Exploring the future of brands

Author: shannonob90

Tostitos // Party Safe Bag

Tostitos have launched limited-edition “Party Safe” bags that act as drink-driving deterrent to become the first bag of chips that gets you home safe after the super bowl. It contains a sensor calibrated to detect small traces of alcohol on a person’s breath, so that when any trace of alcohol is detected, the LEDs turn red and form a steering wheel to alert you to give up the keys and not drive home. That red-alert also reveals a unique Uber code along with a “Don’t drink and drive” message. Created by the guys at Goodby Silverstein & Partners.


SOURCE: Digital Buzz Blog

Consumer Hack // The Shift of Responsibility

The moment comes, your first opportunity to show your smarts around behaviour change, but like a deer in the headlights, heart pumping, dry mouth, you scramble to remember that article you read about optimism bias…just like that, your moment has passed.

Vowing never to let anyone suffer the same fate as I did, I’ve put together a series of consumer hacks aimed at giving you a quick boost of 10 iQ points in any client meeting.

Consumer Hack No. 4: Authority – Our behaviour is susceptible to drastic change when influenced by an authoritative figure.

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Good Reads // Honda & Visa Mobile Payments

Japanese multinational Honda – in partnership with Visa, Gilbarco Veeder-Root and IPS Group – has unveiled a proof of concept for in-vehicle payments at CES 2017.

Through smartphone integrations, Honda has been able to demonstrate how in-vehicle payments could work in the future to pay for services such as petrol and public parking.

Honda In-vehicle Payments
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Amazon // Dash Button’s

Amazon has introduced virtual dash buttons in an attempt to make it even easier for people to order products through its app and website.

The physical version of the buttons – which are small gadgets that enable one-click reordering of products – have been available to the Amazon Prime subscribing general public since July 2015. Now, Prime members will be able to enjoy the same one-click ordering but directly from their devices.

Amazon Dash
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Good Reads // How do Gen Z really use their mobile?

Until recently, I felt I had a good grip on what was happening with Gen Z…this is evidence that conversation drives far greater insight than data alone.

“Think about your daily morning routine. It probably involves getting out of bed, having breakfast, brushing your teeth and then getting on with your day.

But for many teens none of this happens before one important task: sending a KTS to your streak list.

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Barclaycard // Contactless Beer Tap

Sometimes the best ideas are those that seem so obvious, you wonder why they haven’t been done before. Barclaycard’s first contactless, self-serve beer pump falls into this category.

Using a play on the “Pay @ Pump” options offered at petrol stations, the prototype “Pay @ Pump” beer pump has been designed to reduce queues at the bar on a night out. You go to the pump, scan any contactless card and place a glass under the pump.

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My Thoughts // Gatebox

It’s a weird and interesting world we live in…Gatebox has created a virtual home robot with personality – Reminds me of the movie ‘Her‘.

‘Personality’ in AI bots is an interesting topic. At a time when the world is discussing the ethical questions around the power of algorithmically determined information – ‘filter bubble‘, we also have algorithms shaping the way we are speaking to each other.

Just think, if we engaged with our home bot as much as this video suggests, don’t you think it would impact the way we speak to real people? Food for thought.

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Good Reads // Building Jarvis

Mark Zuckerberg gave the following recount of his project to build a simple AI to run his home.

“My personal challenge for 2016 was to build a simple AI to run my home — like Jarvis in Iron Man.
My goal was to learn about the state of artificial intelligence — where we’re further along than people realize and where we’re still a long ways off. These challenges always lead me to learn more than I expected, and this one also gave me a better sense of all the internal technology Facebook engineers get to use, as well as a thorough overview of home automation.”

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Inspiration // Introducing Amazon Go

Imagine grocery shopping without the lines. Sounds good, right? Well, Amazon have made this a reality.

Amazon Go is a brick and mortar grocery store that allows you to walk in, pick up your groceries, and walk out…no checkout required. It will take Amazon a while to roll these stores out, but once they do, it will be hard for other grocers to compete.

This is a great example of experience design. If this way of thinking excites you, I highly recommend you read this article.


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My Thoughts // Are advertisers doing it all wrong?

Advertising agencies get paid a lot of money to change the behaviour of their clients consumers – “buy more stuff”.

From watching the video below, I urge you to question – “how much do I understand about people’s motivations?”.

If you’d like to learn more, here’s a start.

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Consumer Hack // The Cause of Difficult Decisions

The moment comes, your first opportunity to show your smarts around behaviour change, but like a deer in the headlights, heart pumping, dry mouth, you scramble to remember that article you read about optimism bias…just like that, your moment has passed.

