Have you been amused and delighted recently? Give it a minute. Still nothing? I’m surprised, given that everything from coffee machines to garden centres seems to make this brand promise. Just recently the phrase jumped out at me from a B2B marketing industry website in a whitepaper on the rise of content marketing. An odd place I thought, if you consider the phrase usually relates to entertainment – a performer could indeed amuse and delight me. At a stretch some restaurant menus can amuse and delight the palate of this hungry diner. But a document outlining serious proposals for improving the ROI on the content marketing strategy of our high street banks?

Brands are symbols of experiences and ‘amuse and delight’ sets the bar high. Now its usage* is rapidly becoming universal my expectations of pleasure are increasingly frustrated. Sometimes we want to be amused or entertained. Other times we need to be informed and challenged.

But what do you think?

*Its origin can (I think, correct me if I’m wrong) be traced back to Alexander Pope in 1782: “Representations of…artless innocence always amuse and delight.”