April 22, 2014

Meeting David Edelman

For the past months, I've been following David Edelman - McKinsey & Company - through different sources of social media, enjoying his posts, insights and pieces of wisdom.  He has a fascinating way of explaining how companies have to re-think, evolve and adapt to a business environment that is going through amazing change based on the adoption of technology.  A theme that is at the center of any business discussion no matter what category you work in, no matter where you are in the World.  Disruption is around the corner, a block away from opportunity.

After a few phone inspiring phone conversations, I finally had the opportunity of meeting him earlier today here in Madrid.  It's great to speak to people who make you think but who also provide rich discussion that enables you to find solutions to complex issues.  Great conversation.

April 14, 2014

Spring Festival combing 5K, Live DJs, Color... welcome to Holi Run

This past Saturday, our teenage daughter said she was going to a running event with her friends.  I didn't quite understand because she's not particularly into running at all.  Then, she told me it was an event called Holi Run, so I looked it up and realized it's an event inspired by the ancient Hindu religious festival, primarily observed in India, Nepal and other regions of the world with large Hindu populations.  The Holi Run event is a spring festival that combines a 5K, live DJ and a carnival atmosphere with lots of color.

Through Wikipedia, I learned that Holi is celebrated at the approach of the vernal equinox and the festival signifies the victory of good over evil, the arrival of spring and for many a day to have fun with friends, laugh, get drenched in color, forget and forgive.

By looking at the photos uploaded to her Instagram, I realize that for this generation event marketing takes on a whole new meeting.  As a marketing professional, it makes me think that to connect with this demographic we need to consider mashing up culture references like music, sports, entertainment... where social connection is the new currency.

Getting inspiration from Pixar

Yesterday, my wife took our family to the Pixar - 25 Years of Animation exhibit at CaixaForum here in Madrid.  An outstanding experience well worth visiting.  The exhibit is a wonderful peak behind the scenes of the creative process of the company's 12 feature films through drawings, models, videos and installations.  It's an amazing demonstration of the power of combining art, technology, storytelling... and business.

What a powerful inspiration for marketing teams as we develop campaigns with our creative agencies.  
How can we build more compelling storytelling for our brands?  

April 11, 2014

The Advantage of MyTaxi App for a Parent of Teenage Daughters

Here in Madrid, I'm hooked on MyTaxi App and like any good service I've talked about it to friends.

Since it has been a year now without a car, as a Family, we use a lot of cabs.  Anybody who uses these taxi apps today knows how convenient they are.  However, I realize there's another clear benefit for someone like me who has a pre-teen and a teenage daughter.  It's wonderful from a security perspective.  When we need to send a cab to pick one of our daughters up from an after-school activity we usually use a taxi driver we have known since we arrived in the city.  However, the other day he was off duty so I used the MyTaxi App.  The piece of mind is that the app displays the driver's name, photo, vehicle and license plate.  For someone who has personally been a victim of urban violence, this is a great product feature.

I wonder what other ways technology can provide people with a sense of security?

April 2, 2014

Handmade still has its charm

At a time when anything remotely cool seems to have a technology label on it, it's quite surprising to see entrepreneurs placing a bet on the charm of handmade.  A friend of mine who is very much an early adopter for interesting stuff was wearing a pair of Palens Wood Sunglasses the other day.  She told me about how she found this little workshop in Barcelona with local guys who found a market niche and are producing with a sustainable approach, using social media to make their story heard.

Cool story.

Small contribution to the soccer-related economy

Just a little over 2 months before planet earth stops to watch 2014 FIFA World Cup in Brazil.

Behind  this global event is an amazing multi-billion dollar business.  In a year like this, it's only natural that my soccer consumption dramatically increases.  I have been going to the stadium at least twice a week and  I just made a very small contribution to the soccer-related economy by buying a professional fussball table from a company called RS Barcelona.  The online buying experience was great, allowing a variety of customization options.  We settled for a white table, black pitch with the players representing defending World Cup Champions Spain against my legendary Brazil National Team (no other choice would do).  The only detail missing was that I wanted to have the name of the players hand-painted on the back of the jerseys, a detail I would have paid an extra to have.

Enjoying evening fun while the World Cup doesn't start...