The second day of the HALLS immersion at Dailybreak began with a Boston staple, Dunkin’ Donuts, after which we were ready to roll up our sleeves and start working. We dived deep into the current desktop format of the Dailybreak Challenges and had to test some of the programs out for ourselves to really understand how effective they were. After testing the Dailybreak model firsthand and walking through examples of other successful programs, we realized that we had an existing, non-MOBILE FUTURES related project that needed to be turned around quickly, and that Dailybreak could help us solve it! What luck! We briefed the content creation team on the program and set them to work on turning around a proposal for review later that day. We saw true entrepreneurial spirit as the team quickly engaged to help us with this program then align to the process to divide and conquer. The rest of the team then continued to engage in creating synergies with the Dailybreak mobile app launch (set for late Q1) with the HALLS communication strategy. The mobile team walked us through their capabilities and their timing with regards to launching each new technology throughout the year. After a hard day’s work, we stayed at the office to play some games and enjoy Regina’s Pizza, another Boston staple. We saw the fun and competitive spirit that it takes to be part of a startup company]]>
I came into the office today already feeling like a member of the team. I took my seat at what is now “my desk” and immediately started joking and bantering with everyone. What a relaxed and fun environment they have! There was relaxing jazz music on the speakers, which was quickly identified as way too relaxed. The CEO yelled he hated it and everyone laughed.
We were all doing our own work and throwing ideas back and forth about various topics including the trial we want to put in market. Very exciting (and a bit foreign in the brand world) to think we can mock something up and execute it so quickly. The guys showed me a mock of our ideas they had already put together. I can’t believe how fast that was! We got on the phone with the team back in East Hanover to talk through the best way to set up the test and introduced the Waze team to the world of Mondelēz International, and what it’s like working at a global company. It was clear it was eye opening to them.
The entire team went out to a fun lunch. On the way back to the office we stopped by a coffee shop that brews each cup customized for you. We came back to the office and caught up on emails, chatting, sharing and bantering throughout. Then we all convened in the conference room for a more formal brainstorming session. The day wrapped when a few people had to head out to industry events. We all left with a lot of energy and enthusiasm about picking up tomorrow.]]>
The Kiip New York office is under renovations, so we had our meeting in a temporary space. We spent the day really hammering out the details of our MOBILE FUTURES pilot program. We planned a robust test-and-learn program for Feb-Mar to try out all of our ideas to see what works best for our larger program in Q3 of this year. We’d like to play with the concept of rewards, and understand how me might put a non-traditional spin on things, given our brand’s unique equity. We are also interested in testing out leading edge integrations with iOS tools and services, as well as how we can make everything we do sharable between friends. We had another great dinner that night at Beauty and Essex in New York—Shawn joined us from the brand team as well as Brian, Chris, Eric, Nolan, and Catherine from Kiip. It was great to have the whole extended team together!
The final day of our immersion was spent at the Mondelēz International offices, and it was really just to tie up loose ends. By the end of the day we all felt really good about the program we had created. There were still some outstanding questions—particularly around retailers and the online offer, but in general we all felt ready to begin. In true startup fashion, we were ready to begin ASAP!]]>
It was no surprise that the Banjo team was impressed with the power of the Oreo equity. In particular, the recent “Daily Twist” activation showed how relevant and engaging real-time Oreo content can be (and that’s without having to include any type of offer!). Which begs the question, what are the right KPIs in mobile? Banjo believes that the current mobile advertising has been a poor translation of banner ads that hardly work in digital. In other words, banner ads are a nuisance.
