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creativity digital ideas internet technology video clip

advertising ideas seem hard to break free from

Two creatives moved on to become creative directors at another agency here in London. I liked them a lot, not just for interesting lunch companionship and constant laughter, but because they had a very firm opinion. Thankfully they’re wrong. Otherwise I wouldn’t write this post and get to share a great case movie. Actually I would because it’s brilliant.

How the f**k can f**king Twelpforce win a f***ing Titanium Lion?!?!
He takes another sip from his beer. A Doom Bar I believe.
It’s fucking ridiculous, it’s not an idea!

Following this was a long discussion about creativity. A discussion that sometimes sounded as if creativity was exclusive to the advertising business.

It’s not an idea!!

Wrong. It’s not an ad idea. And let me just say, I’m not sure I agree Twelpforce was worthy of a Titanium Lion either, but it did deserve to win. But that’s not really the point. The point is the danger of being so hung up on ad ideas. Still. Today. With all the new possibilities of solving challenges and client briefs. Anyways.

About great ideas (period); here’s one from Miami Ad School for UNICEF.

UNICEF – Donate a word from Katharina Schmitt on Vimeo.

Bloody brilliant.

Categories
business digital internet just a reflection technology ways of use

indexing my life and augmenting my memory – scary thought

-Android App Indexes Your Life & Augments Your Memory

That’s a headline in a Mashable post this morning. I think it sounds interesting and have a read. But I can’t help but think about how this would sound to someone not having gone through the evolution we’ve seen over the last 10 or so years. It would scare the shit out of someone in 1980. Not only a couple of seldom used words, but they will also mess with not only my life but my memory!

“We are helping people remember their lives,” Dexetra co-founder Binil Antony explains.

I wonder though. Isn’t living life three things really? Doing it now, remembering past-living and thinking a bit about possible future living? That’s how I see it. If you plan too much ahead or keep thinking about how good it was before, someone will tell you you have to live now, here and now or live in the moment. So an app that helps me remember life, you could argue, is taking away a part of life. Or actually, perhaps it is just augmenting it.

Categories
digital internet just a reflection social media technology ways of use

anonymous opinions and public revolutions

“The cost of failure is really high when you’re contributing as yourself,” said Poole. “To fail in an environment where you’re contributing with your real name is costly.”

– Chris Poole, 4chan

“REAL change comes from people putting their necks on the line. I couldn’t remember a time when an anonymous person really enacted change in, well, anything. It’s why I sign my name to everything, even stuff that could get me fired,”

– Robert Scoble

From ReadWriteWeb

Both arguments are true. And we’ve seen more than enough evidence to verify that so is the case. It’s not either/or. When given the option, people will chose that which fits. Sometimes speaking up in public is what we need. Sometimes we need to be anonymous. Away from internet, the anonymous would hold his/her breath. Online that’s not the case. That’s quite groundbreaking, is it not?

Sometimes an anonymous person can start a revolution. Other times, many anonymous discontent people might need one public person to ignite them all. Going from reluctantly quiet and anonymous, to supporting an explosion of support. Confidence in numbers.

Categories
design digital internet just a reflection social media technology what is around us

discovering stories that stayed put

Location really was the missing dimension of digitally mediated [personal] communication. The variable that made the question “where are you” or “where is that happening” redundant. Of course a call to a mobile phone still calls for it, but not too seldom my calls are triggered by a check-in I’ve seen.

Where someone was when you called them was never unknown before. You called someone and if they answered, they were home. Or at work, or wherever you called to. You sent someone a letter and if they received it, they obviously came home. An early question upon calling someone might, however, have been where have you been, and that question held much more interesting information than where they were at the time of the conversation. As that’s wherever you called them.

You can tweet and move. A tweet here and a tweet there. Another person tweets here and tweets there. With location meta data you can see tweets in your vicinity. Check-ins let you see where friends and others are at. Small messages floating around everywhere and often they have very little to do with the location other than the fact that you were there just then. Check-ins are just that.

But as soon as we gather for a venue at a place, a hash tag gives the place a twitter feed. The feed belongs to, or originates from, a place. The belongs to part is what I think is a lost aspect that holds some potentially interesting ways of discovering things from the past at that spot. It’s quite interesting if that feed, with a hash tag working as the shepherd, were to be connected to the spot for that venue. Continuously. Not just the initial check-in that serves as a “Hi, I’m here”, but the ongoing conversation. They tend to part ways as the participant’s communication, about whatever the venue is about, starts flowing.

I’d like to find locations with feeds attached to them, and discover stories told from that place. To find out that, for example, music lovers had a Bob Dylan night at [location] 2 months ago. Just from being at the place. And being able to find parts of their discussions. Perhaps I’ve found a music lover cafe.

But It’s like my colleague said: “Real time is nothing after real time”.

It’s true. Just after real time, it’s nothing.

