Don’t use the iPhone as a phone of course

Quite amusing post by CNet UK about how bad the iPhone is at, well, being a phone: “The iPhone is the worst phone in the world“. Reminded me of a comment from a colleague recently talking about buying a new mobile phone, “I don’t want an iPhone because I want to use it as a phone and the battery is crap”. Very funny article and some good points…

Flying adverts: tiny adverts attached to common flies

A pretty unusual and original buzz around an advertising stunt at a German trade show. I never thought I’d be amused by a video of those pesky household flies. Obvioulsy 2nd generation offspring won’t be born with the same adverts 😉 :

Re-blogged from FastCompany via WiredUK

Getting Google results in English

I was recently getting very frustrated because I was constantly getting results from Google in French in both IE8 and Google Chrome due to having either a Windows installation in French or other similar French language preferences even when going into “Manage Search Providers”, I couldn’t find the option to obtain UK or US but mainly English based results!

This is what I found out that may help you too!

The solution if you want the results from Google that you type in the top right hand corner of IE8 to be in English, is to click on the link below and choose Google Search as your default search provider:
http://www.ieaddons.com/en/search-helpers/

When I went into Manage Search Providers and clicked on Find More Search Providers I was also getting an error page!

Braun Triumph toothbrush coupon con in France

I bought a Braun electronic toothbrush several months ago and just decided to write about it because I now want to buy a shaver but because of what happened with the Braun toothbrush purchase I have decided that regardless of the reviews, the proof or any other type of argument that may indicate (which you’ll see is not the case) that I should get a Braun shaver I WILL NOT.

braun oral b triumph professional care 9900 coupon con

braun oral b triumph professional care 9900 coupon con

Why may you ask, be so stubborn. Well I purchased a Braun Triumph toothbrush from Cdiscount and was promised a partial refund by sending it back with a coupon and proof of purchase.
The morning I received the toothbrush by post I sent the coupon on with everything asked for:
– Code bar from the box
– Bill with date of purchase
– Coupon filled in with all the information.

Several weeks if not months later I get a letter from some company I have never heard of saying that because I took more than 5 days to send the coupon in after the purchase I was disqualified and would not get the money from Braun. Also to be noted there was no email to contact anybody, neither Braun where ever they are in France and just a snail mail address for this company that did a great job of looking through the elements I sent. They might have seen that I purchased it online, and that well, guess what, you can’t send via email so it takes time for me to get the box with the code bar needed to get the refund.
You should know BRAUN coupons are a con in France and they cheat you!

So I will not spend another cent on anything from Braun. I am not going to buy a Phillips Sonic toothbrush just to spite them since the Braun toothbrush works fine but obviously don’t buy one 😉

Philips Flexcare Toothbrush

Philips Flexcare Toothbrush

However as explained I am now looking for a shaver and well I started looking at the Philips shaver because unlike the Braun toothbrush I am unhappy with my Braun shaver. I have looked at the Philips site and reviews about the arctic shaver and I must say for a dude like myself it looks like a cool gadget and looks a lot sexier than the Braun shaver. The whole cleaning system on my Braun one is just not good. But obviously for the moment I can’t compare. but I soon will be able to because as you guessed from the beginning of my post there is no way in hell I’m buying another Braun product. And to make it funnier I couldn’t even link to the page about the equivalent Braun product because it is all in Flash and couldn’t get an image either although I could from the Philips site because they were clever enough to do it in HTML with Flash rather than a full Flash site!

Philips 1095 Arcitec Rotary Shaver

Philips 1095 Arcitec Rotary Shaver: now does that look sexy or what

And the time indicator had better be readable upside down like on the image or else I will not be happy 🙂

I was also impressed by the Philips site because you could check the manual out. I was wondering whether the shaver would charge in the cleaning system and was able to confirm by ready the first few pages of the manual. But also found out that what looks to be just a cool looking travel case actually charges the shaver at the same time. You can buy it on their site and register the product online which is pretty cool. I found that the video that runs through the functions etc was good, although I felt the voiceover in French was a bit annoying, but that could just be me…

FireFox 3.6: pages move with your movements

Christopher Blizzard demonstrates how the upcoming Mozzila FireFox 3.6 can change the page orientation if your device has an accelerometer system (Thinkpads, Macbook pros). You can see how this works in the video below:

Budweiser: not convinced? Me neither

Just came across the new budweiser advert and well I must say it’s so ‘normal’ that it feels wrong for Budweiser. Maybe that is the aim of it!? An advert that creates an outcry from people, who have grown used to so damn good adverts from Budweiser. The powers that be at Bud thought they would tease us with this unusually ‘normal’ one!

