Microsoft’s “Brandon Generator” is Close, but No Cigar

Post-advertising is based on brands genuinely adding value to consumers’ lives by generously giving them valuable content. By providing rewarding experiences, brands earn the right to expose consumers to their products and services. At its core, post-advertising is about creating an audience around relevant content and then migrating that audience to relevant products and services.

Microsoft’s crowd-sourced, animated graphic novel, Brandon Generator, a stylish, Sin City type animation in which the audience helps shape the protagonist’s world, would seem to meet this definition.


Adios, Middleman: The Rise of Direct-to-Consumer Platforms

Turning a great idea into a reality is getting easier by the minute. Small businesses and individuals can pitch, barter and sell straight to the masses. The audience is connected directly to the creator, sans middleman. With the help of platforms like Kickstarter, Kiva and Etsy, funding any number of projects has become a democratic, and virtually seamless, process. More and more the crowd is enabling individuals to make great things happen. If this is the marketplace of the future, how do already established brands fit in? Let’s delve deeper.


Crowdsourced! Eight Ways to Involve Your Most Important Allies

Brand-hatched crowdsourcing is nothing new. But constructive crowdsourcing with usable output? Crowdsourcing that evokes a palpable sense of togetherness? That’s new. Steps being taken by nimble branders like Warby Parker and Betabrand to engage (and we mean really engage) fans and enthrall newcomers will soon become tomorrow’s staples for sourcing success.

Want in on the unique new ways brands can use advanced crowdsourcing to engage followers? Read on. Each of the eight ideas we’ve carefully chosen has the potential to send your engagement numbers through the roof, as long as requests are within reason and rewards are provided.


In the Hands of the Masses: 5 Killer Crowdsourced Advertising Campaigns

As post-advertisers, we spend most of our lives coming up with ways to tell brand stories. So much time is spent thinking, brainstorming and discussing that we spend every ounce of gray matter our brains can spit out (some have more than others) in the hopes that our clients and their customers will see the genius in what we've done. And while our dogs bark at us like strangers when we come home after 12 straight days of work and our kids refer to us as "that guy in all the photos who brings us presents on our birthdays and gives mommy naughty back rubs," we truly feel the effort we put out is worth it.


All Together Now: How Crowds Record History

This post originally appeared in our May issue of “Live Report from the Future of Marketing,” our monthly Post-Advertising newsletter. Subscribe for free here.

Perhaps the greatest part of the internet is how it allows complete strangers to come together around a singular event and create things both profound and absurd. The death of Osama bin Laden was just such a momentous occasion. While some took to the streets to celebrate, most went straight to their computers and mobile devices to let the world know how they felt. If Twitter's record breaking 3,440 tweets per second (TPS) is any indication: people had a tremendous amount to say.


Turning the Tables on Brand Identity

Last month, YouTube user Normative examined remix culture arguing that such mash-ups have become a way for different social circles to interpret work. Greater than what one person can do alone, he theorizes it’s changed the rules of interaction in a digital age.