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Mandy's PD Blog

Updated: 2015-09-17T00:56:35.589+01:00


Battle of Concepts: Chear!




Op de valreep... maar wel de moeite waard!


Op de valreep nog een essay...
"De subjectiviteit van perfectie".



Et voila!

Evaluation (pdf)

Locust... Ontdek een nieuwe wereld!



Hier staan de deliverables van het project

WP8: Integrated Systems Europe


(image) The subject of my thesis is narrowcasting and the future possibilities of it. Colleagues were going to the Integrated Systems Europe show in the RAI, Amsterdam, and since this is Europe's no. 1 show for professional AV and Electronic System Integration, I figured it might be useful to join them.

My first impression when I got there was that it was a competition who had the most beautiful, but even more the largest screen. Really hot were also the possibilities of video conferencing.
I talked to a few people who's product was narrowcasting and what possibilities they see with for example RFID. Most of the people I talked to didn't see much money in such 'futuristic' applications. I don't really think it's that futuristic. I think with RFID chips getting cheaper this future is pretty close.

I was really interested in the interactive (touch) screens presented at the show. These make it for example possible for a real estate shop to interactively show their collection of homes in their shopping window, instead of placing pieces of paper there.

The Samsung people were quite open minded as well. They had a Giorgio Armani display and they would definitely see a market for a display which would also carry out scents. They also confirmed that content makes the difference.

I can also conclude from this show that the integration of a display in a total display or a creative frame around the display really adds value to the complete application.

Eventually the show did give me some new perspectives, I took some photos and short videos which I put together in a short movie, which you can see here!


WP7: Peer-to-peer in the Longer Tail


(image) The Long Tail by Chris Anderson lacked one pretty important aspect: how should marketeers market in the Long Tail? Chris Anderson himself doesn't have the answer to this question. He does have some advice.

'The way to market in the Long Tail is to stimulate conversation. It's really all about provoking mouth-to-mouth advertising.'

So back to the most basic way of marketing communication, right? Well, not completely. Talking nowadays doesn't only happen through mouths ofcourse. Social media like blogs and social networks are the key. Business messages don't work on this scale, so important for a company is to keep in mind the next 5 things:

1. Long Tail is a conversationmedium. Make sure customers talk to eachother about your product.
2. Find the right tone for your message. Work on a bottom-up message.
3. Localise the people with a lot of influence; those who influence others the most with their opinion or knowledge.
4. Without acceptance of the blogosphere you shouldn't be in the Tail.
5. Find the right approach for the right medium.

I guess the target group is more alive than ever!

Thanks to

WP6: The Semantic Web


For a while I've heard people talking about the 'Semantic Web' or 'The Intelligent Web'.

Here a nice movie to have it explained really easily, and an interesting article which explains it a little more detailed!

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WP5: Remarkable call back by Volkswagen


Today Volkswagen placed advertisements in all Dutch daily papers in which they ask owners of a Volkswagen Golf 1 from the construction year 1974 to go back to their dealers. Something would be wrong with the closing mechanism of the dashboard locker... And since this brings down the standards of the quality of the car, Volkswagen decided it needs to be fixed.


It turns out all these owners can get a free maintenance service. I wonder how many response they will get!


WP4: New logo Rijksoverheid


The Dutch National Government has chosen the logo created by Studio Dumbar to represent the government from now on. Prime Minister Balkenende presented the logo on December 21st. This is the first impression of the new logo:


The definite version of the logo and the complete house style will be ready and presented somewhere halfway 2008. The implementation process will take three years.(image)

"For the first time in Dutch history, the Dutch government has decided to present a unified graphic identity nationwide, which will apply to all organisations that fall directly under Ministerial responsibility. These include the 13 ministries, inspectorates and interdepartmental senders such as Postbus 51, and Job Mobility Centre."

The logo looks 'sober', to emphasize neutrality and continuity of the Dutch government.

In my opinion the logo does look sober. I expected something more original; the chosen image isn't, but it's definitely recognizable for the Dutch people and I think that is important.
I am very curious about the next step. Which fonts will be chosen to indicate who the sender of a letter is, or how it's going to be used in communication.

