I am traveling and living in Rio for the next two weeks and curating this newsletter for you from Brazil to share a combination of my favorite under appreciated stories of the week as well as a small second dose of Olympics marketing stories. Next week I’ll be traveling and taking a week off from producing this weekly email – but I’ll be back with more ideas and stories to share on August 25th. Until then, enjoy these stories and the Olympic Games – and follow me on Instagram @rohitbb if you’re interested in seeing a stream of more photos direct from Rio2016!
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Google’s Stunning New Tour Inside Rio’s Favelas
The favelas of Rio are one of the most often talked about yet infrequently experienced parts of the city. The area has its own ecosystem of just about everything, but the place is notoriously difficult to navigate for any outsider. This 360 degree tour is a rare glimpse inside a region most of us will never see for ourselves … a perfect use of technology to open access to a place none of us could otherwise have gone.
This New VR Headset Makes You Into A Pixar Character
If you have ever secretly longed to be a Pixar character, your dream may be coming close to reality. The new Veeso virtual reality headset is currently being funded on Kickstarter and offers full facial tracking to be able to map your real life emotions to an animated character inside a VR experience. The project still needs help to be fully funded but has over a week to go.
IKEA Pokes Fun At That One Annoying Social Media Habit We All Love To Hate
Our mobile devices may be causing us to adopt some very bad learned behaviours, but the good news is that some of them are almost universally reviled. Without giving away too much about this ad, it perfectly takes on one of them, ridicules it, and integrates it with a brand message that just perfect for IKEA. This should easily be an award winning ad, if the awards actually honor great creativity AND great strategy together.
How Nike Ruined Olympic Marketing Forever
This story explains why the IOC is so strict in it’s marketing rules. Perhaps not surprisingly, it is all because of ambush marketers (specifically Nike). The story struck me as an important reminder that any time we marketers complain about rules or how difficult it is for us to promote products and services … we should remember that it’s usually the worst among us who ruin it for everyone else. The lesson is simple: choose to be better than that.
Why Olympic Innovation Matters
For an Olympic “purist” like me, any technology applied unevenly on behalf of one team or another seems distinctly un-Olympian. This $25,000 racing cycle certainly qualifies as an unfair advantage, but reading the article also illustrates a silver lining in this extravagance. The big stage of the Olympics offers a perfect platform to inspire new innovation. The world needs big stages like these perhaps just as badly as it needs the innovation those stages incite. Even if it’s a stealthy looking bike that leans to the left.
How Are These Stories Chosen?
Every week I review more than a hundred data sources to curate the best and most under appreciated marketing stories of the week. The aim of this email is to spotlight these “non-obvious” stories, along with a quick take on why they matter for you. I hope you find this email interesting and useful … and am always open to your suggestions on how I might make it better!