Tag Archives: website

Outdoor advertising reinvented

Advertising used to be simple; for many years you just had to create ads for TV, radio, billboards and newspapers/magazines and reach varying degrees of a homogenous mass audience.  Now the choices are mind-blowing and even old school media is reinventing itself.  Take a look at this astounding augmented reality outdoor ad for the Beetle.  I haven’t got a clue how it was done but everything from the use of the media to the execution makes you go ooh and aahh in all of the right places.  Will it lead to people going out and buying a Beetle?  Not in itself but it definitely got noticed and talked about creating a real buzz.  The first priority for advertising is to create and build awareness which is all about placement and creative execution.

Read the article here:

And watch how it works here:

If you have got an iPad or iPhone you can try it for yourself by downloading the app (vwjuicedup) and a grabbing one of the Canadian Beetle posters from Google images.

Other big name companies who have explored the world of augmented reality include Mini who ran ads in German magazines and Lego who have developed some amazing packaging which enables the pack to reveal its contents fully assembled within live 3D animated scenes.

Shameless plug

Our new website is live and the opposite of dangerous.  If you want to quadruple your sales in under 5 minutes please take a mo to pay a visit (see below for how I created a cunning link) – spot the deliberate mistake and I’ll grow a great big bushy moustache for charity!


ATOM - new website

How to stand out and make a difference

Movember is such a great initiative, it never fails to make me chuckle and as such it’s a real shame it hasn’t taken off here.  It’s the perfect opportunity to check out how silly you look with a ‘tash while raising money for good causes.  It’s also a chance for brands to get involved and be associated with a fun event.  Win, win, win as we call it in the trade.


 Multi-coloured sheep

 There was a very famous black sheep ad for Levis created way back in 1982 by BBH.  I’ve long wanted to find a reason to showcase it again and the picture below from the recent Rugby World Cup in New Zealand has given me the excuse.  In reality the only connection is sheep but I loved the enterprise of the farmer who epitomised the warmth of his country’s welcome by painting his flock in the national colours of the competing teams.

Levi's black poster campaign

When the world zigs, zag. Classic poster ad from BBH.

NZ sheep

Rugby strip for some New Zealand sheep

 Always look on the bright side of death

 I was sent this gem by my colleague Nameer Kanderian.  It is John Cleese’s eulogy to Graham Chapman, it’s in the worst possible taste and that’s what makes it spot on.  There is a moment when you think it’s all going horribly wrong but it’s a great example of knowing your audience and using humour to elevate a sad occasion to something very special.

How to get to the top of the greasy pole

A few months ago I was reading a very interesting article that argued the greatest politicians were the ones with the most serious personality disorders. Churchill for example was a manic-depressive (bipolar disorder) with a love of whisky and soda.  His extreme personality enabled him to lead a country in times of great difficulties.  Now comes news that top achievers in the world of business also don’t conform to norms.

In a study published by the journal Psychology, Crime and Law, Belinda Board and Katarina Fritzon tested 39 senior managers and chief executives from leading British businesses. They compared the results to the same tests on patients at Broadmoor special hospital, where people who have been convicted of serious crimes are incarcerated. On certain indicators of psychopathy, the bosses’ scores either matched or exceeded those of the patients. In fact, on these criteria, they beat even the subset of patients who had been diagnosed with psychopathic personality disorders.

The full article in The Guardian newspaper is about wealth destroyers, it’s a bit of a shocker but well worth a read.  If being horrid is how to get rich it’s lucky most of the world is very poor.  Click the image to read The 1% are the best wealth destroyers the world has ever seen.

Guardian image

Balotelli takes the biscuit

Like a lot of people I’ve found the antics of Balotelli (the Italian striker currently playing for Man City) compulsive viewing.  He’s barking mad, you never know what is going to happen next apart from it will make you laugh.  Setting fire to his house with a firework and then getting involved with the firework safety campaign was Balotelli at his finest.  Unfortunately he will self destruct in the not too distant future so enjoy the show while you can.

iPad app(s) of the week

I hope you iPadders all have them loaded with Evernote and are now eagerly awaiting my next recommendation.  While there are a lot of applications out there that do tricks sometimes it’s the simple ones that get the most use.  This week I’m going for Dolphin HD, it’s just a sort of speed dial equivalent where you can quickly add and access your favourite sites.  No thrills it just works and for that and the fact I use it every day (unlike 99% of the apps I’ve downloaded including Angry Birds which I’ve only played once for about 2 minutes – what is the fascination?) it gets a 5 star rating.

Introducing Screamo

When I was growing up my parents hated my music tastes and that is exactly how it should be.  However as my girls started into their teens I noticed there was quite a lot of cross over in our tastes.  When we sat down to supper the other evening and they announced they had a new band that they wanted me to listen to I was genuinely interested.  From there on in it went a bit pear-shaped as they introduced me to the band that were rated the best performers at Reading and Leeds and has chalked up a pretty damn impressive 22 million hits on YouTube.  My good friend Tony Dodds once described Enter Shikari as a bit shouty, by comparison Bring Me The Horizon make the Enter boys look like a bunch of choir boys in a continual state of blissful harmony.  Turn down the volume, hit the link and run fast to hide behind the sofa.

