Awesome digital, social, marketing inspiration. Play in Google’s Sandbox.

There was a time when a writer and art director sat in a room, brain-stomred a bunch of ideas on a product or service for a client. They would cull the ideas down into a few rock star comps, share them to the team in the agency and then make a formal presentation to the client.


After some back and forth and ultimatley a sign-off the campaign would be implemented. TV spot, radio, billboard, maybe a print ad or transit signage. 

Are those days still here? Are those practices still relevant?

I say. You bet they are.

And those who are seeking that pure strong concept must not let go. The digital, social, marketing tools we have today – are just that – they are further tools in the toolbox, but the principals still apply.

So where does one find great creative work in the digital age? Go play around and get your hands dirty in the creative sandbox.


A showcase of marketing campaigns that blend creative genius with digital innovation. See cool stuff. Learn how it was done. Vote on your favorites.

Remember the great VW ads ove the years?  

Check this out


The critical importance of understanding #HigherEd touch-points.

Many of us are working in a more nimble manner and we have become more flexible at such a finite level and are finding new information and absorbing it, discounting it, responding to it or embracing it at an alarming rate. That is just the way ‘things’ are today; technology, communications, mobility, data democracy, cloud computing and the entire connected nature of all of us.

As we each are pulled, pushed or are doing some of the pulling and pushing of information we are still human beings. We think, we feel, we emote, we grow, we change, and because of this fact, the way in which we consume information may have evolved, but the essence of our pure/true human nature has not.

We still value honesty, authenticity, and the real-world experiences that move us at a deeper level. Basically, we each want real relationships and life experiences that bring us that sense of being alive and having a purpose to our lives.

Adverstising in the 1950’s understood this at the basic level and often tapped into it. However the mode at which we share today has changed.

A recent article on Higher Ed, branding and the landscape going forward hit on some key areas that I urge you to read. Powerful insight and perspectives to consider.…


There are plenty of graphic representations of these TOUCH POINTS – here are a few.

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Amazing graphic of customer experience touchpoints – Chief Marketing Technologist

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If you are a teacher, have taught, are a student or have been a student. EVER. Than please watch this.

Are you a TED talks fan? You may have seen this. Sir Ken Robinson fan? You may have seen this.


If you are doing things the way you have in the past, you may not have even heard of TED or Mr Robinson’s talks on education.

I love future technology and (in some respects) am also frightened by it. Not by it alone, but rather by our inability to adapt and utlize it in a positive growth manner.

Stop doing what worked in the past, including education, it’s not working. 

“Some people say we need to raise standards…” Oh Really? What a break through! 

The fact is (as shared in this video) education today is based (in great part) still on the form it was developed over a century ago. We were on horses, without telephones. Now we are not. So as everything else has changed, so too must academia from K-12 and Higher Ed as well.

Those that adapt will actually lead, those that don’t – sadly – will fall behind or worse yet be identified (wrongly) as having a disorder. Rather than me going on… see and hear for yourself a great perspective.

Here is the video – ENJOY!

Advertising Spending in 2013 does not look good* (*Except digital, which looks great!)

No surprise here, but the traditional media marketing, communications methods of the past are slowly (and in some respects-swiftly) giving way to the new media tactics of advertising. I (and you) have likely read countless emails, blog posts, articles, surveys and reports on the shift that is moving the way brands market themselves to their customer base, but this latest article really (for me) is a pivitol point in the transition.


Mobile is exlpodiing, hybrid devices (tablet/desktop) are emerging, and probably most importantly the user/consumer (us) – well we are just more comfortable with the technology. All combined, this makes the digital, interactive space very promising.

Promising for users, consumers, brands, and yes marketers. As I said, no surprise here, but see for yourself in this article from The Wall Street Journal, the numbers are impressive.

The article concludes:


… ” As for individual media categories, Zenith predicts that newspaper ad expenditures will sag 8% next year to $22.9 billion while magazine spending will slip 3.3% to $17.3 billion. TV is expected to rise 2.8% to $63.8 billion while Internet ad spending, which includes things such as mobile, social, display and search ads, is expected to jump 18.1% to $36.2 billion. “…

Albert Einstein about importance of keeping SOCIAL in social media-before it even existed..

Once again a quote from the past seems so relevant today.

