Right Brain, Left Brain Blog

83 posts categorized "Business innovation"

07 July 2017

Toys and gender: What’s a brand to do?

The issue of gender-neutral advertising is a very tricky one for the toy industry. For every seemingly positive story about Hamley’s and other retailers ditching the gender distinction of “girl toy” and “boy toy” aisles another counter-outrage whips up about sexist categorisation in Subway kids’ meal bags (action figures for boys, pretty wristbands for girls) or the Early Learning Centre promoting regressive play stereotypes (boys as rescuing knights, girls the rescued princesses).

In an age of alternative facts and media sensationalism it is difficult to divine actual “outrage” from manufactured versions. For every lobbying group like “Let Toys Be Toys” there is plenty of anecdotal evidence from parents who simply don’t see the issue or feel it is one to get animated about.

As a result, it is not difficult to feel sympathy for toy companies who are dammed if they do and dammed if they don’t – particularly with historical intellectual properties. When Hasbro bought out the first wave of Stars Wars toys from “The Force Awakens” movie it was hit by a #WheresRey Twitter campaign (protesting the seeming absence of a leading female character from the movie in the toy line). Given levels of hype and movie secrecy issues, not to mention toy production lead times, it’s reasonable to assume licensee toymakers may not have full access to storylines or cannot predict with absolute certainty which characters will be popular and have a life in the toy market.

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27 January 2017

10 key takeaways from Mirum Opus

MiriumIn January 2017, Mirum pledged to demystify innovation with eight talks from industry heavyweights and a start-up trail blazers. The result was Mirum Opus, an event designed to debunk and rebuild our understanding of Innovation. A tall order when even the word itself has become convoluted.

Nevertheless, there are still people who know what truly new ideas look like and here are 10 key takeaways:

“Before the tsunami there are tectonic shifts”

“Look for the warning signs and react to them,” was the advice of Adobe’s Vijayanta Gupta. He identified two main trends with critical mass, IOT and AI, the knowledge and infrastructure exists now comes the application. Vijayanta spoke of Moore’s Law and its downward price curve which he thinks it will rapidly increase the creative use of said tech for a tsunami of change

Deliver micro moments

Micro moments are sequences of unpredictable but intent driven actions. Consumers aren’t immersing themselves with brands for long periods of time. They want immediate results delivered in bite size chunks. This doesn’t just mean that marketing communications need to be succinct. It means that people are online more than ever before but in short bursts, so the experience of a brand needs to be tailored to this behaviour.

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22 November 2016

Business Etiquette Across the Globe: How to Navigate the Culture Shock

Culture shocks from around the world

The world continues to become a smaller place as digital technologies transcend oceans and dissolve boarders, allowing corporations to forge international relationships and partnerships that would otherwise go unformed.

These modern-day miracles do not come without their complications, however, as business etiquette can greatly differ from region to region. Culture shocks from around the world can often lead to potential business associates embarrassing themselves and outright botching deals.

These mistakes come in many forms, whether it be an improper greeting, social media conundrums, or inadvertently disrespectful marketing materials; this makes it vitally important to have a keen understanding and perception of local business customs.

In an effort to help business leaders avoid succumbing to cultural formality mishaps, here are some of the most prominent business culture shocks from around the world.

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18 November 2016

Brand innovation of the Week: Coca-Cola ‘Selfie Bottle’ (Israel)

Fancy taking a snap of yourself glugging down your favourite beverage? Well, thanks to Coca-Cola Israel, it’s now possible thanks to the launch of the ‘world’s first selfie bottle’ which comes fully equipped with a selfie-taking camera at the base of the bottle.

The 0.5L bottle is geared up to take a snap when it senses a 70 degree tilt, with the resulting selfies shared on Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram via a dedicated hashtag.

In a concept created by innovation agency Gefen Team, the tech was used as part of the Coca-Cola Summer Love campaign – Israel’s biggest outdoor brand event.

Coca cola

30 August 2016

Apple's brand portfolio is the world’s most valuable

Apple

Apple has held on to its title as the world’s most valuable brand portfolio, with an estimated worth of almost $146bn*, according to the latest Brand Finance Portfolio 100, which evaluates brands to determine which are the most powerful and valuable by country and by industry.