WP3: Finally the fresh breeze in Insuranceland


Last year we did a battle of concepts for Nationale Nederlanden. The assignment: to create a new insurance which looked less boring and would take away the dusty and complicated image from insurances. I don't know who won the battle but I guess one company got inspired... It all started not so long ago when posters in the shelters of bus stops started popping up, showing the word 'Datzo', visualized in a logo from well known insurance companies.With Google, the 'Datzo' website is found easily. The website offers you the most ridiculous insurances, way too many tabs and a guy who's looking like a typical person who you wouldn't want to handle your insurance stuff. Not really a website to take seriously…especially considering the subject.It took me a while to find out what really was the point... But here it is.There is a new insurance company on the market, called 'Ditzo'. Now 'Ditzo' has released a guerilla campaign in which they refer to all the other insurance companies as 'Datzo'. So instead of using the real competitors names, they've just chosen to use a collective name, associated to the name of their own company. Pretty clever!! The guerrilla campaign has now expanded to commercials on youtube where Ditzo makes it a little clearer how they think about Datzo insurances and why people should shift to Ditzo. They’ve also released a press report. Ditzo makes a few promises other insurance companies don’t (like when your car is total loss, you get a car equally to the one you had) so that’s how they differentiate. With a little over 1300 views in just one week I think the campaign can really become a hit. Now just wait and see if they can get people to sign up for their insurances! Thanks to: [...]

WP 2: About trends


When looking for trends for the final assignment of this minor, I ran into a nicely visualized trendwatch in the Adformatie.
The trend is called 'the Smaakmassa', which implies that 'design' nowadays is not just for people who can afford 'design', it's for everybody. Design should be part of everything, from everyday products to luxury goods.
Everything should look pretty, ugly is just old fashioned.
Take a look at the picture below!


WP1: Interesting means to practice narrowcasting


Since this really is the time to get deep into the subject of my thesis, I've been doing a lot of research about narrowcasting. Two applications caught my eye, because of the new visual way of reaching people.

The 3M Vikuiti Rear Projection Film
3M created a new application which consists of foils that are made of glass pearls and a beamer. The foil can be placed on a display (shopping) window and a beamer projects information on the back of the foil. This allows the retailer to show dynamic visuals on the display window.
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Mirror application by MagicDisplay
This mirror can be put in clubs, hotels, restaurants or any other place which has public mirrors. It looks like a regular mirror, if the person who looks in it is close enough to it. If the person changes his or her angle towards the mirror, the mirror changes into a display which can show advertisements.
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Dutch Design Week


Verslag Dutch Design week (geluid aan!)


End assignment: Rijksoverheid



Here are the links to our deliverables:
Handout (pdf)
Attachments (doc)

Goals Update


Old goals:

  • Challenge myself by doing not only the 1-point assignments. At the end of each quarter I want to have done at least 2 assignments for 2 points or more.
  • Work on Product Development for 20 hours on a weekly bases so that I will not have to do everything last minute at the end of a quarter.
  • Stay up to date of multimedia/ marketing trends by reading weblogs/magazines weekly. Post interesting messages on my blog.
  • For every assignment which includes generating ideas, generate at least 5 more than asked for, to learn how to get more ideas and to develop my creativity.
  • Apply the learned methods and theories when creating a concept from an idea
Additional goals:
  • Spend at least 3 of the 8 weekly postings for the winter season on my thesis subject
  • Write at least one essay about my thesis subject
  • Practice writing and ask for feedback to improve the level of my thesis
  • Read the books or parts of books I'm asked to read

