 8-8-08. The Olympics start today at 8:08:08, Beijing time, this evening. A survey showed that 92 percent of the people could correctly identify the Olympic rings. That makes the Olympic rings the most recognized symbol in the world. 86 percent of those questioned associated the Olympic rings with the world's greatest sporting event.



The meaning behind the symbol

This got us thinking about branding and the importance of having a recognizable symbol that conveys the message you’re trying to convey. Pierre de Coubertin, the father of the modern day Olympics, came up with the five rings.

The five rings represent the five continents that embraced the Olympic movement. We found that kind of funny, since we thought there were seven continents! Antarctica obviously doesn’t participate and Europe and Asia were considered to be one continent.

The rings are linked to represent the union of man. The colors of the rings represented the flags of all the countries at the time the symbol was created. They sit on a white background, to represent all the nations of the world.

The symbol and the message are inter-related

As you can see, a tremendous amount of thought went into creating the most recognizable symbol in the world. We bet that you had a general sense of what the rings meant even before you read the discussion above. It’s easy to get.

The symbol reinforces the message, and the message reinforces symbol.

Now apply this to your brand. What do you do? What problem do you solve? Incorporate that into your brand imaging.

We probably found this study so interesting because we’re in the process of coming up with a new symbol for Bigg Success. We have some additions coming soon to our site. We’re developing a new symbol to convey exactly what bigg success means. Keep checking in for more bigg news!

Jake’s Take

Comedian Jake Novak dropped by the show to share his take on this year’s Olympics. A number of companies line up to became official Olympic sponsors. Jake’s found out who the top 5 REAL sponsors of the Beijing Olympics are:

#5 – HGH: The official steroid of the 2008 Beijing Games

#4 – Smog: the official pollution of the 2008 Beijing Games

#3 – Chinese-Made Toys: The official choking hazard of the 2008 Beijing Games

#2 – Poison: The official dog and cat food of the 2008 Beijing Games

… and the #1 supporter is a dual sponsorship

Nightsticks and Tear Gas: the official anti-protest weapons of the 2008 Beijing Games

Thanks, Jake for sharing your wit with us!



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The Official Website of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games 

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The Most Important Person To Laugh At




We’ll stray from our traditional show summary format so you can read how George and Mary-Lynn put this concept to use!

George: Today, we’ll talk about laughing at yourself and the benefits that go along with it. Laughing is good for you. Research shows that people who get in a few bigg belly laughs every day are healthier! And I find that the older I get, the bigger my belly laugh gets!

Mary-Lynn: That just means there’s more belly laugh to love! Another benefit is that it keeps you from taking yourself too seriously. And I learned a long time ago not to take myself too seriously … nobody else does!

George: It also endears people to you. People like people who can laugh at themselves.

Mary-Lynn: And, if they may relate to what you said, that makes it even funnier. I always feel good when someone makes fun of themselves, because then they’re not making fun of me. And believe me, I provide a lot of material!

George: I’ll say, Mary-Lynn!

Mary-Lynn: Now you’re making fun of me!

George: I found that it can also release the pressure in a tense situation. The conversation heats up as people stake out positions. If I say something silly about myself, everybody takes a brief break. Then the conversation can be productive again.

How to learn to laugh at yourself

Mary-Lynn: Some people just don’t have that sense of humor. So let’s offer some tips on how to learn to laugh at yourself.

All you have to do is look like me! First, talk to yourself. My dad said, “Talking to yourself is the best way to make sure intelligent questions get asked and intelligent answers are given!” The point is to make yourself laugh, but do it quietly.

Mary-Lynn: Second, become a student of humor. As you watch a show or listen to a comedian, think about how you could use the funny line. Review conversations. Have you ever thought, “Oh, I wished I had said …” The more you rehearse, the quicker you’ll get.

Third, it has to be spontaneous. That’s what normally makes it funny – the element of surprise. One easy way to do this is to take something that’s memorable from the discussion you’ve been having and bring it up again, turning it on yourself.

Well, George, if we had said anything memorable I would give an example! So we’ll just move on!

2 things to avoid with self-deprecating humor

Mary-Lynn: Don’t make fun of things you’re insecure about. It serves no purpose and it makes other people uncomfortable. You have to laugh at yourself with confidence, because then people know it’s a joke.

Don’t create a bad perception with your self-deprecating humor. For example, you may be confident in your work ethic. You might look bad if you talk about how lazy you are.

But George, one of your favorite lines, when people ask you what you do is, “As little as possible.”

George: That’s because it’s true!

Mary-Lynn: See, there you go again!

Yeah, but I immediately follow it up with the real answer.

After they’ve laughed WITH you laughing AT yourself! What’s your favorite self-deprecating line? Share it with us by leaving a Comment! What’s our bigg quote today, George?

George: Our bigg quote today comes from Shirley MacLaine, who said,“I’ve don’t know which life to make fun of me in!” Seriously, she said …

“The person who knows how to laugh at himself will never cease to be amused.”

And thanks to myself, I’m easily amused!

Next time, it will be St. Patrick’s Day. So we’ll ask a question – is it better to be lucky or smart?

Until then, here’s to your bigg success!


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(Image by Sam Foster, CC 2.0)