Just recently there was a gathering about the digital world called SIME (funnily enough this was discussed: The age of information is dead and the era of storytelling just began. and I’m using it as an example of how we could be stumbling over stories. How appropriate.). Some of the discussion can be found at #sime10 (don’t know for how long), and physically it took place at Cinema Saga. If you check in today (29th Nov 2010) you’ll see it’s the Stockholm International Film Festival. You won’t, however, discover that SIME 2010 took place a week before. And you will most certainly not find that SIME 09 was held in the same spot a year earlier.

You’ll find recent check-ins, who’s checked in most, but nothing about what took place here. I think that would add something useful to a place. I mean Google is intangible discovery first while a check-in is a tangible, location based, discovery first. I think the two need to be more tightly connected in the later case.

The check-in is a “story” starting point and #sime10 the story unfolding from that place. I think it’s only right that it partly sticks to that place.

But I really enjoy coincidental discoveries of a third kind of whatever it is I’m writing about here. They make me smile. They are check-ins with comments to spots created while in a car queue or some other passing situation or event. There was a queue here, but not anymore. Another person was here, in the queue, but not anymore. That person, at that time, was pissed off and told us in a comment. He/she is not pissed off anymore (I should hope). Nothing is really there anymore. Yet the comment is always what feels most real and most present to me. That’s science fiction.

Categories
advertising digital internet just a reflection technology ways of use

the answer to online vs. offline is in

DSC00608

And the answer, believe it or not, is simply ‘line’.

Categories
brand case digital internet planning social media work

H&M – also for people who love horse riding

Facebook has provided a great new way for brands to connect with people. But why you should connect, with what goal in mind and how to do it can be tricky and the answers are different for for every brand.

When we got a brief from H&M, more specifically the sponsor part of H&M, we were asked to conceptualize, start and help get off the ground, a blog featuring two long time H&M sponsored riders; Malin Baryard and Peder Fredricson. A good brief with a sound thought behind it given the massive interest in horses and horse riding amongst, primarily, young girls and teenagers. Exactly where H&M start selling their clothes. Clothes these young women can afford. Now they wanted to connect with them better, not just around the events but all through the year.

To make a long story short, after a period of netnography (on some of the very few active and interesting communities that existed – the latter opinion later confirmed in interviews), observational studies during a long weekend at the Göteborg Horse Show coupled with a number of visits to horse riding schools, stables and plentiful interviews – it was pretty clear to me. People who love (think The-Beatles-crazy-fan-screaming type of love) the two riders are closer to 7 than 15, meaning blogs haven’t really entered their world yet. The 15+ year old horse riding fans on the other hand, aren’t that crazy about these two riders. Why? Because their interest covers so much more; the whole horse riding circus. When our riders aren’t doing very well, or when they’re not participating in a certain event, the horse riding circus doesn’t stop. So looking at this from a larger context and bigger meaning perspective, what we had to do was capture the interest of the older group interested in horse riding rather than two riders, but at the same time give them a prominent and important role. Grab a bigger piece quite simply.

Where we would do this was obvious, and it’s not a blog. We created the very descriptive facebook page We Love Horses, brought to fans by H&M and (at least for the time being) headed up by our two riders and their bigger team.

The trick is to start small but have an idea and a plan for how it can develop. But never as fixed as to not be able to deviate or change the plan based on community input. It’s about high and low. Simple everyday activities that asks for participation and comments, updates from the life of a professional rider, quizes, educational articles on horse riding techniques, injuries and nutrition etc. Stuff that provides real value to these people. In our case coming from some of the top experts in the industry working with our professional riders, including the much looked up to stable girls who handle the day-to-day caring for the horses. The girl everyone wants to be, in case they don’t make it onto the horse riding circus themselves. Those are the lows, meaning everyday things.

The highs require some more exiting ideas such as competitions, participatory content generation, live streaming from events where no media go, behind the scenes photos and live-tweeting from the riders and interactive games even.


A web show hosted by our sponsored riders covering the whole industry.


A flash based horse riding game created for the We Love Horses fans to compete against each other.

Brands on Facebook is not a campaign

Brands setting up a Facebook presence sounds really simple, it’s just a Facebook page and a bunch of stuff. That’s exactly the important point to be made; setting these things up from a technical perspective is easy. But when it comes to launching a social media initiative the harder part is the organizational implications. In this case, get our riders up to speed with twitter, posting pics, mobile camera interviews behind the scenes. And that goes for the whole team. Will they be up for it? Do they understand the long-term engagement? Social media, unless it’s a short lived campaign (which often is not a good idea), is about managing a program. It’s about having long-term content strategies and never ending ideas and activities. It’s not a campaign, it’s a program.

Update 2011 – An example of how We Love Horses is used as the primary platform for behind the scene material, live streaming from events often not covered by media, as well as the place for the most up-to-date news from major horse riding venues. Something that got some coverage in 2011 when H&M sponsored the Stockholm International Horse Show.