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Saturday, March 10, 2007

Dear Pulse 8

Dear Pulse 8,
I had such high hopes for your debut this year; your launch was great except for the fog machine which was a nightmare for photographers. Your mas camp was well laid out with a pleasant ambience and aesthetically pleasing to a potential customer. For the short time I visited customer service was pleasant and informative, thanks for my bottle of Johnny Walker which I won at your launch!

As for the costumes, some were very generic; a few were nice but none really outstanding and the prices were too high for a new band competing against the big two of TRIBE and Island People who have the advantage of branding and reputation to garner the support of masqueraders in spite of costume costs. I understand that Pulse 8 was borne out of Poison; however for 2008 it would be wise if you divorced yourself completely from the Poison name and style of costumes. See, the Poison/Pulse 8 connection is much like the Pelican versus Trotters saga.

Before there was anything else to compare, Pelican was THE hot spot for the young, trendy and hip crowd willing to pay the higher prices for their spirits at their Friday evening lime. Pelican back in the day was really nothing more than a feeble attempt at an English Pub, cramped for space and offering very basic in amenities, but the people made the lime great! Fast forward a couple years and the advent of the Zoo (now Crobar) which opened people’s eyes to a different lime; same crowd but upgraded surroundings made it the new place to be, taking away many of Pelican's customers except for a few die hard faithful fans. After the Zoo closed in a short space of time (owing to the complaints from residents in the area) the crowd was somewhat hesitant to return to Pelican, having tasted something better than what they were used to! Thus the lime moved to Trotters, which offered beer at the same prices with a much more amenities; air conditioned venue, pleasant d├ęcor, more space, super bathrooms, wider selection of drinks and lots to get the drift. All which led to the eventual demise of Pelican.

The parallel I am trying to make is that Poison used to be the hot band until TRIBE showed masqueraders the ultimate all-inclusive experience and Island People wowed everyone with their costumes. After enjoying either one of those two bands it is hard for masqueraders to think of returning to Poison in any form, shape or re-invention when Poison brings back memories of too many sections, the longest wait ever to cross the stage, costumes falling apart on the road, shoddy service from section leaders, not collecting costumes on time and drinks running out on the road! The tag line of "we have more fun" did not turn out to be true, seems TRIBE and Island People were having even MUCH more fun. Thus distancing yourself from Poison and marketing the band differently can only help you for 2008.

My suggestion would be to tackle the market that is looking for Island People’s costumes and TRIBE’s customer service at a cheaper price. From all indications your on road experience was good. The only negative report was that a whole section was scrapped and masqueraders were placed in another. Hopefully you offered those masqueraders their choice of another section or their money back! My belief is if you offer that seemingly elusive combination of pretty costumes and pretty good service you will excel in 2008, doubling your number of masqueraders. Scrap the old "Poison" formula and whip up some unique, sexy and creative costumes at a reasonable price.

Finally, think of a new name, new image, new logo and no mention at all of having any ties to Poison and forge your own identity for 2008!

Wishing you the best in the future,


Seen on the road......

First thing first, the lovely lady pictured below looked awesome in her Imp costume which she was completely decked off in on Monday .When I saw her fully costumed on Monday chipping through the streets I had to take a second look as no one else I had seen thus far wore their entire costume. But what made me almost get whiplash from the third, fourth and fifth look was the fact that on her feet this super woman was wearing gold, platform "stripper" stilettos!!!!!!!

Click on the photo for a larger view

How she made out navigating the pot holes of Port of Spain, not to mention the long route on Monday is a mystery to me! Trust me, she was not wearing the heels "only to cross the stage" she wore them all day as far as I could tell as I saw her several times on the road. I cannot recall seeing this same masquerader on Tuesday so I am not too sure if she wore the heels the next day, but if anyone knows how her feet and toes survived after Monday please let me know. There were many, many,many ladies wearing heels with their costume on both Monday and Tuesday but these took the cake!
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