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Trump or Kittens – Innovatie

Monday, January 23rd, 2017

Happy Monday ladies and gentlemen


Welcome to this slightly later than scheduled episode of Innovatie.


In case you missed it, the world as we know it officially came to an end on Friday. The times they are a-changin’. So is it sink or swim? Adapt or die? How about we take a leaf out of the new POTUS’s book, and only see the things we want to see instead! #alternativefacts


What if, instead of having to look at Trump’s picture all over the internet, you could look at something cute and fluffy instead? Well… There’s a Chrome Extension for that. Here at Viz HQ, we’re an office of Momentum-lovers (if you don’t have it – scarlet for ya – get with the programme and get it here), but there’s now a new player in town. Make America Kittens Again is an extension you can put on your Chrome browser that will replace all pictures of the US President with pictures of cute little kitty cats. Naawwwwwwwww.


Bound to cheer anyone up I think.


In general though, this is just yet another example of the growing trend of people being in more control of what they consume. Which I think at the start we all saw as a good thing – I personally don’t want to see Breitbart on my newsfeed, for example – but in actual fact it’s made everyone’s world a lot smaller, and also made people believe that everyone thinks the same way as they do. This is why so many of us got such a shock with Brexit and Trump: if you only ever see your own ways of thinking reflected back to you, it’s very very hard to believe there are many others out there that don’t share your world view. Obviously this one is just a bit of craic, but it reflects an interesting global trend that probably deserves a lot more discussion than it’s currently getting here in Ireland. It’s more a media owner topic than an agency one, as the responsibilities for journalistic integrity and balanced reporting lie with them and not us, but sure isn’t it good to be in the know? As a member of the industry, but also as a citizen.


So there you have it, folks. Isn’t it mad to think that despite all the different information, opinions and ways of life that are out there, almost all of us automatically default to what we know already. Better the devil you know, maybe.

Side note: This is also potentially a reason for why people stay in bad relationships (quality is not great on that video, but very funny nonetheless, give it a go).


Until next time

In kittens we trust



P.S.: I feel I have to do due diligence here and inform you there is a way to have a Kardashian-free internet (why you’d want that, I do not know… Takes all kinds I suppose). Another Chrome extension, which you can get here.



BBC Three – Innovatie

Friday, December 2nd, 2016

OKAY boys and girls (is what Gay used to say on the Toy Show)


So, some of you may know that I spent some time as a TV buyer, but what you may not know is that TV is one of my all-time F A V E things in the whole wide world. I was glued to the box growing up, much to my poor mother’s dismay. I was a chunky child* and this may or may not have been a contributing factor.

*I was a walking chicken nugget


Anyway, there’s been a lot of movement in the TV biz in Ireland over the last while. Virgin buying out basically everyone that’s not a semi-state body, Maximum Media making moves to become a broadcaster, the rise and rise of VOD… But I think we can all agree that a lot of great broadcasting comes out of the UK. And although at times it can be seen as restrictive and stuffy, the BBC does do some amazing work in this area.


In particular, I think BBC Three is to be admired, whose sole remit was to provide innovative content to a 15-34 demo. Unlike its commercial rivals, 90% of BBC Three’s output was home-grown. 70% was original, covering all genres, including animation, comedy, current affairs, and drama. In February this year, the powers that be decided to take BBC Three off television and have it live solely online. There was a little bit of uproar at the time; they didn’t make that decision because they were trying to be innovative – the station’s budget had been slashed by half, and by moving the station to online-only, the BBC would save £30m in TV transmission costs. But it’s actually worked out quite well: BBC Three’s content has become some of the most requested on the BBC iPlayer. They’ve even made the content available for a year, whereas the rest is only listed for 30 days. But even at that, the majority of requests are made within the first few weeks of content going live.


BBC Three is now free to try its hand at so much more than it could have if it was still stuck in the linear TV format and the restrictive budgets that go along with that; such as video, written editorial and even podcasts. Now, there’s still some way to go – the content on the iPlayer can be hard to find, and the interface on the site isn’t great (but they’re working on it); plus people are still viewing players in general as catch-up services (as opposed to Netflix where they go to seek out new content). So work needs to be done to change that mind-set.