Google Wave: Pulp Fiction style

Yes it’s a take on Pulp Fiction so there is some ‘foul’ language involved but if you can ‘take it’ then check it out, quite funny

Working too hard is not that efficient

Working too hard is not that efficient… in the long term

At a time where people are worried about losing their jobs and working all hours god sends to stand out from the pack in a positive manner it seems that they may not be providing their company with the best of themselves. Obviously if your company is short staffed and still has as much work they may not be so interested in the article over at FastCompany. But may be worth reading so at least you are aware 😉

Examples from Flickr and Facebook are provided to illustrate the misconception that getting people to work their socks off may not be providing you with the best results in the end!

Make sure you check out this great video from TED, Stefan Sagmeister is a world renowned designer who explains how every 7 years he takes a year off to pursue personal areas. He also indicates that structuring his time off was probably one of the most important parts in a successful sabbatical year. Furthermore this time often allows him to be a better designer and provide his clients with a better quality service once the sabbatical is over! Better still take the time to view the video see for yourself.

Are agencies no longer the flavour of the month?

Following on from the Twitterer is a mainly a narcissist article, the currently trendy term of “Consumer intelligence” seems to be giving clients the jitters (so agencies see it). Companies that understand the need for a consumer “pull” strategy where the emphasis is on the consumer, fits with the need to quickly respond and listen to the consumer, analyse new behaviour and habits. In a very interesting Ad-Age article the journalist explains that companies feel they don’t need agencies as much!

There is a great quote from the CEO of Unilever Paul Polman:

“Maybe the most extreme example of this is to be found in consumer-generated content, where we have invited consumers to develop communications for Omo and Vaseline as a complement to those generated by the company, and in the case of Peperami, we have even dispensed with the agency in favor of exclusively ‘crowdsourced’ content.
“However well traditional advertising agencies read the signals and recognize the need for radical change in their capabilities,” he said, “few agencies can address all the communications needs of a brand. … This is making the management of agencies increasingly complex, and raises challenging questions on how best to measure the value added by the respective partners and consequently how to manage remuneration.”

The current economic situation pushes clients to search for financially viable solutions, or at least good ROI you can present to your boss. From an agency perspective, we know this is without being prepared to accept a reduction in scope or speed to market. Although the speed to market aspect can often be better managed by agencies, the “same scope, with reduced budget” is just not always possible. Sure you can provide cheaper solutions but that generally implies a reduction in quality, even though clients may agree to it. Clients rarely anticipate the reactions from their project sponsors and hierarchy and it can fall back on the agency.
Clients who have previously externalized their marketing and branding requirements are now looking to internalize what they had given away to agencies over the years according to the above article. The likes of Forrester are pushing to get marketing and brand managers (sorry Forrester prefers Brand Advocates) to be use ‘invaluable’ Forrester insight and work in house rather than go through agencies as much.
Would this have anything to do with some of the larger digital agencies producing detailed market reports (ex: Digital Outlook) and complex dashboard systems that provide the same type of ‘insight’ Forrester is selling to clients?

I’m not sure Forrester is my idea of a company capable of seeking and identifying trends in the digital arena to serve as a catalyst for the client’s brand coverage but hey I work in an agency so I would be biased. Without denying the importance of the number crunching and analysis, it is just a small ingredient of the digital marketing mix.

Although the above article does not touch on the details or definition of an agency I think there is a tendency to consider them all to be the same. In the same way that Jon discusses how both Forrester and Gartner don’t go into enough details in their Content Management comparison reports, I feel they do the same when discussing and comparing agencies. Good digital agencies do provide support for the above areas mentioned by Forrester and far more. The intricacies and issues of implementing complicated technical solutions are part of a digital agency’s normal day. They also have a good understanding of all the other ingredients of the digital marketing mix, how it all works together down to the small details that Forrester don’t even touch on!

Even online ads can be a security hole!

An article on the New York Times explains how a group or person was able to get malicious code inserted on the New York Times and gave readers the impression that a program was scanning their computer

New York Times Malicious Ad Code Inserted

New York Times Malicious Ad Code Inserted

THE NYTimes article explains that this attack via online ad systems have already hit companies like FoxNews.com and the The San Francisco Chronicle.

As you can see in the below letter from Publicis owned Starcom this is obvioulsy being taken very seriously and security is being tightened up around the ad insertion procedures…
Publicis-Starcom_Media-Partners_Letter (PDF)