Vowing never to let anyone suffer the same fate as I did, I’ve put together a series of consumer hacks aimed at giving you a quick boost of 10 iQ points in any client meeting.

Consumer Hack No. 3: Cognitive dissonance – We fight to create consistencies between our beliefs, attitudes and behaviours.

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Consumer Hack // Experiencing vs. Remembering

The moment comes, your first opportunity to show your smarts around behaviour change, but like a deer in the headlights, heart pumping, dry mouth, you scramble to remember that article you read about optimism bias…just like that, your moment has passed.

Vowing never to let anyone suffer the same fate as I did, I’ve put together a series of consumer hacks aimed at giving you a quick boost of 10 iQ points in any client meeting.

Consumer Hack No. 2: Experiencing vs. Remembering – What we experience is not always what we remember.


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Vodafone // Fakka

“Fakka” means ‘small change’ in Arabic. Small change is a particular problem for consumers and retailers alike in Egypt. Very often small retailers such as pharmacies, vegetable stores or corner shops do not have a ready supply of small change for their customers. Instead they will hand back items such as a single aspirin, a vegetable or sweets as an alternative. To a tourist visiting Egypt this might seem like an ingenious method for overcoming the problem. To an Egyptian living with the situation day in day out, year in year out, the items instead of small change solution, is practically useless, to the point of being frustrating.

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My Thoughts // A Different Perspective on Personalisation

PERSONALISATION, a word that has taken a Jordan-like catapult to superstardom in the marketing world since the digital age dawned upon us. I hear it so often in adland that we may as well add it as a fifth ‘P’ in McCarthy’s traditional view of marketing – but, has anyone stopped to think about the impact it’s having?

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MIT MediaLabs // Click and Connect

Imagine a world where you can control everything from a single device. Then watch this video…

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Cronetto // Commitment Rings


Probably the worst thing about streaming services, is when your partner watches the latest episode on Netflix while you’re on a night out, or has friends over and binge watches your favourite series…

Well, Cornetto have a solution! RFID powered Commitment Rings.

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The Mill // Blackbird

“The Cannes Lions “Innovation” category was hotly contested again in 2016, but this was perhaps the most amazing piece, not from just it’s core idea or use of technology, but by how it will change the entire film production industry for car brands.

Meet the Mill’s “Blackbird” which sets out to transform the way automotive advertising is made – it’s a car rig that can be shot at any time, in any location, without the need to rely on a physical car. Check out the film above, it’s had over 2 million views in just a few days!”

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Good Reads // The Consequences of Cord-Cutting

“Just because Netflix had essentially created this new world of internet TV was no guarantee that it could continue to dominate it. Hulu, a streaming service jointly owned by 21st Century Fox, Disney and NBC Universal, had become more assertive in licensing and developing shows, vying with Netflix for deals. And there was other competition as well: small companies like Vimeo and giants like Amazon, an aggressive buyer of original series. Even the networks, which long considered Netflix an ally, had begun to fight back by developing their own streaming apps. Last fall, Time Warner hinted that it was considering withholding its shows from Netflix and other streaming services for a longer period. John Landgraf, the chief executive of the FX networks—and one of the company’s fiercest critics—told a reporter a few months ago, “I look at Netflix as a company that’s trying to take over the world.”

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Good Reads // Cannes Festival of Complexity

“There’s one simple lesson from Cannes this year: We’re making marketing harder than it really is.

You can’t miss it. Whether you’re browsing the record 43,101 entries, watching a robot draw tweets or slowly but surely extricating yourself from a sales pitch.

This is not a festival of creativity. It’s a festival of complexity.

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Good Reads // Translating Brands Into Behaviours

“How can brands shift their customer relationships from occasional purchase to something deeper? The move from product-centric to a more connected exchange starts with one thing— interrogating a brand’s purpose, in terms of its role in people’s lives and ultimately in culture.

Nir Eyal’s Hooked Loop, under discussion in this FutureVision issue, pushes brand thinking into behaviour, and unpicks the triggers, actions, rewards, and investment needed to form habits around a product or service. It leads brands to ask: given our purpose, what habits do we have licence to be part of?

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Beats by Dre // Straight Outta

Everyone is straight outta somewhere right? So Beats by Dre tapped into that passion and pride with a simple, yet hugely powerful campaign to promote the movie “Straight Outta Compton” that anyone put their own city on the Straight Outta logo, and share it with the world. Here’s the case study video!

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Consumer Hack // Misattribution of Arousal

The moment comes, your first opportunity to show your smarts around behaviour change, but like a deer in the headlights, heart pumping, dry mouth, you scramble to remember that article you read about optimism bias…just like that your moment has passed.

