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blogging thoughts advent calendar: i’m behind the window today December 17, 2007

Posted by nicholas gill in advent, adverblog, blog, marketing, social networks, thought leadership, thoughts, user generated content, web 2.0.


Martina @ Adverblog has taken user generated content to heart and asked a number of her network to collaborate on the Adverblog Advent calendar asking everyone the same 5 questions. I would recommend reading through them as they give an insight into different campaigns and thoughts on the year ahead from a wide variety of peers. As well as picking up some new bloggers you may be interested in. Here’s my blurb.

1) Which is the (European) digital project that impressed you more this year and why?

I love the VW Night Driving campaign as it’s a great example of the “360” brand experience but also capitalises on and openly embraces user generated content: creating your own edit of the excellent TV ad using jumpcut and also creating or looking at great night drives from around Europe with a Google Maps mash up. Really taps into the brand promise of the Golf.

2) In your job, which is the most important thing you learnt this year?
That being part of the social media landscape is a fundamental basic before you even start to help clients with strategic direction. How can you have a sensible conversation on the merits of the big shiny object syndrome if you’ve never experienced and participated in Second Life, Twitter, the blogosphere etc. As Kevin Keegan once said, “you can’t win the raffle if you don’t buy a ticket.” Don’t just talk, act.

3) As a digital marketer/creative person what’s on top of your agenda for 2008?
Turning good words and intent into action. Although digital is regarded as important and budgets are shifting, consumers are still ahead of (most) brands in the digital space and corporate barriers and behaviours are, a lot of the time, still rooted in the old school and governed by risk rather than innovation. I love the quote by John Hegarty of BBH which should become our mantra: “from learn and do to do and learn.”

4) What, in your opinion, will be a killer application / key trend in interactive marketing in 2008?
Widgets. Content that educates, entertains and informs will drive the emotional connection between brands and consumers, ultimately leading to ROI. As the atomisation of the space continues, destination sites will still play a role but the content we create must be able to be detached and distributed to wherever the consumer is and wants (especially mobile).

5) Which book (about marketing/advertising/creativity/inspiration etc…) would you give as a Christmas present to Adverblog’s readers?
In my time out before I joined Ogilvy, I re-read these two books by Paul Arden which were originally recommended to me by the lovely Becky Power, now creative director at Full Six. Every page has a great insight into life in general not just our world. And it is still true in these digital times. I particularly love the two words that he pinned above his desk when reviewing work. In times where a lot of work is churn and burn, we should have this as our mantra alongside Mr Hegarty’s words above: “Astound Me”.

And here’s a pic from Durban airport in SA where I was scribbling my notes accompanied by a pint of Castle.

adverblog scribbles


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