I have shared before about the 15 minutes of fame that Warhol spoke about may be occuring now with everyone wanting their notariaty on Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Instagram, etc.

So here below I share with you a great quote from Einstein. I can not take credit, and am not certain who to give credit to this compilation of images and words. I recieved it from someone via email, who recieved it from someone else, who recieve it from someone else… and so on.

Basically, one of those emails that just goes viral and gets shared.

I cleaned it up, but the essence of the information remains the same.

Bottom line? Although it is a bit funny, to me – the point is that we need to keep the social in social media and remember that a tweet, like, post, connection, follow are all connected to a thinking, breathing, emoting human being.


This could be a major ‘game changer’ – for mobile, for social, for wi-fi and for you!


Facebook may have just entered a new space… or at least made their footprint a bit more heavy on the digital, mobile and social landscape.

Apparently they are experimenting with Geolocation “check-ins” that will enable a user to access free Wi-Fi.

The massive Facebook user base, plus the mash-up of social, mobile and wireless combined together – can truly shift (once again) the way we all communicate, work, share, live. It is already happening which only adds to the adoption rate of this concept.

You may be aware, there has been a substantial movement to make wi-fi free and available to all and this dates back to 2008.

Threre also has been an massive growth in the quantity of mobile devices that have already changed the way we live.  Add in a dash of the social media growth and we have the recipe for digital disruption of everything. 

Bandwidth still tends to be an issue or at the very least a ‘friction point’ for a positive user experience. 

Equipped with an iPad, I ‘check in’ at a local retailer shop and I’m in.

I was involved in a start-up company that developed a local social network based on the Ning platform and in-turn we launched a local area wireless mesh network based on the Meraki Free The Net concept launched a few years back. It can work and the time might be right.

Facebook/Wi-Fi – Check out the full article at LATIMES.

The THIN-SLICING of Advertising. What you should know. #social #media #mobile #marketing

BUZZ WORD FRENZY. Advertising, marketing, branding, strategy, digital, social, mobile, experiential, word-of-mouth, out-of-home, ppc, crm, cpm. STOP!!!

So what [REALLY] is Integrated Marketing Anyway?

In a way, it is all of the above and more.



We are experiencing something that Television has experienced with it’s viewership. 3 channels became a dozen, a dozen became 50 and 50 became thousands of network and cable channels. So in effect, the pieces of the pie have been sliced so very very, very thin.

Similarly we are now witnessing the thin slicing of advertising. You can call it what you want, but at the end of the day, it is one’s attempt to get another to feel or do something. And now, those of us in the space are seeking the ideal ways in which best to utilize the tools within a given time frame and budget.

Is print really dead? Are banner ads dead? Word-of-mouth can be great when it works, is social media the most cost-effective? What about the consideration of branding vs a true hard sell call-to-action? If you are not considering all of these and more in the process, you are doing a disservice to yourself and your client(s). 

Oh, and then there is the realities of budget and results and client expectations and being honest with the target audience about the true value of the product or service.The list goes on.

I have found that I do more daily professional development now than I ever have. That is to say, I read more, I sit in on webinars, attend lectures, meetings and explore the digital landscape for new ideas and creative attempts. 

The questions (for me) often align with what I believe in – which is a full 360º approach if/when possible.

Keep your ears and eyes to your audience, know what they are needing and wanting and be certain you are placing the solution for them when and where they want and are ready to absorb it. Most important be authentic in your communication or you can get smashed into pieces.

Check out this recent article on display ads – worth the read.



Thanks for the visual goes to:… reference!

Oh Oh. Now what do we do? #highered in the news. But WAIT! This might be a good thing.

I have spoken, blogged and tweeted and posted the incredible pace at which digital disruption is occuring throughout various industries. 

Education and maybe more specifically – Higher ed may be the perfect storm for the next big shift. 

So many articles are being written, numerous start-ups are taking pokes into the space, various top-notch universities are jumping into the mix and the next generation of leaders are looking closely to determine how, where and when this will all shake out.

Once the dust settles, there is one thing for certain, people will continue to learn.

The questions now surround the how, who, when, where, why, what value, how often, what degree and many other issues. 

