sly : marketing

My 8 year old daughter has a dragon tattoo

I can’t believe what I am currently looking at. I am using contact lenses, and all I can think about is that they’re playing a trick on me. It looks like my eight year old daughter has a large dragon tattooed on her belly. I know that it’s a fake, but it looks like the real thing. All I can think is, oh no – she’s growing up way too fast. And what’s going on in the world when eight year old girls are getting tattooes?

On the other hand. She looks amazing. The dragon is bright red and yellow. It looks like it has come to life and that it’s ready to fly away, and spit flames at me. I can’t decide, it’s like I’m hypnotized, and I’m under the spell of the dragon.

Fake tattoos are awesome

Looking at my daughter and her dragon tattoo makes me think about one really important aspect of marketing, one that a lot of people never think about. I’ve read a brilliant post (and watched the awesome video as well) where Ryan Critchett talks about one part of it; how playfulness in social media helps sell products.

As my daughter is walking up the stairs towards her room, I’m thinking that this fake tattoo thing is a great idea from the tattoo business. My daughter loves tattoos already, and if they continue to develop and sell her the fake stuff, one day she’ll be old enough to decide to buy one for herself. I’m not saying that there are tattoo businesses involved in creating and selling fake tattoos, but it would be a brilliant idea if it was.

Make people play and start preselling your products

I love to play and I love contests. I still remember back in the days when I almost never slept, and just kept playing Civilization all day and night. It’s a long time ago, in what seems to be a completely different world. I didn’t have kids, I could do whatever I wanted all day long – well, almost.

The fake tattoos made me realize the power of preselling, and how we should be combining our products with playfulness. I believe that in a way, we are all interested in playing. We just don’t have the time to stop and think about it. We’re living in a busy world. And we’re too busy to realize that we’re busy.

The piano stairs

Make it your goal to get people to start playing. Ah, that reminds me of the piano stairs. Look at how people like to play, it even makes people want to take the stairs instead of the escalators.

It’s about playing and having fun.

The world’s deepest bin

We need to be creative to make grownups like you and me play. But it’s not that difficult really.

The iPhone app that helps me from going insane

I read a recommendation for iRewardChart at Wonder of Tech, and I thought that this is an iPhone app I just have to try. I’m not going to go into details about all the problems I was having with my kids. They’re 8 and 5 years old, so there are problems all the time. After making everything, the daily routines, into a contest and a game, life is so much more interesting and fun.

I give the kids stars when they behave and do something according to the rules. I’m the judge and I set the rules. For instance, I give them each a star if they go to bed on time. And I can give them red stars if they are not behaving. When they have enough stars, they can use the stars to “buy” something. For instance, if my daughter has 20 stars, she can exchange them into a bowling night. Which is awesome by the way.

Turn your brand into something fun and exciting

Say it out loud, what can I do to make people play with my brand? It’s so much easier when you say it out loud. I bet you can think of something. Even my dentist makes me excited (I’m not sure if it was his intention).

For instance, you can give random points of kindness to your customers, and let them exchange the points into products. A woman enters your store, and she is just plain awesome and funny, give her a point, and tell her about it. She’ll tell her friends. They’ll tell their friends and so on. There are no rules, just plain excitement. Give points to people who excites you.

If people keep thinking about our brands without ever having bought any of our products, well, then we’re onto something interesting.

Image by ddmatt31

48 responses to “My 8 year old daughter has a dragon tattoo”

  1. Adrienne says:

    Glad to hear that your daughter’s tattoo is fake but I have a feeling if she keeps this up, when she turns of age she’ll be getting a real one. My nephew has two but they are small and on his ankles. Still, I don’t want anything like that permanently on my body.

    That’s a great idea Jens, giving your readers points and then rewards. Will have to think how I can implement that over at my blog. You’ve got me to thinking about some things now.

    I’ve seen the piano video but not the trash. I can see why more people would want to throw things away if they heard that unexpectedly. How fun!

    • Brankica says:

      And I have 11 tattoos… for now… 🙂

      Jens, the star system for your kids is the best thing I ever heard!