But all that aside, they have one huge advantage – a deep understanding of their audience; which as we all know, is one that’s incredibly hard to reach and even harder to engage with in any sort of meaningful way. But BBC Three are poised in prime position (ahhh alliteration) to reap the benefits of this, as it looks to its own future and the future of an ever-evolving broadcasting landscape.


While advertising on the BBC will likely never, ever happen (and to be honest, I think it should stay like that), it’s always fascinating to see what big players in the media and communications industry are doing, how they are diversifying, and how they future-proof their business.


On a loftier note, it’s also a reminder that sometimes out of really grim situations (like having to cut costs), comes true innovation and even success (even if that particular success is a different kind than before).


Peace and love to one and all on this (almost) Christmas afternoon



Totes Emosh – Innovatie

Friday, October 21st, 2016

Happy Friday, folks!


Innovatie has been live for almost 4 months. Can you believe it?? Pure madness. Where does the time go?


Sure look, says you. And sure listen, says I.


Anyway, this week’s innovation is all about your F E E L I N G S. “What are those?” I hear you say… Good question – being Irish, most of us have spent 20+ years pushing those awful things as far away as possible. But the times they are a-changing, and finally people are waking up and realising being one with your inner thoughts and emotions is a positive thing.


And no, this is not where I tell you to be true to yourself and follow your dreams. Marketing makes the world go round (obvs) so without further ado, I give you “the future of marketing”: Emotion Detection.


At the most basic level, it’s just a further advancement of dynamic advertising: instead of an ad message changing based on just audience data, it changes in real-time based on the emotional reaction of the person experiencing it, using AI & facial recognition. Simples! And soon the technology to enable it will come to fruition – big names in the business have already injected some serious capital into research in this particular field. Apple has been interested for years already, and have already acquired Emotient (a tech company specialising in emotion recognition); and Nielsen have bought Innerscope, which uses biometrics to measure subconscious emotional responses to media and marketing (slightly creepy). Big brands such as Coca Cola, Unilever and P&G have been engaging in emotion analysis to test audience reaction to their comms, too.


Even if you look at Facebook: Reactions are currently treated in the same way as Likes, but that is definitely going to evolve; with different Reactions being weighted differently. For example, Love is more important than Like, and so on (side note: if you don’t know what the difference between like and love is, you might want to refresh your memory with this gem).


Eventually, it could become commonplace that advertising is so personalised that no two people will experience the same ad in the same way… Ever. Cool, right? Not only is it cool in the technological sense, it’s also brilliant from a creative point of view – everyone knows the best and most effective ads are the ones that evoke an emotional response. The article I read on HubSpot calls out 3 long-term campaigns (I’d go as far as to call them full brand strategies) that really showcase the power of emotive advertising: Dove’s “Real Beauty” (I know we’ve all heard: “we want to be like Dove but we have €5k and want to have a spot in the Late Late and also we want go viral but you have to admit it’s been a ground-breaking campaign that has inspired many copy-cats – imitation is the sincerest form of flattery), Nike’s “Just Do It”, and Mastercard’s “Priceless”.


I’d encourage everyone to read the article – It’s long, but it is interesting.


For the moment we’re probably a few years off seeing this being used in day to day advertising, but it’s definitely one to watch.


Thanks for reading guys!


Same time, same place next week


Facebook Secret Messages – Innovatie

Friday, October 7th, 2016

Hello and a happy Friday to you all (only if you’re reading this on a Friday, obvs… otherwise, just hello).


This week’s innovation is hot off the presses and continues along what appears to have become a theme running through a lot of my Innovaties… Internet creepin’.


Ladies and gents, I give you… Facebook Secret Messages! Now, I’m not condoning any sort of bold behaviour, but I think we all know what this feature is going to be used for: cheating and nudes.*


Basically, you can now have secret convos in FB Messenger that can be set to self-destruct. Worst thing to happen to relationships since Snapchat’s “best friends” feature? Potentially. Most hilarious thing about it? This actual description from Facebook’s blog of what it’s going to be used for:

“We’ve heard from you that there are times when you want additional safeguards — perhaps when discussing private information like an illness or a health issue with trusted friends and family, or sending financial information to an accountant.”