Vowing never to let anyone suffer the same fate, I’ve put together a series of consumer hacks aimed at giving you a quick boost of 10 iQ points in any client meeting.

Consumer Hack No. 1: Misattribution of Arousal – We are often mistaken about how our preferences are formed.


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Volkswagen // The Human Crossing

In the UAE, most drivers ignore zebra crossings on a daily basis. So it’s no surprise that 20% of all road accidents in the United Arab Emirates involve pedestrians, often resulting in fatalities. So Volkswagen created “The Human Crossing” to make our roads a little more human (and safe), reminding drivers that pedestrians aren’t invisible and are human beings.

Children were given Volkswagen RFID tags, which synced their names to digital billboards which activated as they cross the road in key locations, making them more visible and creating human connections in the attempt to avoid more pedestrian accidents.

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Ecko Unltd // Still Free

“Marc Ecko came to Droga5 in 2006 for help reinforcing his brand’s graffiti heritage and street cred after several years of becoming increasingly mainstream. So Droga5 identified the most outrageous place a graffiti artist could tag—Air Force One—and staged a video of a group of artists doing just that.

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Samsung // Virtual Bedtime Stories

Virtual reality still has a lot to prove. And today it takes a big step toward demonstrating its potential everyday usefulness with a cool Samsung campaign that simulates one of the most intimate family traditions—the parent-child bedtime story.

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Myer & Ebay // Virtual Reality Department Store

Myer and eBay have teamed up to launch what they are claiming is the worlds first virtual reality department store.

The pair say that it offers a ‘glimpse’ into the future shopping.

Shoppers can browse more than 12,500 Myer products and add them to their virtual shopping cart.

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Burger King // Facebook Messenger Bot

“Here is a quick demo of the upcoming Burger King Facebook Messenger Bot, which in all it’s glory will allow you to order on the fly without ever having to talk to a human. Just hit the bot up, tell it what you want, and it will guide you through an instant ordering process, before asking you what store you want it from, and processing the request.

I’d have loved to see the payment flow, but the work in progress demo stops just short of diving into payments… So here comes the rush of AI Bots to market, not that this one is driven by an AI engine, more so predicted-paths, so it’s more a dumb-bot so to speak, but it will take your order!”

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Good Reads // What Adland Can Learn From Other Creative Industries

Michelle Gilson, planning director at adam&eveDDB, shares five commandments for coming up with creative ideas from the worlds of art, film, fashion and startups

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Toyota // Land Cruiser Emergency Network

One of the many challenges of driving through Australia’s outback is no access to communication. Most of Australia’s red centre doesn’t have any mobile phone signal coverage – an area larger than the European Union.

In the event of an emergency, the isolation can prove deadly in some of the harshest conditions in the world.

But this may be about to change, thanks to a novel idea conceived by ad agency Saatchi & Saatchi for long-standing client Toyota.

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Mila // The Live Fish Pack

“Fresh Fish? Maybe it’s not… Just because its on ice doesn’t mean its fresh, and Mila a leading FMCG company in Poland wanted to show that their latest technology actually makes their fish as fresh as the moment you catch it, even after being frozen.

So, they created “The Live Fish Pack” experiment, where they staged a supermarket activation in the freezer section, packing their boxes with animatronics to show just how fresh their fish are! Enjoy. Created by the crew at Y&R Poland.”

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Tesco // Automatic Shopping

“Tesco became the first British retailer to sign up to ‘If This Then That’ last week, allowing technically-minded customers to set up automatic grocery orders on

The way ‘If This Then That’ works is by connecting separate platforms, such as a user’s account with and their Nike+ running app. An action on one account can automatically trigger a reaction on the other.As an example, the service lets customers order burgers from when the weather’s sunny, reward themselves with a beer order if they’ve completed a run, or schedule a weekly order of milk.

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VW // Instant Test Drive

Automotive brand launches on-demand test drive service in Sweden

To make it easier for people to book a test drive, Volkswagen in Sweden has introduced a service that brings its cars directly to potential car buyers.

To book, customers need to visit The Instant Test Drive mobile website, select the model they would like to test, set their pickup location and fill in their details. The closest dealership that has the chosen car is then notified about the request.

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Good Reads // The remarkable rise of eSports

“Companies and media agencies have long appreciated the value of advertising to the gaming community, but a recent evolution has opened a new world of opportunity to brands.

Although in-game advertising has rapidly grown to become a $7 billion industry worldwide, the smarter money for brands is on out of game sponsorship eSports, tapping into a thriving and highly-engaged community of 120 million fans.

