Brilliant Reads: a brilliant announcement, radical planning and strength in weak signals

Welcome to Brilliant Reads. This week we’re looking at how to put the radicalism back in planning, and how to find strength in weak signals. But first, we’ve got a brilliant announcement…

Brilliant Noise acquires Endless

Brilliant Noise has acquired its long-time design partner, Endless. The company becomes part of Brilliant Noise immediately, adding design thinking and production capabilities to our team.

Endless’s portfolio of amazing brand development and design work for brands like Rapha, the BFI, Porsche, Modern Love and Enigma Cycles make it a company we’re honoured to be making part of Brilliant Noise.

Making planning radical again

Image credit: mrhayata

In this post, Martin Weigel writes that planning has lost its radicalism, and suggests how it can go about getting it back again.

Account planning was started to give agencies a real understanding of the consumer and to focus on the effectiveness of marketing. Weigel argues that it has lost sight of these roots in recent years, and is suffering as a result.

He writes: ‘if planning is to help businesses adapt, survive, and prosper in this world, it must regain its sense of purpose, and go back to its future as a radical movement.’

He gives five commandments to make planning radical again:

  • Planning will be knowledgable about the fundamental principles of marketing and communications.
  • Planning will be knowledgable about how ordinary people live.
  • Planning will have a good working knowledge of people’s media behaviours.
  • Planning will be able to actually evaluate the effectiveness of the ideas it helps to develop.

Finding strength in weak signals

Image credit: Jian Awe

Image credit: danbri

Listening to ‘weak signals’ gleaned from social media can have a strong impact for businesses, Martin Harrysson, Estelle Métayer, and Hugo Sarrazin write in this McKinsey article.

Weak signals are snippets of information, normally gathered from social networks, that can help companies to figure out what their customers want and to spot looming industry and market disruptions before competitors do.

Spotting weak signals is more likely when companies can marshal dispersed networks of people who have a deep understanding of the business and act as listening posts. This requires that employees have the time and freedom to dedicate to reading and researching on social networks.

The article suggests that to make the most of weak signals, it can be useful to get senior leaders actively involved with the social media sources that give rise to them; executives who are curious and attuned to the themes emerging from social media are more likely to spot such insights.

Just listening for weak signals isn’t enough though – companies must channel what’s been learned to the appropriate part of the organisation so the findings can influence product development and other operational activities.

Leading The Digital Business Revolution: notes, slides, video

If you missed our digital transformation webinar, featuring Martin Gill, VP & principal analyst at Forrester Research Inc., Alun Williams, European digital director at TUI Travel, and Brilliant Noise’s Antony Mayfield last week (or if you saw it and liked it so much you want more) you’ll find notes, slides and a video of the webinar on our blog.

A journey to meaningful measurement

Last week Beth spoke at Charity Comms’ ‘Stats That Matter’ workshop. In her talk, Beth looked at how to achieve live integrated dashboards, ad hoc reporting, implementation and meeting measurement challenges. You can see her slides on Slideshare.

Sortie en mer

Sortie en mer is an immersive (in more ways than one) web experience, which uses infinite scrolling in an inventive way.

Google tests self-driving car on city streets

Google has been testing its self-driving cars on city streets. As this video shows, the car has some pretty impressive features when it comes to dealing with a range of different scenarios on the road, from level-crossings to roadworks.

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