So I’m sure some of you are sitting there wondering how to set it up how it actually works and the technology that powers it, so here’s a link to the article from Wired:


As always, one of the key components of Innovatie is to suggest a way for brands to use the featured innovation. So… how are brands going to use this? I think it would be really useful for promoting invite-only events, members-only websites, etc., and would be perfect for any brand that wants to appear “exclusive”.


Unfortunately, I think that’s about as much craic I’m going to be able to knock out of this one, folks.


Love is dead



*I do not send nudes, just to be clear.


Snap Inc. Spectacles – Innovatie

Friday, September 30th, 2016

Before we get stuck in, I just want to flag that this is week’s Innovatie is verrrry P R E D I C T A B L E, but I just think they are so so cool, I couldn’t resist. So, without further ado, I give you… SNAP SPECTACLES!


In case you’ve been living under a rock, Snap Inc. (new name for Snapchat) have decided to enter the wearables space with a pair of snap-recording sunglasses. “But wait!” I hear you say, “aren’t they just copying Google Glass?” Well, that’s an interesting point my friend, but you’d be wrong there. These shades are basically the opposite of Google Glass.


First of all, they’re fun. They’re going to come in three different colours and basically look like something you’d pick up in a souvenir shop on your hols. Evan Speigal even refers to them as a toy. Secondly, they’re cheap (compared to Google Glass, which launched with a retail price of $1,500), costing less than a pair of Ray-Ban aviators, at $129. Finally, the whole point of the Spectacles is not to make progress in technology, or change how we interact with the world… All they are for is recording your Snap videos and uploading them directly to the app. Oh, and before your inner creep gets too excited, they will have little lights on the front that will flash to indicate recording. Check out the video here:


All that aside, Spiegs is cautious: only a small number are going to be produced to begin with, and they will be rolled out slowly to see how they land. Now of course there’s a chance that these will be a complete flop, but all Snap Inc. needs is for the shades to stay cool for long enough to get us mugs buying a pair in the hopes of coming the next James Kava (cos we’re all gas b*tches).


For brands, I see two main possibilities: Firstly, they could give pairs to their consumers at events / to influencers to capture footage and push this out as part of comms. Secondly, further down the line, wouldn’t it be cool for a brand to do a partnership with them?? I’m thinking S P E C T A C L E S  x R A Y – B A N. Remember, you heard it here first.


So in conclusion, I can’t wait to get my hands on a pair.


That’s all folks

Same time, same place next week


Remember, be good. And if you can’t be good, be careful



Tinder x Spotify – Innovatie

Friday, September 23rd, 2016

Dark days, folks. Dark days.


Brangelina is no more. Such a mixed bag of emotions, isn’t it? Vindication for some. Sadness, shock and surprise for others (told you there’d be alliteration). Regardless of your feelings, I think we can all agree on one thing: Jennifer Aniston definitely had a little lol to herself.*


Anyway, this week’s innovation is bound to cheer you (single) people right up. Tinder and Spotify are teaming up to help you “make a little music with someone new”. Are you reading into that? I know I am…


Basically, Tinderonians will be able to include their fave tunes on their Tinder profiles. Now if that’s not a good reason to swipe right, I don’t know what is. At the very least, it’ll help users cut through potential one night stands future life partners and pick someone who likes 90s hip hop as much as they do. Although let’s be honest, who’s not partial to a bit of 90s hip hop ?


For more info (and a ridiculous video), check out this article


Of course I’d say you’re all wondering what my #TinderAnthem would be… If I had to pick a song of the moment, it would have to be this A$AP Rocky tune. Betcha you thought it was gonna be this one didn’t you? #sobasic


An old school one I never get sick of? Please see here. Anyone noticing a pattern?


Finally, anyone care to hazard a guess on what tunes Brad is gonna have up on his Tinder??



That’s all from me this week, friends. Same time, same place next Friday.