Electronic sports, commonly known as eSports, are competitive tournaments for professional video gamers – and it’s serious business.

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Good Reads // Computerised Conversation

Customer communications / As we reported in our AI customer service trend, IT research firm Gartner estimates that by 2020, customers will manage 85% of their relationships with businesses without any human interaction. But regardless of whether we’ll get human interaction, we’ll still want it. NICE Systems’ Global Customer Experience Survey found that 88% of people would pick speaking to a representative on the phone as their first choice. So, where does that leave us? Robots with the power to converse like humans.

‘Human language is the new UI [user interface] layer,’ Microsoft’s chief executive Satya Nadella said at the Build conference, according to the Financial Times. ‘Bots are the new apps. Digital assistants are like … the new browsers, and intelligence is infused into all your interactions.’ These humanised bots will provide brands with a way to communicate with their customers in a more authentic and natural way.

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Taco Bell // Taco Bot

“Introducing the world’s first TacoBot, created by your friends at Taco Bell. If you use the group messenger app Slack, and millions of people around the world do, you’ll now be able to order Taco Bell in just seconds. So, what are you waiting for. Start your bot order!

So how does it work? It’s simple. Tacobot is like a new friend and should be treated as such upon a quick install inside slack. Then, just start asking it questions about our menu, see how it’s feeling or find out what its favourite movie is right now, just about anything… From there connect your account, choose your pickup location and order up your favorite Taco Bell item ready for when you walk in. Taco Bell’s Tacobot is ready to serve!”


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Pechat // Talking Teddies

Button-shaped parenting tool makes soft toys speak

“A new device promises to bring children’s most beloved toys to life. Pechat is a button-shaped speaker that can be attached to a soft toy and connects to a parent’s smartphone via Bluetooth. An accompanying app allows the user to make their child’s teddy appear to ‘talk’.

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Gatorade // Sweat Tech

Drinks brand launches smart technology to improve athlete performance.

No longer just a sports drink brand, Gatorade is developing a bottle cap fitted with a microchip and a smart sweat patch.

The two objects are part of the brand’s Fuel Lab initiative, and work together to analyse an athlete’s hydration levels and inform them when and how much they should drink.

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Google // Destinations

“There are a ridiculous number of apps and websites that will help you plan and book a vacation. There are so many, in fact, that choosing which to use can be overwhelming. Search behemoth Google would like to change that.

Google launched “Destinations” on Wednesday to provide all the travel information a person might want, neatly curated, organized and bundled with booking options.

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Jeep // Grand Land

“Jeep Australia has launched a competition where the grand prize is huge plot of rural Aussie turf. To enter a prize draw for the land, which is worth AU$100,000 (US$75,650), people just need to test drive a Jeep Grand Cherokee.

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Good Reads // Unifying the Journey

“Marketers have long embraced the concept of creating seamless and rewarding brand experiences along the consumer journey. The challenge is that the complexities of coordinating the multitude of retailer and media touchpoints are extremely difficult.

Traditionally, the process has been made even more difficult by the fact that most organisations are split between sales and media teams, each with different goals, approaches and targets.

But digital changes everything and three key forces are driving both the need and the ability to combine these approaches:

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Coke // Cardboard Virtual Reality

“Coca-Cola is entering into the virtual reality game, not with immersive videos of that sweet bubbly brown soda, but with cardboard VR goggles.

The cardboard packaging of 12-packs of Coke products can be folded into VR goggles that hold your smartphone, similar to how Google Cardboard works. Coca-Cola details exactly how to make the goggles in this video:

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Audi // Catch the Unseen

“Today we tend to take the same pictures of the same objects from the same places.

Audi wanted to challenge this and at the same time promote quattro, their powerful four-wheel drive.That’s why they created Catch the Unseen. A first of its kind photo competition where people were challenged to take the photo furthest away from any other photo.

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McDonalds // Brrrillboards

A big push over the past year for advertisers has been to create things that offer people a real benefit – give them a reason to pay attention to your brand.


McDonalds in Canada have used their ‘Brrrillboards’ to create a connection between the snow fields and their coffee, by offering them a snow report in the form of cream on a coffee. By doing this McDonalds are giving snow goers a reason to pay attention to their brand on a daily basis. Studies have shown that this type of advertising encourages visual attention and emotional engagement towards a brand.

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WWF // Animals Not Found

“To help save and protect the more than 100 endangered species of Russia, the World Wildlife Foundation (WWF) Russia continually builds awareness of their plight. To help this effort, we partnered with social networking site Odnoklassniki, one of the country’s most highly trafficked websites, to create “Rare Page,” a campaign that paired endangered species with another dying breed: 404 “Page Not Found” error messages.

