Sunday, May 9, 2010

KLM - performance art creates buzz (and smiles)


I absolutely love guerilla marketing as a way to generate brand buzz and launch new products. Here is a new favourite from KLM to launch their new "Economy Comfort Zone" on intercontinental flights. The event takes place in Manchester Airport using the Dutch magician Ramana. Advertising that generates awareness and smiles is a powerful duo, combined with the viral effect this ad will generate, it's a very effective campaign indeed.

Hema - viral launch of an eCommerce site

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Sometimes examples of well-executed creative ideas take a while to cross the ocean. This is one from Holland that I thought was really fun and effective.

HEMA is a Dutch department store that opened it's first door in 1926 in Amsterdam. There are currently 150 stores all over Holland. In June 2008 they launched a campaign to promote their new online shop, but instead of a creating a typical digital ad, their agency turned the new website of HEMA itself into a viral hit, based on the simple message: "The products of HEMA can now be found online at"

The website had 700.000 visitors the first week, and 1.500.000 after a month. It was featured on all major blogs in the Netherlands as well as worldwide blogs such as Gizmodo, BoingBoing, Wired. It got over 2.400 Diggs. Google blog search reports over 2.000 mentions of the site's name.

The Best Ideas - breakfast with Seth Godin

Seth Godin requires no introduction. I happily subscribe to his words of wisdom and creative inspiration that are sent every day, rain, snow or sun. You can too. This little pearl was delivered into my inbox this morning. I read it while munching on my Raisin Bran with bananas and a sipping a cup of (Starbucks French Roast) coffee. I thought I would share it you.

"Do you often find ideas that change everything in a windowless conference room, with bottled water on the side table and a circle of critics and skeptics wearing suits looking at you as the clock ticks down to the 60 minutes allocated for this meeting?

If not, then why do you keep looking for them there?

The best ideas come out of the corner of our eye, the edge of our consciousness, in a flash. They are the result of misdirection and random collisions, not a grinding corporate onslaught. And yet we waste billions of dollars in time looking for them where they're not.

A practical tip: buy a big box of real wooden blocks. Write a key factor/asset/strategy on each block in big letters. Play with the blocks. Build concrete things out of non-concrete concepts. Uninvite the devil's advocate, since the devil doesn't need one, he's doing fine.

Have fun. Why not? It works".

Isn't that the greatest idea! I wonder if this would work in a group setting. Often I find that these collisions and new ideas come from getting a group of people together from different functions and backgrounds to look at an issue or opportunity.

Feel free to share your most effective techniques on generating good ideas.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Crowdsourcing creative needs- innovative options for budgets small and large

Over the past two years, a number of creative services crowdsourcing sites have emerged providing services you would typically find at an ad agency - everything from logo design, advertising development, website design, video creation, to brand naming and tag lines. The more well known of these sites includes, genuisrocket, and Victors & Spoils.

So how do these work? and Geniousrocket have a similar approach.
  1. You develop a creative brief which is posted on their site. You select a reward/prize anywhere from $100 upwards depending on the scope of the project . A flat fee is charged by the site (20% on the prize at GR or a project brief fee $39 at 99D)

  2. Your project is uploaded to the website and designers from around the world submit their creations. During the ideation phase, there's an opportunity for creators to correspond with the client in order to get more clarification or info
  3. select the winner
  4. rights transfer
Victors & Spoils works differently from the two sites mentioned above. It's model seems similar to an ad agency but with a big difference in that it harnesses the principles of crowdsourcing to develop work. In a very real sense, they end up with a virtual, hand-picked creative department. In this case, you play the more traditional role of the client. The CCO at V&S is Evan Fry, an ex-Crispen & Porter.

Here's a little more on them, edited from their website:

".... it’s our goal to provide businesses with a better way to solve their marketing, advertising and product-design problems by engaging the world’s most talented creatives.

...companies need an alternative.., one that offers the strategic direction, engagement and relationship management that agencies deliver today, but one that also delivers the engagement, cultural relevance, results and return on investment that crowdsourcing {if managed and directed well} can deliver".

Two very interesting approaches that serve different audiences and needs.

Have you crowdsourced any of your projects - or submitted creative work? I would love to hear about your experience.