How Can We Help Dave And His Company With Their Marketing And Pr Issues?

Dave has been getting a lot of publicity lately: 


 


http://health.usnews.com/health-news/health-wellness/articles/2014/12/24/the-bulletproof-diet-is-anything-but


 


http://gizmodo.com/bulletproof-coffee-debunking-the-hot-buttered-hype-1681321467


 


 


A lot of it isn't good.


 


Some reviews really emphasize the more radical claims and cite lack of research and profit-seeking. It's a shame because while I also think the overall tone of the website and company marketing could be a lot less snake-oily, the products and the information can be really beneficial if they would be presented in the right way.


 


Take a look at the website for Apple, or Nest/Dropcam, or more relatedly, Thorne-Research or wellness-FX or even Mark's Daily Apple.  They are clean and simple, provide directly useful information, don't make outlandish used car salesman/snake-oily type claims and just present the product in a clean and thoughtful way that is respectful of people's intelligence. Bad examples are Mercola or Ben Greenfield, and .. BP and Upgraded Self. 


 


My suggestions: 


 


1. Cite the research front and center. And quote from the research directly -- not just a vague citation that when you look closely you see that it doesn't really support the claim. Take the quote at length if necessary. Many people will want to be geeky about it and will devour that research. Many others won't be interested in the details, but will take comfort that at least there is some evidence and research basis for the claims. Don't just have a research tab as the last tab on the product pages. And then it only shows links with no quotes or analysis. That is not v useful. 


 


2. Stop using cheesy snake-oily phrases like "Brain Octane" and "boost iq"  "supercharge" "turbo-charge""upgrades your head."  Nonsense like that is just insulting and I've left the site many times when I've had my fill of that nonsense. (Ben Greenfield's site is even worse on this.)


 


3. Put up or shut up on the coffee mycotoxin issue. I think we were promised research about the mycotoxins in coffee beans, or better, in hot brewed coffee, but I haven't seen anything and there isnt' anything in the research tab of the coffee product page. If the research to support the claims doesn't exist then the claims should probably be dropped because it just isn't plausible as an anecdotal claim when there are so many other sources saying the mycotoxins in other coffee beans is low to non-existent and doesn't affect most people. Or at least tone down the claims to make it more plausible such as "Coffee brewed with BP coffee beans has a mycotoxin level of X, while coffee brewed with Starbucks or Peets or whatever coffee has a mycotoxin level ranging from y-z. Some people are more sensitive to even low levels of mycotoxins and may benefit from drinking lower mycotoxin products."  How hard would that be? 


 


 


Any other suggestions to help Dave and BP Co? 


 


Comments

  • i really agree with you on the snake oily marketing. As much as i have huge respect for Dave, brand names like "unfair advantage"  "choline force" are just ridiculous,  anyone who sells a product called unfair advantage is just deemed a snake oil seller instantly.  I believe in daves claims about myotoxins in coffee, whenever i have starbucks coffee jam pissing and shitting for hours after it. 


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  • drumminangoleirodrumminangoleiro ✭✭✭
    edited February 2015

    i agree with your points, but ultimately don't really care that much because i just get the products that work for me and i don't care if other people buy them really or what they're called, as long as they work and they're successful enough to continue being sold. i don't have any unrealistic hopes that bulletproof is going to revolutionize the food/supplement industry and be available on every corner, and don't really care if uninformed people think that i'm falling for some snake oil. 




  • Embrace the diet wars and only then will you know true inner peace.
  • Some good points here. -- A ton of the BP stuff is in a vacuum and it's so difficult constantly explaining to people the idea of fat not clogging your arteries and fruit being a a fake health food. -- The worldly collective wisdom just hasn't caught up to a lot of this yet, sadly enough.


     


    I think this will gradually make way and catch on more rapidly, but for now, it seems that this is directed at the subset of people (like the BP Community) who are truly ahead of the pitch and all eyes looking forward. This is very progressive stuff. 


