Creativity

Why it’s tough to be creative at work

Have you ever been called into a brainstorm and thought I’ve got so much on my plate today, I just can’t face being creative. Or when you do come up with an idea, do you feel it’s nitpicked so badly it becomes unrecognizable from what you first proposed? According to Duncan Wardle, VP of Creative Inc. (part of Disney’s Destination Marketing group), you’re not alone. He says most good ideas get either completely watered down or killed as they move through an organization. 

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Cable access TV

Livestream video – a new take on cable access TV

Let’s rewind to the end of the last century. Back then, you’d find user-generated content in home videos or on community access TV. And the quality was…um…why don’t we say it was local-in-the-extreme. Sometimes you might discover a talented host like Tom Green, at the beginning of their career. But he was the exception, not the rule. Fast-forward to 2016 and easy access to livestream video. Now it’s not only our own cable shows, we have our very own channels — 24/7. On Periscope, Blab and now Facebook Live, you can find people talking into, pointing at or swirling around pretty much anything.

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Martin Waxman on Twitter changes

Twitter turns 10 and the tweets just keep on comin’

I remember when I first set up my twitter account in March 2007 just after the company turned one and was all the rage at SXSW. I don’t mind saying how nervous I felt. At the time, Twitter seemed like the great big unknown to me. And while I was fascinated, I didn’t understand how it worked and got too hung up on the literal idea of followers. Why would anyone want to follow me when I hadn’t said anything? I came to the conclusion it was both dumb and a mess.

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serendipity and small data

Serendipity and the creative power of small data

Big data is all around us. You can sense it – or rather, it senses you. We may even be heading toward a data singularity, a time in the not so distant future when sensors all around us will send vast amounts of information to a centralized source to learn and adapt in real-time. There are positive aspects to this development including traffic lights that are recalibrated based on the number of cars on the road, accidents or weather conditions. And there are negative aspects too – as in another loss of privacy. We’re obsessed with big data and trends based on the repeated…

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Multimedia - new AV cart

What’s on the new AV cart?

Whenever someone mentions multimedia, I automatically think of those nondescript grey metal A/V carts of my high school and university days. (I know I’m dating myself here.) They’d always hold a messy assortment of what was then hi-tech: 16MM film projector, slide projector, TV/VCR combo and a bunch of cords. And while I liked the idea of multimedia, I never imagined myself as the person behind the cart.

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training

Five things I learned in 2015

I’ve always been a major consumer of content. Like most PR pros, I’m a media junkie, that is, passionate about news. I used to start my days poring over five papers, listening to radio and watching TV. In recent years, that’s been turned into more of a social media addiction. (I’m trying to control it, really…) I read, click, share, work, read, work, share, create — though creation takes me a lot more time because it’s “deep work.” More on that below. 

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PR by the micro-moment part 2

PR by the micro-moment – moment 2

Not too long ago, I had the pleasure of attending a Google-sponsored breakfast on micro-moments – those ‘I want to know/go/do/buy’ impulses we all experience when we have a question and impulsively reach for our smartphones to find what we’re looking for. For many of us, it’s become a reflexive response. Google’s talking about these a lot lately – and with good reason – it has identified micro-moments as one of the key trends in our path to purchase.

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Micro-moments in PR

PR by the micro-moment – moment 1

Does this sound familiar? You’re reading, working, talking to a colleague or friend, sitting in a restaurant, waiting for a bus. All of a sudden you’re seized by an overwhelming impulse to find something out. NOW! Maybe it’s the title of a movie, the name of a hotel in New York or the person who built the Lego skyscraper installation on Bloor Street. And before you know it, you instinctively reach for your smartphone, as if nothing else mattered. And you start tapping.

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don't be an idiot on twitter

Stop making dumb mistakes on Twitter

One thing I like best about Twitter is the serendipity of the stream. Just dip in and if you’re following the right people, you never know what you’ll find. Of course along with the good comes the seemingly endless gaffes, missteps and just plain public errors. And while they’re entertaining to watch – if you’re not on the receiving end – they’re a needless reputation smudge both for organizations or individuals. 

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Words Pictures, Dynamic Duo of Content Marketing

Words and pictures: the dynamic duo of content marketing

If there’s such a thing as a one-two punch in content marketing, I’d say it’s a seamless blending of words and pictures. That’s nothing new, of course. Comic artists have done that for ages. So if text and visuals are the dynamic duo, the Batman and Robin of content marketing so to speak, where do the other characters in the franchise fit in? Here are several content takeaways and tips from the Caped Crusader and his colourful band:

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