How to get your energy back

Agency work is about people, ideas, thoughts, strategies. And you can't do this when you are a whiney little gangster; tired, and grumpy.

I'm sensitive to people's moods. If I'm in a crowd of umotivated beings I find it very difficult to break out. If I'm having a draining conversation with someone, it affects me. These are my energiser methods.

Note: This does not reflect my workplace, it reflects me. 

Morning Routine

I tell everyone to get a morning routine. Make sure it includes; two big glasses of water, 20 squats, forcing a smile while you shower, and the usual hygiene stuff. It works miracles. If you are strong enough to  follow your morning routing you set yourself up to tackle the day head on. 

A morning winner is always a winner! 

Body posture

Stand up straight. And before you go into a meeting, difficult conversation, negotiations, raise your arms into a big V sign above your head. Holding the victory position lowers your cortisol (stress hormones) levels and increase your testosterone levels (closely linked to assertiveness


You have to watch this video. What an inspiring and useful video.  Our pitch team now always raises their arms in victory right before the meeting starts.

Conversion Energy

You'll notice that most of your colleagues start the day on a low note. Low energy, perhaps even a bit grumpy. Start your day by passing bursts of your energy to them. See it as your mission to take those first 3 minutes of conversation with them and raise their energy level.  

Don't start talking softly and meekly on their grumpy level. NO! Supercharge them! I takes a bit of your energy, but you'll get it back from them throughout the rest of the day.

Now go energise!

Native Advertising is lipstick on a pig

Native Advertising, it has been a buzzword now for some time but it seems to be picking up this year after a few panels were dedicated to it at SXSW

We're getting it wrong.

First, what is native advertising? The following slides show it well (Taken from a Sharethrough video).

It's basically advertising, that is integrated closer to the content and copies the look and feel of the content. Or as Kissmetrics puts it:

they are a form of advertising that is so tightly interwoven within the site it’s being promoted on that customers can’t tell that it’s advertising.

It's the digital version of this:

So what should we be doing?

Instead of brands creating cat videos

They need to focus on utility marketing. Deliver such great value from the outset that the consumer cannot ignore you. Great examples of these are: 

Example 1: Nivea - Sun Alarm App

Nivea created an app that wakes people at certain times based on the weather. Watch the video to get the full picture. Can you imagine this being useful?

Example 2: Samsung - Charging stations

It doesn't have to be a digital product. Look at this by Samsung. A charging station at the airport. Talk about useful.

Example 3: HSBC - Special Privileges

(disclosure, we made this)

We worked together closely with HSBC to create the Smart Privileges platform on which merchant partners could highlight their credit card deals. And for card holders, it's fast becoming the single tool to discover relevant new products and experiences tied to your desired location, your wants, and your habits. 

What should you ask yourself?

If you're a marketer. Ask yourself: "Am I yelling at my consumers?" or if you're working with native advertising: "Am I yelling the wrong content through the better integrated but still wrong, bullhorn?"

And then take the next step. Think about how you can add value to the consumers life. Let's start putting customers central again.

Work with your client, not for them

I'm often asked why we don't launch a start up instead of working with clients. We have the in house skills to do so. We:

  • Understand the market
  • Have a proven record of finding market fit
  • Are able to build deeply technical products

Have the in house anayltics to pivot, pivot, pivot until get hockystick growth (yes, I did use those words, troll away)

And I tell them that we do. We launch a start up with every one of our clients.

New clients come to Antics asking us to solve a communications problem; "I'm not reaching this target market." or "I need to increase rural market penetration for this specific product line." And when we look at these challenges with our agile, creative, tech, entrepreneurial eyes, we giggle with glee. Really, we do.


We build digital business models that solve their problems, and more. Some potential clients are scared off. But most of them get it, they're on our side, and that's when we start working WITH our client instead of FOR our clients.

That is why we launch a start up with every project. That is why I get messages from my colleagues on Sunday evening after inspiration has hit them. That's what keeps us coming back every morning, knowing that we are contributing to something bigger. 

What keeps you giggling with glee?

Sweden's twitter account talks Marijuana, Labia and more. It's awesome.

People have character. They have flaws, they make mistakes, they're funny, they're sad. And that's why we are drawn to eachother, the personal narrative we all have attracts us to eachother. Brands often try to hide their charater, instead portraying their own version of perfect. The image that they think will bring customers but instead makes for a bland mush of brand greyness. It's gross.

Sweden is putting it's labia (apparantly a Swedish expression, proof here) on the table and baring all. It gives a select group of Swedes control over it's twitter account, with all the mistakes that come with it. Talk about a daring digital media play.

After a few gaff's which included misspelling Finnish and speak of some very private activities it's becoming clear that Sweden is going all in with this one. They're putting themselves out there and that's great. I wish more countries and brands would do that.

Nice one Sweden and agency Volontaire.