Essay of choice: The broader view on narrowcasting


“Research agency GFK recently asked 2000 Dutch people their opinion about in store TV. (…) Almost half of the shopping people experiences this way of communication as annoying.”[1]Ever since the term ‘Narrowcasting’ was launched, it has been criticized; not only by consumers, but also at many marketing- and new technology blogs. Some people say that everybody can do it, some say that it’s overrated and others say it’s just another variety on the ‘-casting’ hype: bluecasting, podcasting, vodcasting; it’s just a load of new marketing terms without real added value. Can professional marketeers add value to narrowcasting?What is narrowcasting?Narrowcasting is the opposite of broadcasting: where broadcasting reaches a broad audience, narrowcasting is all about reaching a very specific target group at a specific place. Narrowcasting is not something revolutionary. It is a combination of multiple media (at least a screen and a computer) applied in a specific environment.SegmentsSo far retail is the biggest user of the technology in the Netherlands[2]; they are widely implementing it in their stores. From small applications with just one screen showing a simple PowerPoint presentation, to complicated multi-screen applications with other technologies integrated in the system. Recent numbers show an amount of already 15.000 screens in the Dutch stores[3]. It’s not so strange that retail has discovered the possibilities of narrowcasting. They already have a specific niche to market, know much about the niche and can make perfect fitting content to please their market. But retail is not the only segment which uses narrowcasting. The travel branch, catering industry and museums are just a few more examples of segments using narrowcasting.Content mattersThe most important aspect of narrowcasting is not the amount of screens or the complexity of the application. What really matters is the content of the screen[4]. Deciding the content of the screen comes with several risks. A consumer is for example not pleased seeing only advertisements. They might feel attacked by the very present -usually large- screens while they might prefer to shop quietly. The content shown on the screen(s) must have an added value for the customer’s shopping experience or the whole experience will just cause a negative association with the brand. When the shop owner can’t come up with anything more creative than just displaying advertisements on the screens, this is the moment to consult a professional marketeer. He can think of better ways to improve the shopping experience of the consumer. A good example of enriching customer experience is shown by Total. The gas stations show not only advertisements on the screens, but also information about the weather and the traffic. Since most people dropping by Total are on the road, this is definitely information they will appreciate.It can also be more complex. A good example is the Adidas Store in Paris. The narrowcasting solution is an integrated part of the formula of the store. The customer runs on a treadmill and after technology registered the run, it allows the customer to digitally try on different running shoes which fit their feet perfectly. This feature completes the customer experience.[5] Narrowcasting enriched with new technologies and customization… it’s all about having a broader view.There is nothing wrong for retailers to do a little do-it-yourself narrowcasting. Creative solutions do not per definition have to come from professional marketeers. The core of narrowcasting is that the shown content adds value to the customer’s shopping experi[...]

Weekly posting 8: How to raise a nation


(image) While working on the end assignment for this quarter, I noticed this message at Adfoblog.

Postbus 51 is the public service information centre in the Netherlands. It is part of the Government and in specific the Ministry of General Affairs.
Postbus 51 is especially know for its TV- and radiocampaigns. The name 'Postbus 51' comes from when the government opened one central mailbox for questions in the 50's: Postbus 51 in The Hague.

The TV and radio campaigns that Postbus 51 launches are mostly about 'raising' the Dutch people. A few examples of campaigns are: 'Drive with your heart', 'You smoke outside', separating garbage and "Bob jij of bob ik?" (about who is going to drive and not drink).

Every year when the budget of the Ministry of General Affairs is about to be discussed, the question rises whether the Postbus 51 campaigns are a waste of money or not. In the 'Tweede Kamer', many think it's useless, carping and expensive, says the 'Nederlands Dagblad'.

The critical CDA person Wim van de Camp says the campaigns are 'expensive operations and therefore we want to know who are reached and whether they have effect'. But, he doesn't want to dissolve Postbus 51. "We shouldn't go back to a neutral government like we had in the seventies. The government should be able to stimulate good behavior."

Some people, like Aad Muntz (72) who used to work for 'Centraal Beheer', say the messages in the campaigns should be more shocking to really affect people's behavior, like the Sire (independant foundation for idealistic commercials) campaigns. Other people say neither subtle or shocking commercials will affect people's behavior.
But what does affect people's behavior? I think personal experiences play a big role in whether people are willing to change their behavior. Imagine having lost a friend in traffic because of a drunk driver. It's not very likely you'll ever drive while being drunk. A campaign with shocking images can intensify this experience. Same goes for smoking, child abuse, fireworks etc. Experience + a little but of common sense should affect behavior, a campaign should work like a catalyst.

I think these campaigns should stay. Some with a shocking message, some with a teaching message. The context decides whether a person is touched. There is always one message for the right person at the right time. You can't expect everybody to be reached, but especially in these social subjects, every one person reached is one accident less. It's not a bad idea though to research numbers of the topics of the campaigns. This will only clarify what now is unknown and based on that, new decisions can be made to be more effective.

Weekly Posting 7: Web 93750892516584236.0


I was reading a short news article about Web2.0. The term Web3.0 was mentioned in the article as well; which didn't really surprise me.
Shortly summarized:
Web 1.0 was considered a 'read only' medium on which the content was written by organizations and companies
Web 2.0 evolves in a medium where communities and user generated content are the main characteristics
Web 3.0 (also known as the Semantic Web) is best explained by quoting Tim Berners-Lee who invented the term: "I have a dream for the Web [in which computers] become capable of analyzing all the data on the Web – the content, links, and transactions between people and computers. A ‘Semantic Web’, which should make this possible, has yet to emerge, but when it does, the day-to-day mechanisms of trade, bureaucracy and our daily lives will be handled by machines talking to machines. The ‘intelligent agents’ people have touted for ages will finally materialize." An example of how this would work can be seen here.