      • Carolyn says:

        I agree, Brankica. I’ve blogged about iRewardChart three times so far. The Best App ever. I’m so glad Jens has discovered it too. 😀

      • Jens says:

        11 tattoos? That’s awesome Brankica. Do you have any large ones, and are most of them about guns? 😉

        I’m going to write a review about iRewardChart sometime soon. It’s the best iPhone app for parents… it’s all because of the stars.

        I’ll stop by your blog as soon as I wake up in the morning. I’ve been traveling all day 🙂

        • Arjun Rai says:

          fake tatto is really good as comparison to permanent, many of my friends wants to remove their permanent tattoo but its better to use temporary tattoo so that you can remove them when you want.

      • Adrienne says:

        Wow Brankica, you have 11 tattoos? At what age did you start if I might ask? I’m petrified of needles digging into my skin leaving dye behind. That just freaks me out girl!

    • Carolyn says:

      Adrienne, I think readers of your blog come away with something better than points. They come away with knowledge (you explain tech very well with your videos!) and a sense of job. I think you already incorporate what Jens is discussing here. Your blog is fun! 🙂

      • Adrienne says:

        Ah thanks for saying that Carolyn. So you think it’s just fine the way it is and I don’t need to reward them for just showing up each week and checking out my posts? I’m honored I get so many comments now but it seems like I should be doing more! So glad you think my place is fun.

      • Carolyn says:

        Sense of job? I meant sense of community. World’s worst typo!!! Sorry about that. I shouldn’t comment past my bedtime. 😉

    • Jens says:

      Hey Adrienne,

      I’m back from my vacation, and I just want to thank you so much for keep coming to my blog even though I have been away for so long. Thank You!!! About the tattoos. My daughter and now also my son is covered with tattoos. They bought several new ones while in Rome 🙂

      I’m not sure if I hope that they’ll get some when they get old enough, or if they will only see tattoos as a thing of the past. Anyway, they love to play with it and because they play with it they get a very good relationship to tattoos.

      Your blog is awesome, so like Carolyn is saying, you shouldn’t change a thing 🙂

      I’ll stop by your blog as soon as I get some sleep.

  2. Bill Dorman says:

    That was cool Jens; I’m all about fun. I loved the videos.

    Are you back yet? How many vacations do you get in a year? I want to be Jens when I grow up…………just sayin’………….

    Thanks for sharing this, I enjoyed it.

    • Carolyn says:

      Bill, Move to Europe. They have their priorities straight there!

    • Jens says:

      Hey Bill,

      I’m back. I just got home. I started my computer before closing the door. I have been two weeks offline. I’ve only been online with my Kindle. And that was a weird feeling. I thought I would be online all the time in Italy, so I brought my Macbook… but I couldn’t find a single coffee shop or a library or anything. Well, I was only in Rome for one day. And I bet I could have found several pizzerias with free WiFi.

      In Norway everybody gets 5 weeks of vacation every year. But, since I’m not like most people, I have a lot more than that 🙂

      I’ll stop by your blog as soon as I get some sleep. Thanks a lot for your comments and support while I’ve been away.

  3. Carolyn says:

    Hi Jens, thanks for the shoutout! Great videos. I loved the one about the trash can (bin). The first people who see it communicate in sign language, but they still appreciated the fun of it.

    I love your example of iRewardChart too. I personally know it’s the Best App Ever, but it’s wonderful to read others are appreciating it as well. The app makes chores fun for kids. So was the tattoo the reward for your daughter?

    I also think you have done a great job making the university seem fun in your marketing video, though you do balance the fun with serious shots as well.

    Thanks for sharing this awesome fun theory with us, Jens! 🙂

    • iRewardChart says:

      Thank you Jens and Carolyn! You guys rock!

      I love the concept of making brands fun. Yay, Facebook very much enables these kinda stuff these days. I did try to post something wacky once in a while just to bring a chuckle in reader’s face… but lately I haven’t.
      Interesting point is: on social media, every person tries to be a brand, and every brand tries to be a person/human!

