Here is a thought starter: If you still rely on * (as this mobile provider does) in your thinking or in the advertising of your solutions, your solution is to complicated.
Now obviously that is not always the case, but it does serve as a way to look at what you are offering. And how you are communicating your offer.
Static/passive media like print and tv used to allow advertisers some lag time between what your offer (in terms of what you offered and how you communicated it) and when the offer was acted upon.
The ever closing gap between input and outcome asks for ever greater streamlining of the purchase process and a greater level of trust between buyer and seller.
But the good side is that every * offers a chance to create something of meaning, something that meets a need in a delightful way (that does not mean you need to add technology to the mix, just start with some observation and buyer point of view empathy and take it from there).
It must make some sense somewhere in the research the agency did, right? Somewhere someone has data that clearly shows that people, when walking around airports, suspend their sense of national, racial and personal pride.
That people walking around airports are happy to be greeted with stereotypical and borderline racist manners as this is all part of the holiday/air travel experience and thus it is perfectly normal to reflect this in the communication.
There is a huge difference between understanding the cultural perspective to resonate with an audience and playing up to stereotypes. Unfortunately the dividing line is thin and often easily crossed.
As seen at Frankfurt Airport. Books that help you learn a foreign language by turning the learning into a “Who-done-it” novel. Best bit of gamification I’ve come across in a long time.
Yes new tools (slowly) change cultural practices of people. Yes we should be aware of the new. No, we should not jump on all bandwagons that come along.
In times of increasing technological development, decreasing time to explore its uses and potential, and evergrowing fear by people (both in business and just as citizens) of missing out on the latest trend, we should not forget that looking at what is already in use with a fresh pair of eyes can be just as effective (even more so if all the others are not doing anything with it)…
“Good heavens!” I cried. “Who would associate crime with these dear old homesteads?” “They always fill me with a certain horror. It is my belief, Watson, founded upon my experience, that the lowest and vilest alleys in London do not present a more dreadful record of sin than does the smiling and beautiful countryside.”
“But the reason is very obvious. The pressure of public opinion can do in the town what the law cannot accomplish. There is no lane so vile that the scream of a tortured child, or the thud of a drunkard’s blow, does not beget sympathy and indignation among the neighbours, and then the whole machinery of justice is ever so close that a word of complaint can set it going, and there is but a step between the crime and the dock.
But look at these lonely houses, each in its own fields, filled for the most part with poor ignorant folk who know little of the law. Think of the deeds of hellish cruelty, the hidden wickedness which may go on, year in, year out, in such places, and none the wiser.”
The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes (1892) Sherlock Holmes in “The Copper Beeches”
A couple of things have been popping up on my radar interesting, or I think interesting, enough to warrant a hypothesis about business, communications, people and politics.
First there is:
This story. An entertainment channel for the conservative American.
What makes them interesting is the fact they seem to be focused on spreading content, the way the audience wants it (bypassing possible censorship) and they get that entertainment is still the biggest gateway towards culture shaping, because it allows them to say more under a veil of deceptive winking and smiling..
Of course the larger interesting question is the robustness of the hunger for segregrated media (loaded term perhaps, but BET did make billionairs out of the owners) that is still so strong in the USA (perhaps anglo/american cultural sphere in total). It seems something the vast majority of 2.0 land is not to keen on looking in to.
Seems like a action guided by the State Department more than some internal mantra. Now if Google start doing stuff like this in countries like USA to give a voice to police brutality and other stuff, I will eat my words.
But they won’t..This flip flop picking of sides all the time is what politicians and celebs do. And it is gonna cost Google at some point. Net neutrality does not mean that the net is a-political.
On the contrary. Just like the web is one massive confession, it is also one massive vote based on values.
Google does Data, not social and all the human stuff that comes with it. They should not start now, or their Switzerland position (we just create good search results) is done and then all gloves will come off.
Things are gonna get interesting now that the business of social/and co-creation is demanding a show of (political) colour, which leads to the hypothesis about business, communications and politics for the coming decade:
Increased segregation under the veil of curation based on preference. Which will only be overcome by fooling people.
We are going to have to start bullshitting (again), to get passed the bullshit, if we want to get things done.
Amongst the many things identified by Diamond, again we see the use of wrong analogies that frame our actions and perceptions of success, or lack thereof. The fact the talk is four years old, yet not dated, adds to its urgency, to me at least.
Howerever you like your tea, this talk should touch some of your interests/concerns. Again, it runs a bit long, but contains enough gems to keep you watching..
Trend: Methaphors were/are/will be the triggers that enable primed systems/segments/societies to collectively move at an accelerated pace in the direction they were moving already unconciously.
The above talk with George Soros also bring to light something obvious, yet very interesting. The fact that false positive stories (ineffective stories – who for whatever reason, be it through distribution, interpretation take on different meaning- measured against the goal the story was suppose the help pave action and thinking) can actually succeeded, and become triggers for unintented action.
Worse even is the fact that false positive stories, also increase ‘false negative’ stories. Stories that showed promise of becoming internalized in the intended manner, but who get ignored, or stopped, due to the force of action the more succesfull false positives take up.
Am even inclined to call the end of marketing and advertising that does. Meta strategy (getting the thought right, that sparked a thousand thoughts that drive actions to flow from them) is (again, nothing new to it, really) where it will be at, in an world of oversupply of solutions, initiatives and people wanting to act (as seen in the rise of impact philanthropy.
Even recent event is Tunisia are an example of how trigger stories (in this case combined) can become an infrastructure for an primed system to break out..combine documents, with food prices, faulty self amplifiyng stories that the system wants to hear and decades old year systems breaks.
Though just to play devil’s advocate to all this abstraction, the Ipad Youtube and Twitter seem like the first in what is likely to be very disprutive inverse antropomorphic tools.
Tools (though the name tool does not quite fit as a tool implies a preset function, perhaps object comes closer) that create infrastructures out of thoughts so that primed systems can achieve enough leverage to break through the robustness of said system. Be it a business like Flipboard or a social change as discribed above.
Sidenote: This could be the achilles heel of Facebook. It is to defined, to controlled, to arrogantly unaware of its coming demise, to survive. It can’t be rewritten so it will stop being read at some point?
The issue of control (and implicit responsability for how it is used ), which these tools still (need to) have will be an interesting point of future friction between users and provider, just as humans struggle with their own mortality and morality, whether it be man against Maker or man against nature.
The increasing power of frames is something I touched upon here a bit, but did not push the thought to its most logical concuslusion: becoming compost. At ease with being disbanded when it has served own needs, so it can become the catalyst for more, different ideas. This seems like the minimum on which we must judge the potential of an idea, both for good and bad outcomes.
Spotting actual and mood movement of people so that false negative stories don’t die and false postive frames don’t get a chance in ever anger primed societal systems is going to be the next thing for strategist, and researchers, because in our urge for ever faster and ever tranparenter collective actions, time for thought is decreasing.
All in all the above is nowhere near a finished thought..just wanted it written to get back to as it seems fertile ground for thought as we enter a period of volitile complex (not complicated) times with a growing need for resilience and patience .
People want more involvement. No. They demand it. Remember though what you corporate/government partners are thinking: rights granted, will become obligations enforced.
So while we might now with great energy jump into home education, civil crime patrols, people supermarkets and other initiatives, there may come a day when we will yearn for times we changed stuff just by ballot boxes, our wallets, taxes and a few good men.
Not saying back in the day was picture perfect, just saying lemmings act collectively as well.