Christine Barney|Dec 19, 2013

With the end of the year come numerous “best of” lists. This year, I thought I’d combine two of my favorite subjects – marketing communications and escapist television – to create a list of lessons we can learn from pithy quotes delivered by some favorite TV characters.

While there are many great shows, I tried to pick quotes that would stand alone whether or not you are a fan. And, if you’re a regular follower, well, you’ll enjoy them even more.

5) “If I had known the world was ending, I’d have brought better books.” –Dale Horvath, “The Walking Dead”

Examining the potential for a zombie apocalypse is always a good way to start off a new year. Isn’t it nice to know that even faced with terrible danger, people still want a good story to help pass the time? Whether the tale is printed on paper or exists only in electronic form, remember it’s still about content. (P.S. Paper books are more likely to survive the apocalypse.)

4) “Life is like Facebook. People will like and comment on your problems, but no one will solve them because they’re busy updating theirs.” ―Aria Montgomery, “Pretty Little Liars”

Yes, we live in world where everything is shared, but in that information overload is anything being accomplished? Don’t mistake casual responses for true engagement and involvement. And here’s a twofer on this ranking to class this post up a bit (and reinforce the sometimes insincerity of digital friend communications): The Dowager Countess on Downtown Abbey says, “I have plenty of friends I don’t like.”

3)  “No more half measures.” ―Mike Ehrmantraut, “Breaking Bad”

Go all the way – with your ideas, your creativity and your execution. Of course in this show, execution literally meant execution as Mike relates the dangers of giving someone a second chance.  Note, there were several iconic phrases from this show that almost made my list. If you’re interested, check out Walt’s quote “I’m the one who knocks” or Walt’s “I’m not in the meth business. I’m in the empire business.”

2) “Stick them with the pointy end.” ―Jon Snow, “Game of Thrones”

What can we learn from middle age weaponry? Well, aside from making sure you know how to use your tools, I like the directness of this quote: Get to the heart of the matter and don’t be squeamish.

1) “I’m in charge of thinking of things before people know they need them.” –Joan Harris, “Mad Men”

I love this quote, not only for its bravado but it fits right in with rbb’s Breakout Brand philosophy of creating the future for your customers. When you put the customers first and focus on delivering on their needs, everybody wins.


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