Category Archives: digiOOH_

we are hard-wired for ‘same day’

Much of the heat around the Walmart and ‘eBay Now‘ plans to test same-day shipping has been generated through the positioning of these efforts as a ‘retail/e-tail battle royale’ with pretty much everyone against Amazon.

Rebecca Greenfield at The Atlantic writes: “Walmart will send Internet-purchased items to you the very same day as online check-out, in 5 select cities…Amazon already offers that same quick delivery time in 10 cities…Walmart [has] 4,000 stores primed for this delivery option…Amazon…40 warehouse distribution centers. That means Walmart could offer same-day delivery to a lot more people in far more obscure places.”

Game on!

There are operational and logistical hurdles to overcome (and Amazon’s done this “e-mmediate” thing before – remember Kosmo?), but with the global near-ubiquity of mobile, marketers should pay close attention: when you can impulse-buy anywhere there’s a data up/down, every brand impression is a potential point-of-sale.

Imagine: on your lunch break, you see a Coca-Cola awning – a minute with your mobile, and Amazon ‘Same-day’ has a case waiting on your doorstep when you get back from work. All the light touches that add up to our personal brand experiences – vending machines, retail signage, delivery trucks, packaging, social media, and yes, advertising – are purchase-enabled product shelving in the infinite aisle of Amazon.

(And people LIKE instant gratification – the more instant the better. We are hard-wired for same-day. That’s why 3-d printing is the next industrial revolution and all this will change again.)

Granular sales attribution to individual brand expressions may be hellish, but if Amazon, eBay and Walmart (and their partners) enable infinite-shelf impulse-buy, could this be a way for CMO’s to use their brand footprints in entirely new ways to drive revenue? Could an unintended consequence of “Same Day” be a reconsideration of the right column for ‘Marketing’ on the P&L (revenue, instead of expense?), and with it, a reconsideration of the value of brand communications in the overall revenue mix?

I think it’s cool to get stuff the same day. Or even better: yesterday.

what do you think?



I’m done with Foursquare

Remember when foursquare was a ruthlessly brutal playground “app” where you downloaded a BALL from the GYM and kicked ASS?

HELL yeah.

"Three enter, but only one can serve."

Then it became an OCD compulsion.

I couldn’t talk to the hostess at a restaurant til I’d checked in.

Or land without fumbling for my mobile and using the last of its battery (EVERY F-ING TIME) to tally another airport.

When I became the on-again, off-again “mayor” of Sadness (aka Portland International Airport, or PDX), I knew I was pushing it.

When I was dethroned as the “mayor” of the Auburn Hills Marriott Pontiac at Centerpoint, in Pontiac Michigan, 4square suggested cheerfully that a few more soul-sucking stops there might ‘put me back on top’.


I’m not over geolocation – I believe it’s huge and getting huger and will be super super huge. But here’s the thing: I want more storytelling and less box ticking. More participatory narrative, less faster badge acquisition. Things like Blacktop, or Casey Halverson’s Nike+ hack are neat directional moves…but they focus on automating the process of check ins and check in aggregation, and I want ones that deepen the actual experience.

Geolocative DEPTH, not breadth. In the moment, not for posterity

Things that make ‘being in a place’ about more than a few finger taps and adequate wireless coverage.

W+K+Schmidt+Birkett+N900+OneDotZero = fun

As part of our effort on behalf of the Nokia N900, W+K London partnered with computational designer  Karsten  Schmidt and software architect Gary Birkett in conjunction with OneDotZero to demonstrate what happens when

per Birkett:

“we are using a 3 inch display to try to control a 70 foot
display”. Based on the N900’s accelerometer, the software uses an
interface that takes movement data from the handset and sends it to the
projection app, created by Schmidt.”

This is so cool, it must be 37 degrees

OK – so that's a reference to the "perfect pour" temperature of Coke – 37 degrees Fahrenheit – that optimizes the drinking experience to the point you have to sit down to drink it or your brain will explode with pleasure.  And frankly, that'd be a mess, what with the bubbles and all.

I know that because (disclaimer) I have the pleasure to work with Coke.

Read about Coke's "interactive fountain" in Fast Company today.  Touch screen + 46-ounce concentrated flavor cartridge = your perfect Coke.  That in and of itself is pretty neat.

Coke machine

But I like it for two reasons – one that was stated in the article, one that wasn't:

(1) According to the article, "Another perk is the business data the dispenser sends back to Coke's headquarters in Atlanta.
The machines upload data about beverage consumption, peak times, and
popular locations. Coke can also talk back to the machine, letting it
know if a particular flavor needs to be discontinued or recalled and
causing it to stop serving the drink immediately."  This is FANTASTIC.  The machines become real-time focus groups and interactive sales terminals.  As long as the info generated isn't left in the hands of the inventory department but rather feeds the broader marketing organization, this has significant implications.

(2) This machine will feed a fundamental behavior intrinsic to Coke's target audience – sharing.  you can't create a witch's brew flavor without the friend next to you asking for "just a sip" to compare to their concoction – and you'll probably see an uptick in sales as people 'experiment' with different flavors.  Expect different flavor combinations (the more esoteric the better) to form fan groups and passion communities online.  Expect #Coke flavored hashtags cropping up on Twitter, etc. etc. etc.

The machines don't just mix flavors, they start conversations.  probably not unlike the ones that mmay have happened at soda fountains.  Even better?  Good-natured arguments.  And THAT is cool.