      • Jens says:


        Your app rocks! I’ve tested Facebook for the university and it works great, but on a personal level, I haven’t been doing that much testing.

        You bring up a very interesting point when it comes to social media. I’ve always been sort of thinking about if we should add our real names to social media or not (or just the brand). So far, I don’t have any answers. What’s important is how we connect and create relationships.

        I’ll be writing a detailed review of your app sometimes soon. I’ll let you know as soon as I’m ready 🙂


        • iRewardChart says:

          Well, since you are the marketing expert, social media or otherwise, may be you should do a post on the humanization of the brands. Very interesting topic in the wake of social media. Now we are closer to the brands we love in a very personal level (the other day someone mentioned, she picked a yogurt at store, which said, follow me on Facebook/Twitter – really? Follow a yogurt??)

          Hope you had a great Italy trip!

    • Jens says:

      Hi Carolyn,

      I’m finally awake after a day of traveling. I’m going to write a more detailed review of iRewardChart as well (I think it’s the best app I’ve tried), I just need to start planning what I’m going to be doing from now on. I’ve just been on vacation, and I have’t done anything when it comes to writing or marketing (well, almost).

      I’m also going to write a detailed marketing version of my trip to Italy 🙂

      It’s all about having fun and playing, even when we grow up.

      Thanks again for all your support.


      • Carolyn says:

        Hi Jens, I love your “coming attractions”. I agree with you about iRewardChart. I believe people are more motivated by inspiration for rewards than by fear of reprisal. This app helps me to be a better parent because I can effectively inspire my children instead of nagging them. The more people who know about this app, the better place this world will be. I’m so glad you will be spreading the word about this awesome app.

        I also can’t wait to hear about your Italian pizza extravaganza! I hope you will share pictures of the castle that houses your favorite pizza restaurant. 🙂

  4. sanjay says:

    Jens is on vacation again? I would love to be Jens 😀 Notice that you’ve got a new theme, pretty cool!

    • Jens says:

      Hi Sanjay,

      Yes, I have been two weeks in Italy, and I’ve been eating pizza every single day for two weeks. So you won’t be seeing a picture of me anytime soon 🙂

      I just installed Woo Themes before I left home (actually the day before). It’s great that you like it.

      I’m going to be staying at home for a while now. I’ve got to get some work done. I couldn’t get access to Internet anywhere in Italy (I was in Rome only for one day).


  5. Eddie Gear says:

    Jens, I have a cousin in Australia who loves face paintings. I guess its like a craze with kinds these days to get tattoos and their face painted. its okay as they are not permanent and the best past is that they are happy. I do use and like the iRewardChart app a lot. Carolin has done a wonderful review of the app as well.

    I loved the videos you have on this post. Now that is what I call a rock solid CALL TO ACTION.

    • Jens says:

      Hey Eddie,

      Wow, face paintings. That sounds kind of scary to me, hopefully it’s not a dragon on her face 🙂 I’m glad that my kids are not as fascinated by that as they are with tattoos at the moment. Although, it might be really cool. I haven’t seen a face painting.

      I love the videos too. I have been thinking about how to apply “the fun theory” and their call to action into other parts of life.

      Thanks a lot for your comments while I’ve been away.


    • Carolyn says:

      Thanks, Eddie, I’m glad you enjoyed my review of the app.

      I saw 4 kids today at the farmer’s market with faces painted like monsters. Very cute!

  6. JonGabel says:

    Wouldn’t it be exciting to try out on “the theory of fun”. It seemed like a nice way to invite people to be connected. This is the best way that should be done to improve our sorroundings and new ideas like this will be by far a great diversion.

    • Jens says:

      Hi Jon,

      Yes, it would be a lot of fun to try out “the fun theory”. I have been thinking a lot about it, but it’s hard to come up with something as creative 🙂


  7. Jens says:


    Thanks a lot for your feedback 🙂


  8. Jayne Kopp says:

    Hi Jens, I don’t believe we have met, but I saw you over at Adriennes place!