TIME has just launched a fairly thourough look at the subject. (image attached from article)

I strongly urge anyone interested in the issues surrounding MOOCs, digital disruption in education, to read the piece. Students, Alumni, Faculty, Staff, Board members, Educational leadership, and others will benefit from it. What is an interesting caveat, I am reading the article both in Print form in the Magazing and in digital form on an iPad. This comes at a point when Newsweek just announced they will no longer be publishing a print version.

and – so it goes.

The world is flattening because of technology, the economy is changing because of tech, society is evolving to meet the new demands and when education; be it K-12 or Higher Ed takes to the technology tools available, all those involved will have to shift to the new market demands.

But don’t fret, from this comes new industry, new occupations, new standards, and new processes. 


Step in, get involved and look around, or you will be left in the past.




What you need to know for QR Codes. Generating? Scanning? For marketing? #mobile #social #digital

Generating a QR Code? Scanning a QR Code? Using QRs for marketing purposes?



Many (including me) have been setting them to the side, – ” QRs are ugly” – “they’re a fad” – “I just throw it at the bottom of the page” –  but this perspective may be changing.  I recently have seen a shift toward greater interest and adoption of QRs and wanted to find out about some best practices. In the process, I have gathered a few resources that I thought I would share.

I will start out by saying that QR stands for Quick Response, and considering the global attention deficit disorder we all seem to be developing for content – QRs may make more sense than we are currently giving them credit.

You can create a QR code in various formats, but that can be a good and a bad thing – considering scaling of pixel data can become an issue.  In fact, if there is one definitive science in QR codes it is readability – if your QR code reader can’t read your QR – well then – it ain’t workin’. Pretty simple! I suggest trying a few readers to verify accuracy and readability.  Personally, EPS is always nice to have (even if it is a backup) and/or in addition to a jpg, png or other. Vector = scalability.
When creating a QR code in a pixel based format (other than eps) be certain you have generated your QR code at the size you need.  Keep in mind, the concern here, is that if at any time (now) or in the future, your QR code is re-sized and re-used, quality degradation occurs, and readability could be compromised.
EPS is scalable without this issue.

QR code generators create a series of pixels based on the url. And the more complicated the URL, the more complex the QR graphic appears. Shortening the url with, TinyURL or similar will simplify the design.

Showing a QR code in a proper size is a must, too small just can’t be read… but also be certain there is ample clear/white space around the code, or it will be difficult, if not impossible to scan.

Creative QR codes were inevitable. Since their inception, QR codes look and feel like a bar code and with that designers were inspired to make them more interesting. Considerations are in the mix of this dialogue

If you don’t have time – and just want to know the basics – watch this.

I recently read an article about how we as users and consumers are becoming ever more demanding of the use of our time and with that in mind, QRs will need to deliver some added value to the experience. Simply directly the user to a static web site will not be enough. Be Qreative – sorry – had to.

And here is a link to some (unusual) QRs 


Google’s Mission Revealed, and it is amazing, because they are delivering. #digital

So you use Google every day, you use the word google as a verb. And so it goes.


I was in fact ‘Googling’ recently, and was interested to learn, what is Google’s mission? It seems they are continuing to do everything in the digital space that I can think of, and much more I haven’t even thought about, and likely other areas they are reaching into evey day.

Outside of the virtual – there is also the truly transformational impact the company is having on so many other aspects, such as mapping, google goggles, the self-driven car and others.

So going back to their mission.

Here it is.

Google’s mission is to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.

Read the full details and more on their ABOUT PAGE

The reason why I say Goolge is Delivering, is because the fight for first to market now – is the CLOUD… and while I have been an Apple fan, user, adopter and on the inside of the Apple industry in the late 80s-early 90’s – I am slowly becoming a Google believer when it comes to the Cloud.

Their apps, their usability, their social, their mobility, their reach, their impact, their growth, do I need to say more? They are making it happen and the use of the tools and products continues to grow across the globe.

I am not pleased with Apple’s approach to the cloud.   Mobile Me, iDisk, iCloud, AirDrop, ShareFiles within a computer, Share files locally, DropBox this, public folder here or there. I am so frustrated with the way they have handled the usability factor and to see Google actually making way – is remarkable.


I’ll leave you with this – if you haven’t jumped into Google Drive – check it out. 

Still have all the Apple hardware and use many Apple products – but am a bit sour on their Cloud thinking at the moment.