  • SkeletorSkeletor The Conqueror Worm ✭✭✭


    i really agree with you on the snake oily marketing. As much as i have huge respect for Dave, brand names like "unfair advantage"  "choline force" are just ridiculous




     


    You guys think those product names are ridiculous? Just wait until he rolls out his new probiotic, Colon Puma.

    "I know how to despise mere cool intelligence. What I want is intelligence matched by pure, physical existence, like a statue." --Yukio Mishima

     

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  • What can you do about marketing you don't like? Send in your application as a marketing director, and/or don't purchase the products.




     


     


    Or I can give, and solicit others to give, helpful and constructive advice to the company. 


  • I didn't find your rant to be any of those words you just described,




    please make your own suggestions that are more helpful then my suggestions to: 1) use and quote from more research, 2) don't use stupid marketing phrases like "supercharge" and "brain octane" and 3) provide promised research on mycotoxins or revise claims accordingly.


    Please do make even more helpful suggestions that make my suggestions appear, by comparison, to be a mere rant.
  • mmejoannammejoanna ✭✭
    edited February 2015

    I didn't find the initial posting to be a rant, it looks to me like  zmark is trying to help out. drumminangoleiro's answer was pretty great - there is lots of peace to be had in taking that position... but, I'm tempted to throw in my 2 cents....


     


    Zmark seems like a supporter of Dave and the products, as I am. For a supporter of the products and Dave, boycotting the products isn't the logical step. An easier and more effective way to go, is just to write Dave and/or his team. Writing here in the forum is good, but, even better is direct communication, thru email, FB message, contact us, etc..


     


    BTW I have written to offer my services. I do marketing projects for 2 of the bigger brands you mentioned above, and my boss and closest colleague was World Brand Manger for the biggest of the brands you mentioned... but, my email went unanswered. Honestly, though... I only do one specific thing, and Bulletproof needs more. I think they need ongoing PR and marketing support. From my POV it looks like they plug in some talented, expert consulting now and again, but there is a lack of cohesion. 


  • I for one would like more research front and center.


     


    1. Coffee mycotoxin thing - No data out right now.  Zilch.  Hows' Dave's process different from any other brands?  Still hiding behind the 'proprietary super-secret' method that only he knows, that says of all the beans in existence, the upgraded beans are the only ones that are mycotoxin free....


     


    Mind you... I still buy these upgraded beans, but a little more data would be helpful.


     


    2. XCT / Brain Octane.


     


    I still don't see any thing out there describing how exactly XCT is 6x stronger than coconut oil and Brain Octane 18x stronger... How the eff is this calculated?


     


    More 'proprietary super secret' methods...


     


     


    A good thign about all this negative publicity that BP is getting is that, it means that the brand is really hitting the main stream.... which means that he's getting a lot more attention now.  Despite the negativity, I'd wager that there's a much larger positive effect for this brand given the greater audience he's reaching.


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  • dazdaz today is a good day ✭✭✭
    edited February 2015
    2. XCT / Brain Octane.

    I still don't see any thing out there describing how exactly XCT is 6x stronger than coconut oil and Brain Octane 18x stronger... How the eff is this calculated ?



    it's a bit of slight of hand really...it's just a 'maths thing'...how much C8 Caprylic acid is in each...get it.

    the statement is purely based on the c8, ignoring everything else.

    at least that's what I think...& Dave may have 'rounded' the numbers a tad (poetic license).


    (octane is 18x stronger than coconut/3x stronger than xct)

    fake it till you make it

  • AndreasAndreas ✭✭
    edited February 2015

    I concur with the desire for more and better science and less hype; essentially better information and less marketing.


    That may or may not make sense for a business.


    ___________________


     


    I'd also like to see evidence for the effectiveness of the liposome formulation in "Glutathione Force".  


    One would think that a liposome effectively encapsulating anything, would have no odor or taste outside of the liposome lipid coating.


    Liposomes as a delivery mechanism make great sense, but actually encasing things in liposomes effectively, may take more the the DIY community thinks.


