Author Archives: Jeremy Garner

Jeremy Garner is the Executive Creative Director of Weapon7.
@JeremyJGarner

Are brands playing the part?

As digital media continues to fragment and brands have to fight to maintain a consistent tone of voice, it’s always worth taking the time to reassess what it is that actually drives them.

stagedoor

Not what drives them in terms of business objectives, revenues, share of market, profits, share of mind and that kind of thing. I’m referring to what actually motivates them – what drives their passions and informs their character. In other words, what makes them act the way they do? What is their raison d’etre?

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If Isaac Newton worked in a digital creative agency…

It’s something of a contentious point these days, but digital creative agencies are still, primarily, purveyors of truth.

It may often be dressed up in words like ‘engagement’, ‘shareable’ and ‘social’, but the strongest of their creative ideas still have a solid truism at the core.

So it’s interesting to consider the quote of Isaac Newton, one of history’s greatest original thinkers, that ‘Truth is the offspring of silence and unbroken meditation‘.

Hmm.

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Meaningful human insights: Ask a machine?

Is it becoming harder to find powerful insights to inspire persuasive, innovative ideas?

It’s a highly subjective question which, no doubt, would generate a number of insightful answers in itself.

But, even though there are dozens – hundreds, thousands even – of different ways of arriving at consumer insights to hang a creative thought on; everything from focus groups and research panels, to good old brainstorm-fuelled serendipitous gut instinct, it’s always the same thing we’re after. And, generally speaking, we know it when we see it…

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The Curated Self – how social media creates the ‘virtual self’

The word ‘curator’ derives from the Latin curare meaning ‘take care’, and is commonly used in the context of cultural institutions; galleries, museums etc.

Over the course of the last year or so the term was increasingly used in conjunction with digital marketing, particularly social media-based campaigns. For fast-paced, content-driven comms planning, agencies would talk of acting as the ‘curator’ for the brand. In other words, deciding what content, stories, reactions, conversations and touchpoints to release at precisely the right time.

Now I think it can apply to the very nature of one’s digital identity itself.

 

 

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Is the internet leading towards a single, shared cultural identity?

Is the internet leading towards a single, shared cultural identity? Or is it facilitating a break-up into many smaller groups, each of which see themselves as having a defined culture of their own?

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Social media addiction – feelings of the new easy credit?

An oft-quoted definition of social media (even Facebook uses it) is from Andreas Kaplan and Michael Haenlein: ‘…a group of Internet-based applications that build on the ideological and technological foundations of Web 2.0, and that allow the creation and exchange of user-generated content’.

Well, perhaps a more pertinent, and possibly even more important, definition would be: ‘A group of Internet-based applications that generate feelings of addiction similar to that of consumerism during the mid-2000s’.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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SXSW @Austin done Tokyo style

For me, trying to choose a favourite talk from Austin’s SXSW interactive festival this week would be like lining up a row of twelve pots of deliciously fruity yoghurt and stating that I was only allowed to have one.

Agony.

Anyway, whatever the talk, and no matter what its theme, there’s great potential for use within digital advertising. It was good stuff. If someone tells you they weren’t inspired by SXSW then maybe they’re looking for fully-formed answers on a plate, whereas half the fun of this industry is taking a raw possibility, be it a technology or channel, and trying to do something different with it. Read more on SXSW @Austin done Tokyo style…

Was James Joyce a copywriter ahead of his time?

Everything is becoming more complicated.

It’s a given that consumers are spending less time on more tasks, giving everything less attention, and generally skipping around loads of subjects at any one time on Twitter, Facebook, TV, email, text and a thousand other digital touchpoints.

Now, the challenge of the digital marketer to gain entry into the consciousness of the time-and-touchpoint-squeezed consumer is greater than ever.

So it struck me as interesting when I read a quote in an essay by Lera Boroditsky, Assistant Professor of Psychology at Stanford University, that ‘consciousness is not unlike Twitter – millions of mundane messages bouncing around, all shouting over one another, with only a few rising as trending topics’.

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Memes and the model for a new agency

Meme: ‘A self-propagating unit of social imitation; something that people repeat and pass along’. Or, ‘Memes replicate data. And just as genes replicate genetic data, memes replicate cultural ideas’. Or, ‘lolcats’.

However you describe them, everyone loves a good meme. And, since the term was popularised by Richard Dawkins in his 1976 book ‘The selfish gene’, advertising has been responsible for generating many well-known examples. (Here’s one, oops sorry…no, two examples (in one): ‘Will it blend?’ for Blendtec.) And with the connectedness and social media channels offered by the web for brands to spread and share content, you would have thought that conditions were perfect for many more… Read more on Memes and the model for a new agency…

Technology so advanced a caveman could use it?

It’s an interesting contradiction that the further technology advances, the simpler and more instinctive it becomes to use.

Take the addictive interface functionality of an iPad or iPhone, for example. Watching people using it with simple, intuitive finger movements and hand gestures, it makes me wonder just how instinctive digital interactivity can become. (I mean, even cats are using it for Chrissakes. Such as these two cool customers, chillaxing with fish on an iPad, licking each other’s ears lazily and listening to rude music.) Read more on Technology so advanced a caveman could use it?…