The Launch of my new company – to sit alongside Think Hard – in today’s Scotland on Sunday.

A big Thanks to Doug Cook for the photography.  Not to mention the corporate identity and the T Shirt designs.

You’ll find us here.  And if you’re a twitter fan follow us at @Planet_Blogger.

It’s a really simple idea.  For a modest monthly fee we’ll research and write a blogpost a week for your company.  You can go and do the things you like doing, don’t have enough time for and are good at.  We’ll do the heavy shifting on your blog.

planetblog SOS article

Social Marketing

Social marketing isn’t, like, facebook and twitter an’ all.

It’s the pursuit of behavioural change through marketing channels.

It most certainly includes “Old Skool” media such as TV and posters an’ all, but increasingly social MARKETING includes Social MEDIA, like facebook and Twitter an’ all.

Sometimes social marketeers usurp old skool marketing channels by leveraging their highly expensive TV airtime with communications that work online and we find ourselves in the reals of viral marketing.

(In Scotland The Leith Agency did it really well with the launch of their tsk tsk “Fanny” ads recently).

This Californian anti-smoking ad tries to do the same by being a bit fnaar, fnarr, risque pisque.

Knowing Californians (Pre Farrelley Brothers and Seth MacFarlane) this probably only aired once or twice (because they really aren’t into fart gags) and the real effort put online.

It’s hilarious.  It really is.  BUT.  Do you really think a few fart gags are going to change an addictive behaviour that it is lampooning in such away that merely makes the target market nod along in agreement.

“Yeah that’s me, that’s hilarious. In fact, my friend (sharing this experience with me) I’m so goddamed exhilerated by it, how about we go outside for a cigarette.”

Sorry, no cigar.

It’s a sketch.

At the risk of taking food out of my childrens mouths…

I would like to recommend a seminar being driven by my dear friend, ex-colleague, co-founder with me and Adrian Jeffery of 1576 Advertising Limited and competitor, David Reid, of Because Brands Matter.

It’s co-hosted with Shepherd and Wedderburn and looks into the branding of food and the legal protection of your IP rights.

It’s being held in Edinburgh on 17 April and you can register online at

Food for thought_ the key ingredients for creating and exploiting your brand

A new business offering

On Sunday Think Hard will reveal a new string to its bow.

It’s an exciting development that will open an entirely new strand of opportunity working with one of my most respected friends, clients and colleagues.

I can hardly wait to reveal all but for now you’ll just have to be content with watching this lovely film about kittens that I am sure will sufficiently satiate your need for exciting new stimuli.


More random Collisions

As I write I’m readying myself for our final supper. A dressy affair to thank the people who facilitated our trip Natalie Branosky, the wonderful Natalie Branosky indeed, of InclusionUS and Jim Galloway of CEC chief amongst those. But also SDI, Interactive Ontario, Miller Dickinson Blais, Authenticity, The City of Ontario and Martin Prosperity Institute. Each one a valuable contributor to a fabulous trip that has inspired us all.

Highlights of the trip have been Randy McLean’s talk at City of Ontario’s Economic development Team, Donald Henderson’s outstanding talk at Interactive Ontario and the most enjoyable networking event that we hosted on Tuesday Evening, The brilliant Chelsea of Pinewood Toronto Studios and John Young, MD of TV production company Temple Street Productions who demonstrated through his incredible Recipe to Riches Ad Funded Programme with Loblaws supermarkets just what is possible when you bring TV and digital together and think outside the box. For me this session was the single most inspiring meeting. But everyone we met made a great contribution to our learning and what adds up to a genuinely creative city.

We have much to do on our return to Edinburgh but we leave with a sense that little old Edinburgh has got a lot right. The naysayers love to argue the opposite and our city may sometimes exude complacency about its creative reputation because of the massive success of our festivals strategy. But we need positivity and a belief that if we put people together with the same fundamental objective random collisions will happen and great things will emerge.

To Jim and Natalie we owe a great deal of thanks. If nothing else I leave Toronto with ten great new friends and a feeling that anything is possible.

I also leave with a couple of pounds extra weight after a week of overconsumption and a fondness for Steam Whistle Pilsner Lager. Don’t look for it unless you’re reading this in Canada because it isn’t exported – more’s the pity.

The last act before the final supper was to visit Niagara Falls after a great tour of the NGen incubator unit hosted by Steve Boese, in nearby St Catherines. Niagara is billed as one of the seven natural wonders of the world. This is no idle boast. It’s an outstanding sight even if Niagarans have done their best to undo the awe with the surrounding buildings.

Well worth a visit.