Your Oculus Rift idea isn't innovation.

Okay a bit of a clickbait headline, I'll give you that but stick with me. Right now across the globe there will be creatives, technologists and clients all chomping at the bit to use the latest bit of technology. Now while technology is often innovate or exciting it alone will not automatically make your idea itself innovative. 

Sounds simple enough? But so often you'll see people presenting a piece of tech or new platform without a core idea behind it. They just want to be the first, it is a PR race. Which is fine. There is nothing wrong with doing something first as an experiment or PR win. There is room for that in the industry - heck it is some agencies entire business model. The problem is when agencies believe that this alone is what makes them pioneers. It becomes the de facto way for innovation. This is dangerous as it means that agencies could be missing out on some truly fantastic ideas. Too blindsided by one path way to innovation. 

There are some fantastic agencies out there that are building innovative approaches to business models, services, research and tech. From Karmarama's approach business to AKQA's approach to tech - these agencies build out from a core innovation principle of solving a problem or making something better. Then they build on that with technology, infrastructure and whatever else is needed.

So my message is, yes play with technology but treat it as a tool in your kit. Don't start with Instagram, Oculus rift or whatever else comes next but start with your audience and how you can surprise and delight them. Then find a solution to do that, this is where you look at what platform or technology can help you achieve this. 

As always start with a human truth, an idea that you can build on. A platform idea that can help your message go anywhere in any medium. Then you're idea will last far beyond technology. 

Think back to Secondlife if you want a reminder of what happens to brands when they just use technology without an idea. 

The art of the old school.

My Polaroid Land Camera - 330 model. 

My Polaroid Land Camera - 330 model. 

Since beginning my career I've always been fascinated by life before digital. Even though digital is a huge part of what I do, I find it is key to understand what creatives and makers had to do to achieve what we can do with ease these days on a computer. 

For me it is learning the craft and time it takes to create. It gives a better appreciation of what people make and have made. 

A big part of that for me is photography. I shoot digitally for work and client projects but you can always find an old 35mm or Instant camera in my kit bag. I love experimenting with the film, lighting and knowing that you can't fix anything that's not captured correctly in post. 

It is part art and part science. You have to focus on the image, the core of what you aim to capture and not rely on the visual alone to tell your story. 

As a creative I've often told my team to break an idea down to what I call "The pub line" .If you can go to a stranger in a bar and tell them the idea without having to whip out visuals or explain it for hours and hours, then you know you've got a solid idea to build on. 

Videos, campaigns, imagery they stimulate the mind but what we all remember if the core of the idea.

So I constantly train myself to think about the core and everything else on top is the enhancement to what I'm saying. A good website will help build a brand but a good idea will help it become loved.