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Good Reads // How to Build Products That Are 10x Better Than the Competition

“Elon Musk’s companies are making a ruckus in the automotive, aerospace, oil, and utility industries.

How were they able to disrupt so many industries that have historically been slow to change and ruled by monopoly?

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Battersea // #LookingForYou

“How much is that doggie on the billboard?

Barley, the pixelated pooch in question, appears to follow shoppers around East London’s Westfield Stratford mall in OgilvyOne’s “Looking for You” campaign, designed to promote pet adoption for Battersea Dogs and Cats Home.

A chip secretly placed in leaflets handed out to shoppers triggers the canine’s capering, enabling him to follow the shoppers from one digital board to the next.

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NIVEA // The Second Skin Project

“This is Nivea’s Nanotechnology Experiment that allows people to feel a human touch from anywhere in the world. It’s also probably Leo Burnett Madrid‘s Cannes entry for 2016! The experiment shows how technology can create a sense of touch between a mother and son living thousands of kilometres apart from each other, delivering a hug, just in time for Christmas.

The nanotechnology emulates human skin, and retains electrical impulses, to detect and transfer heat, movement, pressure and other “senses” that one might feel through the skin. And while the VR project does well to connect the mother and son, the video shows it better (no spoilers!). Enjoy.


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Microsoft //Re-imagining NFL Through HoloLens

“So this is the future of Football, with Microsoft re-imagining the future of the game, where NFL fans can get closer to their favorite teams and players than ever before, and control the action across multiple screens, on multiple surfaces, with an immersive mixed-reality experience that the upcoming HoloLens Headset will provide. Pretty cool right? Developer kits come out in Q1 2016…”

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Good Reads // Is the Personalization of the Web Making Us Dumber?

“As a Mashable reader, you’re probably well-aware that Facebook’s News Feed and Google’s search results adjust based on your behavior and demonstrated preferences. But are these and the web’s other algorithms making us collectively uninformed as a society? That’s the argument that Eli Pariser, the former executive director of, made in a TED talk on Thursday in Long Beach, California.

Pariser started his talk by noting a trend he saw on Facebook. Over time, he said, the conservative friends he had started following to ensure a diverse set of viewpoints (Pariser describes himself as “progressive” politically) gradually started disappearing. As he would soon discover, that was a result of him clicking far more frequently on the links posted by his more liberal friends.


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Theraflu // Temperature Taking OOH

“You don’t feel great, but you’re on your way to work (shopping, taking the kids to school…) anyway. It’s flu season in Poland. Have you caught the flu?

Saatchi & Saatchi/ Interactive Solutions Poland and Saatchi & Saatchi Switzerland joined forces for over-the-counter cold and flu medicine brand, Theraflu, to create the world’s first that detects fever.

Each ad is equipped with a live Thermo-scanner camera, that assesses your body temperature and tells you if you have a fever – one of the main symptoms of flu.

Theraflu Thermoscanner
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Jaguar // “Actual Reality”

“At the “Big Boys Toys” expo in New Zealand, Jaguar took Virtual Reality Experiences to the next level. Introducing “Actual Reality”, a VR experience like no other I’ve ever seen, an experience so real, it might actually just be “real”.

With a custom VR Headset, and built into the “6-Axis” hydraulic platform designed to create realistic movement during the VR experience… And as Jaguar invited people to try the the F-TYPE VR Experience. It was clear, that it was going to be one that turned out to be not-so-virtual. Enjoy!”

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Bentley // Inspirator App

“The Bentley Inspirator is a new luxury design and commissioning experience from Bentley, where your facial reactions to specific app content and beautiful design ques shape and guide your way to a recommended specification, inspired by you, and your interests in life.

It’s a completely different play for such a luxury automotive brand, and hints at new ways to unlock high-end digital experiences where you might otherwise not see them.”

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Good Reads // 10 Most Common Misconceptions About User Experience Design

“When I tell people that I am a user experience designer, I usually get a blank stare. I try to follow it up quickly by saying that I make stuff easy and pleasurable to use. That’s the repeatable one-liner, but it’s a gross oversimplification and isn’t doing me any favors.

The term “user experience” or UX has been getting a lot of play, but many businesses are confused about what it actually is and how crucial it is to their success.

I asked some of the most influential and widely respected practitioners in UX what they consider to be the biggest misperceptions of what we do. The result is a top 10 list to debunk the myths. Read it, learn it, live it.

User experience design is NOT…

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Dulux // Amazing Space

Paint brand Dulux, has created an affordable interior design platform called Amazing Space.

