Monthly Archives: February 2016

Anatomy of An Insight: Grilled Dogs Featuring Snoop Dogg

I love when you make a blatant product announcement interesting:

Insight: Snoop is Doggy Dogg and Burger King has introduced hot dogs, see the connection?

Sometimes you just let people know that you have a new product out. You use celebrities to borrow relevance so that people will listen and then you ensure that your content is genuinely funny or moving. This “internal training video” definitely made me laugh, starting from the smoky entrance of Snoop D-O-double G.

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If You Want To Win in Life You Have To Go Little Berserk

“To be a consistent winner means preparing not just one day, one month or even one year –but for a lifetime”
– Bill Rodgers

billrodgers

I have been reading many sports books lately (Open, Sports Gene to name a few). The latest one has been “Marathon Man” about Bill Rodgers. He was a runner who helped to broke running to mainstream and is recommended reading for anyone who runs.

The book is also an eye opening account on how recent phenomenon the jogging phenomenon is. The runners were odd freaks and smoking tobacco was normal. Boston Marathon did not even have water during the early days and Bill Rodgers won the Boston marathon running in oversized Nike shoes. He did it still in 2:09:55. Sports has developed quite a lot, but at the end of the day success is about simple things:

1.Training
There is no shortcut for not putting the miles. If you want to succeed in running, you have to run and run a lot.

“Only ran once – Shit F*** Fart!! about 13 miles at OK pace at 9:00 AM. too tired to run”
From Bill Rodgers training log

2.Strategy
Especially marathon is not only about just letting it go. It is about listening your body, knowing your opponents and knowing your terrain. Bill Rodgers trained on Boston Marathon route constantly and knew it inside out. He was well prepared to win it.

3.Intensity
He was also known as a guy who started out too fast and got burned at the end of the run (recognizing myself here). This handicap also made his great runner. His guts The guy who has the killer instinct will have the final edge. You have to push yourself to limit and then go for the win. If racing does not bring out your intensity, you do not have a change:

“I became intense about the marathon. But I am nowhere near that intense in the rest of my life. In fact, I think running is the only way in which I’m competitive. I have a need to run and sometimes I love it. It’s probably because I wasn’t really good at anything else.”
Bill Rodgers

Or like the late great Steve Prefontaine put it:

“A Lot of people run a race to see who is fastest. I run to see who has the most guts, who can punish himself into exhausting pace, and then at the end, push himself even more”

4. Philosophy
Sports is a much bigger thing than just competition. It is a way of life. If I do not get my morning training, I do not only feel the physical withdrawal, I also feel the mental effects. Pushing yourself to the limit has a strong spiritual aspect.

“Training need not be an all-or-nothing battle, involving punishing track practice, grueling calisthenics, and wrenching interval sessions every afternoon. It could be a fun and easy cruise through the gorgeous New England countryside. It could be an act of freedom by which I could step outside myself and my racing mind. A long run in nature could even be a way to connect my physical body with the unseen spirit of the universe.”

5. Community
Although running is a solitary act, you need other people to help and spar you on the way.

“And you can’t do it alone. No one can. Look at Alberto Salazar’s team now. With Bill Squires I learned to work with a group, we all became friends and supported each other. How cool is that? “
– Bill Rodgers

These things are not limited to running, but apply to all aspects of life.

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Case Nikon Singapore: How to Keep Beating Your Opponent

Many of you might have heard about Nikon Singapore´s photo competition screw-up. They awarded clearly photoshopped photo and apparently a stolen idea. While it is not the biggest failure of the world, it is slightly embarrassing. It would probably be forgotten quite soon, but their biggest competitor Canon does not want us to forget:

Canon Canada

Quite seldom social competition in Singapore catches the attention in Canada

As we can see, the post has gotten over 11k likes and 7k shares. That is quite great number for a Facebook post and a great indicator that people love when brands are bold and have balls.

Bold brands are cheeky, even frivolous. When their opponent (read: other brand) fails, they attack viciously. Business is about winning and losing and if you can help your rival brand lose even more go for more blows. There is three great lessons here to keep in mind when you thinking of competing with your archenemy:

  1. Admit your own mistakes fast and forget them even faster.
  2. However well on your opponent’s mistakes and rub it in their face. Do it as fast as possible.
  3. …but do it with tongue-in-cheek. It is ok to be evil if you smile at the same time.

Some people and brands need to have an enemy to get the best out of them.

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Are You A Sociopath or Loser?

My good friend recommended reading “Gervais Principle” written by Venkatesh Rao. I think it is probably one of the most on-point analyses of office dynamics. Essentially it is build on this triangle drawn by Hugh Macleod:

macleodcompanyhierarchySociopaths populate top-of-the-food-chain, the vast majority are losers and the guys in the middle have it worse. Losers have the option of turning to sociopath or turning into bare-minimum performers. If you are really clueless, you don’t really have a career path in front of you. Same thing applies for brands, either you are the best or you are the cheapest. Being in the middle is being in the valley of death. Gervais principle is essentially the following equation:

Sociopaths, in their own best interests, knowingly promote over-performing losers into middle-management, groom under-performing losers into sociopaths, and leave the average bare-minimum-effort losers to fend for themselves.

That being said, I was quite recently promoted. Jury is still out about where I fit in the triangle.

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Content is Nothing Without Context

In a recent study with Lóreal and Google, where they tested typical ad, tutorial and testimonial, there were some interesting results. First the typical ad had the best view-through-rate but was not necessarily driving action so much.

viewthroughrate

What really struck me on the study were the following points:

 

1) If you are interrupted, you want to be interrupted with something that looks good.

Pre-rolls have been around for a while so people are expecting to see ads when they are checking YouTube. It is almost like an ad break, but apparently slightly more annoying.

 

2) Women are actively looking for the tutorials, not ads

Especially this is true to the millennials, they are used to less ad-looking content production. If you are interrupted with tutorial when you want to watch a tutorial, not surprisingly you are not necessarily watching it through.

 

3) Younger audience appreciates the more “real” approach and it drives more action

 youngeraudience

action

This pretty much highlights the point I have been going through for a while. Brands need to have their ad and content game in check. Creating great content is not supplementing the hard-working ads. And vice-versa: hard-working ad is quite seldom great content. What works as a pre-roll does not necessarily work in another formats.

Content production is totally meaningless if you do not think the context where you are showing it.

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Finnair Stopover Cock-Up

Finnair has a stopover concept in collaboration with VisitFinland.com. In principle it is a great idea to encourage people to come to visit Finland while they are flying Finnar to other destinations. Main emphasis in the term “in principle”.

As I am traveling to Copenhagen this spring, I thought it would be awesome opportunity to utilize tise stopover concept. Expect the booking system does not work. I have tried to do a booking with different browsers, different computers but essentially it always comes back to the starting point. I doubt that tourists are willing to go through too many hoops to be able to come visit Finland. I at least have some vested interest to go the extra mile. Moment-of-truth for your brand is always.

bookingform

That’s not all. Below there is aggregator of #visitfinland-hashtag. Some of the updates are dubious to say at least (like the one in right) and give totally different “feel” to Finnair:visitfinlandfail2

Currently there is no hardcore porn aggregated to the site like last weekend, but I still suppose that having #visitfinland combined with #ihaveburningpussy in your brand´s webpage is not necessarily the right brand association you want have:

visitfinlandfail

Or maybe it is and this is just a smart viral stunt to lure more sex tourists to Finland?

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