January 28, 2012

Golf in the dark

While in Mumbai, on one of the days, I was able to squeeze in two hours of golf from 6 - 8am, before a full-day of meetings. The course of choice was the Willingdon Golf Club. Because we needed to get a very early start, the first two holes were completely in the dark, on a course I had never been too before. It was my very first time using glow-in-the-dark golf balls before and I had to trust the caddie was giving me the right on direction, location of bunker and terrain. I was amazed of how well I completed the first holes. You suddenly realize that if you focus on what you're doing, relax, rely blindlessly on your muscule memory, you can accomplish what you set out to do. I learned that losing a bit of that sense of control is actually a good thing.

Very cool experience.

Cadbury Dairy Milk creative from India

I just spent an amazing week in Mumbai, India, attending a global chocolate & biscuit meeting. Amazing on so many levels. Starting off with trade visits in the streets of Mumbai was incredible.
It's remarkable how much inventory shop owners get into these very small shops. Low out-of-pocket SKU's, value propositions, enhanced shelf impression and displays exploring every possible inch of the store was pretty much consistent. We then had the opportunity of spending a few hours speaking to local teens and listening to the way they consider, shop, interact with our categories and brands. These were Indian teens but much of their aspirations and comments on their day-to-day lives reminded me of teens in Colombia or Mexico.

We'll, if you're in the chocolate business and in India, you know just how iconic the Cadbury Dairy Milk brand is here. So, we spent time listening to the local team talk about the brand's success over the years. Much of that success linked to fantastic creative from Ogilvy always using deep insights and a pulse on local culture. Watching the advertising reel with spots from the past decade was incredible. I personally enjoyed the current Shubh Aarambh campaign. The insight is that there's a saying in India that when someone is off to something important, they should eat something sweet.

Simple storytelling, suberb acting, product central to the story. Great creative spans boundaries...

January 21, 2012

The story behind the chinese takeout container

I've always been a huge fan of packaging, both structural and graphic. I enjoyed reading the other day in The New York Times Magazine the story behind the iconic chinese takeout container - this simple, super functional and totally ubiquitous container.

There always seems to be a good story behind simple concepts.

Movements are cooler when they happen spontaneously

One of the most fascinating movements in the past months was not necessarily digital.... what is being called the Post-It Wars is just one of those cool cases that any marketing guy would love this to happen with your own brand.

It`s interesting to see that, many times, the best brand movements initiate and spread spontaneously, a legitimate grassroots movement and not the result of the traditional creative process.

January 13, 2012

Life captured in HD

This week, I'm skiing in beautiful Beaver Creek Colorado. Clear skies, 7F, base depth 71cm... life is good. One thing that caught my attention thies season is the amount of skiers using the cameras mounted on their helmets. At the ski shop I checked ou the GoPro HD Hero2 - "The World's Most Versatile Camera". Check-out what these little things can do.

In our YouTube way of living, it seems like life has to be captured in HD.

January 2, 2012

First Jell-O just for adults with the use of new vending technology

I'm always interested in following the evolution of vending machines. So, I was very happy see how Kraft Foods is using a new technology to test six jelly desserts targeted at adults. The machine uses an optical sensor fitted to the top of the machine to recognise the shape of the human face. A computer processor then carries out a series of calculations based on measurements such as the distance between the eyes, nose and ears. This new vending machine analyses users' age and gender has been launched in the U.S. Market by Intel and Kraft Foods, called iSample.

Kraft Foods in the U.S. is using this cool technology to sample Temptations - a jelly-based dessert marketed as 'the first Jell-O that's just for adults'.

One of the concerns about sampling programs is making sure the investment goes against the brand's core demographic. In this case, the use of this new vending technology allows
Kraft to tailor the product to the shopper, and exclude children from the adult-focused promotion.

You can only imagine many other ways this technology can be used in. Intel says it intends to retrofit the technology to existing vending machines to allow companies to study what type of people are buying their products.