Content Master: The Morton Arboretum

Monday, November 21st, 2016

As the leaves of autumn give way to the bare branches of winter, the Morton Arboretum is a place of both refuge and inspiration. The preserve west of Chicago has a well-deserved reputation as a destination for hiking and bicycling amid the trees, ponds, and fields that comprise the 1,700-acre grounds. ...

Movie Trailers Shine As Digital Stars

Friday, February 26th, 2016

With the 2016 Academy Awards fast approaching, Google has created a terrific piece of event-based content by ranking the popularity of the trailers for the Oscar Best Picture nominees. Google ranks The Revenant Number One based YouTube trailer views, which is ironic given that a trailer promoting a film made ...

Snapchat and Vine: The Disruptor and Disrupted

Thursday, January 21st, 2016

Remember when Vine was cool and Snapchat was dirty? How quickly their fortunes have changed. Vine, once the darling of visual storytellers, is losing brands and attention, sinking in popularity on the app store. Meantime, Snapchat has overcome its reputation as a fringe app run by a badly behaving frat ...

6 Predictions for Music Streaming

Friday, November 14th, 2014

Forget Taylor Swift's futile Spotify boycott. The real news emerging from the music industry this week was the launch of YouTube's streaming service. The new service consists of YouTube with streaming functionality (as opposed to being a new product with a different name, thus benefitting from YouTube's brand reach). On ...

Apple Pays Dearly for U2’s “Free” Music

Friday, September 12th, 2014

Photo credit: Marcio Jose Sanchez, AP Let's get something straight: U2 did not give away its new album, Songs of Innocence. To be sure, if you have iTunes, on September 9 you received a free copy (without asking for it) of Songs of Innocence. But Apple paid U2 an undisclosed amount ...

Four Lessons from “Harlem Shake”

Thursday, April 4th, 2013

Now that "Harlem Shake" fever has finally subsided, I think it's instructive to ask what lessons are to be learned from the wildly popular song that created a cultural sensation. Was "Harlem Shake" just a fluke? Can its success be duplicated by someone else? As we've seen with just about ...

Slash defines a new kind of cool

Monday, January 16th, 2012

A few nights ago, I was hanging out with my 10-year-old daughter Marion and her fifth-grader friend Emma as they took turns showing each other their favorite YouTube videos on a laptop. They surfed from one video to the next as children do, giggling their way through goofy stuff like ...

Netflix wants to own your entertainment

Wednesday, March 16th, 2011

According to Deadline Hollywood, Netflix has become a content creator (not just distributor) by outbidding HBO and AMC to underwrite the production of House of Cards, a 26-episode drama series directed by David Fincher. Deadline Hollywood says that the deal (probably worth more than $100 million) is for Netflix "probably the ...

How do you build a digital brand?

Thursday, August 13th, 2009

How do you build a digital brand -- one that lives up to digital's potential for immersion and personalization?   The following two recent Razorfish client launches highlight the roles of creativity and technology -- and demonstrate some of the nuances of branding the digital way. Billboard Billboard posed an interesting challenge ...

Online, offline converge in new marketing campaign

Monday, April 6th, 2009

How do you make laundry detergent fun? My employer Razorfish tackled this challenge when we helped all® detergent create a promotion that aired April 5 on Celebrity Apprentice.  Instead of focusing on product attributes, we associated all® with a charitable cause through viral marketing.  Celebrity Apprentice viewers saw a 30-second TV ...