“The Lakers continue to be a juggernaut on and off the court.”Forbes magazine, December 2009.
I’m once again a proud Lakers fan having watched them pull off their 16th NBA finals victory in game 7 of the 2010 World championship, the 5th since Kobe joined the team 11 years ago.
It’s an understatement to say I’m happy they won! Truthfully though, it was so much fun to experience the team’s drive to win, I would have been happy even if they hadn’t.
Don’t misunderstand me; it’s really wonderful to have one of the winningest teams in the NBA, right here in my own hometown. However, the reason I’ve been a loyal Lakers fan for most of my adult life is because the Lakers as an organization, as a team, consistently deliver the highest level of talent and the highest level of entertainment year in and year out. Once again proving it doesn’t matter whether you win or lose it’s what you bring to the game! And Lakers, you bring an awful lot!
Many people erroneously think that social media is just for the younger generations, but a new study released by the AARP has proven that it’s just not the case. In fact, more than 27% of Americans aged 50 and older use social networks (with Facebook being the most popular), while 40% of all adults over age 50 consider themselves extremely or very comfortable using the Internet.
Earlier studies have shown that the fastest growing segment of social media users are adults over 44, which means that it is crucial that online marketers do not overlook the social web as a valuable tool to communicate with their older audiences. They are tech-savvy and ready to embrace new ways of communication, and it is important that marketers keep up with their audiences in this arena.
I can’t call myself an early adopter. Although I appreciate the latest techie gadget from afar, I would rather spend my cash on a new pair of Nicole Miller shoes or designer skinny jeans that make me look as good as the money I paid for them. However, after watching the demo of Apple’s latest and greatest, my calendar is marked, with alarm button set for June 15th; iPhone 4′s pre-order start date.
A few months ago I heard a TED talk by Simon Sinek called “How great leaders inspire action.” One of his prime examples was Apple and how they “sold” their products; in essence, what makes them so special. On paper, they don’t have better materials than anyone else. They don’t have access to a more talented pool of people than anyone else. But why are they different? The answer is in the question: WHY? Why do we do what we do? By WHY, we are asking, “What is our motivation? What is our purpose? What is our belief?” The core of any brand. Although I don’t have access to Apple’s brand guidelines, if I had to guess, their core belief might sound something like this: “In everything we do, we believe in challenging the status quo. We believe in thinking differently.” Apple’s success is not in retrofitting their products to this core understanding of themselves, but their ability to create products that continually reflect this core belief year after year. Instead of selling the product, they are selling an idea. When my PC friends fire off their list of complaints regarding Apple products, I can’t spar in technical speak. When they argue how elitist Apple is, I pretty much shrug my shoulders. But with so many gadgets out there that change and become updated every other second, iPhone 4 made me stop and mark my calendar in anticipation of such an ingenious device. iPhone 4 showed me a new way to see an old staple. iPhone 4 inspired me to buy who they are… and it’s pretty damn sexy.
Nike’s new adrenalin-charged World Cup TV commercial is a masterful example of storytelling. Called “Write The Future” and directed by Alejandro González Iñárritu, (Amores Perros, Babel, 21 Grams) it’s a skillful realization encompassing the global passion for arguably the world’s favorite sport. Backed by a thumping prog track by Focus, the lavishly detailed 3 minute film — how could we call it a mere “advert”? — is as much a tribute to some of the best in the profession as it is to the devotion of the fans.
Containing some surprise cameoes from Kobe Bryant, Roger Federer, Homer Simpson and Gael Garcia Bernal aswell as footballers Cristiano Ronaldo, Didier Drogba, Wayne Rooney, Fabio Cannavaro and Landon Donovan to name but a few, the intense jump cuts manage to capture the unpredictability of the game and, incorporating a nod or two to our electronic connectivity, several flashforwards to a possible but not unrealistic future. Skillfully weaving several storylines including a Rooney-obssessed nation, a jaunty Spanish musical homage and a Ronaldo statue/stadium, it’s one impressive journey.
In a statement which is as relevant to everyday life as it is to football, Ronaldo says, “One touch of the ball can be an opportunity to leave your mark on the game and write your own future, or equally a moment missed, that creates a legacy for your opponent with their fans.”
Davide Grasso, vice president of global football marketing at Nike, summed it up by adding: “This epic campaign really captures the scale, emotion and impact that one single moment in a football game can have on a player, fan or nation.”
Which ever way you look at it, the ad’s a winner! See for yourself.