Dulux realised there was a need for affordable interior design advice, as only the wealthy could afford the thousands of dollars to get professional advice, yet everyone wants their place to look good.

The Amazing Space platform differs from other online environments, as it uses your preferences to provide you with a personalised output for your space.

The interesting things about this idea, is that it advances Dulux’s credibility beyond being just a paint brand. They are now part of the entire design and planning process for people’s homes. They did all this by creating additional value for their audience. Simple…right?

Create things people want.

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Record Bank // Get This Car

Belgium based Record bank has found a useful way to use scanable ads, by making the tiresome process of buying a car more streamlined.

It is important to thoroughly analyse new technology before using it for your clients. You need to look at whether it is actually providing the customer with a benefit, or if you are just excited to use your shiny new toy.

This campaign is a great example of applying new technology in a useful way.

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Pepsi Max // Unbelievable Bus Shelter

An oldie, but a goodie.

Back in 2014, Pepsi Max fitted Augmented Reality technology to a bus stop in central London, giving the illusion of a see-through display…what bus patrons saw as they waited for their bus definitely got their attention.

Great use of AR.

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Johnnie Walker // Dear Brother

We have all read about the importance of storytelling in advertising, but it is not often we see an ad that truly captures our attention.

Johnnie Walkers latest ad, “Dear Brother”, takes the viewer on an emotion filled journey that places the brand at the center point of it all.

The ad was created by two students studying at the Film Academy of Baden-Württemberg – Daniel Titz and Dorian Lebherz. Not a bad feat for the two of them!

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Good Reads // 12 Cognitive Biases That Prevent You From Being Rational

“The human brain is capable of 1016 processes per second, which makes it far more powerful than any computer currently in existence. But that doesn’t mean our brains don’t have major limitations. The lowly calculator can do math thousands of times better than we can, and our memories are often less than useless — plus, we’re subject to cognitive biases, those annoying glitches in our thinking that cause us to make questionable decisions and reach erroneous conclusions. Here are a dozen of the most common and pernicious cognitive biases that you need to know about.

Before we start, it’s important to distinguish between cognitive biases and logical fallacies. A logical fallacy is an error in logical argumentation (e.g. ad hominem attacks, slippery slopes, circular arguments, appeal to force, etc.). A cognitive bias, on the other hand, is a genuine deficiency or limitation in our thinking — a flaw in judgment that arises from errors of memory, social attribution, and miscalculations (such as statistical errors or a false sense of probability).

Some social psychologists believe our cognitive biases help us process information more efficiently, especially in dangerous situations. Still, they lead us to make grave mistakes. We may be prone to such errors in judgment, but at least we can be aware of them. Here are some important ones to keep in mind.

Confirmation Bias

The 12 cognitive biases that prevent you from being rational

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SapientNitro // SpeakEmoji

“As a way to round off the year in which emojis took over the world and became Britain’s fastest growing language, SapientNitro is today launching SpeakEmoji to help parents and relatives break through the kids’ smartphone trance by speaking to them in their own language – emoji – and in doing so, make Christmas the meaningful family time it’s supposed to be.

SpeakEmoji translates grown-up speak into cool emoji messages to help adults engage with their festive little ‘digital natives’. If kids won’t come to Christmas, maybe we can take Christmas to the kids.

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Airbnb // Peek Under The Hood

Contagious have done a great job of articulating how the worlds third largest private company, Airbnb, works. It’s a long read, but I highly recommend reading through.

“It’s hard to articulate the atmosphere and spirit of the Airbnb Open 2015, the brand’s annual global conference that attracted 5,000 hosts from 106 countries, writes  Barry Mowszowski, reporting from the event in Paris.

Passionate hosts drawn from countries ranging from New York to New Zealand, descended on Paris for three days of inspiration in November 2015 in a conference designed to further enrich the community of Airbnb.

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Giroptic // Welcome To The 3D World

“French startup Giroptic has raised a $4.5 million round of seed funding to popularize its tech-laden cameras, which create high-definition, 360-degree images.

The company’s 360Cam records immersive stills, time lapse videos and real-time videos. After recording, these are ready for viewing without post-processing on virtual reality headsets, or online through YouTube, Facebook and other platforms that allow users to explore 360-images.

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My Thoughts // The Christmas Superbowl Of 2015

It’s that time of year again. The big C is in full swing. So what does the advertising landscape look like during the 2015 festive season?

To put simply, Christmas has turned into a superbowl-esk promotional period for the world’s largest brands. Budgets are absurd and creative is extremely competitive.

Let’s look at what brands are doing to capture your attention.

