December 27, 2014

A Photo that says lot about how mobile is shaping the world we live in

The 2014 National Geographic Photography Winner is a stunningly beautiful representation of one of the many ways that mobile technology is shaping the world we live in.  A transformation that is liberating but also daunting.

Brian Yen's captivating photo "A Node Glows in the Dark", taken inside a Hong Kong train, captures that moment we all know so well:  immersing ourselves into some virtual corner of cyberspace while we get the false feeling that everything around us comes to a stand still.  A situation that is becoming increasingly common.

How can we continue to benefit from this little remote control that transports us to so many places and yet still take the time to be cognizant of the what's happening around us, to interact with those next to us, to engage with the now?

Aristotle said that "The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things but their inner significance."  This photo does exactly that.

December 26, 2014

NBA's powerful social media influencing Pop Culture

As an NBA Sponsor, I'm continuously amazed of how well the NBA works social media.  No matter where you look, what you read, there's NBA buzz everywhere and the conversation is amplified by die-hard fans in so many ways.  Even today, on Christmas Day, The New York Times carried a great article on Melissa Brenner - NBA's Sr. Vice President for Digital Media - on how this is the most tweetable time of the year for the league.  Later in the day, I saw a very funny article on the Bleacher Report suggesting an "NBA Emoji", something that would serve as another incentive for fans to continue to talk about what happens before, during and after the games.

The NBA is a great example of the power of social media as a way to influence Pop Culture, an interesting case study for brands.

December 18, 2014

Exploring the Cooper-Hewitt Design Museum in NY

Today, I took my Family to visit the newly renovated Cooper-Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum in New York (2 E 91st Street / +1 212 8488400) that reopened its doors last week.

 If you're into marketing, you certainly love design and the fascinating intersection of beauty and functionality. So, on your next trip to Manhattan, it's worth exploring this museum. For my two teenage daughters, they enjoyed playing designer on touchscreen tables developed by Ideum using interactive software by Local Projects. The girls had fun sketching lamps, tables, chairs and wallpaper. Museums are always more interesting when technology can provide a hands-on experience.

For me, museum exploration is always a great way to be inspired by creativity and ideas. I believe we stimulate our intellectual curiosity when we actively seek opportunities to look for connections across different disciplines.

December 14, 2014


I've always believed thay my car's GPS was my best way for me to get from point A to B.  However, this evening I had to take my 15-year-old daugther to one of her friend's house, who lives far away in the suburbs.  The GPS system didn't recognize the address I was keying in since we weren't sure about the exact city district.  In large metro areas with more than one street with the same name, it gets a little tricky.  That's when my daughter said:  ''Don't worry, let's use Waze.''   In less than a minute, she was exchanging messages with friends who had already arrived, who pinned the location and we were getting driving instructions from Waze on her smartphone.  For me, it was another great example of the power of community-based apps.

Waze's positioning sums up what they're about:  'outsmarting traffic, together.'

December 13, 2014

IKEA's beautiful campaign reminding us what is truly important during the Holiday Season

For those concerned about the excessive consumerism that we all see around us during the Holiday Season, IKEA's new advertising campaign in Spain - called 'La Otra Carta / The Other Letter', created by McCann is a wonderful and timely wake-up call.  Even if you may not be fluent in Spanish the message is clear.  Ten families were invited to an 'experiment'.  Kids were asked to write two letters:  one for Santa and one for their parents... the result is emotional, powerful, memorable, a celebration to what is truly important.

Cheers to beautiful creative!

December 9, 2014

Cooking is cool!

My wife has enrolled at Le Cordon Bleu's Madrid Culinary Institute, starting next January. I'm thrilled that she'll be combining years of passion, reading, catering and experimenting with the discipline of formal training.

As a marketing guy, it's fascinating to see how the business of cooking has developed into a powerful element of pop culture.  From the adictive Food Network programming, to Masterchef-style reality shows, to the farm-to-table movement, to the anticipation of the Michelin Guide release, to the food truck festivals, to the evolution of our local farmer markets...  cooking is cool!

This past weekend, my wife and I watched the wonderful film "The Hundred-foot Journey" directed by Lasse Halstörm and based on the best-selling novel by Richard Morais, a beautifully sensitive story about how food has the power of bringing people together.

Worth watching.