Curator News Feed: June 14, 2013

This week we welcomed the Facebook hashtag, read about Coke's awe-inspiring Wearable Movie, reflected on swag lessons we learned from our favorite "Saved by the Bell" character back in the day, and gained some wisdom from Burberry's recent campaign on living digital. Read on to get the scoop:

Put a Smile On

Maximizing mobile, Harvard Business Review. On a recent flight, I sat next to a gentleman who works in mobile advertising and our conversation really got me thinking about where mobile is going. He described it as the “wild west” of advertising, and I think he’s right. People may be using their smart phones in place of a computer when they’re on the go, but they are not using them in the same way. We’re online on our phones, but not in a browser, and our time and attention is even more limited. In the cab ride after my flight, it’s funny that this article was at the top of my Feedly, as it echoed a lot of his sentiments. Check out the full article for a great overview of where mobile is, and where it’s going. – Matthew

AMD finally gets @AMD thanks to Seattle entrepreneur’s creative charity swap, Geek Wire. We know it might not always be 'cool' to be first to the party, but jumping on a new social network right away has its advantages. Your username, Twitter handle and logins are becoming a new part of your identity. And if you're lucky, it’s also a brand's identity, which they would agree is worth $50,000 to own. This guy was lucky and made his luck work for social good, high five! – Brooke

Domino's Pizza launches new look in Northwest, The News Tribune. We love seeing great coverage of our clients. This story is about Mike Brown, co-op president of the local Domino’s franchisee group, and his new Pizza Theater stores. If you’re in the Puyallup area this Saturday, June 15, stop by from 4-6 p.m. for your chance to win tickets to the Justin Timberlake concert! – Dan

Loving the Midwest, The New York Times. Can a city be a brand? Brooklyn and Portland are two cities that have recently emerged as brands unto themselves. Mention these cities and one has a sense of its culture, lifestyle and, these days, its cuisine. Joke if you will about its status as a “flyover state”, I’ve always felt the city of St. Louis is a strong brand. I loved reading this piece in the New York Times about why this transplant came to embrace St. Louis. – Ann Marie

Excel Is An Art Form: These Beautiful Images Are Proof, ReadWriteWeb. If you're an Excel user like me, you're prone to the occasional day spent hunting and clicking for the right combination of commands that'll get it to perform some mundane task that WHY ISN'T IT EASIER??? So I don't know if this link will leave you feeling awed or helpless, but either way, it'll blow your mind. Tatsuo Horiuchi is a 73-year-old artist who, for the last decade or so, has been creating "paintings" with Excel. These are not the little pixelated, Mario Bros.-looking things you're imagining in your mind; they're really good. So good that some of them have been acquired by the art museum in Horiuchi's home town. Lest you doubt the authenticity of their origin, ReadWrite has a link where you can download the original Excel files and, at least theoretically, reverse-engineer them. Good luck with that. (Props to my friend, Evonne (@evonnebenedict) for tracking this link down.) – Paul

12 Lessons Zack Morris Taught Us About Cool, Buzzfeed. Because Zack Morris taught us all about swag. Important life lessons from “Saved By The Bell.” – Noelle

Burberry Ad Campaigns Blend Music, Fashion and Social, Huffington Post. Maybe it’s because I love the perfume or because I’m actually a fan of the “stodgy” trench coat, but I found it really interesting reading up on some of Burberry’s recent ad campaigns and the creativity that has helped breathe a new life into the brand. My favorite quote from the article that really gets you thinking though came from the company’s chief creative officer: "Digital for me is not a project; digital is a way that we live. If you deal with it as a project, it will always be superficial." – Annie

Put on a Smile, Vimeo. Perusing the web this week I came across a lot of really great campaigns, and this is one of my favorites for Coca-Cola Company by Ogilvy – The Wearable Movie. I love the idea to involve people across the world with such a simple idea: put on a shirt and take a picture, with each shot being a frame in an animated movie. - Chelsey

Mobile wallet users spent $500M in 2012 – nearly all of it at Starbucks, GigaOM. Will all that plastic in our wallets soon become obsolete? At least in Starbucks’ case, it is a possibility. I love the ease of using my iPhone to pay for my coffee in the mornings rather than having to fish out my debit card from the depths of my bag, and clearly, I’m not alone. – Megan

Reaching Your Invisible Audience

As Mobile World Congress 2012 wrapped up in Barcelona last week, company announcements contributed further evidence to the growing innovation of mobile and communication technologies across the board. Described last week by InformationWeek as a “mobile melting pot,” the annual event represents companies from across the globe, with varying cultures, languages, business focuses and product offerings culminating in one location for one week. With this level of pioneering ideas spawning from continents from all hemispheres, it would be easy to assume that the needs and wants of nearly every consumer worldwide would be addressed by one of the products and/or services that were spotlighted at this year’s event. Especially in the realm of mobile communications, the idea is to appeal to the masses. Many have viewed smartphones as a gateway to placing innovation in the hands of everyday users.

But what these devices fail to recognize is the full scope of their potential audience. The Economist brought this challenge to the forefront last month when it acknowledged that users must be able to both read and write in order to gain the communication benefits of simply text messaging. Even with today’s function of text to speech transfer, this still excludes the population that is deaf or hard of hearing.

This got me thinking about a broader question: As communicators, are we capturing the attention and appealing to all of our audiences? How many people are we failing to effectively reach? All of a sudden the hundreds of communication platforms spanning from mobile, print, social media and beyond that we often complain about being overwhelmed by now serve a much greater purpose – to connect in a more meaningful way with a broader audience. Multimedia messages are beginning to help address the issue of communicating with an illiterate and/or hard of hearing population on a mobile platform, as The Economist points out. But what about the rest? Are we addressing the needs of all stakeholders when we cultivate a message?

This should make us all think twice when we’re trying to communicate a message, whether it is in our everyday lives or for business. Who are all of our audiences? Are we speaking to them directly? And, even more importantly, are we connecting with them as effectively as possible? Thanks to the many innovations that continue to be introduced to new markets across the globe, we all have a better shot of accomplishing these goals. But we also still have a long way to go.