Banjo believes that creating deep and engaging experiences is the only way to create meaningful relations with consumers. To that end, Banjo has found that their users are engaging in their platform for over 4 minutes at a time. That’s over 6x longer than the mobile industry average (and much longer than a 0:30 second TV spot!). The question now is how can Oreo be part of that experience?]]>
My second day at Shelby started with a debrief of the Chips Ahoy! 2013 marketing priorities and moved to ideating around our specific pilot program. Chris (head of product and partnerships) immediately had an idea around our college basketball partnership and ways we can leverage the massive amounts of video that our consumers are already sharing and viewing during this time. As we mapped out our ideas (just about everything at Shelby starts on a whiteboard), team members casually came in and out and shared their two cents. Getting a fresh set of eyes was incredibly helpful. We were shooting for the stars, so every time we thought we had the craziest, most outrageous idea, another team member came in and topped it. Dunking a celebrity in a dunk tank filled with milk? I’d say that sounds like sharable content! Later in the day, we looked at timing to ensure they could execute each idea in the necessary time frame, and flawlessly. Another jam packed day that produced a ton of inspiring and innovative ideas!]]>
I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, and quite honestly, because Banjo’s technology is so flexible and powerful, I didn’t know where Oreo would even begin to get started! Perhaps that was the beauty of why Oreo chose to work with this up-and-coming location-based startup. This wasn’t the familiar territory of Facebook or Twitter. The fear of the unknown was absolutely thrilling. There was a fundamental belief that being uncomfortable meant we were truly going in to unknown territory.
Banjo allows users to explore what’s happening anywhere in the world in real time. Why? Because people are curious by nature. People have a fear of missing out (FOMO), especially regarding the people, places and interests that are most relevant to them. It was inspiring to see such a young company dream bigger than its technology and capabilities. For Banjo, it wasn’t about aggregating social networks; rather it was a dream to cure the world of FOMO. With such a strong ambition and vision, it was an exciting Day 1 knowing that Oreo and Banjo were in the early stages, and #anythingispossible]]>
Representing the brand team, Chandra Chantim and I flew out to San Francisco to visit the Kiip headquarters. Tuesday morning we walked over to the office, which is in a converted garage/loft space next to an auto-detailing shop. We arrive at 10am, but the office is still pretty quiet—many of the 25 San Francisco Kiip employees (particularly the developers) often come in later in the morning (as they typically work until midnight or later). The garage works well for Kiip since so many of the employees ride in on their motorcycles and park inside the garage doors. We are warmly welcomed by the awesome office manager and “queen-of-many-hats,” Charisse, who gives us a quick tour and immediately makes us feel comfortable. We are welcome to any of the abundant snacks and the breakfast du jour (my favorite was Waffle Wednesdays). We meet Chris and Eric who are from the New York office and are to be our main points of contact throughout the process. We spend most of the day doing a complete download of all things Kiip, then all things Sour Patch. Brian Wong, the ever-energetic and charismatic founder/CEO, comes in and out as his schedule allows. Both teams hit it off really well from the get-go and we are able to establish a great rapport. By the end of the first day we were already bouncing ideas off of each other for our new program.
Tuesday night we went out to dinner at 25 Lusk with both co-founders—Brian and Courtney, as well as Chris and Eric. The next two days we meet many other members of the team and learn more about what each function does—Business Development, Technical developers etc. This helps us to understand what we can and cannot do with our program. It definitely feels like both the Kiip team and the Sour Patch team are eager to push the envelope and develop a program that is outside the box for everyone. Wednesday night, the Kiip team brings in a mixologist to make Sour Patch-themed drinks for the office happy hour. Ed joins us on Wednesday night dinner and Thursday. I was definitely a bit sad to leave San Francisco on Thursday night, but look forward to the rest of our journey together!]]>
I arrived at the Waze office around 9am for the first day of my startup immersion. The office is in a store front right in downtown Palo Alto. You just walk in off the street to one big open room with a giant table upon which individual desks have been identified by computer monitors. The 9 US employees of Waze sit and work here every day. Hip-hop music is playing, not too quietly, throughout the whole place. They gave me a “tour” in which they showed me the conference room they use to sleep in, both naps and overnight on a fairly regular basis, and a larger conference room where we would spend most of the rest of the day sharing information about our brands and cultures.
Breakfast came and we all casually got food and gathered in the conference room. People came in and out throughout the day and it was very casual in approach and schedule. The team was incredibly open and we were all excited by the information we were able to share, and the potential of what we can learn and do by overlapping the information we have and the ability to work together. We ventured next door for lunch and continued to get to know one another and the work ahead of us.
Though we didn’t plan to brainstorm on day one, we were all so energized by what was being shared that we naturally began to brainstorm and ended the day with a small test we decided to execute in market immediately! We were very excited to take action and get some quick learnings, moving at the “speed of startup.” I am excited and encouraged by the opportunity and the experience.]]>