Thinking Arfully

A speech by Dr. Bob Deutsch of Brain Sells at the GPRS Conference, Porto Alegre, Brazil, April 2017.

“In order to successfully approach and address the speed and complexity of today’s world, famous singer-songwriters, musicians, film directors, actors, novelists, poets, choreographers and chefs were interviewed and observed to understand their mental outlook and assumptions about life, that give rise to new offerings. Preeminent among their cognitive abilities were metaphor-making and integrating paradoxes, all the time informed by their own self-story and felt sensuality. Although sometimes tasks are difficult, artists have fun doing what they do and fun feeds their vitality, so necessary for authentic, creative work.”

People, Not Consumers

A speech by Dr. Bob Deutsch at the Account Planners Group Conference in Miami, Florida, May 2005.

“Consumers is too small of a conceptual box from which to understand people. For example, the idea of consumers assumes linear causality, logic, attribute assessment and expected utility calculations. People don’t “attach” to products that way. People are emotion-based, non-linear, symbolic assessors and narrative makers.”

Donald Trump, Explained

Every time I think of Donald Trump a Peanuts cartoon pops into my mind. It has Lucy holding a football for a field goal kick from Charlie Brown. Just as Charlie goes to put toe to pigskin, Lucy pulls the ball away and good ol’ Chuck goes flying off his feet. Lucy then walks off … Read more

Are the Two Titles, President and CEO, Compatible?

Donald Trump trumpets himself as a great businessman. There are parts of the public that assume his self-declared business acumen can naturally translate to his success as president. Not so fast: Our nation’s purpose and methods of operation are not the same as a business. The two entities exist in completely different contexts. A democracy … Read more

Post-Election Reflections on Humans as Humans

Forget Occupying Wall Street. Now it’s Displacing the Establishment. For those who were against Donald Trump, venting one’s anger in protest is a true expression of American democracy. There are no tanks in our streets. But venting is not enough. We — all of us — need to understand why Trump, as president-elect, happened. Then we can move forward, … Read more

Interview with Unplanned, the Brazilian online magazine

Interview with Unplanned, the Brazilian online magazine

Internationally-known cognitive anthropologist Dr. Bob Deutsch, Founder & President, Brain Sells, was interviewed by UNPLANNED, a Brazilian online magazine devoted to the intersection of business and creativity.  In the piece “Some Thoughts on Strategy and Planning.” Bob talks about how his career evolved, what makes great advertising, and what we can learn from Bruce Springsteen. Read a translation … Read more

The Primary Prerequisite for a Creative Mind, CICLOPE Festival 2015


Dr. Bob spoke at the CICLOPE International Festival of Craft 2015 in Berlin, Germany.   Dr. Bob Deutsch holds doctorates in Cognitive Neuroscience and in Cultural Anthropology. But he is no academic, ivory tower type. His specialty is knowing how leading ideas take hold in a culture and understanding the process by which people “attach” to products, situations, other people, and other types of entities. At CICLOPE Festival 2015, he explained -in one of the most engaging talks of the program- what is the primary necessary capacity for producing creativity that captures large audiences. Enjoy it!  For more on the festival, visit

Mars, The Martian and U.S.

This article originally appeared in Bob Deutsch’s column on the Huffington Post. It was only a little more than a decade ago that Mars passed close to Earth, just a stones throw, relatively speaking. Many people looked up. Many more people said, “so what?” Just as Brian De Palma’s 2000 film, Mission to Mars, had … Read more