    ___________________


     


    The Upgraded Self site makes an unsubstantiated claim for Glutathione Force (at least I haven't seen one):


     


    "Master Antioxidant - 8x Stronger Than Other Liposomal Glutathione!"


     


    How do they explain this?


    ___________________


     


    Also, it's "Supplement Facts" (see: states that it has 5 doses per oral dispenser?  That would indicate only 20 doses per package not 40.


    ___________________


     


    Also, the price of a product like this seems far out of line with other reputable liposomal products (even at 40 servings per package).


     


    LivOn's Lypo-Sphericâ„¢ GSH has 30 x 450 mg doses = 13,500 mg of L-Glutathion (reduced) @ $59.95.


     


    Upgraded has 40 x 100 mg doses = 4,000 mg of L-Glutathion (reduced) @ $59.00.


     


    13,500 mg vs 4,000 mg = over 3X more from LivOn.


     


    I've got no interest in LivOn other than their products appear well regarded and I've had success with them.


     


    I'll always pay a premium for substantiated effectiveness and I buy a lot Upgraded Self products to support what Dave and the enterprise does, but this starts to get silly.


  • I would really like to see red delicious apples evaluated to the 'Green' zone of the infographic.  Until then, I'm going to keep buying his supplements and feel sort of cheated about it.

  • bulletproof_alexbulletproof_alex Bulletproof Team Member


    I concur with the desire for more and better science and less hype; essentially better information and less marketing.


    That may or may not make sense for a business.


    ___________________


     


    I'd also like to see evidence for the effectiveness of the liposome formulation in "Glutathione Force".  


    One would think that a liposome effectively encapsulating anything, would have no odor or taste outside of the liposome lipid coating.


    Liposomes as a delivery mechanism make great sense, but actually encasing things in liposomes effectively, may take more the the DIY community thinks.


    ___________________


     


    The Upgraded Self site makes an unsubstantiated claim for Glutathione Force (at least I haven't seen one):


     


    "Master Antioxidant - 8x Stronger Than Other Liposomal Glutathione!"


     


    How do they explain this?


    ___________________


     


    Also, it's "Supplement Facts" (see: states that it has 5 doses per oral dispenser?  That would indicate only 20 doses per package not 40.


    ___________________


     


    Also, the price of a product like this seems far out of line with other reputable liposomal products (even at 40 servings per package).


     


    LivOn's Lypo-Sphericâ„¢ GSH has 30 x 450 mg doses = 13,500 mg of L-Glutathion (reduced) @ $59.95.


     


    Upgraded has 40 x 100 mg doses = 4,000 mg of L-Glutathion (reduced) @ $59.00.


     


    13,500 mg vs 4,000 mg = over 3X more from LivOn.


     


    I've got no interest in LivOn other than their products appear well regarded and I've had success with them.


     


    I'll always pay a premium for substantiated effectiveness and I buy a lot Upgraded Self products to support what Dave and the enterprise does, but this starts to get silly.


    ---


     




     

    From the product page: "In this patented delivery technology, glutathione binds to a peptide called lactoferrin. lactoferrin bypasses stomach degradation and delivers the glutathione straight to your gut. Lactoferrin also crosses your intestinal mucosa through a process called Cell Receptor Mediated Endocytosis (CRME) that allows lactoferrin to deliver iron to blood plasma."


    In short: Glutathione Force combines liposomal delivery with a lactoferrin molecule, the lactoferrin molecule giving it that extra boost. If you don't believe it, try Glutathione Force at a steady dose, then another brand at a steady dose, for a week each.

     

    Also, there are 10 doses per dispenser. An earlier form of Glutathione Force had more dispensers. Both have the same amount of doses. :)

    Marketing Communications Coordinator | Bulletproof

  • bulletproof_alexbulletproof_alex Bulletproof Team Member


    2. XCT / Brain Octane.

    I still don't see any thing out there describing how exactly XCT is 6x stronger than coconut oil and Brain Octane 18x stronger... How the eff is this calculated ?



    it's a bit of slight of hand really...it's just a 'maths thing'...how much C8 Caprylic acid is in each...get it.

    the statement is purely based on the c8, ignoring everything else.

    at least that's what I think...& Dave may have 'rounded' the numbers a tad (poetic license).


