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The Road to New Ventures: Now We Have To Eat thumbnail

The Road to New Ventures: Now We Have To Eat

As the old adage goes, “you have to see it to believe it.” A cliché? Quite so, and not always the case. But as we watched our agency’s visual identity come together, we couldn’t help but be energized. From a comical notion to a registered business, a faceless endeavor to a distinct and branded agency, Rain Dog Creative was becoming as real as we imagined it could be.

But that makes the process sound far smoother than it actually was.


When the Ass Sees the Angel thumbnail

When the Ass Sees the Angel

A few years ago an old friend of mine, Tim, was in Amsterdam for a stag weekend/bachelor party. The Hangover on bicycles. Like in the movie, he’d somehow lost all track of time and place until both came crashing back in a moment of terrifying clarity. He was standing semi-naked on a stage in a dimly lit basement. Next to a donkey. With a baying audience of Japanese businessmen throwing money at him.

Rather than simply observing the story, he’d become part of it. He was involved in a two-way conversation with the brand. Or, in his case, a donkey. It’s exactly what social media is doing for brands and their customers. Or is it?


Linsanity Isn’t All About Lin thumbnail

Linsanity Isn’t All About Lin

Until this February, Jeremy Lin was having a tough time at work. His dream of playing in the NBA had come true, but after going undrafted out of college and eventually seeing only little playing time during his contracts with the Golden State Warriors and Houston Rockets, his future in basketball looked dim.

Still, millions of Americans have had a much tougher time. The economic recession of the past three years has meant salary freezes, budget cuts, layoffs, debt and a lower standard of living for people who thought they lived in the land of opportunity.

It only took one night and one opportunity to turn Jeremy Lin’s life around, and all of a sudden anything was possible. Linsane, right?


Future You Marketing thumbnail

Future You Marketing

With our busy lives driven by work schedules, home and social demands (yes, I am sure some of us actually have lives outside of work), it’s surprising that we actually have time to eat a meal or sleep. The last thing we want to be asked is, “Please pay attention to this 5-minute commercial break.” When brands market to us, we expect it to be on our own terms, at a time when we’re most receptive and interested in the information, and with personally relevant content.


The Servant of Two Masters thumbnail

The Servant of Two Masters

It’s been said that you never see your homeland in its true light until you’ve lived away from it. The truth of this is re-affirmed for me each August, when I soak up the spectacle of the UK political party conference season with the comforting barrier of the North Sea between the principle actors and me. Free from the obscuring lens of self-interest, I can enjoy the show as an exercise in cultural anthropology – and an instructive lesson for anyone in the persuasion business.


The Mutha of All Branding Experts thumbnail

The Mutha of All Branding Experts

I recognize that “branding”, as a buzzword, lost its currency a long time ago but whatever the current lingo is (the ever-changing marketing lexicon that frequently substitutes for real understanding and knowledge and allows charlatans and so called experts to create enough uncertainty in you that you stop trusting your own instincts – this is not a science folks, common sense is still your greatest asset), branding remains the most basic and challenging job faced by marketers and advertising people alike. When we see it done well it looks easy yet it gets done well so rarely that there is something about the endeavor that clearly eludes the majority.


Plastic. The Next Great Brand Challenge thumbnail

Plastic. The Next Great Brand Challenge

“We live in a platform world!” an enthusiastic Jason Foster told me at the recentSustainable Brands Conference in Monterey. “Bulk, weight and mass are the new parameters for innovation.”

If this all sounds a bit confusing, let me backtrack. Foster has created an entirely new format for plastic spray bottles and containers that rethinks many of the core presumptions of the category.


Where Is The Green Brand Vision? thumbnail

Where Is The Green Brand Vision?

As the Chinese curse goes, we live in interesting times.

Climate change is disrupting our core belief in progress and unending bounty. It suddenly seems every purchase comes with guilt as an added feature.

That said, we still need and want stuff. No matter what Clay Shirky says about our transformation from a consumer to creative society, consuming is core to what we do.


How Do You Balance Trust? thumbnail

How Do You Balance Trust?

I’ve found myself thinking a tremendous amount about the notion of trust this week. Seriously though, a couple of disparate things crossed my desk that got the ol’ spidey-senses tingling.

One, I helped set up a Facebook account for my 75-year old parents. Now these are people with a passing acquaintance with the internet, let alone a high comfort level with tagging photos of their last tea and biscuits party.


What Can Scotch Teach You About Branding?? thumbnail

What Can Scotch Teach You About Branding??

Hilton Barbour
Marketing Provocateur
hiltonbarbour.com
When your mother’s maiden name is Anderson, you grow up with some very clear opinions on Scotland and all things Scottish. Scottish rain isn’t as ferocious as people say. Scots are genuinely friendly to outsiders – you just have to get past that gruff exterior. Hadrian’s Wall [...]


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