About funnyyoushouldask

I’ve always been intrigued by brands and the roles they play in our lives specifically and in society generally. I provide brands and organizations with strategic advice, processes and new ideas in order to make better business decisions with regards to this. I’m in commercial creativity, but am often refered to as a planner or strategist.

Along the way, I’ve had the pleasure of working with companies such as H&M, FedEx, Rusta, Dustin, Virgin Atlantic, Reebok, Adobe and many others. Types of projects include service design and branded utility, new brand development, social media strategies (often entailing organizational change management) and advertising. Even a bordello… I’ve built up a fairly broad set of skills and experiences by having collaborated or been a part of places like gyro.com, dga.se (formerly gyro stockholm), Medieinstitutet, doberman, Tre Kronor Creative/Tre Kronor Media, Hyper Island (Collaborator, Master Classes)

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Here are my most recent posts

design future nuggets technology video clip

Hardware becoming software – dimple

Is hardware becoming like software? What is that even? We often hear about hardware becoming more and more like software, meaning open source (-ish), hackable and customisable. Then, of course, focusing too much on hardware might be wrong. Either way.

This thing dimple is quite interesting as it lives somewhere in-between software and hardware and kind of transcends those boundaries. Keeping hardware intact, yet still customising it. By way of software. Hmmm. Something like that.

(if the annoying “support us now” box is in the middle of the screen, hover and click x. But do support.)

brand business case marketing video clip

Patagonia, are you asking us not to buy?

I recently bought a Patagonia jacket. Which made me think of this. Worn Wear. Not just the fact that they do in fact become stories and memories, but the reaction from a lot of people when Patagonia explicitly encourages people not to buy their clothes.

I can hear proponents of the concept of brand loyalists scream. Of sales people squirming in their chairs. But it all aligns beautifully with how brands grow, and how brands can resonate, if we think about it.

Aware Patagonia loyalists, because it’s quite likely one of the fairly few brands who actually have real loyalists. Those who go quite far to stick to Patagonia. But those people are few, and they’re most likely very environmentally conscious already.

Another thing is about the message here. It’s not so much about the message, even though it’s very clear, true, and firmly positions the brand as a true “do good brand” with a purpose beyond making quick bucks. But it’s also about how they make this public. It’s so real. There’s not an ounce of fake in here even coming from a brand. I wrote/commented a few lines on how brands publicise themselves creatively here.

And with this in mind, lets just remind ourselves that there’s always people out there, however environmentally conscious or unconscious they might be, in the market for a new jacket and pants. And those people can buy from a number of brands (except for the exceptionally small group of die hard loyalists), all of which would suit their needs. The question is about who do they come to think of first? Who resonates more?

A few of those people might take you up, reconsider, and get used clothes or maybe even repair what they have. That’s a win for Patagonia. But enough people will get something new.

So, as Byron Sharp and other myth-busting researchers have pointed out to us – go for penetration, because the potential buyers are everywhere. They’re not loyal, they’re just likely buyers, to a varying degree.

What Patagonia does isn’t risky, it’s doubly good (and they’re f***ing awesome).

soundcloud story

hipsters – an iteration of the dandy

The word hipster. eww. But I quite liked this investigation, in Monocle Urbanist, of the concept – if it at all exists. Knew of dandyism, but not the connection between the two. Also, love sound cloud.

In 1836 Thomas Carlyle wrote:

A Dandy is a clothes-wearing Man, a Man whose trade, office and existence consists in the wearing of Clothes. Every faculty of his soul, spirit, purse, and person is heroically consecrated to this one object, the wearing of Clothes wisely and well: so that the others dress to live, he lives to dress … And now, for all this perennial Martyrdom, and Poesy, and even Prophecy, what is it that the Dandy asks in return? Solely, we may say, that you would recognise his existence; would admit him to be a living object; or even failing this, a visual object, or thing that will reflect rays of light…[15]

– Wikipedia

design nuggets video clip what is around us

slight perspective shifts

I love this. Slight perspective shifts with dramatic manifestations. Little shift in, big shift out.

business future internet

Mt. Gox, official systems and a parallel CEO profile

There are some hilarious quotes and secions in this story in Wired, about Mt. Gox and its fall. Simply hilarious, even though there is a serious side to it.