"My Diet Vanilla Black Cherry Bomb is tastier than Biff's Crap-tastic mix…"

Kudos to Coke for harnessing a technology that speaks to both their heritage (the soda fountain) and their future.  And for turning their product into a participatory experience. 


Coraline Marketing


[ Mike Baker's reconceived pulp 'Coraline' cover, from his blog 'Knack for Art':]

You haven't seen a lot from me on W+K's marketing efforts behind Coraline. 

The best gauge of a campaign is what other people say about it anyway, right?   And other folks have done a great job of covering it – Ward @ Drawn and The Future of Ads pretty much nail it, and if you missed anything, 'Evil Buttons' is the unoffical blog we've all been reading to track the campaign and its offshoots. 

Phil Knight was interviewed by AdAge about the Coraline marketing effort and had this to say:

"The original agreement was that Focus [Features] would do the advertising, but in
some of the early meetings, it was clear that we had a difference of
opinion on the advertising — "target audience" being one. They were
used to doing "data" advertising: They wanted to push this more as a
kiddie film, because that's what the data told them. And Nike and
Wieden & Kennedy together had grown up with what I call "emotional
essence advertising" — the essence of the product is its emotional
core, and you push that. It was two very different approaches, and it
kind of became clear in some of those early meetings that we had a very
strong difference of opinion. And to Focus' credit, they said, "OK, why
don't you guys try it? There's no use in fighting this thing. Let's
negotiate a different way to market this thing."
Marketing Quals ("emotional essence" types) and Quants ("data" advertisers) have been slugging it out for a while, so I wanted to share this nugget:

Pundits projected a $9MM opening weekend for Coraline, and $32MM total run gross.

We are damn proud that after a $16.3MM opening weekend take, Coraline's 3rd week US gross stands now at $53.93MM and counting. 

See the Future in Malmo


Unsworn Industries, maker of the 'Telemegaphone Dale' have just announced the launch of their 'Parascopes, Malmo' – site-specific "binoculars" that show not the present, but the future.  Specifically, the impact of a proposed urban planning effort.  Rather than put the plans on view in Malmo city hall, they built immersive viewers people can use to see the potential of the proposals in situ.  Nice.

Participatory Global Viral Video – how many more 2.0 words can you fit in and still have a failed marketing strategy?

Viral viral viral.  If you read my blog, you know I hate the term.  It isn't a term anyone agrees on, other than "viral marketing agencies" who are trying to sell it like special sauce.  For the most part, that sauce is brown, lumpy and unpredictable, like the "gravy" you get at Applebee's.  Marketers like the concept of 'viral', because to them it means "cheap media" (make a video, or app, or whatever, and distribution is FREE!), or it lets them say they "get social media" to whoever is checking off the boxes on their annual evaluation form.  But nothing is viral that PEOPLE DON'T LIKE, and figuring out WHAT PEOPLE WILL LIKE is a game everyone can play, but few play well.  Which is why most advertising SUCKS.

We've had some good hits – the Kobe jumps Aston + snakes, the
FIFA Street 3 spot, etc., but it is, to a degree, a gamble.  Like a good date.

So a video folks are talking about is this one for Stride gum, found by Melissa Sconyers on the NY Nokia Search team.

It's worth a look for two reasons: (1) it shows the power of participatory community, which is actually more interesting than the concept OR the execution, and (2) it shows how jumping onto a popular video may or may not be right for a brand.  At the end of this video, do you get that this is actually a marketing vehicle for Stride gum?  I didn't.  And I knew it before I watched, then I even clicked through to Matt's site, looking for a logo or brand mention (the logo is there, at the bottom of the page, looking very Dad at the disco). 

The story of the video as Matt tells it:
He has friend shoot video of him dancing badly in Hanoi.  Stride gum
sends him around the world to do the dance in a wide variety of places
(normal "YouTube-viral-type-web-2.0-3.0" thing).  But AFTER that video was made and
posted, people sent him their own.  And that gave him an idea.  He
re-pitched Stride with a new idea.  He traveled the world again,
inviting those people to join him.  Participatory viral goes global.

Read more here: (the website is sponsored by Stride)

And please practice safe viral.

RIP, Water Horse Digital Video Outdoor WTF

Here there was once video (apparently pirated) from a Japanese news broadcaster showing the unbelievably cool outdoor digital projection of the ‘water horse’ creature onto a live fountain.  Sick animation.  Cool Japanese language supers.  Breathless announcer.  And now?  Only this:

I am so sad. They say there can be only one water horse in the world at a time…perhaps the footage lives on somewhere else, a single file, undiscovered?

Radical Transparency

If you had any questions about the transformative power of interactive media, repressive governments no longer do –  when they want to kill or crush their people, they are learning to start by killing the internet and mobile connections.  On the heels of Ukraine’s mobile powered Orange revolution, the SMS powered toppling of the government in Manila, and Uganda’s recent reinstatement of SMS after contested elections were sealed up, this from the AP, re Myanmar:

…soldiers in Myanmar…Friday…went after the Internet and mobile phones that have proven so vital and powerful in documenting the dramatic confrontations.

Modern technology has become the generals’ worst enemy.

Though the government has cut some phone landlines, it has had less success clamping down on mobile phones, [and] the immediacy has been vital in telling the world so it can act quickly as developments unfold

"The world doesn’t know where Burma is. Now they see images about
the situation and want to know more." Aung Zaw said.

"Students use cell phones
to SMS each other to share information," he said, referring to text
messages activists use to organize demonstrations or inform one another
of the locations of soldiers. "The junta can’t control the technology
totally, and it’s a huge difference (if you can) deliver the
information fast."