It’s generally accepted that there are contexts in other worlds where life can be sustained. But we make a mistake of thinking that the causal outcome of this is that life exists in other worlds. It is more than probable that there will be life in other worlds across time, but the likelihood that we’ll be able to comprehend it within our timespan is less likely. The delta of time is just so massive.
So I was sitting in Schiphol Airport, marveling at the height of the dutch businessmen. Then I wondered, is our height associated with the sea-level of our birthplace? 21% of the dutch population live below seal-level, 50% of the country less than 4 feet above sea level. Are we like flowers struggling for the sun, reaching to poke our heads above the water?
…Really enjoyed this post, Marc. The irony is that I couldn’t reply to your post from your site. On one end, you’re soliciting input, but your site doesn’t allow for it. :) I think welcoming criticism is powerful, those who harness it and are disciplined enough to know what do it with, ultimately succeed.
Tumblr is now open for comments. If you don’t follow @mdilone you should.
I’ve always resisted commenting on posts. Taking criticism is hard in person, but much harder in black and white. But, since working more on my own I’ve realized the deep value of external input. So, even if it’s imperfect, last month I decided to be more critical. I invite the same in return.
Interestingly @matternet we decided to organize the space into three theoretical zones. Dreaming, Engineering and Critique. Those who follow the history of Disney know this isn’t a new concept.
To be brutally honest it was much easier to execute on the Engineering Space because there was an obvious need. The dreaming space languished due to my lack of attention and ability to make something real. But, due to the effort of @PaolaSantanaM and @andreasx the dreaming room became a reality.
Being in that room really effects the way I think and the way I work with team. In that room I’m not protected by my lack of expertise. I can’t defer to the wisdom of someone else. I can’t deny my responsibility for what we’re all doing. I’m able to dream, suggest, pose questions in the absence of understanding the reality. In that room we all become equals.
But, I’ve realized that The Critic space still doesn’t exist. Criticism at this moment has a time, but no place. It’s just become my number one priority, because without criticism it’s hard to test, reform or strengthen beliefs. It becomes hard to weed out mediocrity. Criticism is part of the creative process. Creative destruction should be embraced not evaded. It’s the creative equivalent of ‘natural selection’. And creating a space for criticism implies checking ego’s at the door, inviting hard hitting observations with the sole purpose of making the work better.
Collaboration without criticism becomes the quickest way to execute bland ideas to which people object to least. Of course maybe you disagree. Bring it on. I want to hear. Lets make things better.
I wrote a response to this piece in FastCoCreate by Leif Abraham – http://bit.ly/1nS3YWB
Lief, I’m not sure I agree with you.
I’ve worked in agencies that make products and platforms (I think they’re different by the way) and I’ve worked in product design companies that have to create campaigns. You are correct in the observation that agencies aren’t set up to maintain products but then I challenge the assumption that they need to be.
Also I don’t think we can dismiss the value that companies like R/GA have created in the stagnating agency model – Full disclosure I worked there too. We should be building on the great work that Nick, Bob and Barry did on platforms thought not dismissing it, that’s too easy. What’s next, what’s better?
By the way Nike Plus changed the future of Nike, I can say that because I worked on Nike business at Wieden + Kennedy 10 years before Nike+, then on Nike+. Instead of just describing ‘Do it’ Nike+ became ‘Doing it’. Of course Fuel becomes the quantification of ‘Do’ in do it. This is very special on many levels. Not at least giving the digital clients inside Nike much deserved spotlight. It’s a great example of brand/product/message integration.
Of course this wasn’t just the agency, it was a combination of Agencies and a well organized client that had a clear intention, and a set of users who were compelled to do. The product didn’t spike and fail, because it wasn’t the agency that was supporting it long term. It was the client and the user. The product belonged to the client, not the agency. Precisely because Agencies aren’t designed to maintain product roadmaps.
Depending who you are ‘Platforms’ are Development Environments, Hardware Solutions, or connected ecosystem of products, services and messages. It’s a loaded term, and because there are so many contradicting meanings probably a poor choice. But in the sense that you describe, they’re just connected experiences that are equally owned by the brand and the user. We should all be looking to create this level of coherency.
You are wrong to say that the platform/campaign model serves CMO/CEO’s only, you’re also wrong to think that it’s an invention of agencies. Business’s that have been born in the last 10 years don’t see such a divide in product and marketing. Look at airbnb, was neighborhoods a product or marketing? Was their response to Sandy marketing? Or an evolution of their product inspired by customer use? Is the iPhone a product? Or a platform to support multiple software products? When products become entwined in service and when the product interface invites so much interaction. Product and Marketing become indistinguishable.
Modern Companies don’t have solid divides between Marketing, Product Design, Tech Roadmaps and Customer Acquisition. They understand their brand sits at an interface. They protect and value value of their connection to users, marketing to them is just as much listening as speaking. Marketing is to modern companies just a smart way to move the product forward.
So the question is, not whether agencies can support product development, but how we create the next step of integration between the product and message. How do we create tools that user will value, products that the consumer will recommend, processes that the whole organization will support and tell stories together that continue to entertain?
I’m not standing up for R/GA, they’re perfectly able to do it for themselves. But building constructive steps forward into a new paradigm for marketing is what we’re all trying to do.