    (octane is 18x stronger than coconut/3x stronger than xct)




     


    It's based on the percentage of c-8 and c-10 found in regular coconut oil. 18 tablespoons of coconut oil will yield the same amount of c-8 as 1 tablespoon of Brain Octane. :)

    Marketing Communications Coordinator | Bulletproof

  • bulletproof_alexbulletproof_alex Bulletproof Team Member


    You guys think those product names are ridiculous? Just wait until he rolls out his new probiotic, Colon Puma.





    I think "Bulletproof Disaster Pants" has a nice ring to it.

    Marketing Communications Coordinator | Bulletproof

  • dazdaz today is a good day ✭✭✭
    edited February 2015

    It's based on the percentage of c-8 and c-10 found in regular coconut oil. 18 tablespoons of coconut oil will yield the same amount of c-8 as 1 tablespoon of Brain Octane. :)





    If that were is the case, then brain octane is only 5.88x stronger than the coconut oil I have in front of me, based on c8 & c10.

    but 12.5x stronger based on just the c8.


    (the coconut oil I have, has 8g c8 per 100g & 9g c10 per 100g)


     


    edit: it must be based on just the c8, which is why XCT is 6x stronger than coconut & Octane is 18x stronger than coconut & 3x stronger than XCT.


    These 'x strengths' are all based on the coconut oil having 5.55 grams of c8 per 100 grams (which is variable, as i say my coconut oil is labelled as having 8 grams c8 per 100 grams). 100/18=5.55 grams c8 per 100 grams of coconut oil. 


    I guess the XCT 6x could be based on just c8 or c8+c10 ie. 100/6=16.66 grams of c8+c10 per 100 grams of coconut oil. 


    fake it till you make it

  • bulletproof_alexbulletproof_alex Bulletproof Team Member
    To answer the original question posed by this thread. There are many ways to help Bulletproof's marketing team when articles like these get out there. The first thing is to realize that most of these articles are only written for clickbait headline traffic from social media (read "Trust Me, I'm Lying" by Ryan Holiday if you have any doubts about this), and don't actually offer any substantial arguments beyond:

     

    1. Bulletproof Coffee has calories

    2. Bulletproof Coffee has too much butter

    3. Bulletproof Coffee has too many MCTs

    4. et al.

     

    Bulletproof Coffee is gaining steam (pun?), and news outlets are picking up on it. Some of them are haters and it's expected. Not everyone is on board, and some of them write nasty things. The overwhelming amount of news coverage has been extremely positive, including Dave's biggest spots, which is awesome.

     

    The best thing to do with these articles is to comment on them to call out logical fallacies and poor reasoning. :)

    Marketing Communications Coordinator | Bulletproof

  • bulletproof_alexbulletproof_alex Bulletproof Team Member
    edited February 2015


    If that were is the case, then brain octane is only 5.88x stronger than the coconut oil I have in front of me, based on c8 & c10.

    but 12.5x stronger based on just the c8.


    tho I guess it could depend on what is meant by 'yield'...


    (the coconut oil I have, has 8g c8 per 100g & 9g c10 per 100g)




     


    It's an average. See coconut oil fatty acid ratios and ranges here: http://www.chempro.in/fattyacid.htm  Capryllic Acid can range from one-twentieth to one-tenth.


     


    Edit: It also depends on the coconut oil source.


    Marketing Communications Coordinator | Bulletproof

  • dazdaz today is a good day ✭✭✭


    It's an average. See coconut oil fatty acid ratios and ranges here: http://www.chempro.in/fattyacid.htm  Capryllic Acid can range from one-twentieth to one-tenth.


