The view looking back to Ebrington from the Longmoor Estate in Gloucestershire.

Time to start something new?

It's time to start something new.

Spring is in the air.Read more


Buddha. Batsford Arboretum, Moreton-in-Marsh

Dear Brands. Please don't use War to sell shit.

War. What is it good for?

Turns out, it works quite well if you're a brand that wants to jump on the back of a lot of media attention and traffic.

Read more


Be more Uma. Lose myself in branding. Work with people who crave fun.

Branding Manifesto. Be more Uma.

I ‘do’ branding.

I still feel awkward saying that out loud to people I meet who ask "what do you do?"Read more


Yussef Dayes Music

Music for Productivity

Not a day goes by without music in my life.

I'm sure many of you are exactly the same.

It's a ritual that I think many a creative will adhere to daily.

Coffee. Quiet before the storm. Playlist.

But what music enables the productivity?

  • Lyrics. No lyrics?
  • 170BPM Banger. Something more pedestrian?
  • Specific frequencies to encourage neural optimisation?
  • A guilty pleasure from the 80's?

For me, it all depends on mood and type of work.

At the minute, any of Floating Points faster paced remixes, the stunning Jazz drummer Yussef Dayes, Toronto's Jacques Green, or the meditative wonderfulness of Mr John Carrol Kirby.

What one artist/song do you reach for when you need to switch on the productivity?

Follow me on Spotify.


Marketing and the Blockchain. Smart Contracts.

Hand on heart. Do you trust your marketing or advertising agency? Do you doubt the value? Are they thinking bigger picture when it comes to your brand, your marketing message, your future business development?

In an age of ever-growing mistrust in vast swathes of our interactions with banks, the media, government and the advertising and marketing industries – how can we feel more confident in these institutions and what they offer us? In our personal lives and business.

My money is on the blockchain.

WHAT IS THE BLOCKCHAIN I HEAR YOU SAY?

The blockchain is a digital ledger (basically, one large spreadsheet) that records transactions or interactions between two parties. The transactions get recorded and saved on numerous computers on the Blockchain network. Meaning no one central body, individual or organisation ‘owns’ the data.

It has been decentralised.

The data is then open to be viewed publicly by members of the network and can be almost 100% proven to be accurate and unhackable due to the nature of the Blockchain – if someone or something tried to change a single transaction in the chain, it throws all other transactions out of kilter.

Smart contracts allow the performance of credible transactions without third parties. These transactions are trackable and irreversible.[1] Smart contracts were first proposed by Nick Szabo, who coined the term, in 1994.

How will this translate to more transparency in the advertising and marketing world though?

Imagine a world, where the agency you are working with discloses on the blockchain the subcontractors they used on your project. What they paid them. How many hours it took to create your website. Even, what their mark up is.

A world where the transactions made on your behalf when purchasing such things like AdWords, Facebook Ads, Media buying are all recorded, with a trail that fully discloses the costs, right through the real live data – of what that spend generated for your business.

Blockchain also has the power to protect copyright for agencies and creators – and ensures individuals and businesses are not the victims of plagiarism. There's nothing worse than buying or paying over the odds for creative or professional consultation that has been copied and pasted from another source.

This data has the power to build real trust with your advertising, marketing or media buying agency – creating deeper business relationships that can scale and become sustainable for both parties. Client and agency.

'Smart Contracts' – "A smart contract is a computer protocol intended to digitally facilitate, verify, or enforce the negotiation or performance of a contract. Smart contracts allow the performance of credible transactions without third parties. These transactions are trackable and irreversible."

These 'Smart Contracts' set up between agencies and businesses can create the ability to be paid, only when both parties are happy with the outcome.

Will these industries succumb to this newfound honesty? It will and already is.

Truth is a media buying agency embracing Blockchain technology, giving them the competitive edge over other media buyers who are struggling to keep up. By adopting blockchain technology, this alone has become a prime marketing campaign for them. They are a business with their finger firmly 'on the pulse', leading the way with this technology in their field.

Bounties Network, backed by Venture Capital and Ethereum Development firm Consensys is a platform where individuals or businesses can outsource specific tasks – Programming, design, marketing consultation – and pay the freelance resource directly.

No commission or transaction fees. Possibly the end of UpWork and Fiverr? Too soon to call, but overall the blockchain and smart contracts need more time to mature and grow in overall usage.

The marketing revolution has started. Fuelled by blockchain, it needs time and the bravery of existing and new marketing and advertising agency owners to come around to the idea – but I think its inevitable.

In the meantime, what can you do to command more transparency from your advertising or marketing agency?

Moreover, how could you use blockchain technology in your own business to get ahead and build trust with your customers?

Photo by Mike Alonzo on Unsplash