Archive for the ‘Communications planning’ Category

Twitter… the thrill is gone…or?

Thursday, March 11th, 2010

Just read this on mashable. People don’t seem to be signing up for Twitter anymore. People are stil tweeting though. So its not all bad.

Read more at Mashable


Social Media shortlist – big 4

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

Hermansen shoed me this interesting list of how companies integrate Social Media in their marcomm strategy. Not too surprising.

Read more at convinceandconvert


Communications Planner by day… Superhero by night… Baekster why…?

Wednesday, October 7th, 2009

The sharpest, most heroic comms planner in the world… coming to your rescue!

Twitter buzz

Monday, July 20th, 2009

Just wanted to share this website with you: tweetfeel It’s the social media research agency Conversition  which has developed a website through which people can search Twitter for mentions of brands, celebrities and products, and to see whether the tweets are positive or negative.

Now, I’m thinking it can be pretty useful as a tool to gain insights and tap into different conversations. What do you think? Do you have any experiences or ideas regarding the use of this tool?

/ iben larsen

Predictions for 2009 – utilities, socialism, totalitarianism and convergence

Tuesday, January 6th, 2009

Hey all

happy new years. Hope everyone had a great 08 and hopefully 09 wont be as bad as they say. I have a few predictions.

1) The rise of the branded Utility - I know I have been talking a lot about Branded Utilities already here on digital vinyl. And I will continue to do so. Over the past few years we have seen some examples of great utilities being created. We here at MEC in Copenhagen have ourselves created a running-GPS-tracker for Sony Ericssons Walkman phones – specifically for the Caroline Wozniacki phone w760i – MyTracks . We will see much more of this. This is the future of advertising.

We are currently working an a research project about this very phenomenon. We will definately keep you posted as we proceed.

2) Social Communities… - I know this is boring as shit. But we have really been fucking around with these so far. In 2009 I think that the advertisers will really embrace this and become better at commercialising the social media. Again we have created a great little facebook application for Sony Ericssons C905 camera phone. Which incidentally was a great success – because it was simple and thought through. Check it out: Photo Battle.

3) Convergence - another piece of old news. Again I think that we have talked about this for some time but reality has lacked behind. Next year we will see the different media themselves drive the convergence between media. This is what has lacked previously. At least in western Europe. On an academic and technological level the convergence has been possible, but the old media have been afraid. Now they will see online and other technological possibilities as their rescue plank. That will get things moving.

4) The Full Service Agency is back - Partially powered by this media convergence and also partially by the fact that contextual communication, social media and Branded Utilities are becoming more important we will see a new (or is it old) type of agency. The agency which can consult on comms strategy, can place media, perform creative work and implement online, offline, do events, etc. etc. The full service, integrated agency is back folks it is a matter of time.

My background is branding and afvertising. Today I’m a comms planner in a media (Comms) agency. We have started they journey into events, sponsorships, content and online development. It is a matter of time, and Sir Martin’s blessing, before the step is followed through into old school creative disciplines, such as copy writing and art direction. The next step again is publishing, AV production, etc. That will be a few more years I think.

There you have it folks. We’ll see how it all holds up in about a years time.


A book, a blog, two awards and the creation of the world

Tuesday, November 4th, 2008

A new book, social media, awards and great case studies are on today’s menu. Let’s go back to the beginning.

Well, not so far back, let’s skip a couple of years:

Since 2004, Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff, two analysts on social media from the international research company Forrester, have been bus. Since 2004 the’ve been posting about social media and technology from a marketing perspective on the blog Groundswell.  This year they’ve written a book, which I have just ordered on amazon today.

Charlene and Josh are also handing out seven Groundswell Awards, rewarding excellent and effective use of social technologies to advance an organizational or corporate goal. And the categories are:

LISTENING. Find out what customers are really saying in order to understand them better.

TALKING. Spread messages about a company.

ENERGIZING. Get a company’s best customers to evangelize its products.

SUPPORTING. Help customers support each other to solve each other’s problems.

EMBRACING. Integrate customers into the way a business works, including using their help to design products and improve processes.

MANAGING. Empower employees and managers within an organization.

SOCIAL IMPACT. Improve society with non-commercial applications.

You can have a look at the nominees and winners here, but I’d like to present to of the winning cases here, Namely the winners of the first two categories.