This was pretty much how much I knew. But then I saw the hyperlink about Web 4.0. I was curious so I clicked. Apparently Web 4.0 is a much talked about issue as well, having 105.000.000 hits on google and also mentioned at Seth Godin's blog. It's a really interesting article so if you have time, read it!

But then I started thinking...1.0, 2.0, 3.0, 4.0..... Where does it end?
So just for fun I started Googling Web 5.0, Web6.0 etc. Here are the results:
Web 5.0 - 86,5 million hits
Web 6.0 - 77.7 million hits
Web 7.0 - 57 million hits
Web 8.0 - 38,4 million hits
Web 9.0 - 13.8 million hits
Web 10.0 - 11,1 million hits

Apparently many people are involved in the development of the web and have many thoughts on it. Now I just need a few months get up to date... At least if Web 11.0 is not developed at that time...!

Weekly post 6: Adobe User Group Meeting


Wednesday October 10th I visited an Adobe User Group meeting in Amsterdam. Every once in a while these meetings are held for anyone who works with Adobe. Several professionals give readings, examples and demos about the subject of the meeting. This meeting was about (online) interactive video applications. The guest speakers were: Beamlab, Mark de Jong (Netmasters), Elvin Dechesne en Sander Riel (Satama Flash Fabriek), Waldo Smeets (Adobe) and Jorge Calleja (Wieden & Kennedy). Not too bad I think, because Satama Flash Fabriek were the ones who created “Het huis van morgen” (2005) and Jorge Calleja was creative director in the development of the very successful “Get the glass” campaign (6 million visitors to the website, a few million gallons of milk sold more the year after). You can see his portfolio here.

The whole meeting was about online interactive video and how flash video will play an increasing role in this development. Every aspect of interactive video was brought up; Adobe told us about new technologies and safety protocols, Netmasters talked about encoding methods, software and hardware and Satama told us what you need to create a successful video shoot to implement in an interactive flash application. According to this meeting interactive video is the future online. Take a look at (created/supported by Netmasters). With Mogulus, the internet, and a webcam, “along with your talent and passion to communicate” you can create your own online TV station. It’s like blogging but then with video. Of course there is a whole network implemented as well so you can see other stations too. User generated content at -yet- another level.

A new Adobe product was also presented by the Adobe speaker, Waldo Smeets. He presented the Adobe Media Player (see how it works). It’s a stand alone flash video player. The goal is to create a personalized TV experience on the computer. It works a little bit like RSS; with the help of a feed you can download (stream, you can’t put them on your local disk) all kinds of shows and movies you like. You can also download ahead, so that when you’re offline you can still watch them. You can completely personalize the looks of the player. The player also allows bannering in the downloaded shows (flash overlays), and even when the consumer watches the shows being offline, the statistics are saved (no. of clicks etc.). There was a question what the difference was between the Adobe Media Player and Joost. The biggest difference is that Joost works with the P2P system and the AMP works like an RSS feed.

Altogether it was a very interesting meeting, a lot of different points of view on online interactive video and much inspiration for new ways to apply this technology!(image)

Weekly Posting 5: Lost in networks


(image) An interesting post on Mr. Anderson's personal blog made me think about social networks. So far we have seen the development of many mass-socialnetworking websites. MySpace, Facebook and Hyves are all huge friend networks. Then of course there are the more professional networking website like LinkedIn and some smaller networks which are more branch-specific. It is actually strange that in a time where marketing is more and more about niches, and favorably one-to-one, there are these mass social networks. Users define their preferences, hobbies and characteristics and advertisers have to find their potential customers in the mass.
Chris Anderson puts social networking in a different perspective. He says: "Social networking is a feature, not a destination." He believes that when social networking becomes a standard feature on any good website which is focussed on a niche, the community will work best.

I understand mr. Anderson's point; on a niche market's website, there are usually people with the same interest for that specific niche. The chances are big there is a match between those people and so a community can become reality. I also believe that up to a certain level, this can work. For example if we look at traveling. If there is a specific company who organizes fishing holidays, I can imagine a social network on the website where people can exchange experiences, make recommendations, find partners to go on a holiday with, etc.

But I do wonder though if this will really be as successful as mr. Anderson thinks it will be. I really think it's limited to very specific markets. People do not have only one interest and I wonder if they would like to sign up for 30 different communities. One for their favorite shoe brand where they discuss the new designs, one for their favorite rice where they can make friends with people who all like the same rice and one for all people who brush their teeth with ToothpasteX. Lost in networks.