Alphabet (Google’s parent company) takes second place on the table with a portfolio value of $99bn, followed by Samsung Group ($83bn), Wal-Mart Stores ($78bn) and Microsoft Corp ($74bn).

Also featuring in the top 10 are Amazon.com in sixth place with a value of $70bn, followed by Nestle SA ($67bn) and Verizon Communications ($63bn). At&T ($60bn) and Toyota Motor Corp ($55bn) round out the top 10.

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23 August 2016

3 different things brands can learn from Pokemon Go

Pokemon go

When Satochi Tajiri first created the Pokemon concept in 1995, and released the first two Gameboy video games (red and green) a year later, he would never have envisioned middle-aged bureaucrats running round London (and every other city in the world) trying to catch them all just 20 years later.

Pokemon Go is rapidly becoming the most successful mobile app of all time. It took just 13 hours to hit the top of the US sales charts, and after a global frenzy of anticipation cut that to just 3 hours for the German charts. It’s lucrative too, topping $2 million of revenue per day in the US market, according to Yahoo.

There are lots brands can learn from Pokemon Go, but here are some you may not have considered…

Lesson 1: Reality trumps quality every time

Remember when reality TV came on the scene? “Proper” TV people bashed it, claiming a lack of production values, wit, etc. But people lapped it up anyway.

Why? Because it broke free of the studio and embraced the rough and ready unpredictability of the real world. It was closer to us and, therefore, more relevant. Pokemon Go has done the same.

In spite of its success, it’s considered a poor game by any objective measure. A Guardian review summarised it as “not a good game, but a great experience”.

The fact that it exists in the world around us, not just on our screens, means, like reality TV, that quality doesn’t matter. Take your campaigns out of their media spaces and into the world around them, and the same will apply for you.

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05 August 2016

Ad of the Week: McCann Montevideo ‘I CANN Eau de Créativité’ (Uruguay)

Icann 1

To celebrate the 70th anniversary of McCann Montevideo, the agency has launched a limited-edition perfume called ‘I CANN Eau de Créativité’ that symbolises its commitment to creativity.

With the purpose of making it a medium to boost creativity, the idea was developed based on the idea that McCann’s role is to encourage creativity among clients and in their brand development, therefore it wanted to create a product that would boost creativity among its own people.

The thinking behind the name ‘I CANN’ emphasises that everybody can develop and express the power of their own creativity, and a campaign to promote it has been starred by agency staff.

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11 July 2016

Why brands can’t afford to ignore #Unstereotype

If brands want their advertising and marketing communications to resonate with women, then they have to understand that using simplistic one-dimensional stereotypes in their messaging no longer works.

Arguably, the statistic prompting the biggest reaction at this year’s Cannes Lions Festival was revealed by Unilever’s Keith Weed. During his presentation on why and how the FMCG giant is radically changing its female-focused advertising strategy, he announced that 40% of women do not identify with the images of them portrayed by most ads, while just 3% of Unilever’s ads feature women in leadership roles and 1% show women being funny.

As Weed disclosed more and more of the findings, a vivid picture emerged of the huge gap between how female identity is evolving and the version presented by advertising. Credit was widely given to Unilever for committing to develop more culturally relevant and resonant work to combat gender stereotyping and more accurately reflect society.

However, Weed was also keen to point out that the change in tack wasn’t just driven by altruism, but was firmly underpinned by a commercial imperative. The research not only uncovered how female identity is evolving at break-neck speed, but also highlighted the opportunity for brands to do something about it and reap the reward.

Based on work Unilever carried out with The Futures Company to identify the evolving nature of female identity, Unilever have galvanized behind their goal to create more communications which show a progressive vision of female identity, by challenging themselves on three key dimensions of how women are represented: through their role, personality and appearance.

Continue reading "Why brands can’t afford to ignore #Unstereotype" »

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  • Right Brain, Left Brain sums up the dichotomy of a media business that’s constantly battling with the challenge of delivering a profit and discovering new ways to communicate to consumers. The Cream editorial team combined with a dream team of industry pioneers from around the world share their expert opinions.

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