British Airways

The anthemic television campaign for British Airways which became a touchstone for the brand and its values. Watch here or go to Creative Work & Case Studies for the full story.

Land Rover

The ad that started the resurgence of Land Rover, enforcing it, globally, as “The best 4x4xfar.” See Creative Work & Case Studies for the background to the campaign.

You are not who you think you are

How many times have you heard someone say “I am who I am”? Defiantly.

Well, I don’t buy it. Neither from a person nor a Brand.

Nor indeed are you necessarily “who you want to be”. (You may be kidding yourself.)

You are what you DO. You are what you did today. (I could even suggest “you are who you are” when no one’s watching.)

Continue reading You are not who you think you are

Captain’s Log

The pilot on my plane this morning was a wizz on the Harmonica.

As he welcomed people to the flight, he gave us all some fast-paced Southern tunes, interspersed with some information about where we were going and some crap about seat belts and exits.

He was warm, engaging and funny – yet still sounded in control, mature and Captain-like, just one in a fahhhn Southern mood.

All it takes to turn me from
a shuddering wreck to a contented happy passenger is communication

Now, I hate flying. Hate it. Terrified. (Actually it’s not the flying so much as the crashing.) But I have a serious deep-seated fear. I hear and feel every bump, every creak, every undulation, every noise, every movement the plane makes and assume either one of our friends that wear fabric on their heads is up to no good or the wings are about to fall off.

Two things get me through this.

1. Drugs and alcohol.

2. A communicative pilot.

If I’m on a flight and we hit turbulence, I freak out. If I’m on a flight and calm Captain John J. Rickenbacker III, who introduced himself earlier, warned me that 20 minutes into the flight we’d “hit a few bumps for 10 minutes,”I’m fine. All it takes to turn me from a shuddering wreck to a contented happy passenger is communication.

And, as a result, my already-high opinion of Air Tran is heightened still further. No surprise this fine airline is now in the Southwest stable.

The Captain stepped out of his cabin as we disembarked and he looked like your average blue-chip fifty-something solid guy, albeit with a grin. And a Harmonica.

“Sully” made us realize than airlines don’t fly us, pilots do.  And as brand ambassadors, they (in my view) account for a huge percentage of my view of that company, once I’m in the air. I firmly believe there are no companies. There are only employees.

One never “sees” or experiences a company, just its iteration, its outward experience – whether that’s a website, an automated phone system or a human.

I find it staggering, still, that so many companies allow their companies to be flown without great pilots.

Sir Ken Robinson: Do schools kill creativity?

This is about 5 years old. But it’s a seriously inspirational TED Talk, given by a teacher, talking about how our education system ‘kills’ creativity. Some of our companies, even some of our marketing departments do it, too.

Why nincompoops worship data

This is a piece on data.

Written by a man who’s run a very successful global ad agency group for more than 2 decades.

So he probably deserves a listen.

WHY do middle-managers love data so much? So they can prove they shouldn’t be fired?