I've finally experienced Prezi... the presentation program that provides a very sexy alternative to Powerpoint's locked and linear progression through slides. With Prezi, you get a workspace to place your slides, text, images, movies, etc. Then you can zoom in and out of this workspace (and/or define a "path" through it) so your presentation becomes infinitely more interesting via motion, close-ups, panning across the workspace, zooming out to see the collective content. I just visited two of our clients this week and used Prezi (having imported my slides). With very little practice, I was whizzing around the content and zooming in and out of various sections depending on our conversation. It was awesome and wonderfully liberating. To me, Prezi works more like my mind... I've got ideas in different parts of my mental "workspace" and I tend to zip in and around various sections as needed. Big kudos to Prezi for creating this innovative tool! (Toph at Egg)
Earlier this week, a research team from Warwick and Sheffield universities in England claimed to have finally answered a question that has stumped philosophers for centuries, "What came first, the chicken or the egg?" More here.
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How we will refer to the causality dilemma moving forward is clearly up for debate.
We have a lot of runners at Egg. A couple of us have experimented with the "freerunning" movement. In short, minimalist footwear to produce close-to-natural footstrike. While still within the minority, this freerunning movement is gaining traction (sorry, had to do it) and is proving to be a cost-of-entry innovation for most mainstream footwear companies. New Balance, Adidas and Nike have joined the race (there we go again).
These races against similar products inevitably produce a battle of differentiation (messaging, colorways, sponsors). Ultimately, the winner will harness an element of distinction its competition can't match. I'll propose Nike's getting there with the below video. Always attentive to its ownership of the convergence between athletics and pop culture, Nike produced a video with the help of a couple Japanese DJ's (not going to pretend I have the street cred to elaborate) that while absurd, highlighted the core attribute of its Nike Free shoe (next-to-natural flexibility) in a way that resonates with runners and peaks the interest of those profitable fashion-forward sneakerfreaks.
This is a challenge to rethink the way we communicate our most important attributes. Re-imagine how our targets experience the benefits we shout from the rooftops. Turn a simple function into art and in one down-beat, beat down the competition.
For many of the world's men, the airtight equation for camaraderie consists of one or both of these addends: beer and sport. The summation quite often includes both in the case of a big game. THE big game. Such as the UEFA Champions League game between AC Milan and Real Madrid football teams.
In a brilliant activation strategy, Heineken Italy proposes that the "most sacred time men have left" is at risk, then devised a stunt to call out the increasing influence external factors have in pulling a fan away from his set (and his buddies, and, well, a profitable beer occasion). More narration will only act as a spoiler, so spend a few minutes with this excellent case study to see how, ultimately, Heineken went viral, celebrated the sanctity of male bonding and created authentic engagement with its brand.
Cheers to the weekend.
I thought this week’s Brand Camp cartoon was pretty spot-on and thought provoking. It talks about how excited we are about social media as marketers, and yet how little respect we give it as permanent and public representation of our brand. In many ways the rules and tonality with social media are much more complex than those of more traditional outlets, and should probably be managed as carefully as we fuss over the typeface in our advertising copy.
Ok this is really cool.
I always thought Dyson would be one of those one-hit-wonder kind of guys who had a great revolutionary idea that changed a category that no one had thought about in a long time. I figured he would have this splash and retreat to count his millions on the tropical island of his choice. But he has done it again folks, this time re-inventing the humble fan.
So for the twist on this one…no blades…sublime. He now goes on the list of people I want to have a drink with before I die. To be able to re-think the mundane and turn it into inspired innovation (which sells at a premium, mind you) is truly a gift.
I am totally inspired by the groundbreaking force-to-be-reckoned-with of social media it what is proving to be pivotal in the historic events in Iran this week.
It has catapulted a technology that I was previously entirely cynical about into the realms of the truly revolutionary with average Iranian citizens able to get their personal experiences out to the world despite media blackouts and internet censorship with simple micro-blogging.
Hooray for a media coming of age and finding it’s worth. I am brimming with ideas to incorporate Twitter methodologies into our work!
In its latest installment of viral goodness, Burger King offers you ‘Flame’, the IT-fragrence of 2008 and perfect holiday gift for the spicy-hot-man-who-has-everything on your holiday list. Check it out at the brilliantly named website: firemeetsdesire.com.
Reported to make your man smell like "the scent of seduction with a hint of flame-broiled meat."…..mmmmmm, sexy.
It is a bargain at its $3.99 price point and available at Ricky NYC or online.
The power of You Tube continues to amaze me. The Coolbrands list I referred to on the previous post ranked it in the top 5 and it's unquestionably a titan of online content. One simple example of the power of You Tube surfaced for me the other day. I came across a 55 second video of 2 kids called "Charlie Bit My Finger". Watch it here. It's been viewed over 55 million times by people around the world, which is quite remarkable, but what I find even more astonishing are the spoofs, homages and remixes of the clip, put together by other people. You Tube has long championed this type of community and brand involvement and that's why it's so strong. In a great post yesterday, Martin Bishop references a new book called the Brand Bubble,which argues that many big brands are "dangerously overvalued" because investors look for a different type of brand value (brand trust and awareness) vs. a more consumer driven desire for "creativity and change" or a sense of "movement and direction". In theory that sounds tough for me to believe as people a notorious for avoiding change, but I'm sure I've oversimplified and the data in this book is allegedly very compelling. If You Tube is any indication (or Google, Apple, Nintendo or Virgin), then perhaps we should be looking a different metrics to measure brand value. The human journey offered by little clips on You Tube may be a good place to start.
It’s conceptual…it’s a metaphor…it’s a personification…it’s aspirational…it’s a gimmick…it’s just plane confusing. I like a good mental challenge as much as the next girl, but I find LG’s Scarlet promotion of their flat screen TVs ties my brain into a knot of Gordian proportions. For those unfamiliar with the campaign, LG has created a fictional…well…fictional character named Scarlet – a red eyed super-something (hero? cop? spy? cyborg? vampire? siren? model?) The ads feature fictional promotions for the fictional TV show for the fictional character and end with a blink-and-you-miss-it oblique reference to flat screen TVs. Every time I come across this campaign, I find myself plagued with questions: What is it? Why is it? and Do I like it? And, strangely, the answer on all three counts is: I’m not sure. Explanations from the producers just deepen the mystery with vague Lynch-ian quotes about clues and martial arts: LG Reveals Mystery Behind 'Scarlet' I can’t help but think that if people who do this sort of thing for a living can’t figure it out, there is no way consumers are coming along on this journey down the rabbit hole. Is this a sign of abstraction in brand communications to come? Or did they forget to take that left at ambiguity?