Top 5s

Having done well over a year’s worth of top 5s I’ve actually run out for the moment so have decided to make them a monthly rather than weekly occurrence.   Happy to take suggestions from the floor…


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Back in the swing of it

Sorry for my absence since the summer recess; with praise for our website reaching an all time high it was time to change and I’ve been diverted to write the copy and given strict instructions to ensure it’s serious in tone and rich in content.  I can’t help thinking they tasked the wrong person but I will let the nice people who pay a visit to our website decide.  We’ll let you know when the new design goes live on our Facebook page.

Proper jobs

Where to start?  What better than a bit of wishful thinking.  The entrepreneurial people of Dubai are always on the lookout for money making ideas elsewhere and giving them a go here.  Witness the 101 deal gobblers that batter your inbox each and every day.  I’ve long been pushing for a proper Cornish pasty shop to open in Dubai, they are on every street corner in England and doing a roaring trade – not surprising given they are bloody delicious!  For anyone who thinks I’m talking absolute nonsense, this summer I discovered Winchester, a very upmarket British city with a lovely cathedral and very posh public school (why are schools with hugely expensive fees that only .005% of the population can afford called public?).  I had just come out of the new Boots £1 shop (seriously everything was on offer) and look what I spied.  Being  a very fair person and given it was my first day back in Blighty I bagged one from each shop and was soon lovin’ it in a way that McDonald’s can only dream of.

Winchester pasty shops

Classic books for free (all above-board!)

While in Britain, I  decided to download a very British book; the fact that I could download Tess of the D’Urbervilles onto my Kindle without parting with money was an added incentive (Amazon has lots of classics for free download).  I immediately settled into a deep depression as Tess’s tale of woe went from getting out of the wrong side of bed to needing to hide under the covers.  I mentioned this to my wife and she reassured me that Tess is one of Thomas Hardy’s happier books.  Reinvigorated I pressed on to the end and  you can imagine my surprise when poor Tess was led to the gallows and hung for murder!  Meanwhile Tess’s lover went off into the sunset with her younger sister.  Sorry for giving the plot away.

App of the week

A great thing I managed to sort while I was in England was acquiring a lot of iPad apps which I can drip feed to you over the coming weeks and months.  First up I really, really like Evernote; it’s a freebie and incredibly useful.  In essence you can create notes and update and sync them at anytime on a variety of devices.  I’ve got Evernote on my PC, BlackBerry and iPad and it even does something clever in Outlook but I’m not sure what.

Apple shaken to the core

While on the subject of Apple, I read the very sad news about Steve Jobs which was then followed by the shock of Apple falling short of market analysts’ expectations as a consequence of which there was a 5% decline in their share price.  It’s very worrying for the world economy when a stellar company like Apple starts to suffer.  Having seen the headlines I dug a bit deeper to better understand what the crisis was all about; had they broken even or god forbid made a loss I wondered?  Imagine my surprise when I read that Apple made a staggering $6.25 billion profit in the last quarter.  I know a lot of companies that are struggling to make ends meet at the moment who would be declaring a holiday on the back of a $1 profit from all of their hard work.

I can imagine Steve looking down and being quite proud of his efforts.  So much so he might even have had a wry smile at the new Apple logo which was designed by the child of the student who created the Nike swoosh.  Or what about the clever people who have created Macaquariums, brilliant!

Steve Jobs inside apple bite


Joke of the week

As BlackBerry encountered network problems and Apple discovered a few glitches in their new operating system the internet was awash with Blackberry and Apple crumble jokes, tee hee.

Gaddafi bites the dust

With news breaking of Gaddafi’s timely death (spare me the pics please) I’ve got my fingers crossed that the good people of Libya have planned for the peace.  So many times in history the war has been won by the good guys but what followed was even worse.

The return of the tomatoes

For those of you who followed the tale of the tomato last year which culminated in a bumper crop I’ve planted this year’s seeds and am looking forward to bringing you updates on a regular basis.  In the meantime my water melon is going great guns. I can never get over the fact that you can take seeds from a melon you’re eating and plant them in a bit of dirt, add some water and fertiliser from recycled food scraps off you go.  Thank you to Dr Julian Nichols (aka the sandman) for pointing me in the right direction.  If I’ve inspired you, have a look at Dubai Veg Growers for more info.

Top 5 things I did during the summer

  • Climbing Widgery Cross on Dartmoor and flying my new kite (bought for my daughters)
  • Visiting Sharpham Vineyard on the River Dart in Devon, good wine, great cheese
  • Riding on the dodgems at a vintage fairground near Lifton in Devon
  • Supporting the SOS Kitaid golf event with some rugby buddies from my Bath days
  • Mackerel fishing off Exmouth

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Filed under Observations