The LISTENING is all about consumer insight. How do we listen to them to understand them better? The winner was Mattel’s The Playground Community by Communispace.

Mattel and Communispace created a private online community of 500 moms with kids aged 3—10 in June 2007, in order to help them listen to and gain insight into the lives and needs of moms to help drive growth and innovation. On August 2, Mattel had to recall 1 million chinese-made toys painted with lead-based paint, and less than two weeks later, on August 14, Mattel recalled 18 million products that contained strong magnets that may detach and cause serious damage when ingested.

What did Mattel do? During this crisis they turned to their Playground Community, who gave them the information they needed to develop relevant and meaningful messages for the market, in some periods having daily contact with their community-moms.

Charlene Li and Josh Bernoff explain their award choise:

“Despite several worldwide product recalls in 2007, Mattel reported fourth quarter 2007 sales had increased 6% over last year. [...] Mattel’s listening strategy helped it to weather a difficult period and further solidified its relationship with moms as a brand that cares deeply about children and their families”

As marketing professionals we often try to come up with brilliant and engaging ways of spreading the message about our company and product, moving towards greater emphasis on below the line promotion.

A month ago I wrote a blog post about the challenges of promoting generic low-involvement products such as personal banking. The winner of the TALKING award is The Common Wealth Credit Union. A bank deeply rooted in Northern Alberta. Click at the picture below and take a look at this brilliant video. It’s 8 minutes long but it gives a genuine insight into the case, portraying how they suceeded in growing the number of new account openings  by 960% among 19-25 year olds compared to the same period a year prior:

This is social media marketing at its best. Really. Most importantly, it’s created extensive positive media coverage. I wonder if it would work in the banking industry in  Denmark. Could we communicate this way to 19-25 year-olds about banking?

I, for one, would like to congratulate The Common Wealth Credit Union on their alternative yet solid work. Larissa, last year’s winner,  got a nine-month contract. Now, Young & Free Alberta have just found next years spokesperson. Congratulation, Myles!


How do we sell the complex and boring stuff?

Monday, October 6th, 2008


Last week I took part in a workshop, focused on finding the proper communication platform for a Danish financial institution. It proved to be much more difficult than I’d imagined. Why? I’ll give you three reasons.

Firstly, they sell a low-involment product. Somehow people dont really care about how their money are managed, as long as it “works”.

Secondly, the underlying mechanics of privat banking, interest rates, payments and retirement savings are perceived as very complex.

Thirdly, the market is very generic. Most players offer largely similar products. That doesn’t make the branding easier.

I bet it’s a quite general problem for banks, accounting firms, investment bankers and insurance company.

Since then, I’ve done some thinking on the subject. Mostly on how to communicate something  which is complex and low-involving in a simple and slightly more involving way. This is when i stumbled upon this video in Neil Perkins blog

YouTube Preview Image

(made by the talented people at

I’m a big fan of this way of communicating a complex thing. Using a short video, showing numbers and words in an animated way, supplied by small icons of tanks, bombs and disabled persons.

Couldn’t this be used to explain complex economic issues? Especially to, lets say, 15-35 year old people, who’re used to this kind of visual style from internet videos? I bet it could. I see stacks of money rising and falling, icons of old and young people flashing over the screen.


Nike+ – The Human Race

Monday, September 1st, 2008

So as a great many people around the world I ran 10k for theNike Human Race yesterday. For the uninitiated, The Human Race is Nike uniting all their Nike+ runners (and others) trying to get 1 million people to run 10k’s on the same day. So far they are about half of that, but people can still upload their data.

I never ran 10k before, so it was fun. Easier tan imagined. So far I’m a measily no 7-thousand something timewize though…what kind of a crazy bastard runs 10 k i 27 minutes…well well well.

My rank in the Human Race

But I must say – another great piece of comms planning from Nike – simple, uniting and something that makes people talk…and my Nike+ Mini went nuts on Facebook – still hasn’t stopped dancing:-)