Lots of love,



*Only joking. Although… #iloveyoubrad #callme #cantfindmeontinder




Cover pic:


Odds by Adidas – Innovatie

Friday, September 16th, 2016


Does Daddy wanna have breakfast with you or what??? Come onnnnnn


We’ve been heavily involved in some vintage Tommy Tiernan here in Vizeum HQ recently, so anyone that hasn’t seen Tommy Tiernan Live (2002), I’m sorry, you definitely won’t get that.


So, most of the innovations that are shared tend to be really tech-focused, but every so often, it’s interesting to see something really simple (like the Orangina example) that’s making an impact on people’s lives. Also something that has little to nothing to do with advertising (like the Luas Dinosaur game – see But it has come from one of the world’s biggest brands, so… They did make an ad about it, obvs. #advertisingmakestheworldgoround #weloveads


Adidas have created a special edition set of runners, called “Odds”. A unique pair of the same shoe, 2 lefts or 2 rights put together, as an ode (great word) to all the para-athletes across the world. You can read more about it and watch a really great ad that was created by Taproot Dentsu in India here: If you watch this video and immediately aren’t inspired to get your lazy adland a*se out of your seat and hit the gym or go for a run, you’re either a) already drunk cos it’s the freekin weekend or b) completely dead inside which is also possible after a few years in this biz.


***kind of***

***not really***

The guy featured in this video is, quite literally, a hero. Major DP Singh has ran over 18 marathons and is India’s first blade runner… Even though he was declared dead after being seriously injured while serving in the army in 1999. Feel like an underachiever yet? You can read more about him here:

Also, if you’ve never watched “The Last Leg” on Channel 4, I highly recommend you do. They’ve done unreal coverage of the Olympics and Paralympics, and the lads are A B S O L U T E L Y  G A S  C R A I C.

I wish I had an inspiring quote to sign this off with, but unfortunately I have a heart of stone and my blood runs cold, so…


Until next time, friends




Ted Baker Shoppable Video – Innovatie

Wednesday, September 14th, 2016

Well hello there boys & girls! Welcome to the latest installment of Innovatie!


So… the iPhone 7!


Like I’d ever be that predictable.


No, today it’s all about… VEGAN PIZZA!

Also jokes…

Where do I like to keep you? (answer: on your toes!)


Fun fact: Innovatie loves clothes. So this week I’m delighted to share something futuristically fashionable (well hello there alliteration) with you.

See below a very lovely pink dress. It’s the prettiest thing I own and I keep it wrapped up in the dry cleaner’s cling film. Well that dress is from Ted Baker (side note: great menswear); somewhere I’d never usually shop because it’s not really my shtyle, but anyway, I digress… Ted Baker is the brand at the centre of this week’s innovation.


Ted Baker have launched a really slick shoppable video. S H O P P A B L E. Each item featured in the short film can be clicked on and saved in your basket… Pretty cool, right? Ted Baker is a very British brand so the clever people at Poke in London (easy now, that’s actually the name of the agency. British people are funny… hi Max!) decided to base the film around espionage. Even better, they got Guy Ritchie to produce it. G U Y  R I T C H I E you guys. Who doesn’t love a bit of Lock, Stock / Snatch? Great movies. Dya like dags?? Check out the video here:

Now, I’ve done some digging around and Ted Baker are not the first brand to do this. Burberry had done something similar back in 2012 but Ted’s version is done so very well (see above: Guy Ritchie). The film is called “Mission Impeccable” for Christ’s sake. L O V E it. They’ve even amplified it further by running an online scavenger hunt, pretending to “leak” classified documents on social and have customers to decode them. They’ve also followed this through in-store: customers speak certain words that are displayed on the windows into the Google Voice app and are given clues in return in order to win prizes. That’s the jist of it; but more info can be found here:

Usually I tend to show innovations that are so new that I’ve to make up suggest how it could possibly work from a brand & advertising perspective; but for once this is something that could be implemented straight away. It’s just one step on from Ikea’s shoppable Facebook posts!

So that’s this week’s innovation, folks! And before you ask, yes, this is my F A V O U R I T E new thing #spacesinbetweenletterstomakeapoint #oppositeofahashtag

Stay tuned for more fun, fashion & frolics (and alliteration, apparently) – same time, same place!


