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Finding sinspiration

Sending your staff out to carouse in Vegas sounds like a bad idea. But Organic thinks it's the perfect place for marketers to find "sinspiration."

By Sidra Durst, Business 2.0 Magazine

(Business 2.0 Magazine) -- Team Gluttony crowded around one of its members, admiring the tattoo he'd just gotten on his bicep--the highlight of a day spent hitting the Las Vegas hot spots.

Your typical debauched weekend? No.

For these employees of Organic, a San Francisco-based digital marketing firm, it was professional development. "I can't believe we're getting paid to do this," marveled Eric Grenier, the company's Chrysler account manager when he's not gallivanting around Sin City.

In February, 30 employees took their turn at Camp Organic, a quarterly three-day anthropological safari-cum-marketing exercise that uses the seven deadly sins as inspiration for killer ad campaigns.

Employees break into seven teams, each with an assigned vice. Then they comb bachelor parties and all-you-can-eat buffets to observe people overindulging and find out what really turns them on. "Whether you're marketing high-fashion eyewear or snacks," CEO Mark Kingdon says, "aren't you trying to create an emotional association akin to desire, bordering on lust?"

The payoff: keen insight into the human condition and, yes, a lot of fun. Top of page

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