    I loved the post and the video’s and to be honest it really got my creative juices flowing!

    Also, I would like to commend you on the “Star” reward system. I have the same one!! 🙂 Great minds do think alike. My children are 7 & 8 so I am in a similar situation.

    I loved the video’s. I will have to learn to loosen up and throw in a bit of fun… can’t wait to see what this crazy mind of mine dreams up!

    Lovely to meet you. What a great post. Good research on the vids.


    • Jens says:

      Hi Jayne,

      I’m really glad that you decided to stop by and that I can help get your creative juices flowing 🙂

      You’re also using iRewardChart, that’s awesome. Not many people in Norway knows about this, at least not the people I’ve been talking to. So, that’s why I decided to write a review about it. People really should buy this fantastic app.

      Thanks a lot for your kind words.


    • iRewardChart says:

      Thank you Jayne, its great to hear its helping families as far as Norway. Its a blessing, that we live in a time where an innovative company like Apple has created a platform. We as a very small team of developer, designer have made a difference in someone’s household in a place as far as Norway, or any other place around globe for that matter. Such a rock-solid design, development, and distribution platform wasn’t around 10yrs back.
      We truly feel all our hard work is paid when we hear such resounding testimonials.

      Thanks Jens and Carolyn for your amazing support.

  9. Serenity Walker says:

    Honestly, I don’t like tattoes, it is just a dirt in the body (that’s only for me). I will not allow my daughter to have a tatto even if it is fake, well anyway, tattoes are great. Thanks for sharing this one!

    • Jens says:

      Hey Serenity,

      I know a lot of people who hate tattoos. I’m actually not sure that I think of them, but I know this much, I can’t stop the fake tattoos on my daughter. Her will is too strong 🙂


  10. I love how kids play with adult things – it’s scary but fascinating – it gives a great insight into consumer behaviour.

    Why not try out new things? What’s the worst thing that can happen? I’m all for it!

    • Jens says:

      Me too. Although, looking at how 8 year old girls are experimenting to dress like adults. That’s scary.

      My daughter doesn’t have the dragon tattoo any more, she’s replaced it with twenty other tattoos 🙂

  11. Nitin Agrawal says:

    Jenes.. its due to generation gap, now children love to act as an adult,,
    They dressed up like adults and of course have tattoos,, I must say your daughter feels pleasure in having those tattoos,, but you know what still I don’t like any kind of tattoo on my body

  12. Warren says:

    That’s awesome. I remember when I was younger I would use stickers and pretend they were tattoos. Now they have large lifelike (and amazingly realistic) ones kids and teenagers can use.

    Hopefully she doesn’t start saving up for the day she turns 16 and can make it real! LOL

    Although you hear people say “do you have any idea what thats going to look like when you’re 80?”

    Problem with that statement is most of the other 80 year olds will be just as decorated by that time! 🙂

    Take care my Norwegian friend! Enjoy the day!

  13. Facebook Landing Page says:

    I think sticker Tattoo works best 🙂

  14. Bruker says:

    I wish i could also use that stairs. that was really amazing, thanks for sharing this post with us it was really awesome

  15. David says:

    I love tattoo from childhood and i dint got a chance to have it , but now i have 3 tattoos ….

  16. That’s an interesting point about getting people toplay with your brand. Not sure how the points would work in our business (holiday cottages for romantic getaways in Montville, Australia) but you’ve got me thinking. Thanks for the inspiration.

  17. mykebob says:

    Fake tattoos are in trend nowadays and it is looking awesome tattoo and design with a fantastic way. Its an appreciable post about the love of the tattoos in people.

  18. Shara Lee says:

    It almost took me forever to move on from the videos you have in here. That’s creativity at its extreme. I was really amazed by the stair and trash bin were marketed. Really awesome.
    In regards to fake tattoo, I agree that they are fun. You’ll never have to worry about laser tattoo removal and other treatments.

  19. Nikky says:

    Good to see that your daughter has got you thinking about social with her tattoo design. Its also amazing how you connected the dots of tattoo design to Social media 🙂

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