Think Hard

How to start a movement…

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In these days of online brand adoption where speed is of the essence and scaling is what tech brands most need, creating a movement is an essential for brands.

Movements need leaders (the brand owner or CEO) but more importantly they need followers and early adopters and mavens who will ignite the movement.

Here’s a great example of one from Derek Sivers’ TED Talk.

Marketing Star Awards
April 17, 2015, 10:30 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

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One of the things I do a lot is write marketing and business awards entries.  So I was delighted this morning to read the shortlist for the Scottish Marketing Star Awards.

Without betraying confidence or going into specifics my papers garnered 11 nominations and 5 indirect nominations across 5 different clients and case studies.  Obviously most of the credit goes to the work but that doesn’t always translate into goods stories and good stories is what attracts the judges.

It was tough writing all those papers in Jan/Feb but seems to have paid off.

This is a really great talk from Gerry Farrell.

It’s about flipping oneself away from pessimism in the creative process.

Lasts 30 minutes but worth every second.  Some great showmanship and some great case studies.

Thinking inside the box has never been so interesting.


Good luck Emperor Design

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Forth Children’s Theatre’s annual review.  Created for free by Emperor Design.  Much gratitude and it’s amazing.  Personally I think the photography is neat ;).

Songs I liked in 2014.
December 6, 2014, 3:42 pm
Filed under: creativity | Tags: , , ,

This is my eighth year of publishing my best of the year CD.  I think it’s one of the best yet despite reducing my music purchasing in 2014.  Seems what I did buy were high quality (but you can be the judges of that).

It’s an 18 song set (actually the last track is the best Joke ever told) Of the remaining 17 three were published in 2013 and either escaped my attention or I just forgot to put them on last year’s disc.  Best represented country of origin is probably Scotland with 5 contributions.

There are 8 (indie or Alt) rock songs, 5 Pop, 2 dance and 2 electronic/folk.

It’s a misnomer that I favour female singers.  There are only 3 on this year’s release .  and there were only 4 last year.

If you want a copy you only have to ask. (And I’d be interested in your comments.)

Happy Christmas.

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It’s nearly 20 years since we started our advertising agency
July 23, 2014, 3:49 pm
Filed under: advertising, brands, business, creativity, marketing, social media | Tags: ,

Wanna join us?

The only criterion is that you were staff, supplier or client.  But friends will be welcome too.

1576_XX copy

Sign up here or email me.  You should know my email.  Or comment below.

Relax. You’re only a brand.
April 29, 2014, 8:48 am
Filed under: advertising, brands, creativity, marketing, Uncategorized | Tags: , ,


Dave Trott’s blog post in Campaign today is one of the best I’ve read in a very long time.

Trotty has the knack of getting to the nub of an argument and making his point eloquently and, well, pointedly.

In this he talks about how the Movember movement, when in its infancy, approached a Prostate charity to offer them the proceeds of their fundraising and asking for endorsement to do so.  They told them they were a serious charity and this was just silly.  (They were essentially ‘above’ it.)

They went elsewhere and have now raised $300million for the second choice (Prostate Research).

The lack of spontaneity in marketing, or the strict adherence to brand guidelines, the unwillingness to take chances, to act like humans act with the occasional throwing of caution to the wind infuriates me at times because great ideas, like this one, are passed over.

My ‘favourite’ response to unorthodoxy?

“Oh I don’t think we could do that.  It’s too creative.”

Well, tell that to the marketing manager at an unknown and struggling Prostate Cancer charity .



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