Aido – Your New Best Mate – Innovatie

Friday, September 2nd, 2016

Ladies and Gents

It’s finally here. The most life-changing tech update since the launch of the fingerprint scanner on the iPhone. After 6 long, arduous years, you can now zoom on Insta! #creepsunite because let’s be honest, we’ve all been there: “MUM you can’t zoom on Insta. Oh my GOD did you like it?! That photo is 97 weeks old UUUGGHHH FMFL”

But while InstaZoom most definitely deserves an honourable mention, that’s not what this week’s innovation is about. I know you hold Innovatie to a higher standard than that; which is to be expected given the calibre (great word – also not spelt the way you’d think!) of the innovations that have been coming your way. I wouldn’t want to let myself down; or make a holy show of myself, as my mother would say.

Let me introduce you all to Aido. Aido hasn’t actually been born yet, his parents are saving up for his arrival in October (the cost of having a child these days is only desperate), but he’s gonna be super smart and v cute. Aido is going to live with you in your gaff and be your best friend, teacher, chef, nightlight, personal shopper, lover, smartphone and laptop all rolled into one dotey little package. He can even screen your calls and tell your parents you’re not in when they pop round uninvited – see 0:17 into the video below – because we all know if you let them in you’ll spend the entire day trying to explain to them how to use poor Aido… “And he has de Shkype as well, does he? That’s fierce handy now for ringing Mairead down in Bondi Beach” (this is all of us, btw:

Check out the video here:

You can pre-order him on, for about the same price as an iPhone ($600), which is an absolute bargain really…–2#/

And the best thing about Aido? The fact his name is Aido. AIDO. Come on lads.

Side note: how great of a character was Aido in Love/Hate? Aido & Nadine – modern Ireland’s answer to John & Mary from Father Ted:

Ok so granted I’m not sure how brands would fit into this space as of yet but where there’s a will there’s a way! It could be an interesting one for supermarkets and FMCGs if Aido is doing all the grocery shopping? He could suggest new products, etc. Aido has already won the 2016 GameChanger award from technology magazine T3. Overachiever (rolling my eyes).


Until next week, folks

Slán agus beannacht libh go léir


Sky Delves into Virtual Reality – Innovatie

Friday, August 12th, 2016

Hello friends

So here we are… Instagram Live! Haha, gotcha. Nope, over here at the Innovation Desk we like to buck the trend… Go against the grain… Throw caution to the wind… etc. etc. We’re going to have a look at a company that’s making some really interesting headway in the virtual reality field – Sky.

Sky made the decision that they wanted to become a leader in this field… And like most things they turn their hand to, they throw the kitchen sink at it. Think about it – Sports Channels (who else could have given Darts a platform?), PVRs (everyone had that one friend that not only had “the channels”, but also a Sky box. He/she was really annoying to have around but MY GOD did you need him/her. MTV? Sky Movies? How else would you eventually get to watch American Pie?), News (I mean what else would you watch after your siesta while you’re in the hotel room on your holidays?), and HDTV (absolutely brilliant for sport; not so necessary for your Friday night movie… I don’t need to see Jude Law’s wrinkles. Leave me to my delusions).

Early this year they set up a VR Studio, and hired small but extremely talented and experienced team whose sole role is to create top class VR experiences across the entertainment, news and sport disciplines. Now, sport has been leading the charge here, which probably makes sense. It’s Sky’s heartland. Beckham was featured in a VR video to mark Sky Sports’ 25th anniversary and it was viewed 3.2 million times.

They’ve hedged their bets that VR is not just a trend, but will come part of the fabric of daily life over the coming years. Maybe not straight away, but in time, it could become as normal a part of life as rewinding live TV. I don’t know about you, but the day we got a Sky box was the highlight of my childhood. It was the October mid-term break in 1999 and I was 11. No more taping episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer onto VHS tapes (9pm Friday nights on Sky One, followed by Angel at 10pm, in case you were wondering). Oh no no. We’d moved into the 21st century.