The 28-year-old Karpeles was born in France, but after spending some time in Israel, he settled down in Japan. There he got married, posted cat videos and became a father. In 2011, he acquired the Mt. Gox exchange in from an American entrepreneur named Jed McCaleb.

But soon, McCaleb was getting wires for tens of thousands of dollars and, realizing he was in over his head, he sold the site to Karpeles, an avid programmer, foodie, and bitcoin enthusiast who called himself Magicaltux in online forums.

That’s exactly what I would do with a burgeoning financial empire, sell it to a cat-vid-poster.

No, but seriously. As with everything that has a future affect – before it comes, it comes in numerous versions. This (sort of thing) might do something with how we view the more traditional structures and systems. More positively. Or it might not. Regardless, It has shown that official systems aren’t nessesarily a rule.

design future internet technology ways of use

The internet of things – industrial internet

The incredibly smart people of BERG hacked a washer and proves a great deal of areas where connectivity help. I mean, the “find repair people” part alone is worth a lot. Some time, after 2 years of really not thinking about it. Postponing rinse takes care of the “shit, sorry I can’t because I’m doing the washing” problem. There are probably not many products that do not benefit from connectivity.

I talked aobut this and that (which is what interesets me most) with a very technically oriented ex-colleague who shared a conversation with interaction designers of a more visual background and nature, and how that hinders the thinking around connected products. “What’s a couch gonna say to me?”. Nada, but tracking the use of it provides input to material choices and manufacturing (something that today is a part of the manufacturing process, but pehaps could be combined and outsourced to “natural use situations”) as well as feedback to healthcare industries benefiting from understanding our couch-potato-behavior.

Cloudwash: the connected washing machine from BERG on Vimeo.

design digital internet technology ways of use

the reporter app – illuminating the unmeasurable

Anything that aims to do that, is interesting. The reporter app from Nicholas Fetron and Drew Breunig.

reporter app by Fetron and Drew

“Reporter can illuminate aspects of your life that might be otherwise unmeasurable.”

digital future internet media ways of use

instant-on is the killer TV feature

That’s the central problem plaguing both set top boxes like Roku and Apple TV and content services like Netflix and Amazon Instant Video. Instead of letting you lean back and soak up content, these new challengers require decisions–a careful cost-benefit analysis of thousands of different options. If the traditional TV experience is about letting viewers surf channels, today’s on-demand video is like giving them a speedboat and forcing them choose a destination before they can even get in the water.

From the article “To Grow, Netflix Must Learn From the Quietly Brilliant UI of Regular TVs”, in wired

Well hear hear. This is exactly what Is missing in the creating of the future of TV. From the services currently in the market to the reasoning that goes on in pitch material, and pitches, that I’ve been involved in with regards to positioning TV content providers of today, when developing for tomorrow.

Don’t just stare at new technology and heaps of content at your finger tips. Look at the tired people whose brains stop functioning as their ass lands softly in the couch. The key feature? Bzzz – TV is on and streaming. Streaming something. One more bzzz and there’s something new.

The instant on, under a second, is something “new” TV (content, and the delivery of it) doesn’t manage. This is also why personal, pre-loaded, schedules are important. Not just because you can create your own channels based on favorite content, but because something has to start streaming as you enter couch mode. Human behaviour, not just technology.

brand just a reflection storytelling strategy

Vänsterpartiet – nej, nej, nej oavsett vad

DNs ledare ringar in precis det jag upplever med Vänsterpartiet, de är ett hopplöst nejsägande parti. Dom spelar evigt “defence” och maler uteslutande på med sina nej, nej, nej. Man kan – och utifrån ett varumärkesperspekiv bör – utan att blanda in faktiska politiska budskap och visioner diskutera energin, framåtandan och “momentum” bakom partier. Vänstern är toktröga.

