Creativity in Public Relations » Uncategorized Creativity, marketing, great ideas, smart thinking, public relations, insights, inspirations, innovations and more. (Formerly known as Ryan's View) Wed, 05 Aug 2009 00:52:54 +0000 en hourly 1 I’m For Life Streaming (+ I’m Moving) Wed, 05 Aug 2009 00:52:54 +0000 Ryan Peal I’ve been reading a lot about life streaming and thought I’d jump right in – it was time for a change.  And a big change is happening with me already as in a few weeks I’m leaving my employer of more than 14 years – international public relations powerhouse, Hill & Knowlton – and moving to an international marketing powerhouse, Momentum.  At H&K I’ve worked all over the US – H&K Chicago, DC and LA offices – and for the past 3+ years have been at H&K Sydney, and for the past 1 ½ years serving as the company’s first (and hopefully not last) Asia-Pacific Creative Director – working across 9 offices with some of the best and the brightest in the business.  At H&K I have had the pleasure to work incredible colleagues and clients, and am lucky to have made lifelong friends that continue to rock my world.

But now, I’m heading to a new adventure, working with a company known for creating ideas that entertain and engage people in ways that span from physical to digital and everything in between.  It’s a company that embraces a “work is play; play is work” attitude, knowing creativity truly thrives and grows when people are simply having fun and working their brain power and imagination to the fullest.

So, with all that in mind, what better time to move to a whole new way to capture life’s moments of inspiration and fascination – the world of life streaming, and best brought to you by Posterous.   On my new Posterous Lifestreaming site ( that launched this week, I’ll continue the tradition of reviewing great campaigns and pondering how to make them better, hopefully encouraging everyone along the way to kick even bigger booty.  And I’ll be including a bunch of other stuff – cool things to check out, interesting interviews of some of the smartest marketers around and more – taking full advantage of this new medium. (Of course there are still brilliant people at H&K, find some new blogging inspiration at H&K’s blogging home here.)

I hope all of my readers from the past two years follow me to my new home.   Cross over children, come in to the light (nothing like a good Poltergeist movie quote to end an entry).

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Canon Photo Competition Zooms In On Charities Wed, 03 Jun 2009 07:34:34 +0000 Ryan Peal We all know a “picture is worth a thousand words,” but thanks to a new campaign from Canon Australia and New Zealand, a picture could be tens of thousands of dollars for your favorite charity. The new “Canon, Creative For A Cause” campaign launched today, grounded in the notion that a single photograph can represent the hopes, dreams or concerns of an entire community or nation or race. (Full disclosure: Canon is a client of H&K)

The campaign is a simple one (the best kind) on multiple fronts. Here’s how it works: visit the site, register (name/email), upload a photo, provide a title and a short description, and now the twist, select a charity you believe is visually represented by your photo and submit. A photo of a homeless person connected to the Hutt Centre working with the homeless definitely grabs your heart strings. And a cute dog reminding us all dogs need a home that Doggie Rescue could provide is another great one. Each definitely showcases the power that one image can have to tell a deeper, broader story.

Once registered you can browse photos and read stories that will make you laugh or cry or anything in between. And the fun part, you can vote for ones that really grab you and stop you in your tracks. The votes go toward awarding the related charity to the winning photo with some big bucks – $60,000 to an Australia one and $25,000 to one in New Zealand. Public votes select the final 24 and a celebrity judging panel picks the winners.

You can share your participation via Facebook, invite friends to vote for your favorite charities/photos and nominate new charities to be included on the site.

What can we learn from this campaign? One thing is certain, simple campaigns work. Everyone has a camera, knows how to take a picture or already has one they probably love – so it’s easy for everyone to enter. Next up, the charity component isn’t just a bolt-on to the effort, it’s grounded in the overall foundation of the campaign – there are lots of photo competitions but Creative For A Cause and the charity connection to each photo definitely sets it apart. Third, it’s easy to share the story of the campaign with your friends, so driving word-of-mouth to increase participation is natural.

It’s also important to note that the campaign directly connects to Canon – a company grounded in photos and making/sharing memories/emotions. Some campaigns can come across as a bit disconnected to the brand or a bit too “try hard.” And of course, my favorite part of this effort, there’s no sales job, no “buy this” no “check out the latest Canon product.” We all know brands need to “sell” products. With that said, the smart and confident brands know they also need to entertain and engage too. Thankfully Canon knows how to balance both needed areas, and thus, brought to life one of my favorite campaigns this year (again, I’m biased, but I think its true).

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1,000 Honda Hybrid Cars Light Up The Night Sun, 29 Mar 2009 18:35:49 +0000 Ryan Peal We’ve all seen the reports and research showing that advertising (especially TV) is losing the impact it once had back when there weren’t so many distractions and diversions.  And along with that we’ve seen the slow death of the :30 second commercial that has been the staple for most marketing plans.  But what seems to be making a comeback is the :60 second commercial, or the however-long-you-want short film commercial that benefits from the explosion of online video viewing sites such as YouTube.

The most recent example of a brand jumping into the longer video format is Honda who on Friday unveiled a new commercial for the company’s new Hybrid vehicle, Insight.  The company used headlights from 1,000 cars to create what probably is the world’s largest LED screen – creating a fun light show of smiley faces, highways and more.  Honda’s smart PR team ensured a “making of” video was included in the gameplan and shows a fun, behind-the-scenes perspective that adds a more personal element to the effort.  It’s a great reminder that sometimes the “making of” part of events, campaigns, commercials and everything in between can actually be equally interesting to watch. And in this case, the making of video adds a real human emotion and connection for Honda and this new environmental push.