Anyway, over the last 6 months the team has learned a lot in terms of what works for VR – which you can read more about here: Take note: SHORT FORM. Sure we knew that already.

Ok so what’s the big deal? I think this is really cool, for a few reasons. Firstly, as I mentioned above, when Sky go for something, they go all in. They make themselves the major player, the one everyone else tries to emulate. Secondly, they’ve hired an award winning director to head up the team – to me this is evidence that they are putting creativity at the heart of this, which is a strong start on the road to success. And finally, think how cool this will be in 5 years or so? You, previously just a passive viewer, could become virtually immersed in news reports, football matches, reality TV (Ex on the Beach, hello???)…

In terms of advertising I think it’s a really good sign that a media owner is investing so heavily in this space, making their offering more premium and attractive for brands to advertise with. This in turn (hopefully) will force the hands of advertisers to keep up to speed and create better work in conjunction with their agencies.

So bit of an essay there, but interesting innovation all the same.

And before anyone thinks they’re really smart and thinks “haha looks like you were that annoying friend with the Sky box”, I was a deprived child and everyone else had one before me… Hence the unbelievable envy and subsequent joy when my constant pleading finally paid off.


So on that note, I’ll leave ye be

Mind yourselves now


Low-Tech Innovation – Innovatie

Friday, July 15th, 2016

Hey guys and gals


Ready for another Innovatie instalment?


So this week’s innovation is a bit different than usual. It’s ridiculously simple; and it’s nothing to do with advertising; but I think it’s brilliant.


It’s a low-tech “augmented reality” game that people are playing on trams in Amsterdam. The guys at Headmade in the Netherlands and came up with a really innovative way to a) kill time between tram stops, and b) make you PUT DOWN YOUR SMARTPHONE (I swear, that’s how good it is). They’ve stuck little creatures with big open mouths on the windows of trams. As the tram moves, you cover one eye and move your head up and down to “eat” passer-by’s heads off! It sounds weird, but check out this video:

More here:


HOW COOL IS THAT?! Imagine how good that would be on the Luas? Considering Dublin is a fishbowl and more than likely you actually know the people you pass by…

Girl you scored in Coppers that gave you a fake number?

Guy you went on a date with and he didn’t offer to pay for any drinks?

Girl who was such a b1tch to you in school?

That weird guy in your elective module in college?



I’m off to stick some stickers on the Luas.


Until next time, folks

Drive her like she’s late for Mass


Social Banking in Singapore – Innovatie

Friday, July 8th, 2016

Hello pals


Welcome to the first blog instalment of Innovatie. The good people at Vizeum Dublin HQ know Innovatie well, but it’s time to bestow our favourite innovations on the wider web. Hope you enjoy what’s to come! Bitta craic sure.


This innovation comes all the way from Singapore (where the forecast for tomorrow is 30 degrees and cloudy – very close).


20 Singapore-based banks are coming together early next year to trial making payments via social.


This would allow consumers transfer money by selecting their Facebook or Twitter account instead of entering a bank account number & sort code. Mobile phone numbers will be used as a proxy for bank accounts.


Side note: how annoying are those IBAN codes?! Here’s a handy converter in case you’re ever stuck: – save that in your bookmarks now guys and gals, and don’t say I don’t look after you.


Pretty handy, right? Obviously this isn’t a totally new idea –

  • Apple Pay has been around for a while (available here but only if you’re on a 6/6plus or similarly modern Apple device; and are using an account from one of the following banks: NatWest, Nationwide, RBS, Santander, Ulster Bank or MBNA… On the off-chance you bank with one of the aforementioned, here’s info on how to get started: )
  • Facebook in the US has been allowing users to transfer funds for free vis its Messanger app (careful though if this ever comes over here, Mark & Shaz are defo reading our mails)
  • Apparently, Snapchat has a “Snapcash” service which allows you to send money to your contacts (I reckon steer clear of this one; if James Kavanagh’s Snapchat can be hacked, so can yours. And you’re nowhere near as gas as he is. Presenting up on the mantelpiece. Whistling. #nooneissafe).


There’s not much more to the article, but here it is anyway


And a bit more info here


Until next time, folks

Keep her lit