Citroen Crowdsources their new C1 Connexion via FB

Was only a matter of time before there was a crowdsourced car created. Citroen UK have taken the plunge, empowering their Facebook community to co-create their new C1 Connexion model. Nice work Citroen as I can only imagine the challenges of getting this idea ‘though’ a car company.

#GoogleVoiceSearch speaks for itself in Aussie experiments

I’ve had the pleasure of working with the guys at Google Australia the past few months on an exciting project for Google Voice Search for mobile.

I’ll let the videos speak for themselves, but essentially we created two acoustic experiments with some rather unusual apparatus to test out the capabilities of Google Voice Search for mobile.

These are the two teaser videos

These are the actual longform experiments

During the filming of the two experiments we also reached out the the Tourism Australia Facebook community asking them what search questions they’d like to ask ‘underwater’ and in the ‘desert’.

So far we’ve got over 3.5m views all in and growing as well as a sizeable usage shift in peeps out there doing voice searches on their mobile, giving the technology a good old try.


Mini + Vice – All the Wrong Places does Tokyo

Mini has struck up a great collaboration with youth lifestyle publisher/digital brand VICE.  A great example of a brand that ‘gets’ the need to create cool cultural content for youth.

They’ve created an a web content series called ALL THE WRONG PLACES comprised of 5 mini doco’s showing adventures in culturally cool places around the world. The narratives dip into diverse subcultures, the first being in Tokyo, looking at the Dekotora Trucks subculture. The stories are mission based requiring the help of a Mini and  Co-pilots are being  selected via the Facebook page. Wiht 2.5m FB fans, engagement levels should be high.

I like this idea, I think it definitely taps into Mini’s target audience of ‘ independent free spirited travellers with an appetite for creativity and cultural’.

Episode 1 is pretty cool, great production values although I was kinda hoping for a little more. Will be interesting to see the social media engagement on the Facebook page unfold. Reminds me a bit of the Telstra Sushi Plane idea we created in 2010 whereby we sent 14 Aussie teens/20 somethings to Tokyo on cultural and digital adventure, using Tokyo as a live test environment for the new HTC smartphones.



Brands scramble over Google + Brand pages launch

My planning colleague Locky and I put together this short piece on Google + Brand pages and implications for brands. Note: We both work on the Google account here in Australia, however we’ve written this independently.

Previously only open to personal profiles, Google+ has today opened access to brand pages. While they share many similarities, Google+ differs from Facebook in that users can intuitively control who has access to what information by dividing contacts up into ‘Circles’. Other features such as YouTube integration, video chat ‘Hangouts’, ‘Sparks’ content updates and +1’s for search rankings all leverage Google’s massive ecosystem. Brands will definitely be looking at leveraging the ‘Hangouts’ feature allowing consumers to have video conversations with employees, brand ambassadors etc.



The first and most urgent thing for brands to do is to claim their brand page name (+brand). While there are authenticity measures in place around this, it is essential to avoid domain squatters down the track. This can be done here.


Best practice for brands on Google+ is still a relative unknown. Functionality remains limited with a lack of applications (compared to Facebook) but photo, video and wall functionality are very similar to Google+ personal pages and what we have become used to on Facebook.

Examples of early Google+ brand pages can be seen at





Google have also set up their own Google+ Your Business page for more information.


We recommend brands create their page ASAP and clearly set expectations in the ‘About’ section or in a post about how the page will fit into their social ecosystem. This may be as simple as stating that ‘Our Google+ page is currently under construction and we’ll be sure to let you know when we’ll be available to chat’ or ‘Google+ will be home to our photos and videos for now but we can help with any of your queries at [link].


It’s also important to note that there are no costs in setting up a page and that Google+ global usage is well over 40 million and growing. Given the size of the wider Google ecosystem and the potential for brands in terms of SEO, offers, analytics and more, it makes sense to claim your place now.

Further reading on the importance of Google+ for brands can be seen at AdAge and Mashable while Google’s promotional video can be seen here.


IAMPLAYR: social gaming first person style

IAMPLAYR takes Nike Bootcamp to the next level. This is where social gaming is going. IAMPLAYR fuses online gaming, facebook, live videos and social streams to bring to life the story of what it takes to be a footballer today. It’s unique angle is the first person narrative. Nike is the first major sponsor to be involved & I’m sure they’ll wrap up all the sponsorship rights and leverage it within as a platform.

IAMPLAYR is where the future of social gaming is going. Well done to the dudes at WE R Interactive who developed it. SUper cool.

Telstra Sushi Plane content goes live

I’m really proud to say that our Telstra Sushi Plane content has gone live. It’s great to see the effort by our team here at DDB Sydney come to fruition. 

 We sent 14 young Aussies to the home of pop culture Tokyo to take part in a reality game adventure which mashed the latest technology with crazy Japanese culture. All in a bid to create a live ‘test environment’ for the exclusive HTC smartphone’s  on Telstra’s Next G network, showcasing real people engaging with technology in a crazy environment.

You can follow the story here.

The guys and gals qualified for a seat on Sushi Plane by winning the ‘Manga Me’ (create your own Japanese superhero avatar) Facebook competition back in June/July.

The lucky 14 were paired up into 7 teams to compete in the Sushi Plane challenge in Tokyo –  think Japanese gameshow techified.

The entire experience was powered by the fantastic HTC Desire phones and Telstra’s Next G technology. It was all about creating an immersive experience for these lucky 14 and capturing the content from the live gaming adventure.

The teams competed in three challenges as well as several Augmented Reality Bonus challenges to see who’d be crowned Sushi Plane champion.The three challenges were:

Tokyo Adrift

Megapixel Sumo

Sushi Pain

This is a short video introducing the Sushi Planers

Check out the Sushi Plane content here

Thanks also to SET Japan, Naked Sydney, Mango for collaborating with us on this project.

Glastotag – creating the world’s most tagged photo

Glastotag - the world's most tagged photo

Simple but great idea from Orange UK who recently sponsored Glastobury 2010. Glastotag is a mammoth photo taken at half time during the England v Slovenia match from the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury. They are trying to create the world’s most tagged photo ever. The thing I really like about this idea is that it taps into a two simple but powerful truths amongst  festival rat youths, in that they love having their party pic taken at festivals. and they love tagging themselves.

They’re creating a bit of culture with this idea, sure they’ve tapped into an existing event, but with this audience, you go to where the fish are- unless of course you’re Red Bull and you’re creating events yourself.

One of my football buddies Joe was there and he said it was awesome, he’s still to find his head in the photo, but the great zooming features on the Glastotag make it pretty easy to spot yourself out. Great idea by Orange and nice Facebook Connect integration making it super easy to share with friends. As we all know, youth want to be part of the brands story, and this has been one of the better music festival integrations I’ve seen by a telco, as they genuinely have added value to the partygoers experience ,not just invaded the space.