John Lewis Christmas Ad - Mog Cat

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UNSW // Acceptance Videos

Personalised application of big data is the future of communications. The latest UNSW campaign encapsulates this thought perfectly.

“Wednesday was an exciting day for students around Australia who had been hopeful of gaining acceptance to University.

While most students received an email letting them know if they were successful, UNSW sent emails containing a personalised video, made just for them.

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Danit Peleg // 3D-Printed Clothing

“CLOTHES AND TECHNOLOGY share a surprisingly rich history. Mechanized textile production helped ignite the Industrial Revolution. Punch cards, which facilitated our interaction with computers for decades, were first developed in the 18th century to control textile looms. Which is to say, the idea that we might someday 3-D print our clothes isn’t nearly as wacky as it sounds.

Danit Peleg is the latest designer to explore the potential. For her graduate project at Shenkar, an art and design school in Israel, she developed a five-piece fashion collection that can be produced entirely with an at-home 3-D printer.

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UNICEF // Tap Project: Go Without Your Phone

“Unicef’s world famous Tap Project is back, this time, in mobile form, with site that donates water to people in need, based on how long you don’t touch your phone for. But I’m kinda left questioning if the interaction messaging is powerful enough?

The sponsor behind this project, Giorgio Armani, will donate the equivalent of one day of clean water to a child in need every time a user in the UNICEF web app goes 10 minutes without touching their phone, up to $75,000 (which seems small for such a seemingly big charity – I was expecting more sponsors!). According to UNICEF, with just one dollar, a child receives water for 40 days.

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My Thoughts // Get In The Head of Your Consumer

Advertisers have faced an incredible struggle since the birth of the industry – What are my consumers thinking?

Over the years, advertisers have attempted to understand their consumer by simply asking them their opinion through research – mainly focus groups, and quantitative research studies.

But guess what….what we say, is not always what we think, or do. Actually, majority of the time it isn’t. Imagine yourself in a room full of 10 other strangers you have never met before. You are asked your personal views on a sensitive topic and the guy next to you has been very vocal about an opposing view. Are you really going to butt in and give your two sense with the potential of starting an argument in front of the research camera? Probably not.

Get in the head of your consumer

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Black Bars // Donate Space On YouTube Videos

“You know those annoying black bars that appear when videos recorded vertically are posted on YouTube… Well, why annoying for most of us, a new initiative for NGO’s who need help promoting themselves, called Donate the Bars now allows people to select an NGO while uploading a video, tagging on the NGO’s logo and message as it publishes to your YouTube channel, helping to give much needed exposure to their cause!

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Kidsafe Australia // Unconventional Oven

“Chef Matt Moran unveiled what looked like another celebrity product launch, but instead was a campaign with a much deeper message.

With more than 5000 children left in cars every year, KidSafe and AAMI set out to prove just how hot the sun makes a parked car, by getting Moran to literally cook a meal in one.

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Good Reads // 7 Unexpected Virtual Reality Use Cases

“The tech world is priming itself for the release of the much anticipated Oculus Rift headset in early 2016, and a number of leading companies such as Samsung, Sony, Google and Microsoft are creating VR based systems but keeping prototypes and release dates close to their chests.

How VR will be used, and the changes that the technology will make to the day-to-day lives of regular people is still a matter of speculation. Gamers are warming up their trigger fingers for a new level of immersive gaming, and the field of entertainment will be transformed by the changes. But use cases in other industries could be just as transformative.

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Pedigree // Feed The Good

“There’s a reason they’re called Man’s Best Friend. Pooches bring out the goodness in the human race, at least that’s the message Pedigree wants to showcase in its latest campaign, ‘Feed The Good’.

The campaign by Val Morgan Outdoor aims to drive awareness and donations to the Mars Petcare charity partner, PetRescue, and does so by a digital interactive activations on two massive screens in Sydney and Melbourne that encourage consumers to make a $2 donation.

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Shyp // Ships Your Goods Straight From eBay

“Just in time for the high holy season of giving and getting packages from far away, on-demand shipping startup Shyp is taking advantage of one of the biggest online outfits in need of delivery for those packages – eBay.

Much like when PayPal first offered a third-party payment system for the the e-commerce site, Shyp hopes to be the third-party shipping provider, with a promise to sellers of no waiting in line at the post office and no assembling and stuffing boxes.

Shyp technology innovation

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Amazon // Future of Drone Delivery

“We’ve seen Amazon Drones… But not with Jeremy Clarkson selling the dream, and to be fair, this is the newer, next gen version from Amazon, with a slightly more futuristic view on just how easy it’s going to be to get something delivered by a drone, straight to your front door! (if you’re game!)

