n Wells Fargo Ad Disses Artists, Promotes Dysfunctional Ideas About Money | The Anti-Marketing Manifesto

Wells Fargo recently did an ad campaign that pissed off quite a few artists.

“A ballerina yesterday. An engineer today,” one ad reads.

“An actor yesterday. A botanist today,” says another.

Both ads are followed by the tagline: “Let’s get them ready for tomorrow.” They feature teens smiling while looking at scientific instruments. (Never mind that the teens are paid actors/models for the ads.)


Hold up, wait a minute…HUH?!

In just a few sentences, Wells Fargo managed to perpetuate and promote all of kinds of dysfunctional ideas, such as:

  • The idea that being a dancer (i.e., a ballerina) is something children need to grow out of.
  • The idea that being an actor (or any artist) is not a “real” career.
  • The idea that “Science is better than art.”
  • The idea that “You can’t make a lot of money as an artist.”
  • The idea that children should abandon what they love in order to be something else in life
  • The idea that success requires giving up your real dream or passion.

In society at large, it’s perfectly acceptable, and even desirable, to trade one’s real dreams away for something else. But pluck the average Joe or Jane out of the population, and chances are they’ll be complaining about their lives because they chose to follow “the norm” instead of figuring out how to make their passion work. Somewhere along the way, they “gave up”…and settled for what seemed more doable.

The majority of conventional marketing and advertising is just like these Wells Fargo ads…secretly (or openly) communicating false, dysfunctional messages that encourage people to give up on who they truly are for the sake of money.

This is why 99% of people are stuck in jobs they hate — somewhere along the way, somebody encouraged them to be something they’re not. And they bought into the lie.

That’s why I’m an “Anti-Marketer.” I hate that shit. I hate anything that spreads lies and ignorance, especially while profiting off the millions who buy into it.

Anti-Marketing is about helping people be MORE of who they really are! Not less!

Anti-Marketing is about helping people create better, healthier, more fulfilling lives of their choosing, by giving them the awareness and products that would enable them to do so.

Suggesting that science is better than art is like saying “Masculine is better than feminine”…or “Feminine is better than masculine.”

Sorry, but you need BOTH masculine and feminine to create anything. That’s the Law of Gender.

We need BOTH the rational, analytic mind (science) AND the intuitive, creative mind (ART). One without the other doesn’t work and isn’t sustainable.

Personally, I’m more of an arts person. Although I was good at math and science in school, I hated them and preferred to direct my efforts towards shaping beautiful, clear language and intriguing music. (I was an English/Creative Writing major!)

However, I was also NOT interested in succumbing to the typical “Starving Artist Syndrome” that is pervasive among so many artistic people. Such artists simply haven’t yet learned how to use a little bit of science in their favor.

Through years of trial and error, I figured out how to turn my “art” (writing) into a “science” (Anti-Marketing) that generates profits for myself and my clients. The reason it works so well is because art and science are blended together in a functional whole.

Anyone has the capacity to do this, no matter what an ad says…or what a school counselor tells them, or even what a misguided parent might tell them.

If someone takes the time to learn what they need to learn, they can succeed. (For me, that meant reading the book, The Science of Getting Rich by Wallace Wattles, over and over again, until it was ingrained my thinking. I still read it and refer to it constantly.)

Wells Fargo has since “apologized” for their ads…but that sounds like canned PR to me.

If the purpose of a bank is to help people meet their financial goals so that they can live out their dreams, then said bank shouldn’t be shitting on people’s dreams.

If I had written the ad, I would have done something like:

“A ballerina yesterday.
A rich ballerina today.”

…Followed by giving people FREE educational content that helps them realize their dreams AND make a great living doing it. (Can you imagine banks handing out free copies of The Science of Getting Rich to all new members? Hell, sign me for that kind of bank!)

Traditional marketing is all about hypnotizing people into believing they’re limited, and that they have to follow the crowd.

Anti-Marketing says “F&%k all that… Do your own thing, help and serve others in your own unique way, and make a shit ton of money doing it.”

About the Author

Michelle Lopez Boggs is a copywriter, editor, and author of The Anti-Marketing Manifesto: How to Sell Without Being a Sellout. She writes for 8-figure brands and teaches her clients follow the MEI(S) principle: motivate, educate, inspire, and sell. To download a FREE copy of her book, click here.

Confused About How to Increase Conversions?

Download my FREE cheat sheet, “5 Tips for Increasing Conversions on Natural, Organic, Non-Toxic Products”