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Greetings from Boston: Part I

I’m writing this week from one of my favorite cities outside Ohio, Boston. I’ve made the trip east for this year’s HOW Design Conference…an amazing collection of designers and others associated with the business of being creative. For a few days, we get to disconnect (at least a little….full disconnection in an age of wireless internet and PDA’s seems virtually impossible, but that’s another topic) from the day-to-day tasks and learn new skills, refuel our creative tanks and think of our businesses in a while new way.

The event officially opened last night with a keynote presentation by Jeremy Gutsche, the brainchild behind TrendHunter (incidentally, if you haven’t paid the website a visit, I highly encourage it). As you might expect, Jeremy is in the business of scouring the globe, interpreting the trends and predicting what will be cool next. His topic to kick off the next few days was Creating a Culture of Innovation. I won’t even try to regurgitate his presentation here, but it covered a lot of the things we typically know, but rarely get around to implementing.

But one of the things that really struck me while I was listening to his presentation was the number of times he used out-of-home executions as examples of breakthrough ways to engage your customers, creating a memorable link to your brand’s message. While we all tend to hear so much about the power of the Internet to deliver highly targeted, personalized messages (which is absolutely true), viewing Jeremy’s examples last night reminded me of the power our physical medium possesses, when applied in a creative, relevant way.

I’ll post as many of the examples from last night as I’m able to find. Hopefully it will help drive some conversation, provide some creative inspiration and give us yet one more reason to be glad we’re in the business we’re in. Cheers!

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