The only problem here… What happens when a teenager wants to play ball with the drone?”

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Google & Star Wars // Choose The Light or Dark Side

“It’s time to choose, Awaken the Force within you and your Google apps will follow your path. The new campaign from Google and Star Wars asks users to #ChooseYourSide… and it’s pretty awesome!

Choose the Light Side or the Dark Side, and then, say on on YouTube for example, the volume control of videos will become light sabers, with accompanying side effects, or on Google Maps, your marker might become an X-Wing Fighter jet. Even your Gmail will reflect background scenes from the film, and Star Wars events will automatically appear in your calendar. Choose Your Side here.”

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Bonds // The Boys

“Bonds is looking to grab men by the “proverbials” by creating a pair of talking testicles in a novel approach to the marketing of men’s underwear.

Instead of focusing directly on the benefits of its underwear, Bonds has illustrated the life and ‘thoughts’ of a pair of balls forced to live in an ill-fitting pair of undies.

Continue reading // A.I. Shopping Experience

“Canadian shoe site uses artificial intelligence to power visual search

Online retailer is using artificial intelligence to help shoppers find their perfect pair of boots.

The Vancouver-based ecommerce brand has partnered with AI experts Sentient Technologies to create the Visual Filter. The service launched on its Canadian site, this week.

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Cirque du Soleil // Virtual Reality Putting You On Stage

VR is expanding in numerous ways. From sporting events to video games to medical use, virtual reality is shaping up to, potentially, be the next big revolution in tech. Even theater companies are looking to embrace it. Based in Montreal, Cirque de Soleil is the largest theatrical production company in the world, employing over 4,000 people globally, and it’s pioneering VR like you’ve never seen it before.

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Airbnb // Hosted Walks

Airbnb’s ‘Hosted Walks’ embodies the concept of understanding an audience and providing value to them at the right time, in the right way.

Great use of technology.

Mini // The YouTube Pre-Roll Race

“Every now and then a great YouTube Pre-Roll pops up, and this one from MINI is pretty cool. It’s called the MINI YouTube Race, and challenges viewers to try and hit the skip button to beat the MINI.

The Pre-Roll visually counts down 3.2.1 in sync with the skip button, before the car blasts across the screen as you try to hit skip before it show the loss! Pretty cool idea. Created by Kinetic Singapore.”

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Good Reads // Thinking Further Than The Future

“What is ‘further future’? Well, it’s like the future…but further. At the moment, experience designers and strategists are focusing on ideas for connected homes and how everything can be automated to give people a seamless experience. The further future is different. It’s something so far beyond the future that it’s almost incomprehensible. Product designers and architects regularly innovate in this space – just take a look at Ferrari’s stunning new spaceship (above), showing an ambition that the design community has had for years.

So, why don’t experience designers get involved in this amazing world?


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Barbie // Imagine The Possibilities

“Barbie Dolls have had a brand image problem the last couple decades and an acute sales problem the last few years. The brand image problem relates to the unrealistic body image that a typical Barbie Doll presents to children. The sales problem relates to relevance. But a new film from Mattel that is part stunt and part ad called “Imagine The Possibilities” looks to change all that.

Have a look.

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Good Reads // The Future Of Driving Technology

Interested in where the future of driving is headed?

Take a look at this article on what the big car manufacturers are experimenting with.

“On a recent WW survey regarding new technologies the drivers expect in the cars of the future, the respondents seemed highly interested in vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technology.

The V2I technology allows connected cars to interact with surrounding elements, like stop lights, buildings, carparks and even humans. For the first time, V2I takes over the V2V technology (vehicle-to-vehicle), that occupied the news headlines since Volvo introduced us to their SARTRE project.

Vehicle to vechile communication
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My Thoughts // How Your News Consumption May Be Changing

Today’s world offers a wealth of news that is forever growing larger every day. With such a vast array of news content being produced, we are seeking the best way to discover tailored news that matters most to us.

Silicon Valley’s tech companies are fighting for the chance to be that solution, with each of them taking a slightly different approach.

How Your News Consumption May Be Changing
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My Thoughts // Television Advertising in the Future

We all watch television, but could the way we consume television programming be changing?

There has been a lot of talk in the media recently about video-on-demand (VOD) service in Australia, with the introduction of Netflix to the market. In this article we are going to look at how VOD services will change the way we consume TV content and what this could mean for advertising.

To explain this change we will look at the following:

  1. What does the modern consumer of TV content look like?
  2. How is the market adapting to the wants of consumers?
  3. What impact does this have on traditional TV advertising?
  4. What can VOD services do for advertising?

Future of TV advertising

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