Vänsterpartiet vill förändra sin image som dogmatisk nejsägare. ”Vi måste lära oss att uttrycka oss på rätt sätt. V har tidigare varit mer nej än ja”…

– DN (Linda Snecker)

Erik Modig skriver på sin kommunikationsblogg på Dagens Media om, hur man vinner ett val. Jag tycker två kommentarer till artikeln sätter fingret på vad Vänstern än så länge missar.

Du har så fel….Sverige vilar på en socialdemokratisk grund, den som lyckas vinna essensen ur den vinner. M lyckades ett tag men nu tar S åter rodret. Ideologi är starkare än reklam, den har nämligen arbetats in under generation efter generation. På så sätt är vi olikt många andra länder.

Kommenterar Jonny

Jonny, du har förmodligen rätt. Jag tror dock inte jag har fel för det. För det första så handlar det om HUR man vinner ”essensen” och då tror jag ovanstående principer kan hjälpa. För det andra finns osäkra röstare som inte baserar sitt val på ideologi. Det är dessa kommunikationen kämpar om.

Replikerar Erik Modig

Precis, kampen om yngre väljare, till exempel, måste ta i beräkningen att ideologi – extremt starkt begrepp inom Vänsterpartiet – är ett fenomen som för en yngre väljargrupp kanske inte riktigt är vad det varit (förutom för de inbitna, och de är ju frälsta). Vi ser ju substitut till kyrka (varumärken till viss del), politiska ideologier (subkulturer, nära grupper), stark geografisk tillhörighet (webbens geografi) etc.

Vi ser starka trender inom individualisering, uppluckrade arbetsformer (friare, inte bara osäkra och nedriga som Vänstern påpekar), socialt engagemang, intresse för rättvisefrågor mm. Småföretagandet är starkt, intressebaserade konstellationer formas utan geografiska begränsningar, man har större möjlighet att påverka än någonsin tidigare. Allt detta gör mängder med unga individer för att det är meningsfullt och ger dem värde. Frågan är hur Vänstern appellerar till denna yngre, medvetna och företagssamma generation/grupp? Vänstern framstår mest som solidaritetspolis (inte fel i sig), och inte inspiratör (avgörande metod för positivt momentum). Det ena borde inte utesluta det andra. Vi får väl se om de tätare inpå valet faktiskt presenterar några konkreta, inspirerande och offensiva förslag för att uppnå vad de vill (målet bakom ideologin) eller om det är idel förbud, nej och begränsningar.

brand business internet marketing organizational strategy

connected intentions

“When you use Buycott to scan a product, it will look up the product, determine what brand it belongs to, and figure out what company owns that brand (and who owns that company, ad infinitum). It will then cross-check the product owners against the companies and brands included in the campaigns you’ve joined, in order to tell you if the scanned product conflicts with one of your campaign commitments.”

We want to do good, make the right decisions. Eat green, wear helmet, give to the needy. What we say and want to do doesn’t always (almost never?) equal what we actually do. Attitudes and intentions might be there (I said I’d start wearing a helmet, and really meant to, for about a year) but behaviour is held back by barriers often ridiculous in nature.

The Buycott app, covered here in Springwise, is an example of a phenomena where those barriers, standing between intentions and behaviour, are lowered. When intentions are enforced and supported effortlessly, things can get interesting. Users/consumers tend to forget, but if forgetting gets harder, there’s even more pressure on brands.

Brands need to think harder (and try harder) to operate in a world where active and intentional (strategic) brand building more frequently is done through operational actions, decisions, etc, and less so through intentional brand communication.

Doing bad stuff has always risked ending up in the news or search results, but it (generally) demands momentum, a high “shittiness level” and a collective outrage. We’re alerted (and reinforce) though common sentiment and mass behaviour in a connected society. Connected information like this, which helps our intentions by becoming connected intentions, doesn’t. It becomes as individual as the wine suggestion app in a bottle store.

That doesn’t mean groups and social pressure doesn’t exert power on brand choice/decisions, but an added – again comparably effortless – nudge and reminder is potentially big. In a way it’s what connected and quantified self is/will be for daily health decisions in general.