     


    Edit: It also depends on the coconut oil source.




     


    agreed. i edited my comment above to clarify that.

    fake it till you make it

  • AndreasAndreas ✭✭
    edited February 2015

     


    From the product page: "In this patented delivery technology, glutathione binds to a peptide called lactoferrin. lactoferrin bypasses stomach degradation and delivers the glutathione straight to your gut. Lactoferrin also crosses your intestinal mucosa through a process called Cell Receptor Mediated Endocytosis (CRME) that allows lactoferrin to deliver iron to blood plasma."



    In short: Glutathione Force combines liposomal delivery with a lactoferrin molecule, the lactoferrin molecule giving it that extra boost. If you don't believe it, try Glutathione Force at a steady dose, then another brand at a steady dose, for a week each.

     

    Also, there are 10 doses per dispenser. An earlier form of Glutathione Force had more dispensers. Both have the same amount of doses.


     


    @bulletproof_alex - Please supply evidence that this actually does what you represent.  


     


    Properly formulated and manufactured liposomes deliver their payloads with upwards of 90% cellular (inside the cells themselves) bioavailability.  How does a lactoferrin molecule added to the mix become 8X stronger?  This doesn't appear to add up.  Perhaps conventional liposomal glutathione only has a 10% cellular bioavailability, if so it would differ dramatically from other liposome wrapped supplements and medicines.  


     


    Such 8X claims, need to pass the BS  common sense test or they require credible explanations or an independent assessment.


     


    It may very well come in at 8X stronger (whatever that means) than home brewed attempts at liposomes (which typically don't produce actual, you know, liposomal encapsulations), but I hope Upgraded Self holds itself to a higher standard.


  • zmarkzmark
    edited February 2015

    exactly. The whole "Brain Octane is 18x more power" is such obvious nonsense. If it has a different percentage of c-8 vs c-10 then he should just say that right on the frickin label.  


     


    Market two products thusly: 


     


    1. MCT oil (X% c8, Y% c10) 


    2. Short-MCT oil (Z% c8, A% c10)  


     


    And then on the back of the label or the website explain caprilic and the other acids or whatever. 


     


    Or better yet, think of how Thorne would name and market the product, and then do that. Because as soon as someone makes a shorter chain MCT oil that doesn't use a stupid name on the label, that's what I'm buying.


     


    I'm sick of explaining to friends who see the bottle on the counter, and I have to explain, "No I didn't buy snake oil -- yes I know it says 'Brain Octane' and '18x more power' but really, it isn't snake oil"  [I think . . .]


  • dazdaz today is a good day ✭✭✭
    edited February 2015


    ...Because as soon as someone makes a shorter chain MCT oil that doesn't use a stupid name on the label, that's what I'm buying.




    ...not sure if this one meets your 'doesn't use a stupid name on the label' criteria;

    Mickey-T-label1-1024x488.jpg


    (MiCkey Tâ„¢ Eightâ„¢ Caprylic Acid MCT Oil)

    fake it till you make it



  • ...not sure if this one meets you 'doesn't use a stupid name on the label' criteria;


     


     


     (MiCkey Tâ„¢ Eightâ„¢ Caprylic Acid MCT Oil)




     


    that's a big improvement. and cheaper at amazon. And the details on the back of the label actually explain the main issues being the ketogenic effect.  thank you. 

  • SystemSystem mod
    edited February 2015


    I for one would like more research front and center.


     


    1. Coffee mycotoxin thing - No data out right now.  Zilch.  Hows' Dave's process different from any other brands?  Still hiding behind the 'proprietary super-secret' method that only he knows, that says of all the beans in existence, the upgraded beans are the only ones that are mycotoxin free....


     


    Mind you... I still buy these upgraded beans, but a little more data would be helpful.


     


    2. XCT / Brain Octane.


     


    I still don't see any thing out there describing how exactly XCT is 6x stronger than coconut oil and Brain Octane 18x stronger... How the eff is this calculated?