The thing that makes social networking interesting, is also discovering about other people's preferences; either in music, art, clothing, traveling or any other thing. Isn't that partly what keeps the Long Tail going? That people constantly keep discovering new things they've never heard of before, but like anyway? Mass social networks make sure this happens. I'm not so sure this is also happens in social networks for every niche market...

Weeky posting 4: Hot, hotter, hottest


(image) For me a real treat is to come home from a winter surf session, completely frozen, and then make myself a big mug of hot chocolate. So as a true hot chocolate lover of course the new commercial for the Chocomel Hot cup has caught my attention.
The newly developed cup and cupholder are, like the coffee- and teapad meant to be placed in Senseo or look-a-like machines. Luckily the Chocomel staff was smart enough not to develop pads; to prevent judicial problems.

And they've done more research. At the moment there's a trend that people want to bring high quality products into their own homes; think about the beertender, home cinema sets etc. Chocomel promises the consumer the same high quality hot chocolate as they're used to get when they go out to for example a restaurant. Add to that the consumer's need for more variety in hot drinks and it sounds like a success formula.

(image) For me the success factor won't be the ease of use. I don't mind dirty pans. The only thing that matters to me is the taste. I will buy, I will try, but whether I will keep buying it, depends completely on the question whether my homemade 2,25 spoon of cacao 1,75 spoon of sugar 0,05 l of cold milk and 0,3l of hot milk hot chocolate tastes worse than Chocomel Hot!

Weekly Posting 3: Mediaexperience 2007


(image) 1997 was the first year that there was a large Media experience investigation. With this investigation it is brought together how Dutch people experience different commercial and media expressions seen through different types of media. In 2004 the investigation was repeated and it is done as well this year. Below you can read the most important results summarized:

Viewing experience changes because of online TV
The current possibility to watch TV on the PC as well, has changed the viewing experience of the medium. 'Relaxing' and 'Entertaining' are more often attached to online TV than to the original TV. The cause of this development can be the choice the consumer has with online TV. The viewer can decide what he/she wants to see, and it is more likely the consumer will choose entertainment shows in stead of serious topics.

TV and magazines share first place identification In 2004 the TV was still on the second place, behind magazines concerning identification. The fact that they now share the first place is probably because of the personalization of the TV; the distance between channel and consumer appears to become smaller.

Magazines score on practical usability
Magazines have a higher score regarding practical usability this year. For background information the consumer rather consults a magazine than the internet. Two of the possible causes of this development can be the growth of the number of specialized magazines, or the debate about the reliability of the internet.
Media experience daily papers stable

Of all types of media, the daily papers still score best on information factor and 'touch' factor.

Internet as an entertainment medium.
The development of Web2.0 and it's user generated content has shifted the value of the medium internet. At the moment it is more used for entertainment of filling empty moment. It also generates more conversation topics. Social networks like Hyves and video sites like YouTube are part of this development.

The fieldwork took place from the 13th of June to the 7th of July 2007. 1493 Dutch people from 13 years and older are questioned for the Media experience investigation 2007.

Source: TNS NIPO/Veldkamp

Weekly Posting 2: The customer's message


The development of Web2.0 and it's most important characteristic 'user generated content' are a hot topic on the internet. The interaction between customer and company is much improved because of this development. That this could lead to many advantages for the marketing industry seems obvious, but the Canadian supermarket chain 'President's Choice' proves the advantage with a perfect example of gaining customer insights with the help of the online possibilities.

Customers of the supermarket chain can write online product reviews. While doing that they are asked if the information they supply can be freely used by P.C. As a result, customers can now read other customer's quotes in the supermarket right at the product itself. For example, a quote currently shown at the vegetarian lasagne: "Even my 17 year old, vegetable hating son loves it".

Naturally the store shows only positive product reviews. But to be taken seriously as a company, P.C. realized they had to use the negative feedback as well. So this is now forwarded to the product development department. As a result, products can be taken off the shelves and be improved very quickly.

I wonder if the quote technique would work in the Netherlands. Maybe we are just too 'cool' to be touched by dramatic sentences like that. Ratings might work thought. These are more to the point. The way they use the negative feedback is great though. It's an easy way of getting more customer insight and the PD department directly knows what part of the product should be improved.

Source: Emerce
Read the complete article hier

Weekly posting 1: Can I have your attention please?


Some people have troubles doing (powerpoint) presentations. That's fine; the only risk is that your audience falls asleep halfway. Of course you would like to prevent that from happening, so there are many solutions. Here's one of the original ones:
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Would you rather learn to make good powerpoint presentations to keep your audience awake? Check this out.

Thanks to Upstream.