Chasing Rainbows

By Christian Barnett



While I was in Iceland chasing rainbows like this one, others in the team were also tracking down rainbows.

James was in New York, innovating for a global brewer, Flo was in Paris helping Pernod Ricard create and tell better brand stories and Caroline was busy developing media strategies for Oxfam in Brussels. It’s better in their own words:

New York

Develop an innovation framework for a big booze brand? In NYC? Over 3 weeks? Sure. Love to. 

The project was a creative strategist’s wet dream. Hard task with a short time frame. Strategic and creative thinking in equal measure. Big national brand in a pickle.

Over a couple of days it became obvious that the brand was only innovating in ways that were serving to compound its issues. We’re talking poor quality perceptions, unclear taste expectations, limited occasion set and highly seasonal purchasing… So I spent the next 3 weeks helping to develop 3 things:

1 A new value proposition for the brand that would direct credible innovation – stating what the brand would bring to new product categories

2 An innovation framework built on consumer need states – that would allow us to develop new product ideas that could connect with new consumers, in new occasions

3 NPD concepts to fill these pillars – that were awesome”

Paris

Meanwhile, Flo was having a great time in Paris, training Pernod Ricard’s brand ambassadors from across the world on presentation and storytelling skills.

“The session involved functional essentials like how to structure a presentation, how to tell a story, how to rehearse, and it also featured some ‘interactive’ exercises which got everyone on their feet, practicing their body language, breathing and voice control (using tongue twisters from multiple languages to bridge the cultural barriers!).

It was such a fun session and so great to see everybody throwing themselves into all the exercises. I think everyone learnt something new and they told me afterwards they’d enjoyed it a lot.

Afterwards, we had a lovely evening with the ambassadors where I got to try a few of the brand’s ‘signature’ cocktails, and they could ask me questions on my session in a more casual environment. And, I even managed to squeeze in a quick trip up to the Sacre Coeur and some vintage shopping that afternoon. A little bit of work, a little bit of culture and a little bit of entertainment – all in all, a perfect 24 hours in Paris!”

Brussels

And during the past few weeks Caroline was in Brussels heading the media team at Oxfam EU.

“The experience brought me back into the intricate environment that defines Brussels, the city I worked and lived in for nine years before moving to London. A well-developed media strategy is a great start to roll out a consistent and focused plan in key markets. Add a pinch of creativity to your strategy and you’re head of the game. That’s the Sword & Stone way of thinking.”

Great work, great clients, great people. It’s a joy to be part of it. And as I found out with the little film, there is no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow because the rainbow keeps moving as you do. That’s a euphemism if ever there was one. Here’s to chasing!

What makes a good client?

Transformational Thinking

Chasing Rainbows

More Thinking