     


    More 'proprietary super secret' methods...


     


     


    A good thign about all this negative publicity that BP is getting is that, it means that the brand is really hitting the main stream.... which means that he's getting a lot more attention now.  Despite the negativity, I'd wager that there's a much larger positive effect for this brand given the greater audience he's reaching.




    While I don't know if Dave's coffee beans are the only mycotoxin coffee beans on the market, I do know with certainty that they are virtually mycotxin-free. I know this because my care package arrived today, inside which was, among other things, my order of upgraded coffee. Bulletproof coffee that is made with bulletproof beans doesn't make me go pee every 30 minutes; bulletproof coffee made with Trader Joe's beans does make go to the bathroom often, however. That's just something I noticed today.


  • edited March 2015

    :D  Bulletproof Alex reminds me of Mr. White from Reservoir Dogs...damage control expert.  :D ;) :)


    Seeing through the chaotic.
  • sparefilmssparefilms Post-human Construct ✭✭✭

    bltprf.jpg


     


     


    Stop that. Stop it. How many 'Share' links do you need? Do you really think that Bulletproof people are incapable of remembering how to share an article they like? This makes me immediately navigate away from your site, and I've been visiting it for years now. An email sign-up on your splash page is one thing, but this popped up while I was trying to read an article (that needed some major proofreading, by the way) from your most recent newsletter. I stopped reading and went to a different blog. I now know one hell of a lot about automotive assembly robots and nothing about what you were trying to say.


     


     


    Bulletproof and Upgraded Self should stand on its own merit, and if you feel the need to interrupt the reading of one of your own articles to remind people to share and like you, then you are either condescending to your readers or not confident in your product.


     


     


    (As a side note, you should link the main BulletproofExecutive site with your forum email list, so return users are not always prompted to sign up for your email. This hinders our ability to get to your content quickly. There are various layout/search tweeks needed on your blog, but these popups are the most glaring hinderances to productivity-minded users. If your blog is inconvenient to use and your audience is serious about productivity they WILL go elsewhere and you will be left with only dogmatic followers. The executives in the Fortune 100 corporation I am employed with won't even read company emails if they are cumbersome.)


  • edited April 2015

    I freakin love his product names, and I get a kick out of his snake-oily marketing. I just look at it for what it is. He's a smart ass and a brilliant marketer in my perspective. I don't think big websites would be talking about him at all if he didn't have some controversy surrounding him or his products. 


     


    He may be a smart ass, but he's pretty clear on his intentions. Some people might overlook his disclaimers like, "this is the exact conditions that I was under and this worked for me", or "IF you blahblahblah, then [claim]". He even uses words such as "might" or "may", so as not to make his claims an actual claim. It's the listener's responsibility if they want to take his experience and say "ooooh your scientific claims have no research behind it" when he clearly states that that thing works for him and here's a little bit of research that inspired him to try that thing or care about it. 


     


    Even with the mycotoxin thing, he's said over and over again that he's extremely sensitive to mold toxins but not everybody is. It's like, try it yourself and figure out what works for you, which he has said in his podcast on occasion. He's also a biohacker, and thus an experimenter. Therefore, he's basically experimenting with everything and saw an opportunity to make a ton of money spreading that to others and supporting his own experiments. If the consumer is clear on this, there's really no reason to complain or look down, rather just experiment with it yourself because it works for him, it might work for you too, or might not. Especially because he clearly spends all his time and money on his health, which most of us do not. So the average person might not notice a difference at all in some of his products lol. Which is probably why his BP coffee is his baby, cause most people can get down with it no matter how healthy/unhealthy they are.


     


    I guess my point being he's a character, a personality, and he does a damn good job with consistency in regards to his image and the stream of value he offers his listeners/customers. Which is brilliant. 


  • But some people prefer to buy products based on facts, research, evidence and efficacy -- not personality of the owner. 


     


    Or why not do both. Use whatever goofy names and claims you want, but also provide more research like Onnit. 


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