Is it the packaging or the content that really matters?

Ever since my presentation at MIPCOM, the comments I get about the presentation are firstly about The DRESS, and secondly about the presentation.


This situation brings me to think that, with your help, I can attempt to solve serious marketing problem:

Is it the packaging or the content that matters the most?

By the way, this question doesn’t only apply to packaged goods.

Let’s set the context: The DRESS is not a skirt with an overlay, it is not pink, and above all it was not THAT short…

If you haven’t seen the keynote, you can can watch it here (skip to the last 10 min for a view of The DRESS)

Here is the real deal:

A structured, standing collar juxtaposes the ethereal, asymmetrical billowing on the sleeveless Daris dress.Made in our silk georgette fabric

Daris dress by Theory runway


Please help me evaluate the real impact of The DRESS (the packaging) on the TVxtwitter keynote (the content) by taking this anonymous short survey:


Hopefully your honest answers will  help understand if the feedback about the dress was:

1- Politically correct “ what the f** were you thinking @mariesornin, did you really think you could pull this off?? “


2- Genuinely positive “woooo, it looked hot but we don’t want to make you feel uncomfortable..”

I will of course analyse the results with world renown experts such as @amidha and @anna_blue to come up with a decision about the next occasion to wear The DRESS.

The results and decision will be publicly published in my next post.

Thank you for your contribution to solve #firstworldproblems.

Marie Sornin

Start up thinking// thinking start up

Here is a fun chat with Dan Day, founder of Kinderloop, about what it’s like to create your own start up!

Have a look at Kinderloop, and if you like the idea, let Dan know!

Good luck to the team at Kinderloop for their quest in the Silicon Valley and stay tuned an update when they return from the States!


Back to the Future

Oct 2010 feels like Aug 2000 to me… different times, different places but a sensation of “de déjà vu”.

August 2000, was when back in Paris, my two business partners and I started, independent digital consultancy agency. Back then web marketing only just beginning. There were only 11 million web users* in France and the online spend was less than 2% of the advertising expenditure*.

Today I am in Sydney and just joined Mediabrands to structure, head up and champion social media for all the agencies of the group and their clients. In Australia, the web has gone a long way over the last 10 years: fully recovered from its initial crash, grown strongly and steadily to the $2 billion** mark, taking over cinema and radio and proving to be one of the most efficient and measurable advertising channel … Mobile and cloud computing are now on the horizon shaping up the future….


So looking at those 2 situations, you could think they are very different; that I am in much more comfortable situation selling social media now that a large majority of Australians are using the Internet… well, think again. Being head of social, feels very much like being a pioneer back in the early digital days. People look at you like you are the messiah. You are not introduced as a director, a business developer or a GM… No, you are a guru, a wiz, a star, a legend…. Clients listen to you like you are going to bring the solution to all the questions their managers have been asking them about stuff they think they know but secretly don’t want to admit that don’t really grasp. Interestingly, they also doubt everything you say and are extremely cautious when it comes to signing off the part of their marketing budget to social media. You have to educate, present, justify, explain, detail, slice and dice everything you envisage for the brand…

They know they can’t do without but don’t really what to do with… They absolutely want to get in that space without having clear objectives or KPIs.
Remember when every client wanted a .com…. feels familiar when they all cry out for a Facebook page, or a twitter account, doesn’t it?

Remember when ad servers were only tracking CTR, and then post view got introduced and de duplication, and now… feels familiar when you were talking about blogging, and now recommending social applications, building communities, geo localized content….

Objectives are confused, measurement is tricky, technology is evolving fast and as a specialist, rather than a guru, you lead your clients and colleagues onto this rocky road ahead…

Paris 2000, Sydney 2010: Same same but different! Loving every single bit of it!

Marie Sornin

*Benchmark group
** IAB


Is social media messing with our personalities?

The more I participate in conferences, events and public presentations… the more I wonder if social media is messing with our personalities and how far this whole thing is going to go.


This is what makes me have this kind of metaphysical interrogations: 

You are at a conference; the speakers have prepared slick, detailed, sharp speeches backed up by inspirational slides or videos. They have endless knowledge about the topics they are presenting. Through their speeches, they convey their passion and enthusiasm, sometimes their frustration and humor… and of course, to finish off their “show” they will ask the audience if anyone’s got any question…. Nothing… until the MC breaks this uncomfortable silent by proposing questions from the live Twitter feed; and digs out a 140 character jargon/ shortened/ typoed line by some anonymous user name such as sexy_geek123… 
Don’t get me wrong, I am not criticizing Twitter. I think it is a tool that has great benefits in connecting people and sharing immediate information. It’s timeliness makes it unique touch point in the social media landscape. I am just questioning its use in this particular context when sexy_geek123 is in the room attending the presentation.
Where is sexy_geek123 sitting? And why is he/she just not getting up, introduces him/ herself on the mic and asks his/her question? Anyone can click a button and send a bomb of a question but it takes a bit more guts to stand up and formulate a point in front of an audience. Some personalities are comfortable with that and some aren’t, whereas everyone seems to be standardized behind a user name.

I don’t see myself as conservative and I fully support the fast growth of digital and social media (it is what makes me live after all!). But am I old school in saying that there should be space for digital interaction and space for physical conversation??? Or are we moving to a world where all our communication will happen through devices, codes and electronic data feed???

The Cool wave

Sound alliance (network of sites centred on music opinion and conversation) just presented us the results of their research panel. They have been surveying their core target audience: 18-24 yrs old over the last 3 years and came up with a really “cool” and different way of measuring audience interests, actions and attitudes. Introducing the ‘Cool Wave’
I think the charts speak for themselves….

Myspace ‘Cool Wave’ vs Youtube ‘Cool Wave’


Sound Alliance plans to conduct further research in last quarter of 2010. So, Opti people, let us know if you would be interested in measuring your client brands and products appeal to this target audience.