This is a video that advertising agency Drogra5 did for Guitar Hero. I think Droga’s secret is to come up with awesome ideas that are insanely hard to execute … And then execute them. (Like The Tap Project or The Million Program)
1. Listen to Lupe Fiasco. His lyrics are sick. If Lupe doesn’t inspire you, we are obviously from different generations.
2. Always carry a small notebook and a pen or pencil around with you. That way, if you are struck by an idea, you can quickly write it down.
3. If you’re stuck for an idea, open a dictionary, randomly select a word and then try to formulate ideas incorporating this word. You’d be surprised how well this works. The concept is based on a simple but little known truth: freedom inhibits creativity. There are nothing like restrictions to get you thinking.
4. Define your problem. Grab a sheet of paper, electronic notebook, computer or whatever you use to make notes, and define your problem in detail. You’ll probably find ideas positively spewing out once you’ve done this.
5. If you can’t think, go for a walk. A change of atmosphere is good for you and gentle exercise helps shake up the brain cells. My favourite walk is from my car to the gondola at Whistler.
6. Read as much as you can about everything possible. Books exercise your brain, provide inspiration and fill you with information that allows you to make creative connections easily.
7. Exercise your brain. Brains, like bodies, need exercise to keep fit. If you don’t exercise your brain, it will get flabby and useless. Exercise your brain by talking to smart people and disagreeing with people – arguing can be a terrific way to give your brain cells a workout. If you don’t have any friends, read the Economist.
A month until Christmas eve and I already know what I want. It’s from Europe. And Krups. But no, it’s not a coffee maker. Those of you who know me would realize that I don’t drink coffee. But I do drink beer. Delicious beer.
Ladies and gentlemen, let me introduce you to the Heineken Beertender:
It’s a home refrigeration system and tap for those Heineken mini-kegs. It looks slick and fits perfectly on a kitchen countertop (or my desk at work). You drop in a Heineken mini-keg and you have 5 litres of beery goodness chilled and ready to drink.
I view the Beertender as the iPhone of home bar systems. It’s simple. It’s innovative. It looks pretty. It also makes having a home keg accessible for the everyman. Everyman being me. It’s only available in Europe and the US right now. Who’s up for a road trip to Buffalo?
Apparently a lot of people are addicted to MLS, the website that lets you peruse all the real estate listings. I don’t really get it myself, but I suppose it’s more of a “grown up” yuppie obsession. The same type of people that have recently dumped their dumbphones for smartphones with GPS capabilities.
So here’s an idea: create a widget or iPhone application that marries the MLS listings with GPS. You download it to your phone. You set your preferences (let’s say that you only want to look at houses under $500,000). Then, whenever you come within 100 meters of a listing that matches your preferences, your phone lets you know.
I was watching TV with my family over the weekend and this ad came on. It is a 60 second spot, so pretty long as far as commercials go. When it was over, my sister turned to me and said, “That’s a good commercial.” I agree.
It’s called “Discover Music Again” and it’s for Sirius satellite radio done by BBDO Toronto.
When was the last time you discovered something new?
And it evolved into this rant. Allow me to back up for a bit. I was watching Hockey Night In Canada on Saturday and saw this ad:
It’s funny. It’s good. It introduces yourself to the Society of Uncompromising Men. It allows you to qualify yourself with some old school whiskey drinking values. And manliness. And mustaches. All things that I like. It invites you into the Wiser brotherhood. And then it directs you to this site.
Being the a web native, I visit the site. Unfortunately, it is exactly what I expected. A very slick looking site with no interesting content. All flash and no substance. That’s what pisses me off about these “push to web” initiatives. Your ad was interesting enough that I went to the web site. Now what? What exactly do you want me to do when I get there? Poke around? Okay, I did that. And now I’m bored and I’m leaving.
What really grinds my gears about this is the fact that Wiser has already done the hardest part – getting me to their site through interesting content. The problem is that once I was there, there was no incentive to stick around, to explore further or to come back. There was nothing to forward to my friends.
Wiser’s Whiskey? Time to wise up. (Lame, but I couldn’t help it.)
I’ve written before about Dave Trott. He’s one of those guys who has so much advertising experience that he oozes knowledge. Luckily, the “ooze” is packaged in awesome stories. David was recently touting the benefits of reading George Lois’s (out of print) book The Art of Advertising. Not for the great work, but for the inspirational stories of how they sell ideas.
The article brought up a question that he was gracious enough to answer for me:
Christian: What’s the most recent “crazy” thing that you’ve done to get an idea sold through?
Dave: We won a pitch with an idea I got out of that George Lois book. We were pitching for a newspaper account at 9:00am Monday morning. So Sunday night at 11pm we got a copy of Monday’s paper. We wrote the script overnight, from the stories in the paper. We shot it 7:00am Monday morning. And at the pitch we were able to play a commercial based on what was in the paper that had just gone on the newstands. We won the pitch, so the book works.
I can’t wait for the next pitch that I get to work on, so we can try something impossible, impactful and awesome.