Baek’s Nike+ Mini after the Human Race


Cannes Diaries: The death of a Cannes Man

Thursday, June 19th, 2008

So what sums up Cannes ‘08. Well I don’t think there really was anything new under the sun this year. Basically, the presenters were the same as last year and they didn’t really haw that much new to say. Of course this is a bit disappointing. But the hole new media user-generated revolution happened a few years a go. Everything is still pretty theoretical, which means that there aren’t that many cases. At least good ones. So to be honest I don’t expect that much new stuff next year either. One thing though. Cannes needs to get some new talent on the seminar stages. Its not cool to see the same people resent the same regurgitations year after year. And maybe pick some other angles of the biz than just digital and new media. Yes it is the most interesting happening since…forever. But having 30 presenters present the same stuff over and over again is not cool – how about some implications for branding, PR, design, etc. As far as entries go, well a lot of good press. The media entries were a bit disappointing. I sat through a few TV screenings. The general level is outrageously low. Out of 100 films, 5 are good. That’s just a waste of time and money. It looks like the Voyeuer campaign, for HBO, created by BBDO New York might take a Titanium. They cleaned up Grand Prix’s in pretty much all the other categories. And it is pretty cool. Fantastic webite, really cool outdoor, stripping the outer wall off an apartment block (or at least giving that impression). Along with print and TV it looks like a brilliant idea, fantastically executed. Its not driven by branded utility though. Since that has really been the buzz down here again, I’m not sure if that might work against the campaign. It shouldn’t because it really is straight up, top work.

I talked to Per Pedersen, who is the Danish Film Juror and creative and strategic exec at uncle in Denmark. He said that people (meaning the famous and important rock’n’roll stars in the juries) were talking a bit about the Nike, take it to the next level film, with the fantastic Eagles of Death Metal soundtrack. Obviously that’s going to win something, but not passed a Gold Lion I would think. Check out the film clip in another entry right here on digital vinyl. A personal comment is that music also seems to play a much bigger role than it has before. I guess the collapse of the music industry means that the bands are getting passed their artistic integrity qualms and cashing in. I’m not sure how I feel about that, but there really is no way around it. Nokia will launch their free music with the phone platform in Q4 08 probably. The different phone operator are starting to give free mp3s with their service, and the people at are making film and music downloads extremely easy. Radiohead and Nine Inch Nails release albums with user setting their own prices. This can’t be stopped. Recorded music will surely be free in a matter of very few years. We’ll see. But in line with the adding value and branded utility discussion I welcome better muic in commercials and on websites (Trent Reznor’s NIN website and alternative reality game for the Year Zero release won a Grand Prix Cyber Lion, how cool is that. It does look fucking excellent).

Of course the Halo 3 launch is looking extremely cool also. Mixing miniature soldiers, with war photography, real life “psycologists” for war veterans and veterans reminiscence. just the whole core idea is just brilliant.

Socially, the festival was excellent as always. Way too many Gin & Tonics at the Gutter, Way too many beers on the beach. Way too many drunken, let’s change the industry cuz we’re soo fookin’ brilliant discussion. I must admit. Writing this last Cannes post from the plane going back to Copenhagen. It wears you out physically and mentally, but its all a part of the experience and I do think that discussing the seminars over all the beers and G&Ts is actually healthy for the industry. Because this is what people talk about. We don’t discuss women or football, even in the midst of the Euro 08…OK we do discuss a little women, but the vast majority of all the discussions are on comms and creative people talk to the strategists and the media people. So as for the integration of creative and media and integrated new media comms I think more people should actually attend this festival – It should be mandatory for all the young guns and old farts within pedagogic reach. You just don’t get this level of inspiration anywhere else…not even on Digital Vinyl. So let that be the closing remarks from a very tired Kristian Baek en route from Cannes to Copenhagen. Au Revoir.

A very tired Kristian Baek on the plane from Cannes to Copenhagen


Cannes Diaries: Tribal DDB

Thursday, June 19th, 2008

Tribal presented another Wii hack. This one called Wiimba – which is the fusion of a Wii and a Roomba vacuuming robot – you know one of those which will do it by itself. You just press start and it starts in circles. Not as cool as the Head Tracker, but still…it seems that Wii is really creating a buzz and turning some heads.

Read all about it in It is pretty cool, although I really suck at it. Playstation was also mentioned. In PS3 they are launching a new service, where you create an avatar and can use him to buy stuff. A clothing manufacturer with the same concept was also presented. Guess SecondLife hasn’t lived in complete vain. Finally, a Disney and Google Earth co-op which actually looked very cool, was presented. Basically Disney had Google create a virtual version of their Euro Disney. The animation was photo quality, and as I understood the animations were done using a shitoad of high res photos, which makes a nice little Google Earth integration. It looked just great, so I’m sure the kids will love it.