So take a moment to drive into the fun with Honda below.

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Skittles Changes Entire Website to Social Media Mania Mon, 02 Mar 2009 10:11:09 +0000 Ryan Peal For me this is a big one – a milestone in the Twitterdom and social media in general.  Skittles today ditched its what-you’d-expect website to a twitter-skittles-search website, with a small little popup window with a shortened version of their website with all the regular stuff.  If you are already on Twitter then you know what a Twitter search page is; if you aren’t on Twitter (besides starting) you need to check out the Skittles website to get an idea what a Twitter search page is all about.  It basically shows in real time how Skittles are a part of someone’s day in real-time, when they decide to “tweet” on Twitter about Skittles – i.e., just had a Skittles and I love them so much.

Now the fun part.  Tomorrow the Skittles site may be the wikipedia entry, or the company’s Facebook fan page, or maybe a flickr photo album or Skittles YouTube channel.  Things will be constantly changing and rotating, simply providing a whole new look at Skittles through the social media world.

This is true creative thinking.  Hats off to the people behind the decision to go all-out social media and show how Skittles do naturally add a little bit of fun and color to our lives every day.  I’m betting more brands will do something similar or exactly the same.  Next time you are working hard to get something totally crazy off the drawing board and into reality show someone standing in your way this new site and say “take that!  crazy things can and do happen, now lets make our own brand history.”

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Australia Bloggers and Websites Ramp Up For Election Mon, 24 Sep 2007 08:08:00 +0000 Ryan Peal With the upcoming federal election in Australia only weeks away, the Australian blogosphere and websites in general are all getting in on the crystal ball prediction fun.  Even the gang here at H&K Australia is getting in on the act, with our own “Election Predictor” launching today.  Here are some of the larger “mega” tools that act like “complete guides” to the election.  There are plenty of smaller sites appealing to niche interests but these are the ones that I found that seem to be the most fun.  Who will win – Kevin Rudd, John Howard?  Check out these sites and gaze in to the online crystal ball world.  

The Election Predictor.  the fun part about the H&K site is that you can drill down to individual state or seats and split predictions according to state and shuffle things back and forth and everywhere in between.  You can then share your predictions with friends via Facebook or a simple email challenge.

YouDecide.  This site lets you write your own news about your electorate.

ABC and Antony Green.  All election fanatics know Antony’s work and will appreciate the incredible text detail here.


Crikey.  Punk rock politics finds its home on the web. 

FederalElection.  Designed to help you compare candidates and work out who you should support.

Rock The Vote.  This site is designed with the Gen X and Gen Y voters in mind.

Google.  Search for news, receive alerts, view candidate data against maps.


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MTV Video: New Asia Youth Stats On Music, Tech and Life Thu, 14 Jun 2007 10:01:00 +0000 Ryan Peal A friend of mine attended a very cool trade show called Music Matters in Hong Kong last week, where the topic was all-things-music and how to infuse music into the marketing mix in a compelling and interesting way. While I wasn’t in attendance you can find out more about it from our friends at CNET.
What I can share below is a great video that MTV put together to share at the conference, highlighting some of the stats of the youth living in Asia. The video starts off by saying that of the 3 BILLION people in the world under the age of 25, a shocking 61% of them live in some parts of Asia.

There is a very cool website called simply that cover this phenomenon on a daily basis. These guys teamed up with MTV to highlight some interesting insights into this audience, including TV viewing habits, amount of time spent online, gaming use, mobile phone usage and more. It’s worth the “159 seconds” of your life to watch the video below.
Anyone else who knows of a great place to find youth stats please let me know – always on the look out.

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In-The-News: The New Microsoft Surface Computer – Hot Fri, 08 Jun 2007 10:17:00 +0000 Ryan Peal If you haven’t already head about it – stop what you are doing and check out this video on CNET with a very cool demo of Microsoft’s New “Surface Computer” that was unveiled yesterday. Ever since Tom Cruise used one in Minority Report I have been waiting for someone to make it real. It’s a uber-touch screen experience, with amazing possibilities including some very cool applications with sharing photos and videos and simple drawing too. The video shows some really cool possibilities in a restaurant setting, and I have to think these have to be fast-laned for the casinos too.

Now imagine one of these at retail, providing a variety of new ways consumers can learn about a product they are considering. And what if you are buying a new mobile phone, imagine just placing your new phone on one of these computers and automatically load it up with new songs and videos before you even leave the store. You could easily see meeting a hotel attendant around one of the new surface computers, selecting your room and simply placing your credit card on the surface and paying direct.

I love when new technology shows-up and then your brain can’t help but think of a million new ways to change everything that has happened before.

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"Put a sledgehammer to your computer" campaign (from PC-maker Lenovo) Fri, 27 Apr 2007 09:45:00 +0000 Ryan Peal The gang over at Lenovo recently launched a new campaign to highlight the companies tough ThinkPad notebooks and ThinkCenter desktops that go through rigorous drop and pressure tests and even extreme temperature tests.  All this is necessary because we all know how bad we treat our own laptops!  The campaign has been kick-started by a funny “security camera” video showing the average worker getting more and more upset with his computer, eventually doing what we all want to do – pulling out the ol’ sledgehammer and having some fun!  The video is on YouTube and on a separate campaign sitelet

I’m hoping phase two includes some type of consumer contest – send in your own videos destroying your computers and you’ll be entered to win a new one of ours.  Yes, there may be some legal challenges to overcome, but the videos would drive lots of buzz for Lenovo (the cool factor would have to shoot up for any company who encourages consumers to break things) and steers the conversation to Lenovo’s tough computers.  

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